Used Mercedes CLA review

A full used buyer’s guide on the Mercedes CLA covering the CLA Mk1 (2013-2019)VerdictIt’s based on the A-Class hatch, but on the face of it the CLA doesn’t actually make a great deal of sense, because prices are higher and it offers substantially less practicality, unless you buy a Shooting Brake. But the standard car’s saloon configuration is still relatively usable, especially if you don’t need to carry lots of people or luggage. Even the entry-level 1.6-litre cars (petrol or Continue reading “Used Mercedes CLA review”

Used BMW X4 review

A full used buyer’s guide on the BMW X4 covering the X4 Mk1 (2014-2018)VerdictBMW was probably as surprised as the rest of us when its X6 was a smash hit, so it made sense to make the formula more accessible by downsizing it. On the face of it, the X4 isn’t a very rational purchase because it costs more than an X3, yet isn’t as practical. But that hasn’t stopped the X4 from finding buyers, and it’s easy to recommend as long as ultimate load capacity isn’t needed. As well as strong, Continue reading “Used BMW X4 review”

Best winter tyres 2019: tyre brands reviewed and UK prices compared

Our exhaustive tests reveal the best winter tyre that can cope with snow and freezing conditions

There’s no doubt all-season designs are the SUVs of the tyre world. But while they provide a good compromise, if you want the ultimate all-year-round performance, you need to swap tyres to suit the seasons.

A summer tyre, the type most UK drivers fit and use, works considerably better than any alternative in dry and warm conditions, while a winter design has a substantial advantage in the Continue reading “Best winter tyres 2019: tyre brands reviewed and UK prices compared”

Winter tyre reviews 2019: results by category

Which winter tyre performed well in which area? Our tables reveal all

The tyres were assessed in 13 tests, and these results were used, along with the prices, to calculate an overall rating. In each test, the best tyre is rated at 100 per cent, and the other contenders are scored relative to the winner to show how close the results are. These differences are reflected in our overall ranking.

Verdict

Test debutant Toyo is a step behind the rest in our tests, only shining in the dry – not Continue reading “Winter tyre reviews 2019: results by category”

DSG: what is a Direct Shift Gearbox and how do they work?

A direct shift gearbox, also known as a dual-clutch gearbox, offers an alternative to a conventional automatic

In the past if you were buying a new car you would have been faced with two choices when it came to its gearbox – manual or automatic. These days though there’s another choice of transmission to be considered, the Direct Shift Gearbox, that’s more commonly described using its DSG acronym, and is also known as a dual-clutch gearbox. 

From the driver’s seat it’s very Continue reading “DSG: what is a Direct Shift Gearbox and how do they work?”

Best road atlas 2019

A traditional road map still has its place, and we pick the best from eight choices

Despite the rise of sat-navs and apps, many drivers still prefer to use paper maps which can’t go wrong or misdirect you. They are also great for seeing the bigger picture ahead of a trip.

The best sizes are A4 or A3, and the bigger options usually work out cheaper per page. But of course the bigger you buy, the more room they take up in storage. A larger scale gives more detail but means more pages and Continue reading “Best road atlas 2019”

Used Jaguar F-Type review

A full used buyer’s guide on the Jaguar F-Type covering the F-Type Mk1 (2013-date)VerdictWith its gorgeous looks and electrifying performance, the F-Type is a fabulous successor to the XK and very much worthy of its lineage from the classic E-Type. All F-Types are fast but, while the 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine has the right numbers, the V6 and V8 offer the sense of occasion that an F-Type should have, and are worth shelling out for. The F-Type comes with an extensive options list, so you Continue reading “Used Jaguar F-Type review”

Used Mercedes GLC review

A full used buyer’s guide on the Mercedes GLC covering the GLC MK1 (2015-date)VerdictThe Mercedes GLC was a long time coming, but this arguably gave its maker enough time to get it right first time. With its smart design, standard four-wheel drive and efficient engines, along with a very slick transmission, the GLC was a class act. Like any car wearing the three-pointed star, it wasn’t a bargain and, going by our Driver Power survey, running costs are high, while reliability isn’t always Continue reading “Used Mercedes GLC review”

DSG gearboxes: what are they and how do they work?

A direct shift gearbox, also known as a dual-clutch gearbox, offers an alternative to a conventional automatic

In the past if you were buying a new car you would have been faced with two choices when it came to its gearbox – manual or automatic. These days though there’s another choice of transmission to be considered, the Direct Shift Gearbox, that’s more commonly described using its DSG acronym, and is also known as a dual-clutch gearbox. 

From the driver’s seat it’s very Continue reading “DSG gearboxes: what are they and how do they work?”