Motoring news November 2016

Holden’s SUV strategy is starting to take shape and it relies heavily on America. The seven-seat GMC Acadia will arrive in 2018 wearing  a Holden badge, finally giving the brand a credible alternative to Mazda CX-9, Toyota Kluger, Nissan Pathfinder, Hyundai Santa Fe and Kia Sorento.

The Acadia will be offered with a V6 petrol engine, although a diesel may also join the line-up.

Before then, Holden will usher in another new nameplate – Equinox – to compete in the popular mid-sized SUV segment dominated by Mazda CX-5, Subaru Forester, Nissan X-Trail and Toyota RAV4.

Due early in 2017, Equinox partially replaces the underwhelming Captiva and is a crucial new arrival in the fight  to boost Holden’s SUV sales.

Holden has also revealed an updated version of Trax, which competes in the growing small SUV class.

Report: Toby Hagon
Published in RoyalAuto Nov 2016

Front view of the Land Rover Discovery

Techno Disco

The fifth generation of Land Rover’s Discovery has broken cover at the Paris Motor Show. Sporting a sleeker exterior inspired by the smaller Discovery Sport, the seven-seat Discovery will focus on technology, with new systems to help it go further off-road, as well as improved connectivity, including up to nine USB ports. A new lighter aluminium body brings significant fuel savings, which will be enhanced with the addition of four-cylinder versions.

The new Discovery arrives in Australia in mid-2017.

Final touches

Mazda continues its safety push with a mild update to CX-5 ahead of an all-new model, expected some time in 2017. The revised range picks up the previously optional Safety Pack on all variants, which incorporates low-speed city auto-braking in forward and reverse and blind-spot monitoring. Previously an option costing about $1200, this adds $700 to the price of all but the flagship Akera, which has long had the Safety Pack.

i-Catching

It’s all about the look with Hyundai’s new i30. Designed and developed in Europe, the new small car evolves the five-door hatchback’s exterior themes but introduces a radical new look inside, dominated by a floating screen on top of a simplified but more elegant dashboard.

Beneath the skin is a choice of three four-cylinder engines: a 2.0-litre petrol, a 1.6-litre turbo-petrol and a 1.6-litre turbo-diesel.

The new i30 arrives in Australia in the second quarter of 2017, with a performance i30 N version (with a 2.0-litre turbo-petrol engine) expected later in the year.

These i30s headline a big year for the Korean brand; also arriving in 2017 is the Genesis G70, the Prius-rivalling Ioniq hybrid and a new small SUV.

Haval range grows

Chinese SUV brand Haval has expanded its family with the arrival of the H6. Powered by a 2.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-petrol engine, the five-seat H6 is a rival to Mazda CX-5 and Toyota RAV4 and sells at an initial launch price of $29,990 drive-away.

As with the H2, H8 and H9 already on sale, the primary sales pitch with the H6 is value. Standard fare includes a 7.0-inch touchscreen, dual-zone ventilation, parking sensors front and rear, smart-key entry and blind-spot monitoring.

For now the only transmission is a manual – ruling out most SUV buyers – but an auto is due in 2017.

Parking trick

Parking is now a whole lot easier, at least for the top end of town. BMW has joined Tesla in offering a remote parking function on its 7-Series limousine.

Controlled via the digital Display Key fob, the feature allows owners to direct the car into a spot that would otherwise not allow the doors to be opened.

Other makers, including Audi and Mercedes-Benz, are working on offering remote parking technology in Australia.

Mazda CX-5
Hyundai i30
Haval SUV
BMW Series 7