This week: Mini’s SUV-led expansion detailed, Morgan Plus Four driven, exclusive secrets of the Dyson EV and much more
3 June 2020

What happened? Why was it axed? And would it have been any good?

The questions swirl around the Dyson EV and, now, in a world exclusive, Autocar can reveal the inside story of the pioneering electric vehicle that never was. 

We meet the car's creator, Sir James Dyson, for an exclusive interview and also gain unprecedented access to the car’s prototypes and creators at Dyson’s R&D base.

Trust us, you don't want to miss this - only in this week's Autocar.

ALSO IN THIS ISSUE

There’s nothing mini about Mini’s growth plans. In this week’s issue, we preview two all-new SUVs the British marque is plotting to spearhead its planned expansion. An electric BMW X1-sized SUV will lead the charge, alongside a piston-engined model, as the brand plots its biggest shake-up since BMW assumed ownership in 2001.

Speaking of BMW, this week’s mag also lifts the lid on the bold new 4 Series. We’ve got all the details of the dramatically restyled coupé.

Elsewhere, Porsche reveals the first of four retro 911s as the German firm begins expanding its bespoke division, Mercedes makes headway on the new GLA 250e plug-in hybrid, and the Mercedes-Benz GLC is spied for the first time.

In our analysis section, we take a look at Aston Martin’s prospects under new CEO Tobias Moers, who will replace Andy Palmer from August. We also explore Volvo’s new 112mph speed limit that it’s introduced to its cars. Given safety seems unlikely to be substantially reduced, why is the Swedish brand doing this? We chat to Malin Ekholm, head of the Volvo Cars Safety Centre, to find out.

Finally, our newly introduced Autocar Business segment analyses the future of the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, which is undergoing a radical restructure following the fall of Carlos Ghosn.

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Mini Cooper S Works 210

Mini splits the difference between Cooper S and John Cooper Works, and what a revelation it is

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Reviews

Can Morgan’s new-era Plus Four and its BMW-sourced 255bhp four-cylinder turbo petrol engine really justify a £63,000 outlay? That’s the question we’re asking in the first of this week’s drives.

Then it’s the turn of the Porsche 911 Turbo S to face the testers as the top-billing 911 arrives in Britain with buckets of power and a price tag to match, and the Toyota Corolla Trek is put through its paces, both on the tarmac and off-road.

The Mercedes CLA Shooting Brake promises glamour and practicality, but though it’s certainly sleek, can it improve upon the firm-riding first-gen car?

Speaking of slick cars, it’s now time to turn to the BMW M8 and the subject of this week’s road test. Power. Check. Tech. Yep, there’s plenty to satisfy nerds. It’s the £150,000 asking price that raises questions - read the full test to find out if the M8 has the answers.

Finally, we wind back the clock to 2009, when a young Matt Prior had a date with the Noble M600, the hand-built maverick from Leicester that went faster than a McLaren F1.

Features

Elsewhere, Steve Cropley planned to drive four Bentleys – saloon, SUV, convertible and coupé – to the Geneva motor show. But coronavirus put paid to all that, so he was taken on a very different trip, instead.

Next, we shoot the breeze with speed king Richard Noble. Once the fastest man on earth, the Thrust 2 speed record car driver tells Steve Cropley all about his new book.

Motorsport now, and this week’s segment kicks off with an interview with touring car driver Andrew Jordan. Meanwhile, James Attwood rounds up the top five dramatic Le Mans finishes, we ask if guesting in the European Championship could fix the WRC’s ailing calendar, and, for our feature piece, we investigate what will surely be one of the most radical motorsport events next year, Extreme E (an off-road race series for electric super-SUVs).

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Opinions

Steve Cropley hasn’t lost his jones for chasing a big scoop - in his column this week he thrills about the pleasures of interviewing James Dyson and finally getting the lowdown on the mysterious mega-EV from Malmesbury. Our columnist also weighs in on the sad news that Andy Palmer will be replaced as CEO of Aston Martin, and soldiers on with his Lego Defender. Meanwhile, Matt Prior’s column contains the words ‘Dominic Cummings’ and ‘Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh’. But don’t worry - he’s talking about Land Rovers, not politics.

Deals

The inevitability of aging is the subject of James Ruppert’s used car section. Knee problems have pushed one plucky reader towards an SUV. What second-hand cars are good options?

Elsewhere, we shine a light on the Seat Ateca in our nearly new buying guide, which offers SUV practicality in a package that pleases driving enthusiasts, before Felix Page shows you how to buy a Vauxhall Calibra. But be quick, because this sharp-suited classic is tipped to rise in value.

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Comments
9

5 April 2018

As usual, this week's edition (dated 04APR2018), is a very good read, and well worth the investment. The road test of the eighth generation of Roll-Royce Phantom - with its "mahogany panelling" - illustrates that moneyed wealth, should NOT be confused with good-taste!

The sales pitch for next week's issue (to be dated 11APR2018), whets our appetite with the Used Buying Guide  . . .  "Mercedes-Benz CLS. Can't afford the new one? Then read our guide to Merc's original style icon".

The original CLS certainly was a style icon, with all the svelte elegance of a Parisian - or Italian - chic designer item.

That streamlined elegance was lost when the original's "facelift" incorporated the bluff, Teutonic, more upright, corporate Mercedes radiator grill.

The new, current, incarnation of the CLS (page 29, of this week's magazine), shares all the style, delicacy, and substantial "presence" of a rugby prop forward!  It is not a case of "Can not  AFFORD  the new CLS?".  More a question of why would anyone wish to purchase such a vulgar and brutish vehicle?

It is (again) a reminder that the ownership of wealth, is NOT the same as the possession of good taste.

RCT(V)

 

 

 

 

289

18 July 2018

....totally agree!

19 July 2018

Why the GT2 RS isn't  a five-star Porsche?

Well, according to the German car magazine Sportauto the McLaren 720 S is the better supercar.

The 720 S is razor sharp and yet poised, while the GT2 RS is a bit unhinged.

22 July 2018

Good overall read this week, except for the iPace vs Tesla review, which is a biased storyline developed clearly ahead of the cars being reviewed.  Essentially, the premise looks to convey an analogy between two passenger jets and how the second to market - the Boeing 707 - went on to lead it. Unfortunately, much like his story, he apply's 20th century motoring thinking to a 21st century ownership problem. In other words, he clearly doesn't get what the shft to electric is about. Not only that, many of the facts are just incorrect, like 0-60 time that amongst the others if they had been published correctly, would make the reader question how the author could possibly have reached such a conclusion. This disregards the fact that the iPace is better compared with the Model 3 (same size). Not only that, but the test cars were over 25% apart on costs - with the iPace being more expensive. Really dissappointing journalism. 

8 August 2018

Oh good... Another JLR product takes the cover spot.  Must be at least an issue or two since the last one. 

8 August 2018

Oh good... Another JLR product takes the cover spot.  Must be at least an issue or two since the last one. 

3 September 2018

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26 September 2018

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24 October 2018

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