LEXUS LBX … SMALL BUT STYLISH

LBX is the Lexus equivalent of the Toyota Yaris Cross, but is it more than that? With a truncated, low-riding version of the Lexus “spindle” grille, the letters apparently stand for “Lexus Breakthrough X(cross)-over”. It’s a Lexus, yes and a crossover, but we’re not sure what makes it a breakthrough. Sitting below the UX, it is the smallest Lexus to date and only the second model to carry a three-letter name, instead of the usual two letters, after the halo LFA supercar from 2011. L was reportedly added to the… Read more

EXTRA POWER AND FEATURES FOR LATEST BMW M2

BMW Australia has announced details of the updated version of its M2 Coupe due here in the fourth quarter of 2024. The current (second generation) M2 has been on sale since December 2022 and the upgrade brings increased power and torque, new cockpit design, extra paint choices together with equipment and technology enhancements. As before power comes from a straight-six M TwinPower Turbo engine. Power has been increased from 338 to 353kW with torque up from 550 to 600Nm. Advances have been made with throttle mapping and response in all… Read more

HYUNDAI PALISADE IS BIG AND BOLD

Launched here in late 2020, Palisade is the largest model in Hyundai’s SUV range. At a smidgeon under five metres, it’s around the same size and price as competitors such as Kia Sorento, Toyota Kluger, and Mazda CX-90. It’s aimed at those wanting a large vehicle to carry people so leans in the direction of comfort and ease of driving rather than full-on off-road work. An upgrade in June 2023 included a name change with the previous top-spec Highlander now called Calligraphy and a new Calligraphy Black Ink variant added… Read more

IONIQ 5, EV TO THE NTH DEGREE

EV power is the great equaliser, according to Tim Rodgers – big battery, big power, big tyres, zero to 100km/h in less than four seconds – and ultra-fast examples are relatively easy to do. As Hyundai Australia product development manager, he should know. Rodgers spent a year and a half on three continents helping to hone the suspension and systems of the new high performance Ioniq 5 N all-electric vehicle. The absence of ICE limitations and the scope for new technologies was daunting initially. However, it made the development of… Read more

bZ4X CHANCE TO MAKE A NAME FOR ITSELF

What’s in a name? Plenty if you happen to be one of the world’s largest automobile manufacturers pumping out product by the boat load. Take Toyota, for example. Nothing goes better to describe the Land Cruiser as a prestigious go-anywhere off roader; then there’s the Prius, relating to its being the first mass produced petrol / hybrid car. Now comes Toyota’s first wholly electric SUV, the BEV (Battery Electric Vehicle) bZ4X. The what? Surely that’s an internal maker’s code Where’s the snappy showroom moniker? Was the marketing department on leave?… Read more

AUDI Q2 – GOOD THINGS COME IN SMALL PACKAGES

The Q2 is the entry-level model into the Audi’s five-model SUV range sitting below the Q3, Q5, Q7 and Q8. Between them they account for around 80 per cent of the brand’s total Australian sales. First released in late 2017, and upgraded in February 2021, the Q2 now comes in two variants: 1.5-litre 35 TFSI and 2.0-litre quattro 40 TFSI. At the same time a new high-performance SQ2 was added and which will justify a separate review down the track. Priced at $43,600 plus on-roads, the 35 TFSI has LED… Read more

FORD CUTS PRICES ON ITS EV RANGE

Ford Australia has joined the trend towards lower EV prices with cuts to its Mustang Mach-E SUV and E-Transit commercial van. Importantly it brings all Ford fully-electric down below the $100,000 barrier. In the case of the three Mustang variants, it’s the second round of savings following earlier cuts from the pre-launch prices. The entry level Mustang Mach-E Select is now priced at $64,990, down $8000 from the previous price. The Higher-spec Mach-E Premium and GT models each drop by $7000 to $79,990 and $97,990 respectively. The E-Transit van gets… Read more

TOYOTA CROSSES OVER WITH ITS LATEST SUV

After a long period when Toyota’s smallest SUV, the RAV4, grew into a mid-sized model leaving the compact field open to numerous competitors from other brands, it now has three vehicles in contention, Yaris Cross, C-HR and now, the subject of this week’s review, the Corolla Cross. Although it sits on the same platform as the Corolla hatch, the Cross has a totally different body as befitting an SUV. The styling is quite conservative but that’s unlikely to deter the typical Toyota buyer who prefers function over fashion. There are… Read more

IN ESSENCE, THE SHAPE OF THINGS TO COME

It’s all down to striking design and leading-edge aerodynamics, says the Chinese manufacturer of the latest MG4 electric vehicle.that uses the innovative new Modular Scalable Platform that will underpin a new generation of MG EVs. Featuring rear-wheel drive, 50:50 weight distribution and thin battery technology, the MG4 was designed in London and is put together in state-of-the-art plants in several countries. The result is a hatchback that reflects the sporting tradition of the original post-war MGs and points the way for affordable versatile zero emission electric vehicles of the future…. Read more