Monkey

Quiz Monkey
What do you want to know?

You are here:

Travel
Cars and driving

See also International Vehicle Registration Codes.

On this page:

History
The Highway Code
Tyres
Abbreviations
Engineering
Makes
Models
Record Breakers
Other

If you like my website, and/or if you've found it useful, please consider making a small donation to my Just Giving page, which I've set up just for this purpose. To begin with I'm collecting for a charity whose work I have benefitted from myself (and continue to do so): the British Heart Foundation. It would be great to raise £100 in the first month.

If you have already donated ... Thank You!

Cars and Driving

See also Roads, International Plates.

Note that this page also covers motorcycles.

History

Cost of the standard Mini when launched (1959) Click to show or hide the answer
Number of Model 'T' Fords sold (nearest million) Click to show or hide the answer

London to Brighton Run first held – to celebrate the passing of the Light Locomotives Act by Parliament that year Click to show or hide the answer
The RAC was founded in Click to show or hide the answer
Registration numbers came into force on British cars Click to show or hide the answer
The London to Brighton Run is for Veteran cars – made before Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
The AA was founded in Click to show or hide the answer
Vintage cars are those made between (inclusive range) Click to show or hide the answer
30mph speed limit on urban roads came into force in Britain Click to show or hide the answer
Volkswagen Beetle launched Click to show or hide the answer
Morris Minor launched Click to show or hide the answer
Zebra crossings incorporated into law in the UK (after a 2–year experiment) Click to show or hide the answer
Austin Mini launched Click to show or hide the answer
MOT Test introduced (for vehicles over 10 years old) Click to show or hide the answer
British registration numbers first suffixed by a letter Click to show or hide the answer
Breathalyser introduced in the UK Click to show or hide the answer
New cars to have front seat belts fitted (UK) – applied to cars made from 1965 on Click to show or hide the answer
You don't need a road tax licence for cars built before Click to show or hide the answer
Wearing of seat belts made compulsory (in front seats) in the UK Click to show or hide the answer
Wearing of seat belts by adult rear seat passengers made compulsory in the UK Click to show or hide the answer
Current format of vehicle registration numbers introduced Click to show or hide the answer

Questions about veteran and vintage cars are fair enough; but beware the term "classic car" – there are lots of contradictory definitions. HM Revenue & Customs, for taxation purposes, defines a Classic Car as one that's over 15 years old and worth more than £15,000 (2008 – still the same in 2017).

The Highway Code

At this point I obviously should point out that the Highway Code applies to all road users, not just car drivers.

Stopping distances

Never a popular subject in quizzes – who carries this information around in their head? But if you want to be prepared, here they are.

Formula: the thinking distance in feet is the same as the speed in miles per hour. To work out the braking distance (in feet): divide the speed in miles per hour by 10, square it, and multiply by 5. For example: 60 divided by 10 is 6; 6 squared is 36; 36 times 5 is 180. A car length is 4m or 13 ft.

Speed Thinking distance Braking distance Stopping distance Car lengths
20 mph6m (20 ft)6m (20 ft)12m (40 ft) 3
30 mph9m (30ft)14m (45 ft)23m (75 ft) 6
40 mph12m (40 ft)24m (80 ft)36m (120 ft) 9
50mph15m (50 ft)38m (125 ft)53m (175 ft) 13
60 mph18m (60 ft)55m (180ft)73m (240 ft) 18
70 mph21m (70ft)75m (250 ft)96m (315ft) 24

Highway Code – Other

The 'first rule of the road' in Britain Click to show or hide the answer
Speed limit introduced 1903 Click to show or hide the answer
Minimum capacity of motorcycles allowed on British motorways Click to show or hide the answer
Age at which all British drivers must retake the driving test Click to show or hide the answer
The Highway Code forbids sounding your horn in a built–up area between Click to show or hide the answer
UK minimum legal tread depth Click to show or hide the answer
Yellow marks on the kerb prohibit Click to show or hide the answer
Background colour of UK road signs for tourist attractions Click to show or hide the answer
On the motorway, red cats eyes mark Click to show or hide the answer
Signs telling you what you can't do (e.g. No Entry): shape and colour Click to show or hide the answer
Signs telling you something you must do (e.g. keep left): shape and colour Click to show or hide the answer
Warning sign (e.g. beware animals on road) Click to show or hide the answer
The only UK road sign that's an inverted triangle (pointing down) means Click to show or hide the answer
The UK's only octagonal road sign means Click to show or hide the answer

Parking (and loading) restriction signs – which are actually the most numerous regulatory signs – are oblong.

