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The 5 Best Vans from Film and TV

Vans get no glory but when you think about it, they are sometimes way more deserving of it than cars!

Some of the most iconic vans have featured in films and on TV, whether appearing on the streets of New York fleeing a heist or saving lives as an integral part of a heroic team. AXA Ireland has delved into the world of vans to provide you with our five best vans from film and TV.

The A-Team – GMC Vandura

Source: Paul Stringer/ shutterstock.com

Source: Paul Stringer/ shutterstock.com

“I love it when a plan comes together!”The A-Team van – the authentic one used in the 1983-87 television show – was a 1983 GMC Vandura cargo van. This iconic van really is one of the best ever and fans even rebuild replicas of it, which you can see on this site. 

 

Scooby Doo – The Mystery Machine

Source: Patrick Herd/shutterstock.com

Source: Patrick Herd/shutterstock.com

“If it weren’t for you meddling kids”he van of choice for arguably the world’s most famous detectives, a brightly coloured van by Chevy or Volkswagen called “The Mystery Machine” featured in the Scooby Doo cartoons and film. The exact van varies; the cartoons featured a rear engine van suggesting it was a VW or Corvair van. Other variants were based on the Chevy G10, whilst in the movie The Mystery Machine is a Ford Econoline.

 

Ghostbusters – Ecto-1

Source: Darren Brode/Shutterstock.com

Source: Darren Brode/Shutterstock.com

 

“I ain’t afraid of no ghost”  – The 1959 Cadillac professional chassis van aka The Ecto-1, built by the Miller-Meteor company, was the vehicle of choice for the Ghostbusters. It’s customized for tackling ghouls of all sizes and is very iconic.

 

 

 

 

Only Fools and Horses – Reliant Regal (Trotters Independent Trading)

Source: Dario Vuksanovic/ shutterstock.com

Source: Dario Vuksanovic/ shutterstock.com

 

“Rodney, you plonker!” – The van of choice for Peckham’s most famous dodgy trader, Del Boy used a Reliant  Robin to flog fake Rolex’s and knock-off jewellery. This little 3 wheeler is an English icon!

 

 

 

 

Little Miss Sunshine – VW Camper

Little Miss Sunshine’s road trip is action-packed and long, hence making our list of the best vans. The van, you ask? Well it’s a 1950–1967 Volkswagen T2 Microbus (Camper or Bus) painted in yellow. There were five of these used in the film and only three actually had engines – the other 2 were on the back of trucks for filming.

Source: Keith Bell/ Shutterstock.com

Source: Keith Bell/ Shutterstock.com

 

 

 

At AXA we may not have insured any of these iconic, unique vans but we can give you a 30% discount off your van insurance if you or your spouse’s car is insured with AXA – or a 20% discount if you or your spouse’s car is insured with another Irish motor insurance company. Minimum premium €316 applies.

Call AXA today on 1890 24 7 365 or drop into one of our 42 branches across Ireland or click here for a quote

If we missed your favourite van out, don’t forget to let us know!

AXA Van Insurance - 20% discount!

 

 

 

 

Best-selling van makes and models in 2015

BazFigures released by the Society of the Irish Motor Industry (SIMI) show that Light Commercial Vehicles (LCV) registrations were up 54 % (2,846) on March 2014 (1,852) and are up 59% in the first quarter compared to 2014.


SIMI Director General, Alan Nolan said: The LCV statistics are extremely positive reflecting the significant improvement in the business environment, particularly in the home market, which had been so impacted over recent years.

Dublin, Cork, Galway, Kildare and Limerick have the highest number of light commercial vehicle registrations to date in 2015.

The top 10 selling van makes in 2015 are:

  • Ford
  • Volkswagen
  • Renault
  • Toyota
  • Citroen
  • Land Rover
  • Peugeot
  • Nissan
  • Opel
  • Mercedes-Benz

The top 10 selling van models in 2015 are;

  • Ford Transit
  • Volkswagen Caddy
  • Ford Transit Connect
  • Toyota Landcruiser
  • Land Rover Discovery
  • Citroen Berlingo
  • Volkswagen Van Series
  • Renault Master
  • Renault Traffic
  • Peugeot Partner

The trusty van is the workhorse of many businesses and sole traders the length and breadth of Ireland.

