2016 Peugeot 509

Mazda6 vs Ford Fusion Shows How To Make the FWD 2016 Peogeot 509 Sexy

Ed’s Note: This article is feeling condescending as I review and ready it for publishing, and I regret that tone. Nobody likes being spoken down to. That is not my intention. Starting from a basic place – Just to explain it all, as best I can, to someone for whom car design might not a passion area. How to make a front-drive car sexy and stylish — while keeping it primarily front-drive? Not an easy task, and one that has taken many years to get anywhere near resultion. The clearest example of the ideas and design analyses explored below is …

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Car-Revs-Daily

Road Test Review w/ Pricing and Specs – 2014 Mazda3 Grand Touring

We were amazed with the all-new 2014 Mazda3 from the moment we laid eyes on it – especially the slinky and low-slung sedan variant that just arrived this Spring to Mazda dealers nationwide. After some joyful driving of the loaded 2014 Mazda3 s Grand Touring model, it is clear that the praise we shared in the “2014’s Smartest Compact” article was not sufficient. This might be the best car on the market in general, with no caveats for size or price. It is that good. I am struggling to convey how outstanding a machine it is in all regards — …

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Mazda MX-5 Adds 40HP, Drops 800LB: BAUER Catfish Shell Over Flyin Miata Turbo

This is an interesting meeting of the Miata minds. Bauer Limited Production’s Catfish body overhaul for the 1990-2005 Mazda MX-5 with Flyin’ Miata’s turbocharged engine underneath. It is a recipe that delivers surprising style and divine performance, that is for sure! This Flyin’ Miata example is a bit gnarly in the headlight execution and in some tiny spots on the metallic vinyl wrap, but is still quite bewitching in the flesh. The $14,000 Bauer Catfish bodywork is a relatively simple bolt-on, bolt-off design – and also cuts 800 pounds from the cars’ curb weights. Not too shabby, especially considering the …

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Annotated Design Analysis — Peugeot EXALT — How To Make the 2016 Peogeot 509 Sexy — Mazda6 vs Ford Fusion Examples

Ed’s Note: This article is feeling condescending as I review and ready it for publishing, and I regret that tone. Nobody likes being spoken down to. That is not my intention. Just to explain it all, as best I can, to someone for whom car design might not a passion area. How to make a front-drive car sexy and stylish — while keeping it primarily front-drive? Not an easy task, and one that has taken many years to get anywhere near resultion. The clearest example of the ideas and design analyses explored below is the latest Mazda6, which is far …

Read more Annotated Design Analysis — Peugeot EXALT — How To Make the 2016 Peogeot 509 Sexy — Mazda6 vs Ford Fusion Examples

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Mazda HAZUMI! Next Mazda2 Going Upscale With Deep KODO Shield Grille, LEDs and SkyActiv Technology

The Hazumi! If there were ever a cuter name that really syncs with the ZoomZoom ethos: it must be this. The Hazumi is a lightly-veiled look at the next Mazda2, which appears to move upmarket with a wider platform and far more appealing aesthetics. Pricing for this city car and its production variants are not known, but a 2015 model year Mazda2 seems like a smart bet. Deep bow to headlineauto.co.uk for the real-life images of this concept today in Geneva. Thanks!  

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Best of Awards — 2014 Mazda3 Sedan and Hatch — The Smartest Compact Car in America

The Mazda3 is an amazing, incredible achievement. While preparing this article, I could not help being stunned by these tasteful, unique and attractive designs inside and out. Both the 5-door and the brand-new four-door sedan are extremely good-looking and sophisticated cars from all angles. I thought to myself — is this the thinking man’s BMW or VW Golf? As I moved further into the specs, I realized — this is just a brilliant package up and down the range! Automatic, manual, small engine or big: the Mazda3 just nails every single category or theoretical competitor I can think to name. …

Read more Best of Awards — 2014 Mazda3 Sedan and Hatch — The Smartest Compact Car in America

2014 Mazda6 i Touring - Video Summary + 40 High-Res Images17

2014 Mazda6 i Touring is An Incredible Machine — Eerily Silent, Smooth and Efficient

[Orig Published on: Nov 25, 2013 @ 9:25] Here are two insight-rich video reviews from the exceptionally-competent, handsome and affordable Mazda6. 2014 Mazda6 i Touring – Benefits Summary Video 2014 Mazda6 i Touring – Highway Refinement Video  

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Empire Records Generation — 2014 Accord Hybrid EX-L on Sexy Sugar High to Battle Mazda6 and Ford Fusion

Shock me, shock me, shock me… with that deviant behavior. – Empire Records (1995), Warner Bros. 2014 might be the year hybrids really start to blossom as a tech option that does not have to ruin your style like a light-green Prius. Case in point is the deceptively handsome Honda Accord Hybrid EX-L – shown in silver here – and even the Accord Hybrid Touring is a bit less dorky for this year.   [Wearing nothing but a MusicTown apron] Gina: Welcome to MusicTown, may I service you? That is great news for Honda. Have you seen the Ford Fusion …

Read more Empire Records Generation — 2014 Accord Hybrid EX-L on Sexy Sugar High to Battle Mazda6 and Ford Fusion

2014 MX-5 Club (32)

2014 Mazda MX-5 Club Brings New Colors, Dark Wheels, Gloss Black Accents and Power Hardtop Option from $26,000

The next MX-5 is in the home stretch of development in Japan ahead of an expected debut some time in 2014 or early 2015, with deliveries to America set to start shortly afterward. The next MX-5 will spawn an Alfa Romeo Spider twin, with both built to quality standards Fiat could not dream of achieving without Mazda’s Hiroshima-based talent. Development of the MX-5 is the cornerstone of Mazda’s sports car teams these days – and for good reason! The MX-5 is the ultimate track-day thriller: with enough power to feel the rush but also enough playfulness to really test your …

Read more 2014 Mazda MX-5 Club Brings New Colors, Dark Wheels, Gloss Black Accents and Power Hardtop Option from $26,000

2014 Mazda6 i Touring - Video Summary + 40 High-Res Images6

2014 Mazda6 i Touring – 40 All-New, High-Res Images

2014 Mazda6 i Touring – 40 All-New, High-Res Images   Hopefully the Mazda6’s stunning lines can do some of the talking for us. Enjoy! The 2014 Mazda6 is an amazing achievement – a sports car within reach of Camry buyers. 2014 Mazda6 i Touring – Exterior Gallery       2014 Mazda6 i Touring – Interior Gallery    

2021 Ford Bronco Sport Proves Its Chops, Crushes Crash Tests With Perfect Rating

Sibling rivalry is everywhere these days, and that includes the automotive industry. With its big brother being delayed by multiple COVID-19 related delays, the smaller Bronco Sport has risen to the occasion and has played a big role in Ford expanding its efforts to transform the Bronco nameplate into a lifestyle brand. The Bronco Sport has just begun filtering its way into dealerships. Ford is now revealing that the small SUV managed to achieve a big milestone when it comes to safety, with the off-roader getting a perfect crash-test score from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS.)    An …

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2021 Lexus UX 200 F SPORT Review by Ben Lewis

In marketing terms, UX is the shorthand for “User Experience”. So, it seems a natural question, does Lexus’ smallest Crossover/SUV give you the user experience luxury buyers expect? Let’s take a look. Familiar Sporty Style Look at the UX and you can see the family resemblance with the larger NX and RX crossovers. That’s a good thing – Lexus has really crafted its own style now, and these vehicles are modern and sporty with sharp angles and aggressive lines. Like our recent review of the Lexus ES250 AWD, the front end has that massive spindle grille, but like the ES, …

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Road Test Review – 2020 Toyota Corolla XSE (Sedan) – The World’s Most Underrated Performance Sedan?

