2020 BMW M235i xDrive Gran Coupe by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the MINI Clubman and remarked that there’s a lot of BMW under the skin. Well, in many ways, you could say the new BMW 2-series Gran Coupe has a fair amount of MINI under the skin – and just like the Clubby, it’s a good thing. Another way to think of the M235i Gran Coupe is the sedan version of the monster X2 M35i we tested – they share a lot of the same running gear – but going from SAV/SUV/Crossover to Sedan/Gran Coupe (stop with all the different names, please!) creates a very different beast. But …

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2020 Subaru Legacy Sport Review – By Ben Lewis

We’ve always liked Subaru. They’re the perfect example of a company zigging while others zagged. Steadfast in their belief in all-wheel-drive (except for the BR-Z sports car), Subies gained a foothold in areas with lots of snow or slop and became beloved for their mountain-goat-like abilities. The brand has been smart, spreading the gospel of AWD, the horizontally-opposed “Boxer” engine, and has created a name with true identity; green, caring, safe. Subaru isn’t just for the snow-belt anymore. They use the word Love a lot in their ads. All good. Of course, the other brands aren’t just going to sit …

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2020 Hyundai Sonata Limited by Ben Lewis

Well, we are always excited to hear about a new Hyundai Sonata. It seems that the automaker always tries to do something special, and their flagship sedan also seems to get some hand-me-down (we should all be so lucky!) technology from its wealthy sibling Genesis. And if you saw the Superbowl commercial, it’s bringing some amazing tech to the segment as well. So, is this the sedan to beat Camry and Accord at their own game? We’ll see! Sonata exterior – Distinctive Styling Ok, you see the word “distinctive” and you wonder – and well you should. At first glance …

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Road Test Review – 2020 Buick Enclave Avenir – By Carl Malek

Buick is in a very interesting state of flux. Once known for having a vibrant car lineup, the brand is in the middle of a rapid transformation into a CUV and SUV focused brand. While new entries like the Encore GX and the refreshed Envision are helping Buick explore new niches in the utility segment, ultimately, the weight of the brand’s sales success rests with the Buick Enclave. This full-size hauler has the size and the luxury needed to be the perfect family truckster, with the model being a sales force for Buick since it first made its appearance back …

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2020 Toyota GR Supra 3.0 Premium by Ben Lewis

It’s hard to remember a new Toyota vehicle that’s had this much attention around it. Yes, the new RAV4 was a big deal, and the new Camry was also important. But neither of them had car guys (and gals) drooling, dreaming, and scouring social media for info like the new Supra. And the Supra is a very important car for the brand. As Toyota has made huge efforts to make each new vehicle more exciting and better performing, they needed a halo vehicle to show what the brand is really made of. Enter one of the most popular performance cars …

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Road Test Review – 2020 Mini Cooper S Clubman – By Carl Malek [Video]

The 2020 Mini Cooper S Clubman is the answer to a very interesting question. What would happen if you take a Mini Cooper hatchback, and try to apply some of its quirky charm and appeal to a segment blurring utility focused model? The end result is the Clubman which tries to add more versatility and cargo hauling ability into its distinctly British flanks. But while the Clubman Panel Van a few years ago was a short lived and ultimately flawed experiment, the standard Clubman has managed to gather a sizable following of loyalists over the years. We were eager to …

Read more Road Test Review – 2020 Mini Cooper S Clubman – By Carl Malek [Video]

Lotus Evija’s Aero Features Highlighted In New Video, Features Chief Aerodynamicist [Video]

The Lotus Evija hypercar brings a number of firsts to Lotus. Not only is it the first ever offering in this segment by Lotus, but it is also the first fully EV to be ever produced by the company. The 2,000 horsepower generated by its electric drive train aim to make the Evija one of the quickest hyper entries ever produced, but ultimately the car’s futuristic fighter jet-esque styling is what draws stares at the end of the day. But amid the futuristic undertones, there is actually an impressive degree of functional purpose backed into the design, with Lotus choosing …

Read more Lotus Evija’s Aero Features Highlighted In New Video, Features Chief Aerodynamicist [Video]

First Drive Review – 2020 BMW 840i – By Carl Malek [Video]

When one asks what makes a proper flagship coupe? Some will say that you must have eye watering style to help your offering stand out from the rest of the pack. Still, others will say performance and technology rule the day. Regardless of which principle is true, making sure all the stars align to achieve this nirvana is very difficult even for a German luxury car maker like BMW. When the world last saw the 8-Series coupe, it was back in 1990 when the first 8 Series rolled off the assembly line. Designed to be the ultimate 90’s luxury machine, …

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2021 Kia Seltos S FWD by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the Hyundai Kona, and found it to be a stylish, sporty and well-equipped runabout. So, it’s easy to think that the all-new 2021 Kia Seltos, which shares most of the powertrain is its brother from another mother, but that’s not the case – it’s a completely different vehicle with a different purpose. Poised between Kia’s funky Soul and more traditional Sportage, it’s a small, rugged adventurer ready to tackle tough conditions. Kia Seltos Exterior – Bold and Eye Catching Kia likes to say that the Seltos has the same design theme as the big, bold Telluride SUV. …

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Road Test Review – 2020 Volvo S90 R-Design – By Carl Malek

In the world of high end luxury cars, marques such as BMW, Mercedes Benz, Audi and more can usually be found flooding the parking lots of shopping malls, bustling downtowns, and those elegant high end restaurants. This is due to how well built they are, as well as the love affair that many loyalists have with their elegant charms, state of the art technology, and luxury trappings. As a result, they present a formidable bar for others to surpass. One such contender looking to do this is Volvo, which has recently mounted a renewed effort at adding ample amounts of …

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Road Test Review – 2020 GMC Sierra 2500 HD AT4 – By Carl Malek

It’s hard to deny the love affair that buyers have developed for rugged light duty trucks like the dune slaying Ford Raptor, the Ram Rebel 1500, as well as the Chevrolet Silverado Trailboss. With these models becoming key cogs for their respective brands in terms of sales, it only seems natural to extend this magic to their heavy duty counterparts. The Ram Power Wagon, The Ford Super Duty Tremor, and the Nissan Titan XD Pro 4-X were the early shots into this endeavor and naturally GMC had to issue a rebuttal of their own with the Sierra HD AT4. But …

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2020 Kia Forte GT by Ben Lewis

Many have said that the small car is on the way out. That small crossovers like the Hyundai Kona or tall hatchbacks like the Mazda CX30 will pushing them out. And the numbers don’t lie, SUV crossovers are king. (outside of full-size pickup trucks). But the sedan isn’t ready to throw in the towel yet. In fact, struggling to stay relevant has brought some of the best 4-doors to market that we’ve seen in a long time. The new Toyota Camry is excellent and fun. The Honda Accord, too. Heck they even put a turbo motor in the Mazda 6. …

