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SKODA FABIA: Fabia-lous version of popular seller

1600091_FabiaTwinVALUE for money’ and class leading space – two of the virtues that have built up a worldwide following for Skoda and their range of cars.

The Czech manufacturer has certainly benefitted from being under the VW Group umbrella in recent times and cars like the Fabia have been the mainstay of their success, playing a crucial role in moving the brand along to what it is today.

Sales worldwide of the Fabia total over four million in its 19 year span, and last year the UK was Skoda’s fourth biggest market for Fabia with 19,400 registered. A lot of us must think they’re Fabia-lous….

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MERCEDES-BENZ A180 d AMG Line: family hatch with accent on luxury

1512007_17C829_040AS the Monty Python chaps would say, now for something completely different…..

No longer does the Mercedes-Benz entry level model fall over and wave its wheels in anguish at the sight of a roadside Elk.

To be fair, it hasn’t for some time now and the latest fourth generation model to carry the name is so well sorted it’s a bit of a revelation.

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SUZUKI SWIFT SPORT: light weight but not light on involvement

1564363_SU_2670ITS Champion Yellow body colour gives the new Suzuki Swift Sport the distinct appearance of a motoring high-viz jacket.

It’s the metal equivalent of the sort of apparel a top athlete might use when training, which is quite appropriate really, because it’s a great little runner….

Suzuki’s third generation sport supermini has a new front end that gives it a look all of its own.

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LEXUS LC 500: outrageous styling from the kings of staid….

1293007_lexus-lc500-news2LEXUS have finally done it – consigned some of the staid designs of their earlier foray over here to the museum of motoring and let the posh Toyota really come of age.

The LC 500 is, quite simple, one of the smartest machines you’re likely to come across in your daily meanderings.

The view through the door mirrors from the driver’s seat highlights its muscular stance and picks out rear arches that are bigger than the shoulder pads on an 80s glam rock group.

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HYUNDAI KONA: compact and roomy SUV joins the fray

1469822_Hyundai_Kona_060CUT-THROAT just isn’t an adequate word when it comes to the compact SUV market these days.

Crammed might be better, because you’d be hard pressed to find a manufacturer who doesn’t have one vying for your attention in the pages of their glossy brochures or on-line.

It’s been too good a gig to miss out on, and the British public just can’t seem to get enough of them. They’re all built on sound underpinnings – SEAT’s Arona is a pumped up Ibiza, Kia’s Stonic has morphed from the Rio and Hyundai’s Kona has its origins in the decent i20.

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DACIA DUSTER: look the other way for a bargain buy

1577148_All-New Dacia Duster Comfort SCe 115 4x2 EMBARGO 12H00 220618 (18)_v1_currentIT’S at the opposite end of the spectrum from the mainstream compact SUVs but Dacia’s revised Duster has a couple of things going in its favour.

The first is it’s a stylish SUV for the price of a supermini. And the second is it’s new price is around half that of a well specced similar machine from the likes of SEAT or Nissan.

Which is good news for those on a tighter budget who still crave the reassurance that a new car’s warranty brings with it (three years/60,000 miles in this case).

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VOLVO XC40: another dose of Scandinavian excellence

1508004_219662_Volvo_XC40_crowned_What_Car_Car_of_the_Year_2018THERE used to be an unwritten rule that to qualify for Volvo ownership you had to be closer to your pension than your youth – but not any more.

Cars that decades ago has the aerodynamic qualities of a breezeblock are allofasudden ‘de riguer’ in the desirability stakes, because while they still major on their commendable safety attributes, they’re also now building a big chunk of style into them.

Take this XC40. This is not a car for someone in their motoring dotage, who will only venture out onto the roads twice a week – once for the pension on a Thursday and the other to be at the head of a slow moving snake of traffic on a Sunday afternoon.

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JEEP COMPASS: an SUV that gets right to the point

1485238_9compassIT looks like Jeep have got the point with their all new Compass…..

Its predecessor didn’t really set the world alight when it launched into the soft roader sector of the UK market, but the latest version seems a bit more intent on putting the tribulations of the past firmly in the past.

Those of us with long memories and dates from a past century on our passports will possibly think of American GIs smoking huge cee-gars and hanging onto the top of the windscreen for dear life at the mention of the word Jeep.

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