News

Shell saves $600m on gas deal with Repsol

Royal Dutch Shell has saved $600m (£362m) on a deal to buy rival Repsol’s liquefied natural gas assets in Trinidad, Peru and Spain. The supermajor had agreed to buy the portfolio for $4.4bn last February, but will now only be spending $3.8bn on Repsol’s LNG work outside of North America.

David Prosser: Italian lesson for Vauxhall

Outlook More bad news for Vauxhall, the GM Europe-owned marque, which has been dumped by the British School of Motoring (BSM) as its supplier of instructors' cars. BSM customers have been learning to drive in Vauxhalls – the Corsa of late – for 16 years, but the driving school is switching to Fiat 500s.

BSM changes from Vauxhall to Fiat

Britain's biggest driving school is to replace its fleet of Vauxhall cars with Fiat models, it was announced today.

Fiat 500 c 1.2 Pop

Price: £11,300
Top speed: 99 mph 0-60mph 12.9 seconds
Consumption: 55.4 mpg
CO2 emissions: 119g/km
Best for: Mini owners who fancy a change
Also worth considering? BMW Mini convertible, Citroen C3 Pluriel, Peugeot 207 cc

Ford Ka reaches half a million

British customers have bought 500,000 of Ford's smallest car since it first went on sale in 1996. The total includes 11,000 of the second-generation version which has been on the market since January this year. The new model is, perhaps, less distinctive than the original - it looks a bit like a scaled down Fiesta, especially from the front - but has maintained a strong position in the market; Ford claims that it is still the leader in the small car segment with a share of 14 per cent.

Trail Of The Unexpected: Rooftop charm in Alberobello, Southern Italy

My first trullo was above Fasano. I'd just climbed 990 feet from the Puglian coastal plain with its large box-like masserias and suddenly there it was, a round whitewashed structure with a circular tiled roof topped off with what looked like a stone chess piece.

Fiat 500 C

Keep your cool in Fiat's latest roof-less wonder

Fiat lifts the lid on the new 500C

Fiat's strong selling 500 hatchback has been joined by this new open-topped version just in time to catch the best of the summer.

Car Choice: Commuting? Perhaps it's time to think outside the hatch

Jennifer Arkell's first car, a Fiat Seicento, was written off after an accident. She wants a replacement that is a bit larger, but in an equally low insurance bracket. Jennifer, 27, has £4,000 to spend, though she could stretch this to £5,000 for the right car. She wants decent back-seat space for occasional passengers. She covers about 5,000 to 6,000 miles a year, mostly commuting, with a few motorway trips.

Fiat's Chrysler deal finally gets motoring

Fiat's takeover of Chrysler finally went ahead yesterday after the US Supreme Court dismissed an appeal from angry creditors opposed to the deal.

US Supreme Court delays Fiat-Chrysler deal

The US Supreme Court set up the first potentially serious roadblock to the Obama administration's plans for restructuring the American auto industry, halting the sale of Chrysler to Fiat of Italy, which had been scheduled to go ahead yesterday afternoon.

Fire sale Judge approves Chrysler-Fiat deal

A judge in New York has approved the sale of most of Chrysler's operations to the Italian car maker Fiat, boosting hopes that the US company could emerge quickly from bankruptcy. The alliance with Fiat is the centrepiece of the Obama administration's "pre-packaged" restructuring of Chrysler, which it announced alongside the bankruptcy filing on 30 April.

Judge poised to rule on Fiat-led bid for Chrysler

A bankruptcy judge in the United States will rule tomorrow on whether Chrysler LLC can go forward with its plan to sell most of the company to a group headed by Italy's Fiat, and so emerge from bankruptcy protection.

GM deal agreed in Germany

Germany reached a landmark deal with Canadian auto parts group Magna, General Motors and governments to save carmaker Opel from the imminent bankruptcy of its U.S. parent, German leaders said today.

GM Europe hangs in balance as talks in Germany falter

Bridging loan negotiations in Berlin are expected to conclude today, say sources

Small cars come out top in new scrappage scheme

Motorists keen to take advantage of the car scrappage scheme launched last week must stick to small cars if they want to feel the benefit, consumer watchdog Which? has warned.

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JJ Abrams' seventh Star Wars, The Force Awakens
filmsThe first glimpse of Episode VII has gone online after weeks of anticipation
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Michael Buerk in the I'm A Celebrity jungle 2014
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Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
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Presents unwrapped, turkey gobbled... it's time to relax

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The Black Friday Vines that will destroy your faith in humanity
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The cast of Downton Abbey in the 2014 Christmas special
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The Magna Carta
archaeologyContemporary account of historic signing discovered
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Robbie Rogers: US former Leeds United footballer, 25, announced he was gay in February 2013, shortly after he left Elland Road. Rogers 'retired' after writing on his blog: 'I'm a soccer player, I'm Christian, and I'm gay.' Has since signed with Los Angeles Galaxy.
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Johnny Depp no longer cares if people criticise his movie flops
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All in a day's work: the players in the forthcoming 'Posh People: Inside Tatler'
TVGrace Dent thinks we should learn to 'hug a Hooray Henry', because poshness is an accident of birth
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Independent Travel
Burgundy
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Lake Garda
Lake Como
Bruges
Paris
Prices correct as of 28 November 2014
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game