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Road Test Review – 2020 Lexus GX 460 Luxury – By Carl Malek

The landscape has certainly changed in the SUV landscape over the past 30 years. Once known for being rugged functional workhorses that preferred to let their capability and off-road credentials do the talking, the priorities have flipped completely on their heads for buyers with comfort and technology taking center stage. But amid standout entries like the Lincoln Aviator, Acura MDX, and the Cadillac XT6, there are still some old school centric entries remaining that aim to win buyers over with a taste of what SUVs used to be defined by. One of these is the Lexus GX 460 which is …

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Road Test Review – 2019 Hyundai Nexo Blue – By Carl Malek

Hyundai is on a roll when it comes to hydrogen. A key player in a green segment that is still attached to the hip of EV and PHEV vehicles. Hyundai still sees tremendous potential in hydrogen as a viable alternative fuel source. The company has had a long running program in California, and even recently unveiled a hydrogen powered semi truck concept. But, the Korean car giant still needed a viable platform to test its hydrogen technology, and it has unleashed the latest chapter in its green exploits, the 2019 Hyundai Nexo, but is the Nexo the next key chapter …

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Road Test Review – 2019 Mercedes-Benz G63 AMG – By Carl Malek

With the SUV and CUV segments adding so many new models into their respective ranks, it can be easy to forget that there are a few iconic nameplates sitting at various points in the segment. If your a rapper, celebrity, third world leader, or even the pope, few entries can match the extensive rap sheet wielded by the Mercedes G-Class. First conceived in 1972 at the suggestion of the King of Iran, the G-Class initially started life as a military vehicle, with the Argentinian army interestingly being the first power to use it in 1981. The first civilian version appeared …

Read more Road Test Review – 2019 Mercedes-Benz G63 AMG – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2019 Chevrolet Silverado LT Double Cab Four Cylinder – By Carl Malek

Not too long ago, the very thought of a four cylinder full sized pickup truck was seen as a pure fantasy. Back then, a V6 was the lowest anyone could go both in cylinders, as well as price. But times are changing, and with Ford dropping a bomb on the segment by unleashing the turbocharged 2.7 liter EcoBoost V6 on the world, Chevrolet knew that it had to do something completely out of the box to help the Silverado stay relevant in the full-size pickup truck segment. With Ford turbocharging the V6, the bowtie brigade decided to go in an …

Read more Road Test Review – 2019 Chevrolet Silverado LT Double Cab Four Cylinder – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2019 Polaris Slingshot SL – By Carl Malek [Videos]

Ever had a sense of adventure? That feeling where you want to go off and try something radically new? That’s how we felt when it came to the Polaris Slingshot. This author has always been very interested in the world of three wheeled cycle cars, but the Slingshot remained an elusive quarry. We got a chance to get a taste of this special Polaris back in February, but the indoor setting and the low speeds that came with it did not give us a good opprotunity to formally get to experience all the things that the Slingshot brings to the …

Read more Road Test Review – 2019 Polaris Slingshot SL – By Carl Malek [Videos]

Finding Its Inner Potential, 2020 Shelby Mustang GT350R Brings New Moves To Its Track Slaying Mission

When we last met the Shelby GT350 Mustang, it was in its base form, and while the GT350 certainly proved to be a very track ready offering, the feeling that it had more lurking underneath its imposing bodywork was hard to ignore. The intoxicating snarl of its 5.2 liter 526 horsepower V8 certainly does its best to distract you from thinking such things, but despite its attempts at luring you into its charms, the feeling of more still permeates the overall driving experience. Ford engineers have felt the same way too, and have unleashed a new iteration of the Shelby …

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2020 Hyundai Palisade Limited AWD – First Drive Review Video + Mega Gallery

Lots of Palisade love this summer! You can really tell how seriously Hyundai is taking this full-size SUV launch by the media events scheduled on its behalf. Instead of one major media drive with an ultra exclusive invite list, Hyundai did a Palisade road show and had at least five of them across the country.  Presentations from the product teams and great roads to try out this three-row biggie’s capabilities. The one we attended was in Asheville North Carolina, a short jump inland from CRD HQ in Charleston, SC.  But years in the ‘lowcountry’ made me forget all about hills …

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First Drive Review – 2019 Rolls Royce Dawn Black Badge – By Carl Malek

When we last met Rolls Royce’s Black Badge lineup, it was at the 2018 MAMA Spring Rally where we had the chance to go for a brief spin in the Wraith Black Badge. The Wraith’s rendition was supposed to appeal to a younger audience, and give the ultra bespoke coupe a small but welcome pinch of performance engineering to go with its world class levels of luxury and opulence. With the Dawn convertible proving to be an equally popular choice for the small sector of Rolls Royce’s customer base that want to add droptop cruising to the list of things …

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First Drive Review – 2019 Rolls Royce Cullinan – By Carl Malek

It’s hard to ignore the resurgence of SUVS both in sales, as well as in  overall relevance in the minds of a new generation of buyers. Once considered a crippled segment following the Great Recession, SUV growth and demand has rapidly surged ahead in recent years. This has resulted in a ripple effect that has caused many automakers to rapidly revamp, and in some cases, rethink their long term sales strategies. These include high end marques once known for car focused lineups, with Bentley, Maserati, and Lamborghini all joining the fray. But at last, this ripple effect has reached arguably …

Read more First Drive Review – 2019 Rolls Royce Cullinan – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2019 Hyundai Elantra Sport M/T – By Carl Malek

The battle in the compact sport sedan segment is still heating up despite the rapid ascent of compact crossovers, and the slow introduction of their equally spicy performance variants. While the Honda Civic Si, Volkswagen GLI, and the Subaru WRX have become the established players when it comes to delivering bargain focused performance to selective enthusiasts. An alternative choice that has always been considered the outsider looking in is the venerable Elantra Sport. Hyundai has recently been kickstarting its attempts at being a relevant player in this shrinking but still viable segment. This is thanks mainly to the Veloster and …

Read more Road Test Review – 2019 Hyundai Elantra Sport M/T – By Carl Malek

First Drive Review – 2017 Ford GT – By Carl Malek

When Ford first revealed the 2017 Ford GT at the North American International Auto Show, it was arguably one of the best kept secrets at the show that year. It was also the best kept secret at Ford, with only a scant few knowing of its meager origins until the very end of its development cycle. Since then, the GT has been a very potent marketing tool for the company, and it has proven to be a very compelling piece of eye candy for millions of enthusiasts around the world. We first had our taste of GT infused bliss when …

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Road Test Review – 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback XSE 6-Speed Manual – By Carl Malek

