Monthly Archives: May 2011

JuneNewsPorscheThe are some significant improvements coming to the Porsche Cayenne range, with the Cayenne diesel getting a second generation engine which the company claims will offer greater efficiency and lower CO2 emissions. While the 3-litre diesel engine retains the same displacement, it delivers slightly more power (up five bhp to 245bhp), a marginal increase in fuel economy and a six gram drop in emissions to 189 g/km. A new turbocharger and a revamped injection system offer better throttle response. It also means the engine is 20kg lighter than the previous model. Given that only a few years ago the German manufacturer was adamant that there would never be a ‘diesel Porsche’ it is interesting to see these developments coming through. Indeed, the Cayenne S Hybrid has also been modified which means that under certain conditions it is possible, even from a cold start, to drive and manoeuvre at low speed on the electric power alone. Originally, you first had to start the engine and get everything to operating temperature.

Thankfully, however, Porsche is not about to ignore the performance end of the market, even when it comes to the Cayenne, and a new Turbo Powerkit joins the vehicle’s long list of options. This new option from Porsche Exclusive is for the Cayenne Turbo and boosts maximum power by a significant 40bhp to a whopping 540bhp. Maximum torque is also increased by 50Nm to 750Nm. This boosts the acceleration, and also gives the beast a top speed of 176mph. Interestingly in this revamp, fuel consumption and emissions remain the same.

JuneProdLineA new range of Dyneema Winch Lines has been launched. The company behind the ropes, Malvern’s English Braids, chose the recent British Indoor 4×4 Show to showcase its new product line-up.  English Braids has been manufacturing braided cords and ropes for over 40 years. The new products are its first range of Dyneema Winch Lines aimed specifically at the 4×4 market. Speaking about the launch, Steve Hayman of English Braids said, “We were really pleased with the volume of interest, and the feedback we got was excellent.”

The guys at Extreme 4×4 have obviously been busy of late. The Land Rover accessories specialist has just released details of a range of new items in its product line-up. Here is a flavour of what’s available:

Discovery 2 Winch Bumper

A new winch bumper for use with a Warn 8274-50, featuring two optional swivel recovery eyes, two built-in jacking points and a choice of auxiliary lights. This is a tidy piece of kit for the serious mud-plugger, costing £330.45 plus VAT.

JuneProdKitLampsMini Halogen Work Lamps

This H3 round work lamp is just 84mm in diameter, and provides a handy addition to any working 4×4. It comes with black plastic housing, and features a metal reflector for enhanced brightness. The work lamp takes a 12-volt 55-watt bulb and is TUV approved. Each lamp is zinc plated to provide resistance from corrosion, and costs £14.69 plus VAT.

JuneStaffShionPicShion Scudamore – contributor


The TM has been on the back burner for quite a while, my last report appearing in the December issue last year, but now it’s parked in front of the house there is more than a little pressure to get on with it! And I am pleased to say that at last there has been some progress.

A phone call to Dave Crouch proved to be particularly worthwhile as he was able to unearth some fresh panels for the cab; including much needed wings and an air cleaner stack. The wings were picked up for a very reasonable £350. There’s still some work to do before they can be fitted, so when I have finished repairing the cab lower front wings these are to be dispatched to Ian Gilby’s spray shop for hosing down in G4 Orange two pack. Some doors should then follow next month, budget permitting, which should save a lot of messing around trying to patch up and repair the old ones. The result will be a bit of instant progress, always important in a big project to ‘see’ some results and give you the encouragement to keep going!

AnnLockleyAnn Lockley – contributor

JuneStaffAnneWhat a month! Another 1700 miles into this journey means another 1700 miles of chasing mechanical issues – thank goodness for friends, quick and accurate mechanics, and www.rangerovers.net! After arriving in Phoenix, Arizona with a new fuel pump and filter but continued sputtering, bucking, and stalling problems, friends Chad Manz and Doug Lawyer from the Arizona Land Rover Owner and I swapped out a few parts in an attempt to fix the old girl. No such luck. We were supposed to leave for Hole in the Rock trail in southern Utah in two days but with it being literally the middle of nowhere, Kels stayed home and I warmed Doug’s passenger seat. Thank you, Doug!

