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Mid-Size SUVs

2024 Subaru Solterra Touring review by Ben Lewis

In the world of automakers, Subaru is a smaller one, which means it sometimes pairs up with other manufacturers to help create vehicles at a more affordable cost. It has worked great for the brand, teaming up with Toyota, they have now created two generations of the BRZ sports car, (aka Toyota GR86) that are a complete delight to drive. While the marketplace seems to be adding new EV’s weekly, Subaru – along with many of the Japanese automakers – have been slow to market. And EV’s are expensive and time-consuming to create. Which meant it was a perfect time …

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2024 Lexus TX 500h F Sport Review by Ben Lewis

A couple interesting trends have been happening the last year or so in SUV world. First of all, everyone is going rugged – Subaru Wilderness, Honda Trailsport, etc. And design is also going that direction – the Hyundai Santa Fe, Land Cruiser and others celebrating being big, blocky and in your face. The other trend that’s heating up again is the three-row SUV. While we’ve seen vehicle likes the Kia Telluride being a big hit, new models that are less off-road and more lux like the Toyota Grand Highlander, to the Volvo XC90 are trying to muscle in on the …

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2024 Subaru Crosstrek Wilderness Road Test Review by Ben Lewis

If you haven’t noticed, we’re seeing a resurgence in rugged, off-road type crossovers and SUV’s. From Honda’s TrailSport to Nissan’s Rock Creek editions, people are lining up for that extra-capable, extra-rugged look. And Subaru has been happily playing in that sandbox. We’ve tested the Outback Wilderness, and Forester Wilderness, and enjoyed them both, for their added outdoors-capable look, and upgraded running gear. So now, Subie has added an all-new Crosstrek Wilderness model, and we couldn’t wait to get our hands on it! Crosstrek Gone Wild! Well, there’s no doubt about what you’re seeing when you look at it – this …

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Road Test Review – 2024 Maserati Grecale & 2023 Quattroporte Trofeo – Two Flavors Of Performance

Maserati is preparing to shift its EV ambitions into high gear with models like the recently announced GranCabrio Folgore attempting to make EVs stylish options for buyers willing to make the plunge. However, Maserati also knows that its ICE models will ultimately provide the fuel needed for these EV offerings to expand and cement themselves in the marketplace. Maserati recently allowed us to spend time with both the Quattroporte and the Grecale Trofeo models to not only show us what they bring to the table, but how they will help secure Maserati’s future.   2023 Maserati Quattroporte Trofeo The 2023 …

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2024 Mazda CX-5 Carbon Turbo Edition by Ben Lewis

We recently spent some time in the Mazda CX-50, which would seem to be designed to replace the current CX-5, which is their best-selling model. Mazda replaced the CX-3 with the CX-30, and the CX-9 with the CX-90. So were we wrong. Maybe, as the carmaker continues to offer the CX-5, so we felt it was good time to drive one again and see how it shapes up against the ’50. Zircon Sand Persuasion One thing that gives away that this is a 2024 is the new Carbon Turbo Edition, which wears an exclusive paint color that Mazda calls Zircon …

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2025 Toyota 4Runner Proves Wait Is Worth it, Gets Major Upgrades

The Toyota 4Runner was once a mascot for just how long an automobile could possibly go without any major updates. The last time it was revamped was 15 years ago with the outgoing 4Runner entering the market when President Obama was newly elected. That long wait gave Toyota engineers plenty to think about as they prepared to make the 4Runner stand out to a new generation of young buyers. New Styling Makes Impact One of the prominent changes that buyers will notice is the 4Runner’s revamped exterior styling. The front fascia is chunkier and more aggressive than before with some …

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2024 Hyundai Tucson Limited AWD review by Ben Lewis

Hyundai is having a great run on vehicles lately. From the Ioniq 5 and Ioniq 6 EVs, The updated Kona and even the rocket ship Elantra N. But when you talk about the bread-and-butter vehicles for the brand, you can’t forget the popular Tucson SUV. And since we love bread and butter, it felt like time to check out a 2024 Tucson. Evocative Design One of the reasons for the Tucson’s popularity is its gorgeous design. Up front, the “parametric” grille features half-mirror daytime running lamps hidden inside, only visible when illuminated. And while the Tucson has been around a …

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Road Test Review – 2024 Hyundai Santa Fe – This SUV Is The Real Deal

When Hyundai announced that it was revamping the Santa Fe for the 2024 model year, we wondered how the Korean car maker could possibly top the previous generation model. While it was starting to show its age, the previous generation Santa Fe had a strong focus on comfort and technology. This time around, Hyundai wanted to bring the Santa Fe back to its roots with the company bringing rugged charm to the Santa Fe’s bag of tricks. But is it all enough to bring the fight to a new crop of SUV entries?   Boxy Shape Mixes Santa Fe With …

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Road Test Review – 2024 Toyota Grand Highlander – Offshoot of Iconic Highlander SUV Goes Big

The Toyota Grand Highlander is the answer to a question few had the thought to ask, what would happen if you took the iconic Highlander and made it bigger and added more tech to good measure? The 2024 Toyota Grand Highlander is poised to make a splash but does it have enough in its arsenal of tricks to help carve a slice of the market for itself?   Toyota’s Grandest Highlander Boasts Plenty of Personality The exterior of the Grand Highlander goes off in its own direction and will be a noticeable departure from its brand mate. While the standard …

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2024 Mazda CX-50 2.5 Turbo Premium Plus review by Ben Lewis

Mazda is revamping its lineup. First, the CX-3 was replaced by the handsome CX-30, The CX-9 was put out to pasture for the new CX-90. And they’ve just introduced the CX-70, basically a 2-row version of the CX-90. About a year ago, Mazda also introduced the CX-50, but the CX-5 still remains. At least for 2024. But it’s clear the ’50 is the future of their compact SUV. Worth another look? You bet. Hot New Looks The CX-50 follows the new design language we’re also seeing in the CX-30 and CX-90. They look wider, more muscular and substantial than the …

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2024 Volkswagen Atlas Cross Sport SE review by Ben Lewis

3-row SUVs are hot these days. We recently tested the Kia Telluride, and the Mazda CX-90 both great vehicles. Another player we like a lot is the VW Atlas. Putting all the VW traits of fun-to-drive, good value and Euro-style together makes for a popular vehicle. And VW is smart, too. They realize there are some buyers who like the big size, but don’t really need that 3rdrow. And that frees up the designers to do something a little sportier. So, they created the Atlas Cross Sport. Well, it’s been a few years, and VW has just brought an updated …

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2024 Mazda CX-90 3.3 Turbo S Premium Plus AWD road test review by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the all-new Mazda CX-90 PHEV 3-row SUV, and we loved the looks the upscale interior and wonderful driving dynamics. That tester was fitted with the optional Plug-in Hybrid powertrain, featuring a 2.5-liter, 4-cylinder engine. With up to 26 miles of pure EV driving it’s a pretty cool setup. But what had us really salivating was the all-new 3.3-liter, turbo in-line 6-cylinder powerplant –aimed at BMW and Land Rover territory, a huge step up from the previous CX-9 model, which we loved, but only offered a turbo 4-cylinder engine. If you want to play with the big boys, …

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2023 Kia Sorento X-Line SX-Prestige AWD review by Ben Lewis

