Developed in conjunction with Toyota, the Subaru BRZ offers an intoxicating blend of aggressive looks and razor-sharp handling at a price that won’t bust the budget. Indeed, we’ve been waiting a long time for a car like this: a low weight, low price, compact sports car.
Nissan’s range is undergoing a long-awaited refresh. The range of SUVs is possibly the broadest on the market and the funky-looking new Nissan Juke is already turning heads and bringing people into showrooms, reports Paul Murrell.
People movers are miracles of clever packaging, says Paul Murrell and the Kia Rondo is a seven-up wagon no bigger than a Corolla.
It’s the cheapest Toyota hybrid and the best to drive, and that makes the Toyota Prius c the first Toyota hybrid you’d actually want to buy. Green really is good, says Isaac Bober.
The Volkswagen Golf GTI sets the standard for all other hot hatches and is probably more usable than any of them. Paul Murrell tries the latest version to see if it’s still leader of the pack.
Audi claims it created the premium compact segment. But does the Audi badge have sufficient clout to defeat the new Mercedes-Benz A-Class and BMW 1 Series?
The new Lexus IS, old engines apart, is a clear improvement over the old model and there is no doubt it will attract a younger demographic to the brand. But it still just fails to stir the soul the way some of its competitors do. Maybe the new engines, when they finally arrive, will fix that.
Hands up if you remember the Nissan Pulsar? Born in 1978 and sold all around the world (various generations were even built in Australia) until it disappeared in 2007, replaced by the Nissan Tiida, the Nissan Pulsar became an icon. And now it’s back. And at exactly the same price it listed for back in 1996 – $19,990 (+ORC). Clever.
The Fiat 500 has never really been a serious choice for Australian motorists, but with a price cut and cute looks that might be about to change. It also makes a strong case for itself against the other “retro” contenders such as the VW Beetle and Mini, which are bought more for image than any compelling practical reasons.
Despite the high ride height, the Mini Paceman lacks AWD. And while the extra length pays dividends in rear seat space, there’s still only room for two back there and intending occupants have to find their way in and out using the front doors. That said, the Paceman looks hot. And perhaps that’s the only justification it needs.
At $16,000 driveway for the base model, the Fiat Punto is well worth a look on price and equipment alone. It’s a decent-looking car and the fit and finish is impressive, as are the standard five doors, nice manual gearbox and roomy, airy interior.
With the exception of the rear-drive BR-Z, Subaru has made a name for itself as an all-wheel drive SUV specialist. And this fourth-generation Subaru Forester XT builds on the success of its predecessor by being bigger and roomier, better on fuel and with a much more premium look.
The new Jeep Grand Cherokee is an impressive package and the inclusion of a 4×2 version will make it even more appealing to a wider audience. But if your heart is set on a Range Rover, you probably won’t be swayed. On the other hand, if your budget is not bottomless, there will be a Grand Cherokee that suits.
If you’re in the market for a highly sensible new car with all the attributes of a small car but the space and practicality of a mid-size car, the Nissan Almera almost stands alone. You’ll miss out on a few of life’s little luxuries, but you shouldn’t get too many complaints from the back seat.