Mazda’s CX-7 seeks new 4×4 niche
Mazda is introducing a crossover 4×4 to its line-up this September.
The new CX-7, which is already on sale in the USA and Japan, will be available in the UK in a single, well-equipped trim level, priced from £23,960. Standard kit includes a BOSE surround sound stereo, leather seats, electronic stability control (ESC), and alloy wheels.
What’s most unusual about the CX-7, given current buyer ambiguity about the environmental friendliness of 4x4s, is that Mazda is positioning it as a high-performance vehicle. The only engine option is a 2.3-litre turbo petrol – which means 0-62mph in 8.0 seconds but only 27.7 combined mpg. The CX-7 is available to pre-order now.
Volvo adds environmental engines
Volvo has announced new engines for its C70, V70, and S80 car ranges. The C70 gains a four-cylinder option for the first time with the introduction of a 2.0-litre diesel option. It’s the same 134bhp unit used in the C30, S40, and V50 models, and will become the C70’s entry-level diesel, with prices starting at £26,000 for the C70 2.0D S.
The V70 and S80 are both getting a new 2.0-litre FlexiFuel engine, designed to run on environmentally friendly E85 bio-ethanol. Ordinary petrol is fine when this isn’t available, however.
Prices for the FlexiFuel cars will be announced nearer launch, which is scheduled for autumn. The C70 D 2.0 is available to order now, with deliveries starting in September.
Market watch – new and used deals
If you’re after a good discount on a brand-new car, Vauxhall often makes a sensible choice – especially from an internet car supermarket. And with the summer months usually proving quiet for the motor trade, now is the time to buy. We found substantial discounts on a range of Vauxhalls – though particularly the Astra and Vectra – at both Online Cars (www.onlinecarslimited.com) and BestPriceCar (www.bestpricecar.com), including diesel models. Happy to buy used? Then depreciation means you’ll be able to save even more.
Fancy something a little sportier? Drive The Deal (www.drivethedeal.com) has four unregistered Mazda RX-8s available, three priced at £20,084, one (without metallic paint) at £19,808. They are all the range-topping 228bhp model so that’s a saving of around £5,000.
Prefer four-wheel drive and a turbocharger? Then try Motorpoint (www.motorpoint.co.uk), which is offering a £6,000 discount on the outgoing Subaru Impreza 2.5 WRX. That makes the on-the-road price £13,999 – with free metallic paint and delivery. Limited to the first 50 customers only.
Ford joins the 4×4-set with all new Kuga
Ford has unveiled the first official design sketch of its new Kuga compact 4×4.
Set to rival other more ‘lifestyle’ orientated 4x4s – such as Nissan’s Murano and the Mazda CX-7 – the Kuga production car will get its first public outing at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September, ahead of its launch early in spring 2008. The design is influenced by the 2006 Iosis X concept model, but also bears a close family resemblance to existing Ford models – particularly the sporty S-Max MPV.
Although Ford is very late getting its own-brand 4×4 to market, the form shown by other recent introductions – especially the S-Max itself – suggests it could well be worth the wait.
Three-door Cee’d shows Kia’s sporting intent
Kia has released pictures of the three-door version of its Cee’d hatchback, before officially unveiling it at September’s Frankfurt Motor Show. The new car will be badged Pro-cee’d, after the original concept model, and will offer a much sportier driving experience than the current five-door version.
The Cee’d is by-far Kia’s best model, and has shown the Korean carmaker is capable of competing on level terms with European and Japanese rivals; its industry-leading seven-year warranty is expected to be extended to the Pro_cee’d.
Production starts in November, and the car will be in showrooms early in 2008. A Cee’d ‘SW’ estate is also on the way, and a convertible is being considered.
Mitsubishi ‘Five-Star’ Sale
Mitsubishi is having a ‘Five Star’ sale – offering five of its most popular models at a discounted price until the end of September.
Both three-door and five-door versions of the Colt CZ1 1.1 supermini are reduced £500 to £6,999 and £7,499 respectively. The 1.5 Colt CZC convertible is reduced £1,000 to £12,999. The Grandis 2.0 diesel classic MPV is reduced £1,700 to £17,999. The Shogun Sport 2.5 diesel Trojan off-roader is reduced £3,000 to £17,599. And finally, the L200 2.5 diesel Elegance pick-up is reduced £1,500 to £18,639 – but since it’s classified as a commercial vehicle this price doesn’t include VAT.
Don’t forget – with such manufacturer-backed discounts, the dealer still has his own margin to play with – so haggle down from the discounted price to take a slice of that, too.
Mitsubishi is also offering 37,000 miles/three-years free servicing on the Lancer Evo IX until the end of September, as well as various finance deals across the range.
Want to know more?
Don’t forget, for up-to-the minute details of new and used cars, and current selling prices, all Which? members can log into the Car Buying Guide. There, you will also find our in-depth test-drive reports and reliability information on hundreds of different models.