Road Test Review – 2019 Hyundai Accent Limited – By Carl Malek

When the Hyundai Accent first appeared on the scene back in 1994, it was known more so for its rock bottom price point versus being an exceptionally good long term value. While it undercut many econoboxes at the time, owners paid a price for this by having to deal with middling engines that delivered ho hum performance, and a plastic fantastic interior that would make a Chevrolet Cavalier blush with envy. But with budget focused CUVs representing a very real threat to the Accent’s existence, Hyundai had to completely revamp the Accent to not only be a mere darling to …

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2020 Subaru Outback Limited – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

If there’s a company that epitomizes the “You Don’t Mess with Success” mantra, it’s Subaru. You rarely get a revolutionary, all-new, blow-your-mind model from the automaker. And we’re fine with that. Everything’s so good already, they prefer to perfect what they got. Introducing the all-new 2020 Outback! You didn’t notice? Well, it does look very familiar to anyone who has loved the previous five generations of Subie’s tall wagon. The size is about the same – 1.4” longer and 0.6 wider than the previous model. The lines look a bit crisper, with a large hexagonal grille, LED fogs and front …

Read more 2020 Subaru Outback Limited – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

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 …

Read more 2019 Toyota RAV4 Limited – Review By Ben Lewis

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 …

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

2019 Ford F-150 Limited – Road Test & Towing Review – By Matt Barnes

With the intense pickup truck wars in full effect right now, manufacturers are offering more luxury and ease-of-use features than ever before. Coming in at the very top of Ford’s F-150 lineup is the new Limited model. Recently, Ford sent us an F-150 Limited for review and we found that there were only six added options. Nearly every other conceivable feature is standard equipment. The Limited model is only available in the Super Crew 5.5 ft. bed configuration. It comes with so many features on the interior that there are few things that can be optioned. On the inside, our …

Read more 2019 Ford F-150 Limited – Road Test & Towing Review – By Matt Barnes

2019 Toyota Prius Limited – Review by Ben Lewis

It’s tough being at the top. Take the Prius for example. I mean, it pretty much invented the hybrid category. And it bore the brunt of a lot criticism early on. But it emerged. Not only unscathed, but look at how many Hybrid models are for sale now. Toyota alone offers a Camry, Corolla, Avalon, RAV4, Highlander, Prius, Prius Prime and Prius C models. All Hybrids! That’s quite a lineup, and as the pater familias (father of the family) of this clan of efficiency, Toyota has to make sure that it stays relevant and attractive. So, for 2019, The Prius …

Read more 2019 Toyota Prius Limited – Review by Ben Lewis

2019 Toyota Tacoma Limited – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

In these trying times of scandals, political tensions, and my sports teams not doing much, it’s hard to keep the faith. But there’s one place that’s earned your trust for decades, and continues to do so. The Toyota Tacoma – an honest truck. Tough yet Approachable Along with the Toyota 4Runner, The Tacoma is an old friend. It’s been with us since 1995, and that’s building on a heritage of incredibly durable Toyota pickups that started here in the U.S. in 1969. And here in California, where the weather is kind, you still see plenty of 70’s and 80’s trucks …

Read more 2019 Toyota Tacoma Limited – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2019 Subaru Forester Limited – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Subaru owners are faithful. To the vehicles, to the brand, to the ethos. It keeps owners in the fold, and attracts new buyers in big numbers. Like the Prius, Tesla, Jeep and others, people like a brand or model that stands for something. So, you don’t go messing with success. Familiar lines Now that we have an all-new, 5th –generation Forester for 2019, it’s not a big shocker that this model is evolutionary, rather than revolutionary. Which is okay, since there wasn’t anything wrong with the previous model. You might have trouble picking the new one out, so here’s some …

Read more 2019 Subaru Forester Limited – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Battle of the 2019 Jeep Cherokees – Trailhawk Vs Limited – By Matt Barnes

A few months, back we had the chance to test drive the 2019 Jeep Cherokee Limited. We really enjoyed our time with the vehicle and you can read about it here. Recently, Jeep sent us the Trailhawk version of the 2019 Jeep Cherokee, with the same 3.2 liter V6 and 9 speed automatic transmission. This gave us a good opportunity to compare the two similarly equipped vehicles, costing within $200 of each other. Similarities Both 2019 Cherokees we tested came with: Adaptive cruise control Lane keep assist 9 speaker audio system with the 8.4 inch Uconnect and GPS setup Leather …

Read more Battle of the 2019 Jeep Cherokees – Trailhawk Vs Limited – By Matt Barnes

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

2019 Jeep Cherokee Limited 4×4 – Road Test Review – By Matt Barnes

When looking at the new 2019 Jeep Cherokee, one may wonder how a solid axle XJ from a few decades ago has evolved into a smooth-riding, fully independent suspension and a seemingly less off road capable vehicle. From our experience, the new Cherokee is much better on road and is every bit as capable and possibly even more capable than its predecessor. Exterior For 2019, the Jeep Cherokee has a few exterior updates that are different from the 2018 model, making it more attractive and lighter. The bumpers, LED head lights, LED tail lights, hood and liftgate have all been …

Read more 2019 Jeep Cherokee Limited 4×4 – Road Test Review – By Matt Barnes

2018 RAM 2500 Limited 4×4 Long Box – Road Test Review – By Matt Barnes

When thinking of an HD pickup truck, the first things that come to mind are diesel power and a terrible ride. Only one of those two things is true with the 2018 Ram 2500 Limited Crew Cab 4×4 Long Box. Our test vehicle came with a lot of upgrades and packages, making it one of the most comfortable three-quarter ton trucks we have ever driven. Exterior This was an attractive truck from nearly any angle. It really stood out from all the other vehicles around it due to its enormous size and alluring deep indigo red paint. The Limited Tungsten …

Read more 2018 RAM 2500 Limited 4×4 Long Box – Road Test Review – By Matt Barnes

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

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2018 Hyundai Sonata Limited 2.0T – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Have you noticed this great resurgence in family sedans lately? The all-new Accord and Camrys that we’ve tested are really pushing the limits of design, performance and technology – fighting back against the rising tides of crossovers and suvs. And who do we have to thank for the sedan revival?  Hyundai. A few years back, it seemed like the sedan had settled in for a nice long snooze, content to be shopped by those who wanted 4 doors and a trunk – but not interested in grabbing customers by the collar and saying “Hey check me out”. At the same …

Read more 2018 Hyundai Sonata Limited 2.0T – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2018 Hyundai Santa Fe Ultimate LWB – Road Test Review

There should be a Buzzfeed-style online quiz for SUV and crossover shoppers.  “How big an SUV do you really need?” You see, once the idea of a three-row truck enters some family minds, they go haywire and right to the extreme of a Tahoe or Land Cruiser-size vehicle.  Without thinking for a minute if one of these goliaths is actually the right vehicle.  Don’t spend years having trouble parking your big-rig and gassing up constantly. If you answer No to very-heavy Towing, keep going to the car-based, mid-size crossover category. If you value ultra-modern LED lighting and tech, carry on. …

Read more 2018 Hyundai Santa Fe Ultimate LWB – Road Test Review

2017 Toyota AVALON Hybrid Limited – Road Test Review – By Tim Esterdahl

The 2017 Toyota Avalon Hybrid Limited is a very stylish car loaded with safety equipment and great fuel economy. It’s only blemish is simply bad timing with the ultra-hot truck and SUV market seeing customers buying other types of vehicles at a startling pace. After receiving a facelift in 2015 and now with a new 2019 model on the way, the 2017 model should represent a bargain for consumers. Here’s why. On the outside, the Avalon represents the older way of designing Toyota vehicles with a more muted front-end and blended style from front to rear. Newer Toyota styling has …

Read more 2017 Toyota AVALON Hybrid Limited – Road Test Review – By Tim Esterdahl

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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

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2018 Hyundai SONATA Limited 2.0T – Road Test Review w/ Video!