Finding the right van insurance is an important decision for any van owner as having good cover in place will help you get back on the road quickly if anything happens.

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At AXA we know that time is money for van drivers, so our van insurance experts take just minutes to put together a seriously competitive quote

AXA love vans and we want to give them the credit that they deserve!

AXA gives you a 30% discount off your van insurance if you or your spouse’s car is insured with AXA or a 20% discount if you or your spouse’s car is insured with another Irish Motor Insurance company. Minimum premium Minimum premium €316 applies.

We believe that our van deserve more.  AXA Plus is our customer loyalty programme which allows you to save money with leading retailers on van accessories, fuel, puncture repair, parking and much, much more!

Why not join thousands of van drivers across Ireland and give your van the protection it deserves with AXA van Insurance.

Drop into one of our 42 branches across Ireland or call us on 1890 24 7 365.

New NCT Rules now in place !

Since December 8th, the penalty points system has changed. There are on the spot fines and penalty points for driving without a valid NCT disc displayed.

Previously, NCT offences were dealt with through the district courts, but the new legislation allows the Garda to impose fixed charge notices on the spot.

NCT Image

 

You will be able to have your vehicle tested 90 days before your test is due without any affect on your expiry date. You can also have a voluntary early test and, depending on the age of the vehicle, get a certificate for one or two years from the date of the successful test. The testing procedure is computer controlled and automated, making it highly accurate.

What is the NCT?

The National Car Testing Service (NCTS) is a government service, independent of the garage or motor traders, who don’t benefit whether your car passes or fails. The test is aimed at improving road safety standards. There are 47 operating centres nationwide. The test costs €55 and takes between 40 minutes to an hour to complete, both manually and automatically.

 What Does the Test Cover?

The test covers:

  • Brakes
  • Exhaust emissions
  • Wheels and tyres
  • Lights
  • Steering and suspension
  • Chassis and underbody
  • Electrical systems
  • Glass and mirrors
  • Transmission
  • Interior
  • Fuel system

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Minor things such as broken wing mirrors and misaligned headlights will fail you just as easily as major things. The NCT recommends that you make sure that you pay attention to common failure points beforehand. Check your headlights for alignment and condition, your front, rear and hand brakes and your exhaust emissions for effectiveness. You should also prepare for the test by making sure that your vehicle is clear of personal belongings, reasonably clean and the seat belts and clips are fully visible.

 

AXA Plus Card for Blog

As an AXA customer you can get great savings on all your motoring essentials and also receive free puncture repair and wheel balancing from our AXA Plus partners

 

We understand that the running costs associated with driving can be high, – you will need to pay for servicing, NCTs, road tax and, of course, fuel. All of these costs can add up quickly, which is why we are striving to make car insurance more affordable. Don’t forget to check out our great offers on car insurance or to get an AXA car insurance quote click here. #ad

 

5 Iconic Movie Cars from Yesteryear

5 Iconic Movie Cars from Yesteryear, which do you remember?

Ferris Bueller’s Day Off: 1961 Ferrari GT250

1961 Ferrari GT250

Image: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (1986)
Only 55 of these cars were ever made, so the Ferrari is a real icon. However, the cars in this classic 80’s movie were replicas, so there’s no need to panic about that car crash scene.

Back to the Future:  1981 DeLorean DMC-12

1981 dElOREAN

Image: Back to the Future
Built in Ireland and shipped to America, the DeLorean looks futuristic, even now. With its gull-wing doors, it’s the perfect car for a time machine.

 

Rebel without a Cause:  1949 Mercury Coupe

1949 Mercury Coupe

Image: Rebel without a Cause
The classic that made James Dean a star, Rebel without a Cause features a 1949 Mercury Coupe, and was released a month after James Dean died in a car crash.

 

The Love Bug: 1963 Model 117 Volkswagen Type 1

Herbie

Image: Herbie Goes to Monte Carlo (1977)
The famous Volkswagen Beetle has starred in seven different movies and TV series, the most recent being in 2005. Several cars were used in the filming, but the racing car had a Porsche 356 Super 90 engine.

