Nissan Juke Ti-S 2013 Review

February 11th, 2014 by Darren Cottingham

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We drove a Juke Ti back in April 2012 and our main complaint was that it was slow, and that’s not surprising seeing as the standard Juke has a piffling 86kW at 6000rpm. The gods of grunt have waved their hands over the Juke Ti-S, though, endowing its 1.6-litre 4-cylinder petrol engine with a turbocharger which lifts power to 140kW, and four-wheel drive to make sure it gets it all to the ground.

IMG_2742It’s like the difference between firing an air rifle and a bazooka.  Gone is the need to try to force the pedal through the firewall to get any kind of acceleration because torque is also substantially increased from 158Nm at 400rpm to 250Nm in a nice flat band from 2000-5000rpm. The Juke Ti-S seems like it gets to 100kph in around 8 seconds which is pretty respectable for this type of car; the Ti languishes like a tortoise, taking around 12 seconds to get to 100kph. Continue reading “Nissan Juke Ti-S 2013 Review” »

Hyundai Veloster Turbo Elite 2012 Review

November 21st, 2012 by Darren Cottingham

We took a look at the naturally aspirated Veloster Elite a few months ago. If you read the article you’ll see that I said that the turbo version will be awesome. Let’s find out whether it is.

My history is with four-wheel drive rally cars of the 90s. I liked the stiff suspension, the four-cylinder turbo sound and the agile feeling that you get when you don’t have a Continue reading “Hyundai Veloster Turbo Elite 2012 Review” »

MG6 Turbo GT TSE Review

November 5th, 2012 by Darren Cottingham

Everyone I told I was driving an MG assumed that I was writing for our sister title, NZ Classic Car and that I would be donning a flat cap and one of those jackets with elbow patches. They warned me that if it wasn’t leaking that meant it had run out. However, MG has been resurrected.

We have a mixture of fond and, well, less-than-fond memories with MGs, from the Continue reading “MG6 Turbo GT TSE Review” »

Mazda3 MPS 2012 Review

April 10th, 2012 by Darren Cottingham

It’s interesting driving the cars that you know are going to be coveted by the future generation of performance-hungry young drivers. Because of our fairly cheap insurance in New Zealand, people under 25 can afford to insure cars that would be uninsurable in many other countries. As we have a sister title, NZ Performance Car, I’m acutely aware of the type of cars that will be making their way to the next generation once they’re a few years old.

Mazda’s MPS is one of them. OK, it’s front-wheel drive, which makes it a bit annoying for drift kings and track day heroes, but it’s a hot hatch with enough Continue reading “Mazda3 MPS 2012 Review” »

2012 BMW 528i to receive turbo four-cylinder motor

October 11th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

BMW’s current F10 5-Series model range has been a success for the German car maker. It’s received awards in various countries, including NZ and is known as one of the best luxury sedans on the market. Now in order to push it’s economy credentials further, BMW will drop two cylinders of the engine of its entry-model 528i.

For the 2012 model year the petrol-powered 528i will use BMW’s turbocharged N20 four-cylinder unit which will replace the current six-cylinder mill. Power will decrease from 190kW to 180Kw with the new engine but peak torque will be boosted from 310Nm to a healthy 350Nm.

The four-cylinder engine is new for the 5-Series but not new for BMW, it’s already seen duty in the X1 range and, more recently, the Z4 sDrive28i. It’s a highly capable unit and will take the 528i from standing to 100 km/h in just 6.3 seconds – down from 6.7 seconds on the current model. Continue reading “2012 BMW 528i to receive turbo four-cylinder motor” »

Next Honda Civic Type R may be turbocharged

October 6th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

The Civic Type-R has a loyal fan following. mostly by admirers of it’s naturally aspirated VTEC engine. So it will be with mixed feelings that fans receive reports that the next-generation of the hottest Civic will use a turbocharged engine for the first time ever.

While only a rumour at this stage, the unconfirmed reports claim that the 2013 Civic Type-R currently in development will use a Mugen-produced, 156kW 2.0-litre turbo four-cylinder engine. That’s only a small increase over the 148kW of power in the current model Type-R (pictured). The Honda fan boys who are left wondering why, can thank the strict European emissions regulations for the shift to forced induction. To salt the wounds the next Type-R will likely receive a stop-start system to reduce fuel consumption even further.

The good news is that the next-gen Type-R will come packing some neat tricks like a six-speed manual box with short-throw shifter, track-ready suspension set-up and all manner of aerodynamic aids. Expect 0-100 km/h times in the low six second bracket and a top speed of around 240 km/h. Continue reading “Next Honda Civic Type R may be turbocharged” »

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?” »

New 2012 Suzuki Swift Sport on track for next year

July 18th, 2011 by Darren Cottingham

The new-model Swift in its regular form has been on sale in NZ for a few months now and is proving popular with Suzuki on track to launch its new 2012 Swift Sport early next year.

While official details haven’t been released, there have been leaks revealing that the new model will be a three-door hatch with styling cues borrowed from the S-Concept (pictured).

Power is expected to come from a naturally aspirated 1.6-litre four-cylinder petrol engine producing around 100 kW. The standard transmission will be a six-speed manual box but if 100kW is too much power for you to shift through – an automatic transmission will be an available option.

Development and testing of the car is currently taking place at the Nurburgring race track in Germany, mostly centering on a new aerodynamics package, stiffened suspension and uprated Brembo brakes. Continue reading “New 2012 Suzuki Swift Sport on track for next year” »

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