The Week That Was - Kia Optima Lancer Evo Final Edition Hyundai Santa Fe Photo:
Trevor Collett | Nov, 16 2015 | 0 Comments

Kia's second-generation Optima midsize sedan arrived this week, sporting the same handsome styling cues as before but with new sheet metal, lights and bumpers giving it a thoroughly modern look.

That's not all that's changed though. The range structure has been narrowed to just two models - the base Si and top-spec GT - and there's now a powerful turbo engine under the bonnet of the range-topper.

Prices have also moved north by a few thousand, but that's balanced out by a specification list that's one of the most generous in the segment.

For Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution fans, the last chance to purchase the performance hero in Australia is unfolding now.

Announced in May, the final dig for the all-wheel-drive turbocharged sedan wears the fitting name of Lancer Evolution X Final Edition.

Only 150 customers in Australia will have the chance to secure a Final Edition, and each will be rewarded with the highest engine output the Evo has ever offered here.

Hyundai Australia has revised its popular Santa Fe SUV for the 2016 model year, sprucing up its exterior with new bumpers, lights, grille and wheels, adding new trim to the interior and bringing more equipment to the mid and high-grade variants.

The changes also come with some modest price movements. Though there are no changes to the base model Santa Fe Active's price, the Elite and Highlander variants get price hikes of $1500 and $2750 respectively.

But that's balanced out by the more generous standard equipment list, which also sees the top-shelf Highlander equipped with autonomous emergency braking for the first time.

In other news, the NSW Government revealed its speed and red light camera programs are raking in more revenue than ever before, despite a spike in the road toll so far for 2015.

The first images of the 2017 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class leaked online this week, ahead of an official unveiling at the LA Auto Show.

Peugeot, Citroen And DS launched the MapCare program in Australia, offering free map upgrades alongside scheduled servicing for the first three years of ownership.

Land Rover officially unveiled its Range Rover Evoque Convertible, a car it describes as the world’s first luxury compact SUV convertible.

Ford tipped that an even hotter version of its anticipated Focus RS hatch could be on the way as a limited edition model.

A new hard-core version of the Lamborghini Huracan was tipped for an appearance at the LA Auto Show, featuring a rear-wheel-drive layout.

Volkswagen revealed a new ‘goodwill’ program for customers in the US, in the wake of the dieselgate emissions scandal.

Kia released the first teaser pics for its new large Cadenza sedan, but this is one Australian customers are unlikely to see in local showrooms.

Fiat unveiled its Triton-based Fullback pickup to compete against the likes of Toyota’s HiLux and the Ford Ranger, ahead of its appearance at the Dubai Motor Show.

Honda launched its end-of-year sale in Australia, offering extended warranty periods, free registration, free CTP insurance and more.



We drove the 2015 BMW 7 Series this week, impressed with its impeccably finished interior and on-road dynamics - the very definition of sumptuous modern luxury.

In case you missed it earlier, the 2016 Hyundai Santa Fe Series 2 arrived in Australia this week and we drove the ‘more polished’ SUV this week.

Another new arrival was the 2016 Kia Optima, and we found the Korean carmaker has taken the Optima upmarket with a new two-model line-up and a great new turbocharged petrol engine option.

Staying with Kia, and we found the 2016 Kia Carnival Si Diesel is the comfiest of crowd carriers, ably backed-up by a torquey diesel engine.

We found the 2016 Subaru WRX has returned the 'Rex' to greatness, and its $38,990 starting price makes for great value performance car buying.

“Just how tough is this rig?”, we asked, as we put the 2015 Mazda BT-50 XTR Freestyle properly through its paces in the outback. Check out our review.

The 2015 Audi TT Sport quattro S-Tronic offers quality, pace and grace - the trifecta for a sports coupe and all yours from $77,950 plus on-roads.

We found the 2015 Ford Focus Titanium delivers a balanced approach to handling and comfort that isn’t not too demanding for casual drivers, but with enough zest and sporting appeal to avoid the ‘vanilla’ tag.

Finally, you asked for it so we delivered. The Toyota Prado Kakadu takes on Ford’s new Everest Titanium in our Large 4WD Showdown comparison test. Check it out.

And that’s… the week that was.

Filed under 2015 News the week that was
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