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 …

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

2020 Kia Telluride SX V6 AWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Kia has been on a roll. Every vehicle we’ve tested lately, from the 2020 Kia Soul X-Line to the K900 has been a gem, and now we have the all-new Kia Telluride – a full-size, 3-row, 8-passenger SUV, and it may be the best Kia yet. And that’s saying something. The Bold and the Beautiful The Telluride is the largest vehicle Kia offers, and it’s also the first Kia designed specifically for the U.S. Kia itself calls the Telly big, bold and boxy, but this is one handsome box, looking more like a cross between a Ranger Rover and a …

Read more 2020 Kia Telluride SX V6 AWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

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

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

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

2019 Nissan Kicks SR – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Before we start this review, a moment of silence for the Nissan Juke. Yes, that odd, amphibious-looking crossover that was a bunch of fun to drive, interesting to look at, and a breath of fresh air in the stuffy small crossover segment. And now to the all-new Nissan Kicks, the Juke’s replacement. While it certainly is more conventional, it does a lot of things very well, and comes in at a bargain price. That’s a different kind of a kick, to be sure…. Goodbye Froggy, Hello Smurfy While some at Nissan tried to tell us that the Juke looked like …

Read more 2019 Nissan Kicks SR – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

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

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

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

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

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

Like two sides of a coin, the 2018 Kia Rio and the 2018 Hyundai Accent have very important roles to play for their respective brands. Both offer an affordable gateway to their respective lineups, they are small, and each also offer their buyers a unique experience that drives home the mission of their respective identities. When we last spent time in the 2018 Kia Rio, we loved the Rio’s spunk and its value oriented pricing. Can the same magic apply to its more upscale corporate sibling, the Hyundai Accent? Or is it still overshadowed by the popular Elantra? Wheras the …

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

Road Test Comparision – 2019 Volvo XC40 T5 R-Design AWD Versus 2018 Jaguar E-Pace – By Carl Malek

When the Volvo XC40 was first unveiled to the world, it not only represented Volvo’s first formal entry into the small luxury CUV ranks, but it also came with a whole host of bold promises including  youthful appeal, a budget friendly pricing ladder, as well as a revolutionary subscription service. But can the Volvo XC40 indeed be the one to fulfill these promises, while also still succeeding at its root mission in the CUV ranks at the same time? At first glance, the XC40 certainly has the aesthetic goods to back it up. While the exterior canvas is distinctively Swedish, …

Read more Road Test Comparision – 2019 Volvo XC40 T5 R-Design AWD Versus 2018 Jaguar E-Pace – By Carl Malek

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

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

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

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

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

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

Road Test Review – 2018 Volvo V90 Inscription – By Carl Malek

The idea of looking to the past has always been a long enduring trend. In the automotive world, the massive glut of SUV and CUV offerings can make folks forget that long before those two segments rose up to smother the utility vehicle market, another brand of utility reigned supreme. We’re of course talking about the venerable station wagon, which has endured various twists and bends in its iconic existence. However, like the endangered White Rhinoceros, these vehicles are straddling the line between relevance and extinction in the U.S. with only a small handful of models remaining. One of these …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Volvo V90 Inscription – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review- 2018 Mazda 3 Grand Touring (Sedan) – By Carl Malek

What makes the Mazda 3 such a good value in the compact car segment? It’s stylish good looks are definitely a good start along with an interior that has always offered occupants a near premium driving experience. But with many of its rivals either upping their aesthetic game, or offering more performance and fundamental value. Can the 2018 Mazda 3 keep up with the changing landscape while still offering the compelling DNA that keeps Mazda loyalists coming back for more? To find out, we revisited this old favorite to see for ourselves if the Mazda 3 has aged into a …

Read more Road Test Review- 2018 Mazda 3 Grand Touring (Sedan) – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2018 Genesis G80 3.3T Sport – By Carl Malek

With all the buzz surrounding the Genesis G90 flagship sedan, as well as the recent news the brand made during its appearance at the New York Auto Show. It can be easy to forget about Genesis’s other sedan offering, the G80. Originally starting its run as the Hyundai Genesis, the launch of the new brand forced the luxury laden Hyundai to transform into the newly renamed G80, and up its luxury and performance credentials at the same time. But can the G80 still stand out from not only the bigger G90 sedan? but also a field of opulent entries? or …

Read more Road Test Review – 2018 Genesis G80 3.3T Sport – By Carl Malek

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Road Test Review: 2017 Mazda MX-5 RF Club (6MT) – By Carl Malek

When we last met the 2017 Mazda MX-5 RF, we praised the fastback for offering a hardtop alternative to the venerable soft top variant, as well as giving customers better protection from the elements. However, the one thing we missed was the doses of sporty character that other MX-5’s are known for (mainly due to our tester being a luxury oriented Grand Touring model.) To find out if the wait was indeed worth it, we spent some time with the MX-5 Club to see if it could stand out in any discernible way from its slightly more sedate cousin.   …

Read more Road Test Review: 2017 Mazda MX-5 RF Club (6MT) – By Carl Malek

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

Road Test Review – 2017 Toyota 4Runner TRD Off Road – By Carl Malek

Remember the movie Jurassic Park? This classic Steven Spielberg film highlighted what would happen if dinosaurs once again roamed the earth. While these creatures are thankfully extinct, in the automotive world, there are still a handful of relics that serve as a glimpse into an era of automobiles that is slowly being replaced by crossover vehicles and a newfound zeal for green motoring. The venerable Toyota 4Runner is one of these holdouts, and has persisted thanks to its impressive degrees of capability and size. But is there still a place for the 4Runner in an ever changing marketplace? Or has the …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Toyota 4Runner TRD Off Road – By Carl Malek

