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10. Subaru BRZ
Recommended retail price (MSRP) starts from $25,000
For 2016, the BRZ receives the SUBARU STARLINK™ 6.2” Multimedia System with a 6.2-in. single-touch gesture display, AM/FM stereo with HD Radio®, SiriusXM® Satellite Radio, Radio Data Broadcast System, single-disc CD player, Bluetooth® hands-free phone connectivity and audio streaming, iPod® control, iTunes® Tagging, a USB port and an auxiliary input jack. Smartphone integration features Aha™ and Pandora®, along with STARLINK cloud applications iHeart® Radio, Stitcher™, Calendar, Music Player, News and Weather. Music plays through a standard 196-watt, 8-speaker audio system. New for 2016, the BRZ features a standard rear vision camera.
The Subaru BRZ marked a return to the fundamentals of sports car design, emphasizing low vehicle weight, an ultra-low center of gravity and precision steering. Powered by Subaru’s FA-Series naturally aspirated 2.0-liter, 200-horsepower BOXER engine, the BRZ is a sports car that does not sacrifice everyday comfort and practicality, including up to EPA-estimated 34-mpg highway fuel economy (with available 6-speed automatic transmission)
9. MINI Cooper S
Recommended retail price (MSRP) starts from $25,000
The MINI Hardtop 4 door combines the legendary go-kart handling that MINI customers love with newly added utilityin the form of two new added doors. The iconic exterior design of the original in the small car premium segment is authentically transferred to the specific proportions of the new 4 door body. With the wheelbase expanded by 2.9 inches and the body lengthened by 6.3 inches as compared to the new MINI Hardtop, the 4 door model provides greater freedom in terms of interior use. At the rear of the MINI Hardtop 4 door there are three seats, and passengers here benefit from the fact that headroom is increased by 0.6 inches as compared to the 2 door model, with headroom enlarged by 0.5 inches and interior width increased by 1.8 inches at shoulder height. What‘s more, the luggage compartment space is 0.5 cubic feet larger than in the new MINI Hardtop with a total of 13.1 cubic feet.
The British premium brand is now represented with a 4 door model in the small car segment for the first time in its history. The MINI Hardtop 4 door instantly sets new records within its competitive environment in terms of legroom, headroom and luggage compartment volume. The car’s high level of variability is also supported by the 60 : 40 folding split in the rear backrest.
At the market launch of the MINI Hardtop 4 door there are two engines with MINI TwinPower Turbo Technology to choose from. A 3-cylinder engine with a peak output of 134 bhp powers the MINI Cooper Hardtop 4 door. 189 bhp is the output of the 4-cylinder engine in the MINI Cooper S Hardtop 4 door. Once again in the MINI Hardtop 4 door, the latest generation of engines ensures an exceptionally favorable balance between driving fun and fuel consumption with the likewise newly developed 6-speed manual and 6-speed Steptronic transmissions as well as extensive MINIMALISM technology. Typical MINI go-kart feeling is guaranteed due to a model-specific version of the refined suspension technology. Dynamic Damper Control with adjustable dampers is optionally available for the MINI Hardtop 4 door. The MINI driving modes ensure made-to-measure sporty flair and comfort.
8. Volkswagen Golf GTI
Recommended retail price (MSRP) starts from $24,995
After a ground-up redesign for 2015, the Golf GTI continues to add to its value package for model year 2016. The addition of a new infotainment system for 2016 provides a comprehensive suite of connectivity features. Volkswagen Group of America is one of the first in the industry to support all three available connected car systems: Apple CarPlay®, Android Auto™ and MirrorLink®. The new MIB II system offers USB and VW-Car Net® App-Connect, allowing owners with these systems to access select apps from their smartphones directly through the vehicle’s head unit. VW Car-Net’s connected vehicle services umbrella also includes connected car services, advanced telematics, and enhanced navigation available by subscription.
For 2016, a rearview camera comes standard on all models. The Driver Assistance Package (available on SE and Autobahn models) has been updated to include a number of new technologies, including Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking (Front Assist), Lane Departure Warning (Lane Assist), Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Traffic Alert, and Parking Steering Assistant (Park Assist).
