• 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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  • 2017 Honda Civic Type R Prototype Video Debut

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    The new Honda Civic Type R Prototype has been revealed at the 2016 Paris Motor Show, offering an insight into the styling of the next-generation Civic Type R which will be officially unveiled in 2017.

    Based on the low and wide proportions of the new Civic hatchback, the Type R Prototype is enhanced by muscular body styling and modifications to aid aerodynamic performance. The exterior is clothed in a highly reflective, finely-grained brushed aluminium-effect finish unique to the show car.

    At the front, the aggressive bumper is accentuated with a winged carbon fibre splitter and sporty red accent line. Additional slatted ducts add width to the bumper, and diamond-mesh inserts fill the sculpted air intakes.

    Honda’s famous red ‘H’ badge – which adorns all Type R models – sits above a new air vent at the nose of the car. There is also a new intake on the bonnet, with an air scoop sited centrally in a trapezoidal recess. Smoked lenses for the LED headlights, indicators and side repeaters reflect the Type R Prototype’s more aggressive character.

    Carbon fibre side skirts run the length of the wheelbase, between 20-inch piano black alloy wheels with red accents and 245-section high-performance tyres. Enlarged arches accommodate the new wheels.

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    A substantial carbon fibre diffuser runs below the wider rear bumper, which frames three fully-functional tailpipes with a pair of directional strakes at each side. The central tailpipe is of a smaller diameter and is highlighted in bright metallic red. Unique peaks at the roof flanks point backwards towards a dramatic, visually striking rear wing.

    The next-generation Honda Civic Type R was engineered within the same development programme as the other members of the Civic family, and will be officially unveiled in production form in 2017. It will be produced at Honda of the UK Manufacturing (HUM) in Swindon – the global manufacturing hub for the five-door hatchback, with sales expected to begin in Europe during the second half of 2017.

    The Type R will be exported to markets around the world, including the US – which will mark the first time that any Honda-badged Type R has been officially sold in North America.

  • 2018 Honda CIVIC TYPE R Prototype OFFICIAL Trailer

    By , , Permalink

    The new Honda Civic Type R Prototype has been revealed at the 2016 Mondial de L’Automobile in Paris (located in Hall 3), offering an insight into the styling of the next-generation Civic Type R which will be officially unveiled in 2017.

    Based on the low and wide proportions of the new Civic hatchback, the Type R Prototype is enhanced by muscular body styling and modifications to aid aerodynamic performance. The exterior is clothed in a highly reflective, finely-grained brushed aluminium-effect finish unique to the show car.

    Carbon fibre side skirts run the length of the wheelbase, between 20-inch piano black alloy wheels with red accents and 245-section high-performance tyres. Enlarged arches accommodate the new wheels.

    A substantial carbon fibre diffuser runs below the wider rear bumper, which frames three fully-functional tailpipes with a pair of directional strakes at each side. The central tailpipe is of a smaller diameter and is highlighted in bright metallic red. Unique peaks at the roof flanks point backwards towards a dramatic, visually striking rear wing.

    The Type R will be exported to markets around the world, including the US – which will mark the first time that any Honda-badged Type R has been officially sold in North America.

  • Marquez delighted at extending unbeaten run at COTA

    Marc Marquez was understandably very happy to extend his unbeaten run at the Circuit of the Americas after a dominant display in Austin.

    Marquez came into the weekend overwhelming favourite and delivered, topping every session over the weekend bar Sunday morning’s warmup session. 

    After early pressure from Jorge Lorenzo and Andrea Dovizioso, Marquez eventually broke away from the rest of the field, on his way to claiming an unprecedented fourth victory at CotA and a tenth straight win in America, spanning over two class, three circuits and six years.

    Despite his domination over the years, Marquez was still nervous going into the unknown with the Michelin tyres. 

    “I’m very happy with how the whole weekend has gone. This is a circuit that I like, one of my favourite, but there were some unknowns here because just before the race we decided to run the soft front tyre,” said the 22-year-old.

    “In the end the team advised me very well, because the change gave me the good feeling with the bike that I had partly lost in the warm-up. I have to thank them all, as well as the Michelin technician. When I asked, they told me that I would be okay for the first 12-15 laps, and then after that I would have to manage the situation more, which is exactly what happened.

    In taking victory in Texas, Marquez has extended his World Championship lead to 21 points already after just three rounds, with the MotoGP paddock heading back to Spain for the next round in two weeks time.

    “We’ve taken another victory here in Austin and are now on a run of four in a row, which is great. In addition, the joy of the team after we won illustrates everything we’re working on,” said Marquez.

     

  • Marquez wins in America… again

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    Marc Marquez won his fourth straight race at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin Texas in dominant fashion by just over six seconds, ahead of Jorge Lorenzo and Andrea Iannone, whilst Valentino Rossi recorded his first DNF of 2016 crashing out of the race. 

    Marquez went into the America’s Grand Prix after winning all eight of the MotoGP races in America since making his debut in the premier class in 2013 and he extended the streak to nine today with sheer domination.

    Starting from pole position, Marquez came under early pressure from both Lorenzo and Dovizioso, however the duo nearly seriously managed to challenge Marquez who rode away from the field only backing off on the final lap to stop the victory being way more than the six seconds it ended being. 

    Lorenzo has a lonely race in seconds position ending just as far behind Marquez as he did ahead of Iannone, who himself was fortunate to inherit the final podium position after a nasty looking incident between Dani Pedrosa and Andrea Dovizioso. 

    Pedrosa’s bike appeared to have a problem before he lost the front end into turn one smashing into the left leg of third placed Dovizioso. It is the second time in just seven days that Dovizioso had been taken out of the race through no fault of his own after Iannone had knocked him off in Argentina last week.

    Pedrosa showed his class ensuring Dovizioso was okay before remounting and rejoining the race before the damage sustained eventually forced him to retire. After he pulled into the pit he walked down to the Ducati garage to apologise further and ensure the Italian was OK. 

    Maverick Viñales recorded a career best fourth position after getting the better of his team-mate who brought his Suzuki home in fifth position just ahead of top private bike Scott Redding. 

    Valentino Rossi’s title challenge took a serious turn for the worst when he lost the front end of his Yamaha M1 going into turn two and was forced to retire from the race. 

    Pol Espargaro beat out Michele Pirro, whilst Hector Barbera and Stefan Bradl rounded out the top ten. 

    There were also crashes for Loris Baz, Cal Crutchlow and Bradley Smith who all rejoined, with only Baz collecting any World Championship points. 

    Marquez now leads the World Championship standings by 21 points over Jorge Lorenzo. Valentino Rossi sits a further 12 points back as MotoGP heads back to Europe and to Jerez for the fourth round of the series in two weeks time.

    Photos via Repsol Honda 

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