Twin Test: 2020 Hyundai Kona Turbo FWD – Cheaper, But Much Less Grip

In the first part of this twin test we crowned the Kona Turbo AWD a best-of-2020 winner and clearly the superior Kona Turbo for performance enthusiasts.  This segment takes a look at what the differences are via a drive review and a new photoset of the 2020 Kona 1.6T front-wheel-drive. The upcoming Kona N performance model makes perfect sense to anyone who has driven the turbo version of these cars.  (The base Kona trims have significantly worse more affordable mechanicals beyond the engine so the boosted upgrade is very worthwhile.) But once you have sprung for the turbo, should you …

Read more Twin Test: 2020 Hyundai Kona Turbo FWD – Cheaper, But Much Less Grip

Twin Test: Hyundai Kona Turbo AWD – Brilliant Speed, Grip & Handling

Testing two cars in different trim and powertrains is often pretty dull with the same conclusions applying to both vehicles. Not in this case. For enthusiasts, the AWD is the clear favorite. The bar is extra high for these small Hyundais since experiencing the pure driving joy that is the Veloster N.  The bar is raised high by that giggly pocket rocket — so its extra admirable that Kona is in same ballpark. The top Hyundai Kona trims both run the 1.6T and double-clutch automatic but differ in their drivetrains and rear suspensions.  The AWD is the clear winner on …

Read more Twin Test: Hyundai Kona Turbo AWD – Brilliant Speed, Grip & Handling

2020 Hyundai Palisade SEL FWD Review by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the all-new Kia Telluride, and came away mightily impressed. So, we couldn’t wait to try its sibling, the Hyundai Palisade. We were surprised in a couple ways. They’re very different, and yet both deserve your consideration. And Hyundai’s flagship SUV even has a surprising accent. (Not to be confused with the Hyundai Accent) Swedish Fish Many times we’ve pointed out that Kia design feels very European, thanks in part to putting Peter Schreyer the head of Audi design in charge. Hyundai has never felt that way, until now. Well, except for the front. Here we have a …

Read more 2020 Hyundai Palisade SEL FWD Review by Ben Lewis

IMG_8067

2019 Buick Enclave Premium FWD – Review by Ben Lewis

We recently tested the Buick Regal TourX and concluded that it’s a sweet sport wagon – and not the big and friendly family Roadmaster wagon of day’s past. What if a big comfy wagon is what you’re looking for? As we like to say, step right this way, to the 2019 Buick Enclave. While the wagon market is rapidly shrinking, the crossover segment is going like gangbusters. And for the family with places to go, the three-row Buick is a great way to get there. Sleek 7-seater If you’re hoping for slabs of plasticized pine, you’ll be disappointed here. On …

Read more 2019 Buick Enclave Premium FWD – 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

2018 VW Tiguan S 2.0T FWD 7 Seater – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

We recently tested the new Mini Countryman, and determined that while it’s the largest Mini yet, it still is Mini, in brand and spirit. So, now we have the all-new 2018 VW Tiguan, a big step forward in size over the previous model. Big enough to squeeze in a 3rd row of seats. But it leaves us wondering: Has the Tiguan gotten too big for its britches? One look and you know the new Tiguan is shopping at the big and tall SUV store. 10.6 inches longer, and riding on a wheelbase 7.3 longer, it’s not only a much larger …

Read more 2018 VW Tiguan S 2.0T FWD 7 Seater – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2017 GMC Acadia Exteior Photos 12

2017 GMC Acadia SLT-1 FWD – HD Road Test Review

You know the shorthand details on the all-new 2017 Acadia from GMC:  it is 700-pounds lighter and overall far more carlike than its predecessor. While still seating six or seven with its three-row seating. Another few changes slipped out of the big news, though: the Acadia is gorgeous now, and runs a gorgeous 26-mpg highway via its standard front-drive, four-cylinder power. This is pretty huge news versus the Acadia’s at the top of the range with their big V6 engine and ubiquiotus AWD and huge wheels.  A rarity in the car-reviews business, then. We have ourselves an entry-level model to …

Read more 2017 GMC Acadia SLT-1 FWD – HD Road Test Review

2017 Ford ESCAPE Titanium FWD – Road Test Review – By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman

A third of the auto industry’s sales last year were SUV’s. That means that about 5 million of them were sold here.  At Ford, their leading SUV model is the Escape. Over 300,000 units were sold last year alone, making the Escape the number 2 selling Ford model, behind only the Ford F-150 pickup truck.  The Escape debuted way back in the year 2000, and they have sold more than 2.4 million of them.  After spending a week with the 2017 Escape, it’s not hard to understand why. For 2017, the Escape gets a mid-cycle refresh, bringing some significant changes to the …

Read more 2017 Ford ESCAPE Titanium FWD – Road Test Review – By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman

2017 Kia Sportage SX Turbo 2.OL FWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

  If you’ve read our other tests of Kia vehicles, you might remember that we’ve been noticing a distinctively German feel to these Korean Vehicles, much of it owing to the stewardship of Kia/Hyundai Honcho Peter Schreyer, who previously penned much of Audi’s goodness. When we tested the Kia Optima SX we found loads of Audi-ness in the overall feel of the car. And now with the all-new Sportage SUV, we’re tasting hints of Porsche and BMW in the mix as well. Has Kia created the Korean Kayenne? Well, from first glance, it will definitely catch Stuttgart’s attention. And a …

Read more 2017 Kia Sportage SX Turbo 2.OL FWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis