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Robert Pepper

Automotive journalist specialising in 4X4s, sportscars, camping and future tech.

What my readers would do: As Land Rover Managing Director

Jaguar Land Rover just changed its boss to Thierry Bollore, which prompted me to wonder what my readers would do if they were slotted into the top job. Now bear in mind my readers are all car and 4X4 enthusiasts, so they tend to approach the job from that perspective. It’s very clear that Land […]

Why modern 4x4s break the laws of robotics

The modern vehicle is an amazing feat of engineering, and an even more amazing feat of electronic and computing design.  There are sensors everywhere, for everything – wheel speeds, steering wheel angles, all over the engine, even monitors to detect how dark or wet it is.  And soon there’ll be more, fed by data over […]

The future of automotive fun

There are, broadly, three classes of offroader.  These are the driver, the builder, and the tourer.  The driver enjoys the challenge of manouvering the vehicle across difficult terrain.  The builder enjoys the challenge of creating a vehicle that can handle the terrain.  And the tourer just wants to get there and doesn’t care how. Two […]

That’s NOT triple locked!

Don’t confuse centre and cross-axle lockers! There has been a recent trend to refer to vehicles such as the Mercedes-Benz G-Wagen as triple locked, and it’s wrong to do so, even though it’s right. In 4X4 terms, a locker always refers to a cross-axle differential locker. So when we say a vehicle has a rear […]

European Snow and Australian Sand

Experience in one of type driving is a mixed blessing when you come to try something else.  Sometimes the skills carry over, sometimes they need to be unlearned.  And other times two terrains which appear to have lots in common do not.  I’m talking here about European snow, and Aussie sand which are very different, […]

Dirty on dirty

So you own a 4WD and you use it offroad. Often it’ll get dirty in the course of those trips, but when it does, take a few moments clean it.  There is no point driving around for days or even weeks with a dirty 4WD as some misguided badge of honour – you won’t do […]

Will another hundred be enough?

Years ago a computer monitor used to be 12 inches across, and 15 was considered large. Having such a behemoth on your desk was a clear sign that you were terrifically important to the company and had done something special to have justified such an expansive display.  Now 27” monitors are dirt cheap, and TVs […]

Pride and Prejudice – Hummer H3 Review

Hummer says it’s like nothing else.  They mean the vehicle, but that also goes for the emotions. Reprint of a roadtest from 2009! The pictures show a car, but it’s not a car, it’s an emotion grenade.  Mentioning you’re driving this car is the roughly equivalent to saying you’ve dumped your partner; people instantly split […]

Should I buy a Range Rover Sport or a Defender 90?

A reader contacted me to ask for help with a vehicle buying decision.  I will assist with these queries where I can, provided I can use the information in publications.  Happy to change names and details if preferred as long as the gist of the vehicle decision is clear to the readers.  I also edit […]

More on the 4×4 fiddle blocks – forces and minimum rope lengths

The fiddle block I published a video about, and wrote about on Motofomo has generated a fair bit of interest. Here’s a couple of extra answers to questions: What’s the minimum rope for a given distance? Multiply the distance you intend to pull by 6, so for a 10m pull, allow 60m of rope. Now […]