Letters of the week, November 9, 2014

The issues that got you talking this week

Sunday Times Driving letters November 9, 2014

Amazon cruise

I’m a fan of Jeremy Clarkson but I felt I must write regarding his review of the Toyota Land Cruiser (“It will carry your machinegun but you won’t get to the war on time”, last week). He compares the vehicle tested with a £100,000 Range Rover, but a Land Rover Discovery or Freelander would be nearer the mark. I would really like to see him test the “proper” Land Cruiser, the Amazon, which is used round the world by peacekeepers and the Red Cross. In my view it’s the best 4×4 you can buy.

Andrew Pike, Trowbridge, Wiltshire


Start-up business

Keyless ignition reflects a mindless obsession with technology (“Is this secure enough then, Mr Insurer?”, last week). Surely vehicle designers have more useful tasks to attend to, or do they think the new generation of luxury-car owners would struggle to operate a key that needs both inserting and turning without the help of a computer?

David Slinger, Highnam, Gloucestershire


Missed penalty

Graham Martin-Royle suggested that police seem to have no wish to enforce the law on parking violations (“Beyond the law”, Points, last week). Police no longer have jurisdiction on parking regulations, litter, dogs and noise: these are the responsibility of councils. Police retain jurisdiction only if the offence carries a penalty of driving licence points such as parking in the controlled zone of a pedestrian crossing.

Joseph Molloy, Rugeley, Staffordshire


Shining example

Like your reader Ken Adkin, I too am dazzled by people’s brake lights, though unnecessarily blinking indicators are worse (“Blindingly obvious”, Points, last week). The problem is stop-start systems and direct-shift gearboxes, which require the driver to sit with a foot on the brake.

I’m afraid I have both. I could, I suppose, flick the lever into neutral and apply the handbrake. The problem would then be when the lights changed. I don’t know which is more annoying: someone who sits with foot on brake and then moves off smartly, or the “thoughtful and considerate” person who takes an age to pull away. Anyway, sorry.

Mark Lanyon, Chedworth, Gloucestershire


The bright stuff

I was heartened to read this letter as I was beginning to wonder if it was just me getting fed up with being stuck in traffic where the driver of nearly every vehicle in front is sitting on the brake pedal. I suspect many of these people are the same ones who drive with their front fog lights on, regardless of visibility, possibly because they think it makes them look cool — like rally drivers. Wrong.

Peter Gallon, Paston Green, Norfolk


Call of duty

With the demise of the tax disc and falling fuel prices, surely this is the time to do away with vehicle tax and replace it with a surcharge on fuel. It would be a simple form of road pricing, ensuring that those who drive the most miles pay the most. A fuel surcharge would also be an eco-tax, discouraging unnecessary journeys and encouraging fuel-efficient driving.

Paul Wood, Hastings, East Sussex


Out of line

The Surrey section of the M25 that was blighted for two years by widening works has been left with a real problem. It has become nigh-on impossible to see the lane lines for about three miles either side of Clacket Lane services, especially when the road is wet. The remnants of temporary lane markings, along with the repairs, mean one cannot differentiate between the actual lane lines and the old removed markings. It’s a disgrace and it’s dangerous.

Mike Hughes, Hurstpierpoint, West Sussex


Not the ticket

Which planet is Ian Moorcroft on, asking a motorist to pay a penalty charge notice despite it containing an error with the numberplate details (“Pay up”, Points, last week)? He should visit my town, where traffic enforcement officers hide in multistorey car parks so they can watch drivers park and then swoop down to issue a ticket, even if they’re two minutes overdue. Mr Moorcroft could pay the penalty charge himself if he feels so strongly about it.

Mauro Benedetti, Kilmarnock, Ayrshire


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