Speed limits for goods vehicles, PSVs and vehicles towing trailers (including caravans):

Motorway and dual carriageway Click to show or hide the answer
Single carriageway Click to show or hide the answer

Traffic light sequence (UK):

Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer

Documents that a driver (in the UK) must be able to produce if requested by police:

Click to show or hide the answer
Click to show or hide the answer
Click to show or hide the answer
Click to show or hide the answer

The three types of traffic–light–controlled crossings described in the Highway Code are:

Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer Click to show or hide the answer

Since 2002, the theory part of the UK driving test has consisted of fifty multiple choice questions, and fourteen 60–second video clips designed to test Click to show or hide the answer

Tyres

Firestone tyres are made in Click to show or hide the answer
Bridgestone tyres are made in Click to show or hide the answer
Continental tyres are made in Click to show or hide the answer

Abbreviations

FSH (in a second–hand car advert) Click to show or hide the answer
ABS Click to show or hide the answer
OHC Click to show or hide the answer

Engineering

Forces valves to open and close Click to show or hide the answer
(Previously) used to mix petrol and air, to provide a combustible mixture; progressively replaced, mainly in the late 1980s and early 90s, by fuel injection systems Click to show or hide the answer
Removes pollutants from exhausts Click to show or hide the answer
Converts the up and down motion of the pistons to rotary, to drive the wheels Click to show or hide the answer
Allows the two wheels on one axle to turn at different speeds when cornering Click to show or hide the answer
Passes electricity from the ignition coil to the spark plugs in sequence Click to show or hide the answer
Selector fork is found in the Click to show or hide the answer
Connects the piston to the connecting rod Click to show or hide the answer
Using brake and accelerator simultaneously with the same foot Click to show or hide the answer
Alternative name for the four–stroke cycle (after its German inventor) Click to show or hide the answer
Component of the suspension system that "provides lateral location of the axle" – named after the French company that introduced it – also known as the track bar Click to show or hide the answer
Dampens the recoil of the road springs Click to show or hide the answer
Space at the bottom of the engine, used for collecting oil Click to show or hide the answer
"Spy in the cab" that measures the hours and speed of a lorry or bus driver Click to show or hide the answer
Connects the crankshaft to the camshaft Click to show or hide the answer
Connects the front wheels, ensuring they both turn at the same angle Click to show or hide the answer
Distance between front and rear axles Click to show or hide the answer
Invented by Newcastle United fan Gladstone Adams as a result of his experience on a journey to watch the FA Cup final in 1908 (Newcastle lost 1–3 to Wolves) Click to show or hide the answer

