News in Brief

Leafield buy-in

Leafield Holdings, based in Corsham, Wiltshire, has been bought by a management buy-in team led by group managing director James Blott and chairman Nigel Forsyth, with support from venture capitalist 3i. The 140-employee company has defence, logistics, marine and commercial vehicle divisions. Turnover last year was £11m.

Shelling out for LPG

Shell is to spend £10m by 2001 on installing liquefied petroleum gas at 200 petrol stations accessible to 80% of British motorists.

Power probe

The Royal Academy of Engineering and the Royal Society are to report on nuclear power’s potential contribution to reduce greenhouse gases, in a study due out next year.

Hybrid intent

Toyota has confirmed that the Prius, the first full- production petrol-electric hybrid vehicle, will be introduced in Europe and the US by 2000. The UK will import more than 1,000 of the vehicles from Japan.

Systems swap

The controls division of TransTec and French machine tool maker PCI have agreed to manufacture and sell each other’s machining systems. TransTec will make PCI’s machining systems and automotive products in Birmingham and PCI will make TransTec’s machining centres for the aerospace industry in France.

Review in the wind

The DTI spent £1.5m in 1997-98 on wind energy projects. Results of the department’s review of renewable energy, including onshore and offshore wind energy, are due out by the end of the year.

Head in the clouds

GEC-Marconi Avionics and Honeywell have completed an intensive flight demonstration of their helmet-mounted cueing system on a Dutch air force F-16.