MPV

Zafira Tourer Begins UK production

Vauxhall have released specific details and specifications for the production model of the very attractive Zafira Tourer Concept they showcased at Geneva earlier this year.  Bringing the ultimate in luxury and comfort the new 7-seat Zafira will sit alongside the range to open Vauxhall up to a premium market aimed at large families and chauffeur driven cars.

The car will still feature the Flex7 seating plan that the original Zafira championed however takes advantage of the extra room to evolve the whole concept of car seating.  From 2nd row swiveling chairs to 3rd row fold flat seats, this bigger beefier MPV will see Vauxhall catering for much more than just a family vacation.

Engines will include everything from a 1.4 turbo petrol to a 2.0litre CDTi boasting three outputs.  No doubt a VXR will be produced at some point in the future too given Vauxhall's normal trend, but considering the Zafira Tourer is based on the Insignia's platform, I can't see that being a bad thing.

Along with it's advances in versatility inside, the Tourer gains design cues that bring the MPV up to date, a very much needed facelift and identity for the car itself means that not only will it be comfortable inside, but look great while doing so.  Dashboard elements and consoles are similar to that seen in last year's Meriva, no shock there, boasting space saving solutions and more armrests than you can shake a stick at!

Other than these photos we wont be seeing the new Zafira Tourer on the roads or even dealers just yet, but look forward to Frankfurt in September where the car will make it's world debut.

 

MINI Rocketman - I don't get it...

Okay, so MINI's new concept talks about maximising space and urban mobility.  How they have managed to change the interior space of a standard MINI and make more room, without making the occupants sit on those little square plastic stools puzzles me somewhat.

After seeing the Crossover concept at Paris a couple of years ago however and thinking that was laughable, I actually like the Countryman.  So for that reason, I'm sticking with indifference to MINI's possible attempt at a compact MPV?

...plus, I like the lights.

Fiat Reap Benefits from Their New Daddy Bear

After buying the Chrysler, Jeep and Dodge brands last year, we have all expected to see Fiat releasing a new 4x4 with that typical American edge.

Hoping they wouldn't just re-badge a group car, my fears have become reality where Fiat have done just that, taking the Dodge Journey and injecting a little Fiat botox to reinvent it as the Fiat Freemount.

The front wing becomes black with a chrome underline, and the grille opens up to accommodate a chrome cross with a centered Fiat Badge, with the back and sides keeping much the same style.

Moving inside the cabin makes for a lot more of a cosy feel.  Fiat have taken their Daddy Bear Dodge shopping for new leather chaps and given him tips on some tighter fitting trims and a bit of chrome detailing to complete the outfit.

Overall, it'll be a nice change from the Multipla MPV and certainly beneficial to Fiat's market share.  The Fiat Freemount will be unveiled at Geneva Motorshow in March and go on sale in the second half of 2011.