Home » Tag Archives: opel

Tag Archives: opel

Wexford Opera Festival features three little known operas every year.

A night at the opera

The Wexford Opera Festival is a bit of an unusual proposition but it works and has done for years. Take three obscure operas, some of which haven’t seen the light of day since their début performance, and stage them again over the course of a few weeks. Of course, some operas are obscure for a reason and maybe they should be left mouldering but for every duffer there are several gems. This year was promising, with all three operas sung in Italian. It’s a general rule of mine not to go near German language opera. I find it dark and depressing. Surprisingly, opera in English is often woefully bad. There’s the advantage of being able to fully understand what’s going on without resorting to subtitles but there’s just something wrong about English language opera. You’re generally safer sticking with Italian or at a pinch, French. We travelled down in the aftermath of Ophelia and just before storm Brian made itself …

Read More »
The Ford Mondeo is the Continental Irish Car of the Year 2016

Ford Mondeo is Continental Irish Car of the Year 2016

The Ford Mondeo has been voted Continental Irish Car of the Year 2016 by the Irish Motoring Writers’ Association. The announcement of the 39th Irish Car of the Year Award was made at an awards ceremony in Dublin today. The winning car was revealed by Rosemary Smith, to mark the 50th anniversary of her victory in the Tulip Rally in April 1965. She is the only woman to have won the rally. The overall results, with weighted scores, were as follows: 1. Ford Mondeo 148 points 2. Volvo XC90 147 points 3. Mercedes Benz GLE 144 points 4. Kia Sorento 144 points 5. Skoda Superb 140 points The Irish Motoring Writers’ Association judges awarded points on the basis of criteria ranging from design, comfort, safety, economy, handling and performance as well as driver satisfaction, value for money and technical innovation, with a maximum of 20 points under each heading. John Galvin, Chairman of the Irish Motoring Writers’ Association, commented: “The …

Read More »
This handsome Toyota C-HR concept has a possible production future.

Paris Motor Show highlights

It’s often the case that Geneva shows the concept cars, while the two larger shows, Paris and Frankfurt, have more of an emphasis on production cars that we will actually see in showrooms. So it proved to be at Paris this year anyway, with a huge amount of new product on display, even if some of it won’t reach here until next year. Seeing as we were in Paris, I thought it appropriate to start with Peugeot and besides, they were the first stand I hit in Hall 1. An updated Exalt concept was the highlight, which incorporates trim made from recycled newspapers. This high-tech design was complemented by a beautifully styled sofa, made of Onyx and carbon fibre. Believe it or not, you can buy this now. More prosaically perhaps, we also saw the new 108, which will be here for January. It’s one of the trio that also comprise the Citroen C1 and Toyota Aygo. Another car I …

Read More »
The third generation Audi TT made its debut at Geneva.

Air of optimism at Geneva Motor Show

There was a huge amount of new metal at this year’s Geneva Show but no real standout star. Everyone I talked to seemed very bullish about prospects for the new car market this year and there was a palpable sense of optimism in the air, which was a very pleasant change. One of the more significant launches wasn’t even of a car. Apple choose Geneva to launch their new CarPlay system. It’s essentially a very advanced link between your phone and your car and it allows the phone to take over the car’s display and be controlled by the car’s buttons or by voice. As it evolves, it will become the most natural way to interact with your phone while driving. CarPlay is an operating system that can be applied to any iPhone that can run iOS 7 or later and is equipped with a lightning interface – essentially iPhone 5 or later. Right now, the system has been launched …

Read More »
Opel Insignia

New Insignia takes the stage at Frankfurt

Although the star of the Opel stand at Frankfurt was their gorgeous Monza concept, back in the real world, we had the Insignia. Although described as a new car, it really is more an extensive facelift. It’s recognisably an Insignia but in every way it has been improved – dramatically in some areas. Inside, you’ll find a refreshed interior, with an impressive 8″ touchscreen to control various systems in the car, including audio and communications. The touchscreen is joined by a mousepad affair between the seats and I’m told that this advanced tech will be standard on all bar the base model when the car reaches Ireland before the end of the year. Next month, we’ll have a chance to drive the car on Irish roads and experience the new 1.6 litre turbo, which delivers a very impressive 170 bhp and is said to have exceptional fuel economy. A 70 litre tank makes this an ideal choice for company drivers …

Read More »
Opel designer, Mark Adams at the launch of his creation, the Monza. Looking on is Opel CEO, Dr Karl-Thomas Neumann.

Opel Monza reincarnated

Opel revealed their latest concept car, the Monza, at a pre-show conference on Monday. Taking its name from the Opel back catalogue, the Monza is an interpretation of how future Opels will look. The interior, too, is a statement, using LED projection technology for the instrument panel and infotainment systems to create one of the most advanced cabins ever seen on a car. 18 LED projectors create an infinitely variable environment and given that they are controlled by software, it’s theoretically possible to introduce an entirely new theme with a simple firmware upgrade. For power, the Monza relies on an electric powertrain, but with a natural gas powered range extender, much like the Ampera in principle. Opel acknowledge that the gull wing doors are fiendishly difficult to engineer and produce, so they will never make production, but this is the car that will inspire Opels to come. Even the phone connection is well thought out, with three modes available: Me, …

Read More »
error: Content is protected !!