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

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

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

2017 Nissan TITAN SL 4×4 – Road Test Review

Trucks are all about strength.  Why not have more towing, hauling and running power than you might need?  There is huge peace of mind in knowing you have so much excess capability. At some point, though, that extra muscle makes life more difficult.  That point is arguably between 1500 and 2500 pickups.  Yes, the 2500s have even more giant motors and higher tow ratings.  The new Nissan Titan bridges this gap and aims for 1500 ease of use but near 2500 size and stats. The Titan XD straddles that gap perfectly and the XD option comes standard with the 5.0-liter …

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

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

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

2017 Ford Escape Titanium – Road Test Review

How time flies! Ford launched this platform for the Escape around 2012 and it was a revelation for the compact crossover segment.  Handling and engine shared with the Range Rover Evoque, but with pricing $20k less?  Sign us up. Five years later and this newly-refreshed 2017 model is not nearly as appealing.  Is this lightest-of-light refreshes for 2017 enough to keep Escape competitive with its arch-rivals RAV4 and CR-V?  How about the dozens of other new CUVs with the same $25-$40k pricerange? We spent a week with the new Escape Titanium EcoBoost 4WD – the tippy top drivetrain and trim …

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2017 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring FWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

It’s tough being Mazda. After all, in the automotive world, you’re a small company, up against giants like Toyota, Ford, and Nissan. And even though you’re a famous sports car maker, you need to compete in the big-money segments like small crossovers to survive. But Mazda did more than just compete. With the original CX-5, Mazda made one of the best, most fun to drive small crossovers on the market. But time moves on, and Mazda has to as well. Will Mazda’s new CX-5 be another winner, or will it suffer from sophomore slump? Well, first of all, it’s not …

Read more 2017 Mazda CX-5 Grand Touring FWD – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

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

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

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

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Road Test Review – 2017 Mazda MX-5 RF Grand Touring (6MT) + 2 videos – By Carl Malek

It’s no secret that the Mazda MX-5 is always a welcome visitor in the Car-Revs-Daily offices. We have sampled the roadster in many locales, and even had seat time behind the wheel of its Italian cousin the Fiat 124 Spider. In short, the MX-5 (in either guise) has become an iconic example in how to make a proper two seat roadster. However, we also like the idea of adding something new to this proven recipe, and we were quite excited when Mazda unveiled the RF version. But does the addition of a folding hardtop roof add a bit more pep …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Mazda MX-5 RF Grand Touring (6MT) + 2 videos – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2017 Hyundai Ioniq Electric Limited – By Carl Malek

Once considered rolling science experiments 15 to 20 years ago, electric vehicles are seeing a resurgence in both relevance and importance to a new generation of car buyers. When I was growing up in Metro Detroit, it was in a GM household, and the infamous EV-1 was the symbol of GM’s brief but compelling trip into the world of mass market vehicle electrification. Tremendous progress has been made since then (case in point the Chevrolet Bolt), and electric vehicles are slowly making the transition from curiosity, to mass market reality. But does this mean that electric vehicles are at long …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Hyundai Ioniq Electric Limited – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review: 2017 Lincoln MKZ 3.0T Black Label – By Carl Malek

Lincoln has recently seen an upswing in fortunes over the past several years. With slick TV commercials starring celebrity Matthew McConaughey as well as a string of new vehicles, it’s clear that Ford’s once flat lining luxury brand is pulling out all the stops in its quest to lure new customers into its showrooms. But can Lincoln’s new lineup of vehicle’s reflect the new-found pulse that is circulating through the brand? Or do they come up a bit short? Even though the 2017 Lincoln Continental is currently the vehicle at the forefront of Lincoln’s recent string of TV ads due to …

Read more Road Test Review: 2017 Lincoln MKZ 3.0T Black Label – By Carl Malek

Road Test Review – 2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport (6MT) – By Carl Malek

Volkswagen’s venerable GTI hatchback has always been an iconic and almost quintessential part of the greater hot hatch segment. From its handsome styling, to its punchy lineup of engines, the GTI certainly has the blueprints to be the perfect performance value. But, could it also serve as a glimpse into an alternate future? That was the very question that this author faced when our Tornado Red GTI Sport tester arrived to spend some time at our humble Michigan outpost. You see, I almost purchased a GTI several years ago when the current generation Mk7 model was first unveiled to the …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Volkswagen GTI Sport (6MT) – By Carl Malek

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Road Test Review 2017 Audi A4 2.0 T quattro S tronic – By Carl Malek

At Audi, the phrase “Vorspung durch Technik” (Advancement through Technology) has played a pivotal role in the company’s marketing and direction in recent years. This technology first initiative has resulted in some of Audi’s most revered models including the Audi A8 as well as the R8 supercar. For 2017, the A4 sport sedan aims to fully embrace this mantra with new-found vigor. But can it still maintain the top notch driving experience that many buyers have come to expect? or has it been lost in the quest for progress?   The exterior styling of the A4 has always been known for being …

Read more Road Test Review 2017 Audi A4 2.0 T quattro S tronic – By Carl Malek

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Road Test Review: 2017 Dodge Charger SXT AWD – By Carl Malek

Dodge has been on a performance vehicle blitz the past few months. From unveiling the fire breathing Durango SRT, to the recent unveiling of the utterly bonkers Dodge Challenger Demon at the New York Auto Show, it’s no secret that the brand is going all in on its quest to nab performance minded enthusiasts. But with the slow selling Dodge Dart mercifully sent to the land of discontinued automobiles, can the 2017 Dodge Charger still draw in family buyers looking for a sedan that can haul occupants and cargo? While still allowing you to unleash your weekend warrior tendencies at the …

Read more Road Test Review: 2017 Dodge Charger SXT AWD – By Carl Malek

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2018 Chevrolet EQUINOX Premier – Road Test Review – By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman

Car manufacturers apparently do not use the same calendar as the rest of the world. I know this because I found myself in Asheville, North Carolina last month — before the end of the first quarter of 2017 — road testing the new 2018 Chevrolet Equinox. I’m not sure why they time-shift like this, but I guess the folks at Chevy thought this new groundup re-make was so good, they just couldn’t wait to get it into customer’s garages.  And after spending the day with the new Equinox, I can say that they’ll have a lot of happy customers. In 2016, compact crossover …

