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  2. The ID 3 landed first, but SUV popularity should make the larger electric Volkswagen even more popular The Volkswagen Group is in the early stages of a barely comprehensible rollout of electric cars, with 75 models due by the end of the decade, ranging from high-spec sports cars such as the Porsche Taycan to reworked city cars like the e-Up. But none will be bigger than the ID 4. Full story: Volkswagen ID 4 officially revealed The ID 3 hatch had the honour of launching VW’s ID range, Skoda’s Enyaq iV will be the first SUV on the pivotal MEB platform and the Taycan is the performance flagshi
  3. MEB-based model arrives with a variety of powertrains offering up to 323 miles of range Volkswagen has unveiled the ID 4 and said the new SUV represents a “milestone” as the first model in its electric ID range that will be offered globally. The new machine will go on sale in Europe later this year and, unlike the recently launched ID 3 hatchback, it will also be built and sold in China and the US. Volkswagen is aiming to sell 1.5 million electric cars per year by 2025 and estimates the ID 4 will account for a third of that total. It is is based on the same MEB electric platform used for t
  4. Discover the UK's rich culture in the new MINI Countryman Our pick of Britain’s best creative staycation experiences to enjoy in MINI’s family-size SUV – including drive-in cinemas, outdoor art and living museums We’ve teamed up with the new MINI Countryman to help you scale up your next holiday adventure, picking some of our favourite inspirational ideas for destinations with a difference that help you supersize any UK staycation. With room for five, up to 1390 litres of versatile luggage space, and plenty of ways to customise your MINI to make it even more stylish or even more practical,
  5. Seat president Wayne Griffiths Performance brand CEO fills the gap left by Luca de Meo's departure in management shake-up The management shake-up at Seat has continued with the appointment of Cupra brand CEO Wayne Griffiths as the new president of the overall company, replacing Luca de Meo, who left for Renault in January. The Briton will assume his new role on 1 October, taking over from acting president Carsten Isensee, who will return to his previous role as executive vice-president for finance and IT. Griffiths remains Cupra CEO, as well as Seat’s sales and marketing executive vice-pr
  6. Pioneering firm says radical battery developments will allow sub-£20,000 electric car - but not until 2023 Tesla boss Elon Musk says the firm is working on a new generation of electric vehicle (EV) battery that will provide five times more energy and cost half as much as existing technology – but added that it's at least three years away from production. Musk said the new battery system, which uses larger cylindrical cells and will be produced in-house by Tesla, will enable the firm to launch an “affordable” $25,000 (£19,500) electric car, although he added "serious high-volume production" o
  7. Range-topping version of EV, due in 2021, will use three motors to do 0-60mph in less than 2.0sec Tesla has confirmed that the long-awaited Model S Plaid, the newest and most powerful version of its larger electric saloon, will go into production late next year. Announced at the company's Battery Day, the Plaid will use three motors to produce around 1100bhp. It will be capable of 0-60mph in less than 2.0sec and have a top speed of 200mph, which Tesla claims will make it the most powerful and quickest-accelerating production car in the world. A higher-capacity battery, likely using the impr
  8. Sportily styled crossover, revealed in 2018, will reach UK next year with mild-hybrid and hybrid powertrains Renault will expand its UK line-up with the introduction of the Arkana coupé-crossover, which will go on sale next year with a range of electrified petrol engines. The Arkana was launched at the 2018 Moscow motor show, with Renault design chief Laurens van den Acker saying it was intended to offer “a balance between the elegance of a saloon and the powerful stance of an SUV". While Renault initially said it had no plans to offer the machine in Western Europe, the continued rise in pop
  9. Sports saloon heads to Europe with upgraded interior, new colours and 3.3-litre V6 Kia has confirmed European specifications for its updated Stinger sports saloon, ahead of UK-specific details expected closer to launch. As with global markets, the European Stinger will only launch with the twin-turbocharged 3.3-litre petrol V6 powertrain used in the current Stinger GT S, paired exclusively to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Existing 2.0-litre turbo petrol and 2.2-litre diesel engines have been dropped, as Kia claims the majority of Stinger customers went for the more powerful varia
