Joe Simpson - Page 2

Renault Scenic (2017) review: The master of reinvention
4.0 stars

Renault Scenic (2017) review: The master of reinvention

By Joe Simpson

Reinventing any vehicle represents a challenge. Change the name and you'll lose customers, keep the same name and you create certain expectations. And with the Scenic, Renault has one of the most distinctive names in the business - the car that started... Read more

Jaguar F-Pace review: Outpacing its SUV rivals?
4.5 stars

Jaguar F-Pace review: Outpacing its SUV rivals?

By Joe Simpson

Ten years ago, the concept of a Jaguar SUV would have been laughable. Since the brand twinned with Land Rover there was logic in the argument that Jag did the pretty saloons and coupes, while Land Rover did the off-road practical stuff. But the SUV market... Read more

Porsche 718 Boxster S review: Four-cylinder foibles
4.0 stars

Porsche 718 Boxster S review: Four-cylinder foibles

By Joe Simpson

Can you believe the Porsche Boxster is 20 years old? We barely can either. But back when the Spice Girls were miming Wannabe on Top of the Pops and kids were losing their minds over POGs, the Boxster was waiting in the wings, preparing itself to utterly... Read more

Seat Leon Cupra review: Simmering rather than on-the-boil hot hatch
4.0 stars

Seat Leon Cupra review: Simmering rather than on-the-boil hot hatch

By Joe Simpson

Seat launched the first-generation Leon in 1998. Sportier than the VW Golf, and cheaper than the Audi A3 (with which it shared much), it married the best qualities of both and the car reached its zenith as the range-topping Cupra R performance model.That... Read more

Mazda 2 review: One of the best cars in its class
4.0 stars

Mazda 2 review: One of the best cars in its class

By Joe Simpson

If you are thinking about buying a supermini then cars like the Ford Fiesta, Vauxhall Corsa, Renault Clio and maybe a Volkswagen Polo or something else from the VW group come to mind.One car that might be slightly off your radar is the Mazda 2. Despite... Read more

Peugeot 308 GTi review: Five door with added ooh la la
4.0 stars

Peugeot 308 GTi review: Five door with added ooh la la

By Joe Simpson

Think GTi and Volkswagen springs to mind, right? But as you'll know if you've read our review of the Peugeot 208 GTi, the French car-maker has something to say about its German cousin owning that moniker.And the very Golf-sized Peugeot 308 is now available... Read more

Jaguar I-Pace preview: More titillating than a Tesla?

Jaguar I-Pace preview: More titillating than a Tesla?

By Joe Simpson

It only seemed like 15 minutes ago that we were arguing about whether or not Jaguar should build an SUV. With the I-Pace shown off at the LA Motor Show - or AutomobilityLA as it's now known - Jag shows us it's not only thinking about building more SUVs,... Read more

Alfa Romeo Stelvio preview: Alfa’s first SUV

Alfa Romeo Stelvio preview: Alfa’s first SUV

By Joe Simpson

At the LA Motor Show - or AutomobilityLA as it's now known - it felt as though every brand brought a new SUV. From Honda and Mazda, through to Chevrolet, Jaguar and - most surprisingly of all - Alfa Romeo.Alfa has never made an SUV before, but the demand... Read more

Best of the LA Motor Show 2016: Mercedes, Jaguar, and more

Best of the LA Motor Show 2016: Mercedes, Jaguar, and more

By Joe Simpson

Los Angeles: Hollywood, sun, sand, silicon and celebrity.But it's also the USA's home of car culture. Every November a major motor show rolls into town, where the traditional big car brands' satellite studios show their thinking about what will be happening... Read more

Honda HR-V review: An unusual acquaintance
3.5 stars

Honda HR-V review: An unusual acquaintance

By Joe Simpson

Honda is one of Britain's great car makers. Yes, you did read that correctly. Despite being a Japanese firm, the company's vast operation in Swindon - where it builds the Civic, Jazz and CR-V - makes it one of the UK's biggest car producers.Which makes... Read more

Volvo V90 preview: Superior interior

Volvo V90 preview: Superior interior

By Joe Simpson

Volvo is on a roll. The Swedish company has come out of the shadows of the dowdy, safe image it once had and is managing to out-cool the established German brands with some very handsome new car designs which are awash with tech.Nothing we're going to... Read more

Volkswagen ID Concept preview: Electric atonement?

Volkswagen ID Concept preview: Electric atonement?

