• Recaro front sport seats
As with most modern BMW models, drivers will be able to select between Comfort, Eco Pro and Sport driving modes, which adjust the gearbox, engine and steering settings. Optional dynamic dampers can also be specified and can be placed in either Comfort or Sport modes. This also lowers the car's ride height slightly.
Cold and damp weather can put a strain on your car's 12-volt battery. Cold weather makes it harder for an engine to turn over, but unfortunately, as an EV driver will tell you, cold weather also has a negative impact on the power a battery can deliver. If you haven't changed your car battery recently, then it could be tired, and the cold weather means it might not play ball. Add in the additional power drain of heaters and other electrical devices, and it can become a critical component. If the battery struggles to provide enough power to start your car, the chances are it's on its way out.
Indeed, he was right: it is a petrol-electric plug-in hybrid (PHEV) – bang on-trend for our changing times, despite actually having been on sale in the UK since 2014. Underneath our Mitsubishi’s long bonnet is a conventional 2.0-litre petrol engine mated to two battery-driven electric motors, one at the front and one at the rear, enabling the Outlander PHEV to be driven by engine power alone, by the batteries or by a combination of the two. These batteries can be charged a little while the car’s on the move or plugged into the mains for a much more sizeable dosage. Fully charged, our PHEV should then have an electric-only range of around 30 miles. Perhaps more impressively, its official fuel consumption is listed at 166.1mpg and its CO2 figure as 41g/km, which is extraordinarily good for such a large and practical five-seat SUV.
We’d also option the Electronics package ($3000) for Sync 3 infotainment, dual-zone climate control, and more. Dodge Challenger fans can have a similarly equipped 707-hp Challenger SRT Hellcat for $65,290. The Chevy Camaro crowd can find a ZL1 coupe starting at $63,795. Both of those supercharged rivals are more powerful, but we think our Shelby GT350 ($61,045) will fulfill the fantasies of the Ford faithful—and anyone else with a pulse.
As soon as the covers were pulled off the Arona, we swooped in to get the inside line from our readers – and potential SEAT customers.
• 19-inch wheels and tires
The engine is not a bad one, but when compared to similar small engines found in both the Fiesta and Ibiza you realise its shortcomings. Both spin up quicker, are peppier and are better balanced. The latter is important because the Micra also suffers from harsh vibrations transmitted through the steering wheel and clutch pedal.