The best looking cars of 2018

The best looking cars of 2018

Got the look

Text: Daryl Lee

2018 was a big year for the automotive sector-new emissions testing protocols in the wake of the Dieselgate scandal came into force, with premium automakers finally putting pure electric vehicles into production. The Audi e-tron, BMW iNext concept car, Jaguar I-Pace and Mercedes-Benz EQC being notable examples released this year.

It was also a year of some truly gorgeous cars, which we'll be detailing our top five below. These are some of the most beautiful cars that we've had the pleasure of clapping eyes on in 2018, and if we've been really good, perhaps even drive them at some point in the future.


Audi Q8

For year, there hasn't been a slinky, low-roofed SUV in the Audi lineup, in the style of the BMW X6 or Mercedes-Benz GLE Coupe. That all changed this year when the Q8 made its debut. Far less conservatively styled than its sibling the Q7, the Q8 is big, bold with its giant maw, and if you're so inclined, it can also be very, very orange.

Interestingly enough, Audi is really proud of how, in spite of its svelte lines, it offers up big practicality as well, even going so far as to claiming its interior space "exceeds that of the direct competitors in almost all relevant dimensions". Shots fired, then.


Aston Martin Vantage

As history has proven, it's impossible for Aston Martin to make an ugly car.

Anyway, the Aston Martin Vantage. While the car isn't unattractive by any stretch of the imagination, the Vantage's mien, with its grille-less nose and enormous air dam can take a bit of getting used to. Ditto for the integrated ducktail spoiler at the rear of the car.

Whatever your opinion, just take a moment to appreciate the design of the Vantage and how incredibly clean its bodywork is, relying on curves instead of lines to express itself. Especially in this shade of silver, it almost looks like it's been sculpted from a single block of metal.


BMW 8 Series Convertible

Now, we could argue for hours about why BMW has chosen to resurrect its 8 Series badge after a two-decade hiatus, but we're not here to debate politics. We're here to talk about why the 8 Series is one of the best looking cars this year.

It checks all the classical sports car boxes: low slung, long bonnet and short tail. But more than that, the 8 Series also has a snub-nosed, shark-like front silhouette and a subtle wedge shape to its profile. Or perhaps our favourite design feature, the car's deep, sculpted flanks.

Oh, and did we also mention it's available as a soft-top convertible? Which automatically adds 30 or so point to a car's sexinesss quotient.


Jaguar I-Pace

There are perhaps some members of the public who aren't yet convinced that Jaguar is a brand on the up-and-up, bought by people on the up-and-up.

Surely, the F-Type, F-Pace and most recently the E-Pace should be enough, but if that's not enough proof, perhaps the I-Pace will change their minds. Hey, Dua Lipa has done a campaign for it, so it must be cool, yes?

But we jest. We love the I-Pace not just because of its very of-the-moment electric drivetrain, but because of its striking resemblance to Jaguar's F-Type sports car. You don't have to squint at I-Pace too hard to see the familial resemblance, especially in how it looks from the side.


Mercedes-Benz CLS

You might find it surprising that the progenitor of the four-door coupe breed, the Mercedes-Benz CLS has never exactly been beautiful,

Still, it's third time lucky for Mercedes-Benz with this one here. Unlike its two predecessors, this CLS finally has a pert bum, with a rising line at its waist accentuating its newfound rear-end perkiness.

There's also some visual trickery going on here, because at first glance, the CLS seems far more compact than it actually is, which speaks well for the tautness of its design.

That's not to say it's any less imposing, and you only have to pull up next to something more 'normal' sized to know how much the CLS eclipses them.