The year 2017 has been an eventful one, and equally exciting is the list of our favourite cars of this year.
It’s a bit hard to count the exact number of cars we’ve driven in 2017. However, recollecting which of those left a lasting impression on us is a much easier task, because it isn’t everyday when you drive something that’s capable of putting an inevitable grin on your face.
As we bid adieu to 2017, we recollect which all cars did we relish the most this year.
Skoda Octavia RS
The Octavia RS is an absolute hoot to drive - think of it as a budget version of some BMW M or Mercedes-AMG super saloon - that offers sports car rivalling perfomace without compromising the versatility of a regular saloon. The car looks the part with its big air-dam, 17-inch rims, twin tailpipes and rear spoiler, and is the fastest accelerating car you can buy south of Rs. 40 lakh - all thanks to its 227bhp, 2.0-litre turbo-petrol motor.
The real icing on the cake, however, is the Octavia RS’ price tag. At Rs. 25.49 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi), it provides a stellar price to performance ratio which no other car can beat.
Volvo S60 Polestar
Since Polestar has now evolved into an individual EV brand, it’s quite likely that the Volvo S60 Polestar may be the only conventional, non-electric Polestar to ever arrive in India. However, we’re glad Volvo launched it here, as not only is the S60 Polestar the best driving Volvo to ever launch in India, but also a fantastically all-rounded performance saloon. It extracts 367bhp from a 4-cylinder turbo-petrol motor, making it accelerate from 0-100km/h in a brisk 4.7 seconds.
Versus the standard S60, the Polestar sports a more sophisticated suspension setup sourced from Ohlins to add to its cornering finesse. And just like the aforementioned Skoda - it plays the value for money card rather brilliantly. At Rs. 54.96 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi) - it is around Rs. 30 lakh cheaper than similarly powerful cars from Mercedes-AMG. Tempting? You bet!
Audi S5 Sportback
If this low slung, squat Audi does not steal your attention for all the right reasons - then we’re not quite sure what else would. However, the S5 Sportback has enough substance to go with its style as well. Propelled by a V6 twin-turbo petrol engine, the S5 has more power than what you’ll ever need. Like its less powerful version, the A5, the S5 too rides well on our uneven highways. It will hug corners with a little body roll at high speeds and ensure you have a pliant ride no matter what, even over potholes and ruts at speeds.
The S5, then, is for those who dig of an ideal combination style and performance. At Rs. 70.60 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi), it isn’t easy on the wallet, but it is a proper enthusiast’s car nonetheless.
VW Polo GTI
Sleeper car? Pocket rocket? Well, there are multiple terms to define the Polo GTI. While its subtle exterior tweaks and 3-door form factor may not immediately differentiate it from the lesser Polos, it all changes once you get on the gas pedal - this 197bhp hatchback is not your average Polo by any means. That much power paired with compact hatchback dimensions make it quite city friendly as well.
So, what’s the fly in the ointment, you’d ask. Well, it costs almost as much as the Octavia RS - which is equally fast, and is based on a bigger, more luxurious, and much more practical saloon car. However, this super Polo puts down its power so effortlessly that you'd be in for a pleasant surprise - it can eclipse some more expensive cars without breaking a sweat. This is what makes the VW Polo GTI true to its hot hatch pedigree.
It look quite some time for the legendary Godzilla to make it to the Indian shores. However, from an enthusiast’s perspective, the wait was totally worth it - as the GT-R attacks corners like nothing else. Engineered with aerodynamics and handling prowess as priorities, the GT-R will not make for a very practical or luxurious road car. Also, at Rs. 2.09 crore (ex-showroom, Delhi), you can get some other, much more aesthetically pleasing supercars - but that’s alright we guess - because anyone who opts for the GT-R is not a sucker for bling, but instead, wants an analogue supercar with oodles of old-school attitude.