 

 

 

Bullitt: 1968 Mustang GT390

Mustang

Image: Bullit
Steve McQueen’s Bullitt is one of the coolest films, not only because of McQueen himself, but because of his car. Two Mustangs were used for filming the iconic chase scene, and while one was scrapped after the film was finished, rumour has it that the other was stored in a barn in the Ohio River Valley.

 

At AXA we love vans too!!

At AXA we love vans too!!

Meet Barry aka Baz, plumber and owner of Barry’s Bathrooms. He has just insured his van with AXA.

Barry loves his van; it’s his car, office, workshop, storage unit even a temporary home at times all rolled into one.

He got a 20% discount on his van insurance all because his wife had her car insured with another insurance company.  Barry has invested his saving in a few little ‘blingtastic’ extras for the van.

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At AXA we love vans and we want to give them the credit that they deserve.

AXA gives you a 30% discount off your van insurance if you or your spouse’s car is insured with AXA or a 20% discount if you or your spouse’s car is insured with another Irish Motor Insurance company. Minimum premium Minimum premium €316 applies.

 

The standard van insurance package will get you going with a host of benefits including

  • Rewards for safe drivers with up to 50% no claims discount for drivers with 4 years claims free consecutive driving in their own name
  • Unlimited cover for injury to other people
  • Third party trailer cover – should your trailer be attached and cause loss or injury to other people
  • 24 hour claims service
  • AXA Approved Repairer network
  • Flexible payment options

When insuring his van Barry also learned that AXA offered Tradesman insurance, another box ticked off his to list while sitting in the van between jobs.  The AXA Tradesman policy offered him the all in one package protecting him, his employees (the lads – Jack & John) and members of the public, as well as keeping his equipment and other business property safe.

Finding the right van insurance is an important decision for any van owner, so why wait call AXA today on 1890 24 7 365 or drop into one of our 42 branches across Ireland.

AXA & ISM save young drivers up to €400 off insurance

EUROSPAR 5 Star Awards

At AXA, we have partnered with Ireland’s longest established driving school, Irish School of Motoring (ISM) to keep new year’s resolutions to learn to drive on track, whilst helping save young drivers up to €400 off your insurance premium.
With the new mandatory Essential Driver Training (EDT) road safety programme now in place, AXA are launching a new initiative with The Irish School of Motoring (ISM) to support safer driving amongst learners and help young drivers get started on the road and continue the journey with us.

ISM Clare 1
Established 54 years ago in 1961, the Irish School of Motoring (ISM) is Ireland’s largest and longest established Driving School and boasts an overall 90% test pass rate. The Irish School of Motoring are a national organisation consisting of over 120 highly qualified Driving Instructors throughout Ireland who are all “ADI” Approved.
Young Drivers can get a great deal from AXA when they book the 12 driving lessons through ISM. This includes:
· 12 driving lessons with a highly qualified ADI Instructor for €369.00
· Any named driver charges reduced by 50% – up to €400.
· If policy in own name, premium will be reduced by up to €400

ISM Clare 3
Colm McGrattan, Executive Director at AXA stated ‘We are doing our best to get young drivers started safely. Getting started on the road is not cheap between, lessons, Insurance and fuel costs. At AXA we are focusing on driving down the costs by offering competitive lessons, with the skills and knowledge learned through The Irish School of Motoring whilst rewarding these young drivers with cheaper insurance.’
Adding to this, Karl Walsh, Managing Director at ISM, said: “After 54 years in the business, ISM is proud to partner with AXA Insurance for these great offers. Over the years it has been our privilege to set tens of thousands of students on the road to being safe and competent motorists. We are delighted with this partnership which will give our learner drivers and AXA Insurance customer’s significant savings on their driving lessons and their motor insurance policies”.

The World’s Most Extreme Road Trips

Road trips can be one of the best experiences of your life. They’re a great opportunity to learn about different countries across the world and experience them in a unique and personal way.
One of the ideal times to go on a road trip is during a gap year; you’re young, fresh-faced and more importantly will have the time to plan a proper journey. Along with this, you’ll probably be more willing to be a bit more adventurous with your route.
With that in mind, we’ve put together a list of some of the world’s most extreme driving routes for the adrenaline junkies out there.

