liam bird

I'm Liam Bird, a freelance Motoring Writer based in the South Shropshire Marches. I currently write car reviews and road tests for a number of regional lifestyle magazines and newspapers which are distributed throughout Cheshire, Herefordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Worcestershire, most of Wales and beyond.

As a member of the Welsh Group of Motoring Writers I'm as happy behind the wheel of a super-mini as I am in the latest super-car. I have press accreditation with most of the major motor manufacturers, meaning that as well as always being on the look out for further commissions, I always have a number of cars arriving each month ready to review.

Find out more on my website or Twitter.

16 Oct 2012

For a while it seemed, you weren’t allowed to like 4x4’s anymore.  The merest mention of the words range or rover in the same sentence and would have your local Chums-of –the-World representatives chaining  themselves to whatever most resembled a production line before you could say “the end of the world is nigh”. It was said the majority of 4x4’s were bought by fashion conscious families who...

09 Oct 2012

I’ve always blamed Ari Vatenen, the man who once said, as only a Scandinavian rally driver can, that driving Peugeot’s 205 T16 gave him “goosebumples” Had the flying Finn not blasted past, what was then the school-boy me, in Peugeot’s all conquering 205 T16 you probably wouldn’t be reading this. I stood agog, clinging to the rope separating me from the rally stage as Ari disappeared sideways...

02 Oct 2012

It’s difficult not to have an affinity for Renault’s Twingo. The original slightly wedged shaped, bug-eyed, left-hand-drive-only version was rarely seen this side of the channel and as such was something you used to associate with European travel.

Next came the Mark II Clio based car of 2007. Significantly stronger and all together more attractive, if paradoxically, less distinctive...

25 Sep 2012

I know I’m probably not the first person to ask this: Are you sure we’re not currently going through some sort of 1980’s revival? Think about it. Heavily synthesised music dominates the charts. Skinny jeans are simply drain-pipes with a different name. We had a Royal wedding not so long ago. We’re at war (still) in the in the Middle East – don’t mention the Falklands. Millions are un-employed...

18 Sep 2012

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of driving BMW’s 640d to Northumberland and back. The 3litre twin-turbocharged diesel engine made light work of the near 700 mile round trip, the interior was a place of serenity and arrived home feeling more relaxed than I did when I left. But what exactly has any of that got to do with Fiat’s new Panda?

The answer is: You can buy a new Panda; a...

11 Sep 2012

Usually, when you’re given the keys to a new SUV you start digging out the OS maps and looking for, how shall I put this, un-chartered territory. Green lanes, gravel roads and rivers that need to be forded are all fair game. Surely that’s the point of an SUV isn’t it?  Funny then, that when Audi delivered there new Q3 to me a few days ago thoughts of getting off the beaten track weren’t the...

04 Sep 2012

If I was to say the word Porsche to you what would you envisage? A 911 probably springs to mind first and probably a Boxster too. But think a little harder what else does that name mean to you? Do you see images of Le Mans winning 956’ and 962’s or maybe 959’s blasting across the desert on the way to Dakar? What about a little 356 on the Grossglockner pass? Or perhaps your head is filled with...

27 Aug 2012

“Noddy’s been on the phone. He was wondering when he could have his car back”.
“Couldn’t you afford the other roller-skate?” “Did someone boil-wash your Golf?”

Oh ha-ha. They’re all examples of what passes for wit apparently. And they’ve all been aimed at me during my time with Volkswagen’s latest and tiniest city car to date, the Up!

At only 11feet 7inches long the Up! Is...

14 Aug 2012

Cynics and fans of the original Mini (I’m including myself on both lists) have sometimes accused BMW, makers of the “modern” MINI, for stretching the concept a little too far. Over the years we’ve seen the introduction of the Cooper and then the Cooper S. Next came the Convertible, followed by the asymmetrically doored Clubman; and soon after that, the larger- than-life Countryman, complete...

07 Aug 2012

BMW’s 3-series seems to have been around for about as long as I can remember. Launched in 1975 it’s only a couple over years (yes, honestly) younger than me, and ever since then it seems, it’s been considered the benchmark aspirational executive saloon.

Recently though, it’s faced some stiff competition.  Obvious contenders include the Mercedes C-class and Audi’s increasingly competent...

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