Toyota Goes All In With 2020 Corolla, Promises To Revamp Driving Experience For Buyers

Toyota’s Corolla sedan has emerged into a powerhouse for the Japanese automaker, with over 40 million units sold since the Corolla first entered production. However, all of this success and good fortune masks a car that has always never been known for its fun mannerisms, instead, preferring to be known as a dependable albeit bland piece of transportation that aims to get the job done and not much else. With the compact car segment still a viable segment in the marketplace, Toyota couldn’t afford to sit on its heels, and has thrown everything into the 2020 Corolla to try and help it defend its status as the benchmark of the compact car segment. The exterior styling of the Corolla sedan shares a lot of its DNA with the recently unveiled hatchback variant, and features a revised front fascia that is more aggressive than before, especially in SE and XSE guise, …

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2017 VW E-Golf SEL Premium – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

OK, we’re a little late to the EV game. We recently tested the Soul EV, and came away charmed by the unique driving experience, and the way Kia made the electric Soul feel special and unique – like driving a car of the future. Which is a great counterpoint to the VW Golf EV. While the Kia celebrates its EV-ness, the Golf plays it the other way – it completely feels like any other Golf, the only difference is that it has a different way of fueling up. For someone with EV anxiety, or who just wants to go electric with a minimum of fuss, it’s an easy way. But as we found out, it has surprises in store for the driver. Looks like…. a Golf Well, no problem here. The handsome, 5-door hatch has European sensibility written all over it. It’s a conservative design that’s aged well. It plays …

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2019 Hyundai Veloster Turbo R-Spec – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

We like cars that fly in the face of convention. Nissan’s Juke, Kia’s Soul, many Minis…all a little off of center, but lovable and fun. And to this list, you have to include the Hyundai Veloster. The quirky, sporty, three-door hatch that some love and has other scratching their heads, has always be an affordable funster. And now we have an all-new 2019 Veloster, and that’s always a crap-shoot. Will it keep the unique vibe, or go more mainstream and lose the plot in the second chapter? Chapter Two Well, the looks have gone from funky to aggressive, but we like it. The quirky, asymmetrical coupe with an additional rear door is still there. (It’s on the passenger side, so you’re not tumbling out into traffic). The proportions have gone from cute and chunky to wide and muscular. The oversize corporate grille is flanked by LED headlights, and it looks …

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Kia Unveils 201 Horsepower 2020 Forte GT, At Last Our Prayers Have Been Answered

When we last met the 2019 Kia Forte, it was navigating the twist and turns of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The mountain roads that dotted our route highlighted the Forte’s new chassis, as well as the spirited character that defined its exterior and interior design. Sadly, a lack of power was also evident, and it had us wondering “Where’s the Beef?” Well it appears Kia has been listening to this persistent criticism, and has at last given the Forte a proper engine to formally tango with its reworked bones, as well as a new trim the Forte GT, Living up to its sporting name, the GT brings more zest to the Forte’s DNA, starting with several visual enhancements to help separate it from the standard EX model. Like the Soul Turbo, revisions here are relatively minor, with a model exclusive body kit, a rear spoiler, two tone wheels, and a black and …

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2019 VW Jetta SE – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

We recently tested the 2018 VW Passat GT, an exciting twist on one of the carmaker’s oldest models. And now, we have the 2019 VW Jetta, its newest model. And make no mistake about it, a new Jetta is a big deal. It’s the most successful European nameplate in the US, with 3.2 million sold since 1980. And, that’s just a drop in the bucket – worldwide sales are over 17.5 million. Now we have the seventh-generation of the popular sedan, and VW has pushed the envelope to give us a bigger, better, more advanced sedan to continue to woo today’s sedan buyer. How much bigger is the big deal? Noticeably. Built on VW’s MQB platform that’s shared with a lion’s share of the lineup, the new Jetta rides on a 1.3-inch longer wheelbase, and sits 1.7 –inches longer, 0.8 inches wider, and 0.2 inches taller. While those numbers are …

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Road Test Review – 2018 Toyota Corolla SE – By Carl Malek

When it comes to offering buyers a reliable four door sedan that can safely haul people and cargo from one place to another, one venerable nameplate has always stood out among compact car buyers, the Toyota Corolla. While the bulk of the changes for 2018 are focused on its new hatchback sibling (which we tested a short while ago,) the sedan still soldiers on for 2018 with very minimal changes. But can this infusion of minimalist themed updates allow the aging Corolla to still maintain its iron grip on top of the compact sedan segment? Or is it time for this icon to get the ground up redesign it so desperately needs? To find out, we recently spent some time behind the wheel of a 2018 Toyota Corolla SE, and took it straight into the heart of Detroit to see if it can still hang with segment rivals. The exterior …

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Road Test Review – 2018 Toyota Prius C – By Carl Malek

The green car segment has seen its fair share of twists and turns over the past several years. While Tesla currently has the spotlight when it comes to pure EV offerings, Toyota and its Prii range in particular are considered by many to be the benchmark offerings in the hybrid vehicle segment. The Japanese auto giant doubled down on hybrids in the mid 1990’s with the original Prius, much to the astonishment and the occasional snicker of a few of its domestic competitors. That initial gambit has transformed into a lucrative business, with the Prii lineup redefining green car culture and technology as we know it. The 2018 Prius C aims to bring some of the Prii charm to budget minded buyers looking for a compact green car offering. But is the 2018 Toyota Prius C the sporty Prius that can appeal to these special buyers? Or is it an …

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Road Test Review – 2018 Hyundai Accent Limited – By Carl Malek

Like two sides of a coin, the 2018 Kia Rio and the 2018 Hyundai Accent have very important roles to play for their respective brands. Both offer an affordable gateway to their respective lineups, they are small, and each also offer their buyers a unique experience that drives home the mission of their respective identities. When we last spent time in the 2018 Kia Rio, we loved the Rio’s spunk and its value oriented pricing. Can the same magic apply to its more upscale corporate sibling, the Hyundai Accent? Or is it still overshadowed by the popular Elantra? Wheras the exterior styling of the Rio is catered towards excitement and promoting Kia’s wild side, the Accent is a more elegant affair. It’s part of a complete overhaul for 2018, which sees the Accent ride on an all new platform that comes jam packed with technology (more on that later.) The …

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Road Test Review – 2019 Kia Forte EX – By Carl Malek

It’s no secret that the Kia Forte has proven to be a key cog in Kia’s long term plan of revising its image. Once known for being an offering that thrived on being cheap and cheerful when it was released nearly a decade ago, the Forte has morphed into an intriguing compact sedan offering. When we last met the Forte, it was late last year, and while it had some good things going for it, the car was aging quickly against entries like the Honda Civic and the Ford Focus. Kia plans to reverse all that with the 2019 Forte, but can a new platform and more expressive exterior styling help the third generation Kia Forte seize the opportunity generated by the departure of the Focus from U.S. dealerships? Or is the Forte still a step or two behind other benchmarks in a slowly shrinking segment of the market? “Stinger …

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