2023 Kia Sorento X-Line SX-Prestige AWD review by Ben Lewis We recently tested the Kia Telluride, and it reminded us of why it’s been such a huge success – it’s a great looking, great-performing, full-size 3-row SUV. But its amazing popularity may have shadowed another great 3-row Kia SUV, the Sorento. So, let’s pull the Sorento into the sunlight and take a look! Handsome and Rugged The Sorento has its own look apart from the Telluride, and in X-Line trim, looks just as rugged. The front starts things off with an aggressive stance, with Kia’s familiar “Tiger Nose” full-width grille, …

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2025 Ford Explorer Gets New Trim Ladder & New Look, Starts At $41,220

The Ford Explorer has always been an icon in the ongoing SUV wars, but if you were to look at the state of affairs when it came to its trim ladder, things were starting to get a bit complicated. Ford has decided to simplify things for 2025 with the new 2025 Ford Explorer aiming to not only clean up some excess flab for the new model year but also add new levels of tech and style to the venerable three-row hauler too.   Explorer Exterior Gets Touched Up, But Interior Steals The Show One of the things that Explorer buyers …

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Mazda Formally Unveils 2025 CX-70, There’s More Here Than The Sum Of Its Parts

Mazda’s commitment to the SUV segment has grown over the past few years. Models like the CX-50, CX-30, and even the flagship CX-90 are keen to show that the Japanese auto brand is willing to play with some of the most iconic high rollers in the segment. That includes the two-row side of the coin and Mazda has decided to fill a gap in its lineup with the all-new 2025 Mazda CX-70 which slots in between the CX-90 and the smaller CX-50 in the brand’s SUV lineup.   It May Look Like A CX-90 But Look Closer At first glance, …

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2024 Dodge Hornet R/T Plus review by Ben Lewis

The times, they are a changin’ – especially for muscle car enthusiasts. We’ve been seeing lately a lot of “Final Editions” of V8 muscle cars, as the market is turning to turbo 4 and 6 cylinders, as well as hybrid and EV vehicles. That’s the bad news…the V8 seems to be on its last legs. The good news – carmakers on Dodge aren’t giving up on performance, they’re just taking it in new directions. One that’s especially interesting is the new Dodge Hornet R/T. It’s got a whole lot of cool stuff going on, from a plug-in hybrid turbo 4 …

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2025 Chevrolet Equinox Gets Radical Revamp, Adds Activ Trim

Chevrolet may be preparing to place a big bet on BEVs in the future but while the Equinox EV is just now beginning to make its way to dealerships, Chevy knows that not everyone is ready to make the switch to pure electrification just yet. These customers still crave an ICE alternative and the 2025 Chevrolet Equinox aims to keep these customers firmly in the fold   Equinox Activ Spearheads Revamp, Interior Gets New Infotainment System Unlike the outgoing Equinox which had flowing lines and an aerodynamic look, the 2025 model appears to have taken inspiration from the Chevrolet Trailblazer …

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2024 Hyundai Kona Limited AWD review by Ben Lewis

It seems like we often spend the Holidays in Kona. But donʻt get jelly, because itʻs the Hyundai Kona, the companyʻs cheerful small crossover/SUV. Actually with an all-new model for 2024, maybe a little envy is due. So is the new model a little slice of paradise? Letʻs find out. Bigger, Bolder and Electric The first clue that things have changed is the massively different exterior design.  Hyundai says that while the previous model started as an ICE (internal combustion engine) that migrated to an EV, for the new model, they started with the EV look, and then applied that …

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2024 Kia Telluride SX-Prestige X-Line V6 AWD review by Ben Lewis

Kia and its sibling Hyundai have been on a roll for a while now. Lately, itʻs been establishing a big footprint in the EV world with the Kia EV6 and the all-new Kia EV9 3-row SUV, along with the Hyundai Ioniq 5 an Ioniq 6. But we think the thing that really got the ball rolling for Kia was back in the 2020 model year, with the then all-new Telluride. Here was a 3-row SUV that was taking on everyone from the Japanese makers to the Domestics, Europeans and Luxury makers – and beating them all at their own game.  …

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2026 Cadillac Vistiq Brings Escalade IQ Luxury Into Smaller Package, Expands Cadillac’s EV Lineup

It wasn’t too long ago that we first got a glimpse at the Cadillac Optiq EV which was supposed to be the brand’s entry into the entry-level luxury EV CUV segment. While we get to wait a bit to hear more about some of the finer details that Cadillac is not telling us about, the brand is pressing on by giving us a sneak peek at another upcoming EV model, the 2026 Vistiq which will be the fifth model in Cadillac’s EV lineup.   Escalade IQ Looks Form Backbone of Vistiq’s Identity Cadillac’s recent obsession with visual references is once …

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Road Test Review – 2024 Lincoln Corsair Grand Touring – A New Face Highlights Key Updates

The Lincoln Corsair represented a step up for Lincoln when it debuted several years ago. It replaced the aging MKC in the lineup and the Corsair introduced new levels of luxury and technology to entry-level luxury SUV buyers. However, the segment is rapidly evolving and Lincoln knows that it has to evolve to try and stay ahead of the pack. The second-generation 2024 Lincoln Corsair brings new exterior styling and some tweaks to the Corsair for the new model year, but is it all enough to make the Corsair stand out from the crowd?   New Front Fascia Gets More …

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2025 Subaru Forester Channels Old and New Into One Distinct Package For Families and Trail Warriors

While the Subaru Impreza, WRX, and, the BRZ often take the bulk of the spotlight in the eyes of the press, it can be easy to forget about the Subaru Forester. The Forester has been a popular choice among family buyers for several decades now and the Forester shoulders a large slice of the load in regards to Subaru’s broader sales. Subaru is not looking to change that too much with the 2025 Subaru Forester which blends old carryover bits with welcome revisions to sharpen its role in the SUV segment.   Familiarity Dominates Updates The 2025 Subaru Forester is …

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2023 Toyota bZ4X FWD Limited review by Ben Lewis

It may come as a surprise, but in fact the Japanese manufacturers have been slow to join the full-EV bandwagon. Yes, a loooooong time ago you could get a RAV4 EV, and the Nissan LEAF has been around for a while, but as Kia/Hyundai and the Europeans like BMW has flooded the market with electric choices, Toyota, Honda, Mazda, Nissan and Subaru have had limited offerings – often times more focusing on hybrid and plug-in hybrid models. They are slowly coming around though, and one of the most important vehicles is the all-new Toyota bZ4X, which is also sold as …

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Lexus Unveils SEMA Bound Color-Changing LX600, Futuristic Paintwork Underpin Accessories Suite

Toyota and Lexus are undertaking a massive product blitz inside the halls of the 2023 SEMA event. In addition to a special performance package for the Tundra pickup, the Japanese auto giant is also using the event to show off a special customized Lexus that not only has a color-shifting wrap but also a number of other accessories that help prepare it for plenty of adventures.   Slick Paintwork Leads Eyes To What Makes This Concept Unique The formal name of this concept is the “Lexus LX 600 Premium Lexus Associated Accessory Product (AAP), with this particular Lexus designed to …

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Could The Toyota Crown Get A New Sibling? New Teaser Image Suggests Second Crown Model Is Coming

