Mercury (Hobart) - Motoring - - FIRST DRIVE -

PRICE The ES Lux­ury is down by al­most $3900 to $59,888 plus on-roads de­spite ex­tra gear. The Sports Lux­ury has risen by al­most $3000 to $74,888.

TECH­NOL­OGY A head-up dis­play, wire­less phone charg­ing, traf­fic sign recog­ni­tion and lane-keep as­sist now are stan­dard on all ES ver­sions. Sports Lux­ury adds adap­tive high beam head­lamps, rear cross-traf­fic alert and pow­ered rear seats.

PER­FOR­MANCE Com­bined power from the hy­brid lay­out is rated at 160kW, up by 9kW from the old model. Of­fi­cial fuel use is down from 5.5 litres/100km to 4.6 litres.

DRIV­ING A new MacPherson front and mul­ti­link rear plus rack-mounted power-steer­ing gives the ES im­proved agility, though steer­ing feel is still muted.

DE­SIGN This car is 60mm longer, 5mm lower and 45mm wider, sit­ting on the same mod­u­lar chas­sis as the Toy­ota Camry. Rear head and legroom is up and a 12.3-inch in­fo­tain­ment screen re­places the eight-inch unit.

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