The 2018 Sonata is quite a looker on the roads!  There is no lag time in the Genesis G80 Sport’s design trickle-down: both wear very similar shield grilles, darkened with glossy mesh and black chrome for a sinister and sexy style. Usually it takes a few years for the 7 series M Sport style to make it to a 3 series (for example), so Hyundai is definitely plugged into style trends. This review comes from a man whose middle name might be Sonata this fall.  We started with the Sport 2.0T and now are in the Limited 2.0T, which has …

Read more 2018 Hyundai SONATA Limited 2.0T – Road Test Review w/ Video!

2017 Jeep Compass 4×4 Limited – HD Road Test Review

Guess who does not love compact crossovers, generally, for their woeful speed and handling?  This guy. So the 2017 Compass really had its work cut out for it when it came to CRD for a review.  We were pre-biased and would’ve been tossed from a jury trial for inability to be impartial. Our personal disdain for micro-SUVs is dead wrong based on vehicle sales charts, though. Mini crossovers are the hottest segment of the car business these days.  They are replacing huge chunks of traditional compact and midsize car sales – through their combination of coolness and capability. Jeep is …

Read more 2017 Jeep Compass 4×4 Limited – HD Road Test Review

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VIDEO – 2017 Jeep Compass Limited 4×4 Finds Bomb-Crater Lake

    How awful are those posts on sites that just open to a video.  No words really, just a giant play button.  And you never really want to watch the video that second, right? We try to spare you those posts here.  But there are exceptions. When a video production approaches true The Grand Tour production values.  When a drone-cam tracks your Jeep romping in tall grass and from over water.  When dual GoPro’s with different cabin angles was ridiculous but still tolerated by the talent. When you’ve found a peachy dirt road to mimic rally speeds around corners — tail …

Read more VIDEO – 2017 Jeep Compass Limited 4×4 Finds Bomb-Crater Lake

2017 Toyota 4Runner Limited 4×4 – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

A long time ago, the SUV was a truck. In fact, many of our SUV-owning friends used to call them trucks. It was a badge of pride. Tough, no-nonsense. Go anywhere. The anti-Minivan in every sense of the word. But we got seduced. Today, nearly everyone wants car-like comfort, luxuries, swank styling. Rugged capability? Who cares. Well, if you’ve seen the weather lately, or watch the hot TV shows, you know, it might not be such a bad idea to have a little go-anywhere in your garage. Which leads us to today’s question: What vehicle do you want when the …

Read more 2017 Toyota 4Runner Limited 4×4 – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

2018 Subaru Impreza 2.0i Limited Sedan – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

When people ask us what’s “in” this year, we have an answer: Premium. It seems like these things cycle through. One year, it’s performance, the next – gadgets. Safety and autonomous tech are going to be with us now for the foreseeable future. But this year – especially in smaller vehicles – carmakers are pumping up the quietness, the tech, and the high quality goods. And with so many buyers fleeing to small crossovers, this makes sense. If you can’t compete with the versatility, you compete with feel-good of an upscale drive. And next in line for the primo treatment …

Read more 2018 Subaru Impreza 2.0i Limited Sedan – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

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2017 KIA Cadenza Limited – Road Test Review + 2 Videos

There is real buzz around the brand-new 2017 Kia Cadenza. Car reviewers near and far have been shocked by its lux feel and right-priced tech. Are they right? We spent a week in the loaded Cadenza Limited to find out.  Hard on throttle and chucking it around corners… and honestly expecting the worst.  After all, it is a hard time for near-luxury sedans.  Cars like the Maxima, Avalon, Lacrosse or Chrysler 300 are suffering from low sales and a crowded marketplace.  Meanwhile, the deeply unfun Lexus ES still hoovers up sales for reasons no one truly understands. How can Cadenza …

Read more 2017 KIA Cadenza Limited – Road Test Review + 2 Videos

2017 Hyundai Elantra Limited – Road Test Review – By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman

For 2017 Hyundai introduces their 6th generation Elantra, and it’s destined to be a big hit.  Gone is last year’s brash, in-your-face design that separated it styling-wise from the more bland competitors in this compact car segment. Now we have an emphasis on a more elegant shape, and sophisticated style, and that sophistication is evident throughout the cabin and in the entire feel of this new model. Boomerang-shaped LED running lights fame a deeper, wider gill, with chrome horizontal slats that give the front end a more bold and obvious presence.  The cut lines on the sides of the Elantra …

Read more 2017 Hyundai Elantra Limited – Road Test Review – By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman

2017 Hyundai SANTA FE Ultimate – Road Test Review – By Tim Esterdahl

  Overlooked by many consumers, the 2017 Hyundai Santa Fe is the sleeper pick by many journalists as the best full-size CUV on the market. Why the disconnect between consumers and critics? No idea, it is really that good. The Hyundai Santa Fe has been around for years and in 2012 a longer-wheel base model called the Limited hit the sales rooms. As opposed to the smaller Sport model, the Limited offers a third-row – a key item for family shoppers. It also received a different grille design, optional 19 inch alloy wheels, dual exhaust tips and its overall shape …

Read more 2017 Hyundai SANTA FE Ultimate – Road Test Review – By Tim Esterdahl

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2017 Subaru WRX Limited Sport Lineartronic – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

WRX= love. But CVT= hate. Can they get along? For Subie’s sake!? Few cars are as enamored by enthusiasts as the WRX. While the rest of the world had enjoyed Subaru’s extreme rally car for the street, it wasn’t until 2002 that we got one here. It was worth the wait. While it had a cult following for the in-the-know, the majority of the population had no idea. We have happy memories of terrorizing a Porsche 911 with a silver, bug-eyed 2002 test sedan. It was so unassuming, yet with its turbo-four cylinder and all-wheel-drive, immensely capable and fast. What’s …

Read more 2017 Subaru WRX Limited Sport Lineartronic – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

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2017 Hyundai Elantra Limited – Road Test Review – By Lyndon Johnson

Is the 2017 Hyundai Elantra Limited a “dad car?” What the heck is a “dad car,” anyway? Those are the questions with which I wrangled during a weeklong test of the model. A couple of friends of mine described it as a “dad car.” I’m a dad of two boys. They said the car was a good fit for me. I typically like my cars quirkier than the Hyundai Elantra. My daily driver is the antithesis of what most might consider a “dad car:” a Nissan cube. For many other men I know, sedans with a definite masculinity such as …

Read more 2017 Hyundai Elantra Limited – Road Test Review – By Lyndon Johnson

Road Test Review – 2016 Hyundai Sonata 2.0T Limited – By Carl Malek

When the revamped Hyundai Sonata first made its appearance back in 2009, it immediately stood out thanks to its slick exterior styling which marked a noticeable departure from the more mundane styling cues that once defined older Sonatas as well as Hyundai products in general. Can the revamped 2016 Hyundai Sonata still deliver on its promises of slick styling, while also retaining the impressive levels of technology that made the last generation model a hit with buyers? The exterior styling still looks handsome and elegant but whereas the last generation model was a ground up design, this iteration shares more …

Read more Road Test Review – 2016 Hyundai Sonata 2.0T Limited – By Carl Malek

2017 Chrysler PACIFICA Limited – First Drive VIDEO Review + 78 Photos

Feast your eyes on this beauty! The most premium minivan… ever.  The 2016 Pacifica Limited is impressive from all sides. Its drive is a nice showcase of the line.  The vehicle feels fast and quite rigid in the chassis.  This lets the ride be extra supple, and is a rarity in the van segment versus the Honda Odyssey, in particular.   No wobble around back is a delight to report in this next-gen Chrysler.  The nine-speed auto and potent V6 are terrific on hard throttle. The exterior styling is a huge hit.  It is smooth but sleekly aero-honed.  Panel gaps …

Read more 2017 Chrysler PACIFICA Limited – First Drive VIDEO Review + 78 Photos

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2016 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited – Road Test Review – By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman

