At this year's Brisbane Motor Show several cars made their Australian debuts, including the Subaru WRX STI, Fiat Ritmo and BMW 135i coupe.
Subaru WRX STI spec.R
Today, Subaru Australia announced pricing of its new WRX STI. There will be two variants of the new STI, a base version retailing for AU$59,990 and the spec.R which has a RRP of AU$64,990.
Both models share the same basic styling -- that of a Subaru Impreza pumped full of 'roids. With its pumped up front and rear guards, only the front doors and roof are shared with the more pedestrian WRX.
Mechanically they both feature a turbo-charged 2.5-litre horizontally opposed (or boxer) four-cylinder engine with 221kW of power and 407Nm of torque linked up to a four-wheel drive system with driver adjustable centre diff.
Subaru WRX STI spec.R
Like the base STi, the spec.R's feature list includes fog lights, xenon headlights, quad tailpipes and optional DVD sat-nav system. The spec.R's extra AU$5,000 nabs buyers rally-style 18-inch BBS rims, as well as Recaro bucket seats.
Brisbane show goers will see Fiat's new Corolla fighter, the Ritmo, in Aussie-spec. Called Bravo overseas, the Ritmo comes in only one body style, an attractive five-door hatch.
In Australia the Ritmo is being offered with a choice of two engines, one petrol and one diesel. The petrol is a 1.4-litre turbo four-cylinder unit with 110kW of power and is priced from AU$29,990. Meanwhile the 1.9-litre turbo-diesel begins at AU$33,490.
The Ritmo comes in two trim levels: Emotion and the higher-priced Sport. All Ritmos come standard with an MP3-capable CD player and steering wheel audio controls. Sport buyers get a body-kit, larger 17-inch wheels, instead of 16s, as well as Bluetooth mobile hands-free and a USB port.
The local distributor for Fiat has also announced more details about the new 500. The car, which recently won the European Car of the Year award, arrives in Australia in March. The range starts from AU$22,990 and there will be three four-cylinder engines on offer: a 1.2-litre and 1.4-litre petrol, as well as a 1.3-litre turbo-diesel.
BMW 135i coupe
BMW's 1-Series coupe will launch here powered by the same 3.0-litre twin-turbo straight-six engine as the widely lauded 335i. With 225kW of power and 400Nm of torque on tap, BMW claims the small coupe with a big heart can do the 0-100km/h dash in 5.3 seconds. No pricing has yet been announced.
BMW X5 3.0sd
Also making its Australian debut is a variant of the BMW's large 4WD, the X5 3.0sd. With a twin-turbo 3.0-litre straight-six diesel generating 200kW of power and 530Nm of torque, this X5 can do the 0-100km/h dash in 7.2 seconds. Driven more sedately the big 4WD scored an official fuel consumption rating of 8.8L/100km. Not bad for a car weighing over 2.1 tonnes. Prices begin at AU$102,800.
VW Passat R36
Volkswagen took the covers off its range-topping Passat model, the R36. Powered by a 220kW 3.6-litre narrow-angle V6, the big sedan or wagon comes with the same chrometastic nose as the Golf R32. Pricing begins at AU$64,990.