My Car Quest

September 27, 2021

There Will Always Be An England – Right?

by Wallace Wyss –

I used to love that saying, particularly when thinking of how, with stiff upper lips and eyes to the sky, they withstood the Blitz during WWII.

But now that the Prime Minister has announced no internal combustion cars will be sold new starting with 2035, I think of how many English firms can make that deadline? True Bentley has already announced plans to meet the new standard and since their cars are known for being quiet it fits in, as does Rolls Royce. Bentley might have to drop their high performance lines but on the other hand maybe enthusiasts will like the car so much they won’t miss the RHUMPA.

1956 Bentley R-Type Continental by H. J. Mulliner

1956 Bentley R-Type Continental by H. J. Mulliner

But Jaguar, I think at least the F type, had a bit of robustness to the exhaust but the question is will people still buy it if it’s totally silent? Most vulnerable of all are British performance luxury marques McLaren and Aston Martin. Both are on shaky ground even with internal combustion cars. McLaren had to sell their HQ and Aston was forced to use off the shelf Mercedes AMG engines so they aren’t purebred anymore.

Look at this list of the top ten British automakers. Will any of them last if they no longer have internal combustion engines? I’m betting one third fail:

– Aston Martin (1913–present)

– Bentley (1919–present)

– Jaguar (1935–present)

– Land Rover (1948–present)

– Lotus (1952–present)

– McLaren (1985–present)

– Mini (1959–present)

– Nissan UK (1986–present)

Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato

Aston Martin DB4 GT Zagato

Of course Nissan, Rolls and Bentley have the money to design cars for the rest of the world that will also work in England. But companies with a thin foreign market will have a tough time. Oh sure, English factory workers could be retrained to work in other factories, but to me when three or four automakers die, that will tarnish the saying “There will always be an England” because now I can’t count on the interpretation “There will always be English auto makers.”

If you think that it is impossible for a major country not to make cars, look at Australia. When Holden closed, they tried to make a go of it with government help but it was no use. Now the popfulence has to consider Japanese cars or maybe even (egad!) Chinese cars. (Great–buy capital goods from Communist countries who want to take you over!)

Mini Cooper

Mini Cooper

And I don’t think the Prime Minister added up the jobs that will be lost. No more engine makers are needed. No more mufflers. No more tailpipes. No more transmissions. I would say 30% of British auto workers won’t have a job once this law goes into effect. But wait a minute–won’t they be needed to keep the internal combustion cars working? Ah not so much. The same politicians that push this philosophy will pass laws that will result in the hunting down of every last internal combustion car and killing it in its tracks as if it were a rabid wild beast.

The California governor is also pursuing this but being from an elite upper class, he is not worried about his mad quest, but you can bet he won’t have to worry about his family having jobs. But he has gone further than England’s PM–he wants all oil and natural gas drilling gone from the State by 2025. Add a few hundred thousands workers to the unemployment line.

1958 Jaguar XK 150

1958 Jaguar XK 150

I like clean air but I think these politicians are envisioning a halcyon age that won’t happen after they kill all these industries. I maintain if they talk to a geologist the geologist can show them rocks from eras hundreds and thousands of years ago when the earth also had global warming. Before there was the burning of coal, and gases. It’s a natural cycle and re-occurs every so often but these politicians are grabbing power by blaming the oil and natural gas industries and cars for global warming.

And so it is. The do-gooders can shut down a 100-year old industry like it doesn’t matter. Well, those unemployed workers can vote and there might be a swing the other way…

Let us know what you think in the Comments.

Wallace Wyss

THE AUTHOR: Wallace Wyss was raised in Detroit the son of an auto worker.
 
 
 
 

McLaren F1

McLaren F1

Summary
There Will Always Be An England - Right?
Article Name
There Will Always Be An England - Right?
Description
The British Prime Minister has announced no internal combustion cars will be sold new in Great Britain starting in 2035. How many English firms can make that deadline?
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Comments

  1. Crispian Besley says

    Actually Boris Johnson has recently changed his mind and is now saying 2030, so only nine years away !! It is a totally unrealistic target as the infrastructure of charging points simply doesn’t exist in this country and if they want to address it properly then they would have to spend £ billions which the country can ill afford in the current Covid related economic scenario.
    However this is the way the motor industry seems to be heading in the meantime so people like us will increasingly be considered pariahs who are taxed off the road. What will that do to the value of the less exotic classic cars that most of us own ? Will they become more collectible or worthless in the years to come ?
    The way to go is Hydrogen power which is much cleaner and less expensive than the cost of producing electricity and batteries. Also ICE engines can be converted to run on Hydrogen. The industry needs to be spending a lot more on R&D in this area..

