Baby SUV boomers

Herald Sun - Motoring - - LAUNCH PAD -

TOY­OTA C-HR

Toy­ota’s long-awaited en­trant to the baby SUV seg­ment is due in show­rooms next month. Buy­ing one won’t be easy.

Cars­guide un­der­stands Toy­ota has ex­tremely lim­ited stock ar­riv­ing this year, so keen buy­ers might not have a vast choice of colour and op­tions.

The C-HR is Toy­ota’s an­swer to the Mazda CX-3 and Honda HR-V.

Un­der the bon­net of this un­con­ven­tional de­sign is a 1.2litre four-cylin­der turbo petrol en­gine matched to a six-speed man­ual or con­tin­u­ously vari­able trans­mis­sion. There are cur­rently no plans to in­tro­duce the hy­brid ver­sion (sold in Europe) or the 2.0-litre (sold in the US).

There will be front and all­wheel-drive vari­ants.

Prices are ex­pected to range from $25,000 to $35,000, a touch on the high side.

ISUZU D-MAX

The D-Max ute gets a mi­nor facelift next month, with an up­date for the 3.0-litre turbo diesel to meet emis­sions stan­dards. It’s un­clear whether that trans­lates to ex­tra power or torque.

The styling changes are sub­tle, too, with a new notch in the grille and head­lights.

The big changes are ex­pected to be on price and equip­ment, with Isuzu re­align­ing some vari­ants with newer ri­vals. Ex­pect to see a rear cam­era in wider use but not Ap­ple Car Play.

HOLDEN TRAX AND BARINA

The Barina hatch and the baby Trax SUV get a new nose and a few mi­nor tweaks for 2017.

Both are built in South Korea, with en­gines car­ry­ing over. Ap­ple Car Play and An­droid Auto are now stan­dard. As the changes amount to a nip and tuck, ex­pect prices to stay sharp.

HYUNDAI I30

A new i30 is due in April. As with the re­cently re­leased Elantra sedan, it is a big step up com­pared with the cur­rent model, with a tablet-style dis­play screen and bet­ter qual­ity fit, fin­ish and ma­te­ri­als.

Keep an eye on the price. Hyundai launched the Elantra with pre­mium pric­ing — nearly $28,000 drive-away — and buy­ers stayed away. The Elantra has since been wound back to a much more re­al­is­tic $22,990 drive-away with auto.

TOY­OTA C-HR

ISUZU D-MAX HOLDEN BARINA

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