Archive for Joe Simpson

Volkswagen Golf VII pictures and hands-on

Volkswagen Golf VII pictures and hands-on

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Let’s cut to the chase. This is the iPhone 5 of the car world if there ever was one. Longer, "lower", wider and - crucially - lighter, one can’t help but compare the new, seventh-generation Volkswagen Golf to a certain phone recently unveiled by the... >>

Mercedes-Benz C220 CDi BlueEfficiency AMG Sport Coupe pictures and hands-on

Mercedes-Benz C220 CDi BlueEfficiency AMG Sport Coupe pictures and hands-on

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Let’s say you’ve read our hands-on pieces of the Mercedes SLS and SL AMGs and now fancy something sporty with the three-pointed star on the bonnet, but your budget’s a little more five figures than six. Then perhaps a new, 2013 Model Year C-Class... >>

Kia Cee’d Sportswagon 1.6 CRDi 3
3.5 stars

Kia Cee’d Sportswagon 1.6 CRDi 3

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Are you ready to join the “wagon revolution”? Taking its lead from the lofty heights of the likes of Audi’s RS brand, the latest addition to the Kia range - an estate version of the company's Ford Focus-rivaling Cee’d – has been renamed the... >>

Volkswagen CC GT TDi 170 DSG pictures and hands-on

Volkswagen CC GT TDi 170 DSG pictures and hands-on

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Your company car policy says you need four seats and four doors. Which is a pesky pain, because you’ve just got a promotion and you’ve always fancied a nice-looking coupe, something like an Audi A5 or BMW 3-Series. Unfortunately, they’re off limits... >>

Mercedes-Benz SL63 AMG pictures and hands-on

Mercedes-Benz SL63 AMG pictures and hands-on

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You’d think two cars sharing what is fundamentally the same engine would feel very similar, right? Not in the case of the Mercedes-Benz SL63 AMG and its supercar brother, the SLS AMG: these are two different beasts as you can see from our hands-on... >>

Volkswagen Golf GTi cabriolet first drive pictures and hands-on

Volkswagen Golf GTi cabriolet first drive pictures and hands-on

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It’s a bit of a perennial favourite, the Golf GTi. Right now, pretty much every one of its competitors offers more power and the promise of greater road thrills, but few can match the all-round talents and general classlessness of the GTi. It’s still... >>

Hyundai Veloster 1.6GDi Sport DCT
3.0 stars

Hyundai Veloster 1.6GDi Sport DCT

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In the words of Monty Python: now for something completely different. Well, as different as things get in the seemingly ever-samey world of cars. Because the Hyundai Veloster you see in the picture above is a unique beast. Ever had the desire for a two-door... >>

Land Rover Discovery 4 SDV6 HSE
4.0 stars

Land Rover Discovery 4 SDV6 HSE

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A car industry executive once told us that no matter how good his company’s new model was, he knew it wasn’t going to sell many, because people in the UK were badge snobs. Look around you at how many BMWs and Audis there are on the road, and its hard... >>

VW Scirocco 2.0 TSi GT
4.5 stars

VW Scirocco 2.0 TSi GT

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It’s been around for quite a while now, the VW Scirocco. After a 16-year hiatus, the Scirocco came storming back into the VW Range in 2008. We’re not in the habit of reviewing cars that have been on the market for four years, but – as our recent... >>

Toyota GT86
5.0 stars

Toyota GT86

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When was the last time you were excited by a Toyota? Prius, Auris, Yaris – all laudable cars but hardly the last word in excitement. But that changes here. Under new boss Akio Toyoda, the firm wants to get you excited about its products again and to... >>

Porsche Silverstone Driving Experience pictures and hands-on

Porsche Silverstone Driving Experience pictures and hands-on

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"Bit of power now, little bit more, no too much!" shouts Ed, just as the Porsche 911 I’m at the wheel of begins to spin round and we pirouette backwards through the water fountains. Belatedly, my mental faculties kick back in, I press the brake and... >>

BMW 520 Efficient Dynamics
4.0 stars

BMW 520 Efficient Dynamics

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What price size? When we reviewed the BMW 320d Efficient Dynamics a few weeks back we found it to be fundamentally brilliant and concluded by saying that it was all the car you could ever need. So why might you want to take a step up the BMW ladder, shell... >>

