Australia's Easy Reading Motoring Website

18th DECEMBER, 2006

to our newsletter #66



Our announcement of the "Top Drive of 2006" is drawing near. Testing is complete and the result is to be settled in the coming days. A year's work is now under review. Please be assured, the many top cars we have road tested have provided an exceptionally satisfying year of motoring. The difficult part is assessing each model and naming just one car as the top drive. We look forward to that challenge.

As we complete our third year of publication, we anticipate some changes occuring during 2007. Our expansion will continue and some great plans will unfold soon.

We will finish this year amongst the top performing automotive news journals. We're not #1 ..... yet!

But next year our plans will see us continue our drive in that direction. Fasten your seat belt (so to speak) and be prepared to enjoy another great year of automotive news.

Warm regards,
Stephen Walker

The Editor road testing a 
Ford Focus XR5

The Editor road testing a
Ford Focus XR5

Location: Belmont NSW

Click the image for a clearer view

In this issue:

  • The Editor's Desk
  • Contents
  • Road Test - Holden Astra CDTi (AH series)
  • Looking Back - Audi quattro
  • Road Test - Land Rover Discovery 3 HSE
  • Announcement - Road Ramblings
  • Road Test - Saab 9-3 Linear SportCombi
  • News summary
  • Editor's Pick Of The News
  • Coming Events - Australia and Overseas
  • Road Test - Volkswagen LT 35
  • Road Test - Renault Megane Coupe-Cabriolet
  • Advertise with Next Car
  • Looking Back - 1965 Datsun Silvia
  • Road Test - Audi TT 3.2 quattro
  • Housekeeping

Holden Astra CDTi (AH series) road test

Click the image for the road test

Holden Astra CDTi (AH series)
road test

The Astra diesel is a welcome addition to the select few diesels that offer rewarding opportunities to Australian drivers. The rewards are the exciting driving qualities, comfortable travelling with outstanding fuel consumption and the ability to contribute less pollution to our atmosphere.

Read our Holden Astra CDTi (AH series) road test here.

Other road tests are here.


Please pass on this newsletter to family, friends and colleagues who have an interest in cars.
They are welcome to subscribe, if they wish.


1980 Audi quattro

The start of a classic: First Audi quattro was presented at the Geneva Motor Show in March 1980.

Some 11,452 of the “Ur-quattro”, as the car was known, were built between 1980 and 1991.

1980 Audi quattro

1980 Audi quattro
Click the image for a larger view

Land Rover Discovery 3 HSE road test

Click the image for our story

Land Rover Discovery 3 HSE
road test

At $89,990 (RRP) the Discovery 3 HSE V8 is well priced. It delivers driving pleasure with a comfortable interior, great hauling capabilities and legendary off-road performance with the satisfaction of knowing you're enjoying yourself with a vehicle that is up to the job!

Read our Land Rover Discovery 3 HSE road test here.

Other road tests are here.

'Road Ramblings'


presented by Chris Goodsell, each Saturday on

94.3 Rhema FM Dubbo at 10 AM
89.7 Rhema FM Tamworth at 2 PM
106.5 Rhema FM Taree at 10AM and
101.9 Life FM Wagga Wagga at 2:30 PM

91.5 Cooloola Christian Radio Gympie Qld at 1 PM
105.7 Rhema FM Mount Isa at 3 PM

Listen to "Road Ramblings" on the web at:

Rhema On The Road

Saab 9-3 Linear SportCombi road test

Click the image for the road test

Saab 9-3 Linear SportCombi
road test

Could a Saab be a Saab without a neat and innovative oddity? Of course not! Saab at one time had the ignition located on the floor out of the way of harm. These days, though, the key slots into the centre console. But Saab still has an oddity .....

Read our Saab 9-3 Linear SportCombi road test here.

Other road tests are here.


    Mitsubishi Releases 380 Limited Edition
    15th October, 2006
    Available in a choice of four colours - Storm, Platinum, Electro and Stealth - the 'Platinum Edition' represents great value for money at $30,990 (RRP) for the manual and $32,990 (RRP) for the automatic ..... more

    Alfa Romeo Spider Debuts in Sydney
    15th October, 2006
    The Sydney Motor Show (27th October – 5th November, 2006) will see the return of the Alfa Romeo Spider to Australia ..... more

    VW Golf GTI Receives Driving Fun Award From Popular Mechanics
    15th October, 2006
    Volkswagen of America, Inc. announced last month that they were among the recipients of Popular Mechanics 2007 Automotive Excellence Awards ..... more

    Adelaide's Holden FE 50th Anniversary Run
    16th October, 2006
    In 1956 the Holden FE series was released. This was a significant motoring event as the FE model was the first completely new Holden since 1948 ..... more

    Maserati at the Sydney Motor Show
    16th October, 2006
    Maserati will launch the Maserati GranSport MC Victory Coupe at the Sydney Motor Show (27th October, 2006) ..... more

    Peugeot 207 to be previewed at the Sydney Motor Show
    16th October, 2006
    Peugeot has confirmed the new 207, the newest member of the legendary 2 series dynasty, which has seen over 13.2 million cars produced since the launch of the 201 in 1929, will be released locally in early 2007 ..... more

    Mazda CX-7 Heading To Australia
    16th October, 2006
    The first right-hand drive Mazda CX-7 went down the production line in Japan earlier this month. The vehicle is destined for Australia ..... more

    BMW Z4 Coupes Arrive in Australia
    16th October, 2006
    Brandishing a choice of two BMW six-cylinder engines, the new Z4 Coupé range will start at $87,900 (RRP) for the 3.0si ..... more

    Ford launches the new BF Falcon MkII range
    17th October, 2006
    Ford has launched the new BF Falcon MkII range, which will go on sale later this month ..... more

    Lamborghini Murciélago LP640 Released
    17th October, 2006
    The new version of this highly successful super sports car features considerable innovations in terms of body design and mechanics. And also with a new name: Murciélago LP640, which refers to its engine position - longitudinale posteriore - and to its power 640 hp ..... more

