As the end of 2023 fast approaches with temperatures plummeting, the Southern Group members have enjoyed a very productive month.
Aside from ending with the annual scarefest (or letdown) known as Halloween, October 2023 saw several manufacturers holding launch events for new and updated models, including the Ford Transit Custom, Vauxhall Corsa and the new Volvo EX30 EV. Meanwhile, Škoda has been busy teasing its new fourth-generation Superb with a number of sketches, with its hotly-anticipated new flagship model slated to go on sale next year.
Last month, Southern Group members continued to be as prolific as ever, producing an array of new car reviews, features, guides and news stories across both print and web. Here, we run through the top highlights for October 2023.
SGMW digital round up:
An Idiot’s Guide To The Toyota Supra: History and Generations – Phill Tromans
For those who don’t know the A40 from your A80 or what German car the current Supra is based on, Phill Tromans takes a deep dive into the history of the iconic Toyota sports car for CarThrottle with a full lowdown on all five generations.
First Drive: Testing the Toyota bZ4X Electric SUV On and Off-Road – Phil Huff
Phil Huff puts the new Toyota bZ4X EV through its paces on both tarmac and mud, including a literal deep dive into its off-road ability by traversing a (somewhat) deep water crossing.
Porsche Cayenne Turbo E-Hybrid with GT Package 2023 review – Tim Pitt
Tim Pitt had some very fast seat time with the facelifted and more powerful Porsche Cayenne Turbo GT E-Hybrid last month. A car that delivers a number of large numbers with a colossal power output of 739bhp that will cost you a cool £154,000 upwards.
Ford Transit Custom Review 2023 – Phill Tromans
The Ford Transit Custom has long been the go-to vehicle for British tradespeople, and now there’s an all-new model. But does it meet the high benchmark set by the previous generation? Phill Tromans gives his verdict.
New BMW 5 Series lands with latest PHEVs and first-ever electric i5 – Natalie Middleton
Full specifications and pricing for the new eighth-generation BMW 5 Series have arrived. The executive favourite is now available as a full EV for the first time with the i5 badged model, alongside a range of petrol and plug-in hybrid models. Natalie Middleton breaks down all the details for Fleetworld.
The Big Little SUV from Genesis – Stu Bird
Stu Bird gets into the gritty details of the mid-sized Genesis GV70 2.5T to see how it stacks up against an array of premium competitors, including a very in-depth test of the seat massagers.
SGMW social watch:
In the world of EVs, Rich Gooding was busy checking out the latest array of electrified BMW models including the iX1 SUV and the new i5 saloon.
However, the new 5 Series – i5 in particular – was the star of the show. Really nicely proportioned in real life. I sampled the (£92,570 as tested here!) i5 eDrive 40 M Sport Pro: 250kW/335bhp, 312-357 miles of range, 81.2kWh of usable battery and 205kW rapid charging. #BMW #EV pic.twitter.com/W56dqICRkW— Richard Gooding (@richgoodingcom) October 24, 2023
In other car and sports-related news, SGMW secretary Chris Rees visited a football stadium for only the second time in his life. But, rather than watching the beautiful game, he chose to bring us the magnificent (and very rare) Fiat Panda Italia 90 instead.
Only the second time I’ve ever been to a professional football stadium, made all the more enjoyable by the presence of a magnificent Fiat Panda Italia 90. Coming soon to @AutoItaliaMag #fiatpanda pic.twitter.com/cuuk68glZv— Chris Rees (@quillerrees) October 19, 2023
At the October Scramble, Stu Bird’s Volkswagen T2 camper ‘Barry’ played a starring role among the cars on display at the Bicester Heritage event.
In Hawaii, Tyler Heatley went very much off the beaten path in a Jeep Wrangler to explore the remnants of a volcano eruption.
Last but not least, Phil Huff takes us into the world of video games, where he celebrated finishing Another World after only 32 years of trying (his words). Word is that he intends to finish the 1993 first-person shooter Doom by the end of the next millennia.
This won't impress many, I know, but I've finally completed Another World after just 32 years. pic.twitter.com/9eonQSdgb0— Phil Huff (@FrontSeatPhil) October 28, 2023