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Autocar magazine 10 April preview

Autocar magazine 10 April preview

Jaguar considers extreme 600bhp F-type; full Skoda Octavia road test; Volvo V60 hybrid on ice; 1200 miles across Sicily in a Porsche Cayman

Another earthshaking Jaguar Land Rover exclusive is the headline news in this week’s issue of Autocar, which hits the real and virtual news-stands tomorrow morning.

As the world gears up to provide the first driving impressions of the Jaguar F-type (more about that in next week’s issue), Autocar lifts the lid on secret plans to build a rip-snorting 600bhp extreme F-type as a halo model for Jaguar’s products.

That’s just the tip of the iceberg as far as the issue is concerned. Our expert road test team pores over the Skoda Octavia to bring you the most thorough assessment of the Czech marque’s Volkswagen Golf rival. The latest Octavia majors on space and practicality, but can it match the dynamic qualities of its competitors?

We also bring you our first impressions of the Ford Fiesta ST on UK roads. We’ve already been impressed by the car on the Continent’s roads, but now we’ve had the chance to find out how well it suits our slightly more weathered asphalt surfaces. Other cars we’ve sampled in the past week include the new Vauxhall Mokka 1.7D, Nissan Qashqai 360, Mitsubishi Mirage and Suzuki Swift Sport SZ-R.

The Targa Florio remains one of the most evocative events in motorsport history, even though the perilous race around the public roads and streets of Sicily was cancelled in the 1970s due to safety fears. Now, 40 years on from the Targa’s last appearance as a full championship event, Mel Nichols retraces the route in the new Porsche Cayman, and recalls his own visit to the famous race in 1973.

Moving further north, Richard Bremner takes to the snow of Sweden in the latest Volvo V60 plug-in hybrid. Can a car powered by an internal combustion engine and electric motor effectively cope with the most challenging of road conditions? Oh, and we also find out whether it makes an exciting drift machine too…

Also in this week’s features section is an illuminating interview with GM Europe’s Steve Girsky, the man leading a turnaround in the European fortunes of Opel and Vauxhall.

Our used buying guide provides hints and tips on how to buy a sought-after 153mph Renault Clio V6 hatchback.

We welcome a new Mazda 6 onto our fleet of long-term test cars, while the owners of our Volkswagen CC, BMW 728i and Dacia Sandero provide updates on another week of eventful real-world motoring.

Budding stars of the car industry shouldn’t miss our special feature on the launching of this year’s Autocar-Courland Next Generation Award. The competition offers one lucky entrant the chance to show off their innovative automotive skills and win work experience at Jaguar Land Rover, McLaren Automotive, Peugeot, Skoda and Toyota.

Autocar magazine is available through all good newsagents, and available to download from Zinio and the Apple iTunes store.