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  • Audi RS5 – delightfully bonkers

    June 29, 2011 @ 1:32 pm | by Michael McAleer

    This week’s car won’t be something you will see a lot of on the roads of Ireland in 2011. With a 4.2-litre V8 petrol engine, it has emissions of 252 g/km meaning you will need to pay €2,100 per year in annual road tax. It is Audi’s RS5 and it is the ultra high-performance version of the pretty Audi A5 Coupé, a car which has been selling pretty well in Ireland since its launch a few years back. The car really looks the part. On first look it could just be a well-appointed A5, but the 20” alloy wheels, huge air intakes and massive exhausts at the rear are a signal of the car’s intent.

    Audi tend to reserve the RS badge for something special and the RS5 is just that. The power is absolutely ferocious. And that noise is incredible. 0-100km/h takes just 4.6 seconds and this time around Audi have employed a 7-speed S-Tronic transmission to keep all this power under control. This is a double-clutch transmission similar to Volkswagen’s DSG box and it is super smooth.

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    Naturally with such power you need to keep it under control and quattro all-wheel drive does that. It makes for limpet-like grip. If you have a heavy right foot or even if you don’t the fuel economy is almost comical. Fuel consumption on paper is 10.8 l/100km but even that is ambitious in reality. The running costs of this car would be vast. And that would be after you had paid the €102,800 price. Our test car had a further €20,000 worth of optional extras added, which included an astonishing €529 for Bluetooth, something you now get as standard on a Nissan Micra. The key, which is an ‘advanced’ key cost over a grand. So this is most certainly a car to grace a lotto win or a banker’s bonus. It is magnificent though.

    There isn’t really any need for this car in Ireland and it is impossible to explore even half of its performance legally, but for anyone with this money then it could make a very nice toy.

  • Video Blog: Hyundai i40

    June 21, 2011 @ 12:02 pm | by Michael McAleer
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  • First images appear of new Toyota Yaris

    June 16, 2011 @ 10:54 am | by Michael McAleer

    Toyota need to send in the plumbers because they have a serious leak! Images of the next Toyota Yaris have appeared on the web and by the looks of things, this new car will give the likes of Ford’s Fiesta a serious run for its money.

    Toyota is believed to be close to launching the European-spec Yaris, which will weigh at least 30kg less than its predecessor. The new Yaris is also 100mm longer, 20mm lower and has a wheelbase some 50mm longer than the outgoing generation.

    The all-new Yaris is expected to be offered with two petrol options, a 1.0-litre developing 68 horsepower and a 1.3-litre with 93 horsepower, with the latter getting start-stop function. A diesel and a hybrid version are likely to be offered as well.

    We will bring you more when we get it.

    Bigger and lighter: New Toyota Yaris

    Interior: More conventional intruments

  • BMW M5 gets official reveal

    June 15, 2011 @ 3:34 pm | by Michael McAleer

    After more leaks than a rusty bucket, the BMW M5 has now been officially revealed in all its glory. And it has been worth the wait. The new car looks awesome, with a front apron with massive air intakes for the engine and the brakes, flared arches, M “gills”, a diffuser between the right and left hand pair of twin exhaust tailpipes and 19-inch M light alloy wheels.

    Featuring a 4.4-litre V8, the new M5 will put out 560hp at 6,000rpm and a mammoth 680Nm of torque. That is a 10 per cent increase in output and a 30 per cent increase in torque over the previous model. 0-100km/h takes just 4.4 seconds and the car will reach 200km/h in just 13 seconds. Top speed will be limited to 250km/h but this can extend out to 305km/h (which is 190mph) with the M Driver’s Package.

    Power is transferred to the rear wheels via a seven-speed M Double Clutch Transmission Drivelogic and the car will feature launch control, low speed assistance and a parking mode, presumably to help with low speed manoeuvres.

    An Active M Differential enables fully variable distribution of drive between the rear wheels and two set-ups can be called up using the new M Drive button on the steering wheel.

    There is no details on pricing as yet, but the car will go on sale in November for around €110,000.

  • BMW 1 Series M Coupé Video Review

    June 2, 2011 @ 11:47 pm | by Michael McAleer
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