2012 Holden Commodore updated with new features and colours

September 12th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Holden’s engineering team is busy developing the next-generation Commodore dubbed VF, but with this new model still two to three years away, there’s plenty of time for more tweaking of the current VE model.

For the 2012 model year, the Commodore will receive two new colours, modest exterior and interior enhancements, plus the inclsion of the track-inspired FE3 sports suspension on Redline variants.

Selected models receive chrome accents to highlight the Series II front fascia, while Omega is fitted with new 16-inch seven-spoke alloy wheels. A new lip spoiler enhances the styling of the luxury focused Calais V. The SS V-Series Redline Edition gets new forged and polished 19-inch alloy wheels plus painted rear brake calipers.

In the cabin, there’s silver stitching on the optional Onyx and Razor leather interior trim while the Redhot trim also receives some treatment. The iQ multimedia system has been updated to be compatible with the latest smartphones.

Holden’s colour and trim team has introduced two new exterior colors named Perfect Blue and Chlorophyll. The new blue hue pays homage to Australian motorsport icon Peter Brock and his famous Formula Blue HDT Group A VK SS Commodore that was launched back in 1985. Continue reading “2012 Holden Commodore updated with new features and colours” »

Fiat reworks unpopular Punto for 2012

September 6th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Fiat’s super cute 500 is continuing to be a sales superstar in various global markets which has left its Punto sibling feeling like a bit of an ugly duckling. But Fiat is determined to keep the Punto looking sharp and has done some tweaking for the 2012 model.

The current Punto was first released back in 2005 as the Grand Punto, but it began to look its age. To combat this Fiat launched the reworked Punto Evo in 2009 but now that update isn’t selling anymore so its time for another update.

On the 2012 Punto, the black plastic mouldings have been dropped and the chrome trim on the nose. The interior has also seen some work and there’s two new engines on offer in global markets. Fiat’s popular 900cc two-cylinder unit can be  had and another 1.3-llitre MultiJet diesel has also joined the range. Continue reading “Fiat reworks unpopular Punto for 2012” »

Kia Hamsters return to promote facelifted Soul (+video)

August 29th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Kia has brought back its body bopping hamsters to push its cosmetically refreshed and mechanically upgraded 2012 Kia Soul which goes on sale in the States this month.

This time around the hip hop inspired hamsters find themselves in a dark, futuristic videogame world where the rodents turn the battle between alien robots and humanoids into a dancing frenzy. The soundtrack is provided by electro-pop group LMFAO’s hit, “Party Rock Anthem”.

“The success and popularity of the Soul continues to grow and attract new customers to the Kia brand, and with music playing an important role in our marketing efforts it is the perfect time for the hamsters to return for a third installment featuring the infectious sounds of LMFAO’s ‘Party Rock Anthem’ to highlight the 2012 Soul’s new attributes,” said Michael Sprague, vice president, marketing & communications, KMA. Continue reading “Kia Hamsters return to promote facelifted Soul (+video)” »

Ferrari working on range of facelifted and new models

August 10th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

If recent rumours are to be believed Ferrari has a busy few years coming up with a whole host of new models planned.

Reports are circulating that Ferrari will present its new 458 Spider at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show in September. The 458 Spider will take the position of the discontinued 430 Spider in Ferrari’s range and will likely make use of a retractable hard-top.

Apparently a more powerful version of the 458 will appear in 2013, but in keeping with the lightweight model nameplates from the 360 Challenge Stradale to the 430 Scuderia, expect the new model to carry its own moniker. The Ferrari California is scheduled for a facelift in 2013, and the 458 Italia may also get a refresh in 2014, but considering the car just went on sale last year, that timeframe could prove incorrect. Continue reading “Ferrari working on range of facelifted and new models” »

Renault Twingo gets facelift for 2012

July 29th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Renault has just dropped the first image of its new 2012 Twingo micro car before it officially debuts at the upcoming Frankfurt Motor Show.

There is more than a hint of Nissan in the new Twingo with styling cues share with the Juke and it rolls on the same platform as the previous-generation Micra.

The new model features refreshed front a rear ends with an enlarged Renault badge on the front fascia and a rounder, wider grill. This limited refresh will need to carry the baby Renault for a few years but its nothing new for the model line. The first generation Twingo was in production for a staggering fifteen years from 1992 to 2007 when the second-gen model was initially introduced. Continue reading “Renault Twingo gets facelift for 2012” »

Hyundai i45 receives first facelift – coming to NZ?

July 22nd, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Although it feels like Hyundai’s i45 mid-size sedan has only just reached NZ roads, it has just received its first facelift in Korea.

The updates are cosmetically mild but the big news is a revised powertrain line-up.

The facelift includes a reworked front grille with slightly less chrome, new LED taillights, reshaped mirror caps and a fresh choice of alloy wheels including a set of 18-inch multispoke rims. In the cabin the i45 receives updated trim options and a chilled glove box.

Under the bonnet, Hyundai has dropped the 2.4-litre petrol engine and replaced it with the more powerful and exciting 202kW turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder. in base model form the 122kW 2.0-litre naturally aspirated engine remains. Continue reading “Hyundai i45 receives first facelift – coming to NZ?” »

Aston Martin to debut updated DBS in 2012

July 15th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Aston Martin’s DBS has been on the scene for five years now and the DB9 on which its based has been on sale for eight years. Both models are in their twilight years, but its been revealed that they’ll have to keep going a few more years yet. The replacement is expected to be all new, but won’t be available until 2015. Till then Aston Martin is planning a comprehensive facelift for the DB9 family.

The high-end DBS will be the first model to receive the changes before the updates are used on the rest of the model line. Expect to see some design cues borrowed off the One-77 supercar, this will show the influence of new design boss Marek Reichman.

The new touches will see a fully updated front fascia which drops the company’s trademark shape in favor of a new single grille/air dam. There will also be re-shaped bonnet vents and sharper lines all around. Continue reading “Aston Martin to debut updated DBS in 2012” »

Toyota reveals facelifted 2012 Hilux ute

July 14th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Toyota has officially unveiled its facelifted 2012 Hilux ute. The 2012 Hilux has a number of styling updates and safety upgrades across the range.

Cosmetic changes include a completely new front end on the 2012 Hilux, this means new guards, headlights, bumper, bonnet and three-bar grille. At the rear, there’s new tailights and a replaced rear bumper. There’s also new mirrors and alloy wheel designs.

Inside, changes are subtle and centre around new seat and door trims, there’s also an available 6.1-inch touchscreen multimedia system. Toyota is also claiming that the 2012 Hilux will offer “greater colour consistency throughout the interior.”

Anti-lock braking has now been adopted across the Hilux range as a standard feature, previously it was only available as an option for models except the top-spec SR5. Continue reading “Toyota reveals facelifted 2012 Hilux ute” »