2017 Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid Arrives in Europe – The Prius Prime is an all-new plug-in hybrid that replaces the previous Prius Plug-in. Compared to its predecessor, the 2017 Prius Prime is more efficient, features new tech, and can travel longer distances on all-electric power thanks to a larger lithium-ion battery, with twice the capacity of the previous model.
The 2017 Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid sits atop the Prius family. Although similar in size to the standard Prius, the Prius Prime only accommodates four passengers in order to make room for the larger battery that provides the hybrid’s expected all-electric range of 22 miles.
While the 2017 Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid has been an international success ever since its inception, the same can’t be said about its more recent plug in hybrid version – though its new generation might change the figures.
For starters, the 2017 Prius Plug-In Hybrid is able to go for “over 50 kilometers,” on electric power alone at a maximum speed of up to 135 km/h – that’s double the preceding generation’s range and a substantial increase from its 85 km/h.
With its combination of space and efficiency, the Prius is quite compelling—in our experience, 46 mpg is achievable, even at 75-mph speeds. In the fun-to-drive department, though, it falls short, and the brakes feel vague. The cabin is mostly quiet, but the tires clomp loudly over broken roads. The seats are comfortable; fold down the rear ones for 66 cu ft of cargo room. A responsive touchscreen controls the infotainment system. The Prius Eco model rates at 58 mpg city and 53 mpg highway.
More article : 2017 Honda Civic Type R in Paris Motor Show
With better credentials comes even better technology – and this might be the secret to success, as it would be able to justify the price hike over the regular Prius. Speaking of, the new Prius Plug-In Hybrid costs 37,550 in Germany and £36,395 in the UK, and comes with a new battery as well as the new Dual Motor Drive System.
The pack now has a capacity of 8.8 kWh, while the hybrid powertrain gets a one-way gear within the transaxle – allowing the generator to effectively become a second electric motor when needed.
With the TNGA platform at its disposal, the new 2017 Toyota Prius Plug-In Hybrid has a 60 percent increased body rigidity, as well as a standard Toyota Safety Sense with automatic emergency braking, pedestrian detection, and lane departure warning with steering control. There’s also an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system, a head-up display and two 4.2-inch TFT instrument cluster screens.
Mercedes-AMG E63 – Nobody really needs an estate car with 603bhp that can do 0-62mph in 3.5sec, do they? Happily, Mercedes-AMG has built one anyway, and if it’s anything like the new E63 saloon it’s based on, that’s reason to celebrate.
The E63 wagon, or the Mercedes-AMG E63 4Matic+ Estate to give it its full gobstopping title, uses the same 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8 as the E63 saloon, with cylinder deactivation tech to save fuel and cut emissions when you’re not in a hurry.
Like the E63 saloon, the estate drives all four wheels to give it a fighting chance of deploying all that power without tying itself in knots. The rear wheels are permanently driven, while an electronically controlled coupling brings the fronts into play when called for.
Both the base E63 Estate and the more expensive, more lavishly engineered S version use the same engine and nine-speed automatic gearbox, but with a big difference in power output.
Base Mercedes-AMG E63 Estate:
Mercedes-AMG E63 S Estate
Top speed of both models is limited to the usual 155mph as standard, although speccing the optional AMG Driver’s package lifts it to 180mph. In an estate!
Other upgrades the S enjoys over the boggo E63 include:
An extra ‘Race’ mode for the powertrain, steering, stability control and suspension (both versions are fitted with air suspension and adaptive dampers as standard)
Dynamic engine mounts
What about the being an estate car bit? How much flatpack can it pack?
See our regular E-class Estate review for details, but in short, quite a bit.
The rear seat backs can be tilted 10 degrees steeper to free up another 30 litres of boot volume, or folded down entirely in a 40:20:40 split via remote electric switches.
Seats up there’s an echoic 640 litres of bootspace, and 1820 litres with them down – more than 5-series, V90 and A6 Avant.
We’ll see the new Mercedes-AMG E63 Estate for the first time at the 2017 Geneva motor show in March, before it goes on sale in April 2017. First deliveries are scheduled to start from June.
Expect a premium of a couple of thousand pounds for the estate over the E63 saloon’s £78,385 starting point (and £87,745 for the S).
2017 Honda Civic Type R – Buyers hanging out for the all-new 2017 Honda Civic Type R get their first look at its styling today, with the debut of a hot ‘prototype’ version at this week’s Paris motor show.
It was only a little over a year ago that Honda revealed its latest Civic Type R, some four years after the debut of its ninth-generation Civic hatch donor. Honda won’t be making that mistake again, however, with this all-new model set to hit showrooms in the next year.
And, while the current record-setting model was ruled out for Australia, the coming new-generation Civic Type R is a lock for our market.
On the styling front, the ‘prototype’ concept builds on the look of the regular Civic hatch upon which it’s based, while adding elements from the hatch concept revealed in March.
The 2017 Honda Civic Type R concept’s bumpers are remarkably similar to those of the regular hatch, which says a good deal about Honda’s bid to give the core Civic hatch models a racier look.
The concept’s bumpers gain additional ducting, however, along with a sharp carbon-fibre lip along the lower edge and around the side of the car.
The familiar red-backed H and Type R badges dominate the snout, and a turbo intercooler intake in the bonnet rounds out the front-end looks.
Through the profile, the hot-hatch concept gets flared guards with a more integrated, less ‘tacked on’ look, although the rear flares are more plainly added.
At the rear, a set of large centre-mounted exhaust tips rest below a small diffuser, while the requisite 2017 Honda Civic Type R wing dominates the deck.
