Big fry… since when did a tinny have a windscreen and fibreglass hull?Seen the new McDonald’s – sorry, Maccas – advert on telly that paints the fast-food giant as the quintessential Aussie tuck shop?
You know, the one where the tradies in the HQ ute harass a couple of wallopers and don’t get their battered old Holden defected off the road. Or themselves capsicum sprayed.
Anyway, there’s a scene where a father and his daughter (at least, we hope it’s his daughter) are walking back to their car and boat, the latter being described in the voice-over as a tinny.
Now, we’re not claiming to be marine engineers here, but a tinny is a small aluminium tub with an outboard and a faint aroma of dead fish. The boat in the ad appears to be made of fibreglass and runs to luxuries such as a windscreen and a stern-drive rather than an outboard motor. This could explain why the product pushed towards you by a spotty yoof in a silly hat never looks like the one in the poster above the counter.Inside running
Audi interiors have long been applauded for the logical, accurate information they convey to the driver. But now it seems the company just can’t bring itself to be anything less than utterly accurate … even when it’s trying not to be.
The latest word from Ingolstadt head office is news of a yearly sales total for 2012 with the word ”around” in the headline. So we figured the news would be of sales ”around” the 1.5 million mark.
Well, it was and it wasn’t. Our guess was on the money, but was w-a-y too vague for Audi, which described its 2012 total as ”around 1,455,100” sales. Give or take …Rules are rules
Still with the nice people at Audi, the good news just keeps coming. Now, it seems, the 1770-kilogram, almost-five-metres-long, 220kW, $143,800 A7 Sportback can be had with – wait for it – five whole seats. According to an Audi spokesman, the A7 Sportback has been a four seater since its launch in mid-2011, but now you can fit five backsides in the big hardtop.
But it’s not Audi’s fault. No, you can thank Australia’s capricious Australian Design Rule requirements. While other markets have been offering a five-seat version of the A7 Sportback from day one, the seat itself didn’t conform to our peculiar regulations. The problem was the provision of child-seat anchor points. While foreign-market A7 Sportbacks had two such restraint mounting points (as did ours in four-seat form), the local rules demand a child-restraint anchor-point for each and every seating position in the rear.
And since the Australian requirement is one out and one back, there was no rush within Audi to re-engineer the rear seat to allow for the extra mounting-point.
Is it, perhaps, not time our local design rules fell into line with the rest of the world?Drivers wanted
Still on our rules and regs, and it seems the inflexibility of our law makers has us missing out on newfangled gadgets – at least initially. This week, in discussing its upcoming driverless car technology – the first iteration of which will appear in the new S-Class limousine later this year – Mercedes-Benz says Australia wouldn’t be the place to introduce the ground-breaking technology.
”We would not start with these sensitive technologies in Australia, and I think not in the States, too,” says Professor Thomas Weber, the head of research and development for the brand. While he says autonomous driving will be developed globally, the potential legal minefield that is the good ol’ US of A was just too much. And Australia? We think that would also raise pulses beyond acceptable levels. After all, those crazy Germans somehow manage to keep themselves alive at speeds Australian authorities think drivers will self combust.Stretching it
Stretch limos are an acquired taste, let’s be honest. And if you’re transporting a group of young, er, ladies to a hen’s night, then maybe a stretched Hummer or Chrysler 300C is the perfect solution.
But can anybody explain to us the recent rash of stretched limos in the classifieds lately? They include a stretched FJ Holden, an HSV Commodore Group A with an extra few metres grafted between its axles, and – the ultimate sacrilege – an early ”split-window” Volkswagen Kombi with what looked like a whole extra Kombi welded into its midriff.
The original release of this article first appeared on the website of Hangzhou Night Net.