Read more 2018 Chevrolet EQUINOX Premier – Road Test Review – By Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman

Road Test Review – 2017 Toyota Corolla XSE – By Carl Malek

When we last met the Toyota Corolla back in 2016, we loved its compact size, improved styling, as well as its high value for the money ratio. However, we pulled no punches when it came to its lackluster performance hardware, especially its fussy manual gearbox. With the arrival of the 2017 Corolla, Toyota promises new things for its venerable compact offering. But can the Corolla’s suite of updates help it stand up to a growing wave of compact competition? Or will it still get left in the dust once again? The exterior styling of our XSE grade tester certainly makes a …

Read more Road Test Review – 2017 Toyota Corolla XSE – By Carl Malek

2017 Toyota RAV4 Platinum – Road Test Review – By Carl Malek

With all the new entries that have entered the compact SUV segment over the past few years, it is easy to forget about one of the pioneers in this hotly contested segment, the Toyota RAV4. Designed to bring a compelling blend of safety, versatility, and value to a segment that was in its infancy at the time. The RAV4 would emerge as one of the leading compact SUV entries on the market, while also proving to be a huge sales success for Toyota at the same time, but can the current generation RAV4 confidently follow in the tire tracks of …

Read more 2017 Toyota RAV4 Platinum – Road Test Review – By Carl Malek

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Road Test Review: 2017 Kia Niro EX – By Carl Malek

Its not too often that we encounter a new vehicle that manages to hit that proverbial sweet spot between practicality, efficiency, and, style. While many vehicles out on the market strive to achieve this deceptively difficult feat, very few succeed. Kia aims to change all that with the 2017 Kia Niro a CUV that not only aims to bring style to the green vehicle segment, but also underpins an all new green car platform for both Kia and Hyundai.     The exterior styling of our Metal Stream hued EX grade tester was a tasteful blend of style and practicality. …

Read more Road Test Review: 2017 Kia Niro EX – By Carl Malek

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2017 Genesis G80 5.0 Ultimate – Road Test Review – By Ben Lewis

Heads up: you need to be on the lookout for 5-0. In this case, it’s not Steve McGarrett and his task force careening around on Oahu. It’s a luxury sedan from Hyundai’s newly-minted Genesis division, and in this case, it’s looking to take on the existing marks including the highly-prized BMW 5-series. And you know what? We might opt for the G. It’s that good. First, some housekeeping. The name Genesis has been around for a bit. In 2009, we had the first Hyundai Genesis sedan, and then it was freshened up for 2015. For 2017, though, the Hyundai has been …

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Road Test Review – 2016 Toyota 4Runner Trail Premium – By Carl Malek

In an era where CUVs and even full size SUVs are embracing car based platforms as their underlying DNA, the 2016 Toyota 4Runner is a compelling glimpse into an era when pickup based SUVs ruled the roads both on and off the beaten path. With its sole rival the Nissan Xterra being discontinued last year, the 4Runner is one of the few remaining stalwarts in a shrinking market segment. But does its blend of capability, size, and utility still allow it to stand out against rivals? or has the passage of time finally caught up to Toyota’s off road bruiser? …

Read more Road Test Review – 2016 Toyota 4Runner Trail Premium – By Carl Malek

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Road Test Review – 2016 Chrysler 300 Limited – By Tim Esterdahl

Review: 2016 Chrysler 300 Limited Offers Lots of Value Celebrating its 90th year of production, the 2016 Chrysler 300 Limited AWD could just be the best value ever offered in the large sedan. Our test model came in at just under $40k and it is LOADED. For the 2016 Chrysler 300 90th Anniversary Edition, there is more standard equipment than ever offered before. For example, the Limited edition comes standard with an 8.4” Uconnect system with navigation, SiriusXM Traffic and Travel Link, plus a spectacular dual-pane sunroof and unique commemorative appointments. Chrysler says the Limited edition is the most “well-appointed …

Read more Road Test Review – 2016 Chrysler 300 Limited – By Tim Esterdahl

Road Test Review – 2016 Ford Explorer Platinum with Tim Esterdahl

Review: 2016 Ford Explorer Platinum – Fully Loaded SUV Goodness As the leader of the SUV market, the all-new 2016 Ford Explorer has big shoes to fill. Fortunately, Ford filled the Explorer Platinum with an almost absurd of luxury features making sure it not only hits all the marks, but it blows customers away. Simply put, it feels like a luxury SUV and that is precisely the point. The new Explorer is an evolution of where the SUV has been heading in the past few years and for this recent iteration, Ford really went after the design. There is new …

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HD First Drive Review – 2015 Audi A3 1.8T Sedan

 The Audi A3 family is pretty massive for 2015 – with the new sedan just the first in the offensive that will include the A3/S3 Cabrio, A3 Sportback and Sportback Hybrid, an S3 sedan and even the Q3 mini SUV. So there is a lot riding on this compact exec’s shoulders – not least a worry that it might be overpriced and under-amazing. But that is not the case in the slightest. What we discovered after flogging Audi’s latest machine around Lake Lanier, Georgia last week is a fun, peppy car with outstanding driving characteristics, very intuitive steering, and a …

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Road Test Review – 2015 Lincoln MKC AWD with Ken Glassman

2015 Lincoln MKC AWD Review by Ken “Hawkeye” Glassman The Lincoln brand has been trying to find itself and find its place in the market for years now. They have produced some fine vehicles, but their focus has been a bit blurry. They need to appeal to younger buyers who for years have only considered German or Japanese luxury brands as being the real deal. But this compact crossover may be just the vehicle to boost the Lincoln cachet, and puts the brand on a path to growth and prosperity. The MKC has handsome, sophisticated exterior styling, performs well , …

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HD Road Test Review – 2015 Nissan JUKE Nismo RS Manual

Imagine a core group of Nissan GT-R engineers, drivers and designers set loose on the Nissan Juke NISMO. Task? Take the quickest and most performance-focused crossover, and make it truly track-tight in every way. That is how the Juke Nismo RS came into this world — with astounding results. The speed, style and drive experience of the Nismo RS is absolutely incredible versus its $28k competitors — and even versus pricier cars like the AMG GLA45, WRX or Mustang EcoBoost. The Juke Nismo RS is incredibly focused from first sitting in its racing Recaro hard-back bucket seats. A pair of …

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Road Test Review – 2015 Nissan Altima 2.5SL is a Serene, Mile-Munching Machine!