LouiseLimbLouise Limb – contributor

JuneStaffLouiseMindful of last month’s comparison between my neat, short wheelbase Grand Vitara and an all too compact wood based storage solution, I was beginning to become quite paranoid about the utility aspect of my SUV, the 3Door GV having neither the off road respect that the Jimny has earned nor the sturdy pantechnicon-like usefulness of the long wheelbase version. 

That was until the other day, when a small boy on his way home from school in leafy Ilkley pointed at the chaos just visible through my open tailgate and in a stage whisper,  confided in his mother, ‘ that car’s got a big boot, hasn’t it!’ I felt gratified and proceeded then to embarrass all of us by replying, ‘yes, it is very useful!’. They scuttled off as quickly as they could and I continued to search the jumble for a lost gilet while keeping a tight hold of my keys…

BobCookeBob Cooke – contributor

JuneStaffBobEugene had been tucked away in the garage for a couple of months, but the sight of a sudden flurry of convertibles cruising about with their owners taking advantage of the superbly summery weather in the weeks leading up to The Wedding, proved too much of a spur to ignore. Trouble is, one of the reasons I hadn’t taken Eugene for a drive for a while is that the old truck had developed a misfire and with so much else to do during the early days of spring – tidy the workshop, weed the garden, sit around in the sun with a chilled beer – I hadn’t got round to seeing what the matter was.

One fear was that it might be a stuck valve, the recurrence of a problem that developed when TV personality Bradley Walsh drove it about at high speed in low range during the making of a television programme, working the primitive old valve train past its limits; or it could be a fouled spark plug, which though easier to fix in the short term might point to a more serious underlying problem.

GarryStuartGarry Stuart – contributor


Last month I described the journey to Seven Sisters in South Wales, which is a fair old hike from Preston. The following weekend I knew that I was to go back to Wales to shoot the Whitbread Challenge Weekend and that it was at a town called Llandysul, which I quickly Googled, and ascertained that it was, as I thought, in Mid to North Wales, not too far South of Wrexham. Cool I thought, only a two hour trip, no sweat.

The day before I set out I logged onto Whitbread Offroad’s website to get a few more details and found a helpful map. Not recognising any of the place names I zoomed out to get a better idea of the location and was surprised to see blue sea appearing to the west of Llandysul which now appeared to have migrated to South West Wales close to Lampeter! It then dawned upon me that there were at least two Llandysuls in Wales and I was not going to the one closest to me. It was actually further into SW Wales than last weekend’s job and departure times had to be brought forward significantly and the easy journey that I was looking forward to had increased from two to over five hours.

HIlsEverittHils Everitt – Editor at Large


As the Jimny was about to be whisked away back to Suzuki, I thought it was time to sneak in a trip to the Lake District for some quality walking and a bit of green lane driving, as it hadn’t been off tarmac for some while. Playing about in the snow a few months ago was all very well, but I wanted some scenic pics of it and get that low ‘box working for one last time before it left for good.

The five-and-a-half-hour drive from Kent to the Keswick area was a pretty uneventful affair as I took the M11/A1 route then A66 from Scotch Corner. I always use this way as the drive west along the A66 is far more pleasant than the traffic jam that would be the M25 if I opted for the M40/M6 alternative.

HIlsEverittHils Everitt – Editor at Large


The other day somebody asked me: “How’s your Grand running these days? You’ve had quite a few problems with it lately.”

He was not wrong. Regular readers will know about my last 12 months with my 2001 2.7 CRD Limited Grand Cherokee, that have been expensive and a right pain in the fleshiest part of the body. Throughout that time, it has visited three different garages. My good mate who owns Central Tyre & Exhaust did some serious diagnostics, which meant it then had to go to an auto ‘box specialist, and then it was a trip to the excellent guys at the Chrysler Jeep dealership Whitehouse of Tonbridge who did a swift job or replacing two injectors and cleaning up a dreadful mess under the cylinder head. All these were in a reasonable distance of my home and I either borrowed one of my mate’s hilarious courtesy cars or there was a train station very nearby to make the whole experience bearable and cost-effective.