    Volkswagen Touareg Range Revised
    17th October, 2006
    The engine line-up for the Touareg spans a performance range from 128 kW/400 Nm to 230 kW and 750 Nm of torque ..... more

    Thunder Of Holden's Special Edition Utes Rumble Again
    17th October, 2006
    Holden has released a second special edition SS Thunder Ute, featuring more than $3,000 in extra value ..... more

    Nissan Foria Concept Car Coming To Sydney
    17th October, 2006
    Nissan’s international Foria concept vehicle, designed to provide premium performance, quality and elegance, will feature as the highlight on the Nissan stand at Sydney's 2006 Australian International Motor Show ..... more

    Mitsubishi builds new research EV, "i MiEV"
    18th October, 2006
    Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) has built a new research vehicle, the Mitsubishi innovative Electric Vehicle (MiEV) for a next-generation EV development project ..... more

    Aston Martin Wins the FIA GT1 Manufacturers Cup
    18th October, 2006
    Aston Martin was awarded the 2006 FIA GT1 Manufacturers Cup while Works team, Aston Martin Racing BMS secured second place in the Teams championship at the penultimate round of the FIA GT Championship at Adria, Italy ..... more

    Giant magnet keeps roads metal free in England
    18th October, 2006
    A giant magnet attached to a new mechanical road sweeper is helping to keep major roads in England's south east safe by collecting metal which has fallen from vehicles ..... more

    Alfa Romeo 166 Revised
    18th October, 2006
    For the same $84,950 recommended retail price as the now-superseded Alfa Romeo 166, the new Ti is instantly recognisable thanks to its unique Ti 18 inch alloy wheels ..... more

    Audi TT is the most beautiful car in the world
    19th October, 2006
    Walter de Silva, design chief of the Audi brand group, picked up an impressive four prizes at the Auto Bild Design Award ceremony ..... more

    Mercedes-AMG 6.3-litre V8 range hits the road
    19th October, 2006
    Mercedes has launched four models powered by the AMG 6.3-litre V8 engine - the E 63 AMG saloon, the CLS 63 AMG 4-door coupé, the ML 63 AMG SUV and the CLK 63 AMG ..... more

    Honda’s Sports 4 Concept For Sydney
    19th October, 2006
    Honda will unveil its next-generation sports sedan concept car, the Honda Sports 4, at Sydney’s Australian International Motor Show next week ..... more

    Holden's Dual-Fuel V6 Engine Delivers More Range And Flexibility
    19th October, 2006
    Holden’s efficient dual-fuel Alloytec V6 engine is now available in VE Omega, Berlina and Commodore V-Series special edition models ..... more

    BMW X3 for 2007
    20th October, 2006
    A six-cylinder petrol engine, with 200 kW, will lead a re-invigorated BMW X3 range ..... more

    Audi's new TT Roadster for 2007
    20th October, 2006
    The open-top sports car retains the distinctive lines of its tremendously successful predecessor, but instils them with even greater emotion, performance and dynamism ..... more

    Dodge Caliber R/T Arrives
    22nd October, 2006
    Dodge has released another version of the 'off-to-a-slow-start' Caliber hatch by adding the R/T model to the range ..... more

    TVR plans to outsource production
    22nd October, 2006
    Staff at TVR's Blackpool factory, in England, were informed on Wednesday that the company is planning to outsource all production ..... more

    Mazda 6 line-up expanded with diesel models
    22nd October, 2006
    From this month Mazda adds a diesel powered Mazda 6 hatch and wagon to its range ..... more

    1895 Peugeot Leads 2006 London To Brighton Run
    22nd October, 2006
    A Peugeot is the oldest car in this year’s London to Brighton Veteran Car Run ..... more

    Riley Motor Club of SA on show in Adelaide
    23rd October, 2006
    The Riley Motor Club of South Australia is currently conducting a display at the National Motor Museum in Birdwood, South Australia ..... more

    GM to Flex American Muscle At SEMA
    23rd October, 2006
    Enthusiasts seeking the perfect vehicle to personalise will hit the jackpot with this year’s GM portfolio at the 2006 Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) Show ..... more

    Milestone for Mercedes-Benz Light Commercial Vehicles
    23rd October, 2006
    There are now more than 30,000 light commercials from Mercedes-Benz on Australian roads ..... more

    Volkswagen Brand Announces Record Deliveries Worldwide
    23rd October, 2006
    A total of 303,000 VW passenger cars were delivered worldwide in September, 4 percent up on the same month in 2005 and the highest ever figure for September ..... more

    BMW M6 Convertible
    23rd October, 2006
    Australians will get their first peek at the fastest accelerating and most expensive example of open-top motoring in the BMW family, the M6 Convertible, later this week ..... more

    Audi R10 TDI ends début season undefeated
    23rd October, 2006
    With a 1-2 victory in the finalé of the American Le Mans Series at Laguna Seca (California), Audi AG yet again has written a piece of motor sport history ..... more

    Antonov presents world’s first high performance car and SUV with 2-speed supercharger technology at SEMA
    24th October, 2006
    Antonov, a European automotive technology company, is presenting its innovative 2-speed supercharger drive system at the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) show ..... more

    Britain's Historic Motor Sport Show - Race Retro
    24th October, 2006
    The International Historic Motor Sport Show – will now be known by the shorter name of ‘Race Retro’ – and the 4th show will take place on 23rd-25th March, 2007 ..... more

    Nissan Tiida to be sourced from Thailand in 2007
    24th October, 2006
    Nissan Australia announced today that the new Tiida sedan and hatch will be sourced from its Thailand plant in 2007 ..... more

    2006 Australian Off Road Championship Mitsubishi Seals Its 6th Class Seven Title In A Row
    25th October, 2006
    Following the running of the Goondiwindi 400 - the fifth and final round of the 2006 Australian Off Road Championship ..... more

