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This week’s car news: 11-17 February

We publish a lot of car news during the work week and it can be difficult to keep everything up to date – that’s the reason behind this weekend’s list.

In short, here are some of the key articles from our news desk as of this Monday summarized, just in case you missed them at the time.

Toyota HiLux may lose the sales throne in 2023

The best-selling car in the country could be dethroned in 2023, when Toyota Australia admits competition is fiercer than ever.

Pillar of Japanese brand HiLux – accounting for a whopping 64,391 units in 2022 – has been the best-selling car brand in Australia for seven consecutive years, but it risks losing that spot in 2023, Toyota admits.

Sean Hanley, Toyota Australia’s vice president of sales, marketing and franchising, said the brand will face that in 2023 when it comes to what he calls a “super-competitor”. ” in the automotive sector.

“HiLux is facing a big challenge this year. We certainly respect our competitors, it’s a challenging market and we don’t take our position lightly,” he said.

FULL STORY: Toyota admits HiLux may lose the sales throne in 2023

Toyota’s all-wheel drive hot hatch price

Toyota has released the official price and specifications for the highly anticipated Corolla GRbefore coming in March.

Prices start from $62,300 in advance on-road costs for GR Corolla GTS and $77,800 before the cost on the road for Morizo ​​Edition does not include road costs.

Toyota Australia has confirmed that it has secured 700 GTSs in its first year of production and has only 25 examples of the Morizo ​​Edition.

The removed flagship will join the GTS “in the coming months”.

FULL STORY: Price and specifications Toyota Corolla GR 2023

Ram unveils first electric pickup

Ram is using the biggest show of the year — in the US at least — to showcase its first all-electric pickup.

The Ram 1500 REV, as it will be called, is being previewed in a Super Bowl commercial ahead of its Q4 2024 launch in the US, and the company has also released a bunch of images – if little of the technical info. .

The company notes that “range-stretching technology” will come later.

FULL STORY: Preview of Ram 1500 REV 2024 . electric pickup

Citroen’s updated C5 Aircross is coming this year

Peugeot Citroen Australia facelift confirmed 2023 C5 Aircross Sport will go to local galleries”then in the first half of 2023“, along with some original details.

Although the price has not been confirmed, customers can register their interest at Citroen’s websitewith the new Sport specification offering an upgraded powertrain, more features and more innovative technology.

For the year 2023 there is one 133kW/250Nm 4-cylinder turbocharged petrol 1.6 liters Under the bonnet, drive the front wheels through a new eight-speed automatic transmission. The previous C5 Aircross Shine ran the tune of 121 kW and a six-speed automatic transmission.

FULL STORY: Preliminary details on Citroen C5 Aircross 2023 confirmed

Toyota strengthens focus on electric vehicles

Koji Sato is entering the top job at Toyotaand one of his first acts was to increase the Japanese giant’s focus on electric vehicles.

Lexus will lead the transition, with the luxury brand confirmed to debut Electric vehicles only in 2035.

“In order to offer attractive BEVs to more customers, we had to streamline the structure of the car, and―with a BEV-first mindset” we had to drastically change the way we do it, says Sato-san. business knowledge, from production to sales and services,” said Sato-san. who took power on April 1, 2023.

FULL STORY: Toyota adopts “BEV-first” mindset under new CEO

Victoria suppresses phones, smart watches, tablets in cars

Victoria is cracking down on distracted drivers, introducing new rules from 31 March 2023 around device use as it rolls out mobile phones and seat belt cameras.

Illegal use of a cell phone or other device is subject to a $555 fine and four demerit points. If the matter is heard in court, the fine can be as high as $1,849.

Learners and learners will have their driver’s licenses revoked if they accumulate more than four demerit points in a year; full license holder’s limit is 11 demerit points over a three-year period.

FULL STORY: Victoria suppresses phones, smart watches, tablets in cars

Mini Electric topless in Europe

Mini has unveiled its first electric convertible, but it’s only a limited edition.

Mini Cooper SE Convertible 2023 will be available in Europe from April this year and will be limited to 999 units.

Every example of this limited edition convertible will be produced alongside the internal combustion Mini Convertible in the Netherlands.

It’s unclear if Mini plans to offer these electric convertibles in any markets other than Europe. We have reached out to Mini Australia and will update this story once we receive a response.

FULL STORY: Mini Electric topless in Europe

How the Toyota GR Corolla and GR Yaris can become even more popular

Toyota’s core GR division may soon offer an automatic transmission option to customers in the market for the GR Yaris or GR Corolla.

Toyota GR Corolla Chief Engineer Naoyuki Sakamoto said auto expert the brand is working on an automatic transmission option for buyers right now.