In a world filled with fun entries like the Mazda 3, Honda Civic, and even the Volkswagen Jetta we will understand if the Toyota Corolla appears to not have the chops to enter this esteemed pedigree of compact cars at first glance. The Corolla was an avid follower of the Maytag school of driving. It looked like a dryer, drove like an uninspired pack of socks, and rode through the motions like the novel Irene Iddesleigh. But times are changing at Toyota with the Japanese auto giant embracing newfound levels of fun and style. The Supra might have helped spearhead …

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2021 Honda Pilot Black Edition by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the VW Atlas, and came away impressed with the 3-row SUV’s nice driving manners and European feel. A VW through and through to be sure. And now we have Honda’s competitor for your same hard-earned dollar the 3-row Pilot. So how does it stack up? Let’s take a look! Dressed to Impress Following the sensible design of such models as the CR-V and Passport, the Pilot was never one to knock you over. In fact, we loved the original Pilot, which was a big, square and blocky – so functional it was stylish in its own way. …

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Best & Worst Cars of 2020: The Metro Detroit/Pandemic Apocalypse Edition

The year 2020 will arguably go down as one of the most significant periods in all of human history. In addition to the social upheaval and rapid political changes that took place, the world was also thrusted into the shackles of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Despite these challenges though, we still remained committed to not only bring you world class news content, but also a steady stream of Michigan made reviews. With that out of the way, Here’s our three best and not so best cars of 2020   The Best: 2020 Lincoln Aviator Black Label It’s no secret that …

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2021 Subaru Crosstrek 2.5L Limited by Ben Lewis

It’s hard not to like the Subaru Crosstrek – it’s a great looking small crossover, based on the equally likeable Subaru Impreza and it combines a nice compact size with good off-road abilities, and most of the friendly traits that make Subaru an agreeable brand. It has been hard to love the Crosstrek, though. It’s always felt a little underpowered, and the lack of power seemed to highlight the CVT transmission in a negative light. In short, a good vehicle looking for a better engine. Well, Subie heard our wishes, and for 2021, a more powerful 2.5-liter, 4-cylinder replaces the …

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A yellow flash of fun, we check out the 2021 Toyota Supra four cylinder

A legacy can be defined as something that is left long after the person or thing creating it is gone. For a long time, that also defined the Toyota Supra which was Toyota‘s pinnacle of budget focused performance. First appearing in the 1980s, the Supra really got into its groove in the 1990s, with the later turbocharged models making a name for themselves out on the street and on the track. However, shifting economic headwinds forced the Supra to exit our shores in 1998, and for awhile, that was the end of the story. But a new generation of buyers …

Read more A yellow flash of fun, we check out the 2021 Toyota Supra four cylinder

2020 Nissan 370Z 50th Anniversary Edition by Ben Lewis

Legend, Icon, familiar friend. All of these can be said about the Nissan Z. First offered as a 1970 model, the 240Z blew away the affordable sports car marketplace, making the MG’s and Triumphs of the day seem absolutely ancient, which they kind of were. Over the years, the Z has veered on and off the path of true sports car-ism, the 280ZX and early 300ZX were posh cruisers, but offered little thrills. The 1990 Z was a return to form – an excellent sports car. And the 350Z and the current 370Z continued the trend. So, we are happy …

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2020 Subaru Ascent by Ben Lewis

What if you love your Subaru Outback but find yourself needing more room, especially a 3rd row of seats? Or if you have a 3-row SUV and always wanted a Subaru to call your own? Easy, get yourself a Subaru Ascent. We worried that the transition to such a large vehicle might dilute the Subie goodness we’ve found in the Outback, Forester, Crosstrek – even the WRX. So, we had to ask. Is the biggest Subaru still true to the cause? Subaru Design on Display Well, it certainly looks that way. If you didn’t have a reference point, you might …

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2020 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Platinum L4 AWD by Ben Lewis

The Toyota Highlander has always been a solid choice in the mid-size SUV segment. By solid, we mean, well-built, good value, Toyota reliability. But ahem, nothing to get excited about. Well, until now. For 2020, there’s an all-new Highlander, and while it hasn’t lost any of the things that make a Highlander a stress-free choice, this one’s notably more passionate, from style, to driving, to features. You can now lust after a Highlander and not be locked up in the automotive looney bin. Big and Bold The first thing that hits you is the Highlander’s take-no-prisoners design. It looks bigger, …

Read more 2020 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Platinum L4 AWD by Ben Lewis

2020 Toyota Camry TRD V6 Sedan by Ben Lewis

Introducing Toyota’s hot new performance vehicle – the TRD Camry. Toyota Racing Development? The in-house racing division of the big T? And Camry? Sounds like two things that don’t go together – like jumbo shrimp. But just like that crave-worthy crustacean, it comes together quite nicely. And it just might be a performance bargain to boot. Big Bold Style When the Camry was redone in 2018, we loved the new aggressive look – muscular and wide, it looked more like a European sport sedan, and had real presence. To give it the “Competition Look” the TRD adds unique piano-black front …

Read more 2020 Toyota Camry TRD V6 Sedan by Ben Lewis

Road Test Review – 2020 Toyota Highlander: Platinum Hybrid

It seems that there is no shortage of capable three row SUVs to choose from these days. With the segment currently going through a massive boom time, manufacturers big and small have unleashed a whole swath of models to try and cash in on the pent up demand. The Ford Explorer, Hyundai Palisade and the Honda Pilot are just some of the popular marques out in the market place today. However, the Volkswagen Atlas Mazda CX-9 and the Subaru Ascent are eager to disrupt the established pecking order. One of the veteran offerings is the Toyota Highlander which underwent a …

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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 …

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

2020 Toyota C-HR Limited By Ben Lewis

It’s interesting how time changes things. When we tested the 2018 C-HR, it was one of the first of the mini-crossovers, and it looked like the small sedan was on its way of going extinct. Well, the small sedan still isn’t what it used to be, but it’s around. And we’ve found some really good ones lately, including the Toyota Corolla and Kia Forte GT. But what’s even more interesting to us, is that the mini-crossover has now been attracting the interest of a new type of buyer – those who were thinking about luxury vehicles, but with the economy …

