EVs, hybrids, Bugattis, and a ‘cheap’ BMW – that’s what CarBuyer Singapore’s most read news stories reflected this year
SINGAPORE – We trawled through the archives to see what news stories you clicked on the most in 2021, and it was a fascinating look at what makes the headlines nowadays. The buzzword is of course EVs and electrification: eight of the top 10 covered electrified cars.
But to our surprise it wasn’t the biggest selling EV brand that drew eyeballs, but the pretender to the throne. Singaporeans are still very much interested in ‘regular’ cars, with the Honda HR-V and Kia Cerato creeping in, while a ‘bargain’ BMW also made the list, as well as something decidedly Not-A-Bargain also starting with ‘B’.
Plus, we give you three stories that are vital to 2022 that more people should’ve read – and we explain why.
In CarBuyer fashion we try to break news as early as we can, and as far as we know this one was one of the first reports in Singapore to put a solid date on the arrival of Kia’s ever-popular mainstream sedan. Our first look at the updated car generated lots of looks, which isn’t a surprise given how major the facelift was this time around. For more, read our Singapore launch news, our on-road review, and our video exploring the new Kia Cerato and its even newer badge.
Tesla’s arrival in Singapore has been eye-opening, but our top news story featuring the American EV brand is a peek inside its Raffles City showroom – including a video of said showroom. As far as showrooms go, it’s not hugely impressive – even if you had to queue for a while to get in when it first opened. It’s also probably Singapore’s only car showroom where you can see bedding and other goods right next to shiny new cars.
Motorcycles hardly ever crack the top 10 since they’re something of a special interest, but the news that Singapore was getting its first, proper electric motorcycle brand was plenty attention-grabbing. That’s the case with Italian e-motorcycle brand Energica, which landed here in June. Click through to the story to read about it, read our on-road test ride, and to watch our video walkthrough of its first model, the EsseEsse.
Another week, another EV it seemed, but BMW Singapore broke the mould by revealing its fully electric version of the X3 SUV, the iX3, with the startling revelation that it’s also the least expensive X3 of the whole range, costing less than an X3 sDrive20i, and also the least-expensive midsize EV SUV from a luxury brand here, being far less costly than a Jaguar I-Pace and Mercedes-EQ EQC. It’s good too – as our test drive of the car shows! The iX3 was also part of EV Weekend, Singapore’s first and largest EV showcase.
The pandemic era has made people YOLO-fied, if there’s such a word, as sales of super-lux/performance cars are better than ever. Bugatti Singapore isn’t complaining, since it managed to sell four cars in 2021 for a grand total of (at least) S$25m – yes each car costs more than a landed house here #becauseBugatti and because they’re running out fast it’s also not just YOLO but FOMO (sorry for using those words). Why? Bugatti’s first regional showroom opened in Singapore earlier this year, and we did a video tour of it, while also getting to fondle the Bugatti Chiron Supersport.
Singapore loves SUVs/crossovers and more than anything it loves small SUVs from mainstream brands, which is why the Honda HR-V small SUV has been such a hit here. The next version is highly-anticipated and was revealed February 2021 with expectations of a release later in the year. But 2021 has ended and it’s not here – where is it? Find out at the end of this story in our ‘Should’ve Been Top 10’ news stories.
Every six months CarBuyer does its in-depth analysis of sales and trends of the car market here and it’s, as far as we know, the most detailed story of this type to be found from any media outlet in Singapore. Trumpet-blowing aside, you’ll find out which brands sold best and why, as well as the changing trends of car-buying – there’s also a shock reveal as one car type finally usurps the crown.
Volvo-offshoot EV brand Polestar firmed up its launch plans with an official announcement and confirmation of its first model, the Polestar 2. By now we’ve test driven the actual car and pronounced it a great Tesla alternative.
You can’t fool Singaporeans who are amongst the most hardcore bargain hunters in the world, which given our car prices is no surprise. But Toyota managed a surprise with its Camry Hybrid taking advantage of VES to make a big splash on its official debut in Singapore. It’s the sort of car that totally deserves excellent sales here: As our review shows, it’s less expensive than a normal petrol car, looks good, is spacious, performs well, and is damn fuel-frugal to boot.
While EV brand Polestar isn’t that well-known here, in hindsight there could be no less apt a story to show just where Singapore is when it comes to the evolution of motoring. CarBuyer broke the news that multi-brand dealership Wearnes Automotive was planning to debut Polestar in Singapore, way before the official announcement. That wasn’t all though: There was also the fact that Wearnes would cease the dealership for Nissan’s luxury brand, Infiniti – no surprise, since Infiniti will more or less cease to be for right-hand drive markets and its long-term outlook isn’t rosy either.
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