  10. This week our man takes in a pop-up Porsche launch, visits a motoring Mecca and adds another tome to his reading list Absorbing morning at Prodrive, the Banbury race engineering firm, where the car park was stuffed because everyone was working flat out on either last-minute fettling of Le Mans team Astons (we’ll know how they fared by the time you read this) or the brand-new Bahraini-backed BRX T1. The off-road racer is proceeding on a minute-by-minute schedule towards a shakedown starting next month, leading to the 4400-mile Dakar Rally in January. Team principal and Prodrive founder David
  11. Caura keeps track of tax, MOT and insurance expiry dates and enables users to pay tolls and fines A new smartphone app claimed to prevent drivers from ever forgetting to pay a parking fine, congestion charge or any other car-related fee is now available to download. The software, called Caura after the company that developed it, serves as a diary for vehicle owners in the UK, reminding them of important upcoming events, including road tax, MOT test and insurance expiry dates. Users of the Financial Conduct Authority-approved app can also pay fees for parking, toll roads and congestion charg
  12. Open-air theatre comes with command performance of Aston-tuned AMG V8 Another entertaining Aston Martin arrives, then.It was always the plan that this Vantage Roadster, a drop-roof version of Aston Martin’s most sporting car, would turn up at the same time as the DBX, its least sporting car. A spot of yin and yang, perhaps. Yes, see the SUV, but also don’t forget we still make sports cars. As if we would. The Vantage Roadster is all you’d expect a drop-topped Vantage to be, plus a little bit more, which we’ll come back to.Among the expected things are an all-electric soft hood that adds some
  13. Land Rover's most road-biased model gets updated for 2021 with its first plug-in variant Land Rover has boosted the appeal of the three-year-old Range Rover Velar with an overhaul of its technology, a renewed engine range and its first plug-in hybrid powertrain. The popular SUV hasn’t been changed externally, bar the addition of three new paint colours and wheel designs. Instead, the focus has been on the cabin, with Land Rover’s new Pivi and Pivi Pro infotainment systems added. The dual-screen layout is unchanged, but the graphics are better, while the software is completely overhauled to
  14. Munich's super saloon hasn't always hit the sweetspot, but this one could be superb from the outset I wonder whether the M3 will now finally break out of the E46’s shadow. The M3 of the millennium had heavenly handling and was endowed with an absolute humdinger of an atmospheric straight six, but the V8-engined E92 that followed was heavy and soft by comparison. The F80 then tried to remedy that but ended up being too tetchy in its dynamics. Exploiting it was hard and less enjoyable than it should have been, especially in the wet, and the then-new S55 twin-turbo straight six – with its gorg
  15. "As well as the saloon and coupé, BMW is developing an estate, a cabriolet and a four-door coup" Overhauled driveline and design for BMW's performance saloon and coupé, which is due March BMW has revealed its hotly anticipated new-generation M3 saloon and M4 coupé, with both of them featuring a radically redesigned front end and a heavily reworked mechanical package. Due on UK sale next March in more potent Competition form only, the new performance models offer up to 503bhp from a six-cylinder engine and, for the first time, an optional fully variable M xDrive four-wheel drive system. Pri
  16. Plug-in hybrid family crossover is a predicted best-seller. We try the facelifted model for the first time It’s funny, isn’t it? The Mini Countryman has been around since 2010 and we know that Minis aren’t mini any more, but when you park up somewhere in deepest Hesse, mid-west Germany, and someone perks up with an honest comment of “That’s part Mini and part tank”, you do wonder about just how far the brand is pushing the envelope.Or perhaps that comment merely reflects the somewhat aggressive looks of this facelifted Countryman, which wears its restyled bumpers, grille and de-chromed ‘brig
  17. Puts the Panamera back on equal terms with top-end rivals on paper. Goes and handles well enough to beat most of them on the road. The competition that has materialized at the expensive end of the market for fast four-door GT cars of late has evidently come as something of a surprise to Porsche. When the company introduced the second-generation Panamera in 2016, 542bhp was considered to be plenty for the Turbo version. Then along came the Mercedes-AMG GT63 S, Audi RS7 Sportback and BMW M8 Competition four-doors, all offering enough grunt to put the ‘big’ Porsche well and truly in the shade –
  18. Probably not quite at its full potential as a simpler, sweeter-handling fast GT car, but nearer the mark than it was. A very fast, capable, usable all-rounder worth considering. A modern big Porsche with a bit more sporting soul. That was always the idea with the upper mid-range, GTS-badged version of the Panamera, which has just been revised as part of a wider facelift for the car. But somehow Porsche has always struggled somewhat with the GTS’s particular execution; and that may help explain why a bit more commitment has been applied this time around, in an effort to finally give Panamera
