Welcome to another instalment of “Diary of a Motoring Journalist” where you can gain a bit more of an insight into what goes on in the automotive world from a journalists perspective. Last week I mentioned that I was about to enter an extremely busy phase with lots of exciting things going on. Some of these items are still being scribed or have been scheduled to be published at a later date for maximum exposure, but I can at least touch on what to expect in this article.
The start of the week kicked off with the UK launch of updated Civic and CR-V models. Honda haven’t had much going on in terms of new cars and so it had been a while since I last met up with the PR team. However, it was all smiles and laughs as we became reacquainted and grabbed the obligatory bacon sandwich. It was actually Honda who invited me on my first international car launch years ago and so I have a strong affinity with the people who work there. I was scheduled to attend a factory tour of Honda’s Swindon facility, but in a rather comical fashion, another journalist and myself ended up in Oxford after following a sat-nav that someone else had programmed. A little bit frustrating, but I have been assured there will be another opportunity to visit. All of the cars I drove Inside Lane has on loan for their full reviews in the coming weeks, so stay tuned!
The conclusion to that event saw me journey to Woking immediately after where I would stay the night. Why? Because a visit to the McLaren Technology Centre awaited the next day. I hardly slept as this “by invitation only” day gave me access to one of the most secure structures in the UK. Being shown around by none other than Amanda McLaren, I witnessed the inner workings of this Bond villain inspired technological hub. Whilst checking out the McLaren Automotive’s assembly line I glanced upon a secret new car which was completely undisguised. Out of professional courtesy I agreed not to run a story on what will be an exciting new offering from McLaren. Photography was prohibited which was a little bit annoying from a journalistic perspective, but then you can’t really complain about the rules when you are a rare guest. Great big thanks to all at McLaren who made that day possible. You can read about my visit HERE.
Mid-week brought me home where I had the chance to catch up with some work, Shanghai motor show loomed, and write-up my experiences of the past few days. The day after it was a very early start with my colleague to get into London. A secret location harbours the Ford Heritage fleet.
Entering the building which houses true Ford legends gave me goosebumps. Cars you could only dream of live here and are very well cared for. I got the keys to a Capri, Escort Mexico, and Escort Cosworth. The Cosworth in particular left an impression. Found out why HERE in my article.
A long week came to a close and I was very grateful that I covered all of those hundreds of miles in something comfortable. Inside Lane’s test car for that week was a top specification Citroen C4 Grand Picasso and it made life on the road much more pleasant.
Now I’ve just got to mop up what is left in terms of news from Shanghai and then I might treat myself to watching the new Avengers film.