    Aston Martin Racing Victorious at Laguna Seca
    25th October, 2006
    Aston Martin Racing finished first and fourth at the Monterey Sports Car Championships at Laguna Seca on Saturday 21st October ..... more

    Five Stars for the Mercedes-Benz B-Class
    25th October, 2006
    The Mercedes-Benz B-Class has passed crash tests performed in accordance with the European NCAP (New Car Assessment Programme) rating system ..... more

    Volkswagen Phaeton for Pope Benedict XVI
    25th October, 2006
    Pope Benedict XVI has been presented with a specially equipped Phaeton by the Chairman of the Board of Management of Volkswagen Aktiengesellschaft, Dr. Bernd Pischetsrieder ..... more

    Veteran Cars to Master the Sixty Mile Route to Brighton
    25th October, 2006
    On Sunday 5th November the 492 pre-1905 veteran cars entered for Britain's 110th anniversary London to Brighton Veteran Car Run (LBVCR) will follow much of the original route taken by the pioneering motorists on the 1896 Run ..... more

    Avis to buy 2,500 Mitsubishi 380s in 2007
    25th October, 2006
    Mitsubishi has concluded a deal with Avis Australia that will see 2,500 of its appealing Mitsubishi 380s introduced to the Avis Australia car rental fleet between January and December, 2007 ..... more

    A New Force For FPV
    26th October, 2006
    “The introduction of the Force 6 and Force 8 models will set the standard for locally produced, luxury high performance cars,” said Sak Ryopponen, Managing Director for Ford Performance Vehicles ..... more

    Hummer Continues Global Expansion Down Under
    26th October, 2006
    Holden has today confirmed that the Hummer H3 is coming to Australia in 2007, just as Next Car disclosed on 7th April, 2005 ..... more

    Peugeot 4007 – A New Driving Experience
    27th October, 2006
    Peugeot is entering into the 4x4 SUV (Sports Utility Vehicle) market with a new model that is 4.64 metres long and fitted with one of its accomplished HDi diesel engines, with DPFS (Diesel Particulate Filter System) ..... more

    VXR arrives in Australia
    27th October, 2006
    As promised earlier this year, Holden Special Vehicles (HSV) is unleashing the hottest European import onto the Australian market in 2006 - the HSV VXR ..... more

    Suzuki Unveils SX4 WRC Concept
    27th October, 2006
    Suzuki Australia Managing Director, Mr Takeshi Hayasaki, announced the official launch of SX4 in Australia is now scheduled for the first quarter of 2007 ..... more

    Renault Launches New Laguna
    27th October, 2006
    Renault enters the Australian diesel passenger car market with a stylish new Laguna offering the highest levels of safety, comfort and dynamic driving in its class ..... more

    Generation Game on the Brighton Run
    29th October, 2006
    The average age of the drivers on this years run is 56, with the youngest just 17-years-old and the oldest 89 ..... more

    Saab 9-3 Extends its Sporty Driver Focus
    29th October, 2006
    Saab’s trademark cockpit-inspired driving environment is enhanced in the new 2007 model year 9-3 range which also introduces a new ‘Linear Sport’ model ..... more

    Audi shows new TT in Sydney
    29th October, 2006
    The new Audi TT made its Australian premiere at the 2006 Australian International Motor Show in Sydney on 26th October, ahead of its December national launch ..... more

    Mazda CX-7 in Sydney
    29th October, 2006
    Visitors to the Sydney Motor Show will be the first in the world to see the right-hand drive version of the CX-7, Mazda’s latest addition to its SUV family ..... more

    Subaru Tribeca in Sydney
    29th October, 2006
    Subaru’s newest model, the Tribeca, has scored five stars in independent crashworthiness testing conducted by the Australasian New Car Assessment Programme (ANCAP) ..... more

    Mercedes-Benz Releases the new GL-Class
    30th October, 2006
    The all-new premium off-roader is available with both V6 diesel power in the GL 320 CDI and the GL 500 comes equipped the new-generation 285 kW petrol V8 ..... more

    Facelifted Kia Sorento now offers more
    30th October, 2006
    Kia has released a limited edition version of its new Sorento to launch the recent facelift of its mid-size SUV model ..... more

    Here comes the new Ford Focus Coupe-Cabriolet
    30th October, 2006
    Ford's stylish range of small vehicles just got a whole lot wider with the announcement that the fun and exciting Focus Coupe-Cabriolet will join the line-up in 2007 ..... more

    New Volkswagen Eos in Sydney
    30th October, 2006
    After selling more than one million Volkswagen convertibles (from the Beetle, Karmann Ghia, Golf and New Beetle series) worldwide, the new Eos gets off to a flying start ..... more

    New Holden Astra TwinTop And SRi Models
    30th October, 2006
    The Astra TwinTop retractable hard top convertible and sporty SRi five-door hatch made their Australian debuts on the Holden show stand. Both vehicles and a new SRi three-door coupe, will be on sale in December ..... more

    Peugeot’s 307 HDi OXYGO Limited Edition
    31st October, 2006
    Peugeot have provided a perfect solution for those of us who want to make an environmentally sound choice when choosing our "next car" ..... more

    Mitsubishi Colt Cabriolet
    1st November, 2006
    The sporty Colt Cabriolet is a collaboration between Mitsubishi and the legendary Italian coachbuilder Pininfarina and is based on the CZ2 concept car that was originally shown at the Geneva Motor Show in 2003 ..... more

    Jaguar XKR GT3 by Apex Motorsport
    2nd November, 2006
    Apex Motorsport, led by Richard Lloyd, has revealed the first images of the recently announced Jaguar XKR GT3 race car ..... more

    Record month for HSV
    2nd November, 2006
    More than 490 retail deliveries were registered in Australia and New Zealand in October, well above the previous monthly record of 436 ..... more

    Vatanen and Sainz Driving for Volkswagen
    2nd November, 2006
    Heat, high dunes and the desert are awaiting the Volkswagen factory team in its dress rehearsal for the start of the Dakar Rally ..... more

