The Road Ahead : June July 2007
X factor BMW is not taking any chances with the new X5, a vehicle likely to account for one in five 'spinning propeller' sales. Despite being longer, wider and lower, the 2007 version appears much the same as the old vehicle, however BMW hasn't stinted on the interior or high-tech development. Designed to run specifically on four th- generation run-flat tyres, the X5 has a redesigned front-end, unique suspension tune, stiffer body, the option of seven seats and a tweaked, permanent all- wheel-drive system. A space-saver spare is provided. The 3.0-litre diesel and petrol and V8 petrol engines are more power ful yet more efficient, the automatic-only, six- speed gearbox changes faster and the volume-selling diesel weighs the same. IN THE SHOWROOM ... New releases Volvo gets funky Volvo has a cunning plan to excite and entice a new breed of buyer into its showrooms. The new C30 three-door hatch is the spor tiest Volvo yet and, with its distinctive, funky looks, targets trendy young urbanites. The C30 shares many components, including drive-train and basic suspension, with the S40 and V50 models. Offering four seats only, the C30 is initially available in LE and spor ty T5 specifications. The five-speed manual LE is $38,450, while the six-speed manual T5 goes for $42,450. A five speed-auto in either adds $1500. LE models get a 125 kW, 2.4-litre, five-cylinder petrol engine, while the T5 motors with a 162 kW, 2.5-litre, turbo, five-cylinder petrol engine. The range should expand later this year when the base model C30 S ($34,450 manual/$35,950 auto) and five-cylinder diesel C30 D5 models (prices as per T5) arrive. Safety has been advanced with anti- rollover sensors, cruise control with brake function and enhanced braking MOTORING Prices are unchanged. They star t at $62,990 for the Touring manual and reach $73,990 for the roadster versions. Targets in site Korean brand SsangYong has taken aim at two massive markets with its new Actyon off-roader challenging the compact 4x4 stars and the Actyon Spor ts diving into the dual-cab ute ranks. The wagon offers both petrol and diesel power, while Actyon Spor ts is all JUN/JLY 07 61 systems. Prices star t at $85,000 for the 3.0si petrol and $86,800 for the 3.0d. An Executive model with more fruit adds $9500. The flagship V8 4.8i is $118,300. The options list includes more high-tech gizmos than usual. The Bavarians have also wheeled out a new 3 Series Convertible. Available for the first time with a three- piece folding metal roof that stows in 22 seconds, BMW is asking $13,000 extra for conver tible models above coupe equivalents, although specification varies. Conver tibles feature familiar 2.5- litre, inline, six-cylinder or scintillating, 3.0-litre, twin-turbo, direct-injection engines, coupled to six-speed manual or automatic gearboxes. Prices range from $94,900 for a manual 325i to $124,100 for the automatic 335i. One for the sports fans Fans of Nissan's 350Z will be pleased to know that the latest model remains true to its original design. While its exterior remains largely unchanged, restricted to a new 'power bulge' bonnet and wider range of paint colours, under the skin is a fresh, more power ful, engine which pumps out 230 kW and more torque over a wider, flatter, torque cur ve. The model line-up remains the same, with both coupe and roadsters available in either Touring or Track spec, though Track models now only come with manual transmission.
April May 2007
August September 2007