The cars are the stars at Coventry’s free motoring extravaganza next week

University news

Wednesday 30 May 2012

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Petrolheads in the West Midlands are in for a treat on Saturday 9th June as the range of modern and classic cars set to feature at Coventry Car Day grows ever more impressive.

The free event, which will take place on University Square, will mark the first public appearance in the UK of two stunning machines from Ford and Peugeot – namely the Evos Concept and the new 208 – and will offer a rare chance to see some vintage vehicles up close.

Coventry-built classics from Alvis, Triumph and the Swift Motor Company will be on show – including a rare 1938 Alvis Speed 25 – as well as a host of modern cars designed by graduates of Coventry University’s world-renowned industrial design courses.

A motor festival in Coventry would not be complete without a line-up of Jaguar cars, and fans of the Whitley-based marque will not be disappointed – the event is set to exhibit a range of models from the current XF to the historic E-Type.

Sir Nick Scheele, former chief of Jaguar and Ford and current president of Coventry Transport Museum, is also set to deliver the prestigious annual Bugatti Lecture at 1.30pm against the backdrop of the city’s car extravaganza. Entry for the lecture – which takes place in The Hub – is free, but booking is required at

Cars on show in University Square (opposite the cathedral steps) will include:

  • a selection of Coventry-built cars from Alvis, Swift, Triumph, Humber, Hillman, Jaguar and the hydrogen fuel cell Microcab H2EV;
  • the Ford Evos Concept, created to demonstrate the company’s futuristic design ideas which will influence forthcoming models;
  • the new Peugeot 208 hatchback, which was unveiled to the world at the Geneva Motor Show in March;
  • the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG supercar, whose lead designer Mark Fetherston is a graduate of Coventry University;
  • a historic century-old Ford Model T, which will be brought along by local enthusiast Nigel Hugo;
  • a Ferrari 458 Italia and a Ferrari California, two of the newest luxury supercars from the highly-desirable Italian marque;
  • the Lightning GT, a high-performance electric vehicle with exterior styling by a Coventry University graduate;
  • the unique Ariel Atom, which represents the product of a collaboration between a transport design graduate and academic from Coventry University.

Members of the public are also being invited to take part in a Q&A session with a host of automotive industry luminaries.

The free car-themed ‘Question Time’ will take place at 3pm in The Hub after the Bugatti Lecture, and will feature a panel of automotive industry experts chaired by Autocar magazine editor-in-chief Steve Cropley. Those wishing to attend should register here.

Andrew Noakes, associate senior lecturer in Automotive Journalism at Coventry University and organiser of Coventry Car Day, said:

We’ve now got over 70 classic and modern cars on display in University Square for Coventry Car Day, which we believe to be the widest range of cars seen in the city for half a century. There’ll be something for everyone, whether you’re a fan of classics, current production cars, concepts or race cars – and we’re throwing in a few surprises as well.

For the real enthusiasts, there’s an unprecedented opportunity to come and listen to former Jaguar and Ford chief Sir Nick Scheele talk about how he sees the British automotive industry, and we’re excited to be welcoming the public to the ‘Question Time’ session in the afternoon. It’s not every day you find such an authoritative group of car experts in one room ready to answer your questions!

For the latest information on Coventry Car Day, please visit the website.

Automotive research and teaching at Coventry University

Coventry University offers the widest range of automotive research and teaching expertise of any university – covering the fields of design, engineering, business and media – and students from its courses have been graduating into leading roles in the automotive professions for over 30 years.

As well as Coventry’s globally-renowned industrial design courses – which have produced graduates such as Mark Fetherston (lead designer for the Mercedes-Benz) and John Iley (leading F1 aerodynamicist) – the School of Art and Design delivers the world’s only MA degree in Automotive Journalism, devised and run by a team of experienced current and former car magazine editors.

In 2007 the department of Industrial Design was awarded the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education for ‘Educating tomorrow’s leaders in automotive design’, and in 2005 was recognised as having the UK’s only Transport and Product Design Centre of Excellence in Teaching and Learning by the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE).

The 2012 Automotive and Transport Design Degree Show will be taking place from June 2nd – 10th on campus at Coventry University.

For further information, please contact Alex Roache, External Press & Media Relations Officer, Coventry University, on +44 (0)24 7679 5050 or email