    New BMW single-seater for Australia
    2nd November, 2006
    BMW will next month introduce a look-alike version of the M6 convertible in which you won’t lose your driving licence or ever get a speeding ticket. Guaranteed ..... more

    Ford Dedicates New R&D Centre in Geelong
    2nd November, 2006
    Ford Motor Company Executive Chairman Bill Ford joined with Victorian State Premier, Steve Bracks and Federal Minister for Industry, Tourism & Resources, Ian Macfarlane last Friday to officially dedicate the new Research & Development Centre currently under construction by Ford in Geelong ..... more

    Back to the future or "Samba Americano"
    2nd November, 2006
    The packaging is a familiar face from the 60s: the Samba-Bus. But although the bus is based on the classic version of the first VW Transporter from the 1950s, the similarities are only skin-deep. On the inside it features values going far into the future ..... more

    Holden Efijy Named ‘Hot Rod of the Year’ in USA
    3rd November, 2006
    Holden’s stunning Efijy show car has celebrated its first birthday being named Hot Rod of the Year by the influential enthusiast magazine, HOT ROD, in the United States ..... more

    Chrysler Confirms Sebring for Australia
    3rd November, 2006
    It may not be the most attractive of designs, but the mid-size Chrysler Sebring sedan is coming to Australia for a mid-2007 release ..... more

    Tribeca is Subaru’s Space Ace
    3rd November, 2006
    The Subaru range is taking on a new dimension with the introduction of the brand’s largest vehicle, the All-Wheel Drive Tribeca ..... more

    Holden Special Vehicles Grange
    5th November, 2006
    Combining an elegant, individual sense of style with traditional HSV hard edged performance cues, the WM Grange debuted at the Sydney Motor Show ahead of its wider Australian release in 2007 ..... more

    Motor Vehicle Market Rebounds in October
    6th November, 2006
    Motor vehicle sales in Australia have rebounded over the last month thanks to surging demand for light cars and encouraging sales of family sedans and sports utility vehicles (SUVs) ..... more

    New Lotus Europa S Previewed in Sydney
    6th November, 2006
    The Europa S will provide Lotus customers a spectacular sports machine with significantly enhanced levels of touring and cruising capability as well as higher levels of practicality and refinement to complement the simplicity of the Elise and Exige models ..... more

    Audi heading for new record figures in 2006
    7th November, 2006
    Audi sold 757,700 vehicles worldwide in the first ten months of this year, an increase of 8.7 percent compared with the same period of last year ..... more

    Sun Shines on 2006 Brighton Run
    7th November, 2006
    The sun shone and the crowds flocked to watch the 110th Anniversary London to Brighton Veteran Car Run, lining the 60-mile route to cheer and clap the 492 participants from all over the world ..... more

    New Generation Outlander Shown in Sydney
    7th November, 2006
    Mitsubishi's soon-to-be-released new-generation Outlander SUV broke cover at the Australian International Motor Show in Sydney, as part of the Company's "4WD Revolution" campaign ..... more

    Record Prices For Australian Muscle Cars
    7th November, 2006
    The 2006 Australian International Motor Show has ended on a high note with a price-smashing auction of classic cars, motorcycles and automotive memorabilia ..... more

    Ford Ready To Claim 30 Years Leadership in UK
    7th November, 2006
    Ford is racing towards 30 successive years as Britain's top selling car brand, helped by an October share of the total vehicle market of almost 17 per cent ..... more

    Britain's Bristol Fighter T
    8th November, 2006
    Bristol, the exclusive car manufacturer, has been operating in England for 60 years. An expansion of their product line-up is planned for late next year when they introduce a new version of the high performance Fighter model ..... more

    Volkswagen Opens Cold and Climate Test Centre
    8th November, 2006
    Volkswagen inaugurated the new cold and climate test centre at its Wolfsburg plant on Monday ..... more

    Kia Sportage Diesel for 2007
    8th November, 2006
    Kia Motors Australia previewed a diesel version of its Sportage compact SUV at the Australian International Motor Show in Sydney, ahead of a planned introduction in mid-2007 ..... more

    Mazda CX-9 Heading For Australia
    8th November, 2006
    Mazda will add the CX-9, a three-row, seven-seat, crossover SUV, to its Australian line-up from early 2008 ..... more

    Saab 96 to Compete in 2006 La Carrera Panamericana
    9th November, 2006
    A classic 1960 Saab 96 rally car has left its homeland, Sweden, headed for Southern Mexico to compete in the grueling 19th La Carrera Panamericana (The Mexican Road Race) ..... more

    Chrysler Group at SEMA 2006
    9th November, 2006
    The annual Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) trade show held in Las Vegas, United States, last week has witnessed the debut of a number of vehicles from the Chrysler Group’s SkunkWerks team ..... more

    Lotus Launches New Elise S
    9th November, 2006
    Lotus has re-introduced a new entry level model to its Elise range with the launch of the new Elise S, which was unveiled at the Sydney International Motor Show ..... more

    Mercedes-Benz SLK Special "Edition 10"
    12th November, 2006
    The "Edition 10" show car with which Mercedes-Benz marked ten years of the SLK-Class at the 2006 Paris Motor Show is available to European customers from January 2007 ..... more

    Mattias Vöcks' classic Volvo
    12th November, 2006
    Believe it or not, young Swedes grow up dreaming of modifying their Swedish cars; taking a few inches out of the ride height and dropping in a late-model drivetrain ..... more

    Mitsubishi's TMR 380 Concept Vehicle
    12th November, 2006
    The award winning Mitsubishi 380 provides a unique combination of power, performance, space and agile road handling that breaks new ground in the Australian large car market ..... more

    New Smart Fort Wo for 2007
    13th November, 2006
    To be launched in Europe in mid-2007, the new Smart Fortwo is said to be more comfortable, more agile and more ecological than its predecessor ..... more

    Volkswagen Eos Awarded “2006 Best of What’s New” Prize
    13th November, 2006
    The 2007 Volkswagen Eos has been awarded a “2006 Best of What’s New” award from Popular Science magazine in the automotive category ..... more

