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Countdown of the top ten coupés10th July 2014
“Well I’m not braggin’ babe so don’t put me down, but I’ve got the fastest set of wheels in town. She’s ported and relieved and she’s stroked and bored; she’ll do a hundred and forty with the top end floored.”
So sang Brian Wilson and The Beach Boys on their 1963 album ‘Little Deuce Coupe’, but coupés have certainly changed a lot over the years from the blue-lacquered Ford hot rod that adorned its cover. Commonly viewed as two-door sports cars intended f or two people, coupés have accelerated back into popularity in recent years, so we thought it’s only right we take a look at the top ten coupés on the market.
Volkswagen Scirocco Mk3 (2008- )
Heralded as something of a return to coupé form, the Volkswagen Scirocco Mk3 made quite a splash when it was first revved up in 2008, following a lengthy absence for the model. Sporty, a dream to handle and with enough pizzazz to compete with the c oncept cars in this list, it’s no surprise the Scirocco was handed five-star reviews and ‘car of the year’ awards upon its release. For an even speedier version, there’s also the Scirocco R.
Peugeot RCZ (2010- )
Were it not for the initial rapturous reception the RCZ received by both professionals and the public alike, it may never have gone into full production. What began as a simple concept car has turned into Peugeot’s most acclaimed higher-performance vehi cle in years. It looks as good as it drives, and that’s really saying something. But don’t just take our word for it; the RCZ won both ‘Coupé of the Year’ and a ‘Special Design Award’ in 2010.
Chevrolet Corvette Stingray C7 (2014- )
On the muscular end of the coupé spectrum comes the rather athletic Stingray. A three year production delay in 2011 led to plenty of anticipation, allowing GM to start marketing the next generation model to a younger demographic. Corvettes had a re putation of being something of “an old man’s car” prior to this one, but with 460 horsepower and the ability to go 0 to 60 in just 3.8 seconds, the Stingray C7 quickly quashed those notions.
Aston Martin V8 Vantage (2006- )
Strong, light and with 380bhp engine noise that will make a car enthusiast’s heart melt, the Aston Martin V8 Vantage coupé is one heck of a sports car. Named an ‘All Star’ by Automobile Magazine due to its performance, design and road manners, this baby is a rare breed (production of 10,000 is small compared to other manufacturers). Owners aren’t going to be putting them into ‘endangered species’ garages anytime soon though – it’s just too cool. It has to be outside in the wild.
BMW 6 series F13 (2011- )
If you regularly take long driving tours, you’ve got a few grand to spare and you’re looking for a coupé that can give you the feeling of luxury, your best bet is to get a luxury grand tourer. The BMW 6 Series is one of the best there is and after three generations of amends it’s almost perfect. Take it out on the open road and have a go on the 640d engine for a few hours – you’ll see what we mean.
Audi A5 (2007- )
This compact executive coupé took everything that was great about the Audi A4 like the “Quattro” all-wheel drive and then added a bit more glamour to proceedings. The 2014 Ultra trim level A5 has a newly developed 2.0 litre TDI engine for greater e fficiency; in fact, Audi believe it to be one of the most efficient coupés there is. It’s hard to argue.
Porsche Cayman (2006- )
Porsche’s Cayman model has evolved over the years, but each version has been near-perfect in different ways. Derived from the Boxster roadsters, it’s about as much fun as driving a car can be. Even the more basic models can soar up to 165mph if you were so inclined, and while it’s expensive it’s also comfortable, beautiful and somewhat life-affirming.
Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupé (2011- )
The Mercedes Benz C-Class is the Coupé equivalent of a ‘world’s strongest man’ contestant. Well-built but not so big it can’t pick up some serious speed, with a serene engine that never gives up and effortlessly switches gears. It might not be the sportiest, but it’s efficient, eye-catching and very well-trained.
Hyundai Veloster (2012- )
Hyundai returned to the coupé sector with the Velostar and naturally threw away the rule book. The design is striking; it has an additional third door on the passenger side and a built-in touch screen that can rival the clarity of any tablet device . In the turbo you can have a butch 1.6L T-GDi Gamma engine, although the European versions have lower power engines than in the US. It’s not one for speeding anyway, opting instead for a balanced all-round quality.
Toyota GT86 (2012- )
It’s always refreshing to find coupés that are 100 per cent driver focused, and the Toyota GT86 is definitely not all-show and no go. Sure, it has the 18 inch forged aluminium wheel with sport-focused tyres and a quad exhaust system, but it’s also back-to-basics in many ways. It demands to be driven rather than kept in a showroom, and that’s no bad thing. It’s reasonably priced too.