Trans Siberian image

Trans-Siberian Highway, Russia
This rather substantial network of highways will take you across the whole of Russia. You start from the Baltic Sea and finish over 11,000 kilometers later at the Pacific Ocean on the other side of the country. On such a long journey you will see some incredible sights and sounds but the changing terrain and severe weather conditions make this quite a challenging drive.
The asphalt motorways of the more developed east quickly vanish as you travel west and in their place come dirt tracks, quagmires and blasts of arctic weather. You’ll need a sturdy vehicle as well as survival gear if you breakdown or get stuck.
Adrenaline Rating: 4/5

Highway Route 5

Highway Route 5 (Ruta Nacional 5), Chile
This road is famed for being the longest in Chile and stretches more than 3000km up the length of the country to the Peruvian border. The southern roads are said to offer some of the most beautiful views and forest areas in South America.
A large proportion of the roads are simple two lane highways, with only a handful of petrol stations on the way. You will also travel through the Atacama Desert, with steep inclines and equally steep drops that can catch drivers off guard. The weather is known for being very unpredictable too, incredibly dense fog is said to often suddenly descend on you without warning. The best advice for this route is to take a car with excellent MPG.
Extremity Rating: 3/5

Sichuan- Tibet Highway

Sichuan-Tibet Highway, China
This particular section of the G318 National Highway in China is absolutely breath-taking and at the same time incredibly nerve-wracking to drive on.
This stretch will see you travelling up and down thousands of kilometres of roads that carve their way across mountainous terrain. As fun as this sounds (and it is) you are facing the almost constant threat of landslides and in the harsh winters, avalanches. At the same time the long, sudden drops at your side mean you’ll need to take it slow, so be prepared for a long trip.
Be wary of the locals too, as they’re used to driving these roads and are quite ‘carefree’ with their driving style.
Extremity Rating: 4/5

Stelvio Pass

Stelvio Pass (Passo dello Stelvio), Italy
You don’t need a travel agent to tell you that a road trip around the Italian Alps would be an amazing thing to do. There’s a certain section of road though that combines beauty with an extreme driving experience: the Stelvio Pass. A smooth ribbon of tarmac snakes its way down the side of Ortler Alps and will offer you stunning picturesque views whatever the time of year.
You definitely need to be a competent driver to tackle this mountain road, or more specifically its 48 hairpin bends and its narrow straights. Another thing to consider is other drivers, unfortunately a number of accidents have been caused on this popular route by overzealous individuals who underestimate the skill required to handle these sharp corners.
The best advice is to take it easy (and make sure you take your camera).
Extremity Rating 3/5

North Yungas

North Yungas Road, Bolivia
Bolivia is a fantastic driving destination if you want to experience the sights and sounds of the Amazon rainforest as well as a variety of interesting cultures from the indigenous peoples. However, in order to do so you will have to cross what has often been referred to as the most dangerous road in the world – the North Yungas Road.
It may only be a relatively short stretch at just under 65 km, but this single track of rocky terrain perilously winds and twists its way around mountain sides. To make matters worse, most of this route is unprotected and water damaged, meaning the only thing stopping your car from falling hundreds of feet is a small, crumbling bank of rubble.
The ‘fun’ doesn’t stop there though; there are only a handful of passing points meaning you will probably have several standoffs with on-coming traffic. Be warned, the local drivers take no prisoners! This definitely isn’t one for the faint-hearted or inexperienced driver.
Extremity Rating 5/5

Car Boot Emergency Pack Essentials

When you pass your test and begin independently driving around, you immediately take on a wealth of responsibilities. There are the obvious ‘proper’ driving requirements but there is also ensuring you are safe and prepared for any unfortunate situations, including things like breakdowns, accidents and different weather conditions.

AXA - Car Boot Emergency Image
So whatever the situation, from your casual commute, to visiting the family over the winter, or driving you and your friends around on a summer road trip, we’ve put together all you need to be completely covered for every situation – including some situations you might not have thought about!
Our guide to what needs to be included in your car boot emergency pack essentials is a must-read for any young (or even old!) driver.

Basic Maintenance
First and foremost, you need to be ready and stocked up for any potential maintenance issues which includes the repairs you may have to carry out should you breakdown or get a flat tyre.
-Car Owner’s Manual: This can direct you on where and what certain parts of your vehicle are and what particular specifications they require – for example your tyre pressure and light bulb types.

