As we approach the end of 2019, we celebrate the best cars on sale this year. From hot hatchbacks to supercars, we’ve got it all…
The best cars 2019
Aston Martin DBS Superleggera Volante
Scary, lairy, hairy-knuckled beast of a V12-engined, high-performance car. Easy to lose it in a straight line when you put pedal to the metal, which is increasingly a rare attribute. Not for the faint-hearted, but my, she looks so pretty.
Continues to confound motoring critics: underpowered, dreadful steering, expensive, small screen, gruff diesel engine… But everyone who drives it loves it and wants one. Bags of character and a roof that you can leave at home.
Great styling, especially at the rear with the LED strip and boxy taillights, and a good range of bold colours. Composed ride, quality build feel and superb infotainment system. It’s small but feels like a lot of car for the money.
Now available with seven seats, the GLE showcases the new Mercedes connectivity system, and it’s a step change – rotating music gallery, LED interior lights that change to blue and red with the temperature and augmented-reality satnav.
Tesla Model 3
It feels like the Model 3 has been around for ages, but it’s still, amazingly, at the top of its game. No one has bettered the interior, or offered a superior rapid-charging solution. Plus, no one else has the capacity to change the indicator noise to Father Christmas’s sleigh bells, or the touchscreen to a roaring fire.
Why this hatch is consistently beaten by the Ford Fiesta and Vauxhall Corsa in the top-seller list is beyond comprehension. The new Clio is a very, very good hatchback with an exemplary ride, a bit of poke and a large touchscreen at top trim level. More people should give it a go.
This is, really, the world’s only true hybrid, in that it can cover 90 miles at motorway speed on electric power alone. Which rather proves that all other hybrids are fossil-fuel cars lugging around a battery and motor for very little reason unless you never cover more than 20 miles a day.
Ford Fiesta ST
We might actually take this over the Focus ST. Ford’s silky induction system suits the pert Fiesta, which remains the UK’s best-selling car due to its perfect blend of weight, steering, power and chassis. And price.
One of 2019’s best surprises. We encourage a test drive. A well-judged car, with subtle but brilliant engineering that has created a smooth powertrain, well-balanced steering and a very clever chassis that soaks up the rough stuff without adding too much weight. Great manual gear change, too.
You still can’t beat this car for a touch of luxury and refinement in what is an under-appreciated sector right now, with the rise in SUVs. Beautiful, light interior with soft leathers and warm woods, loads of space, large digital displays and a quiet ride.
Take the smaller of the two engines for some light-hearted, fleet-of-foot fun in a smartly tailored package. Heads-up display shows the revs in sport mode, and there are useful storage areas in this two-seater. Hurrah for a fabric hood, too.
One for petrolheads. If it’s comfort you seek from your GT, go Aston or Bentley. If it’s lightweight performance, sharp turn-ins and instant acceleration, go McLaren. This is as soft as Woking gets. Enjoy it while it lasts.
A fizzing, five-speed gearstick reminds you of how cars used to drive. There’s a wheel at each corner, no thick curving bodywork, an upright windscreen and rear seats over the rear axle. She’s small, but try stopping her traversing some serious off-road stuff. Great value for money.
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