The Toyota Crown has always been an iconic nameplate in Japan, with the Crown being exclusively associated (until recently) with an ultra-luxury flagship sedan. However, Toyota understands that consumers (Americans in particular) want more SUVs and CUVs, and it appears that the company is preparing a follow-up to the Crown liftback sedan with a teaser image that could suggest one of the Crown CUV models is making the trip stateside. Meeting Demand One Utility At a Time The lone teaser image Toyota released earlier today doesn’t reveal too much, but it does show off one of the taillights, the liftgate, …

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2023 Hyundai Palisade Calligraphy AWD review by Ben Lewis

Introduced a few years ago, the Hyundai Palisade and its sibling Kia Telluride where big hits, offering 3-rows of space, great looks and equipment all at an excellent price. There was definitely a boundary, though. The Kia was the broad-shouldered trucky sibling, where the Hyundai was softer, a bit more luxurious. Frankly, we gravitated towards the Kia – we just liked its vibe a little more. Well for 2023, Hyundai has upgraded the Palisade, and we’re excited to see a more rugged look, along with an improved interior and added features. Is it enough to sway us away from the …

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2024 Volvo XC90 Recharge AWD Ultimate review by Ben Lewis

We love Volvos. Oh yes, we do. From a brand that started out as funky and functional to elegant and excellent, they’ve always kept their unique Swedishness. And lately that has also been combined with some storming performance. See our reviews of the S60 Recharge and the C40 Recharge, and you’ll see that Volvo is showing that you can combine hybrid and traditional powertrains to create outstanding range, performance and a bright future that will also be a greener one. So now we have the opportunity to test the Swede’s largest SUV, the 3-row XC90, long a luxury bastion, and …

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2023 Lexus NX 350 Luxury review by Ben Lewis

We get asked for vehicle recommendations all the time – it comes with the job. And there are a few we consider no-brainers, it’s hard to go wrong with one. On that list would be the Toyota RAV4 and its fancy sibling the Lexus NX. In the past year we tested the NX 350 F SPORT and the NX 450h+ plug in hybrid. We’ve found each model to be notably different, so when Lexus offered us the opportunity to test the NX350 Luxury, we jumped at it. So which Lexus NX is right for you? Let’s find out! Nori Green …

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2024 Toyota 4Runner Adds New Color, Makes Us Wait Longer For Next Generation Model

The Toyota 4Runner has been a time capsule when it comes to providing buyers with old-school SUV charms and capability. The 4Runner, as we currently know it will eventually be replaced with an all-new next-generation model, but for now, the company is making us wait a bit longer and has unveiled some light updates for the 2024 Toyota 4Runner.   4Runner TRD Pro Gets New Color, Not Much Else For 2024 With the exterior and the interior not changing at all for 2024, Toyota chose to focus this light update package on colors, with the TRD Pro model getting a …

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Road Test Review – 2024 Genesis GV70 Electrified Prestige – An EV For The Traditionalist Now With More Tech

In a world where many electric vehicles are embracing exterior styling that borders on the edges of sci-fi, there is a growing pool of customers who want the EV experience but don’t want to be forced to jump headlong into a vehicle that goes too far out of their comfort zone. Genesis is aware of this and has created EVs that channel their green driving mission well and look like their traditional ICE counterparts. However, is this enough to help models like the 2024 GV70 Electrified stand out against a growing pool of EV contenders?   GV70 Electrified Features Familiar …

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2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid SX Prestige AWD review by Ben Lewis

Sometimes, when we test a vehicle, we find it so nice, we test it twice. Well, sort of. In the beginning of the year, we tested the all-new 2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid EX and were greatly impressed. So, when Kia offered us a chance to have another go, but this time in the more luxurious Hybrid SX Prestige model, we jumped at the chance. So, is it worth the extra money to add some Prestige in your life? Let’s find out! Bold Looks  When the 2023 Sportage bowed in, the looks were controversial. Calling the design “Opposites United” it made …

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2024 GMC Acadia Embraces Bigger Is More Mentality, Debuts New Tech And Performance Hardware

GMC wanted to create some much-needed buzz during the 2023 Detroit Auto Show. In an event where minor refreshes and mid-cycle updates dominated the assembled media’s attention, GMC was the only one to debut a revamped model, the 2024 GMC Acadia, which is bigger and more tech-filled than ever.   Acadia Exterior Styling Channels Yukon DNA, Interior Goes Fully Digital The exterior styling of the 2024 GMC Acadia shares a lot of its inspiration with the bigger Yukon SUV, with the front grille and headlights all being very reminiscent of that model. The SUV is also larger in virtually every …

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First Drive Review – 2023 Tesla Model Y Long Range – Tesla Aims Big In CUV Segment

The Tesla Model Y is shaping up to be a veritable sleeper hit for the upstart EV company with the CUV actually being on par in sales with the Model 3 sedan. However, until now, getting Tesla to review (especially in Michigan) was easier said than done due to various factors. As a result, we had to wait a bit to get our chance to get behind the wheel, but is the 2023 Tesla Model Y worth the wait and your hard-earned dollar?   Futuristic Styling That Doesn’t Forge New Ground To find out, we traveled to Detroit and attended …

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Road Test Review – 2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport – The Perfect Steed For Any Trail

The Honda Pilot has always been a strong seller for Honda over the years, but when we last saw the TrailSport moniker on the previous generation Pilot, it was all show and no substance, with that model having no functional add-ons whatsoever. The second generation 2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport has clearly learned from this faux paux and has arrived with usable upgrades that make it ready for the trail. But is all of this enough to help the 2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport stand out from a growing pool of rugged light trail warriors?   The Sky’s The Limit With Pilot …

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2023 BMW X1 xDrive28i Review by Ben Lewis

“Entry Level” is a term that gets a bad rap sometimes. But it can also be a good thing, especially when you’re talking about a premium automotive brand. Case in point is the BMW X1, the company’s entry-level small crossover. It’s the perfect opportunity to function as a gateway drug to the more expensive and exotic Bavarian models. And now, we have an all-new 3rd-generation X1 for 2023. But how does it stand up on its own? Let’s find out! Cool but not Polarizing Design With the bold, but maybe too bold direction of many BMW products lately, we were …

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2024 Hyundai Santa Fe Debuts Two Powertrains, Doubles Down On Capability

When Hyundai last teased the 2024 Santa Fe, we saw its revamped exterior styling and even a peek at the reworked interior. However, Hyundai left out key information on powertrains and what we could expect here in the U.S. Hyundai is now delivering the goods by unveiling more details, including the final powertrain lineup.   Two Powertrains Lead The Way For Santa Fe, Interior Bleeds Luxury When the 2024 Hyundai Santa Fe arrives in the U.S., Hyundai will bring two powertrain options along for the ride. A 277 horsepower, 2.5-liter, turbocharged, four-cylinder will be the standard engine for most Santa …

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2024 Mazda CX-90 PHEV Premium Plus review by Ben Lewis

Lately, Mazda has been updating their line with new models, but to keep it simple, they have just added a zero – so you know what belongs where. Hence, the CX-3 was replaced by the CX-30, and the CX-50 is the update for the CX-5 (which continues to be sold, for the time being). So, it wasn’t a big surprise when Mazda introduced the CX-90, the new hotness taking place of the much-loved CX-9, three-row SUV. Since each of the previous “0” models have been a distinct and delightful improvement, we couldn’t wait to try out the latest and greatest …

