100 hot new cars - part 3 - Coupes and convertibles part 2

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  • All the star cars coming in 2011-12
  • Coupes to sports cars
  • 2011-12 launch calendar, too
Toyota/Subaru coupé
What is it? An affordable rear-wheel-drive coupé
Estimated price from £15,000
On sale 2012 (est)

Toyota and Subaru are planning to launch their most exciting new car in years. The new rear-wheel-drive coupé is a joint development between the two, and both versions are expected to closely resemble Toyota’s FT-86 concept car.

It’s unclear yet what each car will be called, but the pair will share many parts. There will be styling differences, but these are expected to be limited to bespoke front and rear ends.

Both cars are expected to be powered by a 2.0-litre Subaru petrol engine, but Toyota is likely to tweak it for better emissions, while Subaru is rumoured to be putting its emphasis on extra power. Toyota is also believed to be considering a petrol/electric hybrid version.

It will have seating for four, and the dash is expected to have a futuristic look, with the controls on pods grouped around the steering wheel.

Volkswagen Bluesport Roadster
What is it? A fun, low-emissions roadster
Estimated price from £25,000
On sale 2012

VW’s Bluesport concept car was unveiled at the Detroit motor show back in January 2009, and this was no pie-in-the-sky show car. With proper mechanical parts borrowed from various other VW models, and interior and exterior designs that require only the tiniest tweaks, the sooner it hits showrooms the better, we think.
With a 178bhp version of VW’s 2.0 TDI engine under the bonnet driving the rear wheels, the Bluesport promises to be as green as it is sporty with an average of over 65mpg and CO2 of 113g/km.

Maserati Granturismo MC Stradale
What is it? Race car-inspired high-performance Maserati range-topper
Estimated price £105,000 (est)
On sale Spring 2010

Maserati is renowned for its elegant road cars, but it has motorsport pedigree, too. The two come together for its range-topping new model, the Granturismo MC Stradale.

Based on the Granturismo S, inspiration comes from Maserati’s Trofeo Granturismo MC and GT4 race cars. Its 444bhp is generated by the familiar 4.7-litre V8, while the car has been lightened by 110kg; Maserati quotes a top speed of over 186mph and 0-62mph in 4.6sec.

There are new bumpers, vents in the front wings, sculpted sills and a rear spoiler.

Mini Coupé/Roadster
What are they? Sportier, two-seat versions of the latest Mini
Estimated price from £18,000
On sale Summer 2011

Mini's family of small cars just keeps getting bigger. Unlike the recently launched family-friendly Countryman, however, the latest additions stay close to the original car’s ethos of compact dimensions and fun.

The Coupé and Roadster models are closely related and are based on the current three-door hatchback that’s the bread-and-butter of the Mini range. The front of each car is all-but identical to the hatchback’s, but colour co-ordinated front grille bars give the newcomers a subtle twist, while a lower roofline and more steeply angled front windscreen lends them a sportier look.

The Coupé has a fixed metal roof with a contrasting panel at the top and wraparound windows that flow smoothly from the side to the rear of the car. The Roadster has a simple folding fabric roof, along with a saloon-style boot opening rather than the Coupé’s tailgate. Inside, both will share most interior parts with the Mini hatchback. Apart, that is, from the rear seats: both are two-seaters only.

With mechanical parts shared with the hatchback, both cars should
be fun to drive but cheap to run, thanks to low fuel consumption and
CO2 emissions. The engine range for each is expected to mirror that of the hatchback, so you can expect 1.6-litre petrols and diesels.

Prices have yet to be confirmed, but we reckon the Coupé’s prices will start at around £18,000 and the Roadster’s will be a little higher.

Both will compete with entry-level versions of the Audi TT, while the Coupé will have the likes of the Honda CR-Z and VW Scirocco in its sights and the Roadster could be the most competitive rival yet for the Mazda MX-5.

Volkswagen Jetta Coupé
What is it? Sleek, three-door version of VW’s new Jetta
Estimated price from £20,000
On sale 2012

VW is considering adding another coupé to its line-up. The new Jetta Coupé will be less overtly sporty than the Scirocco and would potentially provide a cheaper alternative to those considering a BMW 3 Series.

The new model is expected to go on sale in the US during 2011 and will closely resemble the New Compact Coupé unveiled at the Detroit motor show in January 2010. Only minor adaptations will be needed from the concept car, so you can expect a smart, sharply styled three-door body that’s a fraction wider and lower than the saloon.

The concept car also previewed the possible introduction of a hybrid powertrain to the VW line-up – it uses a 1.4 TSI petrol engine that works in tandem with a 27bhp electric motor integrated with the gearbox. VW claims combined fuel economy of 67.3mpg and CO2 of 98g/km.

In brief…
Hyundai Genesis
Hyundai is still pondering whether to bring the Genesis Coupé to the UK. If it does come here it’ll have rear-wheel drive and either a turbocharged 207bhp four-cylinder engine or a 302bhp V6. Expect a starting price of £20k.


What's your most exciting car of 2011? Take part in our Car of the Year poll.

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100 hot new cars - part 3 - Performance and sports cars part 1

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