Toyota shows new Prius range with weird commercial (+video)

September 20th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

The Prius family of vehicles has grown recently and what was once a single model now includes a plug-in hybrid model and the Prius V minivan. The new models are set to go on sale in the States from next month and Toyota has revealed a new ad campaign to sell the range. The only problem is that the first TV commercial is really bizzare.

Aptly named “People Person” this new campaign was created by ‘hit and miss’ advertising agency, Saatchi & Saatchi

The ad follows a bunch of people who are linked together to from a gigantic but correctly proportioned man. This people-man goes about his regular day like brushing his teeth and reading the newspaper. Then the giant leaves the house and uncovers four Prius models, including the regular Prius, the Prius Plug-in Hybrid, the Prius V and the upcoming compact Prius (still in concept form), all parked on his driveway. Then the people who make up this giant man begin to disengage from their formation and drive off in the cars. Continue reading “Toyota shows new Prius range with weird commercial (+video)” »

Toyota NZ reveals 2012 Camry range

August 29th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Toyota has revealed the all-new seventh generation Camry.  The New Zealand Camry range will feature three models including two new unique model variants named Atara.

The new Toyota Camry debuts a refreshed design with more interior space, retuned driving dynamics and a quieter ride.  Every exterior body panel on Camry is new.

A new 2.5 litre four-cylinder petrol engine delivers a 10 per cent increase in power and better fuel economy than the current model’s 2.4 litre petrol engine. The 2012 Camry will now be fitted with a six speed automatic transmission – replacing the current generation’s five-speed gearbox.

Toyota New Zealand General Manager of Sales and Operations, Steve Prangnell said “The new Camry, Atara and a new Camry Hybrid will arrive together in New Zealand dealerships in March 2012.” Continue reading “Toyota NZ reveals 2012 Camry range” »

BMW reveals all-new 2012 1-Series range

June 7th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

With leaked images of BMW’s brand new 1-Series hatch circulating online since Friday the Bavarian carmaker has made the call to release a full set of photos and official details.

BMW’s compact car is now larger and sports fresher looks while also introducing a new range of engines. The all-new 2012 1 Series is expected to debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show later this year with the code-name F20. It will sit on the same platform that underpins the upcoming new 3 Series and will be larger than its predecessor in every dimension except height. The first variant on show will be the volume-selling five-door hatchback but the range will also include a three-door hatch, coupe, cabriolet and possibly a longer Gran Turismo version.

The new sheetmetal has extensively revised styling with more prominent creases and a dramatic front-end that includes an even larger kidney grille and frowning headlights that push back into the wheel guards.

Inside, higher-grade materials are used and there’s apparently more attention to detail. A larger centre console houses fresh switchgear and there are new steering wheel designs. The latest version of BMW’s iDrive system is an optional extra. Continue reading “BMW reveals all-new 2012 1-Series range” »

Ford NZ confirms 2011 Territory pricing and range

May 13th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Ford New Zealand has confirmed pricing and model range for its new 2011 Territory. Prices start from $49,990 for the rear-driving petrol TX model and finish at $69,990 for the top-spec Titanium all-wheel-drive diesel model.

A broad seven model range will cater to different requirements and budgets. The big choice for Kiwi buyers is if they want diesel or petrol powering their Territory. The Diesel variants come at a premium and if all-wheel-drive is desired it has to be a diesel model with both petrol offerings being RWD only.

The all-singing Titanium model replaces the Ghia range-topper from the previous line-up and comes packing fruit like 18-inch alloys, full leather trim, LED lights, unique front bumper, satellite navigation and a rear DVD player for the kids. Continue reading “Ford NZ confirms 2011 Territory pricing and range” »

Isuzu NZ drops prices on D-Max ute range

January 19th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

Christmas has come just a couple of weeks late for Kiwi ute buyers with the announcement that Isuzu NZ is reducing prices on its D-Max range. From Jan 17th prices have been dropped on every model in the range.

“With support from the factory we have been able to reduce the landed cost in New Zealand, and we are passing that straight on to Kiwi owners,” said the General Manager of Isuzu, Greg MacDonald.

It means that, for example the LS 4WD model which previously sold at $54,990 now costs just $52,490 including GST.”

“It’s rare to see vehicle costs coming down these days and, as a wholly New Zealand-owned and operated network, we are very happy to be able to support Kiwi buyers this way,” said Mr MacDonald.

Click here to read a Car and SUV review of the Isuzu D-Max LS ute.