Midsize sedans might not be the sexiest or most desirable segment of the new car market, but they are the gasoline for the American automobile market’s engine. Taken together with pickup trucks, these two body styles of vehicle make up more than a third of all sales annually. The Altima is a big player in this mix: ranking number three behind the Camry and Accord for a whopping 2014 total of 335,000 sold. However you slice it, that is a huge chunk of influence, and a car that many will consider when seeking their next ride. And to wrap up …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Nissan Altima 2.5SL is a Serene, Mile-Munching Machine!

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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 …

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Best of Awards – 2015 Dodge Charger R/T Scat Pack in B5 Blue Is Goliath Giant-Killer

The 2015 Dodge Charger is a focused update and improvement — maintaining the giant cabin, huge power options and enhancing it up and down the nine-model range. The SRT Hellcat and its 707HP supercharged HEMI is hoovering up most of the headlines so far, buttwo questions before lusting after just the Hellcat: — Is that engine the biggest upgrade in creating such a comfortable and tech-savvy new full-size car? — And more importantly, is the Hellcat and its $64,000 base price, 204-mph Vmax and 3.7-second sprint to 60-mph the true sweet spot of the range? First, the biggest advantage of …

Read more Best of Awards – 2015 Dodge Charger R/T Scat Pack in B5 Blue Is Goliath Giant-Killer

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HD Road Test Review – 2015 Chevrolet Colorado Z71

2015 Chevrolet Colorado Z71 ReviewINTRO Once or twice a decade, a new car or truck will come out and be so good, so likeable and so well-done that it can make all the other OEMs think hard about matching it. In the case of mid-size pickup trucks, that incredible new car is the 2015 Chevrolet Colorado. In a segment that has been in the doldrums for a least five years, the new Colorado is good enough to have Ford and Ram scratching their heads — reviewing old emails with a search heading of “Ranger” or “Dakota.”  Why did we cancel …

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MEGA Road Test Review – 2015 Toyota Camry SE Hybrid

2015 Toyota Camry SE Hybrid Review At the new Camry’s launch event in Florida last Fall, we were very surprised to hear the best-seller’s recent powertrain sales mix. With such a gem of a 3.5-liter V6 available and pushing sprint times to the low 6’s, that would be our choice Monday through Sunday. And such a smooth and effortless hybrid available too, with almost no downsides except a very-slightly smaller trunk? These two premium powertrains have recently each pulled just 10-percent of overall sales each, with the base four-cylinder hoovering up 80-percent of the overall mix. Surprising to us as …

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2015 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Z71

HD Road Test Review – 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Z71 is 200k-Mile, 2025 TOTY

2015 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Z71 Review Spending a week in this Ocean Blue Chevy Silverado is enough to make anyone a truck guy. Effortless capability and strength have always been key elements of the Silverado, and continue for 2015 — even as the rest of the truck becomes far more tech-savvy, comfortable and fun-to-drive. The Z71 LTZ 1500 trim of the test truck brings the best style and equipment to the table, and really helps show the Silverado in its best light. The upgraded cabin for 2015 is packed with cool goodies: some standard like the 4G LTE wi-fi, and …

Read more HD Road Test Review – 2015 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Z71 is 200k-Mile, 2025 TOTY

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HD Road Test Review – 2014 Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG S-Model

Updated 1.5.2015 With 63 New Photos   When it comes to the rarest of Mercedes-Benz AMG cars and trucks, the S-Models are the absolute top of the pops. And the E63 AMG S-Model 4Matic Estate? The ultimate in rare supercars – the S-Model Estate is certainly up there with the most-exclusive cars available. By our estimates, fewer than 200 total S-Model E63 AMGs will come to the United States per year, but even one is a huge blessing.   The E63 Estate is just one click slower to 60-mph than the S-Model sedan. That makes this the 3.6-second wagon king. …

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Road Test Review – 2015 Kia K900 V8 – By Ken Glassman

  2015 Kia K900 Review By Ken Glassman For 2015 Kia has jumped into the high end luxury sedan market with the K900, just as their sister company Hyundai has done with the Equus. In fact, both cars share the same basic platform, and mission statement. That is – to build a high quality automobile, stuff it with a long list of standard safety, and luxury appointments and amenities, and offer it at a price that is thousands of dollars less than similarly equipped German, Japanese, and even American luxury brands. Under the long hood, you’ll find a muscular 5.0 …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Kia K900 V8 – By Ken Glassman

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Road Test Review – 2015 Toyota Sienna XLE Brings All-New Infotainment and Fresh Comfort Upgrades

On the way to test out the 2015 Sienna, we traveled by Sienna! Our chariot of 2014 Sienna SE offered a great basis point to evaluate the 2015 model’s improvements. Let’s dive in with the usual format of Exterior, Interior, Performance and Summary. We have split each segment into Sienna XLE and Sienna SE portions, in hopes of offering a good idea of what both offer families – highlighting relevant differences between the two. EXTERIOR Sienna XLE There are subtle style changes outside around front and back. The SE and Limited Sienna’s benefit from some classy LED accents in the …

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Road Test Review – 2014 Toyota Sienna SE Is The Ultimate High-Speed Q-Ship

When you think of minivans, the sportiest one available might seem like a dumb question. I mean, what is the point of having huge power on demand when you are likely to have a car full of kids? After a week rocking the 2014 Sienna SE to Ponte Vedra, Florida and back for the Camry rollout, we became seriously attached to the Sienna’s easy highway manners and friendly city maneuverability. Without a variety of kids and 1000-pounds of toys in the eight-passenger Sienna SE, we can tell you that this is the sportiest van of them all. Standard format of …