    New Kia Carnival
    13th November, 2006
    The new Kia Carnival is smaller than the Kia Grand Carnival, which was launched earlier this year ..... more

    Mazda BT-50 For December Release
    13th November, 2006
    The B Series commercial range has been Mazda’s long time workhorse. From December B Series makes way for the BT-50, Mazda’s new truck ..... more

    Mercedes-Benz GL-Class voted “SUV of the year 2007”
    14th November, 2006
    A leading U.S. motoring magazine, MOTOR TREND, has named the Mercedes-Benz GL 450 the best SUV of the year 2007 ..... more

    New Ford Ranger Unveiled
    14th November, 2006
    Ford Australia unveiled the vehicle that will replace Courier and spearhead its light commercial vehicle line-up in 2007 at the recent Sydney Motor Show – the all-new Ford Ranger ..... more

    Mitsubishi Lancer For 2007 To Debut in Detroit
    14th November, 2006
    Ninety years after starting car production (with the 1917 Model-A), Mitsubishi has embarked upon its most ambitious automotive project ever through the launch of its first global platform ..... more

    Holden Recall - VE/WM
    15th November, 2006
    The recall is in relation to a potential issue regarding rear seat belt buckles ..... more

    Detroit's Big 3 Meet US President George W. Bush
    15th November, 2006
    Joint statement attributable to Chrysler Group president and CEO Tom LaSorda, Ford Motor Company president and CEO Alan Mulally, and General Motors chairman and CEO Rick Wagoner regarding the meeting between President George W. Bush and the CEOs of America's domestic automotive industry ..... more

    Aston Martin Launches the V8 Vantage Roadster
    15th November, 2006
    Aston Martin will unveil one of the most eagerly anticipated convertibles of the year when the V8 Vantage Roadster is revealed to the media at the 2006 Los Angeles Motor Show on Wednesday 29th November, 2006 ..... more

    Mazda Nagare Concept Car for Los Angeles Motor Show
    15th November, 2006
    Mazda Motor Corporation today announced the global reveal of an all-new concept car, Nagare (pronounced na-gah-reh), at the Greater Los Angeles International Auto Show ..... more

    BMW's new Nürburgring home
    16th November, 2006
    After a three year renovation and expansion project, BMW has a new home at the famous Nürburgring Nordschleife race circuit ..... more

    Jeep Wrangler Earns Trio of Awards
    16th November, 2006
    The 2007 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon and Wrangler Unlimited, due for Australian launch in March 2007, have notched a trio of prestigious awards in the United States ..... more

    France's Retromobile 2007
    17th November, 2006
    For this 32nd show, Retromobile is offering an exhibition as new and original as it is prestigious: a dozen automobiles from the personal collection of Nick Mason ..... more

    New Audi TT Coupé
    17th November, 2006
    Right from the day it made its debut, in 1998, the Audi TT took the sports coupé segment by storm. And it sharpened the brand's profile in the process. Now the second generation of this successful model is making its debut in Australia ..... more

    Mercedes-Benz: 25 million passenger cars
    17th November, 2006
    The brand has delivered 25 million passenger cars to customers worldwide since 1945. The milestone vehicle – a new generation E-Class – was handed over to the owner of a Munich taxi company at the Mercedes-Benz Customer Centre in Sindelfingen ..... more

    Soichiro Honda - Centenary of Birth
    17th November, 2006
    Born on 17th November, 1906, the son of a blacksmith and a weaver, Soichiro Honda was fascinated by machines and how they worked ..... more

    Sir Alec Issigonis - Centenary of Birth
    18th November, 2006
    Born on 18th November, 1906, his most famous idea was destined to leave its stamp on the development of the automobile for decades to come: the Austin/Morris Mini ..... more

    VW Passat R36 for 2007
    19th November, 2006
    Volkswagen is set to release its most potent ‘R’ model yet – the Passat R36.  Joining the Golf R32 and only the second model in the VW line-up to carry the ‘R’ badge ..... more

    Mitsubishi "i" takes RJC Car of the Year 2007
    20th November, 2006
    Mitsubishi Motors Corporation has announced that the "i" has been awarded the "RJC Car of the Year 2007" by the Automotive Researchers' & Journalists' Conference of Japan (RJC) ..... more

    Caterham's Golden Jubilee
    20th November, 2006
    The Caterham 7 celebrates its 50th birthday in 2007 and to commemorate its landmark year Caterham Cars is to host a Golden Jubilee weekend of Caterham racing action at Donington Park (UK) next June ..... more

    Saab Collects Top Design Trophy
    21st November, 2006
    The stunning Saab Aero X Concept has been crowned 'Concept Car of the Year' by Autocar, Britain's longest-established car magazine ..... more

    Honda Shows Off Hydrogen-Powered FCX Concept
    21st November, 2006
    American Honda has shown off its next-generation hydrogen-powered FCX concept car with a demonstration drive at the Laguna Seca Raceway in Monterey, California ..... more

    200,000th Boxster rolls off the line
    21st November, 2006
    The 200,000th Boxster has just rolled off the production line at its partner Valmet Automotive in Uusikaupunki in Finland ..... more

    UK Taxi Drivers Hail the new TX4
    22nd November, 2006
    Hundreds of eager cabbies have been inundating LTI dealers, wanting to see the latest edition of the world-famous vehicle and sign up for a test drive ..... more

    Australians Boost BMW V10 to Record Highs
    22nd November, 2006
    The BMW home of ultra-high performance cars, BMW M GmbH, is firing on all ten cylinders thanks to demand for its jewel ..... more

    VW Neeza concept car
    22nd November, 2006
    Shanghai Volkswagen (SVW) is presenting the Neeza concept car as a world premiere at the Beijing International Automotive Exhibition. The self-assured mid-size model – conceptually a coupé and station wagon crossover ..... more

