Best and worst cars from each manufacturer
(Best) The new Audi RS6 is a great all rounder, I’m surprised I didn’t mention it in ‘the only car you ever need’ article. It has great practicality, high quality interior, safe, genuinely exciting to look at, seriously quick, has some cost saving technology such as the way it shuts down 4 cylinders and most improved is the driving feel. However, despite having massively improved handling, it’s handling isn’t as impressive as a BMW M550i touring.
(Worst) The Audi A2 is a hateable car, even when it drives past you. It is gopping. It was expensive to buy and maintain, slow, diesels are unrefined and didn’t excel in any areas.
(Best) The BMW 530d is hard not to recommend, when you ignore that people think that driving diesel is almost identical to running a car on coal you really can’t fault it. It’s cheap to run, practical, has a high quality interior, great infotainment, looks good, has arguably the best badge for a car, and although it has the same fuel type, cylinder number and litres in engine as a Vauxhall Vectra, this car does not do 0-60 in 10 seconds in fact it is under 5 seconds which will rival Porsche and Lotus.
(Worst) The BMW M6 definitely didn’t uphold BMW’s reputation of great to drive cars, it was ludicrously expensive and was no better to drive than a 330d. The V10 may sound nice but was very uneconomical, being fast could be seen as a positive but what it meant is that you couldn’t use all the power available. It’s depreciation fell like rock through the air and at over 1700Kg when there were few safety features around, it was heavy despite carbon fibre construction but by far the worst thing was the way it looked, from the side and rear it was fine but the front it looked like Audi with the A2 collaborated together. It looks as if it is trying to smile. Fortunately the next generation was excellent and so is the current M8.
(Best) The Ford Puma ST is a small SUV which I’d usually look away from but it really does suit what people want today. SUV’s are very popular because of their high driving position but so are city cars because size in Britain matters a lot so this fiesta based high riding car slips into society very snugly. I’m not saying I’m not a professional motoring journalist but Whatcar? rated it best sports SUV of the year and parkers went a step further, announcing it best car of the year. Autocar quoted it is ‘well judged, versatile and fun.’ Auto express quoted ‘Ford has created the best-handling compact SUV on the market – and by some margin.’ Overall though, I’d say it is inexpensive, fun, economical thanks to a 3 cylinder petrol that can even deactivate one cylinder, practical and stands out especially if you spend an extra £525 on some very literal paint colours such as ‘Fantastic Red’ and ‘Mean green’, I checked it out on their configurator and it was stunning.
(Worst) The Ford Mustang is a full on muscle car and if your in the market for one whatever you do, don’t but a 2.3l Eco boost, buy a focus if you want that engine. However, in the 70s there was an even worse Mustang called the Mustang 2. It was during the fuel crisis so it was when Detroit went down and Tokyo went up. Therefore, it was the first time it wasn’t fitted with a V8 engine. Hang on, Mercedes do a 4 cylinder in the A class with 415BHP. Surely that power would be acceptable, it certainly would if you ask me. But this car with the same number of cylinders, produced 88 BHP which is less than the cheapest car in Britain, the Dacia Sandero. It was noisy, unpractical, poor to drive and looked like it was a blend of lots of other car designs.
(Best) Surprisingly, I haven’t Nominated the AMG a45s I’ve chosen something which is a lot less interesting. The GLB. It is a family SUV which sounds like a recipe for a poor to drive car with unmatched dullness. It may have the practical stuff ticked, a seven seat option and a huge boot in a car 7mm shorter than a Peugeot 5008. It may be boxy but its design makes it looked rugged and oddly, curved. At just under £37,000 it may seem pricey but next to a Nissan Qashqai Tekna+ starting at £37,835 it seems like bargain. Saying that, I’d go for the 220d which does cost £41,195 but do remember that SUV’s like this won’t depreciate much. If you want a fast, small yet practical car there is only one option-the GLB 35 and you won’t be frustrated by that because it is a tuned down version you get in the A45s and comes with lots of standard kit and tech across all models.
(Worst) I really wanted to like the Mercedes SLC but you really can’t. The old SLK held a great reputation, but this model is mainly let down by the way it drives. It also had a dated interior, cost a lot to run, was unbelievably impractical and most people bought the 250 diesel not the better petrol’s. The only reason you’d buy on e is if you parked it outside your house and never used it because it looked so much better than the equivalent Audi TT or BMW Z4.
(Best) Vauxhall is well-known for being far behind in its cars it makes a lot of the time but the Astra VXR was one we can congratulate. In a quick summary, it looked amazing, better than Fords, well-priced at £27,000, justified this price even more with 0-60 in 5.8 seconds, comfortable, cheap to run, was relatively practical and the interior was well-designed too.
(Worst) Unfortunately, for Vauxhall, there are quite a few bad cars that they made. The worst currently, though is the Crossland X which is the dreariest Vauxhall (after the Vectra) ever made. Cars such as the Renault Captur at least tried to be exciting. The Crossland X is also at a disadvantage because of other makers as small SUV’s aren’t exactually rare. The Ford Puma is the biggest threat as I’ve already mentioned above. It disappoints in every way the Puma succeeds. It’s appalling to drive and looks like a fish tank on wheels. They can’t even get their colours right-one is called diamond black.
(Best) The VW Arteon doesn’t only have a pretty face but is also practical, it was rated WhatCar? best coupe for practicality because it has a hatchback style tailgate (similar to a Ford Mondeo saloon). It has 563l of space and with the seats down, a whopping 1,557l of space. In comparison a Mercedes-Benz C-class coupe has only 380l of boot space. So does all this big bott eat into passenger space… no is the answer. There is no better car in its class for carrying people in the rear as headromm is respectable and legroom makes you wonder if you’re in luxury saloon. Its also safe (5 out of 5 from euro N cap scoring 96% in Adult occumpancy, quiet (for motorway cruising), well-equipped, well-built, excellent infotainment and despite being heavier and larger than a BMW 4 series gran coupe- running costs are the same. I’d go for the TDI 190 due to it simply having better performance than the regular car (8 seconds VS 9.1). But for excitement, the R is for you doing 0-60 in less than 5 seconds, it rivals the BMW 430i gran coupe.
(Worst) The MK4 VW Golf GTI is by a long way the best car on this list of worst cars but it unlike the other cars had a reputation to hold as it was the most popular hot hatch by a long way. It was simply average. Firstly, is the weight which was drastically increased, this makes it have worse handling, comfort and performance which was rather slow. It also looked uninteresting, slightly obese and unexciting. The MK5 was quite the opposite. The following generations were much better, especially the MK7 but even today the MK8 could be better, and it has taken its toll. Currently the second most popular car in the UK is the Mercedes-Benz A-class, a key rival to the VW Golf but the VW Golf has now dropped to eighth because it is more exciting to look at, sit in and drive and at equal prices people will prefer a pointed star. For the mark 9 then, it needs to be much better than the Mercedes-Benz A-class, Audi A3 and BMW 1 series to justify its price.