During early May Autocar’s news agenda was, like that of so much of the national press, informed by the buzz of the general election. Transport policy spokesmen from all three major parties made a special pitch to win the votes of Autocar readers.
Among the promises made by the Tories and Lib Dems was the removal of unneccessary traffic control measures, the introduction of a new ‘stabiliser’ fuel duty system, and greater investment in local road building. Seven months on, we’re still looking forward to delivery on those pledges.
Later in May, we brought you the exclusive on Alfa Romeo’s next alternative to BMW’s class-leading 3-series: the Giulia. It will be on sale by the end of 2011 and promises better handling and low emissions.
We also published exclusive imagery and information about a new front-driven, entry-level BMW hatchback designed to sit below the 1-series. The car will compete directly with the Audi A1 and will be on sale by 2013.
New brands-in-law Porsche and Audi both announced extra special versions of their flagship sports cars during May. Audi kicked off the month with the 199mph, 552bhp, £142,000 R8 GT, and Porsche duly followed it with the 205mph, 611bhp, £164,000 911 GT2 RS. Sibling rivalry’s clearly alive and well and resident in southern Germany.
Road test commitments took Autocar testers in different philosophical and geographical directions: to Morocco to drive the new £12,000 Dacia Duster budget 4x4, and to Maranello for a first taste of the £300,000 Ferrari 599 GTO. Two more different new cars we wouldn’t test all year, and yet both struck us as remarkable game changers, each in its own way.