Tell the truth: when you see one of the big SUV on the road, the first thing you think about is how much the gas costs to run it. And while we are currently enjoying relatively low gas prices right now, trust me, the oil companies are working night and day to reverse that trend.  And they will invent some reason to scare us into believing that gas prices are justified in going up.  But I digress . . . When the Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited showed up in my driveway, I was amazed to look on the Monroney Label and …

Read more 2016 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited – Road Test Review – By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman

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First Drive – 2016 RAM 1500 LIMITED EcoDiesel + VIDEO Walkaround and 70 Pics

  The absolute king of the job sites? The RAM Limited pack offers unlimited access to major energy, mining and construction projects.  Simply by its bad-ass visual boldness! In black over chrome for this tester, the $3k Limited package’s bright RAM script was well worth the cash, front and rear.  The new grille is an objet d’art.  It stencil motif lives inside in a twisted, western-inspired stitching across the cabin details.             We even warmed up to the 14000-size RAM font on the tailgate.  Might prefer the Limited-spec, body-color bumpers versus the $300 return to …

Read more First Drive – 2016 RAM 1500 LIMITED EcoDiesel + VIDEO Walkaround and 70 Pics

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Road Test Review – 2016 Toyota TACOMA Limited 4×4 DoubleCab – By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman

The mid-size Toyota Tacoma has been around for a long time, and has deserved its reputation for being rugged, reliable, and inexpensive to operate. And they don’t change much over the years.  In fact, the 2015 model had been mostly unchanged since the 2005 edition.  As you can imagine it was long overdue for an update.  Enter the 2016 model. The 2016 model features an all new engine and transmission, new interior and exterior styling, yet the core of the Tacoma’s mission statement remains the same. Truth be told, it has been so long since I’ve tested a Tacoma, I …

Read more Road Test Review – 2016 Toyota TACOMA Limited 4×4 DoubleCab – By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman

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Drive Review – 2016 RAM 3500 LIMITED Cummins Dually – By Carl Malek

A Tale Of Two Trucks – Part 1 The 2016 RAM 3500 Limited & 2016 RAM 2500 Longhorn   With pickup trucks seeing a resurgence in both popularity and sales these days due to low fuel prices, many automakers are revamping their long term sales strategies to try and meet this newfound demand. FCA and their Ram brand are no exception, and are doubling down on their efforts to steal the sales crown away from both Ford and General Motors thanks to offerings such as the Ram 1500 EcoDiesel as well as recent shifts in production capacity. I wanted to find out for …

Read more Drive Review – 2016 RAM 3500 LIMITED Cummins Dually – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2016 Chrysler 200 Limited with Tim Esterdahl

Review: 2016 Chrysler 200 Limited, Overlooked For No Good Reason One of the hardest jobs of any automotive journalist is writing about a vehicle when the company says it will stop producing it. Such is the case with the 2016 Chrysler 200. FCA boss Sergio Marchionne has declared they will let it run its course. For consumers, this may cast a bad mark on the vehicle since the perception is something must be wrong with it. Yet, taking a close look at the Chrysler 200, it is obvious what the problem is. The car is simply overlooked on sales lots …

Read more Road Test Review – 2016 Chrysler 200 Limited with Tim Esterdahl

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Road Test Review – 2016 INFINITI QX80 Limited with Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman

2016 INFINITI QX80 Limited AWD Review By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman   The first thing I noticed when the Infiniti QX80 arrived in my driveway was how big it is.  It’s HUGE.  How huge is it?  I think the front bumper resides in a different zip code than the rear bumper. (Rim-shot)  You don’t look for a parking space as much as a mooring. (Another rim-shot).  If you are not Shaquille O’Neal, you better get a ladder if you want to wash the roof. The QX80 is a full five-inches longer than a Cadillac Escalade, and has a five-inch longer wheelbase.  That’s …

Read more Road Test Review – 2016 INFINITI QX80 Limited with Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman

2017 Infiniti QX70 Limited – Live from New York

NY SOV? Share of Voice was the original acronym above. But NY State of Mind seems like a better headline for the new QX70 Limited’s moody, modern aesthetic. The Infiniti QX70 Limited is fresh for 2017 with a slew of design and luxury modifications to the original super-SUV shape. Rear-drive or AWD and running a V6 exclusively these days, the new QX70 Limited debuts the fresh grille that will adorn all QX70’s from mid-summertime… and more. A new lower fascia in contrast bright pewter is eye-catching, as are the new LED DRLs taking the spot of the round foglamps on …

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New York SoM! 2017 Infiniti QX70 Limited Special Pips Big Debuts with Early Reveal

NY SOV? Share of Voice was the original acronym above. But NY State of Mind seems like a better headline for the new QX70 Limited’s moody, modern aesthetic. The Infiniti QX70 Limited is fresh for 2017 with a slew of design and luxury modifications to the original super-SUV shape. Rear-drive or AWD and running a V6 exclusively these days, the new QX70 Limited debuts the fresh grille that will adorn all QX70’s from mid-summertime… and more. A new lower fascia in contrast bright pewter is eye-catching, as are the new LED DRLs taking the spot of the round foglamps on …

Read more New York SoM! 2017 Infiniti QX70 Limited Special Pips Big Debuts with Early Reveal

Road Test Review - 2016 Subaru Legacy 3

Road Test Review – 2016 Subaru Legacy 3.6R Limited

2016 Subaru Legacy 3.6R Limited Review By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman   In the late 60’s Subaru came to the United States.  Like other Japanese brands at the time, Subaru’s were small, oddly styled, and considered quirky, compared to US autos.  In the early 1970’s Subaru chose to set themselves apart by introducing all-wheel-drive.  And while they didn’t invent AWD, but at that time, if a customer wanted a vehicle with all-wheel-drive, they were pretty much limited to Jeep products, or truck models.   By offering all-wheel-drive and introducing economical, small displacement boxer-style engines, Subaru cars appealed to an audience interested in …

Read more Road Test Review – 2016 Subaru Legacy 3.6R Limited

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HAMANN Lamborghini Aventador Roadster – Exotic Aerokit Banishes SV Envy

If your Aventador is the crown jewel in your fleet, you may be experiencing some dissonance at the moment. Your Lambo is no longer the coolest and newest variant. The SuperVeloce coupe and roadster are now the hottest on the block. But is the SV set of tweaks from Lambo really worth getting an entirely new machine?  What about the $500k you spent in 2013? HAMANN to the rescue! There are dozens of ways to soup up your Lamborghini, but this eight-piece kit is one of the most effective for SV-besting looks. It is quite exotic, and the bodywork changes help to …

Read more HAMANN Lamborghini Aventador Roadster – Exotic Aerokit Banishes SV Envy

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4.0s 2015 KTM X-Bow R Limited Edition by WIMMER RST

Just three of these very special KTM crossbowes will be made as a special performance model by German KTM distributor Wimmer Racing. Power is up by 80 ponies to 380 in total, dropping acceleration times comfortably into the 4’s via a new engine tine, carbon intake elements, and sports turbo upgrades. The X-Bow R wears a few of the tastiest KTM factory options, including a full aero underbody with extreme new diffusers and splitters. Plus the downforce package from a shockingly huge new wing in back.   2015 KTM X-Bow R Limited Edition by WIMMER RST KTM X-BOW R LIMITED …

Read more 4.0s 2015 KTM X-Bow R Limited Edition by WIMMER RST

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First Drive Review, Video and Pricing – 2016 Hyundai TUCSON Limited 1.6T AWD DCT

First spin in the new Tucson and verrrry impressed!  The loaded test car ran a superb turbo 1.6 through a new dual-clutch 7-speed automatic — creating a bit of a GTI in a crossover shell. Granted, as you can see in the pricing by trimline below, the Tucson does get a bet pricey with the upgraded engine and automatic, plus another grand for AWD. Base for the Tucson Limited is $32k. Which would seem crazy for the old Tucson. But this new model is completely redone — now becoming the widest car in its class and one that feels massive …

Read more First Drive Review, Video and Pricing – 2016 Hyundai TUCSON Limited 1.6T AWD DCT