When it comes to the venerable Toyota Corolla, the iconic compact sedan has developed a very loyal following during its several decade production run, and it has managed to even block the challenge to its sales supremacy that has been cast into stone by a growing field of CUV competitors. But while the Corolla has managed to check all the other boxes that car buyers think in their minds when they purchase one, the lone item that has been missing in recent years is excitement. So when Toyota revealed that it planned to release a five-door version of its econobox, …

Read more Road Test Review – 2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback XSE 6-Speed Manual – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2019 Lexus UX200 F Sport – By Carl Malek

Lexus like other automakers, had a bit of a conundrum when it came to the task of luring in young millennials to its model lineup. How do you create something that comes jam packed with technology, style, and sophistication but in the compact dimensions that are needed for a urban commuter? While the Lexus RX is still a venerable nameplate (the bewildering RX350L excluded.) Its bigger size does not bode well for buyers in urban environments, and the Lexus NX can be a bit too extreme for other buyers. Lexus thinks it has finally hit the sweet spot with the …

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Road Test Review – 2019 Lincoln Nautilus Black Label – By Carl Malek

We like exploration, the sense of embarking on an adventure and discovering new things. It turns out, the folks at Lincoln also like the spirit of adventure too, especially with their recent blitz towards adding more exploration focused motifs into their models. When we last checked in on Lincoln, we checked out the biggest offering in their lineup, the revamped 2018 Navigator. The Navigator aimed to re-establish Lincoln’s dominance in the full-size luxury SUV segment, and we put that to the test by embarking on a road trip that took us throughout northern and western Michigan. However, while the Navigator …

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Road Test Review – 2019 Mopar Ram 1500 Big Horn – By Carl Malek [Video]

With all the diverse talents that the 2019 Ram 1500 brings to the table, it’s no surprise to hear that sales as well as the 1500’s broader reputation in the segment are on the upswing. Once considered the perennial third place offering behind Ford and GM, FCA’s plucky pickup entry has completely shifted the status quo, and is clawing its way towards usurping the Ford F-150 from its throne on top of the pickup truck sales charts. But a key and often lesser known story is how important the vehicle accessory market has been in the Ram’s ongoing success story. …

Read more Road Test Review – 2019 Mopar Ram 1500 Big Horn – By Carl Malek [Video]

Road Test Review – 2019 Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack Widebody – By Carl Malek

When it comes to reliving your youth, there are very few vehicles that are able to do it so well like the Dodge Challenger. While it’s underpinnings are based on a Mercedes platform that was first given to Dodge during the shotgun marriage that was known as the Daimler-Chrysler era, that particular factoid has not stopped the burly two door from being an ongoing success for the brand. This is partially due to the sheer flexibility that exists in the LY platform itself, with Dodge engineers being able to seamlessly create numerous iterations of the Challenger over the years (including …

Read more Road Test Review – 2019 Dodge Challenger R/T Scat Pack Widebody – By Carl Malek

First Drive Review – 2019 Cadillac XT4 Premium Luxury – By Carl Malek

It’s no secret that Cadillac is very late to the compact luxury crossover party. While the XT5 was a humble attempt at giving Cadillac a fighting chance in the broader luxury segment, it could do little to hide the fact that a very noticeable void existed between it and some of the smaller luxury CUVs that are pulling in younger buyers in droves, especially those that want utility, but in a smaller tidy package that still is jam packed with luxury. The 2019 Cadillac XT4 aims to make up for lost time, and is Cadillac’s first formal foray into this …

Read more First Drive Review – 2019 Cadillac XT4 Premium Luxury – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2019 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 – By Carl Malek

The mid-size pickup truck market is booming, but that has always not been the case. For a number of years, the segment was a very stagnant sector of the broader pickup truck market, with the Toyota Tacoma being the benchmark offering for buyers that wanted a pickup, but did not want the bulk and bigger size that often comes with a full size offering. Chevrolet is no stranger to this segment, but the company has not always had the best of luck in its prior attempts at toppling the Tacoma. The 1980’s and 1990’s were dominated by the crude but …

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Road Test Review – 2019 Land Rover Discovery HSE Luxury – By Carl Malek [Video]

When it comes to bringing the pinnacle of off-road capability to affluent adventurers, few can beat the bar that has been set by Land Rover. The iconic British luxury SUV brand has always served as one of the benchmarks that many automakers look up to when they craft an off-road focused vehicle. In addition, key models have also played a big role in the company’s history over the years. A prominent player is the Land Rover Discovery which has established itself by offering lucky buyers the ability to blaze even the toughest of trails but still have enough size to …

Read more Road Test Review – 2019 Land Rover Discovery HSE Luxury – By Carl Malek [Video]

Track Test Review – 2019 Acura NSX – By Carl Malek

When the Acura NSX originally made its debut back in 2016, Acura was keen on reestablishing itself as a technological leader, while also breathing new life into arguably one of its most iconic nameplates. The reborn NSX proved to be a spirited offering, and smashed any doubts that were cast on it with its impressive performance numbers, smooth hybrid technology, and being a futuristic shot of adrenaline for buyers looking for something different from the usual Porsche and even Ferrari powered tonics that were out in the marketplace at the time. But like all good things, even the NSX can …

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Road Test Review – 2018 Lexus RX350L – By Carl Malek

A key adage that applies in the automotive industry is the classic saying “Build it and they will come.” Indeed, this logic has resulted in some truly impressive models such as the Ford Mustang, Chevrolet Corvette, as well as tamer fare like the Toyota RAV4. However, it has also resulted in the appearance of a fair share of odds ball offerings in the past including the Nissan Murano convertible. But with crossover mania in full swing, this timeless saying has new meaning, especially with how white hot the sales race is in the all important luxury crossover segment. Lexus is …

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Road Test Review – 2019 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro – By Carl Malek

When it comes to off-road vehicles, few automakers have nearly the same level of clout that Toyota has. While Jeep has Rubicon, Ford Raptor, and Chevrolet ZR2, Toyota is the only automaker to offer a full lineup of off-road vehicles under the TRD Pro moniker. While the Tacoma and 4-Runner TRD Pro variants are often seen as the de-facto ambassadors of the brand, there are other TRD Pro models behind the scenes that do their best to bring a distinctive driving experience to buyers. One of these is the vehicle featured here, the 2019 Toyota Tundra TRD Pro. With its …

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Road Test Review – 2019 Mazda CX-5 Signature AWD – By Carl Malek

It’s no secret that Mazda’s CX-5 has emerged as a very key player for the Japanese car maker for the past several years. Once known for having a very car focused lineup over 10 years ago, Mazda has been very quick to embrace the recent shift towards CUV and SUV entries, with the CX-3 and the CX-9 being just two examples of how the Hiroshima based company has responded to this abrupt shift in buyer demand. However, it is ultimately the CX-5 that has emerged as the key cog in Mazda’s plans to sharpen up its position in the utility …

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First Drive – 2019 Polaris Slingshot SLR – By Carl Malek