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Road Test Review – 2015 Buick LaCrosse V6 Premium Is Deceptively Sporty and Extremely Luxurious

Quick: name the best large sedan on the market for less than $50,000? Requirements for consideration are a huge back seat, width to never touch elbows with front passengers and all-day cruising comfort. Because you are a keen driver and love a great curving road, let’s add mountain road poise to the list. We are not considering luxury cars like the BMW 5 series, Audi A6 and Mercedes-Benz C or E-Classes — they are too small in the back seat. The immediate group of competitors with these prerequisites are: the Hyundai Azera, Lincoln MKS, Toyota Avalon, Kia Cadenza and perhaps …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Buick LaCrosse V6 Premium Is Deceptively Sporty and Extremely Luxurious

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HD Road Test Review – 2015 Cadillac Escalade Luxury AWD – Long Live The King

INTRO   The 2015 Cadillac Escalade is the ultimate in look-good, feel-good luxury SUVs. After a week driving the Escalade around Georgia and the Carolinas, we really came to love the big truck and never ceased to be amazing by its performance and tech achievements in this fourth-generation model. For many years of the first three generations of Escalade, SUV buyers seemed to bow down to the king Caddy for its prestige appeal — with the actual changes and upgrades from the Denali seeming less-than-complete. The risk of paying the Cadillac premium is that car-guys might see through the blingy …

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Road Test Review – 2014 Toyota RAV4 XLE AWD

   2014 Toyota RAV4 XLE AWD Review     By Ken Glassman Way back in 1996, Toyota introduced the RAV4 as a small sport utility vehicle that was something different than a stodgy station wagon. It provided the cargo carrying capacity of a wagon, comfort for 4 adults (and a fifth in a pinch), and was fuel efficient and high quality. It was a boxy and homely, but it quickly became the formula for other manufacturers to emulate. It wasn’t an exciting vehicle to drive, but its utilitarian function won over a generation of drivers. Today the 2014 RAV4 is …

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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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HD Road Test Review – 2015 Toyota Camry XSE Is FAST and QUIET!

  Fast and Quiet? Yep. A variation on Fast ‘n’ Loud is what most sedan shoppers actually prefer in their daily drivers, and the Camry XSE nails these benchmarks better than any other mid-size sedan. INTRO Can you imagine how tough the Camry is on competing cars like the Accord and Fusion? As far as we see it, the Camry gets better and better every year — without one slot in the armor of this best-seller to sneak an arrow through? The only area where the previous Camry let its competition get some ideas was with the overall exterior design, …

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Road Test Review – 2014 Lexus GS350 AWD Is Quick And Balanced with Killer 835W Audio System

By Special Contributor Ken Glassman Photos Include the 2015 GS350 F Sport Crafted Line EXTERIOR Refreshed in 2013, the Lexus GS350 remains about the same for the 2014 model year. For whatever reason, the mid-size Lexus has never been a great selling model, maybe because it goes up against some stiff competition from the European models like the Audi A6, Mercedes E-Class, BMW’s 5-Series, and even the excellent Cadillac CTS. But the GS350 and its GS hybrid cousin are still very fine automobiles, and should appeal to anyone looking for a mid-size luxury car.     The power comes from …

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Road Test Review – 2015 Toyota Avalon Hybrid

Like any project, the ones you are passionate about are far easier to do quickly and with great results. Alternatively, the ones where there is tough news to deliver can sit on the back burner for far longer than is ideal. And so it is with car reviews – even week-long press loaner reviews that are usually top-priority. There are great updates to the latest Avalon and Avalon Hybrid, including the exterior style, interior tech and great efficiency. But there are also serious areas where the new Avalon Hybrid neither delivers the cushy ride of the old model — nor …

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4K Road Test Review – 2015 Ford Transit 3.5L EcoBoost LWB, Low-Roof Cargo Van

Breaking News: NASCAR developing 2018 commercial van racing series. The NASVAN Home Depot Cup will feature the Ford Transit, Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, Chevy Express, Nissan NV and the Ram ProMaster. Each van will hit top speeds of more than 199-mph while they trade paint around circuits like the legendary Charlotte and Atlanta Motor Speedways….””” The news above is pretend. There are no current plans for a NASVAN series. But if there were, we could sign up for the new Ford Transit as our ride first time, every time. This rear-drive big van is shockingly good on the road and at the …

Read more 4K Road Test Review – 2015 Ford Transit 3.5L EcoBoost LWB, Low-Roof Cargo Van

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Road Test Review – 2015 Mercedes-Benz C300 4Matic Sport is Smooth, Sexy and Classy

The Mercedes-Benz C-Class is moving up in both desirability and style for 2015. The 2015 C300 and C400 models both pack turbocharged engines and 4Matic AWD as standard for the US market, and the pricing moves up the scale noticeably as well. But as a quick spin in the C300 4Matic Sport with the LED Lighting and Airmatic suspension packages shows, this is a Benz that is the best of all worlds. In many ways, the new C-Class goes back to the roots of Mercedes brand strengths. It is fast but ultra-luxurious. It ride like a dream but can hold …

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Road Test Review – 2014 Lincoln MKZ 3.7 AWD Is Stylish, Sporty and Futuristic!

The Lincoln MKZ is easily the best Lincoln this author has ever driven. Outstanding design and technology features make the MKZ stand apart from anything else coming out of Detroit this decade, and getting to know the new Lincoln over a week was endlessly surprising. This car handles with a fantastic AWD balance of my personal Subaru Legacy GT, carries a charming and unique design that is cutting-edge and futuristic unlike anything else on the road. Dozens of preconceptions went out the ultra-sleek moonroof as we cruised to Atlanta with the Active Cruise engaged, the massage seats on full blast, …

Read more Road Test Review – 2014 Lincoln MKZ 3.7 AWD Is Stylish, Sporty and Futuristic!

