When Chevrolet started offering the 1LE performance package for the V-6 Camaro last year, our initial conclusion was that the company had indeed moved the grip-to-grunt ratio too far to the left. At the 2016 running of our Lightning Lap competition, the junior 1LE shone, smashing the lap record for its class by more than eight seconds. But on the road, it was obvious that the chassis’s ability to produce lateral g-forces wasn’t matched by the engine’s harvest of back-punching longitudinal g’s.
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To get a real insight into the views of the people who are making the crossover boom happen, we arranged a secret unveil event, inviting a cross-section of Auto Express readers to give us their views on the Arona. The readers were told they were attending an unveil of an all-new SUV, but they weren’t aware which brand of car it was.
Four-wheel drive will be offered on some models. While a six-speed manual gearbox will be standard, an automatic option will be available.
More to the point, the 2018 model’s numbers beat out four-cylinder rivals such as the Toyota Camry and the Nissan Altima, while essentially matching the Mazda 6’s performance. Still, acceleration is not where the new Accord’s advantages lie.
Performance was also virtuous. the Mk3’s Family II range of engines, which were carried over from its predecessor, were always so much stronger and more efficient than Ford's outdated Pinto or limp-wristed CVH lumps in the Sierra. And the 16-valve GSi model aside, the 115bhp eight-valve 2.0i engine we tested was the most coveted.
For each fault, we asked the owner to identify time spent off the road using categories ranging from less than one day to more than a week. We also asked them to tell us how much the repairs cost, from being fixed under warranty for free to more than £1500. This information was weighted according to the severity of the fault; those that cost the most and kept the car off the road the longest were penalised most.
Now, away from the bright lights and press briefings of Europe’s biggest new car event, we’re keen to find out what ordinary members of the public actually think of SEAT’s newest arrival.
“The driving position appeals to me,” she told us. “A lot of women like to be higher up with a better view of the road, and I don’t need to be too close to the wheel to get that. It’s the feeling of security and being up off the ground that I like.”
"Somebody stopped by the farm with an old Model T, a junker, and just left it in our yard," Miller told Hemmings Classic Car in 2007. "I gave him 10 dollars and took it all apart to see how it worked."
Faraday Future, the once-hyped Tesla competitor, appears to be going through another rough patch after repeated scaling downs of its manufacturing targets and facilities following funding issues that cropped up this spring. Now, a string of high-profile departures points to more turmoil at the company.
As ever, most buyers in this market will buy on a PCP finance deal, where the X2 could be more competitive. Demand is expected to be high, though, meaning that Target Price discounts will be slim for the forseeable future.
sDrive models are front-wheel drive, while xDrive versions offer four-wheel drive. In any case, an automatic gearbox is standard, with seven speeds in petrol models and eight speeds in diesel versions.