Road Test Review – 2015 Toyota Highlander AWD Limited – Fave Family Truckster Is Tahoe-Tough but Lexus-Smooth

2015 Toyota Highlander AWD Limited Review There is a huge rationality shake-out in the large SUV segment. Buyers are no longer willing to shoulder enormous fuel bills and big-rig parking manners in order to seat seven. Nor are they up for joining the minivan clan — typically using the AWD or all-weather argument to avoid that blatant admission of parenthood. The 2015 Highlander is right at the center of a new SUV ideal for millions of post-van, post-SUV buyers. Why can’t there be a car-based crossover with jumbo cabin space, but AWD and enough ground clearance to glide over gravel …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Toyota Highlander AWD Limited – Fave Family Truckster Is Tahoe-Tough but Lexus-Smooth

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HD Road Test Review – 2015 INFINITI QX80 Limited AWD

In the global Renault-Nissan portfolio, the QX80 Limited lives among greats like the R35 GT-R or RenaultSport Megane Trophy. Being such an event car and flagship has always been a core part of the massive truck’s appeal among owners. With all the class of a Range Rover, but all the guts of a Denali — the QX80 is famous worldwide for its bomb-proof chassis toughness married to a standard 400HP V8. The QX80 is fresh for 2015 with new nose detailing, LEDs and an extra-swanky new Limited option pack. Fabulous opulence inside this cabin rivals any superlux mark worldwide, and …

Read more HD Road Test Review – 2015 INFINITI QX80 Limited AWD

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HD Road Test Review – 2015 Hyundai AZERA Limited Vastly Outhandles and Outcomforts Avalon, LaCrosse + 300

Few automotive market segments have such a tightly defined target market as full-size sedans. And unlike minivans, SUVs and even musclecars, the real-life buyer profile of large cars is almost always this core set of consumers. The full-size sedan buyer is in their mid-50s, seeks limo-large back-seat space, and wants the latest premium tech. All with a price cap of $40,000. For their cash, full-size sedans typically deliver a huge bump in roominess versus their mid-size siblings, but sometimes with unintended consequences. After all, it is extremely tough for even the best carmakers to pack S-Class tech into a half-price …

Read more HD Road Test Review – 2015 Hyundai AZERA Limited Vastly Outhandles and Outcomforts Avalon, LaCrosse + 300

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2015 Bell & Ross BR 03 RAFALE Is Ceramic Special With Fighter-Jet Tech Transfer

Welcome to the latest Bell & Ross showpiece: the BR 03 Rafale. Revealed at this year’s Basel World convention, this 500-unit run takes the Bell & Ross aesthetic and identity well into the future via all-new style and military technology transfer. The most striking element of this $6,200 watch is its case, which eschews the typical milled alloys and stainless steel of most watches from this hot French marque. By swapping metal for ceramic, the Rafale promises to be a real featherweight on the wrist. The big-watch trend takes some time to get used to on your wrist. You learn …

Read more 2015 Bell & Ross BR 03 RAFALE Is Ceramic Special With Fighter-Jet Tech Transfer

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Road Test Review – 2015 Hyundai Santa Fe Limited AWD With Ken Glassman

    2015 Hyundai Santa Fe Limited AWD Review By Ken Glassman These days, it seems like everyone loves the sport utility vehicle, and it’s the most hotly contested segment in the car market. Whether it’s the compact, midsize, or large version, the family hauler is now usually some form of SUV. And Hyundai’s Santa Fe models are serious players in that segment. For those looking for a smaller midsize SUV, the Santa Fe Sport is Hyundai’s entry ticket. It seats five adults and their cargo comfortably and offers a choice of two different 4-cyclindar gas engines — a 2.4 …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Hyundai Santa Fe Limited AWD With Ken Glassman

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HD Road Test Review – 2015 Chrysler 300 Limited – Great Box, So-So Rack

The Chrysler 300 is fresh for 2015 with more than half of its parts either all-new or redesigned. The upgrade list is massive — and even includes the American full-size icon’s exterior. But the changes outside are far more subtle than those under the skin and in the cabin. Chrysler is keeping the original 300 style alive for 2015 — hoping to ignite the same huge swell of passion that surrounded the original 2005 model. What a launch that was. Makes you smile to recall the full-size American car reclaiming its former glory as gigantic, affordable wheels. This segment of …

Read more HD Road Test Review – 2015 Chrysler 300 Limited – Great Box, So-So Rack

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Road Test Review – 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited 4×4 with Ken Glassman

2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited 4×4 By Ken Glassman   The Jeep came into existence during World War II, when the US Government needed a small agile 4-wheel drive vehicle that could get through mud, snow, and sand, and carry 4 soldiers, crawl up and down hills, ford small streams, tow a light artillery piece, and be reliable and easy to service. Millions of them were built, and they saw action in the forests of Europe, and the sands and jungles of Asia in World War II, as well as Korea, and even Viet Nam. And millions of soldiers drove …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited 4×4 with Ken Glassman

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Refreshed 2016 Toyota RAV4 and New RAV4 Hybrid Make NY Debut

  Toyota is rolling out an update for the 2016 RAV4 that includes a new design for the nose and tail, LED lighting all around and some very cool new cabin tech. The Hybrid is a perfect demo platform for these new features because it will come in two loaded flavors, with the ‘trifecta’ of LEDs up front and LED brake lights as standard. These are likely optional on the cheaper, gas-powered trim lines. In this new and far more appealing nose, the RAV4 runs LED foglamps, LED DRL’s forming a sharp accent line across the top of the headlamps, …

Read more Refreshed 2016 Toyota RAV4 and New RAV4 Hybrid Make NY Debut

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Road Test Review – 2015 Subaru Outback Limited By Ken Glassman

  2015 Subaru Outback Limited By Ken Glassman Since nearly 25% of Subaru’s total vehicle sales, or around 120,000 copies, comes from the Outback model, Subaru understood that radical changes would be a risky proposition. Outback buyers are a fiercely loyal group, and that’s because they have been happy with the package that Subaru has been offering for many years. So while the 2015 model is based off the new Legacy sedan, the Outback changes have been evolutionary, not revolutionary. The result is a better vehicle, with mild styling changes, and improvements. PERFORMANCE Two engine options are available, and while …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Subaru Outback Limited By Ken Glassman

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First Drive Review – 2015 Subaru BRZ Series.Blue on Video in Crystal White

How fantastic does this BRZ look! Despite the pouring rain, the pearlescent Crystal White paint of this Series.Blue BRZ really pops with its LED accents glowing inside Texas Motor Speedway. The nose feels pointer on this recalibrated suspension with its STI wheels, body kit and underbody aero fascias — but the rear-drive all-star is still a joy to drift. A perfect driving position, steering and shift linkage are delightful as ever, while the blue lather and suede of the seats offer a bit of premium appeal to this 500-unit special edition. 2015 Subaru BRZ Series.Blue   2015 Subaru BRZ Series …

Read more First Drive Review – 2015 Subaru BRZ Series.Blue on Video in Crystal White

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2016 Toyota Avalon Brings New Suspension Tuning, LED + Tech Upgrades and Top-line Touring Trim

  The 2016 Toyota Avalon is refreshed for Chicago including a number of tweaks to the current style and trim levels, plus a loaded Touring trim to top the model line with sporty dark-grey wheels and grille. All 2016 Avalons benefit from enhanced chassis tuning — with the suspension now delivering a better sport and comfort ride compromise than the current model. Shifted a bit too far toward sporty springs in its 2012 refresh, the Avalon in this generation was never too happy either cruising or handling tight bends at speed. We hope the new model addresses this unhappy handling …

Read more 2016 Toyota Avalon Brings New Suspension Tuning, LED + Tech Upgrades and Top-line Touring Trim

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2016 Ford Explorer Sport Inside and Out in 28 New Photos from Houston

