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Coming soon: new sports cars and convertibles for 2017

Don't buy a new car until you've read this – our ultimate guide to the new models coming in 2017 and beyond

Words ByKris Culmer

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Sports cars, coupΓ©s and convertibles

Alpine A110 (late 2017)

Renault’s sporting sub-brand hasn’t built a car since 1995, but now it’s back with a sleek two-seat rival to the Porsche Cayman. The A110 has a turbocharged 249bhp 1.8-litre four-cylinder engine producing 236lb ft of torque, rear-wheel drive and an automatic gearbox; 0-60mph takes 4.5sec. The car’s light weight and race car parts should also give it very agile handling. Price (est) From Β£50,000


Aston Martin DB11 Volante (May 2018)

The new Aston Martin DB11 grand tourer is one of our favourite luxury sports coupΓ©s, behind only the Mercedes-Benz S-Class CoupΓ©. Now, there's a drop-top version, the DB11 Volante, which Aston Martin describes as its "sportiest convertible yet". It's powered exclusively by a 503bhp Mercedes-AMG 4.0-litre turbocharged V8 engine, which we prefer to the 5.2-litre V12 because it makes the DB11 lighter and better-handling. The DB11 Volante's folding soft-top roof can be lowered in 14sec and raised again in 16sec while driving at speeds of up to 31mph. Price From Β£159,900


Audi RS5 Sportback (May 2018)

Following the RS5 two-door coupΓ© is the more practical, five-door Sportback. Powered by the same 2.9-litre twin-turbocharged V6 petrol engine with 444bhp, 0-62mph should take around 4.2sec, putting it in the same ballpark as the BMW M3. The RS5 Sportback drives all four of its wheels through an eight-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox. Inside, the car’s dashboard will be identical to the RS5 coupé’s, which gets Audi’s impressive Virtual Cockpit digital instrument display as standard, as well as Alcantara and leather trim. Price (est) From Β£72,000


BMW Z4 (early 2018)

The Z4 two-seat roadster was sold from 2002 to 2016, and while it wasn't particularly sporty to drive, it did prove popular. Next year, it will be replaced by a model with all-new underpinnings, shared with the upcoming Toyota Supra hard-top coupΓ© (see below). Engines will be BMW's latest turbocharged petrols: a 2.0-litre four-cylinder with around 248bhp and a 3.0-litre six-cylinder with around 335bhp. Both will have standard rear-wheel drive and an eight-speed automatic gearbox. Pictured is the previewing Z4 Concept show car. Price (est) From Β£25,000


BMW M5 (February 2018)

The performance version of our 2017 Car of the Year, the new BMW 5 Series, will offer a choice between rear-wheel drive and optional four-wheel drive. It is due to be unveiled later this year with a developed version of BMW’s twin-turbocharged 4.4-litre V8 petrol engine under the bonnet with around 600bhp; the current car has 552bhp and 502lb ft of torque. Like that car, it will have a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission, but it will be the first M5 ever with four-wheel drive. Price From Β£89,640


BMW 8 Series (summer 2018)

BMW will revive the dormant 8 Series name after the original luxury performance coupΓ© went off sale in 1999. The new model is a four-seater of the same ilk, based on BMW's luxury 7 Series saloon, and is a rival to the Mercedes-Benz S-Class CoupΓ©. Three petrol and two diesel engines will be offered, sourced from the 7 Series, and an eight-speed automatic gearbox will be standard across the range. Four-wheel drive will be an option. After the standard 8 Series' launch, a performance M8 model with a 615bhp 4.4-litre V8 petrol engine will arrive, as will a plug-in hybrid model. Price (est) From Β£90,000


Ferrari Portofino (early 2018)

The Portofino is the most affordable Ferrari yet, replacing the California T. Like that car, it's a two-seat convertible grand tourer. The Portofino is based on a new chassis that’s claimed to make it much lighter and more rigid than the California T. It has electric power steering that’s designed to feel lighter, making the car easier to drive, and new suspension that’s said to make the ride more comfortable and the handling more responsive. Powering the Portofino is a twin-turbocharged 3.9-litre V8 petrol engine that produces 592bhp – 40bhp more than the California T – and 561lb ft of torque. The Portofino can accelerate from 0-62mph in a claimed 3.5sec and has a top speed of 200mph. Inside, the Portofino looks similar to the California T, apart from a new 10.2in infotainment screen. An electrically deployable wind deflector is said to reduce windflow into the interior by 30%, making the car quieter at higher speeds. Price (est) From Β£160,000


Ford Fiesta ST (early 2018)