“Maybe. We are testing the automatic transmission on the GR Yaris in the Japanese racing team,” said Sakamoto-san.

“We took part in a series of demonstrations with a GR Yaris with an automatic transmission and with each demonstration if we find some problem we will improve it. This kind of activity is the main idea of ​​the GR company – always from the development of motorsport.”

FULL STORY: How the Toyota GR Corolla and GR Yaris can become even more popular

Peugeot’s first electric car for Australia confirmed

Peugeot’s first electric vehicle in Australia will be a version of the Partner pickup truck.

The Peugeot 2023 e-Partner will launch in the first half of this year, with full specifications and local pricing to be revealed closer to the launch date.

The brand has committed to offering electric vehicles across passenger cars, SUVs and light commercial vehicles.

The electronic counterpart will be offered exclusively as a long wheelbase, unlike the internal combustion engine-powered model which can also have a shorter wheelbase.

FULL STORY: Peugeot Australia’s first electric car here in the first half of 2023

EU Parliament approves ban on sales of new diesel and petrol cars by 2035

On Tuesday, the European Parliament approved CO2-cutting targets, which ban the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2035.

The ‘Fit for 55’ package, originally proposed on 14 July 2021, aims to contribute to the European Union’s overall climate goals for 2030 and 2050 by directing the automotive industry towards low- and zero-emission technologies, while making it more feasible for consumers to adapt the aforementioned technologies.

Banning the sale of CO2 cars by 2035 would support the goal of a carbon-neutral transport sector by 2050, considering the average lifespan of a new vehicle is 15 years.

The ban, passed by 340 votes in favor, 279 against and 21 abstentions, will support the EU’s ambitious emissions reduction targets to reduce CO2 emissions from new cars and trucks by 100% year-on-year. 2021.

FULL STORY: EU Parliament approves ban on sales of new diesel and petrol cars by 2035

Toyota HiLux hybrid plan is taking shape

Toyota is the undisputed leader in hybrid technology in the Australian market, but it has yet to offer any electric motors in its best-selling HiLux. That is set to change.

Sean Hanley, Toyota Australia’s vice president of sales, marketing and franchising, suggests that the HiLux range will expand further this year.

“Of course, we don’t stand still with our HiLux range,” said Mr. Hanley. “Last year we launched [updated] HiLux Rogue, and it was very well received. In the third quarter of this year, we will launch the HiLux GR Sport.”

“In addition, we will have more action on HiLux in the second half of the year.”

FULL STORY: Toyota HiLux hybrid plan is taking shape

Volkswagen Touareg 2024: Top SUV updated to be more luxurious than ever

The Volkswagen Touareg will receive the mid-life facelift in the European summer, before making its Australian debut in the first quarter of 2024.

According to the brand, the headline changes for this compact car include chassis and technology updates, more upscale cabin appointments, as well as an illuminated rear VW logo for the first time in Europe. .

For Australia, the range of upgrades will also see the launch of the Touareg R eHybrid PHEV, which was previously destined for a late 2022 or early 2023 launch Down Under. The local branch chose to wait for an upgrade pattern instead of importing several samples before renewing.

Other details – such as any powertrain changes or disturbances to the Australian lineup – will be confirmed at the facelifted Touareg launch in the coming months.

FULL STORY: Volkswagen Touareg 2024: Top SUV updated to be more luxurious than ever

The launch of the Subaru Solterra in Australia is delayed again

Subaru has confirmed its first electric vehicle will be launched later this year.

The Subaru Solterra was set to launch “mid-2023”, but has now been confirmed to launch in the second half of the year.

“Subaru Australia looks forward to launching the Subaru Solterra in the second half of 2023. Given the limited global, industry-wide supply and strong demand for Subaru vehicles, there may be occasional slight adjustments to delivery times. performance of new products, based on experience with Solterra,” said a spokesperson for Subaru Australia.

FULL STORY: Subaru Australia delays its first electric car again

Toyota wants GR Corolla enthusiasts to buy, won’t blacklist speculators

Toyota Australia has taken the unprecedented step of screening potential buyers of the new GR Corolla hot hatch to ensure these vehicles – which are available in limited quantities due to supply constraints – find the right fit. legitimate passionate owner.

The Japanese brand made the move to try to avoid the onslaught of price-cutting profiteers who found buyers willing to pay higher than the odds for their new cars during COVID. .

Toyota Australia’s director of sales, marketing and franchising, Sean Hanley, said the brand is asking dealers to be more active in making sure the right buyers are getting the car they deserve.

FULL STORY: Toyota wants GR Corolla enthusiasts to buy, won’t blacklist speculators

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