  Thrilled to see the 2016 Explorer is progressing and evolving into an even better seven-seat SUV: new engines, new luxury and tech inside, and new style outside are all very promising. Even more exciting for shoppers than the new Platinum trim level at the top of the ladder? All new colors for every trim level – even the base Explorer 2.3-liter EcoBoost from $31,000. We’ve prepared this animated colors visualizer with half an eye toward file sizes. Previous Mustang and 2015 Edge color articles have nearly broken the poor interwebs under the weight of 400-plus images. =]     …

Read more 2016 Ford Explorer Sport Inside and Out in 28 New Photos from Houston

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2016 Toyota Tacoma TRD Off-Road Trim Is Mid-Size Raptor-Hunter

Lots of action in the new 2016 Tacoma range this year. Along with the leather-seated Limited trim come two new TRD packages, with this TRD Off-Road trim level particularly captivating. Huge 35-inch tires, mud-friendly detailing and the AccessCab shown here are all very new and cool indeed. The lift and suspension tweaks for the special-wheeled TRD Off-Road package make it the only mid-size truck capable of going everywhere a Ford Raptor can on the rough stuff. The sandy Moab color help reinforce the Tacoma TRD’s Moab credibility, as do the fender flares and unique grille versus the Limited. A new …

Read more 2016 Toyota Tacoma TRD Off-Road Trim Is Mid-Size Raptor-Hunter

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30 New Photos! 2016 Toyota Tacoma Delivers Big Tech Upgrades, LED DRLs + New Limited and TRD Trims

Updated 1.12.2015 Thrilled to share the full details of the upcoming Toyota Tacoma, which packs all-new engines and transmissions, a full redesign outside and in, and even a new range-topping Limited trim level. The biggest news for the best-selling Tacoma is the addition of six-speed automatics for the base four-cylinder trucks and the top 3.5-liter V6. The new transmission promises a quicker sprint time as well as a near 15-percent jump in fuel economy all by itself. But it is not working solo. The new V6 is very special indeed, with a truck-first combination of direct and port fuel injection …

Read more 30 New Photos! 2016 Toyota Tacoma Delivers Big Tech Upgrades, LED DRLs + New Limited and TRD Trims

2015 Hyundai Sonata Limited Review

Road Test Review – 2015 Hyundai Sonata Limited – By Ken Glassman

2015 Hyundai Sonata Limited Review By Ken Glassman The first Hyundai Sonata appeared on the scene way back in 1988. It was a small, homely looking sedan, but a capable, economical car with a lot of content found only on cars costing a few thousand dollars more. And it may be best remembered for having a five year bumper to bumper warranty, and 10 years on the powertrain. Hyundai in those years were trying to impress the buying public that their cars were ready for prime time, and they were willing to back them up with the best warranty in …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Hyundai Sonata Limited – By Ken Glassman

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760HP HAMANN Aventador Limited Scores AutoBild Tuned Supercar Award

12 parts to greatness? The massive upgrade in aggression in the HAMANN Aventador Limited is thanks to just a dozen well-judged body additions — plus a giant custom exhaust system, of course. Our favorite pieces from the Hamann Aventador catalog are the rear wing and the giant engine scoop – available in a contrast accent color or exposed-weave carbon-fiber in a glossy sheen. HAMANN Aventador Limited     HAMANN Lamborghini Aventador front bumper unit HAMANN Lamborghini Aventador rear wing 4-pcd increase downforce on rear axle in clear-coated Carbon black HAMANN Lamborghini Aventador side skirts 4-pcd including Carbon inserts in clear-coated …

Read more 760HP HAMANN Aventador Limited Scores AutoBild Tuned Supercar Award

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2016 Ford Explorer Colors and Pricing – Animated Turntables in Every Color!

  Thrilled to see the 2016 Explorer is progressing and evolving into an even better seven-seat SUV: new engines, new luxury and tech inside, and new style outside are all very promising. Even more exciting for shoppers than the new Platinum trim level at the top of the ladder? All new colors for every trim level – even the base Explorer 2.3-liter EcoBoost from $31,000. We’ve prepared this animated colors visualizer with half an eye toward file sizes. Previous Mustang and 2015 Edge color articles have nearly broken the poor interwebs under the weight of 400-plus images. =] BASE PRICING …

Read more 2016 Ford Explorer Colors and Pricing – Animated Turntables in Every Color!

McLaren Special Operations Branches into Five MSO Specialties

  Supercar news blast today! In addition to a first look at the Ferrari FXX K, McLaren is adding to the drama with its latest MSO announcement. This is largely a tech nical and organizational change – broadening the reach and brand of MSO to better match McLaren client needs. MSO will become: — MSO Defined (general upgrades catalog) — MSO Bespoke (you dream it, they make it real) — MSO Limited (MSO releases like the MSO 650S shown below) — MSO Heritage (classics, custom restorations and maintenance)   — MSO Programmes (racing, events, P1 GTR track days, etc)   …

Read more McLaren Special Operations Branches into Five MSO Specialties

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Road Test Review – 2015 Chrysler 200 Limited Is ThisClose To Being Great

What keeps the Chrysler 200 Limited from really seeming like a good car – one to crack the top five of the best mid-size sedan ranks? When we picked up this rented 200 from Enterprise in Chicago last month, the initial impressions were very good indeed. There is almost nothing carry-over inside — which is a huge relief after years of every Chrysler product reminding this author of his family’s 1996 Town & Country. We know the 200 looks very good – but you just expect it to be the same heap of garbage on the road as every Chrysler …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Chrysler 200 Limited Is ThisClose To Being Great

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Road Test Review – 2015 Subaru Legacy 2.5i Limited Is Nipping Camry and Mazda6 Heels

Rave review first-drive here on the new Subaru Legacy! Along with three dozen all-new photos of this newly-competitive mid-size car. It looks like the drive video we shot did not survive its GoPro upload to the computer, so we will write this one up the old-fashioned way! EXTERIOR The new Legacy’s design is shown in its best light with the 2.5i Limited, which wears the latest LED accents and projector-beam lighting from the 3.6R top-line model. As equipped, this 2.5i is actually very handsome and premium. Why the surprise? Well, let’s face it: the base Legacy has been seriously nerdy …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Subaru Legacy 2.5i Limited Is Nipping Camry and Mazda6 Heels

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Track Drive Review – 2015 Subaru WRX Manual is Turbo Boxer HEAVEN

UPDATED 10.23.14 Thrilled to have spent more time with the new WRX — again on a racetrack! Pretty lucky chap. And this time, we came back thrilled. Absolutely floored with love for the WRX. Why? This test car was a manual versus the automatic. The differences could not be more stark – with big engine burble, more playful handling, and feeling like it has and extra 100 horsepower versus the pokey auto. Love it. Check out the full drive video below. It picks up about 3-minutes in.     The 2015 Subaru WRX is really a terrific car: much more …

Read more Track Drive Review – 2015 Subaru WRX Manual is Turbo Boxer HEAVEN

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2015 Hyundai Tucson COLORS Guide in 9 Animated Turntables and 295 Photos!

Below, we established that the Hyundai Tucson is the objective car shopper’s dream. It really has it all, including available AWD and a modern design with LEDs front and back. Inside, try to find a feature this crossover does not have. Very good mini truck. Sure, it is not that speedy or sporty. But neither are most shoppers! So let’s dive into a colors guide, shall we? Sidebar: how do we do this amazing technical wizardry? How do we do any of this website stuff!? The better question is Why: and the answer is… to bring unique value and visuals …

Read more 2015 Hyundai Tucson COLORS Guide in 9 Animated Turntables and 295 Photos!