  19. Most popular Panamera is far more impressive, capable and rewarding to drive than the original, and genuinely economical The idea of buying yourself an imposing and highly capable Porsche four-door GT car for the thick end of £100k, yet deliberately denying yourself the two most stirring twin-turbo V8 applications in favour of a more economical electrified model, might look an odd decision to those who imagine using private funds on the purchase.Why have a £101,690 Panamera 4S E-Hybrid, tested here, when for a mere £5500 more you can have the simpler, lighter, sportier, better-sounding and
  20. Report suggests former Ferrari F1 team boss will leave Lamborghini to take on role overseeing the sport Lamborghini boss Stefano Domenicali is set to leave the firm to become the new CEO of Formula 1, according to a report by F1 website RaceFans. Domenicali, who ran the Ferrari F1 team prior to joining Lamborghini, is mooted to be taking over from current F1 supremo Chase Carey, who has run the sport since January 2017 on behalf of Liberty Media. The appointment of Domenicali would result in a strong presence of ex-Ferrari personnel at the head of the sport; F1’s managing director is ex-Fe
  21. Smart looks and a truly spacious interior mark out this new seven-seat SUV. Does it also appeal on the road? It’s always so tempting, whenever Kia launches a new model, to contemplate just how far this manufacturer of cheap and occasionally not-so-cheerful cars has come over the years.From a design and general appeal point of view, it’s light years ahead of where it once was and, with the launch of its fourth-generation Sorento SUV, things are getting better still.This handsome new brute represents quite a step-change from the previous Sorento. Not only is it the first model to sit on Kia’s
  22. Storied M3 is perhaps the best-known M car, but it's not the only jewel in the division's crown BMW's M division launched its first production car almost 35 years ago, and has recently revealed the new Concept M4. We take a look back at the firm's most iconic models The racing subsidiary initially created to facilitate BMW’s motorsport program during the 1960s and 1970s, BMW Motorsport GmbH went on to be responsible for some of the most celebrated road cars of all time. M division was founded in May 1972 with 35 employees to supplement BMW's road car portfolio with specially enhanced mode
  23. Special-edition Cooper S hatchback takes styling cues from 1964 Monte Carlo rally winner Mini has revealed a special edition model of its Cooper S hot hatch, inspired by the iconic car in which Paddy Hopkirk won the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally. Dubbed the Mini Paddy Hopkirk Edition, the model is based on the Cooper S and will be available from October in three guises: 3dr, 5dr and an even hotter John Cooper Works (JCW) variant. The special-edition car will be offered in selected markets that have yet to be specified by Mini. The Paddy Hopkirk Edition pairs a red body with a white roof, channell
  24. Dramatically restyled crossover offers petrol, diesel and electric powertrains; deliveries to start in April The new Vauxhall Mokka has gone on sale in the UK, with prices starting from £20,735 and the electric Mokka-e priced from £30,840. The radically restyled crossover is based on the PSA Group’s Common Modular Platform (CMP), which can accommodate both combustion and electric powertrains, and will be available with the same choice of three engines - two petrol and one diesel - as its Peugeot 2008 sibling. The Mokka-e uses the same 134bhp motor and 50kWh battery as the e-2008. It promis
  25. Electrified version of flagship SUV packs 254bhp and is now on sale from £29,995 MG has ushered in its first plug-in hybrid with a new electrified variant of its HS flagship SUV, available to order next month from £29,995. The PHEV will be sold alongside the all-new 5 electric estate and the smaller ZS EV, as MG targets 50% of total sales being EVs and PHEVs by 2021. It currently claims to have the highest proportional EV mix of any mainstream manufacturer with a combustion offering. The new HS Plug-in pairs a 160bhp 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine with a 121bhp electric motor for a c
  26. UK's first affordable electric estate is available in two trim levels and priced from £24,995 MG has opened order books for its new 5 electric estate ahead of customer deliveries kicking off in November. Priced from £24,995 in entry-level Excite trim and £26,995 in range-topping Exclusive form, the 5 is the only electric estate car currently available to buy in Europe, and will play a key role in helping MG to achieve a 50% plug-in sales mix by 2021. MG is well under way with its transition to becoming a maker of EVs, with the 5 arriving alongside a new plug-in hybrid version of its HS SUV
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