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2024 Mazda CX-5 Brings Minor Changes, S Model Pitched For Trim Simplicity

Mazda has revealed its updates for the 2024 CX-5, which is sold alongside the wagon-like CX-50. The CX-5 is still a strong player for the company in terms of sales, and the CX-5’s updates aim to help it stay fresh against a growing pool of updated rivals.   Cx-5 Carbon Turbo Edition Gets Zircon Sand Paint; Trim Ladder Gets Other Minor Changes As mentioned, Mazda is making minimal changes for the 2024 model year, with the returning CX-5 Carbon Turbo Edition getting Zircon Sand Metallic paint. Buyers that opt for the hue will also get Terracotta leather accents and other …

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Chevrolet Releases Pricing For 2024 Blazer EV, Starts At $56,715

Chevrolet has just started formal production of the 2024 Blazer EV at its plant in Ramos Arizpe, Mexico, and while that’s still ruffling a few feathers at the UAW, Chevrolet is continuing to press ahead and has formally revealed official pricing for the model as it prepares to roll it out to customers.   2LT Blazer EV Model Starts At $56,715, SS To Come Next Year Chevy reps confirmed that while the range-topping SS model will not make its way to consumers until next year, the 2LT model will lead the charge when the SUV begins its national rollout. A …

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Toyota Teases Next Generation 2025 Land Cruiser, Drops New Hints On Retro Design

Toyota is promising that it will rock the world with the next-generation 2025 Toyota Land Cruiser, but while our past glimpses of the off-roader have been limited to shadowy silhouettes that left little to the imagination and a current generation model that’s still exclusive to the international market, this latest teaser finally provides a formal glimpse of the design, which is expected to have a heavy retro theme.   Blending Old and New Into One Distinct Land Cruiser Package While this latest glimpse is an improvement over prior teasers, we still don’t get to see the whole SUV. Instead, we …

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Ford Sets The Time Machine To 1970s With Free Wheeling Edition Bronco Sport

The fast-selling Ford Bronco Sport is preparing to enter the 2024 model year by seemingly going back in time with the company revealing an all-new appearance package for the 2024 Bronco Sport dubbed the Free Wheeling Edition, which is a colorful homage to the era of bellbottom pants, disco, and sky-high gasoline prices.   Colorful Bronco Sport Free Wheeling Edition Attempts To Channel Retro Vibes When we last, saw the colorful Free Wheeling package in the 1970s, the F-100, F-150, Courier, and Econoline also joined the Bronco in offering buyers a wild slab of colorful decals for their rides. The …

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Jeep Launches New 2-Inch Suspension Lift Kit For Jeep Wrangler and Gladiator Models

Jeep Performance Parts (JPP) has been on a roll in recent years when it comes to the art of offering Jeep owners more performance. capability and style for their rides. JPP is eager to continue this tradition by rolling out an all-new suspension lift kit for the Jeep Wrangler and Gladiator for those that either like the lifted look or crave more ground clearance when off-roading.   New Suspension Kit Marries Jeep Capability With Bilstein Prowess At its core, the new JPP suspension kit is largely what we have seen from other kits of the past, with the new gear …

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2024 Mazda CX-50 Gets Incremental Updates, Pricing Ladder Gets Bumped Up Too

The 2024 Mazda CX-50 was designed to be an alternative to the Subaru Outback while also answering what would happen if some of Mazda’s premium touches were sprinkled onto a wagon-shaped crossover. Mazda is adding some minor updates to the 2024 model, which may seem undetectable at first glance, but aim to add incremental improvements to the driving experience for the new model year.   Updated CX-50 Suspension Has Better Trail Capability One of the updates on hand for the new model year is updated dampers, with Mazda claiming that they have been retuned for the purpose of “encouraging more …

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2024 Hyundai Santa Fe Goes In Boxier Direction, Adds More Equipment and Capability

The Hyundai Santa Fe was always proud of its futuristic lines, with the curvy look helping the SUV be one of the more distinctive entries in the crowded SUV swimming pool. However, Hyundai knows that once in a while, it needs to do something radical to help project its place in the segment. The 2024 Hyundai Santa Fe aims to do just that by not only embracing a new styling language but also with more capability and tech too.   Boxier Santa Fe Styling Exudes Old-School Charm A prominent change for 2024 is a new styling direction for the Santa …

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2023 Lexus RX 350h Snowy Drive Review

2023 Lexus RX 350h Drive Review Lexus is implementing the tech suite from the NX into the all new 2023 RX 350h. Updating the top selling SUV in Lexus’ lineup has to be done very precisely. Creating a new innovative design while not alienating the current customers can be a very difficult task.  Lexus sent us a Pre-Production model to review, as such there is no window sticker and the fit and finish might be lacking in some areas. Outside With the new update, Lexus has done a really good job of modernizing the RX. We think it looks good …

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Maserati Celebrates End Of V8 Production With Ghibli 334 and Levante V8 Ultima Editions

It’s hard to believe that Maserati has continuously made V8 engines for over 64 years, with the eight-cylinder powerplant being responsible for some of the most iconic moments in the Italian brand’s long and illustrious history. However, the push for electrification and tightening emissions laws in Europe, is forcing Maserati to end V8 production next year. Before the production lines fall silent, the company is unleashing one last wave of V8-powered models, the 2024 Ghibli 334 and Levante V8 Ultima Editions. Ultima Editions Promise Epic Retirement Party For Old-School Performance As the name implies, both the Ghibli and Levante Ultima …

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2024 Hyundai Tucson N Line Bumps Up Power, Adds Sportiness To Family Hauler

The Hyundai Tucson is far from being considered a performance SUV offering. While it’s good at hauling people and cargo, the 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine has always been a sore spot, especially with its lack of oomph. Hyundai is out to change that reputation, and while it’s still not building a formal Tucson N model (for now…), the Korean automaker has decided to do the next best thing by unveiling the newly updated 2024 Hyundai Tucson N Line.   Sporty Styling Compliments Power Bump For Tucson N Line   Like other N Line models, the 2024 Tucson N Line is largely …

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2023 Mercedes EQS 450 4MATIC SUV Review by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the Toyota Corolla Cross hybrid, and found it delightful, efficient and affordable. It’s pretty much the very affordable end of the electrification movement right now. In the middle, we have vehicles like the Volvo C40 recharge – bringing great fun and style at a slightly elevated price. And finally, we have the premium EVs, which are growing by huge amounts. BMW, Mercedes and Audi are already experienced players in this sandbox. So, what’s state of the art EV Luxury look like today? That’s what we wondered, and that’s why we’re testing the 2023 Mercedes EQS. Let’s take …

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2023 Honda Pilot TrailSport Review by Ben Lewis

Recently Honda started added the TrailSport trim to some of its vehicles, helping to keep up with many manufacturers who are going off-roady and rugged. Brands like Subaru Wilderness, Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek and others come to mind. In fact the previous Passport and Pilot had available TrailSport trims, but caught up in a game of catch up, they were more cosmetic than anything else. Well for 2023, we have an all-new Pilot, and along with that, a new Pilot TrailSport that promises to be the real deal for those who adventure off road. Does it make the grade? Let’s …

