Hot Source

THE FAST GUIDE TO QUICK CARS

– Daniel DeGasperi

CHART ATTACK

LAST MONTH IN NEW PERFORMANCE CAR SALES

ITALIANS SCORE GOALS

Alfa resurgence backed by on-fire Ferrari

ITALY didn’t qualify for the soccer (sorry, football) World Cup, but some national pride can be salvaged with their automotive fortunes at least here in Australia. According to May year-to-date sales data, Alfa Romeo is up 36.1 per cent to 509 units. Of that, 248 Giulias are backed by 114 Stelvios – and that medium SUV’s stonking Q variant is still to come.

Ferrari has sold 98 cars, up 24.1 per cent, while Lamborghini has shifted 55 units, up 10.0 per cent and with Urus to come. Only Maserati has let the Italian side down, although its 323 sales have only slipped 4.7 per cent, with increased Ghibli (up 30.5 per cent to 107 units) offset by decreased Levante (down 24.3 per cent to 168 units).

In something of a tri-nations battle, however, Italy is comfortably leading German and (especially) British opposition for growth. Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz have stalled this year, despite a new model onslaught, while Porsche is down 14.8 per cent. The Giulia is selling at almost onethird the rate of the better-known Audi A4 (down 34.7 per cent to 635 sales), while Ghibli is just on that rate of BMW 5 Series sales (after a huge 2017, it has plummeted 49.7 per cent to 601 units).

Jaguar won’t be as happy as Harry (and Megan), either, with its 890 sales down 26.4 per cent. It is now – despite improving its brand for a decade since the XF of 2008 – only 381 ahead of Alfa overall. McLaren’s miniscule 38 sales are a quarter behind this time last year, while even Land Rover isn’t riding the SUV boom like it should, down 26.4 per cent to 890 sales. Even new Velar (with 696 sales) isn’t quite enough to offset the hugely off-the-pace Evoque (down 57.6 per cent to 597 sales) and Range Rover (down 44.2 per cent to 111 units). I

– Daniel DeGasperi

-54 PER CENT

PIPING HOT

Porsche Panamera

This liftback is doing the heavy lifting for its old SUV siblings, up 42.9 per cent to 70 units and well ahead of Porsche’s next top performer – the 911, up 25.5 per cent to 276 sales.

43 PER CENT

TOO COOL

Jaguar F-Pace

There are plenty of down-facing arrows among the British brands, but the still-fresh F-Pace has fallen among the hardest. Despite the SUV craze, its 289 sales are 54.1 per cent behind the 629 haul to May 2017. Meanwhile, the newer Rangie Velar has snared 696 sales.

PIPELINE

HOT STUFF COMING SOON

Q3 2018

Alfa Romeo Stelvio Q

Giulia QV-based SUV.

Aston Martin Vanquish S Ultimate

Alpine A110

French Cayman fighter.

Audi A8

BMW i8 Roadster

Took ages to arrive and it takes ages to recharge.

BMW M2 Competition

Chevrolet Camaro HSV converts to RHD.

Ford Mustang Hyundai Genesis G70

Hyundai’s Kia Stinger.

Mercedes-AMG C43/C63 facelift

Mercedes-Benz CLS

Range Rover/Sport updates

Renault Sport Megane

FWD hero will need to be very good.

Volkswagen Golf GTI update

180kW, DSG and LSD are all now standard fitment.

Q4 2018

Audi RS5 Sportback

Ford Focus Sport

Lighter 1.5-litre turbo should make for a good Sport.

Kia Cerato Turbo

Mercedes-AMG A35

Range Rover SV Coupe

Fewer doors, even greater luxury.

2019

Alpina XD3

Audi A1

Audi S6

Audi Q6

BMW 3 Series

BMW 8 Series

BMW X5

BMW Z4

Turbo six, rear-drive roadster return.

Ford Fiesta ST

Boosted 1.5-litre triple.

Maserati Levante Trofeo

440kW/730Nm twin-turbo V8.

Mazda3 SP25

Lighter, switches to torsion bar rear.

McLaren Senna

Mercedes-AMG GT 4-Door

Mercedes-AMG GT S Roadster

Mercedes-AMG A45

300kW-plus hybrid hyper hatch.

Porsche 992 911

Porsche 718 Cayman GT4

Tipped to take big-boy 4.0-litre six.

Rolls-Royce Cullinan

Toyota Supra

Volkswagen Golf Mk8