This week: Toyota GT86 successor detailed, Toyota GR Yaris prototype driven, new cars of 2020 and much more
2 January 2020

Toyota and Subaru are again set to join forces to develop a next-generation Toyota GT86 and Subaru BRZ sports car, and are ramping up work on the model.

The Mk1 GT86 was no slouch but Autocar understands that the Mk2 will get a significant power boost over the outgoing version, generating perhaps as much as 255bhp.

From ties with Toyota’s Gazoo Racing division to Subaru’s powertrain input, the latest BRZ and its sister car are set to gain a raft of new features. We’ve got all the details in this week’s mag.

ALSO IN THIS ISSUE

In this week’s news section, Mazda continues to refine its electric vision, now ruling out a ‘big-battery’ EV. The Japanese firm reckons that these bigger battery cars are less environmentally friendly than even diesel-powered models, stacking its chips on smaller batteries for the future.

As strict new European CO2 targets loom, Jeep is also looking to cut back on emissions, considering a plug-in hybrid Wrangler and even an electric SUV. Elsewhere, the upcoming Cupra Formentor has been spied, looking virtually unchanged from the concept car shown at the 2018 Geneva motor show, while PSA and Fiat Chrysler confirm their industry-shaking merger, now formalised in a legally binding agreement.

We’ve also got the lowdown on Jaguar Land Rover’s acquisition of off-road Land Rover tuner Bowler, before capping the news section with an examination of the world’s largest car market - China - and our yearly round-up of the automotive industry’s winners and losers.

Our Verdict

Toyota GT86

This light, uncomplicated coupé promises so much. Can the Toyota GT86 deliver?

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Driven this week

Reviews

The pick of this week’s first drives is the Toyota GR Yaris prototype. While a final judgement will have to wait until the production model, our tester found a fun, formidable machine which suggests a pleasing new addition to the hot hatch ranks.

Next, it’s the turn of the Mercedes-AMG GT R Roadster, which offers a heady, if precarious, drive, before we step up into Jaguar’s F-Pace D300 Sport to find refinement and pulse-raising handling in equal measure.

In the road test, Volkswagen’s Grand California motorhome steps into the spotlight. A size bump and a classy ambience are obvious plus points, but do these come at the cost of some cleverness?

Features

To mark the first issue of 2020, we round-up the new metal that’s rolling out in the new year. There are new cars for everyone in this first year of a fresh decade, from the brawny and highly anticipated new Land Rover Defender to the next-gen hot hatches like the Corsa-e VXR.

Other cars coming into showrooms in 2020 include Jaguar’s electric-only XJ, several new hot Golfs and Lamborghini’s first hybrid, the Sian, which is also its fastest ever accelerating production car.

Opinions

Steve Cropley roars into the new year at the wheel of a Porsche Carrera, before listening to F1 reporter David Tremayne recount his almost fatally disastrous attempt to break the UK land speed record. Meanwhile, Matt Prior muses on the prospects of the city car - he’s not making any predictions, though.

Deals

Cheap-as-chips superminis are the name of the game for James Ruppert this week, Peugeot 206s and even an old Mercedes A-Class are a pittance to purchase and even less to run. In our nearly new buying guide, we set our sights on a spacey and practical Mk2 Volkswagen Tiguan, while the ever-attractive Mercedes SLK 55 AMG is the star of this week’s used guide.

Where to buy

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Autocar?magazine is available through all good newsagents. You can also buy one-off copies of Autocar magazine from Newsstand, delivered to your door the morning after.

Digital copies can be downloaded from Zinio and the Apple iTunes store

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Comments
10

5 April 2018

As usual, this week's edition (dated 04APR2018), is a very good read, and well worth the investment. The road test of the eighth generation of Roll-Royce Phantom - with its "mahogany panelling" - illustrates that moneyed wealth, should NOT be confused with good-taste!

The sales pitch for next week's issue (to be dated 11APR2018), whets our appetite with the Used Buying Guide ?. . . ?"Mercedes-Benz CLS. Can't afford the new one? Then read our guide to Merc's original style icon".

The original CLS certainly was a style icon, with all the svelte elegance of a Parisian - or Italian - chic designer item.

That streamlined elegance was lost when the original's "facelift" incorporated the bluff, Teutonic, more upright, corporate Mercedes radiator grill.

The new, current, incarnation of the CLS (page 29, of this week's magazine), shares all the style, delicacy, and substantial "presence" of a rugby prop forward! ?It is not a case of "Can not ?AFFORD ?the new CLS?". ?More a question of why would anyone wish to purchase such a vulgar and brutish vehicle?

It is (again) a reminder that the ownership of wealth, is NOT the same as the possession of good taste.

RCT(V)

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18 July 2018

....totally agree!

19 July 2018

Why the GT2 RS isn't ?a five-star Porsche?

Well, according to the German car magazine Sportauto?the McLaren 720 S is the better supercar.

The 720 S is razor sharp and yet poised, while the GT2 RS is a bit unhinged.

22 July 2018

Good overall read this week, except for the iPace vs Tesla review, which is a biased storyline developed clearly ahead of the cars being reviewed. ?Essentially, the premise looks to convey an analogy between two passenger jets and how the second to market - the Boeing 707 -?went on to lead it. Unfortunately, much like his story, he apply's 20th century motoring thinking to a 21st century ownership problem. In other words, he clearly doesn't get what the shft to electric is about. Not only that, many of the facts are just incorrect, like 0-60 time that amongst the others if they had been?published correctly, would make the reader question how the author could possibly have reached such a conclusion. This disregards the fact that the iPace is better compared with the Model 3 (same size). Not only that, but the test cars were over 25% apart on costs - with the iPace being more expensive. Really dissappointing journalism.?

8 August 2018

Oh good... Another JLR product takes the cover spot. ?Must be at least an issue or two since the last one.?

8 August 2018

Oh good... Another JLR product takes the cover spot. ?Must be at least an issue or two since the last one.?

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