When it comes to 3-wheel cycle cars (aka “autocycles,”) these special vehicles strike a welcome and particular chord in the heart of this author. For those that aren’t familiar with this type of vehicle, it is essentially the best of both worlds between a motorcycle and a car, with each one trying to do something different depending on how much car or motorcycle DNA is in it. Autocycles were invented before traditional four wheeled cars, and for a time were a sales phenomenon, especially in Europe. The Morgan 3-Wheeler is arguably the most iconic and historic of these particular vehicles, …

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2019 Chevrolet Blazer RS

2019 Chevrolet Blazer RS – First Drive Gallery

The new Blazer is easily the best-looking SUV to be launched in recent years.  Just because we are not on the charmed list for the US media launch does not mean we can’t celebrate a sexy design with a full photo gallery! And like most GM cars and crossovers in the last year — that all drive with exactly the same level of non-feel and non-fun — the Blazer is likely to be a deep snooze behind the wheel.  Until you get to the top motor, which also skyrockets the price into the $40s.  Tough call. The LT and Premier trims …

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Road Test Review – 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV – By Carl Malek

When we last met the Mitsubishi Outlander, it was in its base 2.4 liter form and it proved to be a very reliable steed, with the one we had impressing us with its Prius like fuel economy on a summer road trip from our Metro Detroit office to Wisconsin for a press association event. But what if your an SUV buyer who thinks even this insane display of fuel economy isn’t enough for your needs? Mitsubishi has you covered with the all new Outlander PHEV. But does it retain some of the subtle charms that allowed its four cylinder counterpart …

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2019 Jeep Cherokee Limited 4×4 – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

It’s amazing what legendary heritage can do for your ride. We had some rain this last week – actual, pouring rain in SoCal! – that created floods, mudslides, and nasty driving conditions. But we weren’t worried in the least. We were driving a 2019 Jeep Cherokee. Yes, there are probably lots of capable foul-weather,crappy-condition vehicles, but when the going gets tough, it’s reassuring to be behind the brand that’s always meant “I’ll get you there”. And when you advertise that you’re “The Most Capable SUV” in your segment, you should have the goods to back it up. A Grander Cherokee …

Read more 2019 Jeep Cherokee Limited 4×4 – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Road Test Review – 2018 Lincoln Navigator Black Label – By Carl Malek

When Lincoln revamped the Navigator full-sized SUV for 2018, they had a lot of ground to make up. Once an innovator in the full size luxury SUV segment when it first made its debut in 1998, the big Lincoln generated a lot of attention, and even inspired Cadillac to make its own entry, the Cadillac Escalade. However, the Navigators that followed failed to maintain this initial momentum, with the situation growing increasingly dire in 2015 when the refreshed third generation Navigator appeared. Lacking the precision and attention to detail that had become a staple of the fore-mentioned Escalade, that iteration …

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First Drive Review – 2018 Hyundai Kona EV Ultimate – By Carl Malek

With the recent pummeling that much of the tech market has endured on Wall Street in recent months, it’s comforting to know that things are still going strong in the electric vehicle segment. Once regarded as mere science experiments over 20 years ago, the EV has rapidly emerged as a leading force in the broader automotive marketplace. This is mainly due to the emergence of Tesla, but other automakers have followed suit, and have developed EV entries of their own to try and follow Tesla’s rapid rise to success in this arena. Hyundai’s Kona EV aims to be the latest …

Read more First Drive Review – 2018 Hyundai Kona EV Ultimate – By Carl Malek

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Road Test Review – 2018 Chevrolet Camaro SS 1LE 6MT – By Carl Malek

With the 2019 Chevrolet Camaro currently rolling into showrooms, the 1LE package is expected to play a much more promient role in Chevrolet’s long term sales plans. From the beefy V8 powered 1LE, to the introduction of the all new four cylinder 1LE, track ready performance has never been so readily accessible. But is the 1LE in its basic formula a solid all rounder for eager enthusiasts?

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2018 Audi A4 2.0T Quattro Manual – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Classic. What makes a car a classic? Often times, it takes years, or even decades to bestow a title like that. Or an ad on Craigslist for some clapped-out conveyance you should never consider buying. Let’s ignore the latter, and concentrate on the former. And we’re here to tell you that the 2018 Audi A4 is a classic. Classical Elegance Even though the A4 was all-new last year, you might not have noticed. Audi is a founding member of the Evolution, not Revolution design club. And besides, the previous model was pretty sweet. The new model looks a little crisper, …

Read more 2018 Audi A4 2.0T Quattro Manual – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2018 Ford Mustang GT 5.0 6MT Performance Pack – Road Test Review w/ Video

The new Mustang GT had a high bar to live up to when it spent a week here.  Why?  We fell absolutely head over heels for the Shelby GT350 last year. The GT350 felt like the 911 GT3 of muscle-cars — totally alive in your hands and violently fast at all times. The GT350 felt like a huge leap into the future of sports-cars. Luckily, when Ford was doing the revamp of the regular Mustang for 2018, their benchmark was none other than our GT350. The changes are visual of course but are much more technical and engineering-driven under the …

Read more 2018 Ford Mustang GT 5.0 6MT Performance Pack – Road Test Review w/ Video

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 …

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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 …

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

Road Test Review – 2018 Ford Mustang GT Performance Package 2 – By Carl Malek [Video]

The Rivalry, no we’re not talking about the annual Michigan vs Michigan State football game (a semi-official holiday here in the Metro Detroit office.) Rather, it’s the equally legendary rivalry between the Ford Mustang and the Chevrolet Camaro. Both of these pony cars have been slugging it out with each other since the 1960s, with the duo constantly trying to outdo each other in style, performance and innovation. Recently, we had the opportunity to explore both sides of this rivalry with the Chevrolet Camaro SS 1LE (review) and the subject of our attention this week, the 2018 Ford Mustang GT …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Ford Mustang GT Performance Package 2 – By Carl Malek [Video]

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2019 Lexus ES350 – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

The Lexus ES has always been a nice car. It was one of two models offered by Toyota’s luxury division when it launched in 1990. The LS400 was an all-new technological tour de force that took on Europe – and America’s – finest, and showed that the Japanese could compete and win on the world stage. And then there was the ES. Basically, a Camry with sporty C-pillar that was sold in other markets, Lexus put a heavy ladle of luxury on it, but compared to the LS, it was kind of lukewarm. In many ways, that has remained the …

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Road Test Review – 2018 Audi TT-RS – By Carl Malek

It’s not too often that we get the rare and unique opportunity to experience an RS badged Audi. Serving as the penultimate performance model for the bulk of the Audi lineup (R8 excluded,) these special models aim to bring even higher levels of performance, sophistication, and technology to the lucky clientele that are able to add one of these models to their dream garage. One of these offerings is the 2018 Audi TT-RS which brings the RS formula to the brand’s venerable two seat sports coupe. But can this latest chapter of TT-RS finally bring the cohesion and full spectrum …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Audi TT-RS – By Carl Malek