Makes

Founded in 1913 by Lionel Martin and Robert Bamford, original premises in Kensington; moved to Feltham, Middlesex in 1926; opened new factories at Bloxham, Oxfordshire in 1994, and Gaydon, Warwickshire in 2003; bought by Ford in 1994, then by a consortium of private investors in 2007, then by an Italian private equity fund in 2012 Click to show or hide the answer
Founded in 1909 by August Horsch, who'd already set up one motor company with his own name but had been forced out of it; uses the Latin translation of that name (meaning "hark" or "listen") – said to have been suggested by the young son of an associate; symbol is four linked circles; bought by Volkswagen in 1966 Click to show or hide the answer
Founded in 1919 in Cricklewood, Middlesex; bought by Rolls Royce in 1931; moved to Crewe, Cheshire, in 1938 (site acquired by the government to support wartime manufacturing – made more than 25,000 "Merlin" aircraft engines during the war); bought by Volkswagen in 1998 Click to show or hide the answer
Austin, Morris, Austin Healey, MG, Riley, Wolseley: main marques of Click to show or hide the answer
Bought Rolls Royce Motors in 1998 Click to show or hide the answer
Badge represents a spinning propeller
Founded in Alsace in 1909; enjoyed great success in Grand Prix racing between the wars; foundered following the death of its Italian–born founder in 1947, but revived in 1987 to produce high–performance sports cars; acquired by Volkswagen in 1998; produced the Veyron supercar, 2005–15; announced the Chiron in 2016 as the successor to the Veyron Click to show or hide the answer
Named after the French explorer who founded Detroit in 1701 (Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac); founded in 1902 after Henry Ford left the company that bore his name (going on to found the present Ford Motor Company in 1903); still headquartered in Detroit Click to show or hide the answer
FCA: the world's seventh–biggest car manufacturer – owns marques including Jeep, Alfa Romeo, Ferrari, Lancia and Maserati; formed in 2014 when Fiat acquired (American manufacturer) Click to show or hide the answer
Founded in 1966, takes its name from the historic region that constitutes much of present–day Romania; bought by Renault in 1999; Romania's top company by revenue, and largest exporter Click to show or hide the answer
Korean manufacturer bought by General Motors 2001; rebranded as Chevrolet 2005 Click to show or hide the answer
Produced the first successful four–wheeled petrol–driven motor car, and the first commercially available British motor car (1896) Click to show or hide the answer
US–based company that manufactured the DMC–12 sports car, 1981–2, in the village of Dunmurry (just outside Belfast) Click to show or hide the answer
Based in Maranello, near Modena Click to show or hide the answer
Likes to call itself "the Blue Oval" (after its emblem); owned Aston Martin 1992–2007, Jaguar 1989–2008 (see Tata) Click to show or hide the answer
Oldsmobile, Chevrolet, Buick, Pontiac: main US marques of Click to show or hide the answer
Motorcycle manufacturer founded in 1903 in Milwaukee, Michigan; models include Fat Boy, Softail, Sportster, Electra Glide Click to show or hide the answer
The Goldwing motor cycle is manufactured by Click to show or hide the answer
South Korea's biggest car manufacturer: name means "modernity" Click to show or hide the answer
Genesis – officially announced as a stand–alone marque in 2015 – is the luxury vehicles division of
Formed in Blackpool, in 1922, by William Lyons and William Walmsley as the Swallow Sidecar Co. (a 1935 model was called the SS Jaguar); moved to Coventry in 1928; adopted its current name in 1945 (because of the Nazi associations of the SS name); bought by Ford in 1989, Tata in 2008 Click to show or hide the answer
South Korea's second largest car manufacturer (after Hyundai), and the first to offer a seven–year warranty on all cars sold in Europe Click to show or hide the answer
Luxury car manufacturer, founded in 1906 in Staines, Surrey, by Wilbur Gunn, an American former opera singer of Scottish ancestry; named after a beauty spot (creek) near his home town of Springfield, Ohio; bought by Aston Martin in 1947 Click to show or hide the answer
Switched from making farm machinery to ultra–desirable cars, in 1963; badge depicts a raging bull, in recognition of the founder's interest in bullfighting; the majority of its models have names that are related to bullfighting Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Founded in 1917 by Henry Leland and his son Wilfred; named after the first Presidantial candidate that Leland Sr. had voted for; bought by Ford in 1922, and has been a luxury Ford brand ever since Click to show or hide the answer
Founded in 1952 by Colin Chapman – badge has "ACBC" (for Anthony Colin Bruce Chapman); based since 1966 in the village of Hethel, Norfolk; famous models include the Elan, Eclat, Elite, Esprit, and Elise Click to show or hide the answer
Founded in 1926 by six Italian brothers; emblem is a trident Click to show or hide the answer
Bongo (commercial vehicle): manufactured since 1966 by Click to show or hide the answer
Originally the name of an engine, developed for Daimler by the German entrepreneur Emil Jellinek, who named it after his daughter Click to show or hide the answer
Founded in 1924 to market cars customised to the designs of salesman Cecil Kimber Click to show or hide the answer
Logo is three diamonds Click to show or hide the answer
First British car to sell a million Click to show or hide the answer
Japanese company: opened a major new factory in Sunderland, Tyne & Wear, in 1986; by 2007 it was producing 400,000 vehicles per year, making it Europe's most productive car plant Click to show or hide the answer
Infiniti is the luxury vehicle division of
US marque: founded in 1897, bought by General Motors in 1908, discontinued in 2004; produced the 88, 1949–99 – its best seller from 1950 to 1974 – which gave its name to the 1951 song Rocket 88, often described as the first rock 'n' roll record Click to show or hide the answer
Badge is a lion rampant; introduced the acclaimed RCZ coupé in 2010 Click to show or hide the answer
Founded in 1935 by T. L. Williams at Tamworth, Staffordshire; based there until shortly before its demise in 2002; famous for the Robin 3–wheeler and the Scimitar sports model Click to show or hide the answer
Formed as a result of a meeting in the Midland Hotel, Manchester, 1904; went bankrupt in 1971 Click to show or hide the answer
Group that included the marques Hillman, Singer, Sunbeam and Humber Click to show or hide the answer
Founded in 1878 to make bicycles; made its first car in 1904; in 1967 it became part of Leyland Motor Corporation, which took its name in 1986 and was subsequently acquired by British Aerospace in 1988, sold to BMW in 1994, and split up in 2000 (BMW retained the Mini marque, sold Land Rover to Ford, and sold the remainder for £10 to a consortium headed by this company's former chief executive); ceased production in 2005 Click to show or hide the answer
Founded in 1950 in Martorell, Catalonia, by a state–owned company; controlled by Fiat from 1967; became Volkswagen's first non–German wholly–owned subsidiary in 1990;  name is an acronym whose full expression translates into English as "Spanish Touring Car Company" Click to show or hide the answer
Replaced the Ford Cortina in 1982; replaced by the Mondeo in 1994 Click to show or hide the answer
Founded in 1895 in the Czech Republic, bought by Volkswagen in 2000 Click to show or hide the answer
Established in 1994 as a joint venture between Swatch and Daimler–Benz Click to show or hide the answer
1924: Malcolm Campbell broke the world land speed record, driving a Click to show or hide the answer
Bought Jaguar Cars from Ford in 2008 Click to show or hide the answer
US company, founded in 2003 and named after a Croatian–born physicist; specialises in making high–performance electric cars for the luxury market; unsuccessfully sued the BBC's Top Gear in 2011 following a review of the Roadster, which implied that it couldn't hold charge Click to show or hide the answer
Lexus is the luxury vehicle division of Click to show or hide the answer
Sports car maker, established in Blackpool 1946 (and owned until 1965) by Trevor Wilkinson Click to show or hide the answer
Founded in 1857 by Alexander Wilson, to make pumps and marine engines; bought in 1863 (and given its current name) by Andrew Betts Brown to make travelling cranes; began making cars in 1903; bought by General Motors in 1925; Bedford Vehicles was established in 1930 as a subsidiary to manufacture commercial vehicles; sold in 2017 to Groupe PSA (manufacturers of Peugeot, Citröen and DS) Click to show or hide the answer
'I roll' in Latin Click to show or hide the answer
Owns Audi, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini, Porsche, SEAT, Skoda Click to show or hide the answer

