The inappropriate fancy dress of motoring, every month
STARS UNITE FOR CARS
Following the success of Band Aid 20 and the Tsunami Earthquake Appeal, Sniff Petrol has learned that a host of musical stars are to join together once again to help another tragic cause - Jaguar cars.
"This could be our most desperate plea to date," said a man who we think was once in a band, because he had a 1980s hairstyle and leather socks. "I was watching the news the other night when I saw a story about the terrible conditions in which Jaguar is attempting to survive. It really is heart breaking to see the dignity with which they soldier on against all odds. They are literally starving� for cash. I knew that I had to do something. And as luck would have it, Sting owned me a tenner anyway so I gave him a call".
Gordon Sting is just one of the stars who will be lending his distinctive vocal talents to the new charity record, rumoured to be called Cat Aid. Other celebrities believed to be taking part include the quiet one out of Wham!, the quiet one out of Erasure, the quiet one out of the Pet Shop Boys, and Mags from A-Ha who had this message for fans; "Please look at the desperate trouble Jaguar is in. The dollar is weak, they have too many factories, the D-pillar design on the S-type remains extremely contrived. But with your help, we can save Jaguar. Just �20,000 buys an X-type 2-litre. That's enough to help the company justify prostituting its name on a smaller car, and to get back on its feet so that the next X-type might be less cloyingly retro. Please, do all you can".
As yet, the actual song to support these stars' efforts has not been heard, but as Sniff Petrol went to special internet press we exclusively learned that popular cause-whore Bono had agreed to take part in the Jaguar charity record, on the understanding that he could reprise his famous line from Band Aid, with the lyrics amended to: "Tonight, why God is it them / Instead of Bee Em Double Yooooo?"
A different sort of Bono,
CATERHAM IS SOLD TO SOMEONE
The world of small, minimalist sports cars with numbers in their name was in shock this week with news that popular Lotus Seven maker Caterham has been sold. The new buyer is a group led by Anwar Sadat, the former president of Egypt who was assassinated in 1981. "That's right my friends," he said. "I own Caterham now", although on reflection this statement might actually have been made by Sniff Petrol's friend Mark doing a silly voice.
The price paid for the low-slung Surrey based firm has not been revealed, but sources say the new owners may have saved themselves some money by purchasing Caterham in kit form. However, whilst this may meant a reduced price, it also means the new owners will have to assemble the company themselves over the course of several weekends.
"This is not a problem," said someone close to the ground. "We have already received several large boxes containing the basics of Caterham and we have cleared a space in the garage ready to begin assembly. First we must lay out the offices, not forgetting to plumb in the lavatories before we attach the stationary cupboard to the back of the small kitchenette area".
However, some observers have been quick to offer words of caution: "I once built a kit car company myself," said one exdustry inpert. "Everything seemed to be going fine until I put the roof on the main office, then I realised some bits left over including two swivel chairs, five pot plants and a secretary."
Meanwhile, some commentators believe the biggest challenge will come when Caterham's new owners come to install plans for expanding the model range. Although Caterham is well designed and should be easy to put together correctly, adding plans such as these could cause a kink in what made the name famous and cause everything to become overstretched, ultimately buggering up the entire company.
A different sort of kit, yesterday
JAPANESE CAR AD STRANGENESS
Fans of amusing advertisements are in for a treat next month as unpopular cable TV channel UK Knockers & Cars broadcasts a one-off special dedicated to the wacky world of Japanese car ads. The programme is part of UK K&C's new Foreigners Are Funny season which will run through the whole of February and includes such highlights as The Spanish Are Lazy, The French Smell, And Other Facts About Europe Revealed; Around The World In 80 Boobs; and Jim Davidson's Racist Runaround, in which the unlovable right-wing cock runs around various foreign cities being rude about the locals until hopefully someone smacks him in his stupid gimlet eyed face with a car jack. In the meantime, here are some of the adverts that will feature in the Japanese thing.
The Detroit Show is the biggest in the US of States. Here are some words about it.
One of the real stars of this year's Detroit Show was the sensational Chrysler Firepower concept. "Firepower is a great name for an all American car," crowed a spokesman. "Because the US of A has the biggest fire power in the world. Yes sir, nobody messes with Uncle Sam". Another spokesman later denied that, like American foreign policy, the Viper chassised Firepower would be stupid and prone to going off in the wrong direction.
Another show highlight was the return of the famous Dodge Charger name. But how did this four-door recreation of a muscle car legend actually come about? "Just the good ol' boys, Never meanin' no harm," said a spokesmaan. "Beats all you've ever saw, been in trouble with the law since the day they was born". He later denied that they wouldn't change if they could and would continue with fightin' the system like a true modern day Robin Hood.