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Road Test Review – 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe Ultimate (AWD)

Hyundai is in a state of change these days. The Korean car company once known for having a near exclusive lineup of car entries is in the middle of rapidly transforming its utility vehicle lineup. Things got off to a great start with the Hyundai Kona CUV, which is proving to be a successful entry for Hyundai in a rapidly growing chunk of the CUV market. Now the company is setting its sights on bigger rivals with the 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe, but can this heavily revised Santa Fe repeat the Kona’s quick climb to stardom?  Or is it still …

Read more Road Test Review – 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe Ultimate (AWD)

Road Test Review – 2018 Jaguar XF Sportbrake S AWD – By Carl Malek

When the second generation XF sedan made its debut back in 2016, it brought a more refined suit of clothes to the big cat, as well as a duet of delightfully pleasurable all new four cylinder engines to the mix. Combined with a redone interior, Jaguar hoped that the XF would be able to claw its way to the top of the luxury sport sedan segment once and for all. However, the XF ended up being a tiny drop in a very big ocean dominated by entries from Germany and Asia, and thus, its impact was decidedly less noticeable. Jaguar …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Jaguar XF Sportbrake S AWD – By Carl Malek

2019 VW Passat GT V6 – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

It seems like the de-facto performance engine for reasonably priced cars these days is the 2.0-liter, turbo, 4-cylinder. From Audi A4, BMW 3, to Honda Accord and Kia Optima, the moderately-sized, turbo motor strikes as the perfect combination of power and economy. But what about 6-cylinders? For a long time the 6 was the engine, that sweet spot between big muscular V8’s and wheezy fours. Now, it’s a premium item – out of the reach of most buyers – especially if you want that engine wrapped in some sexy European sheet metal. VW to the rescue Yes, the brand that …

Read more 2019 VW Passat GT V6 – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

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 …

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

2019 Kia Optima SX Turbo – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Time flies. The last Kia Optima Turbo we tested was a 2016 model, and here we are behind the wheel of a 2019. What’s changed? Well for the Optima, it’s been constantly refined – 2017 saw a plug-in hybrid model added, 2018 saw some upgraded connectivity, and now for 2019, a host of safety equipment is standard across the range. There’s also a freshened face and rear, and the UVO infotainment system gets an upgrade. All good, admirable things for the car that in 2016, we called the most affordable Audi you can get. Yep, that good. But in those …

Read more 2019 Kia Optima SX Turbo – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

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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 …

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

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 …

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

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, …

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

Luxury Flagship Comparison – 1st Place – 2018 Cadillac CT6 Platinum – By Carl Malek

When we first started this comparison series, three flagship luxury sedans entered the fray, but ultimately, only one emerged with the coveted first place slot. The 2018 Genesis G90 and the 2018 Lexus LS 500 F-Sport gave it there all in a wide range of categories, but in the end it, was ultimately the CT6 that had what it takes to emerge victorious. The exterior styling of our 2018 tester (2019 models arrive with updated styling elements) is the latest interpretation of Cadillac’s Art & Science language, and the execution is a bit jumbled. The front fascia is bold, but …

Read more Luxury Flagship Comparison – 1st Place – 2018 Cadillac CT6 Platinum – By Carl Malek

2018 Buick Regal GS – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

We’ve been really impressed by Buick lately. Both the Enclave and Encore crossover/suv’s impressed us, and the word has been getting out – Buick is selling well, and appealing to a new, younger, audience. But the Buick Regal may be the biggest surprise of all. Yes, the Regal. You probably know the name – it started way back in 1973. Along the way it has soldiered on, some models better than others. One of the high points was the Regal Grand National, with a turbo engine that caught the imagination of enthusiasts and brought back some of the luxury/performance sparkle …

Read more 2018 Buick Regal GS – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

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Luxury Flagship Comparison – 3rd Place – 2018 Lexus LS 500 F-Sport – By Carl Malek [Video]

With the recent swath of new luxury flagship sedans that have entered the marketplace, it can be very difficult to find which one is indeed the best fit for you and your budget. This tough choice helped serve as inspiration for our inaugural three way international luxury car comparison test. We assembled three of the most popular luxury flagship sedans and drove them side by side to help find which one is indeed best. The German benchmarks (BMW 7-Series, Mercedes S-Class, and Audi A8) were excluded, and instead we focused our attention on two new players (the Genesis G90 3.3T …

Read more Luxury Flagship Comparison – 3rd Place – 2018 Lexus LS 500 F-Sport – By Carl Malek [Video]

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Road Test Review – 2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross – By Carl Malek

It has been quite a roller coaster ride for Mitsubishi over the past few years. Caught in the aftermath of an emissions scandal in Japan, as well as being a small time player in the U.S. market, the Japanese automaker entered into an alliance with Nissan-Renault in 2016. This partnership opened the path for Mitsubishi to potentially crawl its way back to relevance, but will the promised wave of new models and platforms be enough to bring Mitsubishi back into the light, or is it too little too late?   To find out, we got behind the wheel of the …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2018 Hyundai Kona – By Carl Malek

Typically when it comes to small value focused cars, Hyundai has always been one of the front runners, and has largely done a good job catering to this still strong segment with offerings like the Elantra GT, the recently tested Hyundai Veloster, as well as the budget minded Hyundai Accent. However, in a curious twist of irony, the firm did not have a formal compact crossover entry to take advantage of this recently growing offshoot of the utility market. The 2018 Hyundai Kona aims to rectify that, but can the Kona’s youthful confidence allow it to standout in a segment …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Hyundai Kona – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander LE 2.4 S-AWC – By Carl Malek

Let’s face it, crossovers and SUVs have become the new normal for many American families often serving as a replacement for the family sedan (oh how the times have changed.) However, amid the sea of established entries from the likes of Chevrolet, Hyundai, Toyota, and Ford one plucky underdog is still hanging in there, Mitsubishi. The company once known for performance cars (as well as being recently taken over by Nissan) is banking its future on being green, and finally embracing the utility vehicle sales trend. With the Eclipse Cross currently dominating the headlines, can the Asian firm’s other SUV …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander LE 2.4 S-AWC – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2018 Rolls Royce Wraith Black Badge – By Carl Malek

When it comes to ultra British luxury cars only one brand has managed to generate a unique appeal and a sense of grandeur that has come to define its iconic history. That brand of course, is none other than Rolls Royce, which has always managed to steal the show in its own unique way. It’s most recent attention grabbing feat was a few years ago in 2016 when the brand unleashed a Rolls Royce Wraith Black Badge on the legendary Goodwood Festival of Speed. Placing sixth in the Supercar Run portion of the event, the Black Badge was a glimpse …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Rolls Royce Wraith Black Badge – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2018 Jaguar E-Pace P300 R-Dynamic – By Carl Malek