Models

The first car ever built in India: ceased production in 2014 after 56 years (British Leyland made a model with the same name, from 1982 to 1984) Click to show or hide the answer
Bentley's version (equivalent) of the Rolls–Royce Silver Seraph – produced 1998–2009 Click to show or hide the answer
The first four–wheel drive saloon Click to show or hide the answer
The first British hatchback Click to show or hide the answer
Small, low–cost sports car, produced by BMC (later British Leyland) from 1958 to 1971: marketed as one that "a chap could keep in his bike shed", and the successor to sporting versions of the pre–war Austin Seven; affectionately known as the 'frog–eye' because of its headlights, prominently mounted on top of the bonnet; see also MG Midget Click to show or hide the answer
Subject of the first Haynes Owner's Workshop Manual (titled as such), published in 1965 Click for more information
The first mass–produced British car Click to show or hide the answer
Vauxhall model: based on the Opel Ascona, replaced the Victor in 1975, replaced in 1995 by the Vectra Click to show or hide the answer
Land Rover model: production ceased in 2016, ending a run that went back to the company's original 1948 model Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
The UK's best–selling car, every year from 2009 to 2016 (and counting) Click to show or hide the answer
Chevrolet car (built since 1958, with some breaks): named after an antelope Click to show or hide the answer
Model produced by Aston Martin from 1974 to 1990: named after the luxury marque that Aston Martin had bought in 1947 Click to show or hide the answer
MG–badged, slightly more expensive version of the Austin–Healey Sprite; produced 1961–80 Click to show or hide the answer
Replaced the Model 'T' Ford, 1928 Click to show or hide the answer
First British car to sell a million Click to show or hide the answer
Launched in 2006, and named after an ethnic group from Iran (known in Japan and Australia as the Dualis) Click to show or hide the answer
Controversial Ford 'subcompact' (supermini), 1971–80 (North America only): with a reputation for fuel–tank fires associated with rear–end collisions; a leaked memo suggested that it was preferable to pay damages rather than to recall the car Click to show or hide the answer
James Dean, when he died, was driving a Click to show or hide the answer
Rolls–Royce's first car (Manchester, 1906 – Derby from 1908) Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Ford mid–sized model: the USA's best–selling car every year from 1992 to 1996 Click to show or hide the answer
Name shared by cars made by Triumph (1970–6) and Seat (from 1991) – after a Spanish city, famous for sword–making; there is also a city in Ohio with the same name Click to show or hide the answer
Volkswagen city car (World Car of the Year 2012): shares its name with a Pixar film released in 2009 Click to show or hide the answer
Aston Martin model, launched in 1977 following the rescue of the company, and produced until 1989: hailed as "Britain's first supercar" for its 170 mph top speed Click to show or hide the answer
Publicised on introduction (1938) by the slogan 'strength through joy' Click to show or hide the answer

