When it comes to new cars for 2012, there’s a grand total of 127 models scheduled for launch – a bumper crop to be sure! No matter where you look, from super minis to super cars, 4x4s to electric cars, there’s sure to be something to tweak your interest.
Throughout the year, all of the major manufacturers are updating their ranges and introducing new models, so I’ll be keeping an eye on them as we go through 2012 and report on those scheduled for launch in the coming month. And of course I hope to bring you my views on each new car as they arrive…so let’s take a look at what’s new this month:
The Audi S8 is the new head of the Audi S model family – a large and luxurious saloon that can deliver sublime comfort or supreme excitement as required. The new twin-turbo 4.0-litre V8 TFSI in the S8 generates no less than 520PS. The result is outstanding performance with the sprint from zero to 62mph taking just 4.2 seconds, and top speed is electronically capped at 155mph.
BMW X1 Facelift
Revised exterior styling combined with a subtlety evolved cabin.
New all-diesel range of engines with BMW TwinPower Turbo technology and EfficientDynamics
New Sport and xLine models join traditional SE and M Sport
BMW 6 Series Gran Coupé
BMW’s first four-door coupé * Elegant and sporty classic grand tourer * Stretched wheelbase improves cabin space * Third model joins the 6 Series range * Two petrol and one diesel engine to be offered * New 450hp twin-turbo V8 heads engine line-up.
Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback – Facelift
A minor facelift to Chevrolet’s Cruze will see a remodelled front fascia, modified head-lamp interiors and fog lamps, and new wheel styles on the exterior and refinements to the center console and a greater choice of seat finishes for the interior for the cut-price Vauxhall Astra rival. Other improvements include a more efficient 1.7-litre diesel engine and a step up in interior quality. The impressive new diesel power plant emits just 117g/km CO2 and returns a credible best/72.4mpg ensuring free road tax for the first year and – for company car drivers, a benefit-in-kind tax commitment of just 17 per cent.
Chevrolet Cruze Estate
From £14,400 (est)
As well as the saloon and hatchback Cruze models, Chevrolet will complete the Cruze range with its third offering in the form of a more practical estate. Power will come from the new a 130bhp 1.7-litre VCDi engine and there will be plenty of standard equipment, including cruise control, 17-inch alloys and climate control.
The new 300C will be a giant step forward for Chrysler, offering a more comfortable and quiet drive with a significantly higher-quality interior. There’s no petrol V8, though. Instead, the new 300C will be available only with a 3.0-litre V6 turbo diesel producing a healthy 236bhp and delivering a spine-squashing 540Nm of torque and will be matched to a 5-speed auto. While not yet confirmed, there is talk of a newly-developed eight-cog autobox later this year.
Price: £90,000 (est)
Based on the Karma, the Surf is a more practical shooting brake-style estate. It uses the same range-extending hybrid powertrain, offering an identical 5.9-second 0-62mph time and more than 100mpg in electric-only ‘Stealth Mode’. Fisker hopes to tempt people out of conventional estates and sports cars.
* Range features new 135PS GDI petrol and 128PS CRDi diesel engines *
* Improved fuel consumption and CO2 emissions from just 97 g/km *
* Available with a new Kia-developed Dual-Clutch Transmission *
Designed, engineered and manufactured exclusively in Europe and sharing a platform with the new but dire Hyundai i30, the all-new Cee’d should move Kia closer to the VW Golf and Ford Focus than ever before, offering impressive quality and value. The new Cee’d will add a sharper design and sportier handling.
From £9,995 (Access 1.0-litre VTi)
With styling lifted from the sleek SR-1 concept car and a classy, modern interior, Peugeot’s latest super mini has already caused quite a stir. Three and five-door versions are available from launch, featuring different grilles and design features to help set them apart. Despite being 70mm shorter than its predecessor, as well as slightly lower, there’s more room inside than in the 207, with boot space expanded to 285 litres. The new model is also 110kg lighter in a bid to improve fuel economy. A choice of five diesel engines will be available, with outputs ranging from 70bhp to 115bhp. Even the most powerful version promises to emit less than 99g/km. The UK range is offered in five trim levels – Access, Access+, Active, Allure and Feline – with an exciting 3-door ‘Ice Velvet’ Limited Edition, available from launch.
Peugeot 508 RXH
New top-spec 508 SW is Peugeot’s answer to Audi’s Allroad models. The jacked-up 508 RXH has a 200bhp 2.0-litre HDi HYbrid4 drivetrain, with a diesel driving the front wheels and an electric motor the rears. All-electric mode helps it return 67.2mpg and emit only 109g/km. The 508 RXH is a distinctive, top-of-the-range, premium specification vehicle that has features over and above the 508 Saloon HYbrid4. Exclusively available in the SW estate body style, and combined with the HYbrid4 powertrain, it has a raised stance, original style features and bespoke 18” Attila alloy wheels. Other features include front and rear parking aid and parallel parking assist, panoramic glass roof, Colour Head Up display, USB point and acoustic laminated side windows with tint on rear.
From £7,630 (1.0-litre, 3-cyl, 60ps, 3-door S trim)
Available in 3- and 5-door, S, SE and Elegance trim, the all-new Citigo is Skoda’s version of the VW up! and SEAT Mii and with its combination of good looks, low running costs and a quality interior, it makes downsizing more appealing than ever before. The newcomer is a very attractive alternative, as it will come with more standard equipment than either of its rivals, yet will cost £500 less than the VW. On the road, the 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine has all the power you need for a city car, while handling and refinement are both excellent. Interior and boot space are equally impressive, making the Citigo strong across the board.
It’s the Prius Toyota should have built long ago. With two extra seats, more head and legroom and increased luggage space, the Prius+ is far more practical than its smaller sibling. Behind the third-row of seats, 200 litres of luggage space is available but with the third row stowed, this figure rises to 505 litres. The Prius+ in T4 trim produces 96g/km of CO2 and returns a fuel economy of 68.9mpg (4.1l/100km), while the T-Spirit is rated at 101g/km and 64.2mpg (4.4l/100km), respectively.
Toyota Yaris HSD
* The UK’s most affordable hybrid * Three equipment grades: T3, T4 and T Spirit *
Lowest-in-class CO2 emissions from 79g/km, delivering zero road tax. It may be compact, but it is big on clever technology: every element of the hybrid system has been made smaller and lighter so that it can be fitted to Yaris without reducing the space available in both the cabin and the boot. The new development of Toyota’s smooth, quiet and highly efficient Hybrid Synergy Drive system, uses a 1.5-litre VVT-i petrol engine, nickle-metal hydride battery pack and CVT transmission. Combined cycle fuel consumption figures are 80.7mpg (T3 and T4 models) and 76mpg (T Spirit).
- One In 10 New Vehicles Will Be Diesel In 2015, Bosch Says; Here’s Why (greencarreports.com)
- How Much Myth-Busting Will The Chevy Cruze Diesel Need? (greencarreports.com)
- Diesel Sales Trending Upward; Chevy Gearing Up (elonmusktesla.wordpress.com)
- Cars That Should Get Diesel Engines In The U.S., Now! (greencarreports.com)
- Chevrolet Cruze Race and Road Car ad (thump.in)