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There has been jubilation in the car manufacturing industry this week as the fuel efficiency of new cars was revealed to have improved by a whopping 7.64 per cent. Me, sarcastic? No. Don’t get me wrong, this is fantastic news for the environment and in the long term, if car manufacturers continue along the same vein it will transform the way the industry is perceived. However in the short term, this development won’t make a blind bit of difference to the average motorist driving a four-year-old VW Golf thanks to the crippling fuel duty increase coming into force in January which means they can’t afford to buy a new car unless they sell a kidney.

The sad fact is that very few motorists are in a position to buy a new car at the moment. Now if car manufacturers could develop a strap-on propeller so drivers could glide to the office on thin air rather than sacrificing their children’s college fund to pay for a tank of petrol, that would be something special.

Although it’s fun to let the imagination run wild with notions of fantastical inventions to take the stress out of driving, the truth of the matter is that motorists desperately need something to take the strain out of the driving experience. Expensive fuel, congested roads and generally higher living costs have turned driving into a very unpleasant experience. Some local authorities have been taking steps to improve life for beleaguered drivers with 2+ car-sharing lanes and car-sharing schemes. Indeed, many employers have gone even further, offering their employees discounted cycles in bike-to-work schemes.

It’s always necessary to plan for future car drivers and buyers; however, in our current economic situation it’s the four-year-old VW Golf driver who needs some TLC. If car manufacturers could come up with some ways of improving life for them, that really would be cause for jubilation.

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