Overdrive Podcast Radio Program Issue 6 -2021

Overdrive: Fuel Cells stall; Is Mapping the transport future; More on Latin helped made a better driver!

Hello and welcome to Overdrive, a program that dabbles in the mystical world of cars and transport. I’m David Brown 


  • Cars sales for the first month of 2021 (2:02)
  • One big trend is vehicles for home deliveries (3:00)
  • Is mapping the new holy grail of motoring and transport developments (4:15)
  • General Motors net-zero carbon status by 2040/Nissan’s conservative target for carbon neutral (5:14)

Discussion subjects

Brian Smith joins the program to discuss the technical to the quirky including

  • Scania Ditches Fuel Cell Trucks To Focus On Full Electric (6:23)
  • Mapping – how it is affecting the plans for and your uses of the road system (11:25)
  • Can learning Latin make you a better race and rally driver (19:34)
  • Jaguar C-type is 70 years old but what colour should your replica be (25:11)



Vehicle Sales for January 2021 from VFACTS

January 2021 vehicle sales figures continue a three-month growth trend compared to the same period a year ago.

For January, the sales numbers are up 11% and for the latest three-month period the rise is 12%.

January sales are typically lower than other months, but several developments appear to be consistent with on-going trends.

Private car sales and heavy trucks account for all the growth, with declines in the other categories of Business, Government and Rentals.

Of the top 10 vehicles, eight are utes or SUVs. Toyota Hilux is the number one best seller; Ford Ranger is number two.  The Toyota Corolla in 6th place and the Hyundai i30 in 7th place, are the only two passenger cars in the top ten and both have declined in sales for the month.

The greatest SUV growth in absolute numbers in in the two smallest category.

 Delivery vans and trucks – is this the biggest shake-up from COVID?

Another significant trend has been the increase sales in small delivery vans up 20%, larger delivery vans up 63% and small trucks (3.5 to 8 tonnes) up 40%.

Bill Gillespie is the Vice President – Brand and Franchise Development for Hino trucks Australia whose overall sales are up 50%

[00:02:05] So the online business in Australia as a percentage of retail went from 13 per cent to something in the range of 24 per cent of all retail. So that’s almost a doubling of last mile delivery business. So so what that’s made, of course, is that that whole logistics work has been shifted and turned upside down in a very short space of time. So, yeah, I think big shifts and big environmental, economic and social shifts, that will mean this is the way the world’s going to be from now on in. I would suspect.

 Is mapping the new holy grail of motoring and transport development

HERE Technologies, founded by three major German car manufacturers and specialising in digital mapping systems, is helping companies make the most from they transport data.

Managing the collection of data that are good for their business is the first step but then they might package and sell it to other organisations such as governments or no-competing bodies, who use the transport system and are seeking their own efficiencies in their operations.

But it is not just throwing together a few available numbers. Stanimira Koleva is the Senior Vice President for Asian Pacific and Japan for HERE technologies.

[00:05:14] And these are these are people that everybody has on a huge amount of data. The question is, as you mentioned earlier, it’s not just having the data, but really meaningfully using it and being able to interpret it and then also provide privacy and security aspects of that data.

General Motors net-zero carbon status by 2040/Nissan’s conservative target for carbon neutral

General Motors has announced its intention to achieve net-zero carbon status by 2040—and that includes “an aspiration to eliminate tailpipe emissions from new light-duty vehicles by 2035”.

We assumed that “light duty vehicles” includes passenger cars, pickups and SUVs.

GM is said to have shaken up the market with its announcement but it could be just positioning itself to withstand further government pressure to reduce pollution.

Nissan’s Leaf electric vehicle was early onto the market but remains its only EV sold around the world. Nissan has a more conservative aim to achieve carbon neutrality for its operations and vehicle life cycles by 2050.

Nissan said it would electrify every model in the “key markets” of Japan, China, the United States, and Europe by the early 2030s. That goal doesn’t apply to the rest of the world, and could include hybrid and mild-hybrid vehicles.


You can find more information at Driven Media or previous programs are available as podcasts on iTunes or Spotify. OR our Facebook site OverdriveCity

Originally broadcast 6 February 2021 across Community Broadcasting Association of Australia (CBAA) and Torque Radio affiliated commercial radio channels and has a weekly audience of over 450,000.


About David Brown 531 Articles
David’s boyhood passion for motor cars did not immediately lead to a professional role in the motor industry. A qualified Civil Engineer he specialised in traffic engineering and transport planning. What followed were various positions including being seconded to a government think-tank for the planning of transport firstly in Sydney and then for the whole of NSW. After working with the NRMA and as a consultant he moved to being an independent writer and commentator on the broader areas of transport and the more specific areas of the cars we drive. His half hour motoring program “Overdrive” has been described as an “informed, humorous and irreverent look at motoring and transport from Australia and overseas”. It is heard on 22 stations across Australia. He does weekly interviews with several ABC radio stations and is also heard on commercial radio in Sydney. David has written for metropolitan and regional newspapers and has presented regular segments on metropolitan and regional television stations. David is also a contributor for AnyAuto