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Initially the new BMW 5 Series available with a six speed manual gearbox, The BMW will introduce an automatic option early in 2006. Also as standard in the entry level model are eight air bags, 16-inch alloy wheels and traction control.
The cheap new Fiat Panda is set to join an illustrious list of names including Aston Martin, Lotus and BMW by featuring in a James Bond movie. Filming for Casino Royale is set to start early next year and before die-hard fans protest over the slick secret agent driving a cheap hatchback it should pointed out that Bond's main drive will actually be the Aston Martin V8 Vantage.
Mazda has been forced to ramp up production of cheap new Mazda3s due to an unexpected increase in car sales. With its ABS, power steering and twin airbags as standard the Mazda3 has shifted over 16,000 units in the UK and is considered by many to be an excellent low cost alternative to buying the likes of a new Ford Focus, Volkswagen Bora, Peugeot 307, Audi A3 or Volkswagen Golf.
The new Mazda5 C-MAV has achieved a maximum five star rating from the European New Car Assessment Programme (NCAP) safety tests. The most common type of accident scenario, the off-set front crash, scored the car 84 per cent of the available maximum with the its seat belt reminder winning two bonus points.
The new Fiat Panda has won the best city car award in this year. The Panda beat off competition from a range of other hatchbacks and city cars such as Nissan's new Micra, the not so new Vauxhall Corsa and the cheap new Ford Fiesta, which continues to make impressive sales. This is the second year in a row that the Fiat Panda has taken the best city car award.
The new Ford Focus ST will be released in five-door form when it goes on sale later this year. Both the three and five-door options will be powered by a 217bhp, 2.5-litre engine, and although no official figures have been released the cars should get from 0-60mph in around six seconds.
Mazda has announced the definitive spec list for the cheap new Mazda 5. Like the new Mazda 5, the new Vauxhall Zafira goes on sale this week and apart from some extra storage compartments and tweaked body work it is not too different to the first generation model. The new Mazda 5 hopes to tempt customers away from the Zafira with a relatively low cost coupled with improved equipment levels.
The new Ford Focus has taken the coveted car of the year award at this year Auto Express' decision suggests that the new Ford Focus, with its more refined and comfortable drive is not going to relinquish that top spot at anytime soon. Ford are even hoping that new Focus sales will be given a further boost in 2005 with the sporty Focus ST model.
Car maker Honda has announced that it will unveil four new cars at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The Civic Hybrid achieve a 20 per cent greater output than the current model on the four-door version, which comes with a 1.3-litre three-stage i-VTEC engine combined with a more efficient integrated motor assist system (IMA). According to Honda, its performance is equal to a 1.
The first cheap new Ford Focus to be fitted with the manufacturers Flexi-Fuel engine is being tested in the UK. The cheap new Ford will be the first bio-ethanol fuelled car to be marketed in the UK by a major manufacturer, and Ford's marketing men are hoping that the Somerset pilot will help boost interest in their alternative fuels.