Renault to expand line-up in NZ and boost Koleos range

November 2nd, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Renault is preparing to expand its range of models on the New Zealand market early in 2011 with the launch of the new Fluence sedan, Megane hatch, Megane Coupe Cabriolet, Megane 250RS Cup and Trophee models and the Koleos SUV.

The enlarged range of Renault’s Koleos should cater for a wide variety of buyers in the compact SUV market.

When the high riding five door arrives here early next year it will be available in 3 models, including two and four wheel drive options.

“Our customers enjoy the versatility of a compact SUV with its command driving position,” said Mark Patterson, the General Manager of Renault Cars New Zealand. “But they don’t always require the off road capabilities that come with an AWD. So to cater for this we will also make available a 2WD option.”

The still comprehensively equipped 2WD Koleos will be competitively priced with a 2.5 litre four cylinder petrol engine and Continuously Variable Transmission.

There will be two four wheel drive models available. The same petrol motor as in the 2WD is mated to a 4WD CVT gearbox, while a two litre diesel will come with a six speed automatic transmission.

“Renault has the compact SUV market covered with this range,” said Mr Patterson. “Whether the preference is diesel or petrol both 4WDs offer the ability to take their occupants to any kind of recreational destination in New Zealand.”

All three models come standard with a safety package that includes six air bags, ESP and ABS brakes.

Standard features across the range include air conditioning, a four speaker sound system, Bluetooth connectivity, cruise control, 7 function trip computer, electric mirrors and windows, 17 inch alloy wheels and a rear spoiler.

The 2WD model also has the option of integrated satellite navigation and front fog lights.

Both 4WD models add hill descent and start assist control, dual climate control air conditioning, integrated satellite navigation, automatic park control, a central console, 6 speaker sound system, blinds on the rear side door windows, roof rails, front fog lights, automatic wipers and headlights, heated door mirrors, rear parking aid and iPod USB connectivity.

Optional extras include Xenon headlights, 18 inch alloy wheels and a sunroof.

Click here to read a Car and SUV review of the Renault Koleos.

2012 Ford Ranger line up could include a SUV variant

October 26th, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Ford introduced its all-new 2012 Ranger at the recent Australian Motor Show in Sydney (read news) and while it’s already been well received Ford isn’t stopping there. According to recent reports online, Ford has plans to expand the Ranger Lineup to include an SUV variant. This new SUV isn’t expected till late 2012 at the very earliest.

Being developed in collaboration with Mazda (the Mazda BT50 is a redesigned Ford Ranger), the Japanese manufacturer could be considering a new SUV based on the BT50.

The new SUV is expected to share the same powertrains found on the 2012 Ranger. Ford introduced three new engines on its compact pickup truck: a 2.2-litre Ford Duratorq TDCi I4 diesel engine with peak torque output of 375 Nm and power output of 110 kW, a 3.2-litre Ford Duratorq TDCi I5 diesel engine with a powerful 470 Nm of torque and 147 kW of power; and a 2.5-litre Ford Duratec I4 petrol engine with more power at 122 kW.

The new Ford Ranger has been big news here in NZ, so check back as we bring you more info on a possible SUV variant.

Holden reveals new Commodore VE Series II range

September 1st, 2010 by Darren Cottingham

Holden Australia has just revealed its new Commodore VE Series II vehicle range which comes with various improvements, including an added E85 bio-fuel capability. It’s the first major update to the fourth-generation VE Commodore since its launch back in 2006.

The VE Series II introduces a new flex-fuel capability on its 3.0-litre V6 engine and  6.0-litre V8 mill which allows both to run on E85 bio-ethanol. Aside from the flex-fuel capability the mechanical package remains mostly unchanged. However, the Series II promises to offer improved fuel economy and reduced CO2 emissions across the range.

There are a range of interior and exterior styling updates and a new 6.5-inch full colour touch-screen infotainment system called Holden-iQ. This new control system will be standard in all Commodore models (except Ute) and will include Bluetooth connectivity.

In terms of exterior design, it’s a subtle facelift with all models featuring various new front fascias, grilles and headlamps. There’s also an integrated aerodynamic lip and new wheel options.

Holden Chairman and Managing Director Mike Devereux said that the Series II VE Commodore reflects Holden’s focus on ongoing improvements for the top-selling model.

“Our customers have been telling us they want to see our models refreshed with greater functionality from Omega to Caprice,” Devereux said. “We have listened and responded in a way that continues to position Commodore as the smart choice for Australian motorists.”

Holden will reveal full pricing and availability for the 2011 VE Series Holden Commodore on September 10, when the model officially launches.

For more information on the Commodore Series II range, check out the detailed official press release below, and more images in the gallery. Continue reading “Holden reveals new Commodore VE Series II range” »