• Looking Back at the Best Cars of 2016

    2016 may have been a bad year for many things, but one area that hasn’t felt its icy touch is the auto industry. We’ve put together a list of a few of the best vehicles to hit the road this year and why we think they’re worth looking at if you’re in the market for something new.

    Audi A5 Sportback

    A compact executive saloon that’s stylish enough to impress at both business and social occasions with a lush interior and improved fuel efficiency? Sign us up. With performance on top of that in the form of a smooth, refined ride and monstrous acceleration this is a definite buy, and if the £38,000 plus price tag is a little outside of your price range it won’t be too long before dealers like AA Cars are wheeling out this newest model at a fraction of the price.

    Honda Fit

    Considering all the bells and whistles it comes with, the Fit’s price of just under £20,000 feels fair. As well as a rear view camera, this stylish subcompact is surprisingly spacious for how little space it takes up on the road. Not to mention, it handles like a dream and gets fuel economy, making it a great option for first-timers.

    Hyundai i10

    Coming in at under £11,000 is What Car?’s winner of the best city car of the year, the i10. It’s roomy enough for any task you turn it to, its fuel economy is through the roof, and it looks good to boot, making it a great car for any driver.

    Skoda Superb

    Once upon a time they were the butt of many a joke, but since VW took ownership of Skoda they’ve really turned things around and this year’s Superb is the culmination of all that effort. It’s comfortable, powerful, economical to run and even cheap to buy—affordability has never stopped being a priority for this brand.

    Volkswagen Passat Estate GTE

    Speaking of VW, their showing is perhaps the best electric car of the year. The distance it can cover on electricity alone is an impressive twenty miles and the space and handling it provides means it makes a great family or business car.

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    “Dial ‘SL65’ if you want a classic aluminum-bodied two-seat roadster with an abundance of luxo-tech and V12 power,” blogs Dan Scanlan.

    Inside the ‘17 Mercedes-Benz SL65 Roadster’s sleek-but-familiar frame resides a supercar’s worth of power – a handcrafted twin-turbocharged 6-liter V-12 with, delivering 621 horsepower and 738 pound-feet of torque at a low 2,300 to 4,300 rpm. And, builder Antonio Donadai’s signature on its carbon fiber engine cover!

    This SL is the seventh in a series of arguably the best known Benzes, born in 1954 as the 300 SL Gullwing coupe. Tests of uber-SLs are rarities, the last one we had an SL550 three years ago with 429 horsepower. It hit 60 mph in 4.2 seconds and 100-mph in 9.7 seconds, averaging 20 mpg on premium fuel with auto engine shutoff engaged. Now we had the latest SL65 with five different driving programs – Comfort, Sport, Sport +, RACE and Individual.

    Each successive selection makes engine and transmission response a bit quicker and tightens the suspension and via software. SPORT+ mode really firms up the suspension, snaps off firm upshifts and throttle-blipping downshifts with some serious snarl. INDIVIDUAL mode lets the driver mix how they want the steering, drive system and suspension. Then RACE mode slams shifts at full throttle and backs off stability control as it sets suspension on full firm. RACE also likes you to paddle shift, guided by a handy upshift light.

    Set it in Sport+ and we sprinted to 60-mph in 4 seconds flat with wheelspin in the second and third gear shifts, reaching 100 mph in 8.2 seconds. Passing power was abundant, the engine snarling, the wide rear rubber giving just a wiggle of traction squirm. We averaged 10 mpg on premium. Sport, Sport + and RACE also allowed the exhaust to really roar, with an explosive “pop-pop-SNAP!” from the pipes when you backed off.

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  • £212,904 – the cost of a lifetime’s motoring

    The average motorist could buy a property with the money they spend on car care over a lifetime, reveals new research.

    Online car repair marketplace, ClickMechanic, claims we spend £212,904 on maintaining our cars over a 63-year driving career.

    We’ll also buy a total of 14 cars and spend an estimated 12,600 hours (or 525 days) of our lifetime behind the wheel.

    Driving costs start with the average learner driver spending at least £690 to pass a test, and taking around 20-30 hours to do so.

    Insurance is another time and money drain with more than 80% of drivers now buying their car insurance online, with most spending approximately an hour comparing prices and purchasing policies. Over time, this could cost as much as 63 hours of your time and £29,000 over your lifetime.

    Further figures revealed that whilst modern cars are reliable and owners may only be looking at calling out mechanics approximately twice every three years, this equates to an average of £683 per repair.

    In real terms, this could amount to a staggering £28,686. In addition to the cost, the survey found that we spend an additional 84 hours waiting around for our car to be serviced at an average cost of £19,700.

    Add to these figures the 84 hours plus £28,560 we spend on road tax, breakdown cover, replacement tyres and parking it is easy to see how the cost in time and money escalates over a lifetime.

    Depending on how far you commute on a daily basis, you could be looking to spend at least £101,000 on petrol or diesel alone to fuel your car and as much as 600 hours (or 25 days) at a petrol station throughout the course of your lifetime.

