The Next Gear Thursday news

Toyota retains crown for most valuable automotive brand


Toyota was again named the world’s most valuable automotive brand in the recently published Best Global Brands 2012 by Interbrand. This year’s report sees Toyota’s brand valuation by Interbrand surge 9% and securing an overall Top 10 spot across all industries.

According to Interbrand, Toyota’s success is due largely to the continued customer loyalty, an impressive line-up of environmentally friendly products (1) such as the Toyota Prius, and a strengthening appeal with younger customers.

In June this year, Toyota also emerged on top for the second year running as the Best Global Green Brand. Interbrand highlighted Toyota’s continued determination to maintain environmental sustainability as a top management priority as a key part to the company’s success story.

Interbrand looks at the on-going investment and management of the brand as a business asset when compiling the Best Global Brands report. The methodology of the report takes into account a multitude of ways in which a brand connects and adds value to the organisation.

The 2012 edition of the Toyota European Sustainability Report is now available online:


Jeep Grand Cherokee S Limited Unveiled

The exclusive new Jeep Grand Cherokee S Limited has been unveiled at the Paris Motor Show ahead of its anticipated Irish debut in early 2013. The S Limited was designed specifically for markets such as Ireland where prohibitive taxation on the purchase, ownership and fuelling of vehicles such as the Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8 put them beyond the reach of most consumers.

The Jeep Grand Cherokee S Limited combines the aggressive looks of the SRT8, courtesy of its exclusive body kit, 20-inch wheels and unique black detailing (grilles, headlamps, tinted glass, etc.) with the frugal refinement of the diesel-powered Limited and Overland models.

Equipped with Jeep’s all-new, MultiJet II-equipped, 3.0 V6 CRD turbo-diesel engine, the S Limited offers impressive fuel economy (8.3L/100km on the combined cycle) and Band F emissions but thanks to its muscular 241hp and 550Nm output, plus its Quatra-TracTM II all-wheel drive system, performance hasn’t been sacrificed in the name of lower running costs: 0-100km/h takes just 8.2 seconds and top speed is limited to just over 200km/h.

The interior of the S Limited has also been reworked to match the sporty exterior revisions, with a heated sports steering wheel; leather and suede SRT8-style seats; carbon fibre door and dashboard inserts and special aluminium pedals, all as standard. Other standard features include a five-speed automatic transmission; Quadra-LiftTM air suspension; Selec-TerrainTM chassis management; a UconnectTM infotainment/satnav system with 19 Harman Kardon® speakers; adaptive cruise control with forward collision mitigation and blind spot detection safety systems.

Final specification and pricing for the Jeep Grand Cherokee S Limited will be announced closer to the vehicles expected launch in Ireland in early 2013, pending the announcement of the government’s vehicle taxation policy for next year.


Johnson & Perrott Mahonpoint Appointed Main Peugeot Dealers

Peugeot in Ireland have announced the appointment of Johnson & Perrott, Mahonpoint, Cork City to the Peugeot Dealer Network, headed by CEO, Mark Whitaker. Founded in 1810, Johnson & Perrott Motor Group is one of Ireland’s leading motor retailers and is owned by members of the Whitaker family, 5th and 6th generation descendants of Mr James Johnson, who purchased the business in 1860. Mr Johnson led the company’s venture into the world of automobiles in 1903 when he sold his first motor car. Today, having recently passed its 200th anniversary, the Group has interests in vehicle hire, motor dealerships and fleet management. It represents a number of leading car franchises at its two dealerships in Cork City: Mahonpoint Retail Park and Douglas Road. Speaking at the signing of contracts at Gowan House, Peugeot Managing Director, George Harbourne said, “The appointment of Johnson & Perrott Mahon Point will undoubtedly strengthen the Peugeot brand in Cork and will serve to increase our brand visibility and market share in Ireland. I am very pleased to welcome Mark and Andrew Whitaker to the Peugeot Dealer Network and I wish them every success for the future as Main Peugeot Dealers.” Mark Whitaker, Johnson & Perrott CEO commented, “We are delighted to welcome the Peugeot brand to Johnson & Perrott Mahonpoint. The addition of Peugeot to our existing line up of brands provides even greater choice to our customers while continuing our long-standing commitment to both quality and value.” The dealership’s new, extensive 3,500 sq ft Peugeot showroom is now open for business, housing the full range of Peugeot passenger cars and light commercial vehicles, including the newly arrived Peugeot 208. A range of quality used Peugeot vehicles is on site. Fully trained Peugeot technical experts are on hand and a wide range of Peugeot spare parts and accessories are stocked. Opening Hours for the Dealership are 8:30am to 5:45pm Monday to Friday and 10:00 to 4:00pm on a Saturday. Pictured from left to right (front) are: Mark Whitaker, CEO Johnson & Perrott Motor Group and George Harbourne, Peugeot Managing Director. From left to right (back row) are: Des Cannon, Peugeot Sales and Marketing Director and Andrew Whitaker, Sales Manager at Johnson & Perrott Motor Group.


Winter Olympics New Events

Rally School Ireland in cooperation with BMW now offers wheelchair users two new exciting events.

● Advanced Mobility covering collision avoidance, skid control operates throughout the year.


●Winter Driver Training is a perfect way to boost your confidence and ability behind the wheel as we enter the winter months ahead. Operating from October to March.


“We have kept the classroom stuff to a minimum and jammed the Advanced / Winter Driving courses with practical experience carried out in a controlled safe environment.” David Smyth.


BMW Driving Experiences are available to people of all abilities and are a great benefit for your every day driving giving you reduced reaction times, improved car control and the confidence to be safer in slippery conditions. “The thrill of getting to slide and recover a car and the experience of driving on winter tyres and the massive levels of grip they provide when it’s cold and wet was amazing.


Course costs

€175 BMW Winter Driving Training

€195 BMW Advanced Mobility Experience


Our facility is level 3 I accessible (with push / pull hand and steering wheel controls)


Supercar Courses


The best gift for a wheelchair user for Christmas!

Rally School Ireland also offers Supercar Experiences in the Ferrari F355 and Porsche 911 or why not try the Subaru Impreza Turbo Rally Driving experience for wheelchair users.

Call 047 89098 to book!


Super Car Experience:   1 car €110, 2 car €220, 3 car €295

Rally School Ireland in conjunction with BMW offers a range of Winter Driver Training and BMW Advanced Driver Training Experiences in a 1 Series, 3 Series, 5 Series and M3. Winter Driver Training is also available in MINI Countryman vehicles.

Contact David Smyth on telephone 1890 269 569 mobile 086 8544018 email


Tom Tom maps comes to Android

Last month, Android users got their first glimpse of TomTom’s new app at its preview during the IFA consumer electronics show. Today the TomTom Navigation app for Android is available to download from Google Play for the first time. The new app is an addition to TomTom’s existing, highly-rated navigation app for iPhone and brings TomTom’s world-class navigation to millions more smartphone users.


Available at a special introductory price, the TomTom Navigation app for Android has been designed especially for drivers. The latest TomTom maps are included and stored offline, which means that users don’t have to worry about losing a signal in the middle of their journey or roaming charges when travelling abroad. The app includes, free quarterly map updates which ensures that drivers always have the latest map on their smartphone.


“TomTom has a history of making great navigation applications. Our existing iPhone app gets fantastic customer feedback and regularly wins awards,” said Corinne Vigreux, Managing Director, TomTom Consumer. Today, we are bringing this world-class navigation experience to millions of Android smartphone users for the first time.”


For more information about TomTom Navigation for Android, please visit our website.