By Joe Simpson

"What does the ID stand for?" "Isn't Diesel'?!" shouted one lark across the Volkswagen stand at the Paris Motor Show.Follow the auto industry and you'll know the score by now about the pickle VW is in related to diesel emissions fixing. Yes, Volkswagen... Read more

Best of the Paris Motor Show 2016: BMW, Porsche, Citroen and more

Best of the Paris Motor Show 2016: BMW, Porsche, Citroen and more

By Joe Simpson

Every other year car makers, journalists and public descend on Paris for a few days in late September, to attend what is Europe's largest motor show, or Mondial de l'Automobile if you're feeling especially French.Alternating with the Frankfurt show in... Read more

Ford Focus RS first drive: The B-road baller

Ford Focus RS first drive: The B-road baller

By Joe Simpson

When was the last time you truly felt alive? Today more than ever, it is perhaps the experiences we have - and the moments when we feel a sense of risk, jeopardy, fear, exhilaration or just sheer joy - that make us truly wide-eyed.Which brings us to the... Read more

Volkswagen Golf R Estate review: The ultimate fast, all-weather estate
4.5 stars

Volkswagen Golf R Estate review: The ultimate fast, all-weather estate

By Joe Simpson

It is sometimes said that a Volkswagen Golf is the car for everyone. But who is everyone? There's now an electric Golf and a hybrid Golf in among the regular diesel and petrol Golfs, plus a powerful diesel one and a powerful petrol one.But which powerful... Read more

Mini John Cooper Works review: Mini by name, maxed-out by nature
4.5 stars

Mini John Cooper Works review: Mini by name, maxed-out by nature

By Joe Simpson

The Cooper Car company was founded in Surbiton in 1947. Charles Cooper and his son John began building racing cars that eventually changed the face of F1. In 1961, John Cooper conceived the first faster-and-tuned Mini, which dominated rallying in the... Read more

Volkswagen Touran review: Peak practicality
4.0 stars

Volkswagen Touran review: Peak practicality

By Joe Simpson

The world might have gone SUV and crossover mad, but if you've a brood of three (or more) to cart around then a mid-sized crossover like the Nissan Qashqai doesn't actually cut it. That's why - despite their perceived lack of sexiness - MPVs like the... Read more

Renault Megane 2016 review: Dynamique or dud?
3.5 stars

Renault Megane 2016 review: Dynamique or dud?

By Joe Simpson

This is the fourth-generation Renault Megane - the French company's mid-sized family hatchback, which has been with us since 1995. In that time, Renault has sold over a half a million of the things in the UK.Whereas its Volkswagen Golf competitor evolves... Read more

Porsche 911 Carrera (2017) review: Engine evolution?
4.5 stars

Porsche 911 Carrera (2017) review: Engine evolution?

By Joe Simpson

Throughout its history the Porsche 911 has undergone some critical design changes, each one of which naysayers have warned might kill off what makes this car so special. There have been impact bumpers, the move from an air-cooled to water-cooled engine,... Read more

Renault Zoe review: Electrical engineering
3.5 stars

Renault Zoe review: Electrical engineering

By Joe Simpson

It's been a typical complaint of the modern electric car that - from the perspective of asking price - most are simply too expensive to make sense. As one of the leaders in the electric-mobility revolution, Renault has sought to challenge that notion... Read more

Mercedes-Benz AMG GT first drive: The SLS is dead, long live the AMG GT

Mercedes-Benz AMG GT first drive: The SLS is dead, long live the AMG GT

By Joe Simpson

What can you learn about a car from simply driving it on a race track? Quite a lot as it happens, particularly when it's a sports car like the Mercedes-Benz AMG GT.Mercedes introduced its AMG GT last year as a replacement for the dramatic, gullwing-door... Read more

Volkswagen Golf 1.0-litre TSi first drive: Fore!

Volkswagen Golf 1.0-litre TSi first drive: Fore!

By Joe Simpson

We already know that the Volkswagen Golf is an excellent family hatchback. In fact, we'd still rate it as best in class — and three years on, still deserving of the 5-star review we gave it back at launch in 2013.But just how much Golf do you need?... Read more

Volvo XC90 review: Setting the SUV standard
5.0 stars

Volvo XC90 review: Setting the SUV standard

By Joe Simpson

In car terms, half a decade is a lifetime. So the last Volvo XC90's 12-year production run represents something of an unusual case. It sold well right to the end but was out-smarted by a new breed of big SUVs.Enter the new XC90. The first production car... Read more

Mercedes-Benz C220d AMG Line Coupe first drive: Covering all bases

Mercedes-Benz C220d AMG Line Coupe first drive: Covering all bases

By Joe Simpson

What's in a name? For their medium-sized executive coupes, both Audi and BMW have chosen to position their more sporting offerings as stand-alone to the saloon versions, with the respective A5 and 4-Series. That means a different name and different styling.Mercedes?... Read more

Mercedes GLC first drive: SUVving to consider

Mercedes GLC first drive: SUVving to consider

By Joe Simpson

This is the Mercedes GLC. It's Merc's mid-sized SUV rival to the BMW X3 and Audi Q5. It's a significant car for the brand, because this is the first time Mercedes has had a car of this size, in this class, available in the UK. The old, square-rig GLK... Read more