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MAYDAY!


REV ONLINE| 29


Rev can only wonder what road tax agreement is reached for a car that’s rarely even on the tarmac!


Of course, while fl ying cars probably won’t be the healthiest of options for an environment increasingly clogged with pollutants, there are moves in motoring to fi nd alternative energy sources. In basic terms, this means boffi ns in science labs are trying to perfect ways of running cars on sunfl ower oil, electricity, and Ribena. Okay, so we lied about the Ribena, but May feels there’s plenty to get excited about when it comes to alternative fuel... with a couple of exceptions.


“Wind power is the darling of the environmental masses but it’s as old as the hills and has never really been enhanced. Hydroelectric generation is another old one – that’s water to you and me. It’s what kicked off the industrial revolution, after all, but that was over 100 years ago. Surely we’ve moved on since then?


that’s water to you and me. It’s what kicked off the industrial revolution, after all, but that was over 100 years ago. Surely we’ve moved on since then?”


“Hydroelectric generation is another old one –


“The saviour, to me, is the idea of a properly powerful electric car. Imagine a motor that performed as well as a Porsche 911 but gave out nothing more than a faint hum. The electric car is the only way - with its reliability and ease of maintenance, it would be a marvel.”


Of course, by the time a Porsche engine is measured in volts, not litres, James May might be cruising around the great highway in the sky. But in the meantime, while many readers of Rev will be embarking on their first bits of four-wheeled fun, someone the age of our viscount of vehicles must have seen many motors cross his path over the years...


“Oh yes, I’ve owned an awful lot of cars, that’s for sure. I’m not quite sure how many but it’s more than 10 and less than 100... probably!


“At the moment I’m the careful custodian of six cars and 10 motorcycles. Then there’s another motor in a museum. I think as well that the longer you drive, the more obsessive you become about cars. People say that they’re there to be driven, but they’re works of art as well – the older ones, at least – and you have to treat art with respect and love.


“The garage at my London home is where I keep the bikes, then I rent another garage off a neighbour, and park the remaining cars out in the street. It all sounds a bit crazy – I should buy a bigger house really. Although I only really bought the house in the fi rst place because it had a sizeable garage!”


And so turn the cogs in James May’s mind... So what advice would he give to any new motorists out there?


“I said earlier I was the ‘custodian’ of my vehicles, because that’s what I am. As a motorist, you never really own a car; it’s just in your care for a while. That’s why we all owe it to ourselves and our metal friends to treat cars with the respect they deserve, because the chances are they’ll belong to someone else further down the road!”


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