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A new way to go off-road

Driving a new car can be nerve-wracking for the first few journeys. Especially if it’s an £80,000 Range Rover Sport and your chosen route involves steering it at night through the crowded, confined streets of London’s West End. Clearly, for this motorist, a moment of panic set in as she lost control of her 4x4 and sent it hurtling from the highway, across the pavement and towards someone's home.

She collided with a set of railing with sufficient force to crash through them and came to rest in the opening to the basement below. As you can see from the picture, the Rangie is wedged sideways. Police report that, amazingly, all four female occupants escaped serious injury.

The 4x4 was the relatively rare 5.0 V8 supercharged model that develops 510bhp and shifts from rest to 62mph in 5secs. As you may spot from the photos, it's a 14-reg, so it was less than a month old and had, apparently, covered fewer than 500 miles. As the accident occurred at 5am, anyone sleeping in the basement flat of the block, in London’s exclusive Fitzrovia, must have awoken with a huge shock. Police, however, said they would not be investigating, as it was a damage-only collision.

 

Range Rover Sport

 

Out pops a car

China, meanwhile, is home to what must be the world largest vending machine: this one dispenses cars (see our video, above). Put the equivalent of £1.80 into the slot of this building-sized machine in the city of Hangzhou, wait for a few moments as gears and motors whirr and grind, and out pops a small electric car, which is yours for an hour. The building is operated by Kandi Technologies. And the Smart-sized two-seaters, which run on electric power and pop out fully charged, are proving popular. So much so that the company has opened a second site and has 10 more planned this year across the country.

 

One owner and 132 miles in 27 years

Finally, here’s a real blast from the past. Fancy availing yourself of a Volvo 340 with just 132 miles from new? Those of you that know your Volvos will clock that this model hails from the mid-to-late 1980s. This one  first saw service in 1987.

But its elderly owner drove it for just a few weeks until he scraped its offside front wing on a bollard, during a visit to a garden centre. Unnerved by the mishap, he retired it to his garage at home. And there it stayed until a couple of weeks ago, when Anglia auctions, the company currently offering, collected it.

They report that the car is original and as delivered to its first owner, right down to the paper floor mats the dealer put in pre-delivery. The car starts and drives, apparently, although the brakes bind a little and it (obviously) will need a full service, fresh tyres and an MoT test. Otherwise it is exactly as new, right down to the showroom-fresh cabin smell. Interested? A trip to Anglia Car Auctions on April 5 beckons.

 

Volvo 340

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