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Buick Previews 2024 Buick Envision, New Styling and Super Cruise Tech Spearhead Changes

The Buick Envision is due for an update, but Buick is showing that it’s not content with resting on its laurels, with the luxury brand releasing a lone preview image of the 2024 Buick Envision, which will vault the model into a new direction both in design and technology.   New Envision Styling Features Wildcat Cues While the smaller Buick Envista and Encore GX models beat the Envision to the punch when it came to borrowing cues from the elegant Wildcat concept, the Envision will be the largest Buick SUV yet to get styling cues from that concept. Unlike the …

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Honda Adds Sport-L Trim To 2024 CR-V Lineup, Aims To Sharpen Sales Numbers

The 2024 Honda CR-V lineup will be arriving in dealerships soon and looks to build on the impressive sales momentum that the 2023 model managed to achieve during its initial launch. Honda wants to expand this sales footprint even more by adding an all-new Sport-L model to the CR-V lineup for the new model year.   Debuting Sport-L Adds Equipment To Sport Trim Contrary to what the name might imply at first glance, the Sport-L is not an extended wheelbase model; instead, it follows Honda’s playbook for trim levels and is meant to be an equipment upgrade for Sport-equipped CR-Vs. …

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Lexus Brings Three Row Luxury To The Party With 2024 Lexus TX, Aims To Be Contender In Segment

When Lexus first teased that it was going to bring a luxury three-row SUV to the party, it was pretty obvious that the Toyota Grand Highlander would play a prominent role in its construction. However, we were curious to see what Lexus exclusive touches the Japanese luxury brand would give the TX in its attempt to make the SUV distinct and unique. Thankfully the wait is now over, and we get to see the final result, the 2024 Lexus TX   2024 Lexus TX Adds Spice To Grand Highlander Formula If the Grand Highlander is the equivalent of a steak …

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2024 Volvo EX30 Bring Electrification To The Masses, Starts At $36,145, Cross Country On The Way

The all-electric 2024 Volvo EX30 is the answer to a question that many asked at Volvo, what would an affordable EV crossover look like? Volvo is out to answer this question with its fourth all-electric model, which aims to reshape how most buyers think about the brand.   EX30 Is Ready For The City And Urban Terrain The EX30 was designed to be a more city-friendly alternative to the C40 Recharge and the XC40 Recharge, with the EX featuring styling that allows it to fall in line with Volvo’s current design language for the broader EX lineup. There’s plenty of …

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2023 VW ID.4 Standard review by Ben Lewis

The EV market continues to boom, and it seems like every day another manufacturer adds a new or updated model. We last tested a 2021 VW ID.4 we found it a great overall EV. For 2023 VW has added some updates, including a new more affordable entry-level model. With the prices for EV’s running so high, that sounds like a great option, so we decided to test it. Frugal or fail? Let’s find out! Still a Stunner Well, the ID continues to make a great first impression with a bold and capable look that’s one of our favorites. Up front, …

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Latest Round Of Lexus TX Teasers Confirms Six-Seat Layout, Enhanced Luxury Features, June 8th Debut

The 2024 Lexus TX is continuing its slow teaser campaign, and when we last saw the TX, it was showing off a small slice of the exterior; Lexus decided to reveal more today, with the company formally unveiling a new image that not only confirms the interior will live up to the brand’s prestigious standards but also hold up to six passengers in luxurious comfort.   Highlander Fundamentals Get TX Poshness The Lexus TX is poised to bring sophistication and technology to the Grand Highlander’s functional DNA. Like the Grand Highlander, the TX comes with rear seating for six occupants, …

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First Drive Review – 2023 VinFast VF8 City Edition – VinFast’s First U.S. Model Has Potential But Is Marred By Flaws

It’s no secret that Vietnamese company VinFast is facing an uphill battle when it comes to carving a slice of the sales pie for itself in the BEV SUV market. The company is part of the larger VinGroup corporate umbrella, but while the corporation has managed to make waves in its home country, it faces a tougher job of convincing Americans to embrace an EV future from a brand that does not have as much brand cache as rivals like Tesla. Despite this, the company is pressing forward with their first U.S. model, the 2023 VinFast VF8 City Edition. But …

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2023 Volvo C40 Recharge Twin AWD review by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the Volvo S60 Recharge plug-in Hybrid and came away massively impressed. With Volvo mentioning that all vehicles sold for 2023 on will be hybrid or full-on electric, we wondered if the fun was going to get lost in the process. Well, it certainly didn’t on the S60. So now, we were really excited to test the all-electric C40 Recharge. We’re pretty hopeful about the fun, but we also wondered in the world of EVs, does the C40 keep that special Volvo-ness that we’ve come to love? Let’s find out! Swedish Smurf The first thing you notice about …

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Road Test Review – 2024 Mazda CX-90 – Mazda Remixes The Flagship SUV And It’s The Best One Yet

The 2023 Mazda CX-9 embodied the best and the worst characteristics in a flagship three-row SUV offering. One the one hand it featured an impressive amount of luxury, a sporty shape, and a hearty amount of performance from its engine lineup. On the other hand, the CX-9 also suffered from terrible electronics, horrible blind spots, and a third row that could barely haul people. The CX-9 also infamously lost to the Nissan Pathfinder when we subjected it to our television hauling test. The Japanese automaker claims that it has finally addressed these items and more with the 2024 Mazda CX-90. …

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2023 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV SEL S-AWC review by Ben Lewis

Have you ever met someone, and new immediately that you were going to be great friends?  Well, that happens with cars, too. Last year we tested the then all-new 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander and loved it. The only thing missing – the popular PHEV (plug-in hybrid) model remained on the previous chassis. But now for 2023 you can get the PHEV model with all the goodies. So, is it still love at first sight? Let’s find out! Same Great Looks – Can you say I Fu Do Do? We were super happy to see that the PHEV has inherited the same …

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2023 Honda CR-V Sport Touring Hybrid review by Ben Lewis

A long time ago, if we said “name a Honda” odds were pretty good you’d say Civic or Accord. Of course, the crossover/SUV craze has meant that the nameplates most familiar are ones like the CR-V. (Although the Civic and Accord are pretty great vehicles). And the best-selling CR-V fights in one of the most competitive segments around, with such marquee idols as the RAV4, all-new Mazda CX-50, Kia Sportage, Hyundai Tucson and Nissan Rogue. To keep up, Honda knew it was time for an update. Enter the all-new 2023 Honda CR-V. Does the 6th generation CR-V keep its crown …

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2023 Lexus RX 500h F Sport Performance review by Ben Lewis

It’s comforting when there’s things you can rely on. Like the Lexus RX. You know it’s going to be a pleasantly styled SUV, with loads of luxury, quiet and refined. So, all of sudden they announce a serious performance-minded, hard-edged RX! What!!!! Well, actually, we have seen Lexus and parent company Toyota getting more sport serious, from the IS 500 to the new GR 86, so it’s not that outrageous. But can it live up to the promise? Let’s find out. Looks the Part The RX 500 makes a bold first impression – instantly identifiable as a Lexus, but a …

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2023 Kia Sportage Hybrid EX AWD review by Ben Lewis