7. Mazda MX-5 Miata
Recommended retail price (MSRP) starts from $24,915
Mazda officially unveiled the fourth generation MX-5 (ND) on September 3, 2014 in the United States and Spain (September 4, 2014 in Japan). The new MX-5 was presented in October 2014 at the Paris Motor Show, and in November 2014 at the Los Angeles Auto Show. The car is manufactured in Mazda’s Hiroshima plant. The vehicle was released Q3 2015.
The fourth generation MX-5 is 105 mm (4.1 in) shorter and 100 kg (220 lb) lighter than its predecessor, putting the vehicle’s estimated curb weight somewhere around just 1,000 kg (2,200 lb). The car is based on the Mazda SKYACTIV technology. There are 2 direct-injection petrol engines without turbo-chargers. The base model has a 1.5 L 129 bhp engine, and the North American (USA & Canada) version has a 2.0 L 155 bhp (116 kW) engine. A manual shift transmission is available at launch and an automatic transmission will be offered, both with 6 gears. The cockpit, steering wheel, and infotainment system are very similar to the 2014 Mazda3. The fabric roof is manually operated and can be opened/closed within a few seconds.
6. Ford Mustang GT
Recommended retail price (MSRP) starts from $24,145
Ford Mustang customers will continue to enjoy the pony car’s aggressive styling, refined chassis, and range of powerful engines including the 3.7-liter V6, 2.3-liter EcoBoost® and 5.0-liter V8, but new options and standard equipment added for 2016 make it even better.
Fans have been clamoring for the return of hood vent-integrated turn signals for years, and in a nod to heritage Ford is honoring the request, bringing back the popular feature as standard equipment for owners of the 2016 Mustang GT.
New for 2016 are several packages to enhance the look of Mustang. Black Accent Package, California Special and Pony Package each add a unique flair to Mustang. To customize the look of Mustang, buyers can now opt for a painted black roof available on EcoBoost, EcoBoost Premium, GT and GT Premium fastback models, as well as over-the-top racing stripes for both the fastback and convertible.
5. Jeep Wrangler
Recommended retail price (MSRP) starts from $23,895
New for 2016 and hailing its name from the notorious Jeep trail in Telluride, Colorado, the Wrangler Black Bear Edition adds special content to the exterior and interior of the best-selling Sport model for a distinctive on- and off-road look.
Originally introduced on the 2015 Wrangler, the Rubicon Hard Rock Edition carries forward the capability-enhancing features of the Rubicon model while including a nine-speaker Premium Alpine audio system and Low Gloss Black grille with High Gloss Black inserts.
Returning for 2016, the Jeep Wrangler Freedom Edition offers value to customers with unique exterior and interior appointments. For each Wrangler Freedom Edition sold, Jeep will support the United Service Organizations Inc. (USO) as part of the Jeep Operation Safe Return initiative.
Jeep Wrangler Willys Wheeler – the popular and sought after model that salutes the earliest civilian Jeep vehicles with additional off-road hardware for increased capability – also returns for 2016.
Wrangler has always had a unique variety of colors to choose from, and 2016 is no different. New exterior colors include Rhino Mojave Sand and Hypergreen. Additional colors for 2016 include: Billet Silver, Black, Bright White, Firecracker Red, Granite Crystal, Hydro Blue and Tank.
4. FIAT 500 Abarth
Recommended retail price (MSRP) starts from $22,495
For 2016, the Fiat 500 Abarth model feature the Uconnect 5.0 system with a 5-inch touchscreen that enables handsfree calling via Bluetooth-equipped phones, as well as voice-command control of AM/FM, and optional SiriusXM Radio and navigation system. Digital music can be streamed wirelessly from compatible Bluetooth smartphones or audio players supported by a media hub equipped with an auxiliary jack and USB port that enables recharging and seamless operation of portable devices. An integrated CD player offers additional media flexibility.
