Britain's best half-price heroes uncovered; Toyota GT 86 prototype driven; Land Rover DC100 concept

The great thing about our ‘Half-price heroes’ cover story in the 9 November issue is that it makes you remember just how much desirable metal there is out there for not a great amount of money.

We wrote about a BMW M6 that cost less than a middling-spec new Toyota Avensis. Staff writer Vicky Parrott put her money where her mouth is and bought the very Toyota MR2 we also featured in the article.

But new cars are what we’re mostly about here, and November was a terrific month for those. Finally, we were able to write about driving a Toyota GT 86 prototype, which delivered all the wonderful slidey poise and balance that its maker promised it would.

We wondered, though, if the new BMW 3-series will turn out to be a greater achievement still. I didn’t think it was possible to improve on compact executive cars by the margin that BMW has found with its latest 3-series.

We also drove the new ‘991’ version of the Porsche 911 (“radically different, but still brilliant”) and the next-generation Land Rover Defender. Sort of. The DC100 Sport concept aims to regain the original’s ‘spirit of freedom’, and our Steve Cropley found that it’s off to a very decent start.

Also in November, we attended two motor shows - the Los Angeles motor show and Tokyo motor show - and showed you exciting new metal in the shape of the exciting Subaru BRZ Concept STI (LA), as well as a plethora of wacky Tokyo concepts, the Daihatsu D-X being no exception.

Towards the end of the month, yet another blow was dealt to Saab, this time Saab GB, which took a voluntary decision to go into administration. And following in a similar vein, Mercedes revealed that it would axe its under-performing Maybach brand in 2013.

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