RAC Cars News


The hottest new cars for 2016

By raccars Published

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As 2015 draws to a close, it becomes clear that the hottest new cars in 2016 will be SUVs, with new luxury 4x4s taking all the headlines.

However there is some other interesting new metal on the horizon for the forthcoming year. If you're planning to buy new next year, what's worth waiting for?

Jaguar F-Pace

Driving the luxury SUV rush is Jaguar's first entry into the sector. Despite the uninspiring name, the F-Pace has generated a huge amount of automotive press and public anticipation. It hits the streets in April, priced from £34,170, with unmistakeably Jaguar styling on a substantial but sleek SUV body. Gadgets include remote control heating, Apple Watch compatibility and an integrated Wi-Fi hotspot. The F-Pace boasts an economical range of engines including a 2.0 litre diesel with rear wheel drive, a punchy diesel V6, with a supercharged 3.0 litre petrol unit at the top of the range. While the F-Pace is an SUV, Jaguar's focus has been on-road refinement rather than off-road agility to avoid diluting sales from its corporate stablemate, Land Rover.

Tesla Model X

After creating a sensation with its Model S hybrid sports car, Tesla has also turned its clean and green hand to an SUV, with the Model X due in spring. With 762bhp, the top of the range all electric model will be capable of reaching 60mph in 3.2 seconds, making it the fastest SUV in the world. Tesla is also promising a range of 267 miles, along with seven comfortable seats inside and distinctive 'falcon wing' doors to the rear.

Seat SUV

At the more affordable end of the market, Seat will be the next brand to challenge the Nissan Qashqai's dominance with its first, as yet unnamed SUV sometime in 2016. The 20v20 concept shown at this year's Geneva Motor Show gives a good idea as to what to expect, albeit in slightly smaller form, with powertrains shared with the VW Tiguan. Rumour has it that Seat is also planning a hot Cupra version. Prices have yet to be announced but should be in the region of £22,000.

Non-SUV new cars

Fiat 124 Spider

It might have started life as an Alfa Romeo Spider, but now wears a Fiat badge and an old Fiat name. The 124 Spider, a joint venture with the Mazda MX-5, is due out by the end of summer 2016 with prices starting from £20,000 - and it looks fabulous. Under the bonnet there's a Fiat MultiAir 1.4 litre turbo tuned to distribute its power evenly across the rev range, accompanied by a sharp moving six speed manual transmission. With stunning Italian looks, a lightweight body and rear wheel drive, it promises as much style as substance and some rather retro driving entertainment.

Ford Focus RS

The third generation Focus RS is a beast! It will be unleashed next year with prices starting at less than £30,000, for which you get four wheel drive for the first time, 316bhp and the sharpest handling yet. A dual clutch system has got rid of that nasty understeer and makes the RS a match for the Mercedes-Benz A45 AMG and Audi RS3 for sheer driver entertainment. It's got the looks to match too, with an unashamedly boy racer-pleasing body kit and a racy interior. This is the most exciting car to wear the blue oval badge for a long time.

Toyota Mirai

For the first time in the UK, the much talked-about hydrogen fuel cell technology will become a commercial reality with the Mirai, due early next year and said to offer a 300 mile range from a tank of hydrogen, with only water vapour emissions. While this is the holy grail of environmentally friendly motoring, buyers will need to think seriously about the hydrogen refuelling situation before investing. Prices are yet to be announced.

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