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2015 Hyundai Tucson is Trendy Crossover With Loaded Pricing Under $30,000

When it comes to model pricing, manufacturers seem to have a few strategies across brands and model lines. We’ve observed two concrete patterns: — at the low end, pricing pushes the limits of profitability to have that headline-grabbing base price — at the top end, things get seriously ambitious. Any chop in the margins of the base car is nearly doubled up top. This makes sense. A low base price can help people to jump a price bracket on the hope that they can afford a larger or better car for their limited cash. But with options and a good …

Read more 2015 Hyundai Tucson is Trendy Crossover With Loaded Pricing Under $30,000

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2015 Subaru Impreza Brings Fresh Nose Design, New Lighting and Refined Interior Details

America’s most winterized and adventurous compact car range is slightly freshened for 2015! This brings a new nose to include the grille, front bumper and headlamps, while out back the hatchback gets a new spoiler and the sedan switched to LED lighting for its CHMSL. Subtle changes, but effective at keeping the Impreza clean and stylish versus its powerful WRX siblings.   2015 SUBARU IMPREZA® GETS NEW LOOK, NEW REFINEMENTS AND NOW OFFERS EYESIGHT® DRIVER ASSIST TECHNOLOGY Revised front styling with new headlights, grille and bumper Enhancements make cabin quieter New infotainment systems and features Upgraded interior trim Improved mileage …

Read more 2015 Subaru Impreza Brings Fresh Nose Design, New Lighting and Refined Interior Details

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Concept Flashback – 2009 Audi R8 TDI V12 Shows Great Engineering Potential, But Limited Market

Audi seems to have no trouble winning LeMans with its ultra-sophisticated R18 models in the last decade — but has struggled mightily trying to translate racing tech to the road. Even today, there is no clear link between Audi racing glory and the cars sold by Audi dealerships. Sure, there is anecdotal evidence hat motorsport success has fueled Audi’s continued sales rise — but it is a tenuous link. Upon the arrival of Audis’ first supercar, the R8, this finally looked set to change. At last — a way to show how LeMans racing improves the breed in general! The …

Read more Concept Flashback – 2009 Audi R8 TDI V12 Shows Great Engineering Potential, But Limited Market

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2015 INFINITI QX80 Limited Is Red-Carpet Glamour with Genius IQ – 150 Photo Debut

Think the Escalade is the freshest and best super-luxury full-size SUV for 2015? Think again: the new QX80 Limited has a new VIP backstage pass. The QX80 Limited is a new flagship trim level that is a comprehensive style and substance upgrade for an already-extremely-tough truck — with all the dark trims, 22-inch wheels, latest LEDs and Autech cabin restyle adding serious desirability to this already-formidable package. Build with a frame + unibody and a 5.6-liter V8, the QX80’s strength and size has never been in question. What the truck was missing was some of the X factor of style …

Read more 2015 INFINITI QX80 Limited Is Red-Carpet Glamour with Genius IQ – 150 Photo Debut

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2015 Hyundai Elantra Sedan Brings Classy LED and Tech Updates – Features, Photos and Pricing

Fresh off its JD Power Initial QUality Study victory, the Hyundai Elantra Sedan is updated for 2015 with some refined and classy LED additions front and rear, plus a tech suite upgrade inside. The Elantra’s fluidic sculpture design of the Elantra is still one of the best in the compact segment – along with the Mazda3 and Dodge Dart as perhaps the other two coolest compact sedans available. Making a small sedan sporty, low and wide on the road is not an easy thing. Just take a look at the Ford Focus or Fiesta sedans for evidence of the unpleasant …

Read more 2015 Hyundai Elantra Sedan Brings Classy LED and Tech Updates – Features, Photos and Pricing

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MEGA Road Test Review – 2015 Hyundai Sonata Is Like A Value-Added Audi A6 – Choice Between Lux or Sport Dynamics

MEGA Road Test Review – 2015 Hyundai Sonata Is Like A Value-Added Audi A6 – Choice Between Lux or Sport Dynamics   If you are keeping track, this is perhaps the fifth article in a series covering the 2015 Sonata’s launch. We were fortunate enough to attend the big event the other week and have been working up to this: the definitive review! After much consideration, the new Sonata reminds me most of the Audi A6 2.0T – in size, what it offers buyers, and in overall appeal. Shocking, right? Especially with the Sonata’s base pricing in the $20,000’s that …

Read more MEGA Road Test Review – 2015 Hyundai Sonata Is Like A Value-Added Audi A6 – Choice Between Lux or Sport Dynamics

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Road Test Review – 2015 Hyundai Sonata – INTERIOR Focus – 2.4L Limited vs 2.0T Sport

  Thrilled to report that the 2015 Hyundai Sonata is an outstanding drive and a very compelling entry into the mid-size sedan marketplace. Midsize? It is huge in here! Yes, mid-size in price but a Large Car by EPA cabin volume — where the new Sonata is comfortably close to the scale of large luxury cars. Over the next few days, we will cover the 2015 Sonata extensively – but segmented out by theme and topic due to the extensive first-hand impressions driving the Eco, 2.4L Limited and the Sport 2.0T trim levels. There are noticeable differences between the trims …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Hyundai Sonata – INTERIOR Focus – 2.4L Limited vs 2.0T Sport

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2015 Hyundai Sonata Sport 2.0T – 160 Photos From National Media Launch!

Lovely days in Montgomery, Alabama visiting the Hyundai Motor Manufacturing America plant for the national media launch of the 2015 Sonata! Full drive impressions and reviews of the various models have to wait until next week when the press embargo is up on 12:01am on Monday — but these photos are fair game… The car looks outstanding in person versus my initial impressions when the car debuted at the New York Auto Show earlier this year. The new Sonata is very distinct across its standard, Eco and Sport trims – with the Sport my obvious preference due to its dark …

Read more 2015 Hyundai Sonata Sport 2.0T – 160 Photos From National Media Launch!

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2014 Toyota Venza Limited Is Like An Allroad Avalon Limousine

For shoppers with back-seat room and all-weather traction top-of-mind, the Toyota Venza is a compelling luxury sedan alternative. With dimensions that make this much like an ‘all-road’ Avalon, the Venza is able to maintain a truly hushed cabin for five. Roominess in back is even better than the Avalon, courtesy of extra recline angle in the back seat and a higher seat base. Overall access is far easier in a car like the Venza, which is unique in delivering an ultra-low floor and step-in height versus many other crossovers. The huge doors make ingress much easier than even the longer …

Read more 2014 Toyota Venza Limited Is Like An Allroad Avalon Limousine

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Road Test Review – 2014 Toyota 4Runner Limited 2WD Is Low and Sexy

A two-wheel-drive 4Runner? Why? I might have asked myself the same thing if it weren’t 95-degrees of scorching sun in South Carolina today. In places like this, the usefulness of four-wheel-drive is extremely limited. 2014 Toyota 4Runner Limited 2WD … Is Sexy?   Yes, it is. Especially in this white with dark windows – the new 4Runner Limited is quite a looker. The benefits of rear-drive for the 4Runner make it a real stand-out in the seven-seat segment — the vast majority of other crossovers are front-drive machines that can be AWD when equipped. Standard rear-drive is a blessing for …

Read more Road Test Review – 2014 Toyota 4Runner Limited 2WD Is Low and Sexy

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Updated with 37 High-Res Photos – Track Review – 2015 Subaru WRX Automatic

Updated with 37 High-Res Photos – Track Review – 2015 Subaru WRX Automatic The 2015 Subaru WRX is really a terrific car: much more rigid chassis, same awesome handling, but now much better-looking and far more liveable on a daily basis. The regular WRX is also darn close to the STI in the official sprint times: 5.2s for the WRX plays about 4.8-seconds for the STI. This test car is the automatic, which is a CVT this year with six-speed or eight-speed paddle-shifter settings available. Unfortunately, the automatic WRX did not feel quite as peppy as the manual cars’ times …

Read more Updated with 37 High-Res Photos – Track Review – 2015 Subaru WRX Automatic

2014 Nissan 370Z Coupe – Colors, Specs, Options and Prices from $30k

Can we be real for a second here? The Nissan 370Z NISMO is an awesome sports car. But if it were my hard-earned, I would snap up the standard 370Z almost any day of the week over not just the NISMO Z-car, but also the Scion FR-S, Subaru BRZ and WRX, the Focus ST… almost anything. For the 330-horsepower + rear-drive value equation, only the Hyundai Genesis Coupe gets close. Yes, the Mustang and Camaro exist. But they would not be my personal choices with a V6. The BMW 228i M Sport would be the only other rear-drive coupe on …