    It was also found that the average amount spent on MOTs during those roadworthy years could be around £3,000. MOTs can be even more expensive if you need repairs, but they can also be time consuming. The average driver spends over 60 hours waiting for MOTs to be undertaken.

    Cleaning your car uses up precious time and money too. The survey found that even cleaning a car racked up the hours. For all weather washes, that’s approximately 168 hours, if it takes 40 minutes to clean it by hand, or take to the car wash/valet. Washing your car four times a year at average cost of £9 per time adds up to £2,268 over your driving lifetime.

    Even the smallest of car-related chores, such as putting air in the tyres, can add up. What may seem like a five-minute job, racks up a surprising total of 63 hours at the tyre pump over the course of a lifetime!

    “It’s staggering when you add up how much we invest in buying, owning and maintaining a vehicle over our lifetime, both in terms of time and money spent,” said Andrew Jervis, co-founder of ClickMechanic.

    “We all lead busy lives and are stretched for time, so anything that helps us save time as well as money is a bonus and many of us use cost comparison websites and other platforms to try and reduce the time spent comparing quotes and making sure we’re paying a reasonable price.

    “We’ve tasked ourselves to bring trust and transparency to the automotive repair industry. Being able to source a mechanic easily or get a quote for a repair online has to go in some way towards that, both in terms of saving time and knowing how much you should be paying for your repair.”

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  • Win a Nissan Skyline driving experience

    How would you like to get behind the wheel of a GTR Nissan Skyline? As cool cars go, it’s up there with the best of them!

    Thanks to UCCC we’re giving you the chance to drive this high performance car for three adrenaline fuelled laps.

    The Nissan Skyline was featured in the Fast and Furious films and has a twin turbo engine making it every motor enthusiasts dream to get behind the wheel.

    Your experience will start with a briefing. Afterwards you’ll be guided by an experienced instructor who’ll give you expert tips so you get the most from your driving experience. You’ll then take the car around a track of your choice selected from one of four UK locations.

    This is a must for all petrol heads so enter now! Best of luck!
    How to Enter?

    To enter, simply leave a comment with your name of who you’d like to win this prize here on our Facebook page:

    WIN A NISSAN SKYLINE DRIVING EXPERIENCESimply comment below with your name to be in with a chance of winning this amazing driving experience. Winner picked at random. Closes 1st Nov.
    Posted by Cool Cars and Girls on Wednesday, September 30, 2015

    Closing Date – Nov 1st 2015

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  • Looking For A Cool Fuel Efficient City Car? Fiat 500 Ticks All The Boxes

    One of the things that is most important to car buyers nowadays, especially as many of us are still suffering from the damages the recession did to the economy, is the fuel efficiency. Although the style, design and interior are all factored into your decision, it is likely if you’re looking for a new car that you are concerned with how many miles you will get to the gallon with each time you fill it up. If that is the case, then the Fiat 500 could be the car you are looking for.

    Available at dealerships across the UK such as Richard Hardie, the Fiat 500 has been getting a lot of attention and rightly so. Let’s take a closer look at one of the safest cars on the market, and one that’s also a lot of fun to drive too! Some pictures of the Fiat 500 to start us off as as you can see, it’s such a cool looking small city car.

    Incredible Fuel Efficiency

    As it is a car designed to be driven around the city and towns, you would expect the Fiat 500 to be fuel efficient. However, we were surprised at just how efficient it actually is. Take the revolutionary TwinAir engine model that gives you a staggering 69 miles to the gallon. Even if you opt for one of the smaller, 1.2 or 1.4 litre models you still can benefit from either 59 or 49 miles to the gallon.

    Five Star NCAP Rated Car

    As the saying goes, safety comes first and the Fiat 500 will not let you down in this regard. The car was awarded a full five stars from the European NCAP ratings and looking at the array of safety features built-in to the car, it is not hard to see why. Along with a total of six airbags, the car also comes with ESC or Electronic Stability Control. This means that regardless of the conditions of the road are, the car will give you as good a grip as any city car.

    It also uses ABS along with EBD and AS/MSR anti slip systems for that extra level of control, support and safety. The car even comes with the practical Tyre Pressure Monitoring System on the dash that will alert you if the pressure is getting too low. No wonder the Fiat 500 is often referred to as one of the safest cars on the road.

    Customisable And Cool

    Fiat have never been known as a car manufacturer that shies away from creating cars that are not only fun to drive, but fun to look at as well. The Fiat 500 has always had a very iconic look; one that has been improved on over the years. You can choose from a total of 11 different colours for the interior, allowing you to customise it to your preferences and tastes.

    Along with the many other bits of technology utilised in the car, such as the Blue&Me navigation system, it is easy to see the attraction with the Fiat 500. Not only will it save you money driving it around for those day to day city commutes, you will look good and feel safe doing it. What’s not to like?

    Finally, this infographic showcases the Fiat 500 family

    The Fiat 500 Family – An infographic by the team at The Fiat 500 Family

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