Tyre Changing Equipment: This includes a full spare tyre, a car jack, foot pump, tread measurer and (if all else fails) a tyre inflator which can temporarily repair your tyre by filling it with a sealer to plug the hole while you get you to a garage.

Replacement Fluids: Screen wash (with anti-freeze in winter) and appropriate engine oil for topping up levels.

Jumper Cables: A set of red and black cables to jump-start your car should you suffer a flat battery.

A Tow Rope: In case you need a friend or family member to come and get you to tow you to a garage. This isn’t ideal, and you should always use a breakdown recovery service where possible, but having a tow rope will make sure you’re covered in all situations.

Ensuring Your Safety
Along with the maintenance of your vehicle, to ensure the safety of you and your passengers you should invest in the following:
Comprehensive Emergency Safety Kits: In these you should find basic first aid equipment as well as a road safety triangle, and emergency contact details.

Torches: You’ll need to see what you are doing if it’s dark, or even if you need to look under your vehicle, a simple solution is to get a few torches – dynamic wind-up ones preferably.

Scrapers and De-icer: A must for the Irish winter months, if you are travelling you need to be prepared for any snow and ice that might settle on your car.

Spare Blankets, Jackets and Shoes: Should you get caught in a cold snap or even be trapped in your car overnight, have enough blankets and jackets to keep everyone in the car warm. Equally, some decent boots or wellies are important for poor weather and road conditions.

Hi-vis Jackets: to ensure you can be seen clearly if your car has broken down.

A Shovel: Not just for digging yourself out of snow, but if you’ve ever been to a muddy festival you’ll know you potentially need one for getting your car unstuck from the mud.

Food and Water Supplies: A few bottles of water and some long-lasting snack food like breakfast bars or chocolate can be enough to help you and your passengers get through any long waits if you become stranded.

- A Power Pack Phone Charger: A portable phone charger is a must, especially if you’re travelling long distances, as they can be charged up before the journey, providing a safety blanket when your phone battery dies.

Maps and Keeping in Contact: It might sound obvious maps are a tried and tested way of helping you find your way home should you get lost – remember out in the country your 3G or 4G signal probably won’t be the best. At the same time there’s no harm in just simply letting someone know where you are going on your trip and when you intend to arrive.

Spare Change: Keep some money in your car for unexpected toll roads or if you need to use a roadside payphone.

Umbrellas: You’ll be surprised how important these can be should you breakdown or be stuck on the roadside in the rain.

Writing Equipment: In other words a pen and paper. Another surprisingly important little extra that can go a long way, particularly if you don’t have an electronic device to hand.

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All the serious stuff aside, we can now look at preparing you for some other emergencies you might not have thought about, starting with:

Work Emergencies
Imagine you’ve got a meeting with the boss, or an important presentation to deliver and you’ve spilt coffee or your breakfast all down your front. Worse still you’re already at the office! We’ve all been there, so to save yourself from this your car boot emergency pack should include:
Fresh Work Clothes: From shirts and shoes, to trousers, dresses and blouses. Have a spare set of appropriate attire ready for you.

Deodorant: You might have worked up a panicky sweat, be sure to mask that with some spare deodorant.

Make-up: Again, you can freshen yourself up with a touch of make-up if you think you’re looking a bit stressed.

Lads/Ladies Trips
We’re thinking for those lazy summer afternoon drives with your friends here, it’s definitely worth having the following:
Sunglasses and Hats: Keep out the sun’s glare and of course look incredibly cool at the same time.

Sports Gear: Footballs, tennis rackets, rugby balls and the rest. As well as some spare trainers for whatever sporting preferences you might have.

BBQ: You might want to be sure of the forecast first before you make this an essential, but having a disposable BBQ kit and lighter at the ready can ensure you top off your summer’s afternoon the right way.

Young Families
When kids get bored in the back seat, you certainly know about it. Equally, parents of young babies will appreciate how a fresh nappy can be a life saver, so be sure to consider:
Baby Products: Everything you can think of from nappies, spare clothes, wipes, rubbish bags and already made up milk/formula.

Gadgets: Keep the kids happy by having an iPad, tablet or gaming device ready as a means to help pacify their boredom.

Sweets and Treats: It goes without saying that kids love sweets and much like the gadgets above can be a great means of helping them to get through a long journey. Plus, you can treat yourself if you like!

