The Independent Garage Association (IGA) is urging the Government to remove the six-month MOT extension with immediate effect, following the Prime Minister’s announcement that further social distancing measures will be relaxed from 4 July.
Following the news that the DVSA will restart heavy vehicle testing from 4 July 2020, Tyres & Accessories understands that the government Department for Transport (DfT) is consulting on ending the rolling MOT extension initiated at the start of lockdown in March 2020. While DVSA published a statement on 19 June 2020 relating to restarting HGV tests, DfT has not yet answered T&A’s car MOT-related questions on the subject.
However, when we approached the National Tyre Distributors Association for a tyre industry perspective on the reports, the NTDA gave is full support to proposals to end the current temporary car MOT extension currently being given to the expiry dates of MOT tests as they become due. Specifically, the NTDA called for government to “restart with immediate effect” the normal MOT process.
Led by Senior Electronics Development Engineer, Michael Crookes, the introduction of the new electronic testing facility and role will “enable PCL to test and develop electronic products in-house at its state-of-the-art Sheffield HQ”, according to the company.
Continued disruption, restructuring and re-shaping of the automotive industry will be required to make increasing levels of R&D affordable whilst simultaneously representing a major growth opportunity in the year ahead, according to engineering consultancy Horiba MIRA.
Following the company’s recent acquisition of high-precision tyre balancing solution Magnum+, Martins Industries sent the system’s tempered glass beads to TÜV SÜD for testing. The tests were performed in December 2019 and the results that came later in January have confirmed that Magnum+ is approved for safety of the tyre, valves, TPMS.
The UK government’s £300 million-odd funding for connected and autonomous vehicle (CAV) projects is unlikely to establish the country as a leader in CAV technology. However, it is well positioned to become a global hub for CAV testing and regulatory development, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.
Horiba Europe GmbH has successfully completed the acquisition of FuelCon AG. FuelCon – now to be called Horiba FuelCon – has become part of Horiba Automotive Test Systems – a leading supplier in the fields of engine, driveline, brake and emissions test systems.
Through the installation of six new testing machines at its Tire and Wheel testing lab in Suzhou, China, rubber and plastics testing and consulting service provider Smithers Rapra has increased the facility’s ability to server tyre and wheel customers. The new equipment is said to boost capacity at the lab by 35 per cent and broadens its testing capabilities to include cleated tyre and wheel endurance testing, wheel impact, salt spray and tyre air permeation tests.
Horiba Mira has improved its capabilities in Electromagnetic Compatibility testing, investing in a range of new components to add to its world-class facilities. As part of the £0.5m investment, Horiba Mira has acquired a range of products which support the latest developments in plug-in vehicle technology.
Six tyre manufacturers – Bridgestone Americas, Continental Tire, Cooper Tire & Rubber, Goodyear Tire & Rubber, Hankook Tire and Michelin North America – and independent, third party laboratory Smithers Rapra have announced a testing partnership to introduce a new MTS Flat-Trac CT Plus tyre test system at the Smithers Tire and Wheel Test Center in Ravenna, Ohio.
Smithers Rapra has enchanced its tread wear testing capabilities for passenger, light truck and commercial vehicle tyres at its test centre in Ravenna, Ohio, USA. According to the company, the upgraded equipment and software can run a wide variety of drive profiles while supporting benchmarking and development requirements.
Following revelations of Mitsubishi Motors Corporation’s use of excessive tyre pressure to influence fuel consumption tests in April, Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism sent out surveys to 41 manufacturers whose vehicles possess type certification in Japan. The manufacturers were required to report back on test practices by 18 May. Suzuki shared with the ministry that “some discrepancies” were found between the Ministry’s regulations covering emission and fuel efficiency and the methods it actually uses. Suzuki denies that these incongruities are evidence of data manipulating, cheating or, in its own words, “acts of injustice.”
A simple “trick” – or perhaps we should say “cheating” or “fraud” – has been common practice in the European automotive industry, to the displeasure of environmental organisations: Place a car with excessive tyre pressure on a dynamometer and – voilà – lower fuel consumption levels and emissions are recorded thanks to the ‘optimised’ rolling resistance. Mitsubishi has conceded carrying out this practice in Japan with test data submitted to the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism. This time round it doesn’t affect, as in the case of Volkswagen and its ‘cheat’ software, millions of vehicles, rather ‘only’ 625,000 small cars, the majority of these off-take production for Nissan.
Formula One’s teams have driven more than 6,020km on various development versions of Pirelli’s 2016 range, including the new ultrasoft compound. Over 1084 laps, McLaren’s Stoffel Vandoorne set the best time over the 12 hour non-stop session. The session took place in expected bright sunshine and warm temperatures, starting out at around 24°C ambient (35°C asphalt) and reaching 28°C and 40°C respectively by lunchtime. The next testing session, in which Pirelli will focus on its wet tyres, will take place at Circuit Paul Ricard, France on 25-26 January.