When the 2018 Jaguar E-Pace arrived on the scene, it brought a breeze of inevitability to the storied British luxury brand. Once known for stubbornly resisting the SUV craze with its car-centric lineup, and the erratic reliability that came along with it, Jaguar is making a serious push at being a true contender in the luxury automobile ranks. This included adopting SUVs into its ranks starting with the bigger F-Pace SUV. The F-Pace was a great first step, and it offered buyers a good blend of performance and capability. However, its large size also caused the F-Pace to not resonate …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Jaguar E-Pace P300 R-Dynamic – By Carl Malek

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Road Test Review – 2018 Maserati Levante SQ4 – By Carl Malek

It seems that the last few years have been the rise and zenith of the SUV. With low fuel prices and increased demand, even companies that were once known for being purely car focused are now getting in on the SUV craze. Maserati is one of these firms eager to take their own slice of the SUV pie. But can this stylish Italian entry truly succeed in helping Maserati pull a figurative upset against established luxury contenders? Or is it proof that Maserati still has alot to learn before taking on established SUV rivals like Land Rover and Porsche? To …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Maserati Levante SQ4 – By Carl Malek

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Road Test Review – 2019 Hyundai Veloster Turbo Ultimate – By Carl Malek

When the first generation Veloster arrived on the scene several years ago, it was a symbol of Hyundai’s early foray into revamping the image of its overall product lineup. While the first generation Veloster did have a few rough edges and flaws underneath its slick skin, it nevertheless served as a compelling “reverse halo” offering that did bring in more young buyers. With the arrival of the second generation Veloster, Hyundai has made the usual assortment of updates and revisions to help the Veloster refine and hone its youthful swagger. Can this updated Veloster stand out in a segment that …

Read more Road Test Review – 2019 Hyundai Veloster Turbo Ultimate – By Carl Malek

2018 Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

A friend just asked about buying a Diesel-engine car. Diesel? Really? It seems like that boat has sailed a while ago, with VW’s diesel-gate putting the powertrain on the chopping block for most passenger cars. Hybrids and EV’s are where it’s going – for their combination of low or zero emissions, hefty government subsidies (ok, those may go away) and driving fun. Yes, driving fun. And one of the most interesting of these vehicles is the new Honda Clarity. A new way to roll Well, the Honda Clarity actually gives you three ways to roll – if you’re on the …

Read more 2018 Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Road Test Review – 2018 Dodge Durango SRT 392- Road Test Review – By Carl Malek

In an era where fuel economy and a push for green technology are becoming paramount initiatives in the automotive industry, FCA and its SRT performance brand are still providing customers a lineup of vehicles that aim to defy political correctness, while also pushing the boundaries of performance even further. While the bulk of the spotlight is centered around the growing family of Hellcat powered offerings in its stable, as well as the limited production Dodge Demon, SRT has not forgotten about its other models. One of these is the 2018 Dodge Durango SRT which aims to transform an already competent …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Dodge Durango SRT 392- Road Test Review – By Carl Malek

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Road Test Review – 2018 Kia Stinger AWD 2.0T – By Carl Malek

It’s no secret that Kia has undergone a transformation the past few years. Once known for making products that were cheap and not much else, the Korean car brand has now embraced a fresh new wave of substance, thanks to models such as the Optima, and the flagship K900 sedans. The newest member of the family is the 2018 Kia Stinger, which aims to compete with the best that Europe has to offer. But can the Stinger hold its own against benchmarks like the BMW 3-Series and the Mercedes C-Class? or does it lack the venom needed to make a …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Kia Stinger AWD 2.0T – By Carl Malek

2019 Acura RDX A-Spec – First Drive Review – By Josh Seaman

When I found out that Acura was going to release an all new RDX, redesigned from the ground up, powered by a new 2.0L turbo powerplant, I was cautiously optimistic. You see, I remember Acura’s glory days. I remember the Legend and Integra and Honda’s feverish devotion to prove that they could swing with the big boys. Even today, many of their vehicles from this era remain sought after by enthusiasts and commuters alike. [Ed’s note: Josh drove an early-1990s Legend in his youth!  The one with the shouty V6 howl!] But somewhere between then and now they seemed to …

Read more 2019 Acura RDX A-Spec – First Drive Review – By Josh Seaman

2018 Honda Civic Type R – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Are you an extrovert? Do you like being the center of attention? Do you like answering lots of questions from people you don’t know? Then we have the car for you. The Honda Civic Type R. It’s R turn. While Type R Honda models have been the epitome of performance for the brand elsewhere, Honda and Acura have been extremely stingy bringing any to the U.S. When the new Civic bowed, a promise   that the lineup would include the first ever U.S. Civic Type R got enthusiasts all fizzy with excitement. Sparkling or flat? Not everyone likes bright and bold …

Read more 2018 Honda Civic Type R – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Road Test Review – 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe RST – By Carl Malek

Remember when sport SUVS once ruled the automotive landscape? Indeed in the 90’s and early 2000’s there was a period in time when these muscle bound behemoths were the proverbial jewels in the pocket books of the Detroit Big Three. But once gas prices rose, and the economic recession took hold, the segment went out with a whimper, and nearly disappeared. With a new era of cheap oil and a revived interest in SUVs, the segment has bounced back, and has produced a new crop of entries. One of these is the 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe RST, but can this new …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Chevrolet Tahoe RST – By Carl Malek

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Road Test Review – 2018 Audi Q7 3.0T – By Carl Malek

With the way crossover entries have evolved over the past several decades, automakers are scrambling to keep more established entries relevant as the segment rapidly evolves. One of these is the venerable Audi Q7 which is the biggest and most opulent (for the moment) entry fielded by the German luxury car giant. When it first appeared in the U.S. back in 2007, it represented a seismic shift for Audi, and turned the once car focused brand into a more balanced juggernaut. As for the Q7, it was a key entry in Volkswagen’s greater ploy towards expanding its diesel lineup. This …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Audi Q7 3.0T – By Carl Malek

2018 Ford Expedition Platinum – HD Road Test Review

If you love big trucks and fast Fords…. the 2018 Expedition will be a game-changer for your family. Here is a truck so full of substantive improvements and taste upgrades that a reviewer barely knows where to start. How about 10-speed automatic and chassis rigidity that is through-the-roof versus any Expedition before. And then there is exterior style that takes time to even sink in.  Ultra-modern. Best LEDs on the road. Stance for days comes naturally with these new alloy body panels. We have a terrific drive video, 100 photos and standard headers below for this class-leading full-size SUV.   HD …

