ON A CON­STANT HIGH

Geelong Advertiser - Motoring - - FRONT PAGE -

sec­onds and, given only 100 cars have been al­lo­cated for Aus­tralia, it is ex­pected to sell out fast. The more ex­pen­sive hy­brid LC500h marks Lexus’s first use of a lithium-ion bat­tery pack, giv­ing the car pack­ag­ing and power ad­van­tage over the nickel-metal hy­dride bat­ter­ies used un­til now. Its petrol V6 (220kW/248Nm) is abet­ted by elec­tric out­put of 132kW/ 300Nm. Add $15,000 for en­hance­ment pack” and bol­ster the LC with all-wheel steer­ing, vari­able ra­tio steer­ing rack, car­bon-fi­bre roof scuff plates, pow­ered front sports seats leather up­hol­stery. A lim­ited-slip diff is stan­dard on the LC500 but part of the pack for the 500h. Pric­ing has yet to be an­nounced but the LC500 is tipped to start about $190,000 be­fore on-roads.

Holden As­tra sedan, $21,490 (est) The four-door is in deal­er­ships mid-month. Pric­ing hasn’t been an­nounced but Holden is ex­pected to match its ri­vals and charge sim­i­lar pric­ing for the sedan hatch ver­sions, trans­lat­ing a circa $21,490 start­ing price. Given

is seen as the sportier vari­ant, may even be marginally cheaper. The Korean-built sedan will sell in three trim lev­els. Top-spec cars will have for­ward col­li­sion warn­ing and blind-spot alert, though none will au­tonomous emer­gency brak­ing. Its 1.4-litre turbo en­gine be paired with a sixspeed man­ual or an op­tional six-speed auto in the base LS; higher-spec mod­els will ex­clu­sively use auto. De­fault gear in­cludes re­vers­ing cam­era, park­ing sen­sors, six airbags and An­droid/Ap­ple phone mir­ror­ing. Holden has tweaked the steer­ing, sus­pen­sion sta­bil­ity con­trol soft­ware to han­dle lo­cal roads and early re­ports in­di­cate the As­tra will com­fort­ably most con­di­tions.

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