  2. Bruce Caron says

    Where is the electricity to power all of these vehicles coming from? Here in California we are experiencing power shortages as a result of switching to wind and solar power.

    Funny thing, when there is no wind and the sun isn’t shining there is no power, wow, who knew.

    We also have a mandate to eliminate combustion engines. So the demand for electricity is going to keeping growing.

    It all feels real good to say it but living with the cold hard reality is something different. Politicians will say anything you want to hear to stay in power. Although we might still be in virus shutdown mode in 2035 so we won’t need cars.

  3. Bob Wachtel says

    Come on everybody get real. You know the icebergs are slowly melting and glaciers are shrinking. The sea water levels will continue to rise and flooding will continue to occur in the same usual locations where it’s happened previously only more frequently now. Places like New Orleans, states bordering the Gulf Coast and South Carolina. That’s just in the U.S.A. There seems to be more hurricanes and typhoons all around the world. We’re not imagining this, it’s happening now. Nobody is crushing collectible gasoline powered vehicles. They will be bought up by collectors. Gasoline will still be available at higher prices and there will still be mechanics that will be able to repair these cars. Plenty more mechanics will be needed to repair the all electric vehicles and more charging stations will be erected for these cars. Busses and trucks and semis will be electric powered too. There will be more choices of solar panels available at lower prices. There will be many more jobs available to install these solar panels and to repair and service all these vehicle. Pure water will become a precious commodity and we will have to learn better how to conserve it. We certainly shouldn’t waste our water thru fracking, which should be abolished. We should also make our forests safer from random forest fires to save tremendous amounts of water that can better be used for irrigation to farmer’s crops instead. Someday cruise ships will be electric, wind and solar powered all together and who knows what will happen with airplane travel? Perhaps passenger planes will be made considerably lighter and much smaller to be solar and electric powered too. I own a V-10 powered 1999 Dodge Viper GTS coupe and I hope to own it until I can’t drive it anymore. I don’t use it a great deal but it’s quite reliable and I have a mechanic who can repair it when it needs to be repaired. There will be gasoline available as there is now but not as much as now. It’s just part of moving on with the times and adjusting. Look at these new loop trains that are being tested now in Las Vegas and California. This is just the edge of the future which will provide so many jobs for the public.

  4. Even if you don’t believe that climate change is caused by people you cannot ignore the fact that climate change is happening as Bob says above. If we humans can stop or delay this then we should do so (whether we caused it or not).

    As far as needing more electricity – yes we do need more electricity and batteries will help store solar power and wind power for use when the sun is not shining and the wind is not blowing. We also will solve the electricity problem just like we have addressed and solved other technology problems facing us. We also will learn to make batteries that have more power and we will make them will less pollution than now. Hydrogen power may also be an important part of the solution.

    I believe that collector cars powered by gas will be around as long as anyone wants them because they are a small part of the gas usage. Gas prices may go up but we will pay the price to drive our special vehicles because most of us do not put many miles on these collector cars and the cost of gas is a tiny part of the cost of ownership.

    Government making laws forcing changes has been going on for a long time. I lived part of my childhood in Los Angeles in the 1960s when the smog from automobiles was terrible and on some days students were not allowed outside for recess because the smog was so bad (the air had an orange tint). Even in the classroom with the windows closed and the A/C on the smog still got in and burned my eyes. Imagine what it was doing to our lungs.

    Now decades after California led the world with automobile pollution laws the LA area has significantly cleaner air even with many millions more autos than in the 1960s. This would not have happened without a government making low pollution mandatory to sell autos in California (the auto companies certainly would not have done this on their own). Now we have high performance autos that produce far less pollution than the old muscle cars of the ’60s and they are much faster.

  5. Glenn Krasner says

    You can still have internal combustion engines until the end of time, and still Aston Martin and Lotus will probably go out of business, or perhaps, if we are lucky, be continued as subsidiaries of larger, more successful marques. I live in the Bronx, and work all over Manhattan and Brooklyn, and cannot remember the last time I saw a Lotus on the road. I do see an Aston Martin on the road or parked about once every two months. Not a recipe of longevity for either firm. Glenn in the Bronx, NY.

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