Read more 2018 Ford Expedition Platinum – HD Road Test Review

Road Test Review – 2018 Toyota Camry XLE – By Carl Malek

When we last got behind the wheel of the 2018 Honda Accord, we remarked about the rivalry between it and the Toyota Camry. Both cars have been gunning for each other in the sales race for the past few decades, and now we get to view the other side of the fence with the 2018 Toyota Camry. Can the Camry still retain its benchmark status against the rest of the segment? Or has it lost its spot on the sales throne to its bitter enemy? The exterior styling of the 2018 Camry is arguably its most potent talking point. Once …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Toyota Camry XLE – By Carl Malek

2018 Lexus LS500 RWD with LLS+A – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

$98,930. That’s the first question, isn’t it? So, if you had to ask, now you now. That’s if you know what it is. And frankly, a lot of people, didn’t. Oh, sure they knew it was a Lexus, but even in the premium rarefied air the previous LS model cruised, the new model looks so different, so more upscale and personal, they thought it was some new super-sedan from Toyota’s luxury division. Jaws Will Drop Based on the same chassis as the gorgeous LC coupe, the new LS as just as thrilling – if a bit more reserved, due to …

Read more 2018 Lexus LS500 RWD with LLS+A – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Road Test Review – 2018 Honda Accord Touring (1.5 liter) – By Carl Malek

When updating a classic that has withstood the test of time, the unenviable task of creating a distinctive entry without tarnishing the reputation of the nameplate can be a daunting endeavor. It’s especially challenging when that nameplate happens to be the venerable Honda Accord. First arriving in the U.S. market during the advent of 8-track tapes, disco music, and pet rocks, the Accord immediately stood out to buyers not only due to its exceptional build quality, but also its impeccable fuel economy. As the decades passed and 8-tracks transitioned to CDs, and ultimately the MP3 file. The Accord remained a …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Honda Accord Touring (1.5 liter) – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2017 Lexus RC 350 F-Sport (RWD) – By Carl Malek

When we last had a chance to sample Lexus’s two door stable in our Northern outpost, it was behind the wheel of the brand’s most opulent offering, the V8 powered 2018 LC 500. The LC is proof that Lexus can build sporty coupes, but does this magic transfer over to the more mainstream RC lineup? Or does the RC lack the sizzle that has defined Lexus’s past coupe efforts?   When you look at the RC 350 from various angles, it’s obvious that the RC is an intriguing canvas. The spindle grille for example is a love it or hate …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Lexus RC 350 F-Sport (RWD) – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2017 Toyota Prius Prime Plus – By Carl Malek

Ever wondered how you could make a Toyota Prius even more fuel efficient and environmentally conscious, while also cramming even more convenience features and technology into its distinctive wrapper at the same time? This conundrum reminds us of some of the great engineering challenges that America has faced over the years. While brilliant minds, technological advances, and the occasional rocket scientist or two played a hand in solving these fore-mentioned problems, Toyota had a delicate balancing act to achieve when it came time to build its latest Prii offering. The end result is the 2017 Toyota Prius Prime, but does …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Toyota Prius Prime Plus – By Carl Malek

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Road Test Review: 2019 Infiniti QX50 (AWD) – By Carl Malek

When the Infiniti QX50 first appeared back in 2007, it was known at the time as the EX35, and boasted a wagon-like profile that sought to lure in luxury crossover buyers that would have otherwise gravitated towards offerings from BMW, Lexus, and Audi. However, the rear-wheel drive based offering missed the mark, and despite a refresh in 2014 that added a name change and tweaked styling to the mix, customers still stayed away in droves. Infiniti aims to shake up the segment with the newly redesigned 2019 QX50. But can its radically altered sheet of clothes, and a new engine …

Read more Road Test Review: 2019 Infiniti QX50 (AWD) – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2017 Kia Forte S – By Carl Malek

With the 2019 Kia Forte embracing some of the successful DNA that has turned the Stinger into a compelling BMW fighter, the current generation Kia Forte has the unenviable task of staying fresh and relevant against a relatively fresh crop of contenders. The Forte offers tweaked styling and versatile feature content for a new generation of buyers, but can these wholesome charms keep the Forte in winning form until its replacement arrives? or will the 2019 version be forced to regain lost ground when it eventually arrives in dealer lots. The exterior styling of our Currant Red “S” grade tester …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Kia Forte S – By Carl Malek

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Road Test Review – 2017 Volkswagen e-Golf – By Carl Malek

When the e-Golf first arrived on our shores back in 2014, it was considered an afterthought especially considering that it arrived during the pinnacle of Volkswagen’s TDI-fueled dominance of the green car market. But with this diesel empire toppled by scandal, and a growing field of electric vehicles entering the marketplace, the e-Golf’s role in Volkswagen’s arsenal has become much more important. Can this electrified Golf stand out against the competition while still retaining the VW’s winning formula? At first glance, the exterior styling does not scream that your driving an electric car. In fact, it looks like a run …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Volkswagen e-Golf – By Carl Malek

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2017 Ford Mustang SHELBY GT350 – Review w/ 5 HD Videos

Why? Because Racecar! Spending a week in the Shelby GT350 is one of the highlights of my life so far.  Nothing else has come close to this level of animal aggression on the road.  The GT350’s $60k pricetag feels like the bargain of the century.  For a Mustang so special that it’s the 911 GT3 RS of muscle-cars. A car this tight and taut feels like it’s doing 170-mph even at idle.  No other Mustang gets anywhere near this power-on brilliance.  High revs, high power peaks and few shifts are the way to rock GT350 around a racetrack fast. This …

Read more 2017 Ford Mustang SHELBY GT350 – Review w/ 5 HD Videos

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2018 INFINITI QX80 – First Drive Review w/ Performance Handling Video

QX80 is truly a gentle giant.  This full-size SUV has massive amounts of space and towing strength – key reasons this big brute is still so popular years since its 2011 launch. This 2018 refresh is the second round of facelift updates for the QX80.  New bodywork in the entire nose and tail strikes a fresh pose for 2018 – and certainly looks sharp. We got an early chance to drive the new QX80 around Charleston SC this week.  This is a deeply impressive truck with superb ride quality and luxury galore.  Lux materials and of course the luxury of …

Read more 2018 INFINITI QX80 – First Drive Review w/ Performance Handling Video

2018 Lexus LC500 – Supercar of the Year – Road Test Review

No test car here at CRD has created more of a stir than this Lexus LC500. Long-lost pals sought out rides. The Cars ‘n Coffee crowd was enchanted LC even stirred wild thumbs-ups from other drivers on the road. Nobody loved this next-generation Lexus supercar more than its driver, though. This all-new platform started life on a mission to sink the engine lower and much more mid-ship than any Lexus before.  The results not only lighten the handling mood dramatically, but they also sharpen the turn-in radically. A new 10-speed automatic joins the thrilling 5.0-liter V8 from the GS-F and …

Read more 2018 Lexus LC500 – Supercar of the Year – Road Test Review

2018 INFINITI QX30 Sport – Road Test Review w/ Performance Drive Video!

 We start the drive video review asking a serious question: does this Euro Infiniti QX30 belong in the USA? This baby Infiniti has two variants on sale in America: the crossover-ish QX30 and QX30 AWD.  Then there is the wild cousin: the QX30 Sport.  Lowered ride height.  Performance mods and gloss black finishes galore.  Stance to make the most of the double-clutch automatic and turbo motor from Mercedes-Benz. Premium compact five-doors are big business on the continent.  Instead of trading up to a sedan after the Golf/Focus class, owners will shell out big cash to get into the A3, 1 …

Read more 2018 INFINITI QX30 Sport – Road Test Review w/ Performance Drive Video!

