CAR Condensed: your weekly news briefing

Published: 07 September 2019

► The week's biggest car news
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Welcome to CAR Condensed, our weekly round-up of the key news stories, new cars and announcements from the past seven days. As you might expect the week before the Frankfurt motor show, it's been rammed with new cars and significant news - from the first all-electric Porsche production car to big-selling crossovers, a surprise debut from Lamborghini to our first go in the latest junior Ferrari.

Read on for our summary of all the automotive news stories that mattered in the past week.

1. Lamborghini launched its first hybrid production car

Lamborghini Sian

It's been an open secret for years that Lambo is preparing hybrid tech for its range of outrageous supercars - and now we can see why. The preposterously named Sian debuts some clever technology, not least the use of supercapacitors to store and release energy for quick bursts of acceleration. And with 808bhp and a 2.8sec 0-62mph sprint, you can well believe that it's all about the performance more than saving the planet. Read the full story on the Lamborghini Sian here.

2. Nissan showed its difficult second Juke album

Everyone mentions the Qashqai when talking of hit singles from Nissan, but the Juke isn't far off. It's been on sale for nearly a decade and ploughed a distinctively styled furrow all of its own in the burgeoning small crossover marketplace. Now time's come to replace it and this week we saw a more mature, plusher Mk2 Juke. See the full story here.

3. We saw Ian Callum's first solo design effort

It's rare that a car designer gets the chance to revisit one of his masterpieces and remaster it, two decades on. But that's exactly what ex-Jaguar styling chief Ian Callum has done in his first solo project. His Callum studio has been commissioned to rework the Aston Martin Vanquish for a low-volume restomod by R-Reforged and it's fully sanctioned by Aston Martin. Full story here.

4. Porsche stunned us by keeping the concept intact for the new Taycan production EV

Porsche Taycan

One of the most interesting new cars of the year was unveiled this week: the new Porsche Taycan. It's Stuttgart's first full electric car and the harbinger of major change at Porsche, whose next-generation junior sports cars to replace the 718 Boxster and Cayman will also be battery-powered. So pay attention to this new four-door sports saloon. Get the full lowdown on the radical EV here.

5. We're on standby for the Frankfurt motor show

The world's biggest motor show - by area - is nearly upon us and we've been busy recording all the major world debuts, expected launches and news associated with the Frankfurt motor show, or IAA, in our handy preview guide. If you want to see a full A-Z of every new car that matters at this winter's most important expo, check out our article here.

6. We tested the Ferrari F8 Tributo - and it's predictably brilliant

When's the last time Ferrari really mucked up a new car launch? It's been a while since it missed the goal, and the F8 Tributo - its latest junior V8 supercar to replace the 488 GTB - is no exception. Ben Barry took it for a drive in Italy and flat-out around the Fiorano track. 'GTB owners shouldn’t feel particularly miffed at not having the very latest thing, but as a car that delivers so much of the Pista with the extra usability and luxury of the GTB, well, I think it’s mission accomplished, F8,' he concluded. Read the full review here.

7. Cupra showed off its next car

Cupra Tavascan

The Spanish standalone brand spun off from Seat is quickly establishing its own credentials, rather than leaning on the mothership - and the Tavascan concept, unveiled this week, is an insight in to the future product line-up. It'll be at the Frankfurt motor show next week and is predictably an all-electric sports crossover. Now where have we heard that before... Read the full story here.

8. The Honda E production version is nearly identical to the concept

Hard to believe it's been two years since we saw the cutesy little Honda E in concept guise, but that's how long it's taken to turn the charismatic electric city car into a production reality. Is it quite as cute as the original? No. Is it one of the most exciting and alluring small EVs to be launched this year? Yes. Find out why here.

9. Hyundai turns its expertise to small cars

Hyundai i10

The i10 is a big-selling small car - the sort you'd recommend to someone wanting a no-nonsense, great value, well rounded city car. No wonder it did so well in the scrappage scheme a decade ago. The new one looks set to repeat that formula all over again. Find out why here.

By CAR's road test team

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