Tag Archive | "2013"

Thirteen For 13


Are you superstitious? Would you be entirely happy with the number 13 on your car? Well, unless you can find a way around it – as suggested by Motor Blogger last year – you are just going to have to lump it. Our unwavering government have no intention of ditching this year’s series just to please the likes of you.

Never mind. At least there is going to be a fantastic selection of new cars that you could attach to the back of your new number plate. Honda, for example, are planning a new SUV in line with current trends that will be pitched into the gap between the Civic and the CRV. An interesting point is that it may feature Honda’s next-generation hybrid technology.

If you’re feeling flush with cash you could push the boat out and treat yourself to Jaguar’s forthcoming F Type. This may well be the most anticipated car of the year; full of lovely supercharged goodness. Too tame for your wallet? Fair enough. How about the long-awaited replacement for the Enzo, the F70. Or will it be the F150? We’ll see what Ferrari decide although Ford America won’t be too happy as that’s the designation for their new pick-up!

Back in the real world Fiat are offering the 500L. We’ve mentioned this before. Basically it’s a 500 on steroids. Presumably this is designed to rival the giant Mini and word has it that this could be one of the year’s best sellers. As indeed could the 500 Coupé , a cheeky 2+2 version of the perennial favourite. Meanwhile over the border in France, Citroen’s successful DS3 is taking it’s top off, or at least rolling it up – a feature that really suits this star car.

For hot hatch fans Ford will be selling the long awaited Fiesta ST, sporting at least 180bhp. If a suitable family car is more to your requirements then there’s a new package with the latest Kia Carens SUV (pictured) – the words on the grapevine are ‘surprise’ and ‘delight’. Not content to settle for one new car, the same company will present their first hot hatch in the UK. The Cee’d GT. Boasting a muscular 200bhp it looks like a rival for the ST.

Winner of this year’s daft name award is the mighty Maserati Kubang. Effectively a Ferrari powered Jeep in an Italian designer frock it’s a new departure for a company that is slowly resurrecting its image. The trouble is – is it a car too far for a company noted for beautiful design? The official Kubang website is showing a wonderful old and evocative short film called ‘A story that will overcome time’. Worth a look.

Mazda’s 6 is a good and popular choice, especially if you are not badge conscious but now they’ve produced a coupé version that’s a real looker. Let’s hope it gives a boost to this underrated manufacturer. If you do like a badge then Mercedes are refreshing the E-Class. Not earth-shattering in itself but the company are saying it will be packed with cutting edge technology under the banner ‘intelligent drive’.

In fact, there will be something like sixty new or updated cars being sold or announced in the coming year, but in this brief article there is only one car that can finish of the list. Will we finally be able to get our hands on the Alfa Romeo 4C? Live in hope.

So there you have it – thirteen cars for 2013. So don’t worry your heads about the reputation of the number 13. You know what they say – lucky for some!

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New Cars To Expect In 2013


Every year at about this time it can be guaranteed that certain things will happen. Television companies will interview Noddy Holder and show diabolical ‘Christmas Specials’ recorded last August or even last century. Look carefully and you can see the sweat on Santa’s brow. The other thing that is sure to happen is that you will start considering which new car to buy in 2013.

Once upon a time the motorists of Britain would troop off annually to a strange and windblown area of London called Earls Court – where their ears would be assailed by the mysterious twang of Australian accents – to look at new offerings from motor manufacturers and that would be it for the year. Now, car shows proliferate world-wide and the choice available to us has never been greater. This is a good thing.

In the year forthcoming we can expect to see, the economy notwithstanding, a range of exciting new vehicles. Some are concepts that may make it into production but others will be in the showrooms soon.

Let’s start with the good old Renault Clio, with us for over twenty years. This is a car that the French company re-invent from time to time. This fourth generation model is a real looker – it’s got a wider stance, a lower ride height and a face that comes straight from the glorious DeZir concept It will only be available as a five door, including the subsequent Renaultsport model.

As you might expect it’s packed with tech thanks to the integrated system known as R-Link, a big touchy-feely screen that’s internet-able, with satellite navigator, Bluetooth, voice commands and so on. It will even give eco-driving advice, presumably in a pious and holier-than-thou tone of voice. As ever there’s a selection of engines including a new three cylinder and a diesel capable of 88mpg, so they say.

In the battle of the superminis, Mitsubishi are wading in with the Mirage. It’s got everything you’d expect at the price point and is designed to compete against the likes of the Skoda Fabia and Hyundai i20. The only snag is that it’s looks are a little bland – some competitors may be more appealing for this cosmetic reason alone.

VW will feature the GTI version of their 7th generation Golf and Ford their much anticipated ST version of the popular Fiesta. There’s the attractive and sporty looking Kia Pro Cee’d, new Leon’s and Toledo’s from SEAT and, later in the year, a new Mondeo (pictured). This is a really nice looking car that’s bigger than the present model yet – surprise, surprise – it will be offered with Ford’s  acclaimed 1.0L three cylinder EcoBoost engine offering a punchy 125bhp. It will be interesting to see if that little postage sized unit can lug this huge car around without gasping for breath at every incline.

At a very rough count there will be some 44 new or revamped cars to choose from in 2013 (as well as all the existing models) but this includes some previous concept cars that may make it into production, but aren‘t confirmed. For some of them, the Skoda Mission L is an example; this should be a reality though. So reach for the plastic. 2013 is going to be another bumper year for car buyers. If a new car is out of the question, the used car market is looking like good value just now. You’re spoiled for choice.

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New Range Rover For 2013


They just keep on coming, don’t they? Land Rovers that is. First we get the highly regarded Evoque. Then we learn of a trendy replacement for that faithful old retainer, the Defender; and now the first news of the replacement for the ageing Range Rover is starting to appear.

The much loved Rangey has been around now for over forty years. First launched in 1970 it is now on its third iteration and no amount of facelifts, upgrades and no less than four new engines can disguise the fact that model L322, first introduced in 2002, has reached the end of the road.

The good news is that model L405 will be with us next year and it is going to be something special. Land Rover are a bit cagey about the final looks but the picture above gives you some idea. Thinking about a grown-up Evoque is probably the way to go as the new vehicle will have some of that modern aero-dynamic styling whilst retaining the high driving position. It will still be all Range Rover though, not an Evoque clone.

There is no question that the present car is a big, thirsty beast, but LR have the solution. The new Range Rover will be built around a pressed aluminium monocoque which will help to the car to shed a slimming 250 kilos which should improve performance and economy.

A factory somewhere in the Midlands and suitably improved, will make the car and if the Evoque has really done wonders for the company’s fortunes then this new Rangey is the metaphoric icing on the cake.

America is seen as the prime market and LR expect to sell around twice as many there as they would in the UK. It won’t come cheap though. Expect the starting price to be around seventy thousand pounds rising to over the £100K mark for the range-topper.

This still isn’t a tree-hugging car. As with all manufacturers, Land Rover have made great strides in reducing noxious output and improving mpg but don’t expect it to be that frugal. For the eco-conscious – as is the trend – there is expected to be a hybrid version which it is hoped will cut emissions to 150g/km. Impressive in a car this size.

It’s a big step for the company as the present Rangey has a huge and dedicated following. Additionally, there has been an increase in the level of competition with the big X-Series Beemers, the Porsche Cayenne and new SUV’s from both Bentley and surprisingly, Lamborghini, so it needs to be good. Let’s see if the legend continues.

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