Record Breakers

Broke the world land speed record nine times between 1924 and 1935 (during which period it increased from 145 mph to 301 mph); also held the water speed record from 1937 to 1950, breaking it four times Click to show or hide the answer
Carmarthenshire beach on which Malcolm Campbell set world land speed records in 1924, 1925 and 1927 (also Parry Thomas in 1926) Click to show or hide the answer
Florida beach where the world land speed record was broken seven times between 1928 and 1935 – twice by Henry Segrave (UK), four times by Malcolm Campbell, and once (1928) by Ray Keech (USA) Click to show or hide the answer
Utah salt flats where the world land speed record was broken seven times between 1935 and 1947 – once by Malcolm Campbell, three times by George Eyston, and three times by John Cobb Click to show or hide the answer
Son of Malcolm Campbell: held the world water speed record from 1955 to 1967, breaking it seven times; also held the land speed record for a wheel–driven car from 1964 to 1965, after Craig Breedlove (USA) broke the overall record using jet power Click to show or hide the answer
Name used by Malcolm Campbell and his son Donald for their cars and boats Click to show or hide the answer
Sir Malcolm Campbell, and his son Donald, set world water speed records in 1939 and 1959 respectively, on (Cumbrian lake); Donald Campbell died there during an unsuccessful attempt in 1967 Click to show or hide the answer
Scottish businessman who set a new world land speed record of 633.468 mph (1,019 km/h) in 1983; also directed the ThrustSSC project (see below) Click to show or hide the answer
Name of the car in which Richard Noble broke the world land speed record Click to show or hide the answer
RAF fighter pilot: became the first person to break the sound barrier on land, when he set a new world land speed record of 714.144 mph (1,149.303 km/h) in 1997 Click to show or hide the answer
Name of the car in which RAF fighter pilot Andy Green became the first driver to break the sound barrier (in 1997) Click to show or hide the answer
Desert in Nevada where both Richard Noble and Andy Green set world land speed records Click to show or hide the answer

Other

BMW stands for (in English) Click to show or hide the answer
Britain's National Motor Museum Click to show or hide the answer
Before cars, Rover made Click to show or hide the answer
Skodas are primarily manufactured in Click to show or hide the answer
UK government department responsible for driving tests Click to show or hide the answer
You would find "Battenburg markings" on (an) Click to show or hide the answer
Irish–born British tractor pioneer: made a deal with Henry Ford in 1938, to produce tractors incorporating his innovations in the USA; merged with Massey Harris of Canada in 1953 (following the expiry of most of his important patents), forming the company that combined his name with that of Massey Click to show or hide the answer
Whitby Morrison, f.k.a. Whitby Specialist Vehicles – based in Crewe, Cheshire – is the world's leading manufacturer of Click to show or hide the answer
Builder of the first British motor car, 1894–5 (didn't market or sell any until Daimler had already done so); inventor of the disc brake Click to show or hide the answer
The Gatso is a brand of Click for more information Click to show or hide the answer
Title, or name, of the Rolls–Royce emblem (statuette) Click to show or hide the answer
Manganese Bronze Holdings plc – once dealing in British motorcycle marques – now only makes Click to show or hide the answer
Secretary who modelled for the Spirit of Ecstasy Click to show or hide the answer
Nickname of the Model 'T' Ford Click to show or hide the answer
FIAT: the T stands for Click to show or hide the answer
Up to 1963, Lamborghini made Click to show or hide the answer
Depicted on the Rover badge (also a stylised one on the Skoda badge) Click to show or hide the answer

© Haydn Thompson 2017