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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]

2020 BMW M340i xDrive Sedan by Ben Lewis

In every market segment there is the dominant player. Small affordable sports car? Miata. Import pickup truck? Tacoma. And when it comes to premium sport sedan, that would be the BMW 3-series. Which is not to say there isn’t competition there, in fact a bunch of wonderful sedans from the Audi A4 to the Genesis G70 to the Volvo S60 are gunning to be the quickest gun in town. But it always seemed that the BMW 3 is the benchmark. And now they went and made it incredible – welcome to the BMW M340i. M340i Exterior – Low-key flyer The …

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2020 Mustang Shelby GT500 Carbon Fiber Track Package

Ford Mustang Once Again World’s Best Selling Sports Car, Beats Out Rivals For Coveted Sales Throne

The Ford Mustang has alot of things to celebrate today, Not only is today the 56th anniversary of the start of production for the legendary pony car, but the Mustang also manged to retain its title as the world’s best selling sports car thanks to a strong sales performance during the 2019 model year. This is the fifth year that the Mustang has sat at the top of the sports car sales race, with a Ford release revealing that the company managed to sell 102,090 units globally during 2019 according to a report from the latest edition of the IHS’s …

Read more Ford Mustang Once Again World’s Best Selling Sports Car, Beats Out Rivals For Coveted Sales Throne

Road Test Review – 2020 Toyota Yaris XLE Sedan – By Carl Malek

The Toyota Yaris has had a very interesting life, with twists and turns worthy of a Tom Clancy novel. Once unveiled as a port of the model lineup for the axed Scion brand, the little four door transitioned to the main Toyota roster where it was briefly sold alongside its cruder predecessor. This went on until it took over the Yaris nameplate a short while ago, and has continued its role as Toyota’s smallest sub-compact offering. When we last met it, it was a few years ago where we had the chance to pilot a manual transmission equipped model. But …

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2020 VW Jetta GLI Autobahn by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the all-new 2020 Kia Forte and came away impressed. It’s the latest of the new-class of fun-to-drive sedans that are taking the fight to the small crossover/SUV market. And one of the most exciting members of that new class is the VW Jetta GLI. For a long time, the GLI has been the hot-tach GTI’s poor relation – nice, and fun, but no GTI. Well, all that changed last year with the introduction of the new Jetta, which included a new GLI. And VW did enthusiasts a solid – giving us the same running gear of the …

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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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2020 Hyundai Kona Ultimate FWD by Ben Lewis

Small SUV’s are a big thing, and they keep on getting bigger. And they’re not just aiming for small SUV and crossover buyers, they’re going after small car buyers too. The new Mazda CX30 for example, is more a tall hatch than anything else. The Hyundai Kona could fit into that mold as well. It definitely has SUV styling cues, but the size certainly wouldn’t turn off buyers coming from small cars. And as a bonus, this is one of the most fun small SUV’s to drive. Spending a week in a Kona is a much fun as…. well, a …

Read more 2020 Hyundai Kona Ultimate FWD by Ben Lewis

2020 Chevrolet Blazer Premier AWD – Off-Road Test Review – By Matt Barnes

Chevy released the Blazer one year ago and has already done a complete renaming of it’s trim levels for the 2020 model along with a few other trim and package updates. Chevy added a new mid level engine option with the 2.0 liter turbocharged four cylinder. Trim level names have changed from L, 2.5L, 3.6L cloth, 3.6L leather, RS, and Premier to L, LT, 2LT, 3LT, RS, and Premier. They have also added an auto start stop override button, three new exterior colors and a new redline edition. For our testing Chevy sent us a top-of-the-line 2020 Blazer Premier AWD …

Read more 2020 Chevrolet Blazer Premier AWD – Off-Road Test Review – By Matt Barnes

2020 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth by Ben Lewis

Ok, we’re spoiled here in California. While a great part of the country is dealing with old man Winter and shoveling their way to get cars out of the driveway, we’ve had a nice touch of warmth hitting the low 70’s. A perfect time for a zippy drop top like the Fiat 124 Spider Abarth. It’s a What? We forget sometimes that everyone isn’t a car enthusiast. But we had more than a few people asking us what our tester was. Well, it’s a Fiat, obviously, right? Until you notice that it does not say Fiat anywhere on the vehicle. …

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Morgan Plus 4 70th Anniversary Edition Brings A Golden Farewell To Outgoing Steelframe

Changes are happening at a rapid pace at Morgan Motor Company, with the bespoke British sports car maker saying farewell to its long running steel chassis. And yes we use that term quite literally, with the frame underpinning nearly all Morgan four wheeled models (Aero excluded) for over several decades. It also predates the Morgan Plus 4, which is currently celebrating its 70th anniversary this year. To help kill two birds with one stone, Morgan has unveiled an all new special edition that brings gold and platinum to the party.   Before we go any further, we might as well …

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2020 Toyota 86 Hakone Review by Ben Lewis

You have to give Toyota credit. After all, with home runs like the RAV4 (best-selling SUV in America) Camry (best-selling car in America 18 out of 19 years) Tacoma (best-selling mid-size pickup), they really don’t have to go out and sell sports cars. But they do. In fact, this year they’ve got not one, but two, the 86, and the all-new Supra. OK, you can argue the big T doesn’t go it alone – the 86 is a cooperative effort with Subaru that markets its near twin the BR-Z, and the Supra shares a great deal with the new BMW …

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2019 Hyundai Elantra Sport – Road Test Review + Drive Video

Hyundai’s global Elantra sedan brought fresh style and tech details for the 2019 model-year and this Elantra Sport trim is at the top of the range.  Pricing for the Sport comes in at about a $24k base that is well above the $18k stickers for some of the cheapest Elantras out there. For that extra cash you get a big upgrade in power, style and equipment, as you might expect.  Swapping from the default four to the turbo 1.6T with 201HP brings along an extra 52 ponies and standard 7-speed double-clutch automatic.  A stick was briefly offered but the Elantra …

Read more 2019 Hyundai Elantra Sport – Road Test Review + Drive Video

2019 Honda Civic 1.5T 2dr Touring – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Love at first sight. Okay, not at first sight. The Honda Civic coupe has been around for a while now, but there’s something special about our tester that keeps us coming back for more. And we have an idea why. It starts with choosing the right Civic We have tested a wide range of Civics, and being enthusiasts, we’ve gravitated to the hi-po models like the Civic Type R, the Civic Si and the grins-for-the-buck Civic Sport.  The first thing we noticed, they’re all 4-doors. And in the case of the Type R (or CTR for those in the know) …

