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If you thought you were spoiled for choice in 2011 with all the new cars you could buy, it’s not going to get any easier in 2012.

General Motors’ European brand Opel and Nissan’s luxury offshoot Infiniti are two of the brands that will be new to Australia in 2012, with more Chinese brands – such as Foton – expected to take the number of automotive brands offering passenger cars, SUVs and light-commercial vehicles in Australia past the 50 mark.

All the brands will be vying for a relatively small but fiercely competitive market, which in 2011 is set to account for a million-plus new-vehicle sales for only the fourth time.

And whether your budget will stretch only to a sub-$20,000 city car such as a three-door Kia Rio or you’ve lucked-in with the lotto and are ready to place about $750,000 on an extended wheelbase version of the Rolls-Royce Ghost limo, 2012 will bring an array of exciting new options.

Where do we start with highlights? If relatively affordable rear-wheel-drive sports cars are your thing, there will be at least two in the form of the twinned Toyota 86 (above) and Subaru BRZ (above, top).

A BMW M-car is always worth a note in the new-car diary and in 2012 it will be the turn of the M5 executive express (below), powered by a new twin-turbo V8.

There are new-generation versions of famous nameplates, including the Beetle (Volkswagen), Impreza, and Astra (Opel, below).

Want a brand spanking new version of an icon (that, well, still kinda looks the same)? Step forward the 991-series Porsche 911 (main image top, in Cabriolet form).

Mercedes-Benz will initiate a new wave of small models aimed at younger buyers with the latest-generation B-Class (bottom picture).

Environmentally friendlier motoring will also continue to become more active, as Toyota’s Prius family expands with the Prius C city car and Prius V wagon, Nissan releases its Leaf electric car (in the first half of 2012) and Holden joins the emissions-fighting automotive revolution with its hybrid electric Volt (below) in late 2012.

The number of new models – whether all-new, updates or additional variants of an existing vehicle range – is set to surpass three figures in 2012.

During the last week of 2011 and carrying into 2012, CarAdvice will bring you all the details on all the new cars coming to showrooms over the next 12 months.

Our comprehensive coverage will include stories on each of the individual brands – so you can see what your favourite car makers are up to in 2012 as well as satisfying your curiosity – and also provide segment-by-segment guides.

The stories will be released over the next two weeks, so stay tuned to the site. After all, we don’t want to spoil you!

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from all the team at CarAdvice.

Jez Spinks
Editor in Chief

 

 




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