LJK on . . . diesel - Roger Jones
From Drive on! The social history of the motor car by L. J. K. Setright (2002: Palawan Press; 2003: Granta)

p. 139, footnote 109
"Unlike petrol, which evaporates very quickly, diesel oil is persistent in its liquid form. When it is spilled on the filling-station forecourt, it remains where it falls, spreading in puddles which soil the shoe-soles of all who pass by and notably making slippery the soles of the driver when he gets back in his car and addresses the pedals. When it is spilled on the road, it remains there for ages, and when it eventually sinks into the pores of the tarmac it will be floated up to the surface again by the next rainfall. So long as it persists, it is the most dangerous skid-inducer of modern times, having in particular killed a multitude of motorcyclists and maimed many more. Spilt diesel is indeed the most criminal of noisome emissions, but not the only one for which the engine can be blamed: there is much evidence that its exhaust fumes are strongly carcinogenic, but because early emissions legislation was aimed only as such exhaust ingredients as aggravated smog, this accusation was largely ignored. Efforts to revive it [emissions legislation, presumably] have been actively resisted not only by the engine manufacturers but also by the transport industry whose heavy goods vehicles rely on diesel to the exclusion of all else."
LJK on . . . diesel - Round The Bend
Gawd Roger. You're not going to set up a thread for every page of the book are you?
LJK on . . . diesel - Paul I
Clearly not a bestseller....the best bit of fiction that i've read this year!
LJK on . . . diesel - Altea Ego
More setright tripe

From his senile period
TourVanMan TM < Ex RF >
LJK on . . . diesel - madf
I read Setright in his CAR era: brilliant.
Then stopped reading. Tried him again in late 1990s and have to agree with TVM.. he HAD lost the plot imo and not moved with the times...

LJK on . . . diesel - Lud
Is everyone trying to claim that diesel spills on roads are not a danger to motorcyclists?

He did overwrite a bit, old whiskers, but he didn't often talk carp.
LJK on . . . diesel - type's'
I think everything he says is absolutely true - not a word of fiction in it - it is all factual.
I'm suprised people think it is fiction.
You may disagree with his style of writing but you cannot argue with the facts.
The only reason diesel gets away with its emmisions is because of the global warming and CO2 problem, that is where the focus is and diesel happens to produce lower CO2 than petrol - in the mean time it pumps out much higher levels of Nox and cancer causing chemicals than petrol does. (According to the Fuel Companies).
The CO2 debate is a 2 sided argument and only one half the problem lies in CO2 production, the other half lies in the fact that we are systematially destroying the earths ability to convert it back into the good stuff.
The guy is one of the most respected writers in motoring journalism - a reputation he did not gain through writing rubbish.
It always amazes me how when one cannot argue with the facts they revert to character assasination.
Argue the facts don't just call him an idiot and not present any facts to counter his statements.
Shame on you.
LJK on . . . diesel - mike hannon
Having hit the tarmac a few times due to diesel spills and suffered a very nasty moment a few years ago when the Volvo 940 estate I was driving went straight on across a traffic light-controlled junction because of diesel on the road I guess I am biased.
But how any biker could find it in themselves to drive a diesel car or whatever defeats me.
LJK on . . . diesel - JH
Don't forget that LJKS was also a motorcyclist and that was, at least in part, the reason for his aversion.

And I've already read the book thanks.

LJK on . . . diesel - Altea Ego
I used to read LJK in car. He then spent a year or three burbling on about the Sirrocco, the Prelude and the Bristol being the pinnacle of motor engineering. Anything else was the spawn of the devil, nothing was balanced in any way, in very flowery and beautifully written prose of course.

Utterly senile in later years.

TourVanMan TM < Ex RF >
LJK on . . . diesel - massey
Ok! so he had an aversion to diesel.

So what type of engine could possibly take the economical place of a diesel as fitted to a large HGV. Certainly not petrol!
LJK on . . . diesel - cheddar
Don't forget that LJKS was also a motorcyclist and that was,
at least in part, the reason for his aversion.

I am a motorcyclist though still drive a diesel!

Diesel spills are dangerous (that's about all Setright got right in that paragraph) though they are avoidable, generally caused by over filled HGVs.
LJK on . . . diesel - PeterRed
LJK was hospitalised after dropping his Suzuki GS500 on a diesel slick. That may have explained his bias..............

His prose was entertaining but I agree that his blinkered admiration for his Sirocco, Prelude and Bristol to the exclusion of everything else was a bit irritating.
LJK on . . . diesel - andymc {P}
"... much evidence that its exhaust fumes are strongly carcinogenic ..."
- whereas petrol fumes have many and varied health benefits. More benzene, anyone?

Vroom, vroom - mmm, doughnuts ...
LJK on . . . diesel - Glaikit Wee Scunner {P}
diesel happens to produce lower CO2 than petrol

err Type S have you seen the Toyota Prius advert?
I wasna fu but just had plenty.
LJK on . . . diesel - Lud
Two posts at least have claimed that Setright only liked the Scirocco, the Prelude and Bristols, and despised all other cars.

This is total and utter garbage. Setright had his prejudices all right, but he liked cars and complex mechanisms in general. He didn't allow his prejudices to cloud (or totally eliminate) his judgement. Unlike some others one could mention.
LJK on . . . diesel - madf
You are surely not suggesting JC was prejudiced in his various diatribes against Vectras?

LJK on . . . diesel - Lud
diatribes against Vectras?

I was thinking about various characters closer to home actually madf...
LJK on . . . diesel - Altea Ego
He means me madf.
TourVanMan TM < Ex RF >
LJK on . . . diesel - bathtub tom
Didn't he have a regular spot in Diesel car (later to be Diesel car and 4WD) magazine years ago?
LJK on . . . diesel - Lud
He means me madf.

There are several of you though.

I may even be one myself sometimes late at night.
LJK on . . . diesel - madf
I'm not one of those you think are prejudiced surely?

I just think GM made cars and those of their subsidiary cars are badly designed and bulit , All French cars are unreliable, and VAG means Very Ancient Garbage.

Apart from that I'm as impartial as Gordon Brown is charismatic.

Ask Honest John

Value my car