Read more 2019 Honda Civic 1.5T 2dr Touring – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2019 VW Tiguan SEL Premium 4Motion Review by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the massive 2019 Toyota Sequoia, and we felt that it had earned the motto (ok, we read it on a popcorn box) Big is More. In its class the jumbo Toy makes the most of its size. But it’s not the only class where size matters. Take for example the 2019 VW Tiguan. The previous gen was one of our favorite small SUV’s – it felt like you were getting some GTI DNA mixed in with crossover practicality. When time came around for VW to update the Tig, it decided to aim directly for the U.S. market. …

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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]

2019 Mini Cooper S Hardtop 60th Anniversary – Review by Ben Lewis

When we talk about performance cars, the benchmark is still 0-60. Which may be outdated, but it’s easy to get your head around and compare cars of the past with cars of today. (Spoiler Alert – cars of today are much faster today.) That said, we are talking 0-60 mph. But with the 2019, we are talking something completely different. 0 – 60 Years Yep, years. Hard to believe that the original Mini first bowed in 1959. Especially since a super-small, efficient and fun vehicle seems so now. 1959 was an interesting year – The first Barbie Doll was introduced, …

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Road Test Followup – 2019 Hyundai Kona Ultimate By Carl Malek

When we last met the Hyundai Kona, it was in Detroit where we got to briefly experience its charms on various roads in the Metro Detroit area (as well as run into Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond of Top Gear and Grand Tour fame). Our brush with the stars aside, the Kona delivered a good first impression, thanks to its compact size, as well as the sheer amount of standard equipment that is infused into every Kona. The Kona even took its act to the green car market, where the Kona EV has been making waves since it …

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Road Test Review – 2019 Honda Civic Touring – By Carl Malek

Honda has a lot riding on the shoulders of the 2020 Civic sedan and hatchback. While the Civic still commands a sizable chunk of sales in the compact car market, it’s no secret that the nameplate has felt the pressure in recent years from a resurgence in CUV and SUV demand in the U.S. While the Civic Si and the range topping Type R have helped the Civic bolster its impressive performance credentials, the mainstream Civic has had to use a completely different set of skills to help it maintain its lofty position in Honda’s broader sales pie. The 10th …

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2019 Toyota RAV4 Limited – Review By Ben Lewis

We recently tested the 2019 RAV4 Hybrid, and came away hugely impressed. It’s a total rethink of the RAV4, and it’s bigger, better, more handsome. A winner. But in an interesting twist, Toyota made the Hybrid the performance model, with 219 horsepower, and in our XSE tester a performance tuned suspension. We’re wondering if we had been sucked in by the top of the line hybrid power version. So now, we’re back testing a well-equipped but non-hybrid model – the kind most people will end up buying to see if the standard model is as good. Looks Good Since we …

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2019 Hyundai Veloster N – Road Test Review + Performance Drive Video

What’s the purpose of owning a car besides just transportation? Sure, you need to be able to scoot around town, commute and take the occasional road trip. But beyond that, the real joy of car ownership is the entertainment value. Having a car you love to drive, and one that makes you smile every time you tap the start button, is one of the true joys in this life for some of us. Over the course of 2019 there is no car that has elicited more howling laughter in my hands than this Veloster N. Here we have Hyundai’s first …

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2019 Subaru WRX Series.Gray – Review by Ben Lewis

Funny how things change. Today, if a friend tells you they’ve bought a Subaru, it’s probably a Forester, or an Outback, maybe an Ascent. And they’re all lovely vehicles. But back in 2002, when you bought a Subie, it was probably a WRX. And it was revelation – a rally proven, high-performance legend that the brand finally decided to bring over here. And it radically changed what people thought about Subaru. And it was the beginning of a long relationship between the cute little sedan or hatch and those who love to drive. Well, now we have the 2019 WRX …

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Car-Revs-Daily Double Review – 2019 Toyta RAV4 Adventure 4WD /MSR Hubba Hubba NX-2 Backpacking Tent – By Carl Malek

When the 2019 Toyota RAV4 was unleashed into the mass market, the revamped utility offering had some very big shoes to fill. Its predecessor (outdated as it was towards the end of its life) still managed to post impressive sales numbers in 2018, and the RAV4 has always been a go to choice for many buyers that need a sensible utility offering for their everyday commuting needs. But can the 2019 Toyota RAV4 bring some much needed vigor and polish to the storied nameplate without ignoring its core audience? We were keen to find out, and devised a formidable testing …

Read more Car-Revs-Daily Double Review – 2019 Toyta RAV4 Adventure 4WD /MSR Hubba Hubba NX-2 Backpacking Tent – By Carl Malek

2019 VW Jetta GLI 35th Anniversary Edition DSG Review by Ben Lewis

We’ve been talking about great European sedans lately. In fact, we came away saying the new Mazda 3 sedan might be your best entry level Euro choice – yes, it technically isn’t European, but it sure drives that way! Well VW must have heard us, because they’ve now introduced an all new Jetta GLI, (we recently drove the regular Jetta) and it’s not only a great European sedan, it’s what the GLI should always have been – a true 4-door version of the beloved GTI hatch. Big is More We used to see that motto on popcorn at the movie …

Read more 2019 VW Jetta GLI 35th Anniversary Edition DSG Review by Ben Lewis

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

2020 Toyota Corolla SE 6-Speed Manual Sedan – Review by Ben Lewis

If I tell you there’s a 4-door compact sedan that’s got hot styling, some real attitude, and is lots of fun to drive thanks to a 6-speed manual transmission, what would you say? Civic? Mazda 3, Elantra? How about a Toyota Corolla? Yes, the Corolla. Okay, we can’t blame you if it didn’t pop in your mind. Although there have been the occasional performance versions including the hot-hatch 1988 Corolla FX16, and the 2005 Corolla XRS sedan (8,000 rpm redline!), most of the model’s reputation has been built on solid, sensible and reliable transportation over flash. And it’s been a …

Read more 2020 Toyota Corolla SE 6-Speed Manual Sedan – Review by Ben Lewis

2020 Kia Soul X-Line – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

First, a moment of silence. Today we mourn The Hamster. Well, not a real Hamster, but the special-FX rodents that came to be identified with the Kia Soul, thanks to their great commercials. For the all-new 2020 Soul, it looks like the furry funmakers have been tossed in the proverbial dustbin. (At least they could have been buried in the backyard, no?) Shed no tears, though, because this is an all-new Kia Soul, and while it keeps the, errr…Soul of the previous model, it sports a lot of great improvements that keep it one of the most enjoyable and endearing …

Read more 2020 Kia Soul X-Line – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Road Test Review – 2019 Kia Optima SX Turbo – By Carl Malek

Kia has been on a roll as of late. Led by the Kia Stinger, the sleek four door sport sedan helped change peoples perception of the Korean car brand. Once known for making budget focused entries that eschewed style and performance for the sake of a low price tag, the Stinger showed the world that style, performance, and technology have become the new pillars for future Kia products going forward. The Stinger’s DNA has begun trickling down to other members of the Kia lineup including the 2019 Kia Forte, as well as the reworked 2019 Kia Optima. But can the …

