I know it’s not the beginning of 2013, we are actually in the second half of 2013. Time flies and so does the new models of cars for sale. Some look very interesting and some are boring. But here is a list of 5 cars to keep an eye out for.
Audi RS4 Avant
About six years ago (give or take a year on account of bad memory) I had the opportunity to drive an Audi RS4. I was not looking for an Audi RS4 for sale, so it wasn’t a test drive. A client my father had bought himself one because he test drove it and completely fell in love with the high tech car, for various reasons. It was a sad day when we thought we would not be getting an Audi RS4 anymore. But the RS4 is back and the Avant is the upgraded model you have been looking for. Powered by a 4.2-litre V8, its like a sprinter that can’t wait to get out of the blocks – 0 -100km in 4.7 seconds. I’m not a fan of the “station wagon” look, but hot dog the Avant doesn’t handle anything like any RS4 I have ever driven. It’s tight, it’s controlled and it’s fast, very fast. It’s so fun to drive that it makes your forget about R1.4 million price tag, that is until you want to buy an Audi RS4 Avant of your own.
You might have seen a few of the new Mercedes-Benz A-Class driving around already. It’s a clear change from the previous models of the A-Class. The A-Class Mercedes-Benz is now a hatchback and it’s a clear move by the legendary german car company to take a slice of the hatchback pie. The new A-Class comes in 4 different models: a 1.6 that comes with 90kW or 115kW, the petrol 2.0 has a GTI-matching 155kW and the two diesels (1.5 and 1.8 litres) both produce 80kW. All in all these not so little hatchbacks all move. The 2.0 is the most fun for obvious reasons. If you are planning on buying a new Mercedes-Benz A-Class I would suggest you go with the 2.0 with the sports tag, or the 1.8 diesel A-Class is also a great choice.
Opel Astra OPC
The Opel Astra has always been a fun car to own. If you wanted a hot hatchback you would buy an Opel Astra or a Golf GTI. And if I have to be honest, second to the new Merc A-Class I would probably choose the new Opel Astra OPC.
The 2013 Astra OPC comes boasting with a 2.0 liter engine that gets it from 0-100km/h in 5.9 seconds. Damn quick for a hatch. Unfortunately it is still a front wheel drive car and it can be hard to get the power from the engine onto the road through the wheels. Like it’s predecessors the new Astra has some traction issues. This can make it feel like you have to fight the car when you are pushing it. It is fun for some experienced drivers, but can becoming annoying in the long run.
That being said, there is a clear improvement in traction thanks to a new steering system. Also the OPC comes with a lower and stiffer suspension and that means so it constantly looks like it is about to start running. Ad to that the Aero kit with it’s rear spoiler and those 20 inch wheels and you have one racing looking Opel Astra.
I’m going to be honest, I’m a bit obsessed with the Mercedes-Benz E-Class. Not because I’m a huge fan of massively expensive sedans, but because the E-Class is always like a peek through a black hole into the future. The Merceds-Benz E-Class is known as the car that will show you what technology will be in all cars a few years down the line.
The 2013 Mercedes-Benz E-Class has reworked driving aids that now picks up not only other cars on the road but also pedestrians. Adaptive highbeams let you drive with your “brights” on without blinding oncoming traffic. The new E-Class also reads speed-limit signs and overtaking restrictions and where they end.
If a luxury sedan is what you are looking for buy a Mercedes-Benz E-Class. And the new E-Class is available as a estate, coupé and convertible.
Renault Clio RS
The new Renault Clio has taken a huge leap as far as looks go. It’s hard to make a hot hatch look bad, but the new Clio RS is a beautiful car. It looks sleek and modern, but keeps it classy at the same time. And under the hood the turbocharged 1.6 liter engine pushes out 147kW at 6000rpm and 215Nm at 5400rpm.
This is what a hot hatch is all about, fun is a small sized car. And if it is fun you are looking for the Renault Clio RS is a great way to go. Even when driven hard it is economic, the average fuel economy is 6.2 l/100km. Not bad for an engine that has a turbo attached.
The new six-speed gearbox can be controlled from behind the steering wheel by tapping flappy paddles. Not my favourite way to change gears, but at least the gearbox is responsive. The gearbox has three settings that will help you get to that 150 millisecond gear changes in ‘race’ mode. Unfortuanitly Renault had to attach a silly function that simulates the sound of iconic cars through the RS speakers. That might be one step too far.