Over the last few months Pendragon Vehicle Management (PVM) have had fun experiencing and reviewing some of the latest 2019 model releases by driving quite a few brand new demonstrators. Here is a round up of some of the Team's favourite vehicles and a little insight into how our Team Members got on with these new models.
- Audi Q8 S Line 50 Quattro Tiptronic
- Volvo XC40
- Audi A1 Sportback 35 TSFI
- BMW 1 Series 118i M Sport
- Audi A4 Diesel Saloon30 TDI Technik 4dr S Tronic
- DS3 Crossback Ultra Prestige PureTech 155
- Mini Cooper S E Countryman Exclusive PHEV
- BMW 320d M Sport
Peugeot SW GT BLUEHDI 180 Automatic
Also just in case you missed it you can also take a little look at the video we made when BMW UK came to PVM to show off the all new BMW 1 Series (Right).
Audi Q8 S Line 50 Quattro Tiptronic
A few rather autumnal looking photos for our latest Demo review this time from our very own Head of Marketing, who had the latest Audi Q8 for a few days. This demo was the diesel Audi Q8 S Line 50 Quattro Tiptronic with additional Comfort and Sound Pack.
This particular car has a CO2 rating of 181, Emissions class of Euro 6d-TEMP-EVAP-ISC and Fuel consumption (mpg) at 41.5. Some of the standard features included Adaptive air Sport suspension, front sports seats, Audi Virtual Cockpit and MMI Navigation plus.
'The car wasn’t as large as expected but still gives you the higher-end SUV feel. Considering this was the entry level spec with additional packs, I was impressed with the look and feel throughout and especially the user interface and functionality of the twin touch screens.
In an ideal world I would have liked to have driven the Audi for a bit longer to get a better idea on whether Audi’s claims around improved fuel economy for this model panned out. However, for the few days I did have it, I felt its styling, technology features and smooth ride would make it a great executive car'.
This time its the turn of the latest Volvo XC40 with some great photo's taken over a long weekend in Wales.
‘After a very favourable time with the Audi Q8 I was a little apprehensive about giving it back and taking on the Volvo XC40, indeed my initial impressions were that it was noisy and quite basic.
However, this car is definitely a grower and after a mammoth 500-mile week I was very sorry to see it go. It could be a great company car but also a perfect family car. Small enough to successfully parallel park outside school but big enough to separate the little ones from all out warfare in the back on longer journeys.
My initial thoughts that the interior was basic actually added to the user-friendly nature of the infotainment menus. Though it isn’t the fastest should you need to floor it, this is more than made up for by the incredible fuel consumption and as a family car a vast amount of power is not necessarily something you would want in this kind of vehicle anyway.
The main negative for me was that it didn’t have the safety features or pilot assist from the XC90, however this may be just be the spec of the vehicle I had. The XC40 however does feature a road sign limiter, which as safety feature I found a very positive experience.’
Audi A1 Sportback 35 TSFI
A number of the team managed to take the A1 for a spin, however Team Member Luke Schofield came up with the best short but detailed review:
'The new 2019 Audi A1 seems to have entered the market this year to reassert itself as the king of the super mini in light of the new release of VW polo, Seat Ibiza and Ford Fiesta rivals. It certainly delivers from an aesthetic perspective and in my option the A1 S line Contrast Edition we have experienced blows the competition away.
Its fierce contouring, heavy rear end and honeycomb grill means this car catches the eye of every demographic. There are a number of engines, we had the 35 TSFI which is a 150ps petrol engine that pairs a hard ride from the S line suspension to provide a very engaging drive. Despite this 5-door being somewhat bigger than the last model this vehicle is not ideal for high mileage company car drivers.
However for pool cars, low mileage city driving or a personal car to deliver a premium bit of fun this vehicle delivers in bucket loads. Simple and classy I would highly recommend this car.'
BMW 1 Series 118i M Sport
Back in October PVM had the pleasure of hosting BMW UK here at our Derby based head office, when they organised a brilliant Ride and Drive event for all of our Team Members to experience the all new BMW 1 Series.
During the Ride and Drive one of our Customer Relationship Executives Andy had a few words to say about this new incarnation:
'Having handed back the keys to my 2-year-old BMW 118i M Sport a fortnight ago, today’s BMW 1 Series roadshow event held at PVM's Derby office gave me the ideal opportunity to test the new '2020' model year version and compare the old and new. The model I took out was the automatic 118d M Sport.
At first viewing the new car looks significantly more aggressive with a noticeably larger grill and new 18" alloy wheels which look stunning. One of the previous minor bug bears with the old version was that the bonnet length felt too long which made pulling out of some junctions difficult. With the new model the engine is now transversely mounted which allows for a shorter bonnet, this is also an effect of the new front wheel drive design configuration.
Moving inside the car noticeable improvements include:
- Much larger navigation screen (also allowing for touch screen usage)
- Addition of a rear parking camera
- Electric parking brake
- Redesigned centre console with the temp controls a lot easier to operate
- Phone holder in the lower console (no more balancing phone in the cup holder)
Although I didn't open the boot, I'm told this is now also more sizeable which is welcome. With a premium feel and exciting new looks, the car should prove popular with fleets.'