Read more Road Test Review – 2019 Kia Optima SX Turbo – By Carl Malek

Hyundai’s Venue Brings Big Personality In Small But Tidy Package

Hyundai has bold plans for the SUV market, and with the flagship Palisade and the subcompact Kona CUV covering both ends of the spectrum, the Korean auto giant has decided to unleash an even smaller utility entry into the fray to try and steal precious sales from new rivals such as the Nissan Kicks, Ford EcoSport, and the Chevrolet Trax, the 2020 Hyundai Venue. When we last met the Venue, it was through several teaser images. However, Hyundai has finally pulled the veil off of its newest SUV offering. When we say the Venue is small, we’re not exaggerating, with …

Read more Hyundai’s Venue Brings Big Personality In Small But Tidy Package

2019 Acura ILX A-Spec – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Remember when Acura first launched? It may seem common now, but Honda was the first Japanese brand to bring in a luxury line – setting the path for Toyota’s Lexus and Nissan’s Infiniti. Mazda was dangerously close to bringing in the Amati line…but backed out. Still we owe props to Acura for being first, and the two first products, the Legend and the Integra were excellent, with all the Honda goodness, plus a nice layer of premium added on top. Acura kind of lost their way for a while – but as of late they’ve come back swinging. We recently …

Read more 2019 Acura ILX A-Spec – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Toyota Extends Hatchback Magic To Yaris Subcompact for 2020 Model Year

When Toyota recently launched the Corolla hatchback, we were pleased to see that the Japanese auto giant was still willing to give U.S. buyers a chance to own a tidy five door amid the relentless tidal wave of CUV and SUV demand that has already swallowed up other hatchback entries like the Focus and Fiesta. With the Corolla doing well in sales, Toyota has decided to extend the love to the smaller Yaris sedan, and has gifted the Mazda infused subcompact a hatchback variant of its own for 2020. Unlike the Corolla hatchback, the smaller Yaris is essentially a reskinned …

Read more Toyota Extends Hatchback Magic To Yaris Subcompact for 2020 Model Year

2019 Honda HR-V Sport AWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

We’ve tested Honda’s HR-V a while ago and found it surprisingly sporty and fun – especially when equipped in front-wheel-drive with a 6-speed manual transmission. So, when Honda announced a new HR-V Sport model for 2019 we were excited – in Europe, there’s an HR-V Sport with a manual transmission and the 1.5-liter turbo we get here in the Civic. This ain’t Europe. Unfortunately, we’re not getting that Sport. No turbo motor. And for 2019, the manual transmission is gone, too. Farewell… That said, our HR-V Sport gets some goodies unique to the model that should make it more fun …

Read more 2019 Honda HR-V Sport AWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2019 Hyundai Kona Electric – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

We just spent another week in Kona, and although we’re not tan, we can’t wait to go back. This is our second visit – after our first trip, we came back singing praises for its Island Style, the strong performance, and loads of equipment for the buck. And in many ways the Kona EV is even better. Slicker and Sleeker We loved the regular Kona’s style, and it had a tough, aggressive vibe to it. For the EV, Hyundai has decided to go a little more futuristic, a little more upscale. It starts with the grille. Well, it’s a grille …

Read more 2019 Hyundai Kona Electric – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2019 Toyota 86 GT 2

2019 Toyota 86 GT – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Someone said a bad thing. They said driving is on the way out. That people would rather Uber or Lyft than own a car of their own. That sports cars will be the first to go. Someone has not been in a Toyota 86. The Toyota 86 could be the ambassador for all things that car lovers love. And a little bit of time behind the wheel could convert a lot of skeptics too. Let the propaganda begin! Sports Car Ancestry.com The 86 is beautifully-designed. Time flies in auto-dom. When the 2013 FR-S appeared, it was a sensation – a …

Read more 2019 Toyota 86 GT – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

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Nissan Unveils Updated 2020 Rogue Sport

When Nissan first unveiled the Nissan Rogue Sport in the U.S. market, the repatriated and lightly tweaked CUV was supposed to give buyers a smaller option that would be much more compact than the Rogue, while also being a good companion for urban driving. The lone flaw was that the Rogue Sport looked a bit too much like its bigger brother the Rogue. Nissan has addressed this minor blemish, and unveiled the 2020 Nissan Rogue Sport alongside the Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek edition. Wheras the old model looked like a Rogue that went through the dryer one too many times, …

Read more Nissan Unveils Updated 2020 Rogue Sport

Road Test Review – 2018 Honda Pilot Elite – By Carl Malek

The race for supremacy in the mid-size SUV segment has never been as hotly contested as it has been over the past few years. A strong push in sales and a rapid shift in demand from U.S. customers has forced many automakers to step up their game in catering to the ever evolving needs of a new generation of families. But can even benchmark entries standout against a growing pool of mid-size SUV offerings? To find out, we spent some time with the 2018 Honda Pilot to see if this venerable Honda can still maintain its winning ways in this …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Honda Pilot Elite – By Carl Malek

Top 20 Reviews in 2018 – RDX Whistler Trip and MB Pebble Concept Top List

Ranked by traffic and readership! http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/06/01/2019-acura-rdx-a-spec/   http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/08/26/pebble-beach-2018-mercedes-benz-eq-silver-arrow-concept-by-james-crabtree/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/01/12/2018-vw-passat-se-2-0t-w-technology-road-test-review/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/10/12/2019-mazda6-turbo-road-test-review-by-ben-lewis/   http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/06/04/2018-volvo-xc60-t6-awd-inscription-road-test-review-by-ben-lewis/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/10/01/2018-lexus-ls500h-review-by-ben-lewis/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/01/20/2018-kia-stinger-gt1-rwd-v6tt-review-by-ben-lewis/     http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/06/25/2018-fiat-124-spider-abarth-road-test-review-by-ben-lewis/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/07/03/2018-audi-q5-2-0t-quattro-s-tronic-road-test-review-by-ben-lewis/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/06/20/road-test-review-2018-maserati-levante-sq4-by-carl-malek/     http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/06/29/road-test-review-2018-rolls-royce-wraith-black-badge-by-carl-malek/   http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/08/21/2018-lexus-gs350-f-sport-rwd-road-test-review-by-tom-burkart/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/12/04/2018-toyota-camry-xse-v6-review/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/02/25/2018-nissan-armada-platinum-4wd-road-test-review-ben-lewis/   http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/07/27/2018-nissan-gtr50-concept-by-italdesign-goodwood-fos-2018-debut/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/08/31/2019-toyota-avalon-touring-road-test-review-by-ben-lewis/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/04/09/2018-honda-accord-touring-2-0t-road-test-review-by-ben-lewis/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/03/19/2018-vw-atlas-v6-sel-premium-w-4motion-road-test-review-video/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/10/16/road-test-review-2018-audi-tt-rs-by-carl-malek/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/07/23/2018-hyundai-kona-ultimate-fwd-road-test-review-by-ben-lewis/ http://www.car-revs-daily.com/2018/07/20/2018-mazda-mx-5-miata-rf-grand-touring-road-test-review-by-ben-lewis/  