As long as there’s been Kia in the US, it seems like there’s been a Sportage SUV. It started out small and rugged, and grew into a stylish, strong-performing model that we liked to call the Korean Cayenne. No small praise, giving Porsche props there. And now we have an all-new 5th generation Sportage, and while we might have expected a further development of the current model, Kia has instead unleashed the designers and engineers to create something completely different. How did they do? Let’s take a look! Opposites United No, that isn’t a name for a new English soccer …

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2022 Audi e-tron quattro Review by Ben Lewis

It’s been an Audi lovefest the past few weeks here at CRD. We’ve tested the S4, A4 and now we’re reviewing the fully electric e-tron SUV. While the other sedabs wooed us with their wonderful engines, we wondered can an EV powered Audi win our hearts as well? Let’s find out! Hello Handsome We’ve noticed a trend in the EV world, either you make it look crazy and unique, or you make it look much like the gas-powered choices, the BMW i4 comes to mind – making an easier transition for those coming from fossil fuel cars. We’d say that …

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2023 Maserati Grecale Makes Its Way To U.S. Dealerships, Debuts PrimaSerie Package And $64,995 Base Price

The 2023 Maserati Grecale is a soft reset for the brand as it makes its second attempt at establishing a foothold in the SUV segment. The bigger Levante was the spearhead entry in the utility segment but while the delightfully insane Trofeo model impressed us with its insane levels of performance. The Levante lineup as a whole has not been hitting the sales targets that Maserati laid out. The Grecale aims to bring some bite back into these plans, while also steering the brand into a new direction.   Grecale Is A Smaller & Crisper Package The exterior styling of …

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First VinFast VF 8 Models Reach U.S Shores, Boasts 180 Mile Driving Range

VinFast promised it would turn the EV segment upside down when it announced plans to bring the VF 8 and VF 9 SUVs to the U.S. market. The young upstart company appears to have succeeded in some of its early goals and recently announced that its first shipment of VF 8 models has arrived in the U.S.   VF 8 Serves As Spearhead, But Sacrifices Range When VinFast execs announced their plans last year, the company hinted that the VF 8 would have a range of 260 miles between charges. However, the first batch of SUVs appears to have sacrificed …

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2023 Kia Niro PHEV SX Touring Review by Ben Lewis

The Kia Niro has always been an interesting player. More of a tall hatchback than a true small SUV, we’ve found that its fun to drive nature and responsive performance made it one of the most enjoyable small hybrid vehicles. Well for 2023, we have an all-new 2nd generation Niro, so we’re wondering, is it a second helping of Kia goodness, or a sophomore slump? Let’s find out. Big on Bold Season 2 starts with a bold new look for our hero. Kia calls the new design philosophy “Opposites United” – yes, it does sound like a pro soccer team …

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2023 Mazda CX-5 2.5 S AWD Carbon Edition Review by Ben Lewis

There are certain brands that we’re always excited to test, and Mazda is one of them. Lately many of our test vehicles from the carmaker including the – CX-30, CX-50 – have had the powerful 2.5-liter, turbo engine. So many, that we kind of forgot about the nice, non-turbo engines that are in the more affordable models. So, we jumped at the chance test a Mazda CX-5 with the normally aspirated engine, and we were shocked! Stay tuned. All Gorgeous Well, no matter which CX-5 model you like, you’re going to get a work of art. Mazda talks about its …

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2023 Honda HR-V AWD EX-L Review by Ben Lewis

With the expensive price of gas, you might think that SUV/crossovers might be giving way back to small sedans, but nope – they’re as popular as ever. One thing that might be changing is the greater demand for the smaller models that are more fuel efficient. Count in models like the Hyundai Kona, Kia Seltos and Mazda CX-30. Honda already had a fine competitor in the class, the HR-V, but to keep things competitive, there’s an all-new 2023 model with major upgrades all around. So how does it stack up in this ultra-competitive segment? Let’s take a look. Bigger and …

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Road Test Review – 2023 Mazda CX-5 – Carryover Model Shares The Spotlight With CX-50, Can It Still Blur The Segment?

The 2023 Mazda CX-5 continues to be one of the strongest-selling models in the brand’s growing pool of SUV entries, thanks to its ability to blend style with segment-blurring luxury. However, it’s facing traditional competition from rivals and an internal threat from the recently launched Mazda CX-50. Can the 2023 Mazda CX-5 still make a name for itself in this hotly contested segment or has its age finally caught up with it?   CX-5 Styling Hides The Wrinkles Well While it’s no secret that the CX-5 is starting to age, you would be hard-pressed to find any obvious signs of …

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2023 Lexus GX 460 Black Line review by Ben Lewis

While there are a lot of SUVs out there, it’s a sad fact that most of them aren’t really capable off-road vehicles. Soft Roaders – more likely bound for a trip to the mall than the mountains. And yet, there are still buyers who want that rugged capability. And a few more that want a full load of luxury as well. Range Rover may be the most common choice, but we think the Lexus 460 has always filled that bill. And with some nice updates, it’s become even more desirable. So, strap on your mountain boots, and let’s go for …

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2022 Toyota RAV4 TRD Off-Road review by Ben Lewis

We’ve tested a variety of models of the new Toyota RAV4, and it’s shown to be a versatile platform starting as a handsome and practical small SUV, all the way up to a stormingly quick 302-horsepower RAV4 Prime, and many models in between. Since the new RAV was introduced, we’ve seen a huge increase in outdoorsy trim models from a bunch of manufacturers, including the Subaru Forester and Outback Wilderness models, and the Honda Passport TrailSport.  Some, like the Subies have an impressive amount of off-road updates, while others like the Honda are more show than go. So, we figured …

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Maserati’s F Tributo Models Pay Homage To First Woman In Formula 1, Will Be Ghibli and Levante Exclusive

Maserati may be focusing the bulk of its efforts on electrifying its growing pool of models, but the company is still taking time to pay homage to key moments in its history. Case in point is the new lineup of F Tributo models that are helping to highlight the legacy of the first female driver in Formula 1, Maria Teresa de Fillipis.   F Tributo Duo Will Be Ghibli and Levante Exclusive Fillipis is one of a small handful of female drivers that have competed in the largely male dominated sport and is from Maserati’s home country of Italy. Fillipis …

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2022 Hyundai Tucson N Line H-Trac review by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the new Toyota 4Runner Sport model, an interesting blend of upgraded looks, but without the heavy-duty off-road bits that come on models like TRD Pro. It’s a trend, like the Honda Passport Trailsport – adding some sporty style without going overboard on performance gear, and here’s another take on that same formula, the 2022 Hyundai Tucson N Line. We previously tested the Tucson Limited, and were very impressed, so let’s see if the N Line keeps those good vibrations! Buff and Tough On the outside, Hyundai takes what was already one of the best-looking small SUV’s and …

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2022 Toyota 4Runner TRD Sport Review by Ben Lewis

Is there any SUV more familiar than Toyota’s 4Runner? We’d say familiar and steadfast, too. Where other SUV’s have gone through the market swings, becoming more car like, swapping capability for comfort, living a soft life in the ‘burbs, the 4Runner has stayed true to form – a tough, capable, rugged, truck-based vehicle that’s proven to be nearly unbreakable over the years. But is this tough Toyota is behind the times? Well, a new-for-2022 TRD Sport model gives us an opportunity to get back in the saddle with one of our favorite rides. Handsome, Square-Jawed Looks On the outside, it …

