If you’re reading this, you will have unwrapped your socks and deodorant gift sets and are possibly settling into a nice Christmas coma, your head and stomach aching with the copious amounts of Prosecco and Quality Street you’ve quaffed and stuffed your face with.
Your mind may also be starting to stray to the dark side, with thoughts of going back to work and returning to a very un-Christmassy world ran by people like Donald Trump. Well, don’t fret. There are still plenty of things to look forward to in 2017, like a plethora of new game changing car releases.
Aston Martin V8 Vantage
There might not be a new Bond film due until 2018, but that hasn’t stopped Aston Martin doing what they do best, make cars that beg to be put on the silver screen. 2016 was a huge year for Aston Martin, with Mercedes-AMG investing in the company, and it’s the same 4.0-litre V8 used across the Mercedes-AMG range that is expected to help the new Vantage produce bhp at around the 500 mark and acceleration of 0-62mph in around 4 seconds. Sex on wheels.
Hyundai i30 N
Ok, let us come back down to reality for a second. It’s unlikely that most of us will be driving around in a Vantage, unless I’ve grossly misjudged my audience and you’re all reading this from the comfort of your castles. That’s not to say we don’t all like driving around in something nice. With this in mind, many marques are readying their souped-up hatch backs for your indulgence. Like the Hyundai i30 N, which takes the already solid i30 and adds a 260bhp turbocharged petrol engine and upgraded stylings. Other hot hatches will include the new Kia GT and Renault Megane RS. Test drives please.
I guess we’d all like to be a little greener when it comes to our cars, as well as save as much as we can on fuel? It’s why Nissan continues to sell lots of it electric Leafs, with over 75,000 units shifted across Europe since its launch. However, as the current model has been on our roads since 2010, Europe’s most popular electric car has since fallen behind current technological advancements. Enter the new 2017 Leaf, which comes complete with a 30 kWh battery pack – introduced for the 2016 model year – now across all trim levels. There has even been talk of Nissan introducing a 60 kWh battery pack later down the line to help finally shut up the EV sceptics.
BMW 5 Series
BMW is busy over the next two years, with a series of SUVs and saloons revving their engines ready for launch. Among them is the mighty seventh generation 5 Series. Weighing up to 100kg less thanks to a generous use of aluminium, the new 5 Series has all the luxury you would expect but with added autonomous driving features such as Lane Keeping Assist and Active Cruise Control, while a 530e plug-in hybrid version is claiming to give you over 140mpg and emit just 46g/km of Co2. All of this suggests that the new 5 Series could become an automatic company car of choice. Also, it could very well be one of the most beautiful saloons ever made. I would marry it if it was legal and not really weird.
This beautiful and powerful range of hatchbacks get even better next year, with the new Golf sporting luxurious touches right across the range, like LED headlamps and a more streamlined front and rear. Volkswagen is also showing its technological clout inside the car, with gesture control technology and an optional Active Info Display with 12.3in high-definition monitor. Traffic Jam Assist, Emergency Assist, Lane Assist. If you’re driving the new Golf you’re definitely going to be assisted. It’s a Golf, only better. GTI, GTE, GTD, R, they’re all amazing. Happy New Year!