Holden will have a new Spark on sale here next month. It’s said to be the first of Holden’s ‘next-generation product’ and along with fresh styling, gains new safety and tech features. “The arrival of the European-sourced Astra, Cascada and Insignia last year signalled a new and exciting direction for Holden’s future product story. That story continues this year with the all-new Holden Spark, which we expect to really shake-up the growing micro-car segment,” said Holden New Zealand Managing Director, Kristian Aquilina.
The new Spark sits on a fresh platform with a longer wheelbase for improved passenger room, and with a reduction in overall height the Spark is better proportioned, more stylish. Inside, Holden is promising a rise in quality with upgraded materials. This micro-mini gets its spark from a new 1.4-litre petrol four producing 73kW and 128Nm of torque. While designed primarily in GM’s South Korean facility, it’s said that Holden Australia engineers had ‘a significant involvement’ in the development of the Spark’s suspension.
Holden’s Director of Vehicle Performance, Ian Butler, said “We have been working with GM Korea since the beginning of the program and were able to collaborate to ensure the car is agile and nimble in urban environments whilst remaining composed and comfortable on the open road. Key to developing the drive characteristics was a significant round of testing and development conducted by our engineers at our Lang Lang Proving Ground in Melbourne.”
Safety wise, Spark will feature six air bags and ESC while the LT model will get a rear view camera. On the technology front, the Spark will offer connectivity via both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. It will also be available with a range of genuine accessories which Holden says will make it ‘the most individually-customisable Holden ever. Expect a full report from the launch next month.
Subaru’s XV Crossover gets a few MY16 updates for the new year. These include new 17-inch wheel designs, a restyled front grille and bumper, a shark fin antenna, a black rear spoiler and clear LED combination rear lamps. The 2.0i-L and 2.0i-S also add chrome door shoulder moulding. There are two new blue colours too, Dark Blue Pearl and Hyper Blue. Inside the 2.0i-L and 2.0i-S gain Siri compatibility and sat nav with three years of complimentary map updates. The 2.0i-S also adds a smart key.
And until the end of March, Subaru is offering a Thule roofbox on all new 2016 XVs for just $20, while stocks last.