New exterior paint colors for 2016 are Grigio Cenre (light gray), Rhino (dark gray), Celeste Blue (light blue) and Giallo Moderna Perla (Modern Pearl Yellow). Additional exterior customization is available with new-for-2016 wheel options.
3. Ford Fiesta ST
Recommended retail price (MSRP) starts from $20,970
The 2016 Ford Fiesta ST delivers everything customers could want in compact car performance. Drivers can relish in a precision sport-tuned suspension and braking system, electronic Torque Vectoring Control to reduce understeer, and three-mode electronic stability control.
Motivation comes courtesy of a 1.6-liter EcoBoost® four-cylinder engine with standard six-speed manual transmission. “This is a rewarding car to rev,” notes Mark Roberts, Ford Fiesta calibration supervisor. “With 177 lb.-ft. of torque available from just 1,600 rpm and 202 lb.-ft. by 3,500 rpm, Fiesta ST gives the performance and feel of an engine twice its size. There’s no waiting at all for the power to just push you back in your seat.”
Complementing the performance is an aggressive, sporty design, unique ST high-mounted rear spoiler, interior trim accents, leather shift knob and ST sport cloth seats for that race car feel.
Customers who buy a new Fiesta ST get a complimentary day of performance driving instruction from ST Octane Academy at Miller Motorsports Park in Tooele, Utah.
2. GMC Canyon
Recommended retail price (MSRP) starts from $20,955
New for 2016, Canyon offers a 2.8L Duramax turbo-diesel engine that takes its segment-leading capability and efficiency to new heights, including a maximum trailering rating of 7,700 pounds (3,493 kg).
The standard engine remains a 2.5L four-cylinder that’s rated at up to 27 mpg on the highway, while an available 3.6L V-6 tops competitors’ V-6 offerings with up to 1,590 pounds (721 kg) of payload and up to 7,000 pounds (3,175 kg) maximum trailering.
Also new for 2016, phone integration technology enhances connectivity and promotes safer driving through Canyon’s next generation IntelliLink system. This new technology allows smartphone users to connect with applications such as navigation, hands-free text messaging, entertainment and news through IntelliLink’s display screen.
1. Honda Civic
Recommended retail price (MSRP) starts from $18,640
The taut and tidy overall proportions of the new Civic Sedan are complimented and accentuated by its design details, including its sleek, swept-back bodylines, its sharp and aggressive face, and its bulging wheel arches. The hood features sharply defined character lines that draw the eye forward and down to the Civic’s aggressive new face, highlighted by a chrome-plated Honda “wing” that runs the full width of the front fascia and is flanked by available new LED headlights in an in-line configuration. The new Civic’s ultra-thin A-pillars lend the cabin an open, airy feeling with excellent forward visibility, while the aggressively sloped roof line connects seamlessly with gracefully arching C-pillars that carry the curvature of the roof rearward to the outside rear corners of the long deck, where they intersect with distinctive C-shaped “light-pipe” LED taillights.
The sharply creased and curving upper-body side line swells over the rear wheel arches and curves aggressively inward to join the upper bend of the distinctive LED taillights, while the upswept lower-body side line is bisected by the bulging rear wheel arches before bending inward to meet up with the rear bumper’s upper surface. The overall effect is one of dynamism and premium quality with an unmistakable and yet thoroughly modern Civic design aesthetic.
Honda’s vehicle packaging expertise, along with the Civic’s longer wheelbase and wider body, results in the most spacious interior in the competitive class. With 97.8 cubic feet of interior passenger space, the 2016 Civic Sedan delivers top-of-class comfort by giving its occupants a sense of spaciousness and premium comfort beyond the compact class with ample headroom, legroom, shoulder clearance and side head clearance.
A class leading 84.3 degrees of forward visibility is aided by a new, ultra-thin A-pillar design, 18.2 mm (0.72 inch) narrower than the A-pillar in the outgoing 2015 Civic. Even the forward visibility of rear-seat occupants is taken into account, as the new Civic features newly shaped front seatbacks and a smaller head restraint.