2018 Honda CR-V 1.5T AWD Touring – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

It’s amazing how time flies in the auto industry. Especially in the compact SUV segment. We tested the all-new 2017 CR-V less than a year ago, but it’s got loads of competitors nibbling at its heels, from an all-new Subaru Forester, Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross and Toyota RAV4 plus a heavily-revised Jeep Cherokee. And don’t forget the Nissan Rogue Sport, Hyundai Kona and other ilk, that are a little smaller, but still in the hunt. How you holdin’ up? Being such a competitive segment, most manufacturers seem willing to be more expressive in their styling – you don’t want to be …

Read more 2018 Honda CR-V 1.5T AWD Touring – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2019 Subaru ASCENT Premium – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

We’ve always admired that Subaru stays true to its roots. A clever mix of marketing and engineering makes Subie owners set apart from the crowd. And in an age where so many brands seem to offer similar products, that difference is a fresh and welcome breeze. That said, Subaru doesn’t operate in a vacuum – they have to offer vehicles that buyers want. A perfect example is the 3-row crossover. Right now, that 7-passenger capability is a hot ticket, and we’ve seen everything from the new VW Tiguan to Kia Sorento stepping up to snag a bite of that apple. …

Read more 2019 Subaru ASCENT Premium – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Toyota Considers Axing Slow Selling Models Amid Uncertain Economic Future

With the trade war between the U.S. and China still squeezing the broader economy as a whole, the resulting pressure has forced automakers to prepare for a possible weakening in the global market scene. General Motors recently offered some of its salaried employees buyouts, and amid the cloud of uncertainty generated by this move, it appears things have shifted into another gear, with Toyota perhaps axing dead weight from its U.S. model lineup.   While crucial nameplates such as the Camry, Avalon, and RAV4 will avoid the gulliotine thanks to their high sales figures, and their impressive reputations among various …

Read more Toyota Considers Axing Slow Selling Models Amid Uncertain Economic Future

Road Test Review – 2018 Kia Niro Touring – By Carl Malek

When we last met the Kia Niro in Metro Detroit, it was back in 2017, in its base EX trim which aimed to not only deliver buyers a compelling CUV in a rapidly growing segment of the marketplace, but also the hybrid fueled efficency that is a key draw for green minded buyers. While it certainly suceeded in delivering on both of these fronts, it lacked the style and aesthetic flair to truly stand out against segment rivals. Kia aims to solve this problem with the Touring model, but does the Touring have what it takes to inject some much …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Kia Niro Touring – By Carl Malek

2019 Kia Sorento SXL AWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

We’re suckers for a good ad campaign. And when we saw the new Kia Sorento ad, with it climbing a heinous off-road course at Hell’s Gate, Moab, Utah, we thought – “hey, we haven’t been in a Sorento in a while”. Time to make that right. Well, it’s a perfect time to test the ’19 Sorento, as it features some significant upgrades that take this likable 3-row crossover a step up in the desirability department. Devilishly Handsome. The Sorento has always been a good-looking piece, with an upscale-vibe and a rugged square-shouldered look. Its last complete redesign was in 2016.  …

Read more 2019 Kia Sorento SXL AWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2018 Kia Sportage SX Turbo AWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Welcome to the jungle.    Not the Amazon – we mean the compact SUV market. But it’s almost as treacherous –  while you won’t find Piranha, you’ll find every car maker worth their salt constantly biting at each other for that big, delicious share of the hottest segment in the marketplace. Your guide today through this land of hungry hippos is the 2018 Kia Sportage. In these treacherous waters, it’s good to have experience on your side, and the Sportage is tried and trusted. In our previous test, we loved the performance, quality, features and style. But that was almost …

Read more 2018 Kia Sportage SX Turbo AWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2019 VW Jetta 2

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

We recently tested the 2018 VW Passat GT, an exciting twist on one of the carmaker’s oldest models. And now, we have the 2019 VW Jetta, its newest model. And make no mistake about it, a new Jetta is a big deal. It’s the most successful European nameplate in the US, with 3.2 million sold since 1980. And, that’s just a drop in the bucket – worldwide sales are over 17.5 million. Now we have the seventh-generation of the popular sedan, and VW has pushed the envelope to give us a bigger, better, more advanced sedan to continue to woo …

Read more 2019 VW Jetta SE – 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

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2018 SALAFF C2 Supercar Concept – Best of Pebble Beach – 30-Photo Gallery

Very rare double best-of winner for the Concept Lawn of 2018 Pebble Beach Concours! The Salaff C2 wins most arresting face by a mile, and also scores wildest concept tail! Very fantastic design ideas virtually pouring from all the C2’s aggressive cutlines. Carlos Salaff is already a favorite designer for many car buffs.  He is the man behind the ill-fated Mazda Furai concept, which was a 450HP rotary LMP2 racecar as well as 2040 design preview. This latest exercise is a grass-roots, hand-crafted effort from the artist’s base in Italy.  Humble-ish underpinnings from a Gallardo do nothing to tamp my …

Read more 2018 SALAFF C2 Supercar Concept – Best of Pebble Beach – 30-Photo Gallery

Road Test Review – 2018 Kia Rio EX – By Carl Malek

In a world where pickup trucks, SUVs, and crossovers have become the dominant players in the quest for supremacy, it is easy to forget that the sub-compact segment is still a vital battlefield for automakers. lWhile the subcompact range has undergone some shrinkage recently, there are still a diverse cast of entries vying for buyer attention. One of these is the 2018 Kia Rio, which aims to bring some youthful vibes and sensible frugality into Kia’s rapidly changing lineup of cars. But can the Rio take advantage of the impending departure of the benchmark Ford Fiesta, and steal some extra …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Kia Rio EX – By Carl Malek

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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

2018 Hyundai KONA Ultimate FWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

We recently tested the Hyundai Elantra sedan and Elantra GT hatchback, which we really liked. We even mentioned the GT Hatch might be an excellent alternative to a small crossover. And then Hyundai introduces the all-new Kona compact crossover – and makes liars out of us. Well, maybe not liars. There’s a lot to like about the Elantra GT, but after our time in the Kona, we’re ready to go Island time, full time. (Kona, Hawaii reference for those playing at home). We do it Island Style Let’s start with the looks. The Kona is one great-looking small CUV, with …

Read more 2018 Hyundai KONA Ultimate FWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2018 Hyundai Elantra Limited – Road Test Review – by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the Elantra GT hatchback and found it to be a fun and flexible small hatch – one that might be better for some buyers than a crossover or SUV. And while those vehicles seem to be getting the lion’s share of sales, along with small hatchbacks, there’s still a need in the marketplace for the small sedan. There’s always a sweet spot for cars like the Corolla, Civic and our tester, the Elantra sedan. They make great first cars for new drivers, great second cars for families, and comfortable and reliable transportation for older buyers, too. The …

