Peugeot reveals new 208 supermini

November 3rd, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

With high fuel prices and congested main centres the small hatch B-segment market has become a key war zone for car makers. It’s an area Peugeot has long been strong in and it’s latest weapon in the fight is the new 208 which has just been revealed and will replace the current 207 series.

This latest Pug will go up against the Ford Fiesta, Toyota Yaris and VW Polo. While the overall dimensions have shrunken Peugeot claims that the interior volume has increased.

In terms of styling the 208 adopts Peugeot’s latest design language, the main highlights include a “floating” grille, raked back headlights and “boomerang” style tail lamps. The 208′s profile is also more sculptured, and overall, the new model looks sufficiently more advanced than the 207 it replaces.

The 208 will be built in two body styles when it launches next year, a three- and five-door. The three-door model is distinguished by pronounced side curve that extends all the way back to the rear lights, a slightly more sloped roofline, thicker C-pillar and a smaller glasshouse. The three-door 208 will tip the scales at just 975kg, a full 170kg lighter than its predecessor. Continue reading “Peugeot reveals new 208 supermini” »

Mini Roadster officially revealed

October 31st, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Mini is continuing to expand its model family. The latest addition to the range is the Mini Roadster, this convertible variant is the sixth model in the brand’s current line-up and the first open-top two-seater in its history.

The two-seater features a manually-opening soft-top roof and plenty of unique packaging to appeal to Mini fans. As you’d expect it offers the high-handling abilities expected of a Mini and broad scope for individualisation.

The three-box body structure has a stepped rear end and a sweeping roadster look thanks to heavily raked A-pillars and a waistline rising up slightly along the length of the body towards the flat rear end. The Roadster sits 20 millimetres lower than the standard Mini Convertible.

The Roadster pushing its handling credentials with a bespoke chassis set-up, low centre of gravity, torsionally rigid body and optimised aerodynamic properties. Electronic tech includes Electric Power Steering and DSC (Dynamic Stability Control) as standard, DTC (Dynamic Traction Control) with EDLC (Electronic Differential Lock Control) optional. There’s also roll-over bars in polished stainless steel and an active rear spoiler that extends automatically at 80 km/h. Continue reading “Mini Roadster officially revealed” »

GM announces new Ecotec small engine development

October 14th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

General Motors has announced plans to completely overhaul it’s smallest engine range. This will involve replacing three engine families with a new modular Ecotec design.

Production of the more economical engines will begin around 2015 and it’s expected that by 2020 GM will be producing around two million of these motors per year.

The engines will be developed for global applications but GM hasn’t revealed what models are most likely to receive them. The displacements will range from 1.0-litres through to 1.5-litres in three- and four-cylinder formats. They will feature direct injection, a turbocharger and alternative fuel compatibility. There’s no word on specifications, but GM says the engines will deliver increased fuel efficiency and reduced CO2 emissions. Continue reading “GM announces new Ecotec small engine development” »

2012 Jeep Cherokee arrives with new diesel engine

October 7th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

The new 2012 Jeep Cherokee goes on sale in New Zealand this month with a new diesel engine option and a range of upgrades.

The 2012 Jeep Cherokee is available in NZ in a single specification level – the high grade Limited. It goes on sale with a choice of diesel or petrol engine variants.

As well as the familiar 3.7-litre V6 petrol engine which produces 151 kW @ 5,200 rpm and 314 Nm of torque @ 4,000 rpm, the Cherokee now offers the new 2.8 DOHC 16-valve 4-cylinder Common-Rail Diesel (CRD) engine which produces 147kW at 3600 rpm and 460 Nm of torque at 1600 rpm.

The new diesel engine offers improved performance and economy with 13% more power over the previous model yet uses 12% less fuel. Jeep’s quoted combined fuel consumption figures for the Cherokee diesel are 7.9 L/100km and 206g/km CO2.

Jeep continues to push its 4×4 heritage in the Cherokee by offering the Jeep Trail Rated four-wheel-drive system –Selec-Trac II.

