Remembering 2004: COIF Excursion limo announced for UK Market
Feb07

Remembering 2004: COIF Excursion limo announced for UK Market

2013, is our tenth year of producing news, reviews and features for the chauffeur and limousine industries in the UK. On these pages, we will be highlighting stories and issues we have published over the past decade. 2004 Archive: Executive Coach Europe has announced it is to make the worlds only right-hand drive Ford Excursions for the UK’s limousine market. Since the opening of ECB’s 15 acre factory in Springfield Missouri, the company has noticed a large demand for right-hand drive luxury limousines from the UK, so it’s now producing a mirror version of the left-hand drive 140″ Excursion. The company’s UK distributor in Southampton is taking delivery of the Excursions in early February 2004, which are expected to retail at around £75,000. The limousines are to house a newly developed V8 Powerstroke diesel engine. The fuel consumption will be higher than the previous diesel version and it will only require servicing every 100,000 miles. Managing Director of Executive Coach Europe in Southampton, Peter Bunting said, “We are delighted to be able to stock these unique vehicles for the UK limo industry.’ “Coachbuilders in the states are starting to realise the growing trend in the UK for limousines and are beginning to produce vehicles which would suit buyers over here. The Ford Excursion is an amazing vehicle, and it would make a great difference being able to drive one with a UK spec at last, and comfortably carry up to 14 passengers’. The extensive list detailed on this page show how serious the coachbuilders are about bringing its models to this country, and making a bigger impact to the limousine industry. These are a ‘mirror image’ conversion, with all parts carrying EEC type approval or equivalency. Lighting systems are all E-marked and rear turn signals are converted with factory amber combination units that retain back up lamp and brake functions as normal. Side marker lamps are Ford spec and installed with factory tooling. Headlamps are E marked and have the correct dip/high beam pattern for use on UK roads. Windscreen wipers are converted with a new scuttle panel to a right hand sweep to give a professional factory look to the vehicle. The conversion requires a new chassis  insert to carry the steering components on the right of the vehicle so as to facilitate the correct alignment of the steering column in its new position. New pitman and idler arms are manufactured along with a new steering rack to ensure correct geometry and proper handling. Air conditioning systems and heater units are redesigned to allow their relocation in the engine bay and behind the dashboard to clear the relocated...

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Rover 75 Chauffeur Service at Farnborough Airshow

The Farnborough Airshow was well served with impressive displays from MG Rover as it supplied a top class chauffeur service for VIP’s. Visitors to the show were personally chauffeured by a fleet of Royal Blue Rover 75 Saloon and limousine cars, to a destination within the event, of their choice. The new 2004 Rover 75 Limousine, derived from the successful Rover 75 Saloon with a 200mm longer wheelbase is now Longbridge-built and distinguished by the new large-grille treatment, first seen on the new Rover V8. The 75 Limousine is wholly reminiscent of previous high-powered and ministerial Rover cars and is available in high-specification Connoisseur SE trim, combining supreme rear compartment legroom and interior proportions with extra interior lighting and provision for bespoke Monogram features. The 75 Limousine is a refined vehicle that delivers on comfort and refinement for a modest UK price comfortably under £30,000. Produced at Longbridge, where it was previously coach-built by S MacNeillies & Son, the Rover 75 Limousine is assembled on the same advanced production facility that produce the 75 variants, thereby ensuring a consistent high quality build standard and continuity of process. The 75 Limousine can be specified with a quad-cam, 2.5-litre light-aluminium V6 petrol engine or the common-rail turbo-diesel with either manual or automatic...

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Chauffeur firm gets marketing advice from the workers themselves

Company bosses who invite their employees to express their views and opinions about the organisation they work for are few are far between – but an established chauffeur company in Middlesex is doing just that! Arscott Chauffeur Services based in Ashford has hired a top management consultant who has spent three months monitoring the business and finding ways of not just improving the efficiency of the service and reducing overheads, but also improving the working relationships amongst the work-force and with its clients. The consultant was hired by Bill Arscott after 13 successful years in business, and now with the aim of making his company even more successful, Bill has drafted in the consultant to work with the company and report on ways it can be improved. Every chauffeur and employee that works for ACS was invited to take part in an hour-long meeting with Joe to discuss their ideas on ways of improving the service and any  operational issues they may have. They were also invited to complete an anonymous survey covering all aspects of the business. Bill believes that the welfare of his chauffeurs and staff is an extremely important part of the business. All chauffeurs that work for ACS are fully licensed and trained through IAM defensive driving courses. They also complete specialist first aid training and attend annual medicals. The company now employs almost fifty permanent drivers and an office support team of 15 to give clients a 24-hour service. Bill Arscott said, “The key to running a successful chauffeur business is to maintain a constant level of drivers that relates to the volume of work being handled ensuring good driver retention and sufficient resources when the bookings come flooding in!’ “All our vehicles are fitted with ‘black box’ style devices to provide useful data for managing the fleet and allowing drivers to get the appropriate rest periods. This ensures both driver and passenger safety”. He continued, “When I see the final report on the company, it will allow us to work on areas which we consider important in maintaining a high quality service. I think every company could benefit from this kind of exercise; the results can be very enlightening and...

