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Review Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer Elite Nav 1.6 200 2019 UK - The shift from diesel back to petrol now finds itself in unfamiliar territory: a big, mass market family estate, the kind bought almost solely by black pump visitors for the past two decades or so.


This 197bhp 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol is now available in the Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer, equipped with a six-speed automatic as a range-topping petrol drivetrain after the blink-and-you-miss it GSi version was dropped from sale last year. The engine first arrived in the Insignia last autumn in manual form, following a debut in the Astra a few years ago.


Diesel uptake for the Insignia has typically been around 95%; unsurprising, given how cars like the Insignia tend to notch up big miles in the hands of the fleet drivers and families who drive them. Yet Vauxhall, like all other car makers in the UK, is noticing a shift away from diesel after 'you know what', and is responding accordingly with more petrol alternatives like we’re testing here.


Potent petrol engine brings impressive drivability to the Insignia, yet the economy is unlikely to win over anyone switching from diesel





Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer Elite Nav 1.6 200 Turbo auto specification 


Where Suffolk Price £32,350 On sale Now Engine 4 cyls, 1598cccc, turbocharged, petrol Power 197bhp at 4700-5500rpm Torque 221lb ft at 1700-4700rpm Gearbox 6-spd auto Kerb weight 1552kg Top speed 143mph 0-60mph 7.7sec Fuel economy 42.2mpg (NEDC combined) CO2 154g/km Rivals Ford Mondeo, Volkswagen Passat

Review Vauxhall Insignia Sports Tourer Elite Nav 1.6 200 2019 UK

Review Citroen C5 Aircross Puretech 180 2019 UK - Citroën has been clever about the positioning of its quirky new C5 Aircross within the wider PSA Group SUV range.


At 4.5m in length, it’s ever so slightly longer than its Peugeot 3008 and Vauxhall Grandland X brethren, but not so long that it steps on the larger, seven-seat Peugeot 5008’s toes. I’d wager that could be a slightly problematic situation. That Citroën says it has no plans to launch a seven-seat SUV of its own suggests it might think so too - if you read between the lines, of course.


But anyway. This isn’t the first time we’ve driven the C5 Aircross, and you may well have already pored over Lawrence Allan’s dispatch from Morrocco. However, it is the first time we’ve been able to try one out on home soil, and is a good opportunity to see if the C5 Aircross’ trick Progressive Hydraulic Cushioning suspension (which is available as standard across the C5 Aircross range) deals with British roads any better than it did with the questionable Tarmac in and around Marrakech. 


Being based on the PSA Group’s ubiquitous EMP2 platform, it comes as little surprise that this particular C5 Aircross is powered by the equally ubiquitous 1.6-litre, four-cylinder Puretech petrol engine. Here, it develops 178bhp at 5500rpm, while its 184lb ft well of torque can be tapped into from as little as 1650rpm. This is all directed straight to the front wheels through an eight-speed automatic transmission - no manual ‘box is available with this particular motor.

Citroën's new C5 Aircross is set up with comfort in mind, but it doesn't cope quite as well with battered British roads as we'd like





Citroën C5 Aircross Puretech 180 Flair+ 


Where Berkshire, UK Price £30,725 On sale Now Engine 4cyl, 1598cc, turbocharged, petrol Power 178bhp at 5500rpm Torque 184lb ft at 1650rpm Gearbox 8-spd automatic Kerb weight 1430kg Top speed 134mph 0-62mph 8.2sec Fuel economy 39.6mpg CO2 131g/km Rivals Peugeot 3008, Volkswagen Tiguan, Mazda CX-5

Review Citroen C5 Aircross Puretech 180 2019 UK

Review Jaguar XF Sportbrake 300 R-Sport 2019 UK - You might reasonably expect Jaguar’s F-Type and XF Sportbrake estate models to share few major mechanicals. You’d be wrong, though, because the two cars already take their eight-speed transmission and steering hardware from the same shelf, and now the same can be said for the engine.


Along with a subtle aesthetic refresh, for 2019 Jaguar has equipped its only estate derivative (the XE remains saloon-only) with the same punchy turbocharged 2.0-litre Ingenium engine you’ll find in the entry-level F-Type.


The principal numbers are identical, with 296bhp at 5500rpm and 295lb ft from 1500rpm. And while it’s still possible for customers in the US to get an XF Sportbrake with Jaguar’s supercharged 3.0-litre V6 and 375bhp, in the UK, because of new WLTP regulations, the downsized option tested here is now the most powerful petrol-powered variant.


Jaguar's sleek estate gains an engine shared with the entry-level F-Type 




Jaguar XF Sportbrake 300 R-Sport specification


Where Buckinghamshire, UK Price £44,700 On sale Now Engine 4 cyls, 1997cc, turbocharged, petrol Power 296bhp at 5500rpm Torque 295lb ft at 1500-4500rpm Gearbox 8-spd automatic Kerb weight 1763kg Top speed 155mph 0-62mph 5.7sec Fuel economy 36.2mpg CO2 155g/km Rivals Audi A6 Avant 50 TDI, BMW 540i Touring xDrive

Review Jaguar XF Sportbrake 300 R-Sport 2019 UK

Review Nissan Micra N-Sport 2019 - Remember the Micra 160 SR? A gold star and extra nerd points if you do. Launched back in 2005, it was Nissan’s first and (until today) only attempt to push its supermini into the 'warm hatch' sphere in Europe. 

To say it was unsuccessful is an understatement. Contemporary reviews suggest it was actually pretty competitive. But it seemed that car’s cutesy styling combined with the Micra’s driving school image did it no favours for enthusiasts on a budget. 


But perhaps the latest generation is a better fit, with its more grown up, angular design and slightly more upmarket positioning. Nissan clearly reckons so, which is why it’s launched the N-Sport onto the market. 


Far from just a cynical trim level, the firm is using it as the basis to introduce a new 1.0-litre engine, also available in other higher-end trims. All cars with the new engine get a bespoke chassis tune, lowered suspension and a new steering rack, while the N-Sport model gets subtle exterior styling tweaks and and natty Alcantara trim on the dash and seats. 


Alongside this, model year upgrades include a newly designed infotainment system with additional connectivity, and a new smartphone app that allows some limited operation of vehicle features.



Nissan adds 117bhp 'warm hatch' model to Micra range as part of mid-life revisions. Does it transform the supermini?




Nissan Micra N-Sport DIG-T 117


Where Lisbon Price £19,005 On sale Now Engine 999cc, 3cyls Power 117bhp at 5250rpm Torque 132lb ft (148lb ft overboost) at 1750-4000rpm Gearbox six-speed manual Kerb weight N/A Top speed 121mph 0-62mph 9.9sec Fuel economy 56.5mpg CO2 114g/km Rivals Ford Fiesta ST-Line, Seat Ibiza FR

Review Nissan Micra N-Sport 2019

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