Read more 2018 Hyundai Elantra Limited – Road Test Review – by Ben Lewis

2018 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

As we write this, it’s the Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year. Perfect time to review a roadster, then. And on such a noteworthy day, the 124 Spider Abarth seems like the ideal car for celebrating. Brio! Translated from Italian, it means vigor, vivacity. And the Fiat serves this up, with a fun to drive personality, stunning looks, and intangibles that just feel so European…which is pretty interesting when you consider, the 124 is mostly Japanese. Underneath the swanky Italian bodywork is a Miata. But before we delve under the body, let’s linger on the handsome suit draping …

Read more 2018 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Road Test Review – 2018 Toyota C-HR XLE – By Carl Malek

The legacy of Scion still continues to permeate throughout Toyota’s current lineup. The brand once known for its youthful swagger had a proverbial ace in the hole before Toyota pulled the plug several years ago. But can the newly rechristened Toyota CH-R hold its own in an increasingly crowded marketplace? or is it too little too late for a CUV that was supposed to be the shining star of a defunct past? The exterior styling of our tester certainly drew plenty of stares when viewed in the flesh. There’s alot going on in this busy canvas, and it all starts …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Toyota C-HR XLE – By Carl Malek

2018 Hyundai Elantra GT A/T – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

One of the great things about the popularity of small SUV’s and Crossovers is that it’s also creating renewed interest in small wagons and hatchbacks too. Once you’ve experienced the practicality of RAV4 or HR-V, it’s pretty hard to go back to a small sedan. So, don’t go back to a small sedan. With the all-new 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT, you get carrying capacity – plus a whole lot of other nice surprises. And even if comes down to choosing between an Elantra sedan and GT hatchback, it’s no contest – hatch wins. Euro style. It starts with the looks …

Read more 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT A/T – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2018 Buick Encore Premium FWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

We recently tested the new Buick Enclave, and found it to be an excellent blend of style, performance and luxury. What if you want all that, but something in a smaller package, perfect for running around the city as well as the open road? Well then, how about the Buick Encore?  Refreshed in 2017, the small SUV has proven to be exceptionally popular – it’s Buick best-selling model – and it shows how quickly the brand has moved from stodgy to hip and cool in a short time. Not the urban lumberjack, Jack. In the land of small SUV’s trying …

Read more 2018 Buick Encore Premium FWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

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2018 Subaru Crosstrek 2.0i Premium – Road Test Review

Subaru refreshed its Outback Jr for the 2018 model year with a bump in horsepower and fresh LEDs on the top trims.  New cabin tech and the slightest of slight design upgrade to detailing outside and in completed the refresh. Most notably, the top Crosstreks now have a sexy LED DRL that comes standard with the upgraded bi-xenon, auto-highbeam cornering lamps on the Crosstrek Limited. Humbler trims like our 2.0i Premium tester have to make do another year with bulb DRLs and a decidedly dowdy look on the road. No LEDs in front for this trim but some searingly-bright LED …

Read more 2018 Subaru Crosstrek 2.0i Premium – Road Test Review

Road Test Review – 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT – By Carl Malek

Hatchbacks have always been a unique breed of automobile. A feisty blend of utility and performance, they have survived the original SUV craze, and have so far held their own against the current crush of CUVs, and the massive pressure they have wrought on other segments of the automotive market including hatchbacks. But amid the current crop of hatchback offerings, is there one that can usurp the current king of the hatchback, the Volkswagen Golf/GTI? Or could an upstart make its way through the ranks and pull off a monumental upset?   This is not our first encounter with the …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT – By Carl Malek

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

Mitsuoka Motors Unveils MX-5 Based Himiko Roadster

When it comes to creating weird vehicles that even make vintage Rinspeed vehicles look tame, no company can beat the folks at Mitsuoka Motors. This small Japanese car company has a long history of grafting unique bodywork onto existing models, and it has unveiled its latest creation, the Himiko roadster. Like other Mitsuoka models, the Himiko is based on a current production model, in this case the Mazda MX-5. Unlike the standard MX-5 which looks at home in a Japanese manga series, the Himiko goes for a decidedly more retro presentation, and the end result is a distinctive, albeit love …

Read more Mitsuoka Motors Unveils MX-5 Based Himiko Roadster

2018 Volkswagen Atlas V6 4Motion – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

If you go by sales, VW SUVs have always been the scrawny kid on the beach getting sand kicked in his face. But, as if answering one of those mail-order bodybuilding courses, a new, big, powerful and buff VW Atlas is giving those other bullies a roundhouse to the jaw, and claiming its rightful place in the sun. Behold: the VW Atlas. Or as we named out tester, Charles Atlas. If you don’t remember Charles Atlas, you can still appreciate that the U.S. is big SUV country, and up until now VW hasn’t really courted the buyer who needs three …

Read more 2018 Volkswagen Atlas V6 4Motion – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2018 VW Passat SE 2.0T w/ Technology – Road Test Review

The USA-made and optimized Passat is now in its second generation on American roads.  The refresh for 2016 brought optional LEDs that are Audi-tastic, new infotainment tech and a few other tweaks. For 2018, Passat gains an all-new 2.0T engine as standard versus the 1.8-liter turbo from the previous four-cylinder models.  The extra pony count is pretty modest – just four extra for a total of 174. As ever, VW’s turbo models punch above their stats when it comes to real-world pace.  This motor is no different – and cuts the sprint time to 60-mph down to one of the …

Read more 2018 VW Passat SE 2.0T w/ Technology – Road Test Review

2018 Hyundai Sonata 2_9

2018 Hyundai Sonata 2.4L Limited – Road Test Review

Not everyone drives their car like an escaped felon. More accurately, the vast majority of midsize sedan shoppers have little to no interest in 0-60-mph times, lateral grip or brake feel. These concerns are just totally alien to their transportation needs. Your average midsize sedan buyer wants tons of cabin space, low monthly payments and easy-to-operate tech features. So why drive like a madman? We took a relaxed, more realistic, approach to this Sonata Limited review.  The video is thick with minutes and minutes of walk-arounds inside and out; back seat and front.  Totally sedate throttle inputs – enjoying the …

Read more 2018 Hyundai Sonata 2.4L Limited – Road Test Review

Road Test Review – 2017 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited AWD – By Carl Malek

With ample cargo room, a healthy suite of features, as well as purposeful styling, it’s no secret that the 2017 Toyota Highlander has emerged as a key family focused entry for the Japanese auto giant. When we last met the Highlander, we gave it high marks for interior room, and the flexibility provided by its sizable cargo area. However, a key weakness that emerged during that encounter was the Highlander’s low fuel mileage. Toyota aimed to try and correct this flaw with the 2017 Toyota Highlander Hybrid, but does it stand out as a must have option for Highlander fans? …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited AWD – By Carl Malek