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Road Test Review – 2014 Lexus IS350C F Sport – Convertible Coupe Perfection?

The market for cabrios hit the skids hard during the financial crisis, when any wind in your hair seemed suddenly too-lavish, and too-decadent. Even luxury shoppers pulled back during that unprecedented stock market decline. This makes sense: those in the market were the most exposed to big on-paper losses. As such, it was a pretty inopportune time for Lexus to launch its best-ever convertible: the ISC. This amazing machine entered a soft market with competition from the all-star BMW 3 (and now 4 series) droptop, as well as the better-sounding Infiniti G37 (now Q60) Convertible. So what has Lexus done? …

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Road Test Review – 2015 Chrysler 200C AWD Is Solid Drive with Potent V6 and Swanky Cockpit

  By Ken Glassman A few months ago, I had the chance to spend about 20 minutes in the new Chrysler 200C, and I liked it very much. Now after spending a week with the car, I can confidently say that it will be my choice for Car of the Year. And I suspect that it will garner many votes from journalists for that title. It’s that good. The first generation of 200 sedans was offered in 2011, and were a good improvement over the Sebring models it replaced. But these new 200 sedans, labeled as 2015 models, takes the …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Chrysler 200C AWD Is Solid Drive with Potent V6 and Swanky Cockpit

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2015 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Convertible Updated with New 8-Speed Automatic + Pacific and Atlantic Packages

Updated 8.20.14 Chevrolet has just announced an updated powertrain for the 2015 Corvette Convertible: a new eight-speed automatic transmission adds two gears and improves sprint pace for this incredibly impressive drop-top. This is in addition to the new-for-2015 Pacific track pack for the coupe and Atlantic aero pack for the convertible (special package details below). Good additions all around! PACIFIC ATLANTIC 2015 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Convertible   INTRO I am the biggest Corvette Stingray “convert” for this C7 generation – a true believer these days. This is coming from someone who has long scoffed at the Corvette, even as the …

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Road Test Review – 2015 Acura TLX 2.4L Is Seriously Good Fun: Quick, Lux and Nimble

Just like delivering a compliment is easy and second-nature, writing a good car’s review is remarkably easy and refreshing. It feels great to give praise, and the words come flowing out. Alternatively – delivering bad news tactfully in a car review requires much more graceful delivery. You must plan your points carefully so they are constructive and helpful. The 2015 Acura TLX firmly falls into the easy compliment category. Say what you will — and what I have written — about the Acura nose in the last few years: this 2015 TLX absolutely blew me away with its amazing combination …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Acura TLX 2.4L Is Seriously Good Fun: Quick, Lux and Nimble

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Road Test Review – 2014 Honda Civic EX-L Coupe Is Sharp-Looking Two-Door With Great Tech and Handling!

  Racy coupe bodies are about as hot as it gets up and down the automotive spectrum. A two-door tells the world you are unattached – and unburdened by kids or carpools. You are single and ready to mingle! The Honda Civic Coupe is one of the most adored nameplates in the youth car culture scene. Last year’s 2013 Civic Coupe has lost is austere nose from 2013 and come back stronger, better, faster and cooler for 2014. This brings an all-new nose design with some aggressive profiling and chrome-accented foglamps, a dark grille slash in semi-gloss black widening the …

Read more Road Test Review – 2014 Honda Civic EX-L Coupe Is Sharp-Looking Two-Door With Great Tech and Handling!

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Road Test Review – 2014 Honda Accord Coupe V6 is Family Sports Coupe of the Year

As you can see from this first video – taken moments after I first sat down in the Accord Coupe – the car is really fun and fast. That is the key take-away if you read nothing else below! INTRO I thoroughly enjoyed the 2014 Honda Accord V6 Coupe that spent a few weeks here this summer. Two previous articles followed the Accord Coupe’s adventures here in the Carolinas, with… — a mega photo shoot from historic Charleston — as well as the Great Smokey Mountains National Park and Blue Ridge Parkway up toward Tennessee. And this really hones in …

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Off-Road Test Review – 2014 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk On Some Tough and Rocky Trails!

Update1 – Off-roading the Trailhawk! The Jeep Cherokee’s styling hit me like a kick from a horse when first glimpsed earlier this year.   I took to Twitter to say some less-than-encouraging things about its new appearance. Luckily, using Twitter is like throwing effort into a well – hopefully no one noticed… I’m actually very relieved to report four things about the 2014 Cherokee: – Optional 271-horsepower V6 engine with nine-speed auto and available 4WD promises a fun and powerful truck – Nose looks good on highways and in real life, LEDs visually widen car. The red trailhawk tow hooks …

Read more Off-Road Test Review – 2014 Jeep Cherokee Trailhawk On Some Tough and Rocky Trails!

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Update1 – Road Test Review – $32k 2015 Audi A3 Sedan 1.8T FWD

Updated 6.23.14 with 40 New Photos 2015 Audi A3 Sedan Review  The Audi A3 family is pretty massive for 2015 – with the new sedan just the first in the offensive that will include the A3/S3 Cabrio, A3 Sportback and Sportback Hybrid, an S3 sedan and even the Q3 mini SUV. So there is alot riding on this compact exec’s shoulders – not least the expectation that it might be overpriced and under-amazing. But that is not the case in the slightest. What we discovered after flogging Audi’s latest machine around Lake Lanier, Georgia last week is a fun, peppy …

Read more Update1 – Road Test Review – $32k 2015 Audi A3 Sedan 1.8T FWD

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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 …

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Road Test Review – 2014 Mercedes-Benz E550 Cabriolet – Buyers Guide to Specs, Pricing and Equipment