Technical details are still to come, although the new 2017 Honda Civic Type R is expected to be powered by the current model’s 2.0-litre turbocharged engine, possibly building on the existing 231kW and 400Nm figures.
A front-wheel drive setup is also expected to continue, and, given the young age of the current model, much of its mechanicals will likely transfer to the new model.
Expect a significant overhaul, though, driven by the experience gained with the current Honda Civic Type R car.
Watch for more on the 2017 Honda Civic Type R concept to surface in the coming hours as the press days for the 2016 Paris motor show kick off.
2017 BMW 4 Series, M4 Update Revealed – The facelifted 2017 BMW 4 Series and M4 lines have been revealed this week, bringing a fresh look and updated infotainment systems to the Bavarian company’s popular coupe and convertible range.
While it may not look too different from the car currently on sale, the updated 2017 BMW 4 Series picks up new bi-LED headlights, LED tail-lights and LED fog lights – similar to those on the revised 3 Series – updated bumpers, new exterior and interior colour options and new alloy wheel designs.
Snapper Rocks Blue and Sunset Orange (pictured) are new and exclusive to the 2017 BMW 4 Series range.
Inside, the 2017 BMW 4 Series is endowed with updated trims, including lashings of chrome, double-stitching on the instrument panel, three new upholstery colours and three new interior trim options.
There is a new Navigation Professional system which features a redesigned interface similar to that in the new 5 Series, with customisable tile-style menus that are said to be easier to use.
Also available is the Multifunctional Instrument Display, which is a digital driver’s instrument cluster that can be customised depending on the selected driving mode.
BMW has also revised the suspension of the 2017 BMW 4 Series in this update, which is now stiffer compared to the outgoing model. The company says the new tune delivers sportier handling without sacrificing ride comfort, with adjustments made to both the standard suspension and M Sport suspension packages.
As before, the 2017 BMW 4 Series range is available (in Europe at least) with a range of turbocharged four- and six-cylinder petrol and diesel engines, with the option of rear-wheel drive or xDrive all-wheel drive.
The European market is offered a total of 31 model and powertrain variants in the 4 Series range, though it’s likely Australia’s line-up will largely mirror the current model.
BMW has also updated the hardcore M4, which gains the same full-LED head- and tail-light treatments, along with new cabin elements and the updated infotainment system available in the wider 4 Series range.
In the official images it appears the BMW M4 receives the star-spoke alloy wheels from the current Competition Package variant as standard, though BMW has not confirmed whether the 3.0-litre twin-turbo six gets any power bumps over the current 317kW/550Nm tune of the current ‘standard’ version.
BMW’s local arm has confirmed it expects the updated 4 Series range to arrive Down Under in the second half of 2017, though can’t provide any further details.
Expect full pricing and specifications closer to launch, so stay tuned for an update.
New 2017 Porsche 991.2 GTS Revealed – The Carrera GTS version of the old, naturally aspirated 991-type Porsche 911 was a bit of a sweet spot in the range: some the choicest bits of the options list fitted as standard, and a smattering of black-coloured exterior trim tweaks to let Carrera S owners know they’d been outspent.
Now it’s the updated, turbocharged 991.2’s turn to get a New 2017 Porsche 991.2 GTS version of its own, and it follows the same template.
In the tail there’s the same 3.0-litre twin-turbo flat-six introduced in the 991.2 Carrera S, but with a 30bhp power increase bringing the total to 444bhp. That’s around 20bhp more than the old naturally aspirated New 2017 Porsche 991.2 GTS.
New 2017 Porsche 991.2 GTS have maximum torque of 406lb ft is spread usefully broadly between 2150rpm and 5500rpm.
Electronically controlled ‘PASM’ (Porsche Active Suspension Management) shock absorbers, usually an option at extra cost, are fitted as standard in conjunction with a 10mm drop in ride height.
A package which includes various dynamic upgrades. Among them, there’s a nicer steering wheel, with a dial to select extra driving modes for the power steering, transmission (on PDK cars) and the aforementioned dampers. Pressing the centre of the dial selects ‘Sport Response mode’, programming the quickest possible reaction from the powertrain for around 20sec – a kind of temporary ‘boost’ button.
Also part of the Chrono pack are dynamic engine mounts (actuated by electromagnets to reduce vibration during normal driving but stiffen up when the car is being driven more aggressively), a launch control function in PDK cars, and a digital stopwatch on the dash to help check your sector times on the commute.
Smoked tail-lights, black tailpipes and 20in centre-lock alloys continue the now-traditional black styling theme for New 2017 Porsche 991.2 GTS models.
Both rwd and awd GTS models are available but, regardless of how many wheels are driven, all New 2017 Porsche 991.2 GTS variants get the wider-track body designed for the all-wheel-drive 991.
All three 911 bodystyles are available in GTS form, with a choice of either seven-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch PDK gearboxes across the range.
The manual 2wd Carrera GTS Coupe is – relatively speaking – the most affordable version, at £94,316 (and probably the pick of the bunch full stop). That’s around £8500 more than a regular Carrera S.
The Carrera 4 GTS Coupe jumps to a whisker under £100k, but it’s quickest off the mark, hitting 62mph in 3.6sec if specced with a PDK ’box. The manual coupe is fastest flat-out, at 194mph.
Interestingly, Porsche has priced the Carrera 4 Cabrio GTS and the Targa 4 GTS identically to the nearest pound, at £108,144.
The New 2017 Porsche 991.2 GTS is available to order now, and deliveries start in March.