 

AXA Motor Rescue

Final Back-up Cover
To be fair, this isn’t strictly something you can keep in your car boot, but as a final means of protection – and peace of mind – our breakdown cover is there for you from local to European recovery. # ad To talk to us today about AXA Motor Rescue or Breakdown Cover call AXA Assistance on 1890 25 31 87 or drop into your local branch or get a quote online.

So follow these helpful checklists and tailor them to suit the time of year and your planned journeys. By doing so you can rest assured you will be ready for whatever the roads might throw at you.

Remember to check out our AXA Plus page for free puncture repair and wheel balancing from Fast Fit
You can also pick up all your motoring essentials from Halfords, where all AXA Customers get a 10% discount

Five Best Value Cars for Young Drivers

 

image keys and money

 

Unless you happen to be very lucky, or very wealthy, most young drivers face a bit of a battle when it comes to finding and buying a car. You’ll want to find something inexpensive, economical, reliable and safe to drive – which can be quite a struggle.
You should always remember to take into consideration the mileage, NCT and service history, as well as any work done to the car before making your purchases.
To help you in your search, we’ve done the hard work for you and have found five of the best value cars out there for young drivers. These cars can be found in the more affordable second hand markets and are smaller in size, which again brings down your costs.

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#5 Toyota Yaris (2005-2009)
A popular car across Europe, this generation of the Yaris is one of the most successful models of Toyota’s vehicles. The compact size makes it easier to drive and park but this 3-door hatchback is surprisingly spacious. While the engine may be modest, it can see you making great savings with its fantastic fuel economy.
Body: 3-door hatchback
Engine: 1.0L Petrol
MPG: up to 63
Adult Safety Rating: 5*
Price: €1000-4000

girl at driving seat

#4 Opel Corsa (2006-2010)
The Corsa is a steadfast choice of car amongst young drivers. The previous generations of the Opel Corsa from the mid to late 2000s can provide you with excellent drivability and pace despite their relatively small size. While these may suit the more car-loving young driver, they still come with a top safety rating. Also depending on the age, you could find one with a variety of gadgets and conveniences.
Body: 3-door hatchback
Engine: 1.2L Petrol
MPG: up to 51
Adult Safety Rating: 5*
Price: €3000-9000

guy in car with keys#3 Seat Ibiza (2008)
If you want a reliable vehicle that is a little more stylish than your typical small car, this range of Seat Ibizas is perfect. The sleek design of this car gives it a sporty edge which is matched by the nippy petrol engine and excellent handling. Like the Corsa, this also has a top safety rating, but can give you better mileage.
Body: 3-door hatchback
Engine: 1.2L Petrol
MPG: up to 55
Adult Safety Rating: 5*
Price: €5000

#2 VW Polo TDI (2006)
This model of Volkswagen Polo is a superb choice for young drivers. The precision engineering that goes into all VWs means you are getting a durable, comfortable and well-made car. This 1.4 diesel may only have a four star safety rating, but it is an excellent car to drive and can give you great fuel economy. Their popularity and the VW prestige means they can also hold on to their value much better than other smaller cars.
Body: 3-door hatchback
Engine: 1.4L Diesel
MPG: up to 60
Adult Safety Rating: 4*
Price: €5000-7000

#1 Ford Fiesta (2010)
Arguably the best value car you can buy is this generation of Ford Fiestas. They are very similar to the current new models but can be found at more affordable prices. Much like VW, Fords are expertly built, and again their popularity means they hold on to their value well. This particular model boasts the convenience of the 5-doors and superb fuel economy that can see you make great savings. Also if you shop around you can find Fiestas with the mod-cons you tend to find on most new cars.
Body: 5-door hatchback
Engine: 1.4L Diesel
MPG: up to 69
Adult Safety Rating: 5*
Price: €5000-7000

Why not see for yourself?

Get a quote for yourself using these suggested cars and see how much you could save!
Get a quote now >>
Our Drivesave product allows you to get up to 20% discount on your AXA premium just for using a FREE smartphone app and as long as you continue to drive safely, you could earn up to 10% additional discount during the year.Take a few minutes to see what’s on offer here, talk to us today on 1890 24 7 365 or drop into your Local Branch.One of our dedicated team will be happy to discuss your insurance options with you.
If you are a student aged under 26 you could save 20% in year with the AXA Student First policy.

