Sometimes you have to go in search of news. It won’t come looking for you. Read on to learn which of their cars Ford UK considers “large”.
Let’s get going! Honda UK announced that the four-door Civic is going to be sold in the UK and that it is made in Turkey. Eager customers must wait until August to get their hands on their own example. A single petrol version with 1.0 litre i-VTEC will vie with the 1.6 litre diesel for sales. The gear ratio race is now up to nine cogs at Honda and you can have such a set-up in either manual or CVT automatic form.
Because the saloon is wider, longer and lower it can take up the demand unsatisfied by the gaping Accord-shaped hole in Honda’s line-up. The payoff is a lot of room inside: “class leading,” claim Honda modestly.
Persist in reading this to find out which marque has the least up-to-date press release. Is it Toyota, Mitsubishi or someone else entirely? Plus, have Ford let the cat out of the bag regarding car sizes?
Toyota is keen to report that Esapekka Lappi piloted and then wrecked a Yaris to complete the sixth round of the FIA WRC in fifth position in Portugal at the weekend. Toyota’s UK Heritage collection is still in development and the teaser panel at the website is still pretty much a blank.
Autocar offered this year’s Issigonis Award to Akio Toyoda, President of Toyota. ”This is our highest accolade and our most prestigious and most personal award. It goes to Mr Toyoda in recognition of the quite incredible job he has done at the helm of Toyota and Lexus. He has been proved right on so many issues and it is inspiring to see him do such diverse things as lead the agenda on future powertrain technologies and bring back cars that appeal to the enthusiast, all while selling a vast amount of ever-more desirable cars,” explained Autocar.
Nissan´s latest bit of news is nothing to do with cars at all: “Nissan today announces the retail launch of its integrated home energy solution, Nissan Energy Solar. UK customers can now optimise the way their properties create, store and consume energy via the use of world-class integrated solar panels, battery storage (xStorage Home) and a home energy management system.”
To be serious, Nissan is serious about seeing EVs as part of an integrated solution as the Nissan Energy Solar package is conceived as part of the energy supply for its EV cars too. Quite conceivably people with little interest in a transport solution may be more likely to turn to Nissan for their next car if they find out how much they can save on both domestic energy costs and transport fuel costs.
How about this: Lexus is adding black trim bits and some black leather plus 18 inch wheels to its NX range, on sale for a year now. The specifications are way too luxurious for me: “Equipment specifications match those of the NX 300h SE and include Lexus Premium Navigation with 10.3-inch display, Lexus
Safety System+, 10-speaker audio system with DAB and single CD player, rain-sensing wipers, eight-way power adjustable heated front seats, reversing camera and dual-zone climate control. A Parking Pack with front and rear parking sensors is available as an accessory option”.
Autocropley give the NX three stars out five: The good news is that it’s not too big, 4.6 metres but weighs a bridge-busting 1900 kg. Autocropley concludes that it is “supremely quiet, strikingly handsome, nicely appointed, typically well equipped and – in hybrid form – efficient, especially in regard to the rising concern about NOx emissions”.
However, it has a choppy ride and costs too much. WhatCar???? reminds us the NX has a 2.5 litre petrol engine and also costs too much. Motor Trend are more forgiving and offer four stars out of five. The picture they paint is of a car that has “confident handling, a well-crafted interior and is efficient. They don’t like the looks or sluggish performance. So, yes, give me some more black bits and black leather, please, to dull the pain.
Mitsubishi’s last bit of news was dated May 14th and tells us that by selling just under 3000 units between January and April, their Outlander is Britain’s most popular PHEV.
Subaru’s main news in that their mix of niche cars is surviving a sales downturn in the UK: “With growth for the safety focused SUV brand, Subaru UK shows positive progress in a competitive new car market which sees the manufacturer grow by 5.5% compared to the first quarter of 2017. This shows a stark contrast to the industry as a whole, as sales fell by 12.4% in the first quarter.”
There were no items of news at Suzuki that I felt worth capturing and bringing back here alive.
With possibly the oldest entry among the marques looked at today, Mazda’s latest item is from February** and simply tells us that drivers still want internal combustion engines. “New Mazda Driver Project research reveals continued support for the development of the internal combustion engine,” it says baldly. Surely they could have offered a snippet about the new LX Eco Ultra Blue-Line trim spec on the Mazda 5?
Infiniti is not far behind with a press release stating that it will be building electric cars in China (the second oldest item from April 19th). The most recent is from April 26th and is too obscure to summarise easily. What is odd about Infiniti’s press portal is that you choose a region e.g the EU and you get a load of non-EU news.
Canada gets a page of its own and the all the countries of the EU also get one page, despite Europe’s pre-eminence as the world’s most important and lovely continent and the one I will be holidaying in for the remainder of my active life. Weird.
The news page which one finds at the UK Infiniti site is equally poor but I did find some juicy vintage Infiniti images (see above). Infiniti have been around for 30 years. Did you know they have six different cars in their UK range? The Q30 costs around twenty thousand pounds which is the same as a Ford Focus (which Ford now calls a large car). While Infiniti might still be a small player, they seem to be quite serious about having a good range of cars and – gulp – the styling is growing on me. I rather like the Q50 very much.
In my next instalment I will go and see what MG is reporting.
** or “back in February” as we must always write. “Back in 1400 it was very common for peasant farmers to…”