    Chrysler Group Concepts For Detroit Motor Show
    23rd November, 2006
    Chrysler Group will unveil two concept vehicles in January 2007 at the Detroit Motor Show — the Chrysler Nassau Concept and the Jeep Trailhawk Concept ..... more

    Saab 9-3 Sedan Earns IIHS 2007 Top Honours
    23rd November, 2006
    In America, the Saab 9-3 Sedan has earned 2007 Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s Top Safety Pick Award in the mid-size car category ..... more

    Mercedes-Benz Developing Systems to Counter Driver Fatigue
    23rd November, 2006
    Safety experts at Mercedes-Benz are turning their attention to one of the principal causes of serious traffic accidents: driver fatigue. The objective of their work is to develop a system that is capable of recognising fatigue in time to warn the driver ..... more

    VW Crafter Claims What Van? 'Van Of The Year' Award
    24th November, 2006
    Ahead of its Australian release in a few months, the Volkswagen Crafter, has claimed the top award at the prestigious What Van? Van of the Year Awards in England ..... more

    Suzuki Grand Vitara Wins Best Buy at North American Consumer Awards
    24th November, 2006
    The Suzuki Grand Vitara has beaten 20 other compact Sport Utility Vehicle models to win a major consumer award in the United States ..... more

    Renault Conducts its 10,000th Crash Test
    26th November, 2006
    Renault made its 10,000th crash test on Saturday 18th November, 2006, at the Lardy Technical Centre in France ..... more

    Mitsubishi Releases All-New Outlander
    26th November, 2006
    Mitsubishi Australia has released the latest generation Outlander that has a choice of a four or six-cylinder engine, five and seven-seat configurations and a host of new drive-train, seating and other packaging innovations ..... more

    Name Mogo Zoo’s Rare White Lion Cubs
    26th November, 2006
    The latest additions to the growing pride of Peugeot sponsored white lions at Mogo Zoo are still unnamed and Australians are being asked to come up with names for the 9-week-old fluffy male and female cub as part of a national competition ..... more

    Austria's One Million Chryslers
    26th November, 2006
    Almost 15 years after the first Chrysler Voyager rolled off the production line in Graz, Austria, in 1991, DaimlerChrysler's Chrysler Group celebrated a milestone of one million Chrysler and Jeep vehicles "Made in Europe" ..... more

    Volkswagen Touareg Tows Jumbo Jet
    27th November, 2006
    In order for the Touareg V10 TDI to be able to tow the big bird, the weight of the Volkswagen had to be increased firstly. This sounds paradoxical but is absolutely necessary so that the power of the engine can be converted into propelling force ..... more

    Mahindra For Australia
    27th November, 2006
    TMI Pacific Pty Ltd is a newly formed company that will import and distribute Mahindra motor vehicles from early 2007 ..... more

    World's most powerful chauffeur-driven saloon
    27th November, 2006
    Maybach, the luxury brand with an illustrious past, re-established just four years ago, is adding a fourth variant to its line-up in the shape of the newly developed 62 S model ..... more

    New Jaguar XF for 2008
    28th November, 2006
    Jaguar Cars today announced that a new saloon, the Jaguar XF, will make its debut next year, ahead of its general release in mid-2008 ..... more

    Chrysler to show new Sebring cabrio in LA
    29th November, 2006
    The new Chrysler Sebring Cabrio will make its debut later today at the Los Angeles Motor Show ..... more

    Mustang by Giugiaro
    29th November, 2006
    The Ford Mustang captured the hearts and minds of millions of enthusiasts and future owners when the all-new model debuted ..... more

    Volkswagen Tiguan Concept for LA
    29th November, 2006
    Volkswagen will unveil its compact 4x4, the Concept Tiguan, at the Los Angeles Motor Show later this week and has announced that the first examples of the new SUV will be delivered to customers by the end of next year ..... more

    Skoda Roomster Scout
    30th November, 2006
    Following the international debut of the Octavia Scout at September’s Paris Motor Show, Škoda Auto has announced the Roomster Scout - a brand new version of the compact MPV ..... more

    Duke of Edinburgh presents the Lord’s Taverners 800th Ford Transit Minibus to mark the Queen’s 80th Birthday
    30th November, 2006
    The Duke of Edinburgh, Patron and Twelfth Man of The Lord’s Taverners, cricket’s official charity in England, has presented the 800th Lord’s Taverners minibus to Holyport Manor School, Maidenhead at Windsor Castle ..... more

    Volvo Presents Collision Avoidance System
    1st December, 2006
    Volvo has announced more innovative safety technology – a unique ‘City Safety’ system that could help drivers avoid 50 per cent of all rear-end, low speed accidents that often happen in urban environments or slow moving traffic ..... more

    Another record month of sales for HSV
    1st December, 2006
    Building on the best month of sales in the history of Holden Special Vehicles, Managing Director Phil Harding today confirmed November sales had eclipsed October – with 515 retail deliveries into Australia and New Zealand ..... more

    V8 Vantage gets a performance advantage
    1st December, 2006
    Prodrive has launched a range of parts, in England, for the Aston Martin V8 Vantage, which improves the car’s performance and enhances its driving dynamics. The range includes: a performance pack for the engine; new driver-adjustable suspension; unique forged wheels; and a discreet aero package ..... more

    Mazda Nagare Concept
    1st December, 2006
    Nagare: (pronounced “na-ga-reh”) Japanese for ‘flow’ and the embodiment of motion. Under the direction of Mazda’s new global design director, Laurens van den Acker, the challenge given to the team was to invent a novel means of registering motion in vehicles whether they’re moving or still ..... more

    Safety Package For Ford Territory
    1st December, 2006
    Ford has announced details of two new safety packages which will be available on Territory TX rear-wheel drive and Territory TS rear-wheel drive from today ..... more

    BMW Hydrogen 7 Debuts in LA
    3rd December, 2006
    The world’s first hydrogen-drive luxury automobile – the BMW Hydrogen 7 – has celebrated its world premiere at the Los Angeles Motor Show with the Governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger, congratulating the hydrogen initiative ..... more