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Jeep Eyes The EV Wars With 2023 Recon, Small EV Promises Wrangler Capability In Tidy Compact Package

Jeep’s 4xe day has begun, and the brand not only used the occasion to elaborate on its EV plans but also show the spearhead of this offensive with three all-new Jeep EVs that aim to shake the very foundation of Jeep to its core. While the Jeep Avenger will be a Europe-only offering, the off-road brand showed us one of two U.S.-bound models, the 2023 Jeep Recon.   Recon Provides Glimpse Into Trail Slaying Strategy The 2023 Recon was the surprise unveiling of 4xe day, and while it may look like an all-electric Wrangler replacement, Jeep assures us that it …

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2022 Lexus NX 450h+ Luxury Review by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the all-new Lexus NX 350 and we very impressed. OK, so we know it’s heavily based on the new Toyota RAV4, but that’s fine with us, the updated RAV4 was a major step forward for one of the best-selling small SUVs of all time. And our favorite RAV was the RAV4 Prime with over 300 horsepower and 0-60 in under 6 seconds. It’s one of the fastest vehicles in the Toyota fleet! So, while we loved the NX 350, we were really waiting for the NX 450h+ which would be using the same muscular running gear as …

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Road Test Review – 2022 Maserati Levante Trofeo – Ferrari Power In A Maserati Badged Designer Suit

A Maserati is a rare treat, an Italian-themed slice of perfection that’s supposed to show that you made it in the high-paced society that we all live in. That said, it’s no secret that the marque has had a turbulent history recently, especially in the decades before it ended up in the fold of the juggernaut now known as Stellantis. Maserati has greatly benefitted from this arraignment and even used it to help prepare its first-ever SUV model, the Levante. While lesser Levantes are known for coddling occupants in world-class comfort, the Trofeo model serves to satiate buyers looking for …

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Ford Adds 60’s Inspired Heritage Editions To Bronco, Bronco Sport For 2023,

The Ford Bronco and Bronco Sport have proven to be a popular duet of SUVs for buyers. Both models have seen strong sales and while the bigger Bronco had a rough launch, the smaller Sport picked up the slack and helped lay out the foundation for success. With Bronco Day 2022 upon us, Ford chose to celebrate the occasion by unveiling special Heritage Edition versions of the Bronco and the Bronco Sport.   Bronco Heritage Editions Exude 1960s Spirit At first glance, the two SUVs might seem to be trying to reignite the retro fad that once burned brightly in …

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2022 Honda Passport TrailSport Review by Ben Lewis

Let’s play a game. If we say name an outdoorsy off-road manufacturer, what would you say? Jeep? Land Rover? Toyota? How about Honda? Probably not. But that’s no fault of the vehicles, but one of perception. Honda has been making some tough, capable all-terrain vehicles for some time, but they haven’t been making a lot of noise about them. Well, that’s about to change with the all-new 2022 Honda Passport TrailSport. Ready to get some mud on your boots? Let’s go! Toughed-up Looks We were already fans of the current Passport, a big and comfy, capable 5-spassenger SUV. For 2022, …

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2023 Mazda CX-50 Meridian Edition Hits The Order Books, Highlights Broader Price Increase

The Mazda CX-50 is perhaps one of the most interesting SUV entries that we have seen in recent years. It’s a rugged trail runner but it still has enough sporty style and west coast substance to look good on any designers sketchpad. It’s driving manners certainly impressed us both in California as well as our home turf. However, the one flavor of CX-50 that has proven to be elusive is the Meridian Edition. This version promised to turn the volume up a notch in many regards and was promoted as an upgrade over lesser models. Mazda has ended it’s radio …

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2022 Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro Review: The King of Reliability

Last time Toyota did a major update to the 4Runner was in 2010. Despite the Tacoma getting a new engine in 2016, the 4Runner keeps the venerable 4.0-liter V6. There is a reason for this that we will cover later. Overview Outside the 2022 4Runner TRD Pro Rather than focus on the over a decade old design, let’s talk about the unique features of the TRD Pro. For starters the 2022 4Runner TRD Pro comes with all the features that are on the TRD Off-Road Trim. In addition, the TRD Pro adds a TRD roof rack up top, ¼” thick …

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2022 Acura MDX Type S Advance Review by Ben Lewis

Acura has been doing some great stuff lately. And one of the things that has really gotten our attention was the return of the Type S trim – Acura’s serious performance models for serious performance drivers. We recently tested the TLX Type S sedan and found it an impressive step up over the TLX A-Spec that we had lots of love for. Well, we’ve been in the 3-row MDX A-Spec SUV, so when Acura announced an MDX Type S, we jumped at the opportunity to test. Does Acura bring the same magic to their flagship SUV? Let’s take a look! …

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2023 Mazda CX-50 Turbo Premium Plus Review by Ben Lewis

An all-new Mazda model is always a point of celebration for us. Whether it’s the 2-passenger MX-5 sports car or the three-row CX-9 crossover, the brand always manages to make the vehicle stylish and great fun to drive. So, we sort of set the bar high for the all-new CX-50 crossover. Is Mazda up to the task? Let’s find out! The Outdoorsy One The first look at the CX-50 is interesting, because, well, it doesn’t look like other Mazdas. But not in a bad way. When the manufacturer decided to design it – and this is for the US – …

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2024 Chevrolet Blazer Adds Electrified Tech To Iconic Nameplate, Will Join Equinox EV

When Chevrolet announced that they would electrify the Blazer, we were curious to see how the brand would tackle this challenge head-on. Subsequent teaser images of the Blazer revealed that a very futuristic overhaul was in store but not much else about what lurked underneath the skin. That changes today with the unveiling of the 2024 Blazer EV. Blazer EV Reboots Sporty Intentions The ICE-powered Blazer was clearly inspired by the Chevrolet Camaro but this time around, the EV version goes off in a clearly different direction. The front fascia is bolder than it’s ICE counterpart and it comes adorned …

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2023 Honda CR-V Arrives Bigger And Better Than Ever, Sport Trim Goes Hybrid

The Honda CR-V has always been the proverbial bread and butter model for Honda, with the current generation being in service since 2016. You would be hard-pressed to remember just how different a globe it was back then, especially with the notion of a pandemic being a borderline fantasy. Alot has changed in those six years, but the CR-V’s need to innovate hasn’t, which is why Honda chose to finally unveil the 2023 Honda CR-V as it seeks to gain the attention of more younger buyers in this hotly contested segment.   CR-V No Longer The Butt Of Jokes In …

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2022 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 4WD Review by Ben Lewis

If we say Nissan Pathfinder, what do you think of? If you’ve been around for a long time, you might remember the original – a tough, truck-like vehicle (much like the original Toyota 4Runner) that won owners over with its rugged, go-anywhere ability and square-jawed looks. If you’re not of that vintage, you might have a less than rosy view of Nissan’s SUV. The most recent model when towards the family SUV, and while it was pleasant, it had some issues, and was generally viewed as somewhere between meh and OK. Well, there’s great news for Pathfinder fans, for 2022 …

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Road Test Review – 2022 Jaguar F-Pace S P340 AWD – This Cat’s Got Claws

