Editor's Picks of Singapore Motorshow 2023

Editor's Picks of Singapore Motorshow 2023

James Wong
James Wong
12 Jan 2023

We’re hot off the press day from the Singapore Motorshow 2023, and it’s already clear that it’s going to be an exciting year.

There will be some highly anticipated sports cars, including sport wagons - the latter being a niche that hasn’t really been filled until now. Electric vehicles, naturally also feature on our list - many in the more affordable spectrum, offering even more choices for the wider market. Then there is of course, the made-in-Singapore Ioniq 5, the first time in decades we’ve got a car that’s being put together right here on our little island.

Read all about the new models that caught our eye, in alphabetical order, now:

BMW M3 Competition Touring with M xDrive

We dreamt of this car over sleepless nights, and BMW M has finally brought it to us, like a fantasy come alive. Combining 510 hp with the beautiful Touring 3 Series body, it’s probably the coolest M3 on sale right now. The tailgate glass opens conveniently too to allow you to pick small items from the boot. How can anyone resist this?

Pricing with COE: $560,888
Availability: Now

BYD Seal

We have no idea where BYD is going with the marine theme, but it’s cool and it works rather well. And none better than in the Seal, a low slung four-door sedan that looks like a concept car that somehow got signed off as a production vehicle. It’s just as stunning inside, with premium materials and a mature, sophisticated design that’s as shockingly good as when we first saw the Atto 3. We don’t have pricing details yet, but we do know it may be available in RWD, AWD and even FWD, so it looks like there will be plenty of options in time to come. This is a potential winner, yet again, from the looks of it.

Pricing with COE: TBA
Availability: 2H 2023

Hyundai Ioniq 5 First 100

We’ve seen the Ioniq 5 roam the streets of Singapore, but this one’s a bit different - it’s the first made-in-Singapore limited edition IONIQ 5 First 100. If you haven’t caught on, Hyundai is building a factory in Singapore that will produce these Ioniq 5s, called the Hyundai Motor Group Innovation Center in Singapore (HMGICS in short, phew). Unique details of the First 100 cars include ‘First 100’ car badges, commemorative ‘EVS’ plates numbered 1 to 100 (more on that later), a Gravity Gold Matte exterior, Dark Pebble Grey interior and Merlion embossing on seat headrests.

Now, about those plates: there is a charity auction running concurrently of the special LTA-endorsed ‘EVS’ VRNs that are totally unique and unprecedented in the local market. Special arrangements have been made for this one-off VRN series to be made available, presumably because the Ioniq 5 is the first made-in-Singapore car in decades. Bidding began at 2.30pm on 12 January and will remain open until 19 January, 6pm or until VRNs run out. All bidding proceeds will be donated to the President’s Challenge. Support local!

Pricing with COE: From S$249,800 (excluding VRN)
Availability: Now

Kia Niro EV

The Kia Niro Hybrid is our Hybrid of the Year 2022, so there’s a fighting chance that the Niro EV may be in the running for Electric Car of 2023, right? More of the same good stuff, including a 201 hp / 255 Nm drivetrain powering the car from 0-100 km/h in 7.8 seconds, and we can’t wait to try this on the road.

Pricing with COE: $189,999
Availability: Now

Lotus Emira

We’ve seen the pre-production Emira last year, so it’s great to finally witness the car in its full glory at the Motorshow. Will this final send-off of ICE for Lotus find its footing in the local market? It remains to be seen, but we’re liking what we see so far, especially the manual gearbox option.

Pricing with COE: TBA
Availability: Now

Mazda MX-30

Trust Mazda to go off-kilter in a very, very appealing way. The MX-30 has coach doors to rival a Rolls-Royce Cullinan, while having a refreshing interior that’s airy and spacious. Expect 143 hp, 271 Nm and a range of 224 km.

