Looking to get yourself a new set of wheels this year? You’re going to have a mass of options to choose from; whether you’ve got your sights set on a veld-smashing SUV or a city-cruising coupe. We’re going to take a look at the automobile releases heading to SA that are most likely to turn some heads.
A Toyota Corolla? The ultimate aspiration car for those that frequent retirement homes, right? Not if Toyota’s new styling has anything to say about it. We’ve seen a lot of brands completely revamp more conservative models, and it seems like Toyota is undergoing a similar process with the Corolla. Boring and frumpy may have been terms you’d associate with it before, but that’s going to be a distant memory after 2019’s sleek and sporty new Corolla hits the road.
BMW 8 Series
Old-school BMW fans might remember the E31 8-series coupe; it had an extremely elongated and low-slung silhouette that looked like nothing else on the road. That 8-series label is about to make a comeback, with the same languid lines carving out a striking shape. South Africa will see the release of the 850i to start with, and for the summer fans, there will be a drop-top version as well.
Limousine sized super-SUVs have become a bit of a trend lately, starting way back when by Porsche’s Cayenne first hit the road, and now being enthusiastically jumped on by just about every manufacturer out there. Audi’s throwing their hat into the ring with the Q8 this year, initially with a 213kW turbodiesel with a semi-hybrid engine configuration paired to an 8-speed tiptronic gearbox. This drivetrain setup will haul its substantial mass to 100km/h in a shade over 6 seconds, which is quite impressive. Additional engine options are expected to be revealed throughout the year as well.
‘Pista’ means ‘track’, so speed-fiends should have no doubt as to what the purpose of this edition of the famed 488 has in mind, and it’s not leisurely cruises down the Riviera. It’s fitted with the most powerful V8 that Ferrari has produced to date: a 4-litre biturbo that can grind out 530kW, all nestled in a very sparse 1280kg body. That’s sufficient to get this thing from 0-100 in under three seconds, and from 0-200 in 7.5 – topping out at 340km/h. There are super cars, and then there are super cars.
Ford Ranger Raptor
Ford’s Ranger series has been a runaway hit in the South African bakkie segment, so their decision to bring a performance-oriented version here doesn’t seem all that surprising – it’s probably going to be an immense success. It’s going to be the first Ford to use their new 157kW 2-litre twin-turbo diesel, which is interestingly paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission. This same drive-train combination is also likely find its way to other models in Ford’s SUV lineup, particularly the Everest.
If you had to splurge out on any of these, which one would you be taking home? We wouldn’t say no to a new 8-series, our bet is that it’s going to be one of 2019’s hottest sellers. Let us know by tweeting @MenStuffZA and commenting below.