How to Drive in the Snow and Ice with Pulman Group

How to drive in the snow

We know that snowy conditions can make driving a real challenge! With this in mind it is crucial to prepare yourself adequately before embarking on a journey in the snow. It is also worth knowing how to prepare yourself and your car, while also considering different ways to approach your driving when faced with adverse driving conditions! So here are our Pulman top winter driving tips…

Plan your journey

Allow for more time than you normally would have before you leave! You should clear your car windows, mirrors, lights and the top of your roof of snow before setting off – driving with snow on your car could result in you breaking the law!

Make sure your auto wiper is switched off before turning the ignition on as this could blow the wiper control fuse if they are frozen to the screen. Your wipers need to be in good working order so you’re able to keep your window clean

Check your screen wash – use a good quality screen wash that protects down to at least -35 to prevent the water from freezing. If you don’t your windscreen wipers could be rendered useless in extreme conditions!

Pack for the worst

Here’s our handy checklist for what to bring with you on your winter adventures!

  • Torch (windup so that the battery doesn’t run out)
  • Hi-vis vest
  • Blanket
  • Food
  • Drink
  • Spare Screenwash
  • De-Icer
  • Ice Scraper
  • Shover
  • Phone Charger
  • Map
  • First Aid Kit
  • A Warning Triangle
  • Some Jump Leads

How to tackle driving during the snow

  • wear comfortable and dry footwear
  • Accelerate gently, use low revs and change up to higher gears as quickly as possible
  • Move off in second gear which will help reduce wheel slip – some cars have winter mode which does the same job
  • Get your speed right and maintain safe stopping distances between you and the car ahead of you – you should leave as much as 10 times the recommended gap
  • Prepare for uphill by leaving plenty of room so you can maintain a constant speed without changing gear
  • When approaching a bend, brake before you actually start to turn the steering wheel. If you car does lose grip – don’t panic – they key is to take your foot off the accelerator and make sure your wheels are pointing in the direction you want to go in
  • If you do encounter a skid, steer gently into it
  • When driving in heavy snow use dipped headlights
  • If visibility drops below 100m put you fog lights on
  • Controls such as brakes, as well as steering, accelerator and even gear changing should be operated smoothly and slowly

For more information, visit here. Remember, drive safely!

SKODA Karoq Review

The SKODA Karoq is the smaller sibling of the Kodiaq – one of the best models in its class – so expectations were high when the Karoq was launched back in January, and its safe to say that the Karoq has exceeded all of those expectations. Equipped for all of life’s adventures, this self assured and spacious SUV, it is a must-have for navigating through city life and exploring new frontiers.

As you can see, from every angle the Karoq’s refined exterior styling leaves a powerful impression. While it is very slightly smaller than the Kodiaq it still gives families that practical edge! Thanks to its VarioFlex seats – these can be completely removed – the boot space can vary from a large 470 litres, to a huge 558 litres depending on what you need to carry.

Boot space

There are four trim levels to choose from, with even the entry-level Karoq well equipped with features such as 17-inch alloy wheels, DAB radio, Bluetooth and dual-zone climate control. Stepping up to the SE Technology adds the VarioFlex seats, front and rear parking sensors, adaptive cruise control, a panoramic sunroof. The SE L trim adds in an eight-inch touch screen, satellite navigation, a reversing camera, LED headlights and Smartlink.


For that extra peace of mind, you can be reassured that the Karoq was awarded the full five-star score for crash safety by Euro NCAP in late 2017. It is fitted with an impressive arsenal of safety equipment including front assist autonomous emergency breaking with Predictive Pedestrian Protection (the vehicle can recognise and attempt to avoid pedestrians in its path), Multi-collision Brake  (automatically activates brakes after an accident), Emergency Assist (brings the car to a halt if it detects the driver has collapsed) and blindspot monitoring.


Additionally, by enabling you to be fully online on the move, the Karoq helps you stay connected wherever your adventure takes you! Thanks to its smart assistance systems, you’ll also know the best places to park, shortcuts and routes to avoid.

It is also award winning! WhatCar? named the SKODA Karoq as the Best Family SUV between £20,000 – £30,000 as part of the 2018 WhatCar? Awards.

Want to know more? Visit our website here!