Pricing with COE: $178,888
Availability: Now

Mercedes SL-Class

Developed ground-up by AMG, the new SL is not quite like the SLs of old. The new car has a more cab rearward style, with shorter rear overhangs, in the style of the AMG GT. But it still has a softer, more approachable side thanks to its retention of a soft-top roof and space for 2+2 seating (but you’d really only want kids at the back). The range begins from the SL 43 and tops out with the SL 63, the latter yet to be launched in Singapore. The 43 variant uses a 4-cylinder engine paired with a mild hybrid system, and is available with rear-wheel drive only, while the SL 55 is available with 4MATIC+ only.

Pricing with COE: $745,888 (SL 43) and $867,888 (SL 55)
Availability: Now

Nissan Ariya

The Ariya is a real pleasant release from Nissan, a maturing of its efforts to grow from strength to strength. It is every bit the modern BEV but with a sophisticated character that shows the way of where Nissan is headed, and we like it a lot. It feels premium, looks premium, and we hope it drives that way too, without premium pricing.

Pricing with COE: TBA
Availability: TBA

Nissan X-trail e-POWER e-4ORCE

The 4th e-POWER model to be released in Singapore, The X-trail matches a turbocharged engine with twin electric motors that power all four wheels. You get 500 Nm of instant torque (yep, you read that right) which makes this the most exciting e-POWER model we’ve seen to date. It’s no secret we are fans of e-POWER, so the X-trail is one to watch!

Pricing with COE: $240,000
Availability: Now

Skoda Enyaq Coupe iV

Well this was a bit of a surprise. We didn’t expect to see a new car from Skoda, so this one is very welcome indeed given we’ve not seen any BEVs from the brand in Singapore. The Enyaq is large and has presence in person, with a mesmerising illuminated front grille and lots of interior room. Think Cayenne Coupe, but with a BEV drivetrain and a simply clever price tag.

Pricing with COE: TBA
Availability: TBA

Subaru WRX Wagon GT-S EyeSight

If you didn’t have the means for an M3 Touring, it’s well worth looking at the WRX Wagon (no, really). We drove it on a circuit at Changi, and it is a surprisingly good handler with a well-balanced gait, with the sort of agility that you expect from a coupe, not a wagon. And surprise, surprise, the CVT gearbox is rather good, not being a hindrance at all to proceedings. The new enlarged 2.4-litre turbo boxer helps to give it proper pace too, making the WRX Wagon a true GT-like car. If you want some extra finesse, go for the tS versions which go for $10k more (it’s not a huge difference in our view).

Pricing with COE: $256,800 (additional $10,000 for tS version)
Availability: June 2023

Toyota GR86

Well, the GR86 really is all we want from a compact sports car, really. None of the frills that we really need, and all of the goodness that comes from being a Toyota (dependability and all the rest of it), while being a true purist’s tool. Also, the display car has a manual gearbox, and Toyota Singapore has full intentions to bring in the GR86 with a stick shift. Scored points in our book, that’s for sure.

Pricing with COE: ~$240,888 (MT), ~$248,888 (AT)
Availability: April 2023

Volkswagen Golf R

You get all of the familiar ingredients - 4MOTION, DSG and a 300+hp 2.0-litre engine (315 hp to be exact). Now there’s a Drift Mode, thanks to rear axle torque vectoring, which brings the R up to speed with the likes of the Mercedes A45 AMG and Audi RS 3. Rumour has it that that a standard Golf R will be offered as well as a more expensive one with Akrapovic and R-Performance package (latter is on display at the show).

Pricing with COE: TBA
Availability: Q2 2023

Volkswagen ID. Buzz

This is probably the vehicle that stole everyone’s heart at the show. With its cartoonish proportions, happy-go-lucky demeanour and an interior that puts everyone in the mood for a party, the ID. Buzz is both an European answer to the Alphard/Staria as well as being the lifestyle vehicle that might just bring VW back its legion of hippie fans.

Pricing with COE: TBA
Availability: 2023


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