The Jaguar F-Pace has always stood out when it comes to its ability to be a practical family hauler and moonlight as an enthusiast sleeper pick when you have the chance to go down twistier sections of tarmac. The F-Pace has proven to be a sales hit for Jaguar, and its success even inspired the company to release the smaller E-Pace. That said, does the 2022 F-Pace still have the chops to hang with the segment’s best, or are its recent round of updates not enough to keep it from falling behind the pack?   F-Pace’s Callum Penned Lines Still …

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2022 Subaru Ascent Onyx Review by Ben Lewis

You’ve read our rave reviews of the Subaru Outback. And our equally positive test of the Subaru Forester. You get all fizzy over the Subie driving experience. Heck, you even love their commercials with the dogs. (We love those too). Except you need more room. Like 3 rows of seats room. What to do? Well, you could drive some other brand and be the person in the SUV with the long face, or you can go for Subaru Ascent with three rows of Subaru goodness. But is a 3-row Sube still a Sube? Let’s find out. Big, but definitely Subaru …

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Road Test Review – 2022 Genesis GV70 Sport Prestige, Filling Out Genesis’s Luxury Utility Footprint

When we had our chance to drive the Genesis GV80 awhile back, it appeared to signal a shift in Genesis’s plans for the luxury market, with the Korean upstart focusing more on utilities and crossovers after initially starting its launch with two sedan models. The GV80 is still a very good luxury SUV, but Genesis knows that it has to gradually move towards smaller segments and embraces a sportier lifestyle in order to expand its sales footprint. The 2022 GV70 is a step towards this goal, but is it the perfect complement to the GV80?   Sharper GV70 Styling Points …

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2022 Kia Sorento PHEV SX-Prestige AWD review by Ben Lewis

Like we’ve noted before, the Kia Sorento has one big problem – it lives in the shadow of its big brother the Telluride. Ok, the Telly does deserve the acclaim it’s a great 3-row SUV that looks, goes and performs just how you’d want a big SUV to. But the Sorento has a lot going for it, too. In fact, while it’s smaller, it still serves up 3 rows of seats, and we’d argue it’s a more advanced vehicle, first being offered in a Hybrid model, and now with a new for ’22 PHEV plug-in hybrid variant. And with the …

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2021 Land Rover Defender 90 First Edition Review by Ben Lewis

So, we road test a lot of different vehicles. And some of them are very expensive, status-y models, and it’s no surprise that you get an interesting range of responses. Often times with the pricey ones, you get pushback, the anti-snobbism. So, it’s interesting when you have a vehicle that’s a luxury brand, loaded with status, yet everyone seems to love it. Case in point – our 2021 Land Rover Defender 90. It’s a charmer. Lovable Looks Well, the first thing that bowls people over is the Defender’s design. Our 2-door 90 model looks like a giant Tonka Toy – …

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2022 Lexus NX 350 F SPORT Handling AWD review by Ben Lewis

We’re always happy to test a new Lexus – but a little like Forrest Gump’s box of chocolates, you never know what you’re going to get. Sometimes they are just lovely, refined vehicles that you’d be happy for your grandparents to toddle around town in. But lately, Toyota’s luxury division has been messing with us – throwing some Jalapeno poppers into our box of creamy nougats. The IS 350 and IS 500 are both jaw-droppers – thrilling to drive, stunning to look at, proof that Lexus is ready to take on the world’s best and give them a good stomping. …

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Ford Details 2023 Bronco Raptor’s Digital Cluster, Confirms Drive Mode Animations

The 2023 Ford Bronco Raptor received alot of buzz for injecting a massive amount of fun and capability into the Bronco’s already impressive foundation. But amid all the noise generated by its bigger engine and screengrabs of it jumping the dunes, not too much attention was given to the Raptor model’s digital instrument cluster. Turns out, there’s alot more going on here than we realized, and Ford detailed some of the digital details in a release earlier today.   A New View On Bronco Performance At first glance, the images in the gallery below seem to follow the same typical …

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2022 Toyota Corolla Cross review by Ben Lewis

This may come as no surprise to you, but the best-selling nameplate in history is Corolla. Yep, Toyota has been making them for over 50 years, and selling them like crazy the whole time. So, with the ever-continuing growth of small SUVs, it seems only natural that the carmaker would combine an SUV with the Corolla name. Welcome to the 2022 Toyota Corolla Cross! Stylish but mainstream Two things strike you about the Corolla Cross. First of all, while it is stylish, there is nothing that screams Toyota or Corolla about it. We guess Corolla buyers aren’t the kind to …

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Road Test Review – 2021 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 – Insanity Unleashed

Jeep has had a very complicated relationship when it comes to giving its iconic Wrangler a V8 engine. While aftermarket companies have done it for years, Jeep resisted the urge of giving its Wrangler an injection of V8-powered fun. However, the emergence of the Ford Bronco has at long last finally forced Stellantis’s hand, and the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 is the long-awaited fruit of this dream. But is it a case of you should never meet your heroes? Or is it the perfect definition of insanity?   A Familiar Wrapper Hides The Essentials With all the magic happening under …

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Road Test Review – 2022 Grand Cherokee Two Row Laredo – A Value Packed Offering For Families

The 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee is aiming to reshape the way that many Jeep buyers experience and embrace the SUV. While the spotlight is shining brightly on higher trim models like the Limited and Summit as well as the green-minded 4xe model, it can be easy to forget that the bulk of sales are focused on mainstream trims like the Laredo model which serve as value-focused gateways into the Grand Cherokee family. We wanted to find out what SUV buyers will get for their money and whether the Laredo is still the go-to entry-focused model.   Laredo Still Embodies Jeep …

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2023 Lotus Eletre Introduces Lotus To The SUV And Electrification

Lotus has had a rollercoaster history during its long and iconic history. It has experienced periods of prosperity but also periods of struggle and challenges. Lotus is looking to put all of those things in the rearview mirror and has revealed the next chapter of its history, the all-new Lotus Eletre, which brings the brand to the SUV segment for the first time and is also the first relatively mass production Lotus EV offering to go on sale.   Eletre Debuts New Design Language For Lotus The exterior styling of the Eletre may seem like a massive assortment of Evija …

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2022 Mazda CX-9 Carbon Edition Review by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the Toyota Sienna minivan, and found the “Swagger Wagon” to still be in effect, a great vehicle. But for many, the word minivan has too many negative connotations. And that’s why we’ve seen a huge upsurge of three-row SUV’s, from the large and princely Kia Telluride and Hyundai Pallisade, to smaller models, where that 3rd row is pretty much for occasional use. And one of our favorites of the occasional 3rd row SUVs is the Mazda CX-9. It may give you bumped knees in row #3, but it gives you back so much more! Let’s take a …

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Mazda CX-60 Debuts With PHEV Performance, New Rear Wheel Drive Platform

It wasn’t too long ago that Mazda teased the CX-60 SUV which is the next strategic piece in the company’s push towards enhancing its presence in the utility vehicle market. With the smaller CX-50 poised to make a splash in the U.S., the CX-60 is looking to achieve the same feat across the pond in European markets.   New CX-60 Platform Embraces Rear Wheel Drive The CX-60 is a bigger SUV offering and that extra size means a new platform with the CX-60 being the first of these new CX models to use an all-new rear-wheel-drive-focused platform. This platform has …

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