Selec-Trac II is a shift-on-the-fly four-wheel-drive system. Select-Trac II operates in 2WD, 4WD Auto, 4WD Low and Neutral. To back it up the Cherokee features independent front suspension with rack-and pinion steering and a five-link rear suspension set-up. Continue reading “2012 Jeep Cherokee arrives with new diesel engine” »

2013 Ford Escape to receive four-cylinder engines only

October 7th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

The upcoming 2013 Ford Escape is set for its official reveal at next month’s Los Angeles Auto Show, but details on engine options have already leaked out. According to unconfirmed reports the next Escape will be fitted with three four-cylinder engine options for global markets and two of those engines will use turbocharging.

The base model Escape will be fitted with the 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine already working in the current model Escape but its the two new EcoBoost motors that will be of more interest. The turbocharged 1.6-litre unit is already making waves in Europe and will motivate the mid-spec Escape. This fuel-efficient mill outputs around 135kW of power. Continue reading “2013 Ford Escape to receive four-cylinder engines only” »

New 2012 Holden Colorado revealed in production Chevrolet form

October 6th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

General Motors has revealed the production version of its 2012 Chevrolet Colorado which will be rebadged as the Holden Colorado when it arrives in NZ next year.

The new Colorado was unveiled in Thailand where it will enter the local market shortly. Holden hasn’t officially announced a schedule for its entry into the Australian and NZ markets.

According to GM, the Colorado is the end result of a vehicle program that began five years ago and cost $2 billion USD. It will be offered globally with a total of 26 variants, two diesel engines, two- and four-wheel-drive layouts, different ride heights, wide and narrow body styles and various cab options.

Engine options will include two Duramax four-cylinder diesel engines. One will be a 2.5 litre motor and the other a larger 2.8 litre unit. The 2.5 litre mill produces 110kW and 350Nm of torque, the 2.8 litre turbodiesel pumps out 132kW and 470Nm of torque when mated to the six-speed auto box. In five-speed manual form the engine is tuned to output 440Nm of torque. For now there is no word on any petrol-powered variants. Continue reading “New 2012 Holden Colorado revealed in production Chevrolet form” »

Ford drops details and photos of Falcon FG MkII

September 16th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Ford has revealed the first photos and details of its upcoming FG Falcon MkII range this week ahead of it reaching NZ showrooms late this year.

The updated Falcon brings new technologies, an enhanced safety package, new exterior design appointments  and the first global application of EcoBoost engine technology in a rear-wheel drive vehicle. It also heralds in the debut of Ford’s global 2.0-litre four-cylinder Ecoboost petrol engine which will be offered in the FG Falcon from next year.

The MkII Falcon will showcase some of Ford’s latest tech like a new 8.0-inch colour touch screen and integrated audio, phone and navigation functions and a more comprehensive occupant protection package.

“The improvements made to the award-winning Falcon range with the introduction of FG Falcon MkII have made a great car even better,” Ford New Zealand Marketing Manager, Chris Masterson said. “FG Falcon MkII builds on the success of the FG Falcon program, as well as the recently released new Territory range, by offering New Zealanders more equipment and the latest technology innovations, while continuing to deliver outstanding performance, fuel efficiency, refinement and safety.” Continue reading “Ford drops details and photos of Falcon FG MkII” »

2012 BMW 1-Series arriving in NZ next month – from $46,600

September 1st, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

The all new 2012 BMW 1 Series is scheduled to go on sale in New Zealand on October 28. The second-generation 1-Series comes offering more fuel efficient engines, new features and a segment-first eight-speed automatic transmission as standard.

The price of the 116i manual, featuring an entirely new 1.6 litre four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine, will start from $46,600 drive-away. The new base-model boasts the same power output of the previous entry model, the 118i, despite using 24 per cent less fuel (5.7 litres/100km).

The new-generation turbo engine accelerates the 116i from zero to 100 km/h in 8.5 seconds – compared to 9.4 seconds for the previous 118i.  Torque output is also up from 180Nm to 220Nm while carbon emissions are down from 174g/km to 132g/km.

Standard kit on the 116i include a 6.5-inch free-standing flatscreen colour display, handsfree Bluetooth functionality including USB, MP3 compatible CD player, cruise control with brake function, auto Start/Stop function, keyless engine start, 6-speaker stereo system, iDrive controller, favourite buttons and freshly designed 16-inch alloy wheels. Continue reading “2012 BMW 1-Series arriving in NZ next month – from $46,600” »

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