    The Rolls Royce of bird boxes!
    3rd December, 2006
    A custom-made owl box was unveiled on Friday in the 42 acre grounds of the Rolls-Royce plant at Goodwood (England) ..... more

    Mercedes-Benz B-Class Top-Scores in Latest ANCAP Testing
    3rd December, 2006
    The Australasian New Car Assessment Programme has rated the Mercedes -Benz B-class with its highest five star rating for occupant protection in its latest round of crash tests ..... more

    Honda Remix Concept in LA
    4th December, 2006
    The Honda Remix small sport concept vehicle made its world debut at the Los Angeles Motor Show last week. The Remix explores the shape and design of a two-seat sports car ..... more

    New Porsche Cayenne For 2007
    4th December, 2006
    The Cayenne is starting a new chapter in its story: four years after the model’s launch Porsche is presenting the second generation of its SUV ..... more

    Queensland Premier Trials Australia’s First Ethanol Car
    6th December, 2006
    Saab Australia this week welcomed the Queensland Government’s commitment to trial Australia’s first ethanol production car, Saab BioPower, with the vehicle joining QFleet in January ..... more

    Audi is on the rise in Australia
    6th December, 2006
    Audi Australia has achieved another record for the month of November – this time breaking through the 600 units per month barrier ..... more

    Mitsubishi Reclaims Market Share
    6th December, 2006
    Three months of positive growth has reinforced that Mitsubishi Motors' sales are steadily growing month on month, underpinned by one of the most complete ranges of quality, value for money vehicles ..... more

    Nissan Qashqai Coming To Australia
    6th December, 2006
    Around 80% of Qashqai (pronounced ‘Cash-Kai’) production will be exported, the majority for sale within Europe. The car will also be shipped to numerous overseas markets such as the Middle East, Australia, South Africa as well as Japan ..... more

    GM Opens State-of-the-Art Roll-Over Crash Testing Facility
    7th December, 2006
    General Motors opened a state-of-the-art roll-over crash test facility on Tuesday, becoming the first North American car maker to integrate in-house testing for the infrequent but potentially deadly roll-over crashes that claim 10,000 lives a year ..... more

    Car-2-X Communication From DaimlerChrysler
    7th December, 2006
    In future, motorists will be able to detect danger even if the danger spot lies around the next bend or over the horizon ..... more

    Peugeot 207 CC for 2007
    7th December, 2006
    It was in the 1930s that Peugeot started the innovative concept of the Coupé Cabriolet, with the 401, 601 and 402 “Eclipse”. This concept was to become one of Peugeot’s trademark features and today’s cars, the 206 CC and 307 CC have made the marque the No1 seller of Coupé Cabriolets ..... more

    Honda Accord Coupe Concept For Detroit
    7th December, 2006
    A new look for the next generation Honda Accord Coupe will be unveiled at Detroit’s North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), in January ..... more

    Aston Martin N24 V8 Vantage to compete at Bahrain 24-hour
    8th December, 2006
    Aston Martin’s factory prepared, production standard, N24 V8 Vantage is to take to the race track again at the 24-hour race of Bahrain, 15th-16th December, 2006 ..... more

    VW Bids For Maiden Diesel Dakar Rally Win
    10th December, 2006
    The Volkswagen works rally team next month embarks on its most ambitious challenge yet – to become the first to win the legendary Dakar Rally with a diesel powered vehicle ..... more

    Maserati Launches MC12 Versione Corse
    11th December, 2006
    Maserati has used the Bologna Motor Show (Italy) to unveil one of the most extreme super cars now available – the MC12 Versione Corse ..... more

    Astra Heads To North America
    11th December, 2006
    Saturn has confirmed that it will add the Astra to its line-up in late 2007, marking an important stage in its product revitalisation plan ..... more

    Mercedes-Benz M-Class Comes Out on Top in US Safety Testing
    11th December, 2006
    The US Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) has named the Mercedes-Benz M-Class its Top Safety Pick 2007 – the best buy when it comes to safety ..... more

    New Lancer Sedan To Debut At 2007 Detroit Motor Show
    11th December, 2006
    Mitsubishi will give the new North American market specification Lancer compact sport sedan its global premiere at the 2007 Detroit Motor Show ..... more

    Volkswagen Wins At Australia’s Best Car Awards
    11th December, 2006
    Having had the outstanding Volkswagen Golf GTI named as the "Top Drive of 2005" late last year by Next Car, Volkswagen has now won three awards at the prestigious ‘Australia’s Best Car Awards’ for 2006 ..... more

    Le Mans Legend 2007
    12th December, 2006
    On Saturday 16th June 2007, a few hours before the start of the world famous endurance race, a grid of 61 Le Mans cars from 1956 to 1968 will take to the La Sarthe circuit for a one-hour, two-driver support race ..... more

    Škoda Fabia For 2007
    12th December, 2006
    Meet Europe's new Škoda Fabia, not only does it have a modern, youthful look that reflects Škoda’s unique design direction, but the new Fabia is also one of the most practical and spacious vehicles in its class ..... more

    Mercedes-Benz S 420 CDI: the flagship diesel
    12th December, 2006
    Mercedes-Benz is extending its European S-Class range with another diesel variant, the S 420 CDI. The new eight-cylinder model is powered by a state-of-the-art V8 CDI engine developing 235 kW and (wait for it) 730 newton metres of peak torque ..... more

    Audi to invest billions in new models
    12th December, 2006
    The Audi brand intends to extend its range of vehicle models from the existing 22 to a total of 40 by the year 2015 ..... more

    Mazda to Debut Ryuga Concept Car in Detroit
    13th December, 2006
    Mazda will unveil an all-new concept car, the Ryuga, and its all-new Tribute Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV) at the 2007 Detroit Motor Show ..... more

    Aston Martin Rushes To Russia
    14th December, 2006
    The expansion of Aston Martin’s global dealership network is all set to move into Russia for the first time in the company’s 94-year history ..... more