2017 Nissan ROGUE SPORT SV AWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Over the years there have been plenty of words used to keep certain brand names high on the sales charts, and to use the halo of well-earned reputations to promote the latest and greatest. Think Grand Cherokee, Camry Solara, Mustang II. Some more successful than others. And now we have a spinoff of Nissan’s exceptionally popular Rogue. The Nissan Rogue Sport. What’s up, Sport? Sport fits the smaller, more aggressive looking Rogue, being a good foot shorter than its big brother. Designed to compete against such city funsters as Mazda’s CX-3, Honda HR-V, and Toyota’s CH-R, it’s still a handy …

Read more 2017 Nissan ROGUE SPORT SV AWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Road Test Review – 2017 Kia Soul Turbo – By Carl Malek

In a world where CUVs are slowly becoming the dominant species in the automotive world, one particular entry has always stood out for offering a unique yet successful approach to this often rehashed segment of the market, the Kia Soul. The Soul arrived when boxy was in, and it competed with mainly with its equally square counterparts the Nissan Cube, and the Scion xB. Both the Cube and the xB have entered automotive retirement, but the Soul has managed to soldier on, and transform itself into a solid competitor for a new wave of CUV entries. But can a dash …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Kia Soul Turbo – By Carl Malek

2017 Toyota Yaris iA – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

While it’s great to test the latest hi-tech, hi-buck vehicles, we really enjoy when a manufacturer makes an inexpensive car something special. Especially when it’s not only good, but also a surprisingly good drive.  And this is one of those vehicles. Yaris, I am your father… OK, the Yaris has a confused parentage going on here. Until last year, the iA was a Scion. And when Toyota got rid of that brand, it adopted the little sedan. Hence the funny iA name – clearly a remnant from Scion. But of course, that’s only half the story, because the iA is actually …

Read more 2017 Toyota Yaris iA – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

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 …

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2018 Hyundai Elantra GT Base Automatic – Road Test Review + 2 Videos

There are cars that are simply better than they have to be. They go beyond just beating their obvious rivals and into another level of long-term partnership potential for their drivers. Such is the case with the five-door Hyundai Elantra GT.  This variant of the best-selling sedan shares much of its drivetrain cabin, but none of its exterior or platform design. It enters a market segment that has more strong rivals than ever.  Focus and Cruze hatchback might be easy to beat.  But how about the new Civic Sport 5-door, Mazda3 and VW Golf?  Those are some seriously good global …

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2018 Toyota Camry XSE V6 – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

We like cars that shake things up. That take what you thought you knew, and lead you in a whole new direction. One of the biggest surprises this year is Toyota’s venerable family sedan. From the sharp creased lines, to the sharply-creased performance, it’s got a lot of people asking the same question. That’s a Camry? Yep. But first, some housekeeping. The rumor of the family sedan being dead is a bit overstated. Yes, crossovers are big business, but there are a lot of buyers out there who are just as happy with a solid, sensible, four-door sedan. And they …

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2017 TOKYO Motor Show LIVE – Top Ten Sexiest Debuts

Tokyo is full of EVs and stand-tall vans per usual.  But this year the eco flavor has a lot more speed and outdoorsiness.  Cars like the Nissan IMx — a preview of a Juke replacement running 400+ electric ponies.  Taller ride height and gravel-busting looks are part of the Subaru VISIV concept’s rallytough looks. We even love the new Mitsubishi Mazda is on a roll with its gorgeous Vision Coupe concept — a light teaser of where the humble Mazda6 is going in the future.  Same for the sexy shrink-wrapped KAI Concept for its 2019 Mazda3 flavors. Cars like the …

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2018 Nissan 370Z Roadster Touring Sport 7 A/T – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Although summer is a memory in the rearview mirror for most of us, there’s still plenty of time to enjoy a roadster – in fact, cooler weather and leaves changing color make fall one of the joys of owning a drop top. And if you’re looking for joy in a roadster, look here. The 370Z is getting to be a senior citizen in the sports car world. The coupe appearing in 2009, the roadster in 2010. Mind you, there have been updates, including a facelift – but the basic vehicle is pretty much the same, even as its approaching it’s …

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2017 Jannarelly Design-1 Heads to First Owners!

A great startup launch story for Jannarelly Automotive this year.  From prototype to production in just a matter of months is a huge achievement. The first ever JD1 is now in its happy owners hands in France, but the second is headed to NY!  The US distributor Vandouble is handling orders for the machines stateside, with around a six-month delivery timeframe.  Production is sold out until February 2018, Jannarelly tells us, so get your order in soon to be among the first owners. As a recap, we have a mid-mounted V6 driving the back wheels and flyweight carbon construction to make the …

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2018 Toyota C-HR – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

There’s a lot of talk lately that the small car is on its last legs. And you-know-who is to blame…the crossover. It started quite a while ago with SUVs swaying the public, with their rugged looks, great versatility, and comfy, tall seating position. Then came the small SUV wave, and it’s become a Tsunami – the Nissan Rogue is currently the best selling non-pickup vehicle (full-size pickups are still big business) in the country, with a passel of CR-V’s, RAV4’s, and CX-5’s and more not far behind. Still, the smallest of the small cars felt safe until recently, when the …

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2017 Polaris Slingshot SL – First Drive Review – By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman  

Taking a ride out to Nielsen Enterprises, in Lake Villa, IL is always a treat. They’re the ultimate big boy toy store.  You can buy anything from ATV’s, UTV’s personal watercraft, snowmobiles, all four Japanese motorcycle brands, Can-AM Spyders, and Polaris products. If it’s fun, and it goes fast, Nielsen’s got it. Today’s mission is to take a Polaris Slingshot out for a test and find out why they can’t make them fast enough. The Slingshot is a three-wheel vehicle, with two wheels in front, and a single wheel in back.  It is 150” long, which is 4” shorter than …

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2017 Toyota Corolla iM – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Would a Scion by any other name smell as sweet? In case you missed the press release, Toyota folded up the hip- and hip-hop Scion brand recently, and moved everything over to the Toyota brand. Scion-ara!  In 2003, it was a bold experiment, Scion creating a brand that spoke to youth, attracting new buyers to the Toyota family. And it worked for a while. The problem was, not only the young wanted a less-expensive, but hip Toyota. Case in point; the super-funky xB box was a big hit with the kids, but also found a surprising home with seniors – …

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2017 Fiat 124 Spider EXTERIOR 15

2017 FIAT 124 Spider – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

  No spoiler alert needed: The Fiat 124 Spider is built on the all-new Miata. But don’t dismiss it as a Japanese sports car – and an excellent one at that – trying to pull a fast one by donning an Armani suit. It’s surprisingly different from Mazda. Let’s start with style, ok? Per favore! When the new Miata debuted, it was a surprise, the previous generations felt like organic developments of the same design, with a lot of thanks owed to the original Lotus Elan, if you ask us. But when the new model saw daylight, it was noticeably …

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