Six Cars to Watch Out For This Year
While Automologist MAC was shopping around for a new ride, he found time to compile a list of cars that you would want, should want…but probably can’t have.
Late last year, I took the decision to replace two of my trusty rides that had been with me for almost the entirety of a decade each. The two cars in question were the delectable Porsche 911 C4S and my BMW M Sport (E60). Unfortunately, with my growing family and the beginnings of some worrying shake, rattles and roll in both cars, I did the rounds of available alternatives on the Malaysian market. In the process of this, there were six cars that were not quite yet available, but unfortunately outside of my price range, that I will be keeping close watch on when they enter the used car market.
Alfa Romeo Giulia
I will tell any wannabe petrol-head that if you haven’t owned either an Alfa or Lotus, then you can’t really call yourself a petrol-head. The new Guilia is not as new as the others on this list – after all, it was launched in 2015 – but until now it has not been available in my neck of the woods. Now, Alfa has scheduled a launch sometime in the middle of the year and will include the slick as anything Quadrifoglio model, which of course sounds a bit like a cheesy pizza, but is really a reference to an AWD system. The car is super lightweight, featuring all sorts of aluminium parts and carbon fibre bonnet and boot lid as standard; it’s sure to get around the twistys real well.
The outgoing model was firmly on my wish list, but a combination of bad customer service at the dealership and three young boys whose desire was to be seen in a Macan which won the day. This, though, is the second generation A5, which was not on offer when I was doing the rounds. With the sharpened lines and increase in chrome work, don’t be fooled into thinking that this is a mere facelift. There is an all-new powertrain to this beastie, a three-litre turbo-charged V6 monster lurking under the newly sculptured bonnet. The S5 is expected to come equipped with the same twin turbo configuration as deployed in the Panamera S. The new A5 is expected in Asia real soon.
BMW 5 Series
The 5 series is one of my favourite cars of all times; with its almost stately poise but street performance, it really is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. The outgoing F10 model was a marketing success for BMW and outsold the E60 predecessor by more than 42%, partly due to so many 3 Series drivers upgrading to the 5 Series. The new 5 looks set be the next wolf, with its lightweight chassis featuring such exotic mixtures of magnesium and titanium, mated to a number of more powerful yet more efficient engines and updated information/entertainment system. And let’s not forget the new M5 which is supposed to be capable of 0-100 kph in 3.5 seconds.
It looks fast even when it is parked! Closer to the LFA than the good but boring SC, this is a car with true spirit. The company says the car was designed with the driver in mind so I can’t wait to borrow one for a test drive to see if they are telling the truth or, more the point, got it right. With a lowered driving position and better weight distribution, a lighter chassis and a ten-speed auto transmission which is said to rival a dual clutch system, it should be fun. A future legend?
Mercedes AMG E63
Underneath the slightly plain exterior lurks a monster V8 in the AMG version of the salesman travelling office, making it possibly the true owner of the wolf in sheep’s clothing tagline. Developing an eye-watering 612 BHP from the four-litre twin turbo, this car is set to become an urban legend. The styling is subtle but very definitely hairy-chested. And with a nine-speed auto transmission powering all four wheels, getting through the twisty bits will be fun, particularly on the new air-filled dampers. Looks like Mercedes is all grown-up and I can’t wait to see it in the flesh and perhaps blag a drive of one somehow.
Back in 2009 when the Panamera first assaulted us, the motoring press were almost united in slating the looks of the vehicle. The second generation seems to have soften the look and by default muted the cacophony of criticism, and is now looking much more like a four-door 911 than the ugly duckling it once was. This will be the first vehicle produced using the VW Group’s new modular platform technology. Forget the performance on this one, which is of course stellar, it is the inside that really wows, making it truly the best cockpit out there….. I know ’cause I have driven this one. I just couldn’t afford it……