    Hong Kong Hotel Takes 14 Rolls Royce Phantoms
    17th December, 2006
    The Peninsula Hong Kong has unveiled a fleet of 14 new Rolls-Royce Phantoms – the largest single order ever for this car ..... more

    Caprice Wins Best Luxury Car At Middle East Car Of The Year Awards
    17th December, 2006
    GM Holden’s export vehicle, the Australian-built Chevrolet Caprice, has won the Best Luxury Car Award at the 2006 Autocar Middle East Awards ..... more

    Audi S8 – the luxury-class sports model
    17th December, 2006
    Audi is now unveiling in Australia, a sporty top model of the very highest calibre: the Audi S8 stands for exceptional dynamism, as expressed by its engine, transmission, suspension and design, as well as for exclusiveness and luxury ..... more

    Volvo XC60 Concept
    17th December, 2006
    The XC60 Concept offers the world a preview of the next XC model to come from Volvo Cars ..... more

    Chrysler 300C SRT8 Touring Arrives
    18th December, 2006
    Chrysler will launch a high performance Street and Racing Technology (SRT) version of its 300C Touring in Australia ..... more

All these stories and the previous news stories can be accessed
from our NEWS PAGE.
Simply click on the link above.

The Editor's Pick Of The News

After reading the news, which story did you enjoy the most?

The Mitsubishi 380 is a good drive, many folks recognise that. But now Mitsubishi, with the input of the peformance orientated folks from Sprintex (in Perrh WA) have made a great concept car which they call TMR 380. It made its debut appearance at the 2006 Sydney Motor Show. Mitsubishi, the company that is here to stay, despite the strange reporting standards of the taxpayer funded ABC, should bring this car to market. And the first valiant volunteer to drive the car is ..... me!

Read the story ..... here.

Stephen Walker

Mitsubishi 380 TMR concept car

Click the image for the story



  • MotorFest
    Around Parliament House
    Sydney, New South Wales
    Friday 26th January, 2007 (9AM - 4PM)

  • Brisbane Motor Show
    (Brisbane International Motor Show)
    Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre,
    South Bank
    Brisbane, Queensland
    Friday 2nd February to
    Sunday 11th February, 2007

  • Melbourne Motor Show
    (Melbourne International Motor Show)
    Melbourne Exhibition Centre, South Melbourne
    Melbourne, Victoria
    Friday 2nd March to
    Monday 12th March, 2007

  • Adelaide Motor Show
    Adelaide Showground
    Adelaide, South Australia
    Wednesday 28th March to
    Sunday 1st April, 2007

  • Sydney Motor Show
    (Australian International Motor Show)
    Sydney Exhibition Centre, Darling Harbour
    Sydney, New South Wales
    Thursday 11th October to
    Sunday 21st October, 2007


  • Detroit Motor Show
    (North American International Auto Show)
    COBO Conference and Exhibition Centre
    Detroit, Michigan, USA
    Saturday 13th January to
    Sunday 21st January, 2007

  • Chicago Motor Show
    (Chicago Auto Show)
    McCormick Place
    Chicago, Illinois, USA
    Friday 9th February to
    Sunday 18th February, 2007

  • Retromobile
    PARIS EXPO, Place de la Porte de Versailles
    Paris, France
    Friday 16th February to
    Sunday 25th February, 2007

  • Race Retro
    (previously known as Historic Motor Sport Show)
    Stoneleigh Park
    Coventry, England
    Friday 23rd March to
    Sunday 25th March, 2007

  • New York Motor Show
    (New York International Auto Show)
    Jacob K. Javits Convention Centre
    New York, NY, USA
    Friday 6th April to
    Sunday 15th April, 2007

All events and dates are subject to change without notice.

Volkswagen LT 35 road test

Click the image for the road test

Volkswagen LT 35
road test

In the meantime, the LT35 has proved that Volkswagen has the goods to effective compete in Australia's commercial van market.

Read our Volkswagen LT 35 road test here.

Other road tests are here.


Shop on-line at Optical and Hearing
Shop on-line at Optical and Hearing for
contact lenses • lenses • frames •  sunglasses •  hearing aids

Click here to shop on-line at Optical and Hearing

Renault Megane Coupe-Cabriolet road test

Click the image for the road test

Renault Megane Coupe-Cabriolet
road test

To conclude, one must say that driving the Renault Megane coupe-cabriolet is an unqualified feeling of satisfaction, providing you are willing to accept the inherent cowl shake which is evident in many convertibles ..... but not all!

Read our Renault Megane Coupe-Cabriolet road test here.

Other road tests are here.

Advertise with Next Car

To advertise with Next Car, contact us by e-mail from here.


1965 Datsun Silvia

In 1963, with the opening of a section of the Meishin Expressway, the first-generation Datsun Cedric Special was the focus of attention when it was chosen as Japan’s first highway patrol car. Then in December 1965, with the opening of the Daisan Keihin Road, the first-generation Datsun Silvia (CSP311) was selected as a patrol car by the Kanagawa Prefectural Police. Since the speed limit on the No.3 Keihin was 80 km/h, it was decided that a car capable of performing well at high speeds was needed for law enforcement. The Silvia, with its top speed of 165 km/h, fitted 'the bill'. This was the first time anywhere in Japan that a sports car had been put on police patrol, so it was front-page news. The photograph shows the official ceremony held at the Kanagawa Prefectural Police HQ on 9th December 1965, when the new Silvia was delivered.

1965 Datsun Silvia

1965 Datsun Silvia

Audi TT 3.2 quattro road test

Click the image for the road test

Audi TT 3.2 quattro
road test

When driving by the seat of your pants, you get a thrill a minute if you use the 3.2's very capable performance characteristics, which are significantly enhanced by the presence of the quattro permanent all-wheel drive system. Those performance attributes are readily available with every turn of the steering wheel and with every change of gear and with every depression of the accelerator.

Read our Audi TT 3.2 quattro road test here.

Other road tests are here.


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