Driving through the ages with the new Volkswagen Polo

For over 40 years, the Volkswagen Polo has been one of the worlds popular superminis. Originally starting life as an Audi 50, the small but perfectly formed Polo has always boasted sharp design and stylish bodywork. Today, the sixth generation Polo continues to outshine the rest. It now shares characterises with some of the bigger models, boasting 351 litres of boot space and the latest safety technology.

The Volkswagen Polo Mk 1

The supermini end of the car market has always been fiercely competitive. If a car was to succeed in this segment, it had to offer something distinctive with high quality. The original polo was all of the above and became an instant hit in Europe.

Mk 1 Polo

The Volkswagen Polo Mk 2

In 1981, the Volkswagen Polo debuted a new style, one that featured a more practical sloping back window. The Mk2 came in two body styles, the hatchback and the coupe. The Polo was still the supermini of choice and in 1983 sales hit the 1,000,000 mark

Mk 2 Polo

The Volkswagen Polo Mk 3

The third generation Polo threw out the hard lines and the shar corners. The Polo was reinvented as a curved, sporty model. Complete with 5 doors, power steering and ABS – a world first for Volkswagen – the Polo was ahead of its time.

This model will undoubtedly be remembered for the GTI badge on the boot lid and front grill that appeared in 1998. The Polo GTi was the most powerful Polo yet, coming in the shades Diamond Black Pearly Effect, Flash Red and Satin Silver Metallic.

Mk 3 Polo

The Volkswagen Polo Mk 4

September 2001 marked the introduction of the fourth gen Polo which shared platforms with the likes of the SKODA Fabia and the SEAT Ibiza. It is instantly recognisable from the front end due to its quad like headlights – similar to those on the Lupo.

This model made sure it stayed cool with the introduction of automatic aircon and advanced safety features such as ESP.

Mk 4 Polo

The Volkswagen Polo Mk 5

The Polo Mk 5 was debuted at the 2009 Geneva Motor Show. This Polo continued its reign as of the worlds most popular superminis, and just one year later it was named the European Car of the Year. This fifth generation added space, a range of impressive engines and a build quality that was second to none.

Mk 5 Polo

The Volkswagen Polo Mk 6

Today, the Polo is bigger, sleeker and more expressive than ever. Boasting Volkswagen’s innovative Active Info Display, and fantastic safety features, the new Polo is for all of life’s adventures! 

Mk 6 Polo

Want to know more about the new Polo? Click here

Are You Eligible for Motability? We answer all your questions about the scheme!

Since the Motability Scheme was set up in 1997 it has helped millions of disabled people and families to gain independence and freedom. Here at Pulman, we have a team of trained experts ready to answer any Motability questions you might have and help you find your dream car!

With the Motability Scheme, you can simply exchange all, or part of, your Mobility allowance to lease a brand new SEAT, SKODA or Volkswagen. Every lease is all-inclusive, which means all you have to do is fuel up and off you go! The standard lease is over three years and the payments are simply deducted from your mobility allowance every four weeks and paid directly to Motability. At the end of your lease you have the option to simply hand your car back, or if like most customer you choose to stay with us, you can just pick a new car to lease!

So, who can join the Motability Scheme?

If you receive any of the allowances below, and have at least 12 months remaining on your award, you are eligible to apply or join the scheme. Or if you are the parent of a child ages three or over, who receive the allowance, you qualify too!

  • Higher Rate Mobility Component of Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
  • War Pensioners’ Mobility Supplement (WPMS)
  • Armed Forces Independence Payment (AFIP)
  • Enhanced Rate of the Mobility Component of Personal Independence Payment (PIP)

And what is included on the Motability scheme?

  • Insurance
  • Servicing and maintenance
  • Full breakdown assistance
  • 20,000 mileage allowance per year of lease
  • Window and windscreen repair or replacement
  • Many adaptations at no extra cost
  • Replacement tyres

What is fantastic about the Motability Scheme is you choose who drives! You don’t have to drive to lease a car through the scheme. Many of our customers don’t drive – instead they select a named driver who drives the car on their behalf. So, your car could be driven by a family member, friend or carer.

