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Carbuyer magazine

Carbuyer magazine

Issue 19

CarBuyer helps you decide which new car to buy, with expert car reviews, car news, helpful buying guides and detailed video test drives.

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United Kingdom
Autovia Limited
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4 Issues

in this issue

2 min
audi a3 sportback

FOR its fourth outing, the notoriously conservative Audi A3 has a bolder, more exciting exterior design that changes quite markedly depending on which trim level you choose. The entry-level Technik is relatively sedate, while the S line adds a sporty bodykit and sharp LED lighting. There isn’t a three-door anymore, so this five-door Sportback was offered initially and has now been joined by a four-door saloon. The interior is similarly striking, with analogue dials replaced by a standard Virtual Cockpit instrument display, and every A3 comes with a 10.1-inch infotainment screen. Rather than sitting atop the dash, this is now integrated into the centre console, and the driver has a more cocoon-like seating position than before. Quality is excellent, even in versions that now use upholstery manufactured from recycled plastic bottles,…

2 min
audi q5

MUCH has changed in the SUV market since the Q5 first arrived in 2011 but the improvements made to the second-generation model ensure it can still compete. Occupants will welcome the smoother ride, while improved fuel economy promises lower running costs. There are three engines to choose from. You can have a 2.0-litre 45 TFSI petrol with 242bhp or a similarly sized diesel, called 40 TDI, that produces 189bhp. Recently added are the ‘TFSI e’ plug-in hybrids, which promise 26 miles of zero-emissions running. All cars have a seven-speed S tronic automatic gearbox and quattro four-wheel drive, and performance is surprisingly rapid. This Q5 has a more comfortable ride than before but choosing smaller wheels adds extra cushioning. The interior is comfortable, too – the Audi combines impressive materials and in-car technology…

1 min
citroen c3 aircross

THE C3 Aircross effectively replaced Citroen’s C3 Picasso mini-MPV and hangs onto some of its predecessor’s design eccentricity. The Aircross is, however, thoroughly conventional under the metal, sharing its mechanical underpinnings with the C3 hatcback. It’s offered with a 1.2-litre PureTech petrol engine with 109bhp and a manual gearbox or 129bhp and an automatic; CO2 emissions are 135g/km for manual cars and 141g/km for the automatic. A 1.5-litre BlueHDi diesel is also offered, with 99bhp and CO2 emissions of 123g/km. Claimed fuel economy is up to 63mpg, which is impressive. Tall suspension helps the Aircross retain its composure, with only the occasional pothole grabbing your attention on badly surfaced roads. In corners, the Citroen is equally well composed; it resists excessive body lean and there’s plenty of grip. Four trims are available: C-Series,…

2 min
honda cr-v

THE latest Honda CR-V has subtly updated looks for improved appeal inside and out. Under the bonnet, purely petrol or diesel engines are no longer available: for 2021, your only choice is petrol-electric hybrid power, in line with other Honda models like the Jazz. The downside of that is the CR-V can no longer be bought as a seven-seater, as that was a feature of the 1.5-litre petrol-engined model only. The latest CR-V also features a plusher interior than before and despite shrinking slightly for this generation, the car’s boot is still one of the biggest in its class. Fold the rear seats down and a huge 1,692 litres of space opens up for luggage or DIY store purchases. As mentioned above, the CR-V’s engine range now consists only of a 2.0-litre,…

2 min
jaguar i-pace

THE I-Pace is Jaguar’s first electric car and counts Tesla’s Model X, Audi’s e-tron and Mercedes’ EQC among its rivals in the luxury electric SUV class. It has a 90kWh battery, powering an electric motor on each axle. The result is four-wheel-drive, 396bhp and a range of 292 miles. The I-Pace’s futuristic looks are matched by a 0-62mph acceleration time of 4.8 seconds but it impresses most when you take it down a twisty road; its poise and responsive handling will give enthusiasts hope that a move to electric cars won’t spell the end of driving fun. The only downside is a firm ride, especially on larger alloy wheels. Practicality is enhanced by a 656-litre boot, plus a small extra storage area under the bonnet. The interior comes with a slick 10-inch…

2 min
kia niro

THE Kia Niro’s shape is somewhere between a medium-sized SUV and a family hatchback, so although it’s about the same size as a Toyota Prius, it’s a lot more spacious inside. This makes it particularly appealing to family buyers. Unlike hybrid versions of cars originally designed as petrol and diesel-engined only, the Niro was intended as a hybrid from the start. This means its electric motor and battery system don’t rob it of interior or boot space, as is the case in some rivals. Its relatively square proportions help to increase the sense of space inside too; overall, the Niro makes for a very accommodating family car. It went through a refresh in 2019, which updated the car’s design slightly but was mainly about upgrading the technology on board. Inside, a bigger…