From the Edi­tor

NZ Autocar - - Contents - KYLE CAS­SIDY

The hol­i­days have come and gone and ev­ery­one’s back in the swing of things, look­ing for­ward to a busy 2016. Will it be another record breaker in terms of car sales as 2015 was? Some say no. Toy­ota, the mar­ket leader, has al­ready pre­dicted a cool­ing of the mar­ket, while oth­ers have noted a slow down in the lux­ury seg­ment. Sales of lux­ury ve­hi­cles were the first to fall off the cliff back when the GFC muck hit the fan, so are a pos­si­ble in­di­ca­tor of what might hap­pen in the mass mar­ket this year. But even if sales don’t con­tinue to break records, we’ll still have plenty of new prod­ucts to re­view. Al­ready the launch cal­en­dar and drive di­ary is fill­ing fast. Next month, we fi­nally get a spin in the new Mus­tang lo­cally along with the 2.0-litre MX-5, 308 GT, the new Jaguar XF, BMW 7 Se­ries, Toy­ota’s For­tuna, Audi A4 and Kia Sportage. Hope­fully the mo­men­tum con­tin­ues.

It will prob­a­bly be another year packed with new SUV ar­rivals, the ve­hi­cle type again in­creas­ing its share of the mar­ket last year, though we think the generic SUV seg­ment needs to be frag­mented. There are six classes of ‘cars’ yet all SUVs, re­gard­less of size, are lumped to­gether cre­at­ing a murky pic­ture. For more on the sales break­down from 2015 see page 103. We bet utes will con­tinue to be pop­u­lar in 2016, with Ranger now of­fi­cially NZ’s favourite ve­hi­cle, and Hilux, Colorado and Navara not far be­hind. And yes, we’ll fi­nally get the Hilux and Ranger to­gether next month for a com­par­i­son test too.

There will be new tech­nol­ogy to try out later in the year when the likes of the newly re­vealed Mercedes-Benz E-Class (p22) makes its way here, fes­tooned with new self-driv­ing giz­mos. And no doubt there will be more novel ways to con­nect with the so­cial world while driv­ing. Must get around to try­ing some of those out this year. But re­ally, all that con­nec­tiv­ity stuff tends to bore me. Lucky that one of us likes tech fea­tures, so read Linklater’s in­for­ma­tive column (p26) on CarPlay, you’ll prob­a­bly learn some­thing.

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