Read more 2014 Nissan 370Z Coupe – Colors, Specs, Options and Prices from $30k

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MEGA Road Test Review – 2014 Toyota Tundra 5.7L V8 CrewMax Limited

INTRO   Ahh, the joys of moving from a little car to a giant truck. Can they ever truly be overstated? The first few minutes, you are simply in awe at how large a vehicle you are piloting. The steering can feel a bit slow, and the width takes getting used to. But after less than a mile, you start to “get it.” You get the big view forward and to all sides. You get the sense that the roominess of the Tundra’s cabin goes on for miles and miles. And you get the sense, most importantly, that you are …

Read more MEGA Road Test Review – 2014 Toyota Tundra 5.7L V8 CrewMax Limited

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2015 Subaru BRZ Series.Blue Limited-Edition Brings STI Goodies

2015 Subaru BRZ Series Blue …. Also Available in White. No joke. 500 copies of the World Rally Blue color and 500 copies of Crystal White are the only choices for the top-spec Series.Blue limited edition coming this summer to Subaru BRZ fans. A minimal makeover of the 2015 BRZ will kick off the second-generation cars’ market tenure: underbody aero panels smooth the drag coefficient, STI wheels and body accessories add drama outside, while larger exhaust tips and a shark-fin radio antenna also join the fun for 2015. The cars are also likely to include a bit more NVH material …

Read more 2015 Subaru BRZ Series.Blue Limited-Edition Brings STI Goodies

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2015 Subaru WRX Colors – All 7 Shades in Animated Turntables + Track Testing Videos

The 2015 Subaru WRX is really a terrific car: much more rigid chassis, same awesome handling, but now much better-looking and far more liveable on a daily basis. The regular WRX is also darn close to the STI in the official sprint times: 5.2s for the WRX plays about 4.8-seconds for the STI. This test car is the automatic, which is a CVT this year with six-speed or eight-speed paddle-shifter settings available. Unfortunately, the automatic WRX did not feel quite as peppy as the manual cars’ times suggest above: we estimate this automatic WRX to hit 60-mph in about 6.2 …

Read more 2015 Subaru WRX Colors – All 7 Shades in Animated Turntables + Track Testing Videos

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Road Test Review – 2014 Dodge Journey Crossroad

The Dodge Journey is updated for 2014 with yet another special edition: this one called the Crossroad. It complements the Blacktop Journey with pricing from about $25,000 – which is a big jump from the advertised base pricing for the Journey that starts at $20,000. This is the first Dodge, Ram or Chrysler review I have written since January 12th when the Ram Mossy Oak debuted in Detroit. I would like to report good things – that this car was such a revelation that it made me cover Chrysler brands again. That is absolutely not the case with the $31,000 …

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2015 Hyundai Sonata Goes Huge – Forget Camry and Accord, This Sonata Is Benchmarking Buicks

Uh Oh. Old habits really do die hard, apparently. This new Sonata shows that some vile old standard-operating-procedures are back in vogue at Hyundai-Kia, in a BIG way: — shoddy design — shoddy performance — shoddy quality We could also add Shoddy Strategy and Shady Promises for handling, efficiency, value…. EXPLAIN: WHAT DO YOU MEAN? The recent model range changes from Hyundai are very, very bizarre in chucking the baby out with the bathwater. Three years of great sales have emboldened the team to go back to its roots in the worst possible ways. The latest ‘Busch-league’ maneuver? Ditching the …

Read more 2015 Hyundai Sonata Goes Huge – Forget Camry and Accord, This Sonata Is Benchmarking Buicks

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2015 Subaru Outback Is All-New with Better MPG and Refinement – Turbo XT or Non-CVT Both Missing

In most business segments, the term “all-new” is actually a highly regulated figure of speech intended to convey 100-percent new content. The car business is an exception to this marketing rule – obviously. All-New? Ummmm… ‘Facelifted’ is probably more accurate, Subaru, but let’s move on. Definite improvements in efficiency for the four-cylinder and CVT combo, but the rest of the additions to tech and refinement are not exactly Earth-shattering. Blind-spot warning, touchscreen navigation and a quieter cabin are all mandatory safety features that the Outback lacked altogether until the 2014 model year. The car is more attractive, with less of …

Read more 2015 Subaru Outback Is All-New with Better MPG and Refinement – Turbo XT or Non-CVT Both Missing

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2015 Expedition COLORS and Animated Turntables

2015 Expedition COLORS and Animated Turntables Updated with real-life photography as well as the latest colorizer and a few animated spinners of Green Gem and Ruby Red via Ford.com’s visualizer tool. In truth, the latest Expedition fails to excite me very much. But the upgraded cabin and suspension tech are very welcome for this big truck, especially when paired with the latest EcoBoost V6 — which will be a welcome addition versus the old 4.6 and 5.4-liter V8s that were previously still the Expedition’s only offering. Overall, however, it is brand loyalty that will sway most shoppers toward the Expedition …

Read more 2015 Expedition COLORS and Animated Turntables

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The Case for a 2016 Legacy GT – Latest Outback is Full 8 Inches Taller, Hurting Planted Stance and Handling Dramatically

Less of a case as a visual and performance appeal. The benefits of ground clearance are many, and the Outback does still handle with a far more hunkered-down feel than any SUV or crossover out there. But nothing compares with the look and road feel of a road-hugging stance, to thisguy at least. For reference, this is the 2005 Subaru Legacy GT Limited versus the 2014 Subaru Outback. 2005 Legacy is on stock Bilstein suspension but +1 18-inch wheels and a roof rack delete, which really helps sink the car visually.  

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Concept Flashbacks – Nissan DOME Zero P1 and P2 and 1987 Nissan MID4 Type II

What is not to love about a mid-engine hypercar concept? How about a three-pack of them?! These concept Nissan models are pretty amazing. All Nissans? Not exactly. The two Dome Zeroes below were from a startup by the same name, but were powered by the Nissan straight-six engine from the Z-cars of the era, making 145-horsepower in these applications. Limited any-res photos of each are readily available, but the Nissan Heritage collection does offer the specs of the 1987 MID4 Type II — which predates the Acura NSX and also foreshadowed the 300ZX and later, the 240Z of the 1990s. …

Read more Concept Flashbacks – Nissan DOME Zero P1 and P2 and 1987 Nissan MID4 Type II

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Iconic Classic: 1938 Dubonnet Hispano-Suiza H6C Xenia at Mullin Automotive Museum

Orig Published on: Nov 5, 2013 @ 13:12   If it seems like we have an unhealthy fascination for the Mullin Automotive Museum, you might be right. The cars inside this Oxnard, California collection just… write their own stories. I have a dozen more that I would like to feature, but we must start at the true nexus – or “Xenia” perhaps – of the art of French coach-building by Jacques Saoutchik and his contemporaries. How all these cars got to sunny California is no accident. In many cases – the cars in the collection were painstakingly built – sometimes …

Read more Iconic Classic: 1938 Dubonnet Hispano-Suiza H6C Xenia at Mullin Automotive Museum

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BOX SOCIAL: New 2014 Kia Soul Takes On Scion xB, xD and Nissan Cube

The Scion xB brought a series of updates for 2013, including LED running lights up front and LED brake lights out back. The Kia Soul is also new for 2014, but to call this all-new is a bit far-fetched. It is refreshed — but where it counts. The LED brake lights are really cool at night, on the highway, from behind. This should be a simple article to write: xB has a $17,500 base price and one engine, a 2.4-liter four-cylinder making 158 horsepower. This boxy shape is still pretty useful and popular – see the all-new 2014 Kia Soul’s …

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2015 Ford Expedition — New for Dallas Auto Show! 3.5L EcoBoost and Active Suspensions Promise Improvements Across-the-Board