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All is not lost – advises replacement chauffeur vehicle hire firm

Many chauffeurs would think that if they have been involved in an accident and their vehicle was unfit to drive – they would have to let down future bookings until the vehicle is fixed. Just hiring a suitable car to carry out your normal duties from a normal car hire company is always out of the question as insurance and licensing issues will get in the way and will put you at risk if the worst happens. However, there is another option which allows you to carry on taking those important bookings and will see you back on the road operating as normal in a high-class vehicle. A London based vehicle replacement firm is stressing to chauffeurs not to worry if their car is off the road. Most operators know it is illegal to use a car that is not licensed for private hire. Sometimes your insurance company may not be aware of this and may offer you a car which would be illegal to use – remember it is your license at risk – not theirs! Raymond Allen from Replacement Vehicle Hire said, “There are many companies which offer replacement vehicles for hire when yours has been involved in an accident, but chauffeurs must always be careful which company they choose.’ He added, “If a driver is operating in London, the vehicle they hire must be PCO licensed otherwise they will probably be driving illegally, and they would not be insured.’ Replacement Vehicle Hire provides a number of cars to cater for most chauffeuring needs which are all PCO licensed. S-Class Mercedes-Benz and Chrysler Voyagers are also available to ensure you carry on to provide a luxury car service to your clients. Raymond continued, “As soon as you are involved in an accident, tell the third party insurance company to contact us so that we can help you organise a replacement. You should insist on it – it’s your right to go back to work. Remember, they don’t keep licensed cars ready for you – we...

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First Limousine and Chauffeur Show announced

Plans to host the UK’s first show dedicated to displaying the world’s must luxurious stretched limousines and prestigious cars have been revealed. The Limousine and Chauffeur Show will open to the public and chauffeuring industry in September 2005. It is planned to bring together the world’s biggest American limousine manufacturers to display the newest innovations and vehicles, including some of the world’s most desirable executive cars. The Chauffeur Magazine has obtained advance show information, ensuring our readers a fantastic opportunity to book discounted tickets for what is sure be a well visited and exciting venue. Tickets are on sale NOW for this special two day event which will take place on 17th and 18th September 2005 catering for every facet of the limousine and chauffeur industry. The Chauffeur Magazine has obtained a 25% discount for all tickets purchased through us, this is a limited ‘time’ offer, so make sure you don’t miss out and book today! USA limousine giants LCW, Debryan Coach, Executive Coach and Springfield have already confirmed they will be displaying various different models at the show. These vehicles are sure to be built with the ‘wow’ factor incorporating the latest ideas and technology.  Within 30 minutes drive from London, The Limousine and Chauffeur Show 2005 will give you the chance to see these unique vehicles in one location. Visitors will get a unique opportunity to experience vehicles rarely seen in the UK. Some of the finest Executive and luxury car manufacturers from around the world will also be attending. Displaying their finest vehicles which are sure to excite and impress the executive and chauffeuring industry. Trade stands featuring many aspects of the industry will also be in attendance offering a large choice and variety of goods and services. Businesses which offer finance, insurance, satellite navigation equipment, valet products, cleaning materials and limousine parts suppliers are among those expected. Sandown Racecourse in Surrey with easy access from London and the surrounding M25, M3 and M4 motorways will be the host for the first Limousine and Chauffeur Show which is also the first of its kind in Europe. If you are thinking of starting up in the limo hire business or looking for new vehicles and ideas for your executive hire company, this is the ideal show for you. It is also a unique opportunity to network with thousands of chauffeurs and limo operators from across the...

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Is your limousine illegal? Guidelines from Police Force

This will make interesting reading if you are a limousine operator. One of our readers handed this document to The Chauffeur Magazine which has been written by a traffic officer from Derbyshire Traffic Police. It has apparently been distributed to other police forces in the UK. We have not edited this document, so it delivers you the true facts… An area of road transport law which causes confusion and, it seems, has slipped through the net, is the Limousine.  The presence of limousines on our roads is becoming more common in an increasingly affluent society. It is the current fashion to import stretched limousines from North America for use on British roads. On the face of it these unusual vehicles are simply transporting people about in some, ahem, ‘style’.  However there is no distinction to be drawn between a large limousine carrying passengers and either a private hire vehicle or a minibus. All three are carrying passengers for money.  As such they must comply with minimum standards, and be operated in a responsible way. This guide will concentrate on the following areas: Classification , Licensing, Driver Licensing, Construction and Use.  I hope that the information that follows is clear and concise and that it gives you the confidence to deal with one of these vehicles. However stopping one on the way to the nightclub may prove less troublesome that on the way back! Remember the passengers in the back are probably innocent paying  customers and it would be good PR not to delay them too long, and in some situations you may need them as witnesses. Classification & Licensing This comes down to seats. How many passenger seats does the vehicle have? The guidance given by the Vehicle Inspectorate is to count the number of people being carried.  Obviously this doesn’t help us when the vehicle is empty but for the driver.  In this case the appropriate questions should be asked of him or her. As an absolute fall-back, the regulations about PSV fitness allow 400mm along the front edge of a seat for any passenger.  This is the ‘comfortable’ minimum amount of seat per passenger.  Be warned that these imported Limos have bench seats and it is not immediately obvious how many people they can carry.  They don’t have individual depressions in the seat structure for each backside as European vehicles do. They are commonly constructed to carry ten passengers in the USA. EIGHT PASSENGER SEATS OR LESS: A vehicle used for the commercial carriage of passengers and their effects which seat eight people or less and is not a Hackney Carriage can only be a Private Hire...

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