Here at Pulman we make sure we deliver a fantastic customer experience, and at Pulman SKODA we were thrilled to be awarded with a regional award for our work with the Motability Car Scheme. This accolade was part of a programme of awards, launched last year by Motability Operations, to recognise and reward outstanding customer service.

motability award

For more information about the Motability Scheme and find your local dealer, visit or call 0800 953 7000

For more information on our Motability offers visit:

How to install your Volkswagen Connect and DataPlug

Have you ever wanted your very own driving assistant? With the FREE Volkswagen DataPlug you can get information about your car directly on your smartphone with the Volkswagen Connect app! Easily review each journey, route and mileage taken. You can know when your car is due its next service or how much fuel you have left.

How to install your Volkswagen Data Plug

Installing your Volkswagen Data Plug is easy! Check out our video below for a useful guide… 

The first thing you need to do is download the Volkswagen Connect app onto your smartphone. When you open the app the Terms of Use will appear, when you agree the app will ask you to pair your smartphone with your car.  It will guide you through a checklist – first start the ignition, set your phone to mobile data and activate Bluetooth on your phone. Now you will be asked to enter a pin, this can be found on your Data Plug or on the packaging. Next, insert the data ply into your on-board diagnosis (in the footwell on the drivers side, beneath the steering wheel) confirm connection. 

Now you can add a profile name and a picture. Next up add your registration details and register to make use of all services. Enter your email address and a password and press register. You will then receive an email with a confirmation link – and that’s it! 

How does it work? 

A better overview for trips:

Your digital vehicle log records all your journeys from start to finish, together with the data, time, duration, route taken and cost per journey.

Driving style, for more efficiency:

In the Driving Style section, the app records acceleration, braking, speed, rpm and coolant temperature data in a graph. With this information it automatically calculates your “Efficient Driving” score.

Fuel Monitor – for greater control over costs:

The Fuel Monitor records all your fuel fill-ups and stories the data in a handy overview. If the app notices that you have filled up with fuel, you automatically receive a notification and have the option of adding additional details.

Parking Space – for more time:

This shows where your vehicle is located, displaying that time you parked as well as two buttons – Route and Share – showing how you get there and allowing you to send the vehicle location to other passengers, or as a detailed with more information, such as when paid-parking is set to end

Challenges – for more excitement on the road

Enjoy your drive with tasks and changing challenges, test yourself against other Volkswagen drivers and collect points and trophies

Service Partners – For more convenience

This displays out Service Partners and allows you to call them directly from the app, enabling you to stay in touch with Volkswagen Service even when you’re on the road

Assistance Call – For more safety

This section enables you to directly contact the 24-hour breakdown services or the Volkswagen Roadside Assistance at the touch of a button if you have a technical problem or even an accident

My Volkswagen – For more information and safety:

A quick fitness check-up of your Volkswagen. This section of the app provides you with all the most important information about your vehicle in one place and displays alerts explaining issues or recommending the course of action

To claim your FREE DataPlug click here 

Volkswagen Up GTI Review


Fun, easy to manoeuvre and surprisingly spacious, the new Volkswagen Up! is a small car with big ideas! Combining sleek design and clever technology, it is one of the best city cars around! 




You can tell the GTI apart from the regular up by the GTI styling pack. Our new ‘Pocket Rocket‘ comes complete with a GTI badge on the front, boot and front wings, red stripes across the grille and boot, sporty alloys and a surprisingly large spoiler. 


Up! GTI from the back


Inside, there are lots of GTI tweaks too. You get GTI style tartan cloth seats, a GTI gear knob, red contrast stitching on the steering wheel and even red mood lighting across the dashboard. You also get a small colour screen and a cradle for your smartphone. 


Up! GTI interior


Even more practical is the Up! GTI comes in 3 door and 5 door variations. If you plan on using the back seats then the 5 door would be most convenient. As with all the Up! models, passengers in the back won’t be rubbing shoulders as it is surprisingly spacious. 


Up! GTI Gear stick


Compact dimensions, a low weight and a powerful motor with a maximum speed of 197 km/h: This is the new Volkswagen up! GTI. Check out the newcomer meeting a Golf GTI of the first generation!


The Up! GTI is officially open for order! Want to take our Up! GTI for a spin? Visit Pulman Volkswagen in Sunderland and Durham. View our Up! GTI offers here

ŠKODA Announces Karoq Partnership with Paloma Faith

We are very excited that ŠKODA has announced a new partnership with leading UK artist Paloma Faith, in the brand’s next instalment of its Driven by Something Different campaign.

