PetrolBlog at the SMMT Test Day 2012

Major Waffle New cars

Is it that time of the year again? No, not Christmas, but the annual SMMT Test Day at the Millbrook Proving Ground in Bedfordshire. A chance to drive nearly 140 cars on a series of test tracks, including the famous Hill Route and High Speed Circuit. Doesn't sound like a bad day, does it? So maybe it's Christmas after all?

There's also the small matter of having the opportunity to hobnob with 300 motoring journalists and bloggers, as well as chatting with the press and media teams of 33 different car manufacturers.

The event is run by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), the trade association for motoring in the UK. It exists to support and promote the interests of the UK automotive industry at home and around the world. You can read more about the SMMT here.

[caption id="attachment_7777" align="alignleft" width="300"]Millbrook Proving Ground Millbrook Proving Ground, Bedfordshire[/caption]

A list of vehicles available for test drive has been provided and it makes for a mouthwatering sight.

Sadly, with the best will in the world, it's going to be impossible to drive 140 cars in eight hours. I'm pretty sure 17½ cars an hour is beyond anyone, although I like to think that a Renault Twizy would account for the required half a car. But then a Mercedes-Benz Actros and trailer surely accounts for more than one car?

Whatever, I don't think I'll be experiencing 140 cars today!

A full list of cars can be found here: Full list of vehicles available at the SMMT Test Day 2012.

To help matters, I've highlighted the following cars as my priorities for the day:

  • Chrysler Delta
  • Citroën DS5 DSport Hybrid4
  • Citroën C1
  • Citroën Berlingo Multispace
  • Fiat Panda TwinAir
  • Hyundai Veloster
  • Kia Soul
  • Kia Cee'd
  • Land Rover Range Rover Evoque
  • Mazda MX-5
  • Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 4x4
  • Mercedes-Benz Unimog
  • Renault Twizy
  • Skoda Citigo
  • Subaru Legacy Sport Tourer
  • Subaru BRZ
  • Toyota Yaris SR
  • Vauxhall Maloo 6.2 V8
  • Volkwagen up!
  • Volkswagen Beetle

That's a more manageable list of 20 cars, although even that may be ambitious. Check back after the event to see how I got on.

In the meantime, I will endeavour to update my twitter account throughout the day @MajorGav. You can also follow events on the 24th May via the #TestDay hashtag. Unlike last year, the weather is looking rather good, so it's time to fire up the Saab and head to Millbrook. Should be a good day.