Ford’s current Fiesta ST hot hatch has been our overall top hot hatch for five years in a row, thanks to its peppy engines and class-leading handling. This third-generation version looks like a dead cert to carry on that winning streak. Ford has ditched the outgoing ST’s 1.6-litre petrol engine and replaced it with a 1.5-litre three-cylinder unit, but it's actually more powerful, with 197bhp, enabling a 0-60mph time of 6.7sec, and it is also more fuel-efficient. Plus, for the first time, the driver can choose between Normal, Sport and Track driving modes to alter the responsiveness of the engine, steering and stability control. Inside, the new car gets the latest Ford infotainment system, with a new tablet-style infotainment touchcreen that sits in the centre of the console. Price (est) From Β£18,000


Ford Mustang (January 2018)

Ford's popular muscle car has been updated for 2018, with tweaks to the engine, styling, suspension, interior and exhaust. The Mustang's 5.0-litre V8 has been boosted to 444bhp from 410bhp, while the 2.3-litre Ecoboost engine has been downgraded to 286bhp from 313bhp, although performance is not affected, Ford says, due to the addition of an overboost function. A new 10-speed automatic gearbox is available with both engines. Inside, the Mustang gets more generous use of soft-touch plastics on the centre console and doors. A 'Good Neighbour' mode has also been added to quieten the car's exhaust. Safety has been boosted, too, taking the Mustang's shocking two-star Euro NCAP up to a slightly more palatable three stars. Price (est) From Β£34,000


Hyundai i30N (November 2017)

Hyundai's first ever hot hatch is an uprated version of its new i30 family hatchback. The i30N has a 2.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine with 247bhp and will initally come with a manual gearbox, with the option of an automatic expected to be added in 2018. Having been set up by a former head of BMW's M division, the i30N is fantastic to drive, with plenty of power and fantastic traction in corners. In fact, it's so much better than similarly priced rivals, such as the Volkswagen Golf GTI, that it's more of a match with the much pricer Ford Focus RS. The i30N is practical, too, and we gave the car four stars. We recommend you go for the Performance version. Price From Β£24,995


McLaren 570S Spider (late 2017)

McLaren will launch a convertible version of its 570S sports car to rival cars such as the Audi R8 Spyder. The 570S Spider has the same twin-turbocharged 3.8-litre V8 engine with 562bhp and 443lb ft of torque as the regular 570S; yet, despite its additional weight, it is just 0.1sec off the 570S’s 0-62mph time. It's fantastic yet easy to drive, which is why we gave it five stars. Price From Β£164,750


Renault MΓ©gane RS (early 2018)

The next version of the MΓ©gane hot hatch flaunts its performance with raw pace rather than an overly lairy design. However, it should be brilliant to drive, with a new, slightly more powerful 1.8-litre turbocharged petrol engine (276bhp and 288lb ft) and four-wheel steering for better agility; 0-60mph will take less than 6.0sec. Unlike its predecessor, the new MΓ©gane RS is available in five-door form only. Price (est) From Β£30,000


Toyota Yaris GRMN (December 2017)

It's becoming ever more common practice for manufacturers to launch a performance-focused version of their regular hatchbacks, and Toyota is joining that club. Along with a facelift to the Yaris, it will launch the Yaris GRMN hot hatch; GRMN is the name of Toyota's performance road car sub-brand in its home market of Japan. It will be powered by a 1.8-litre supercharged petrol engine that produces more than 205bhp, making it more powerful than most of its turbocharged rivals, including our favourite hot hatch, the Ford Fiesta ST. Price From Β£26,295


Toyota Supra (summer 2018)

A return for the legendary Supra coupΓ© after 15 years away. A sister car to the BMW Z4 roadster, it will sit above the GT86 in Toyota's sports car line-up. Its looks appear to be a modern interpretation of the previous Supra and it is powered by a BMW petrol engine and electric motors, making it a hybrid. Price (est) From Β£35,000


TVR Griffith (December 2018)

After more than a decade of lying fallow, TVR, the belovedly idiosyncratic British sports car brand, will return with a rival to the Porsche 911. A two-door sports coupΓ©, the new Griffith has a perfect 50/50 weight balance, a weight of just 1250kg and, the brand claims, excellent high-speed stability. It's powered by a 500bhp 5.0-litre V8 engine borrowed from the Ford Mustang muscle car, with drive going to the rear wheels through a six-speed manual gearbox. Top speed is over 200mph and 0-62mph will take less than 5.0sec. Price (est) From Β£70,000


Volkswagen Up GTI (March 2018)

One of our favourite city cars, the Volkswagen Up, will get a GTI hot hatch version, as with the larger Golf. Powered by a turbocharged 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol engine with 113bhp and 147lb ft, the Up GTI has a 0-62mph time of 8.8sec and a top speed of 122mph. It also gets individual styling cues and more aerodynamic parts than the standard model, with Volkswagen promising much better handling. Price (est) From Β£15,000

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