juez

Francisco Mota (Portugal)

My judgement is based on following grounds:

Alfa Romeo Giulia

A good effort from FCA, in the planned rebirth of Alfa Romeo. Very sporty dynamics, although the stability control cannot be disconnected, to fully exploit the chassis. Diesel engine is less refined than the best in class, there are some quality issues in the cabin that need improvement, infotainment system is poor and there are some driver aids missing.

 

Citroën C3

A comfort biased suspension set-up and polarizing styling are brave moves in this market segment. Easy to drive, but not exciting, the C3 offers sensible engine options, both petrol and Diesel. There are some innovative optional extras and a wide choice in contrasting body color schemes. Five speed manual gearbox feels old and cabin quality has some weak points.

 

Mercedes Clase E

A successful blend of technology, comfort and built quality. Refined driving and a strong new 2.0-litre Diesel engine. There are some useful driver aids and a lot more to choose from an almost endless optional extras list. For some customers, maybe there are just too much technology and styling is a disappointment, being identical to the smaller C-Class.

 

Nissan Micra

For the first time, the Micra offers inspired dynamic qualities, aided by some new electronic functions. There’s a no-nonsense approach that gives priority to features that customers are expected to value and use, meaning that others are missing, like rear electric windows. Customizable cabin and exterior, shows that Nissan aims for a new type of consumer.

 

Peugeot 3008

Here’s a compact crossover that seems to have it all under control: attractive styling, roomy interior, innovative digital instrument panel and a cockpit feel to the driver. Adding a good range of petrol and diesel engines, efficient and entertaining handling and complete equipment list makes the 3008 one of the best in the most competitive of crossover segments.

 

Toyota C-HR

Bold styling and sporty dynamics are not usually connected with Toyota products. But this is exactly what the new C-HR brings to the brand’s portfolio, promising to inspire other future models. Cabin follows the same path but compromises in head room, at the rear seats. There are only two engine options, one is a frugal but soulless hybrid.

 

Volvo S90/V90

Not easy to enter the executive premium segment but Volvo did it with the new S90/V90. Very Swedish styling and cabin feel, lots of room and high quality materials. The strategic option for four cylinder engines only may sound risky, but each one does what is expected, even the hybrid. Dynamics are more comfortable than sporty, and that’s just fine.