Road Test Review – 2017 Toyota Yaris iA – By Carl Malek

The legacy of Scion continues to permeate throughout Toyota showrooms. While the logos, marketing material, and the fancy displays have long since been deposited in the dark corners of history, several of its models continue to linger in Toyota showrooms. One of these is the budget friendly iA sedan. Designed and engineered with help from Mazda, the iA was Scion’s last ditch effort at attracting young first time buyers before the rug was pulled from under it. Will the addition of a Toyota badge and a new name allow the Yaris iA to still fulfill its mission in life? Or …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Toyota Yaris iA – By Carl Malek

Old vs New – 2018 Chevrolet Equinox vs 2017 Chevrolet Equinox – By Carl Malek

When an automobile is extensively redesigned and or updated for the new model year, it really makes you wonder if it can indeed be better than the model it replaced? That question compelled us to take a closer look at one of Chevrolet’s strongest selling crossover entries, the venerable Chevrolet Equinox. When the second generation model was introduced in time for the 2010 model year, it proved to be popular with a wide swath of buyers, and as a result, they are a common sight on the roads of Metro Detroit. The 2018 model aims to continue this tradition of …

Read more Old vs New – 2018 Chevrolet Equinox vs 2017 Chevrolet Equinox – By Carl Malek

Electric or Hybrid, Which Is Indeed The Superior Green Option?

Remember back when gasoline (and to a lesser extent) diesel engines, were once the sole choices for U.S. drivers looking to buy an automobile for their driveway? We sure do, and we also remember back when the idea of electric let alone hybrid offerings were mere science experiments that existed in the world of concept cars. Fast forward a few decades, and this established order has been toppled by a strong pool of hybrid vehicles, as well as the emergence of a new wave of all electric offerings. But which choice is better for consumers? And which choice will stand …

Read more Electric or Hybrid, Which Is Indeed The Superior Green Option?

Road Test Review – 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Ti (RWD) – By Carl Malek

Alfa Romeo has seen its fair share of ups and downs since it made its most recent effort at returning to the U.S. luxury car market. For starters, instead of choosing to start its new-found U.S. adventure with a mass market oriented model, the proudly Italian sports car maker chose to unleash two borderline supercars on the market. The first was the limited production Alfa Romeo 8C which featured a delightfully good Ferrari sourced V8, stylish bodywork, and a six figure price tag. Next was the Alfa Romeo 4C an equally stylish four cylinder two seat sports car that helped …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Ti (RWD) – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2017 Ford F-450 King Ranch Super Duty – By Carl Malek

When it comes to pickup trucks, the old adage “Bigger is better” still dominates the segment. While light duty models like the Ford F-150, Ram 1500, and the Chevrolet Silverado 1500 will represent the bulk of pickup truck sales, customers in need of a heavy duty workhorse will no doubt be drawn to their heavy duty counterparts. With their beefy hardware, massive size, and immense towing and hauling capabilities, these big beasts are always distinctive sights out on the open road. But can they still function as daily drivers while delivering the capability customers demand? or is this an imperfect …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Ford F-450 King Ranch Super Duty – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2017 Mazda CX-9 Signature – By Carl Malek

When it comes to sporty driving, the folks at Mazda have always had a knack for balancing sporty virtues with enough value and style to make their vehicles a compelling choice for budget minded enthusiasts. For a while, that tradition didn’t necessarily apply to their SUV/CUV offerings. But with the recently revamped CX-5 and CX-3 blowing a blast of fresh air into this segment, it was only fitting that the CX-9 would embrace this wind of change with vigor. Does the 2017 CX-9 gain some new tricks from its suite of updates, or does this people hauler lose out against …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Mazda CX-9 Signature – By Carl Malek

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Marketplace Comparisons – 2017 Genesis G90 Ultimate (RWD) – By Carl Malek

Remember when the flagship luxury car segment used to be solely defined by the Mercedes S-Class, BMW 7-Series, and the Audi A8? Granted, there were also entries like the Jaguar XJ, Maserati Quattroporte, as well as the Lexus LS, but each of these entries only offered a small slice of the broader all round package that is demanded by elite buyers. The past few years have seen an explosion of choices with these familiar names being joined by new entries such as the Volvo S90, Lincoln Continental, Cadillac CT6, and the subject of this installment of Marketplace Comparisons, the 2017 …

Read more Marketplace Comparisons – 2017 Genesis G90 Ultimate (RWD) – By Carl Malek

2018 Hyundai Elantra GT Sport 6MT – First Drive Review

Hyundai is perfecting its performance-car credentials.  The latest pack of redesigns go as hard at their tech/ style as they do at full turbo boost and fast corners. This handling skill and steering feel are creating a new impression of the brand as a whole. You need a preface like this to absorb the impressions of how sweet a drive the Elantra GT Sport was the other day.  This is Hyundai’s Scirocco rival for Europe and GTI-fighter for the USA — with a slinky low roof, five-door layout and lively powertrain.  How alive is GT?  It forms the basis for …

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Road Test Review – 2017 Lexus RX350 F Sport – By Carl Malek

With the crossover segment quickly transforming into a key battleground for the worlds automakers, the pressure is on for these companies to create a compelling crossover that’s a perfect fit for a wide range of customer tastes. Lexus aims to establish itself as a top player in the luxury crossover segment with the 2017 RX350. The RX first appeared back in 1998, and quickly made a name for itself not only because of its approachable price tag, but also its slick for the period styling elements. But can the 2017 RX continue its winning ways? Or has it become a …

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Road Test Review – 2017 Dodge Challenger GT – By Carl Malek

A revolution is in the air in the muscle car segment. Ever since one can remember, a typical American muscle car was generally known for having a big V8 engine and, more importantly, rear-wheel drive. Even 10 years ago, the very idea of an all-wheel drive muscle coupe was seen as an alien concept to the big three domestic automakers (GM Ford and FCA.) The folks at Dodge are eager to overthrow the established order with the 2017 Dodge Challenger GT, but can this pioneering model bring true four season performance to a traditionally two season vehicle segment? or is …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Dodge Challenger GT – By Carl Malek