1. Aston Martin Vantage
First on my list is the new baby Aston, a true modern sports car. Under the bonnet is a twin-turbo charged AMG V8 with over 500bhp that’s bound to wake the neighbours in the morning, and that’s in addition to an almost 50/50 weight distribution due to the engine being mounted just in front of the driver. On paper the Vantage already sounds both fun and fast so hopefully it will be able to carry on and improve upon the previous car’s epic legacy.
Speaking of the previous generation Vantage, the styling has fortunately not been ruined by bringing the Vantage up to date. The old V8 Vantage was very pretty and tough act to follow in that respect, though Aston has really hit the ball out the park for the 2018 car. Whereas the previous iteration was beautiful in a sort of elegant and cool way, this new one is beautiful in a more modern and aggressive way. Just look at that gaping wide mouth looking like it’s about to swallow any lesser cars out on the road. It definitely stands out from not only the rest of the Aston Martin range but pretty much any other car (apart from James Bond’s DB10 of which the new Vantage has taken some design aspects from).
The main upcoming additions to the Vantage line-up that should (fingers crossed) be announced which we can be most excited about will be the mighty V12 and a possible manual option. Currently Aston are only offering that V8 put with an automatic which is not at all disappointing, but I still can’t wait until we see the return of the legend that is the V12 Vantage mated to a proper manual gearbox. If the last V12 Vantage S was anything to go by, Aston knows how to make a sports car go supercar fast. Right now however the 2018 V8 is still no slouch, 0-62 in 3.6 seconds and a top speed of 195mph means it should be able give the 911 a run for its money. That combined with a hefty price tag of £120,000 makes this a very expensive sports car, but to be honest who really cares when it’s an Aston Martin.
2. Ford Mustang GT
All you Americans have already got this car so I can’t say I’m not jealous. Here in Britain we still have a bit to wait, but it shouldn’t be too long until we see 2018 Mustangs pop up on our roads. It’s not a completely new car, just an update of the 2015 model. You could argue all day about the controversial styling changes Ford has made. If you love it or hate it, you can always argue that it is more aggressive that the car it replace. Personally, I’m not making any final decisions on the facelift until I see one on the road, then I’ll make up my mind. I don’t think you can make a true judgement on a car’s looks just from a picture, although I will say I’m not declaring the Mustang dead like some people were when the first images of this car were leaked. On first impressions I rather like it and overtime I think the new face of the Mustang will grow on people.
Changing the subject, the slightly less controversial changes you definitely can’t see in pictures. Firstly the naturally aspirated 5.0 litre V8 is still there, but it now has 460bhp which is 25bhp more than what the previous V8 had. There are more upgrades on the performance front too as Ford say that with the right spec you can get it to do 0-60mph in less than 4.0 seconds. For a car that costs less than pretty much every car with that kind of performance, it’s no lie that you get a lot of bang for your buck, even more than ever before. Another change to the new 2018 model is that you now get four exhausts instead of the two you got with the previous car. You can also now control how loud you want the exhaust to be so you can choose how obnoxious you want to look to everyone out on the road or walking down the pavement. If you want to scare people on the street, you now don’t necessarily need to go and buy an aftermarket exhaust. You see, with the 2018 Mustang GT everyone wins, except the people on the street and the aftermarket exhaust retailers of course.
As a quick side note, the reason I have put specifically the ‘GT’ version of the Mustang here because I don’t think anyone is sitting at the edge of their seats waiting for the 2018 Ecoboost Mustang to come out. I think I’ll save that version of the Mustang for the list of coolest-looking cars with pathetic engines. Next thing you know BMW will make a sports car with a 1.5 litre MINI engine in it. Wait, they already did that with the i8 but that gets aget out of jail free card as its hybrid powertrain makes up for it in performance, the 2.3 litre engine (however turbo-charged it may be) in the Ecoboost Mustang does not. In short, buy a V8 mustang or don’t buy a Mustang at all. It’s that simple.