      Here are some road testing videos I took near Autobahn Country Club in Illinois last September. This car is surprisingly-awesome Some full-throttle sprints are included in the last two videos. Part One: Leaving the Gates Part Two: Spotting a 2015 Chevrolet Suburban. Look Closely Near Middle of Video…! Part Three: Quick Sprint Demonstration Optional LED Star 2014 Mercedes-Benz E550 Cabriolet – Exterior Gallery 2014 Mercedes-Benz E550 Cabriolet – Interior Gallery 2014 Mercedes-Benz E550 Cabriolet – Details from MBusa.com

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Road Test Review – 2014 KIA Soul Exclaim is Funky/Practical – With A Dash Of Cool and Calm

Written by Special Contributor Ken Glassman   When the Kia Soul first came out in 2010, I was fairly ambivalent about their boxy little Tonka Toy. It was an efficient use of interior space and a ho-hum performing little econobox. But for 2014 the Soul has been re-done and greatly improved. And model I tested was the Soul !. (the exclamation point after Soul is designated as the “Exclaim” trim level – the most upscale model they offer.) The Soul + (called the “Plus” trim level sits in the middle above the Base model) And this 2014 Exclaim model has …

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Road Test Review – 2014 Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG S-Model Estate is 3.6-Second Wagon!

INTERIOR GoPro Review Info – Part One   When it comes to the rarest of Mercedes-Benz AMG cars and trucks, the S-Models are the absolute top of the pops. But the E63 AMG S-Model 4Matic Estate? Perhaps the ultimate in rare supercars – the S-Model Estate is certainly up there with the most-exclusive cars available. By our estimates, fewer than 200 total S-Model E63 AMGs will come to the United States per year, which is a crying shame. The E63 Estate is just one click slower to 60-mph than the S-Model sedan. That makes this the 3.6-second wagon king. The …

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Road Test Review – 2014 Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG 4Matic Sedan Is Speedboat From Heaven

Have you ever driven a car that was so incredibly outstanding that it made you want to weep? Made you spring out of bed, head into work early — and stay late? Study harder, analyze better, deliver results and achieve excellence among your peers? It is easy to slip into fatalism — saying, “I will never have enough money to own a car like that.” Or, “Without X, Y or Z — owning a car like that is simply an impossible dream, for me.” I am here today with the 2014 Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG to slap your silly face. The …

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Off-Road Test Review – 2014 Subaru XV Crosstrek Hybrid is Surprisingly Silent + Very Capable

As shown by the Toyota 4Runner off-roading article earlier this week, we know I am a total wimp when it comes to off-roading. Despite my grand ambitions to be a Bowler Wildcat-running mudder in my own 2005 Subaru Legacy GT — all efforts to date have seriously damaged the car. I am on my fourth set of wheels, for example. But what would even lead me to take my beloved Subie off-road? One word: grip. The Subaru AWD system is seriously unflappable. In wintertime this year, I was fortunate enough to have a 2WD Chevy Silverado press loaner in my …

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2014 Bentley Continental GT V8 S – Road Test Review of AMG and BMW’s New Daddy

Does anyone else recall the Fox TV network’s endless promo’s many years ago for that crappy show called Wife Swap? “Meet your new mommy!” the announcer crowed over video of the horrified children — shocked that their parents would sign up for this reality-show charade? That is my face now as I say to myself, “Wow, meet the new luxury supercar ‘Daddy.’” The Bentley Continental GT has faced many harsh critiques over the years it has dominated its market segment – criticized even while selling so many that it defined what a modern, successful Bentley Cars Ltd should be in …

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Road Test Review – 2014 Acura MDX SH-AWD Is Premium and Posh 7-Seat Cruiser

Let’s say you are on a road trip. But you are in the back seat! Ahhh! You are not just a grown-up like Tom Hanks in BIG. You are just a large, tired human. Best stretch-out-comfy cabin this side of Singapore Airlines A380 Business Class? The Acura MDX. New for this year, the MDX really excels in its smooth, confident and quiet luxury crossover mission. This is a car for people who need to feel fewer jabs in the ribs in general — let alone paying the a German SUV to bounce you around choppy pavement. For these shoppers, the …

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2014 Hyundai Genesis Coupe 3.8L V6 – Road Test Review of FAST and FUN RWD Sportscar

Does something or someone become more beautiful the more you love it? I think we all know that the answer is: Yes. Such were my feelings after driving the 2014 Hyundai Genesis Coupe 3.8. Coming home, I find some of the most stunning photos and time-consuming angles of any car in recent memory – and the car is looking stellar. Sporty, lightweight, expensive and fast – but most of all, bright red. Was I so smitten that I kept snapping away long after I had the basics for a road test review? It would clearly seem that way. After all, …

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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 …

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Track Lap and Road Test Review – 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Convertible 3LT Z51

INTRO I am the biggest Corvette Stingray “convert” for this C7 generation – I am a true believer. This is coming from someone who has long scoffed at the Corvette, even as the ZR-1 blazed back to reality in recent years. I just was stuck with the old thoughts of perves driving the 1980s cars, or old fat men driving the 1990s cars. But then I got some time behind the wheel of the coupe in October 2013, and it all changed. I was like a man who had found sportscar God. Eager to tell friends and strangers alike how …

Read more Track Lap and Road Test Review – 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Convertible 3LT Z51

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2014 Honda Odyssey Touring Elite – Road Test Review – Luxury King for Van Man Dads on Road Trips

The Honda Odyssey Touring Elite is quite a machine – it brings much of the smooth ride and cabin silence of a luxury car into the jumbo van segment, where it has led the sales charts for the last decade or more. Many think it is the Chrysler and Dodge vans that are the best-sellers, but that is only true when their total numbers are combined. Individual nameplate-wise, the Odyssey and the Toyota Sienna are neck-and-neck to lead the race, trading spots infrequently but keeping the Honda name as a leader in vans. This supremacy of the Odyssey is well-known …

Read more 2014 Honda Odyssey Touring Elite – Road Test Review – Luxury King for Van Man Dads on Road Trips

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HD Video Road Test Review – 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit V6 – Outstanding … But Cramped and Poor Value-for-Money