Audi A4 Diesel Saloon30 TDI Technik 4dr S Tronic
Our Tactical & Reporting Manager, Phil Waring had an Audi A4 for quite a few hours while trying to avoid local flooding back in November and very long delays.
“This particular vehicle was the Audi A4 Diesel Saloon30 TDI Technik 4dr S Tronic and the general feel was one of luxury, as you would expect from a premium supplier. Luckily for me it was an extremely comfortable environment to spend a few hours in. I really liked the digital dashboard layout with its large infotainment screen (at 10.1”) with a really simple layout helping you find the info you need quickly.
Navigating around the MMI system to find your MPG, miles to empty, Radio, phone and Sat Nav was really easy but very effective with lots of different set-ups to suit most needs. I’m a stat man so could easily find the numbers I crave.
A great smooth drive, with even our Head of Operations also commenting that he enjoyed the ride more than that of his current vehicle. All in all, a great car and I would definitely think about recommending it to others and having one myself.”
DS3 Crossback Ultra Prestige PureTech 155
Some of our PVM Team Members managed to get some time with a brand new DS3 Crossback in July. This particular model was the DS3 Crossback Ultra Prestige PureTech 155. It was the 8 Speed Automatic in imperial gold, with a CO2 at 121 g/km.
Therefore, the spec for this particular model was extremely impressive, boasting a huge array of tech, full leather trim, a sub-woofer in the boot and even massage function in the front seats.
Some found the interface for the touchscreen not as intuitive or as user friendly as they would have liked but were definitely impressed with the look and feel of the interior.
What also became apparent when taken for a spin in the dark was that the headlights were pink! Check out the photo's on our Linked In post from the 26th July about it if you don’t believe us.
Mini Cooper S E Countryman Exclusive PHEV
At the top end of Mini’s offerings, the options available for this particular car also included both a Comfort and Navigation Pack. Technical details include CO2 at 43 g/km, Fuel consumption at 156.9 mpg and 28-31 miles electric range from fully charged. For a slightly heavier vehicle (battery adding weight under the back seats) it still sees roughly 0-62 mph in 6-9 seconds.
Our Marketing Executive gave us a quick run-down of how they got on.
‘Overall I really liked this car. It was surprisingly quick when needed so I can see how it has managed to retain it’s ‘S’ badge. I quite liked the Mini styling, and as it fell within the higher end of the spectrum when it came to options and features, it was a comfortable environment to be in. The dash was also what you would expect from Mini with the central touchscreen being very user friendly.
A few niggles for me was that I found the claim of 28-31 EV only range a little unrealistic being closer to 20/22 miles and the ride itself, was not exactly smooth unless driving at speed. It is a decent size and a great option for those looking for a hybrid company car.'
BMW 320d M Sport
Luke Schofield, again got the chance to take the 2019 BMW 320d for a long weekend and this is how he found it.
'The new BMW 320d offers a more aggressive and clean-cut look which is perfectly balanced by the new turbo technology that brings this vehicle down to 0-62 in 7.1 seconds. The auto gear box is smooth and lucid through the motions with very little driver disruption, perfect to conduct a debrief of a meeting whilst cruising comfortably down the motorway.
BMW have clearly worked hard on the on-board technology and the 3 series has an interactive element that allows you enjoy personalising your vehicle, this is no longer a chore. The handling is refined and the interior classy.
This is a perfect company vehicle for mid – senior levels to appeal to all their wants and needs.'
Peugeot SW GT BLUEHDI 180 Automatic
PVM managed a little look at the brand new Peugeot 508 back in September. This particular car was the 508 Peugeot SW GT BLUEHDI 180 Automatic with full leather interior, CO2 at 124 g/km and BIK is at 29%.
The seats were comfortable when driving and interior styling gave it an overall premium feel. The front seats had a massage function, as well as being heated which was an unexpected bonus.
One of our Team members took it for the weekend and had this to say:
'The 508 had a great high spec feel, similar to that of an Audi or Mercedes-Benz. It has some great tech features including the "leg kick" function for opening the boot. This was extremely useful and the boot space itself was large and able to accommodate everything needed over a busy weekend."
Finally some thoughts on the new Audi Q3 from our very own New Business National Account Manager, Tony Nicholson. Tony was able to drive this Audi for a few weeks and it's safe to say that he quite liked it!
Audi have completely uplifted the final member of their SUV fleet and the result is certainly eye catching. The body work now has very much a sporting edge making the car very appealing to most age groups who want a premium small SUV. The additional safety features and notifications very much produce a vehicle that is fun to drive but with the passenger’s safety very much in mind.
The complete overhaul of the internal layout and with a dash board including an integral touch screen is very easy to view and use. This car is aimed at those people who want a lifestyle vehicle, but one that stands out from the rest of the field and this new Q3 delivers on all fronts.
Yes, it is expensive but it is a premium Audi product and is at home on all road types including driving in towns and cities being very agile and easy to handle. But the most important thing is that you can get your golf clubs in the back without lowering back passenger seats which is for some people very important!
If you would like to talk to the team about including any of these vehicles in your Fleet or as a new company car we would be happy to help. Just get in touch with us on:
01332 267367 or firstname.lastname@example.org