Neatly sidestepping a small puddle of excitement on the sidewalk of Tedious Boulevard was the new Lincoln Zephyr. "Oh my God," said a spokesmmmn from an unspecified Japanese manufacturer. "This might explain that break-in we experienced at one of our design studios about three years ago in which someone stole a load of design sketches. Fortunately they were all extremely dull and from 1997. Hahahahaha".
Coming straight from the Oh God, I Think I'm Losing The Will To Live file is the new VW Beetle Ragster concept. "We were worried that many people had forgotten about the new Beetle," said a spokesmananan. "So what better way to remind the public that it's still there being cutesy and annoying, than with this extremely cutesy and annoying concept car!" After Sniff Petrol had punched him to the ground, we were especially impressed with none of this car. Jesus, why can't they think of some properly interesting cars instead of this re-hashed pile of shit.
One of the more intriguing concept cars at the show was the Ford Synus which is a sort of Transit Connect made to look like a cartoon safe for no apparent reason. However, it was the car's name that caused real controversy: "Look, it's pronounced 'sinuous'," said a spokesmmmmmaaaannn angrily. "It has nothing to do the cavities in your head that fill with snot when you've got a cold". Rumours about that Ford's next concept will be a 4x4 in association with a top fashion house called the Dior Here, spelt Diarrhoea.
Meanwhile, at another arm of GM the big news was the Pontiac G6 convertible and coupe. "We're real proud of the convertible in particular," said a spokesmananananananananan. "Previously a folding metal roof was only available on expensive automobiles such as the Mercedes SLK and Lexus SC430. Now Pontiac has made that technology affordable for the first time". Sniff Petrol pointed out that actually Peugeot, Renault and Opel have already been selling this exact same arrangement on affordable cars in Europe, but our man seemed confused. "You-rope? What the hell is that, you goddam Commie?"
DETROIT NEWS IN BRIEF
Gnarled GM development boss Bob Lutz refused to give any interviews to journalists, but was happy to wrestle them. "I got skills," the 97-year-old growled!
At the DaimlerChrysler press briefing, new Merc boss Dr Eckhard Cordes suffered an embarrassing moment when, minutes after promising to address Mercedes quality issues, his own arm fell off!
Malcolm Bricklin, the gullwing sports car designer who wasn't John DeLorean, has vowed to bring Chinese-made cars into the US by 2007. As the man who first imported Yugo to North America, sources say this latest venture saw Bricklin searching the globe before he found somewhere that made cars crappy enough!
Ford design boss Janet Mays has been posted to work in London, apparently to soak up the city's design influences. However, Detroit insiders suggested that the real reason might have been because Bill Ford told him to "fuck off"!
Handy money saving hints for the year ahead
1. Save money on expensive parking sensors - simply cover your back bumper with whoopee cushions!
2. Want a new, supermini sized BMW Mini but can't afford the steep asking price? Simply buy an original Mini and park it closer to your house!
3. Slapheads can forget expensive and ineffective rain sensing wipers by simply driving around with the sunroof open. You'll soon know when it's raining through the 'rain sensor' on your head!
4. Forget those fancy trip computers. Simply tape an old calculator to the dash and use that instead. It'll probably be more accurate, and if you're really bored you can turn it upside down and use it to spell out BOOBS!
5. Can't afford fancy darkness sensing headlights? Simply use your eyes, you dimwit
A different sort of whoopee cushion,
MONTOYA IS FAT
There was controversy at fourth-of-the-losers F1 team McLaren this week with news that increasingly lard arsed Juan Pablo Montoya is having trouble fitting into his new car. Sources at the team's HQ say the Columbian driver has been quick to blame engineers for the problem, reportedly saying "The car is too small. This is not my fault because nothing ever is". Spies say the hot headed racer then stormed out of the workshop, only to return ten minutes later with a KFC Zinger Tower and some pies.
Fortunately, quick thinking McLaren staff may have found an answer in the unlikely shape of a Nigel Mansell spec MP4/10/B, last used sparingly by the Brummie former world champion back in 1995. "This car was built to accommodate the larger driving talent," said one source. "A quick re-spray in silver should do the trick. For old time's sake perhaps we can persuade Juan to grow a moustache and develop an even more whiney voice".
A different sort of fatty,
� 2005. Sniff Petrol every month. Next issue 4 February
Written by Sniff Petrol, with thanks to Bobski and Poo