Overall, as the video above shows and tells  – the 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit is an incredible achievement for Jeep and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles overall. It is extremely rigid in the platform, with zero quiver or body flex evident. This is probably the biggest change versus any other Jeep GC that has come before. Many of the piecemeal tech and equipment updates from across the FCA Group really come together exceptionally well for the Jeep Grand Cherokee. These include the new 3.6-liter V6 engine, the new eight-speed automatic transmission, a cabin quality unreachable before, and even some nice handling …

Read more HD Video Road Test Review – 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit V6 – Outstanding … But Cramped and Poor Value-for-Money

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Road Test Review – 2014 Ford Escape SE 1.6 EcoBoost – Scores a C+ Overall – Slow, Pricey and Uncomfortable

The Ford Escape is still an excellent crossover and a solid choice for a huge group of buyers – from the base $23,000 Escape S to the loaded Titanium AWD 2.0-liter EcoBoost, there is really something for everyone. But has time been kind to the Escape — in a segment filled with new entries like the Mazda CX-5, Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4 and Nissan Rogue? Let’s dive in with a structure of Exterior, Interior, Powertrain and Summary. EXTERIOR The style of the Escape still looks great even three years since the car’s first appearance on the market. It is a …

Read more Road Test Review – 2014 Ford Escape SE 1.6 EcoBoost – Scores a C+ Overall – Slow, Pricey and Uncomfortable

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MEGA Road Test Review – 2014 Lexus GX460 Driven Back-to-Back with 2015 Tahoe LTZ

INTRO For road testers as well as shoppers, there is a huge benefit in driving two considered vehicles back-to-back, with insights and detail differences coming to the surface that might not have been noticeable before. The closer the competition in terms of quality and specifications — the more critical it is to get a sense of each machine from the driver’s seat. Probably common sense, but a good reminder to myself nonetheless on my favorite aspect of any car magazine. So what did I notice coming right from the 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe into the Lexus GX460? Find out in the …

Read more MEGA Road Test Review – 2014 Lexus GX460 Driven Back-to-Back with 2015 Tahoe LTZ

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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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Road Test Review – 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe LTZ 4WD – 150 Photos and Four 1080P GoPro Videos

“…Come Mister Tallyman, TALLY ME BANANA… Daylight come and me wanna Tahoe…” INTRO: Is this bizarro-world where all is backwards? The 2015 Tahoe is vastly improved over the outgoing trucks in every single meaningful way. These four videos shot near Lake Lanier, Georgia last week are a testament to how smitten I was with the new Tahoe’s handling, chassis rigidity and quietness, interior overhaul and even the exterior style upgrade. But as we will outline below, there is some curious switching in the big SUV game. The Chevy’s interior is vastly superior to the Lexus GX460, but the Lexus costs …

Read more Road Test Review – 2015 Chevrolet Tahoe LTZ 4WD – 150 Photos and Four 1080P GoPro Videos

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Road Test Review – $32k 2015 Audi A3 Sedan Is Surprisingly Handsome, Modern and Fun to Flog!

 The Audi A3 family is pretty massive for 2015 – with the new sedan just the first in the offensive that will include the A3/S3 Cabrio, A3 Sportback and Sportback Hybrid, an S3 sedan and even the Q3 mini SUV. So there is alot riding on this compact exec’s shoulders – not least the expectation that it might be overpriced and under-amazing. But that is not the case in the slightest. What we discovered after flogging Audi’s latest machine around Lake Lanier, Georgia last week is a fun, peppy car with outstanding driving characteristics, very intuitive steering, and a contender …

Read more Road Test Review – $32k 2015 Audi A3 Sedan Is Surprisingly Handsome, Modern and Fun to Flog!

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Road Test Review – 2014 Mercedes-Benz E550 Cabriolet + Specs, Pricing and Options

2014 Mercedes-Benz E550 Cabriolet Review Here are some road testing videos I took near Autobahn Country Club in Illinois last September. This car is surprisingly-awesome Some full-throttle sprints are included in the last two videos. Part One: Leaving the Gates Part Two: Spotting a 2015 Chevrolet Suburban. Look Closely Near Middle of Video…! Part Three: Quick Sprint Demonstration Optional LED Star 2014 Mercedes-Benz E550 Cabriolet – Exterior Gallery 2014 Mercedes-Benz E550 Cabriolet – Interior Gallery 2014 Mercedes-Benz E550 Cabriolet – Details from MBusa.com

Three-Part HD Road Test Review + 60 Photos -- 2014 Chevrolet Captiva Sport LT -- Euro-Capable, High-Speed EconoCross!6

Three-Part HD Road Test Review + 60 Photos — 2014 Chevrolet Captiva Sport LT — Euro-Capable, High-Speed EconoCross!

These videos are pretty good!  I have worked hard to ‘up my game’ in terms of video production quality. Is this just a fancy way of saying: numerous camera mounts and a fresh GoPro Hero3+. But also a renewed focus on delivering high-quality, often humorous, and insightful expert automotive road tests. The results are now imminently high-quality, meaning a shower and perhaps a shave are definitely mandatory items before going in front of the 1080P lens. But while I highly recommend the GoPro Hero3+, what do I think of the 2014 Captiva Sport LT, which brings new-for-2014 touchscreen MyLink controls …

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BMW X1 sDrive28i M Sport - Alpine White in 60 High-Res Photos1

Road Test Review – 2014 BMW X1 sDrive28i M Sport – Alpine White

This summer’s 2013 BMW X1 sDrive28i press loaner still makes me smile when looking at the photos. As my first week-long loan from BMW, the pressure was on to a) write a brilliant review and b) not hurt the car in any way! The X1 is a hilarious riot to drive in 28i sDrive configuration, which denotes rear-wheel-drive versus the optional xDrive. The turbo-charged engine is zingy and potent, with a broad and low torque plateau and the exceptional ZF eight-speed automatic handling changes. The test car included EcoPro mode and automatic stop/start for stoplights and traffic. EcoPro mode really …

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