Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Here we are – bruised, embattled and confused by the past 20 months of lockdowns, restrictions, fear and a series of highs and lows from what have been a set of extraordinary couple of years. We’re still here, still keeping you entertained and informed, and you keep coming back, so from that I can conclude that the AROnline team is doing a good job. For that, I thank you all…
I’m not going to dwell any more on the ongoing pandemic, and instead wish peace, health and safety upon you all. It’s clear that you’re all still coming back and engaging with the site. It’s been interesting looking through the Google Analytics data to see what the most popular pages are – and it won’t come as any surprise to (to me at least) see that some of the most popular stories on the site are about ‘non-firm’ cars.
Clearly, you love BMC. Austin Rover, MG Rover et al, but you’re also enthusiasts, and love to compare and contrast the fortunes of its rivals. Here’s a clue – in the Top Five performing development stories of the year, the Alfa Romeo Alfasud and Innocenti 90/120 Mini (below) figure prominently. Indeed…
In the car world, there’s been a significant shift in new car sales away from diesel and towards electric and plug-in hybrids. Electric cars are now taking more than 10% of the market after some very impressive sales growth. Having run an EV for the past year or so, there’s a lot to recommend them, especially if, like me, you’re lucky enough to have a home charger. However, for the rest of potential owners in flats, terraces and rented accommodation reliant on public charging, the news isn’t so rosy. The growth of the charger network is being outstripped by sales, and my own experiences are that we can’t yet rely on their reliability – this needs to improve.
The UK car industry continues onwards. Jaguar Land Rover struggles with supplies of semi-conductors – stunting production significantly. The Jaguar side of the operation had its forward model plans torn up in favour of an all-new electric model range commencing roll-out by 2025. Announcing that, Jaguar halted the development and introduction of the all-new electric XJ saloon just months before it went on sale. Land Rover continues to plough a very profitable furrow with the Defender – expect to see more variations on that theme soon.
Nissan launched a new Qashqai and celebrated another production milestone for the all-electric Leaf – all good news for the Washington factory – while it looked like McLaren could well be up for sale, even if reports that the company was going to Audi were a little premature. Britain’s heritage-flavoured importer, MG, continued to increase sales and look more and more like a serious manufacturer after establishing itself as seller of well-priced EVs. A week with the latest ZS EV certainly backed up that impression – keep your eyes peeled for the review.
And on that, it’s left to me to wish you all a happy and safe Christmas break – if you have one – and here’s to a better 2022. We all need it!