The pick of the new SUV crop
There's a whole host of new crossovers and 4x4s coming our way in the next few months, writes Geraldine Herbert
Citroen C3 Aircross - The C3 Picasso is no more and has been transformed into a funky crossover that will compete with rivals that include Peugeot's 2008, the Nissan Juke and Renault Captur.
Powering this compact SUV will be a choice of three-cylinder PureTech 82, 110 and 130 petrol engines and two diesels, a BlueHDi 100 and 120. The 2018 C3 Aircross comes in 90 fun colours plus four roof colours for two-tone models, four 'Colour Packs' and five highly distinctive interior design schemes. Funky design is not at the cost of practicality; inside it promises competitive space with 520 litres of boot space with the seats up and a very impressive 1,289 litres with them down - so more than enough for some flat packs from IKEA.
The Kona - a small, stylish SUV - will sit below the Tucson in the Hyundai range. Designed to give rivals like the Renault Captur, Toyota CH-R and Peugeot 2008 stiff competition, a 1.6-litre diesel engine is likely to be offered. Unlike many rivals, there will be four-wheel-drive and seven-speed transmission options available along with a host of advanced technological features to woo even the most tech-savvy. An electric Kona is expected to make its global debut at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show.
The E-pace is Jaguar's second venture into SUV territory and will be followed next year by the all-electric I-Pace. The mid-sized premium SUV goes on sale early next year and is likely to be priced at just under €40,000. Rivals include the BMW X1 and Audi Q3. Inside, the cabin offers very generous space and a boot that's capable of swallowing 577 litres of luggage. The E-Pace is the first Jaguar to feature the company's next-generation Head-Up Display (HUD) technology. Powering the new SUV will be a choice of two petrol and three diesel 2-litre Ingenium engines. With good looks, luxury and power, the new E-pace certainly appears to be an enticing new offering.
Kia expects to steal sales from the likes of the Nissan Juke, Peugeot 2008 and Hyundai Kona when the Stonic arrives later this year. The car is immediately recognisable as a Kia thanks to key signature design elements, such as the 'tiger-nose' grille and is described as their "most customisable Kia ever", with 20 different two-tone paint combinations and five roof colours to choose from. Sitting beneath the Niro, Sportage and Sorento in the range, this compact SUV sports black plastic cladding, roof bars and a raised ride height. Inside, a wide range of driver assistance and safety systems will be available, including a head-up display, collision avoidance and a seven-inch infotainment screen will be standard on all versions. Engines will include a turbo 1-litre T-GDI petrol (120PS), a 1.25-litre turbo and a 1.4-litre naturally aspirated petrol, as well as a 1.6l diesel.
Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross
Mitsubishi will expand its SUV range with a new mid-sized Eclipse Cross to take on the Seat Ateca, Toyota C-HR, Peugeot 3008, as well as the segment-leading Nissan Qashqai. Sitting between the ASX crossover and the big seven-seater Outlander in the Mitsubishi line-up, the new SUV is slightly longer than the Qashqai at 4,405mm. Only one engine will be offered initially - the new 1.5 direct injection turbo-charged petrol engine - and an updated 2.2 diesel engine will join the range later. The Eclipse Cross is due in Ireland early in 2018. Prices are not yet confirmed.
Opel Grandland X
Sharing a platform with Peugeot's 3008 and Citroen's C5 Aircross, Opel's third and largest SUV will sit above both the Mokka X and the Crossland X in their line-up. At 4.48 metres long it should certainly be spacious, with plenty of room for up to five people. Luggage space is also particularly generous, with boot space of 514 litres and up to 1,652 litres with the seats folded. Safety systems included as standard are Adaptive Cruise Control with pedestrian detection Automatic Emergency Braking, Driver Drowsiness Alert and Advanced Park Assist and Grip Control. Powering the new SUV will be a diesel engine and a plug-in hybrid will also be offered.
Seat will join the small SUV craze with the Arona. This distinctive-looking small SUV is based on the same platform as the new Ibiza but the suspension gives better ground clearance and a slightly higher look. At 1,000kg the new Arona is one of the lightest in its class. The engine range is shared with the Ibiza and on offer is a 95hp 1-litre turbo three-cylinder petrol, with a 115hp version and a 150hp 1.5-litre. For diesel buyers there is a 1.6-litre engine. The Arona won't be the last SUV from SEAT when it arrives in Ireland in November - a large SUV will also join the range in 2018.
Skoda's new Karoq will arrive in dealerships nationwide in early December, just in time for the 181 sales. A replacement for the very popular Yeti, the engine line-up is likely to include a 1.0-litre TSI 3cyl petrol (113bhp) and possibly a 1.5-litre TSI (148bhp). Diesel options are a 1.6-litre TDI (113bhp) and a 2-litre TDI (148bhp and 186bhp). There will be two- and four-wheel-drive versions. The Karoq is a slightly bigger car than the Yeti and inside there is room for five and the 521-litre boot expands to 1,630 litres with the rear seats folded. Boasting a length of 4.4m and 2.6m wheelbase, it is likely to offer best in class for head-, knee- and leg-room. Looking very much like a scaled down Kodiaq, the Karoq looks set to strike a very appealing balance between practicality, quality and style.
Launching here in November, the new Subaru XV promises to be more refined and capable with much better handling. It is built on the Subaru Global Platform, which will underpin all of the brand's new models. Powering the range will be an all-new version of the 2.0-litre four-cylinder boxer engine with direct fuel injection and a 1.6-litre four-cylinder boxer engine. A revised Lineartronic transmission now comes standard with driver-selectable X-Mode to provide even better wheel control on slippery surfaces and steep inclines. The second-generation XV comes with a host of safety features including EyeSight Driver Assist Technology, a driving support system that can anticipate an imminent collision and react by initiating a series of warnings and avoidance measures. With smart looks, this capable off roader is a promising addition to the Subaru line-up.
The T-Roc is part of a major Volkswagen SUV offensive that promises 19 SUVs in their line-up by 2025 and will compete with the likes of the Renault Captur and Peugeot 2008 but also larger compact SUVs like the Nissan Qashqai. VW's smallest SUV will be available with a variety of engines - three diesel and three petrol - plus the option of DSG semi-automatic transmissions and four-wheel-drive.
Next year will see the addition of a 1.5-litre DSG 150bhp and a 1.6-litre 115bhp diesel to the T-Roc range. Prices are likely to start under €26,000 when it arrives here in December and three spec levels - Trendline, Comfortline and Highline - will be available. Volkswagen has high hopes for the new T-Roc and reckon over time it might even outsell the Golf.
Hoping to emulate the success of the XC90 and XC60, a new scaled-down SUV, the XC40, is to join the Volvo range in 2018. The closest competitors will be the Audi Q2, MINI Countryman and BMW X1. Little details are known about the new XC40 but Volvo are claiming it will be the safest vehicle in its segment with features such as Volvo on Call, which automatically alerts the emergency services in case of an accident, Pilot Assist, City Safety system, Run-off Road Protection and Mitigation. The new premium SUV is likely to be revealed by Volvo next month.