Paloma, whose unique spirit and style are often recognised beyond music, will be the brand’s first ambassador for the ŠKODA Driver’s Seat Initiative. The programme, which will work with the Prince’s Trust, celebrates individuality by giving young, creative people the opportunity to shape their own future and make a positive impact on their local community.

ŠKODA has chosen the 1969 hit song ‘Make Your Own Kind of Music’, as the soundtrack to support the campaign. Paloma has recorded her own version of the classic song that will feature in the brand’s forthcoming Karoq TV ad that will air in March. The song’s lyrics, “make your own kind of music, even if nobody else sings along”, echoes the message to promote individuality and encourage people to unlock their full potential.

Paloma Faith said, “The idea to inspire people to ‘make their own kind of music’ is extremely powerful, and I am excited to be working alongside ŠKODA to bring this to life.

“The Prince’s Trust is a charity that is close to my heart and was an organisation that helped me when I was a teenager. The new initiative that we are launching will provide real opportunities to young people, helping them achieve whatever they dream possible.”

Kirsten Stagg, Head of Marketing, ŠKODA UK, added, “Paloma embodies the Driven by Something Different attitude. She has an individual self-confidence, an infectious optimism, and a spirit that sets her apart from the rest. We feel privileged to be working with Paloma as we launch the Driver’s Seat Initiative”

The Driver’s Seat Initiative will be available via The Prince’s Trust existing Get Started programme.

Want to know more about the SKODA Karoq? Visit our website here

Local children charity receives £6,250 to start 2018

Graham Wiley Check(Photo left to right: Graham Wylie CBE, Michael Lines from Pulman Group, Angie Jenkison from Graham Wylie Foundation, Natalie Wilson from Pulman Group)

A fantastic £6,250 has been raised for the Graham Wylie Foundation by Pulman Group. The Graham Wylie Foundation is one of the few charitable foundations anywhere in the world that hand 100% of donations to deserving causes.

Graham Wylie CBE, the founder meets all the running, staff and administration costs so that every single penny that is raised is donated to helping, inspiring and educating children across the North East. Graham Wylie CBE comments, “I was brought up in the North East. It’s where I set up business, it’s where I live and it’s where I’m bringing up my own children. The aim of my Foundation is to create a new way of giving, which will benefit children in our region for generation after generation after generation”.

Pulman Group have once again chosen the Graham Wylie Foundation as one of their chosen charities to support in 2018. In 2017 Pulman Group the family owned retailer, who represent Volkswagen, SEAT and SKODA throughout the North East, sponsored the Paul Collingwood Testimonial golf day. Hosted at Close House Golf Club, a total of £6,250 was raised for the Graham Wylie Foundation.

Michael Lines, Head of Operations comments, “Every year we choose a local charity to support. One of the main reasons we chose the Graham Wylie Foundation was because they guarantee 100% of funds raised goes to helping local children in the North East.

As a North East family business, ensuring that we support our local area is of key importance. We are very proud to have raised over £6,250 for the foundation last year and look forward to 2018 to see if we can better this amount.”

Pulman Group, are celebrating 20 years of representing Volkswagen in the North East, along with SEAT and SKODA. Michael continues: “We are very proud to be celebrating 20 years of Pulman Volkswagen this year and more importantly that we are now the only family owned retailer for Volkswagen in the North East. We deliver a fantastic customer experience and choose to put people first, ensuring that level of service you can only expect with a family run business.”

Graham Wylie CBE commented: “A huge thanks to all the staff and clients at Pulman Group for their continued support, £6,250 is an incredible amount to raise. 100% of this will be given to local charities in our aim to Help, Educate and Inspire the children and young people of the North East.”

The foundation had a busy year fundraising in 2017 and this March, 2018 will see the eagerly awaited opening of the new Music Therapy Centre built and funded by the Graham Wylie Foundation and run by Nordoff Robbins. This is the first dedicated Music Therapy Centre outside of London and will deliver life transforming music therapy to most isolated children in our community, and in other challenging circumstances such as autism, brain injuries and cancer treatment.

The foundation have lots of exciting projects that will benefit from further funding in 2018. The foundation are looking for volunteers to take on the challenge of  the Great North Run, they have some guaranteed places left, £55 per place with the foundation asking individuals to raise £200 minimum. If you’re up for the challenge go to