The one major drawback about living in Scotland and working for a national (British) magazine is that any time I need to go into the office, it means a door to door trip of 182 miles, down the M74 and M6 to Leyland - and then back again afterwards.
At least I get the best bit of the M6, the bit that runs through the Shap valleys and past Killington Lake Services where it's relatively quiet until you get to the turn-off for fairy light city, Blackpool. From then on it's usually hoachin' wi' traffic.
On the other hand it is the ideal run for fuel consumption figures and this time I was driving the Volkswagen Jetta Bluemotion. It's a funny thing about the Germans, where we use the word 'green' for environmental issues, they use 'blue'. Whatever, the Bluemotion badge on the boot lid of the Jetta means it should be more fuel efficient than a Jetta without it.
It also means it has a 1.6 litre diesel engine, but it shows just how far diesel technology has advanced over recent years, for despite its miserly 104 bhp, it actually felt quicker and stronger than that. There was a bigger surprise in store.
On the run south I was averaging 75 mph (running late as usual!) and getting just short of 60 mpg (59.9!) so on the way back I tried to average 65 mph. Good job too, as I passed under a motorway bridge with a dastardly camera-van on top, but this time I was getting just shy of 70 mpg.
Well, I was impressed. Anyway, once I get it home and on to the rural runaround we'll see what happens to fuel consumption then.