With the introduction of the third generation in December 2013 the Toyota Harrier was decoupled from the Lexus RX and they are now separate entities. The Harrier has undergone extensive changes with the most notable being the futuristic frontal redesign. The driving dynamics have also changed significantly with the introduction of a 2.0 Litre powerplant.
The Ractis has proven to be a big hit in the Kenyan market thanks to its excellent fuel economy, space and affordable maintenance. It can be configured to carry passengers or luggage depending on the need, thanks to its high roof and flat fold seats. It’s closely related to the Subaru Trezia and its more or less the same car with different badges. It competes locally with the Honda Fit, Nissan Note and Mazda Demio.
The Jeep Wrangler has a strong military heritage and the rugged retro design has deliberately been maintained over the years to reflect this lineage. Similar to the Land Rover Defender, the Wrangler appeals to both off-road enthusiasts and the urbane alike. It’s considered to be a luxury car in some quarters and it can as well fit the bill but in actual sense, it’s an adaptable 4×4 that can be stripped to bare bones for hardcore off-roading.
If you are looking for a quality but yet affordable hatchback, then the Audi A3 should definitely be on top of your shopping list. It boasts of excellent build quality, spacious interior, powerful engines, decent fuel economy and good safety ratings. Though it’s more expensive to maintain compared to its Japanese rivals, these costs are offset due to its durable parts that last longer. It competes with the Subaru Impreza, VW Golf, Mazda Axela, Toyota Auris, Honda Fit, Toyota Vitz and Mazda Demio.
The 4×4 landscape is changing fast and the chasm that once existed between on-road and off-road vehicles is getting narrower. The term SUV is ambiguous and does not in itself denote off-road capability but rather a body type classification. Due to this confusion, capable off-roaders such as the Jeep Grand Cherokee are grouped together in the SUV labyrinth that carries both true 4x4s and poseurs alike. The Grand Cherokee competes with the VW Touareg, Porsche Cayenne, Audi Q7, BMW X5, Range Rover Sport and Mercedes ML/GLE.
The Subaru Forester is quickly establishing itself in Kenya as a top tier SUV outperforming most of its rivals such as the Nissan X-Trail, Honda CRV, Toyota Rav-4, Mazda CX-5, Suzuki Vitara and Mitsubishi Outlander. What sets the Forester apart is the ingenious symmetrical All-Wheel-Drive system and the choice of engines that include the turbocharged DIT engine that propels the Forester from 0 to 100 km/hour in 7.5 Seconds
The Subaru Trezia was borne out of an alliance between Subaru and Toyota in 2008 and it’s the same as the Toyota Ractis. The two cars are virtually indistinguishable save for differences in emblems and branding. In Kenya, the Subaru Trezia is lesser known and most customers opt for the Ractis but either way, the end result is the same. It competes with the Nissan Note, Mazda Demio, Honda Fit and Suzuki Swift.
The Mercedes M-Class is an imposing SUV that stands out in a crowded playing field that features heavyweights such as the VW Touareg, BMW X5, Audi Q7 and Porsche Cayenne. It leads in aspects such as comfort, safety and performance but lags in other aspects such off-road capability and 7-seater capacity.