3. Lamborghini Urus
To be honest, I think the Urus is quite a pointless car to exist. Is there really any need for a Lambo SUV? I remember seeing a video where Lamborghini were showing how fast it could go around a track and calling it the world’s first Super Sports Utility Vehicle. Well, if you want a car that can go really fast around a track, Lamborghini already offer the mind-bendingly quick Aventador and Hurican. Why go for the Urus over them? Maybe for the practicality and off-road capability but remember it’s still a Lamborghini and people who can afford a Lamborghini usually have other cars that can be good to drive on a daily basis, most likely other SUVs like Cayennes, X5s, Q7s and so on.
On the other hand, the reason I’ve put the Urus on this list is for that same reason of potential pointlessness. Most Lamborghini owners only choose a Lamborghini because it looks like a Jet Fighter and is faster than 99% of cars on the road, which is usually demonstrated by revving it up and down the street and attracting attention from passers-by in doing so. Most SUV buyers only choose an SUV so they can sit above everyone else on the road and be bigger than them, they’re also normally luxurious as well. Furthermore, as I mentioned before, most Lamborghini and supercar/hypercar owners in general will have an SUV as well to be able to drive on a daily basis and carry the family around in as well. It will be interesting as to how this car is received. Will these people want a car that combines the lunacy of a Lamborghini and the everyday ability of an SUV, or will they want to keep different cars for different occasions? If I were to have enough money I’d go for the second option, which is why I find a Lambo SUV a bit pointless to begin with. Though I have a feeling that the typical Lamborghini owner would go for option one.
Adding to why I think the Urus is pointless is the fact that combining these two worlds of the supercar and the SUV isn’t exactly easy to do. Cars that try to do everything usually end up doing everything pretty at an average standard and doesn’t really excel neither here nor there. But who knows, maybe the Urus can break the mold and prove me wrong. A 0-60mph in 3.6 seconds and a top speed of 189mph is not to be looked over, let alone from an SUV…
4. BMW M5
Like the Lamborghini Urus, the M5 is another car aspiring to be able to do everything, however this time from a brand known for producing good fast saloons instead of mad supercars so there’s already more assurance on the M5’s side. And actually it’s faster too, 0-62mph only takes 3.4 seconds and it can reach a staggering 190mph. This is thanks to a twin-turbo 4.4 litre V8 that has 592 horses to play with. One feature that really assures the best of both worlds is that you can choose between two and four-wheel drive, allowing you to safely do the school run and then go straight to the track and destroy the tires doing drifts all with the same car. Whether you would want one car that can do all of that is up to you.
As looks go, I think the M5 to most people will look the same as the old one. It has a balance of subtlety and madness that I quite like, and saying it looks like the previous generation M5 is no bad thing. I wouldn’t go as far to say that the new M5 is a leap forward or a step in a new direction from its predecessor in terms of design, everything just looks more up-to-date now. You know what they say, if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it.
There’s not much else to say about the 2018 M5 but that to sum up, from what I’ve read in reviews, it’s a great car. The BMW M5 has been around for decades and every iteration of it seems to improve upon the one before. It seems this new one is no exception.
5. Alpine A110
You might have never heard of Alpine. All I knew before this car was that they had something to do with Renault. Alpine is a French brand, famous in the past for their cars in the world of Rally, and are now back with this little sports car to rival the Porsche 718 Cayman, the A110. It’s a two-seater mid-engined light-weight pocket rocket that accelerates from 0-62mph in 4.5 seconds and can reach a top speed of 155mph (electronically limited). Because it only weighs a mere 1103kg it only needs a tiny 1.8 litre engine with just 249bhp to propel it forward at great speed.
Another advantage of having such a light chassis is the agility and nimbleness it comes with. Other cars such as the Alfa Romeo 4C and Lotus Elise have already proven that you can have a lot of fun chucking a small light-weight car around the bends. I doubt the Alpine A110 will differ from this. However, unlike the Elise, the Alpine is not a true stripped out sports car, it still has a centre console with a screen and some creature comforts. That’s the main reason why I would compare the A110 with the 718 Cayman the most.
Unfortunately, with the Porsche already being in fact a very good car, the Alpine has some stiff competition to deal with. In addition, the Alpine badge isn’t (at least at this point in time) a desirable one whereas the Porsche’s is. However I think that there is always room for something new and different to steal the show and from what I’ve seen, the little Alpine is a worthy contender for sure. Especially with a price of just under £50,000 makes it not exactly a budget alternative either and it’s not like you get a lot of car for the money.