Vauxhall Astra GTC SRI CDTI
4.0 stars

Vauxhall Astra GTC SRI CDTI

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We’ve already had a day of seat time in the almost comically overpowered VXR version of the Astra GTC. But what if your tastes - and frankly - your wallet, would prefer something a little more restrained and economical? Enter the (deep breath) Astra... >>

BMW 320d Efficient Dynamics
4.5 stars

BMW 320d Efficient Dynamics

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The BMW 3-Series is a car that epitomises the phrase "all things to all people". It’s consistently one of the 10 best-selling cars in the UK - and it’s easy to see why. It’s big enough for four people and luggage, yet small enough to park easily.... >>

Citroen DS5 DSport Hybrid4 200 Airdream
4.0 stars

Citroen DS5 DSport Hybrid4 200 Airdream

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One question that arises time and again, is why car makers build concept cars. And why the stuff that actually appears in the showrooms looks nothing like the wild design that appeared on a motorshow stand two years earlier. The answers of course, are... >>

Lexus GS450h
4.0 stars

Lexus GS450h

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It might come as a surprise to learn that this new Lexus GS is actually the fourth generation of the model line. And if you’re lucky enough to have climbed to near the top of the company car tree, this car is rather good news. It not only means there’s... >>

Honda Civic 1.4 iVTEC SE
3.5 stars

Honda Civic 1.4 iVTEC SE

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When reviewing a car, we can ask a manufacturer for a specific model and engine, but rarely have any say in what spec we get. This means they usually send us one that’s in top line trim and then had the entire options list thrown at it for good measure.... >>

Renault Twizy pictures and hands-on

Renault Twizy pictures and hands-on

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The first time you see a Renault Twizy on the road, we suspect one of two things will happen. You’ll either laugh. A lot. Or you’ll be desperate to have a go. But get over the fact that it’s got a name that only the French could come up with and... >>

Bentley Mulsanne pictures and hands-on

Bentley Mulsanne pictures and hands-on

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Ever wondered how the other half live? Well, today we got to find out, during a short acquaintance with Bentley’s newest car, the Mulsanne. A moment of context is needed here. Bentley’s sales have climbed from almost nothing in the past 15 years,... >>

Porsche 911 Carrera (991) 2012 pictures and hands-on

Porsche 911 Carrera (991) 2012 pictures and hands-on

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The Porsche 911 is a Marmite car. Before reading any of the words we put down on this page, you’re going into this article either believing that the 911 is the best sports car in the world. Or that it’s some stupid, anachronistic development of the... >>

Renault Grand Scenic Dynamique TomTom 1.5 dCi
4.0 stars

Renault Grand Scenic Dynamique TomTom 1.5 dCi

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When it first appeared in 1996, the original Scenic broke ground as the first "small" people carrier to hit our roads. It did without the seven seats of existing people carriers such as its big brother Espace, but brought all that was loved about that... >>

Kia Rio CRDi 2
3.5 stars

Kia Rio CRDi 2

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In August 2010, we had one of the worst hire car experiences of our life. It came courtesy of a Kia Rio saloon that looked like it had been dropped down a flight of stairs and housed a pack of wild dogs for the previous few months. Above 50 miles an hour,... >>

MG Icon concept pictures and hands-on

MG Icon concept pictures and hands-on

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Remember MG Rover and its demise? We do, vividly. In a tale of blame, accusation and much finger pointing one of the upshots (some would say causes) of MG Rover’s failure was a proposed buy out by - then subsequent selling off of model platforms to... >>

Range Rover Evoque Victoria Beckham edition pictures and hands-on

Range Rover Evoque Victoria Beckham edition pictures and hands-on

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Remember when the Range Rover Evoque was first unveiled at a Chelsea art gallery by George Lamb and they announced Victoria Beckham would be working on its design? No, us neither. But she, er, has been working with Range Rover on the Evoque. And this... >>

Mercedes Concept Style Coupe pictures and hands-on

Mercedes Concept Style Coupe pictures and hands-on

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China is now the biggest market in the world for most luxury and premium car brands. Once you know that, it comes as less of a surprise that Mercedes chose to show this new concept car at the motor show in Beijing this week, rather than New York two weeks... >>