This one slipped by me yesterday! Ford has revealed the 2015 Expedition ahead of its public debut soon at the Dallas-Fort Worth Auto Show. Why Texas? This is a huge market for the largest automobiles on Earth, and a significant earner for Ford Trucks. Dallas and Houston are the first and second top-selling DMA’s for the Expedition since 2011. In addition, the smaller show should ensure a bit more attention on the Expedition versus competing for flashbulbs in LA, Detroit or Chicago. The new Expedition wears a new front end with optional LED lighting down below — but like the …

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My Car In Detailed Turntable Animations + 30 Photos -- 2006 Subaru Legacy GT Limited 31

My Car In Detailed Turntable Animations + 30 Photos — 2005 Subaru Legacy GT Limited

One would assume that after working for some big tech names like Pandora.com and Starcom Worldwide that I would be able to master aspect ratios. Yet that silly Kodak-style 4×6, 5×7 etc layout glitch often keeps my swanky animations from playing on the homepage. Probably for the best — the site is slugggg-ish today, and those Aston Martin N430 Spinners topped 8MB in some configurations. Each! So, not exactly a low-bandwidth type of mind on thisguy. Sidebar: all the GIFs are download-able on purpose =] Regardless, I saw another very pretty car today that might make for an attractive animated …

Read more My Car In Detailed Turntable Animations + 30 Photos — 2005 Subaru Legacy GT Limited

2015 Subaru Legacy Sedan -- More Lux and Tech in Cabin -- Finally Some Exterior Style -- Even 36MPG Highway 12

2015 Subaru Legacy 2.5i and 3.6R Sedans — Much Quieter — Far More Tech Inside — Finally Some Exterior Style — Even 36MPG Highway!

The all-new 2015 Legacy launched today in Chicago, with great news all around for Subaru fans. And even enough unique features to entice those curious about the cult-like following of these AWD cars. Subaru’s are fantastic and very rewarding to drive — with handling balance and sure-footed-ness no Camry can ever match. 2015 Legacy Summary points: — This is the Legacy Sedan only, in 2.5i and 3.6R flavors (equipment lists detailed below). — A future Outback is a sure thing, but is not part of today’s big Legacy launch. — A future Legacy GT may join the fun eventually, but …

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Buyers Guide to the 2014 Toyota Highlander with Specs, Pricing and 88 Photos

[Orig Published on: Dec 29, 2013 @ 15:30] The 2014 Highlander is finally looking like a classy option versus its sibling, the wildly-popular Lexus RX crossover. But while the RX has always made its rich appearance a selling point, the previous Highlander was best described as “forgettable.” No more. This new series really cleans up the styling, while keeping the same fundamental proportions and $29,000 base pricing. On that side of the three-engine range, the Highlander runs a front-drive 2.7-liter four-cylinder producing 170 horsepower and 24 MPG on the highway. Buyers who need AWD can choose between the V6 gasoline …

Read more Buyers Guide to the 2014 Toyota Highlander with Specs, Pricing and 88 Photos

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M Performance Doubles the Drama and Road Presence of 335i, 535i and M3 With Huge Upgrades List

BMW’s M Performance team definitely has a style all its own. Centered around dark-grey carbon-fiber racing enhancements – the upgrades go all the way under the hood, in the cabin and even out back with the performance exhausts heard below. This is a comparison between the standard 535i exhaust note, versus the M Performance 535i’s exhaust note. Very convincing evidence, I must say. Hopefully the file plays for you.   Here’s a showcase of some of the parts available from M Performance. Despite the emphasis on the 335i and only the M versions of the SUVs —- the vast majority …

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2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee – Buyers Guide to Engines, Suspensions and Top Trims: Summit, Altitude and Overland

The 2014 Grand Cherokee is a hugely versatile truck – both in terms of its on-road/off-road skill set and the numerous configurations available. The base Jeep GC Laredo comes in at just $29,000 – and even this 4×2 truck has the latest 3.6-liter engine and eight-speed automatic. In other words, it is no slouch and a solid handler in corners from that light nose. But many buyers will have major engine envy if they stick with the V6. Why? The Three other optional engines catapult the Grand Cherokee from competing with the Ford Explorer — and on to competing with …

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2014 Toyota Venza Limited Is Like An Allroad Avalon Limousine

For shoppers with back-seat room and all-weather traction top-of-mind, the Toyota Venza is a compelling luxury sedan alternative. With dimensions that make this much like an ‘all-road’ Avalon, the Venza is able to maintain a truly hushed cabin for five. Roominess in back is even better than the Avalon, courtesy of extra recline angle in the back seat and a higher seat base. Overall access is far easier in a car like the Venza, which is unique in delivering an ultra-low floor and step-in height versus many other crossovers. The huge doors make ingress much easier than even the longer …

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2014 4Runner Offers Third Row and Very Cool SR5 and Limited Styles 45

2014 4Runner Offers Third Row + Very Cool SR5 and Limited Styles

The 2014 4Runner is all-new from Toyota, bringing a comprehensive restyle outside and a tech overhaul inside. The best parts of the 4Runner package remain: hardy suspension and locking diff options, off-road prowess that goes beyond electronic settings, and of course that roll-down back glass. In place of the old tailgate bench is a new slide-out parcel floor that can hold serious weight. Most critically: a third row of seating is a $1,400 option – and money well spent. It folds out of the way when not needed, but will come in handy eventually. The crimson Trail Premium 4Runner’s photos …

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2014 4Runner Offers Third Row and Very Cool SR5 and Limited Styles 45

2014 4Runner Offers Third Row + Very Cool SR5 and Limited Styles

The 2014 4Runner is all-new from Toyota, bringing a comprehensive restyle outside and a tech overhaul inside. The best parts of the 4Runner package remain: hardy suspension and locking diff options, off-road prowess that goes beyond electronic settings, and of course that roll-down back glass. In place of the old tailgate bench is a new slide-out parcel floor that can hold serious weight. Most critically: a third row of seating is a $1,400 option – and money well spent. It folds out of the way when not needed, but will come in handy eventually. The crimson Trail Premium 4Runner’s photos …

Read more 2014 4Runner Offers Third Row + Very Cool SR5 and Limited Styles

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Mega Galleries: Big and Tough 2014 Toyota Tundra Outside and In – from SR5 to Platinum and 1794

With all this love and attention lavished upon the GMC Sierra at Spaceport America, the seven available styles of 22-inch rims for the Silverado High Country, and some Super Duty love — it is time for the Toyota Tundra in all its glory. This is only a truck that can be jabbed at from afar. Up close, the width and height of this machine immediately shuts your mouth. Enjoy these mega galleries, with particular attention to my favorite: the Tundra Limited with the dark wheels! 2014 Toyota Tundra – Exterior Galleries 2014 Toyota Tundra – Interior Galleries  

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All-New 2014 MINI Hardtop Debuts LEDs Galore and Futuristic Cabin Tech

BMW’s MINI is absolutely a future textbook example of how to revive and relaunch a silent brand into a loud, crowded age. While the original 1960s Mini was much more of a phenom inside England, BMW’s ambitions have always been far more global. Spending ten years with the nightmare of Rover Cars Limited taught BMW many lessons in the 1990s about what *not* to do with a classic brand. Divesting Rover and Land Rover helped BMW pivot to a far more logical and promising ownership of Rolls-Royce, Mini, and a few other moribund sports car brands in the early 2000s. …

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Iconic Classic: 1938 Dubonnet Hispano-Suiza H6C Xenia

Iconic Classic: 1938 Dubonnet Hispano-Suiza H6C Xenia If it seems like we have an unhealthy fascination for the Mullin Automotive Museum, you might be right. The cars inside this collection just… write their own stories. I have a dozen more that I would like to feature, but we must start at the true nexus – or “Xenia” perhaps – of the art of French coach-building by Jacques Saoutchik and his contemporaries. How all these cars got to sunny California is no accident. In many cases – the cars in the collection were painstakingly built – sometimes from only drawings – …

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