New cars galore

Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar and Lexus roll out three new cars over three days

This week has turned out to be an especially busy one for the motor industry, with no fewer than three car launches taking place on three consecutive days.

It started on Wednesday, when Mercedes-Benz unveiled the GLE and GLE Coupe at the Capitol Theatre. The pair join an increasingly crowded crossover segment, with the GLE Coupe giving those eyeing BMW's X6 cause for pause, and the GLE targeting those who have long been happy with the practicality and sturdiness of the Mercedes M or ML-class models.

The all-wheel-drive GLE450 AMG Coupe is priced at $383,888. Its 367bhp 3-litre V6, paired with a nine-speed autobox, sends the car to 100kmh in 5.7 seconds.

The more modestly endowed GLE400 Coupe is $357,888, while the GLE400 is going for $345,888. Both cars are powered by a 3-litre V6 producing 333bhp.

On Thursday, Jaguar launched its XF executive sedan at Gillman Barracks - barely two months after unveiling its smaller sibling, the XE.

The new XF is an evolutionary change from its predecessor, but is packed with the latest technology.

Made largely of aluminium, the car is lighter than the competition, which consists of cars such as BMW's 5-series and Mercedes' E-class.

The version available at the launch is powered by a 2-litre four-cylinder turbo making 240bhp and 340Nm of torque. Mated to an eight-speed autobox, it takes seven seconds to hit 100kmh.

The Prestige variant is priced at $229,999, while the better- equipped R-Sport is $259,999.

There will be a 2-litre turbodiesel version soon. At the launch, Jaguar agent Wearnes Automotive also announced that the F-Pace - Jaguar's first sport-utility vehicle - will be launched in the first half of next year.

And last but not least, Lexus unleashed its latest RX crossover yesterday at Capella Singapore on Sentosa, starting with the 2-litre four-cylinder turbo. The RX200t is powered by the same 234bhp/ 350Nm engine found in the compact Lexus NX200t.

Being a larger vehicle, it is not as brisk as the NX, but still manages the century sprint in 9.2 and 9.5 seconds, depending on the variant.

The RX200t Luxury (0-100kmh in 9.5 seconds) is retailing at $276,000, with a slew of other versions arriving next year.

These include the Executive, the F Sport, a 3.5-litre V6 RX350 and a petrol-electric hybrid with 308bhp. The last version is the quickest and most frugal, with a 0-100kmh timing of 7.7 seconds and a fuel economy of 5.7 litres/100km.

Prices for these other versions are not finalised yet.

But already, the new cars launched this week present quite a selection for those shopping for wheels for the new year.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 28, 2015, with the headline 'New cars galore'. Print Edition | Subscribe