Glossary of Terms

Adult Safety Rating – How safe the vehicle is based on the European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP). Vehicles are crash tested and give a star rating out of five, based on how well the car protects passengers, pedestrians and the effectiveness of its safety assist devices.

Body – Is the style of the car, in this case the number of doors listed in the vehicle specifications.
Engine – The size and capacity of the engine in litres. The number of litres giving an idea of the power the engine could produce.
MPG (Miles per Gallon) – Is the suggested amount of miles the car can offer from one gallon of fuel.

Warning: In the event that the terms and conditions for mobile phone app use are not adhered to, or if AXA considers your driving behavior to be unsatisfactory, AXA has the right to cancel your policy or remove your DriveSave discounts which will result in an increase in your premium.You have chosen a Student First package. Your premium will be adjusted quarterly either up or down based on your claims experience on this policy. Your premium will cease to be reduced on a quarterly basis when you reach our maximum no claims discount.

Terms and Conditions apply.

In the Driving Seat with… a City Slicker

We talk to blogger Mahmood Ansari, of The Supercar Kids blog, about his love of driving and supercar spotting in London.

City Slicker 2

What car are you currently driving around London? BMW 3 Series M Sport Convertible

How long have you owned it? 6 months

What made you choose this car in particular? I wanted something sporty yet practical. Something that’s not too expensive to run overall in terms of insurance, fuel and maintenance, so there was no better car than this BMW. I also wanted a convertible – even if I never opened the roof thanks to London’s ‘amazing’ weather – but I still wanted the option there just in case.

What type of personality would you say your car has? Does it match your own? Sophisticated yet fun. It knows that there is a time and place for everything. There is a time to be professional and a time to have fun; a bit like me, really.

How do you find driving around London? Is it as stressful as we’d imagine?

London seems to be getting more crowded every single day. If you’re planning to go out during rush hour you might as well stay home, what should take 20 minutes takes over an hour. There is definitely a lot of stopping, so I would recommend an automatic so you can relax while driving in London traffic. However, if you know the right time for driving and the correct shortcuts, you’ll find London to be less stressful than people think.

City Slicker 1

Even though the majority of the time you’ll be stuck next to big dull buildings, there are some hidden gems that show the true beauty of London, like Richmond Park. At night time you can drive into Central London with ease and see the whole city peacefully lit up. Go to Knightsbridge and see some of the world’s most amazing and expensive cars as you cruise by.

Lots of people say that you don’t need a car in London. Are there times when you take the tube or bus instead?

To be honest, anyone can easily survive in London without ever needing to drive. Personally, I find driving a fun and peaceful experience, even if it takes twice as long as public transport, it’s still like your own sanctuary. I rarely take the tube or bus apart from where parking is impossible. That’s another thing about London, half the parking is for the residents of that area, and if not, it’s quite hard to find a parking spot, not to mention the constant worry of parking correctly.

Your car isn’t a typical “city car” – what made you choose your BMW for city driving and how does it perform in the Big Smoke?

As they say, ‘smiles per gallon’. I would rather drive an enjoyable car rather than a typical boring city car. My BMW – amongst its big brothers the 5 and 7 series – gets on quite well in the Big Smoke.

How does driving in London compare to driving in other cities?

London is definitely more packed than other cities so it’s probably less enjoyable. Everyone gets a smile on their faces as soon as they leave London and head out into the countryside.

City Slicker 3

Where would be your dream driving holiday destination?

My dream would be to not only drive alongside some amazing cars, but to look at breathtaking scenery too; somewhere like Monaco and surrounding areas, making plenty of noise in all the tunnels.

You’re very involved in the online supercar sphere – what do you enjoy about it?

No matter what background, job, location, etc. everyone involved has the same passion for supercars. It’s that passion that I love.

What future supercars are you excited about?

I’m hoping to see more of Lamborghini Veneno Roadsters being ordered, and hopefully one makes it to London, if not the rest of the UK. There are also rumours about the Lamborghini Aventador SV, so I’m curious to see how that turns out too!

 

With thanks to Mahmood Ansari of thesupercarkids.com and Pure Power Photography.

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