2018 Volkswagen Tiguan First Drive: The Tig Goes Big

June 23rd, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

In its attempt to court U.S. buyers, Volkswagen has tried on size big—the spacious, made-for-America versions of the Jetta and Passat sedans—and size tall—the Tiguan and Touareg SUVs. Both approaches have found mixed success on our shores. Now VW finally has figured out that we Americans like our cars big and tall. READ MORE ››

2017 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen, in Depth: The Family Golf

June 23rd, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

The Volkswagen Golf family is large and diverse, with a model for every life stage. Just starting out? Buy a Golf. Have a little money and a taste for fun? Buy a Golf GTI. A bigger budget and rally-driver tendencies might point you toward the all-wheel-drive Golf R. But what if you find yourself with a couple […]

2018 Alfa Romeo Stelvio First Drive: Mondo Italiano!

June 23rd, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

Tennessee’s Central Basin resembles the Italian Alps about as much as Kevin Bacon looks like actual bacon. But on our drive through the Volunteer State, the Alfa Romeo crossover named for the Continent’s iconic mountain pass transported us instead to a different European motoring mecca. Running southwest out of Nashville, the 444-mile Natchez Trace Parkway […]

2017 Jaguar XF: An In-Depth Review of Her Majesty’s Rare and Refined Luxury Mid-Size Sedan

June 22nd, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

The seductive XF exemplifies British tradition with its sophisticated style and refined road manners. The Jag’s design is as beautiful and aggressive as the carmaker’s feline namesake. Its agile chassis and compliant suspension deliver a calm, composed stiff-upper-lip driving character befitting royalty. An efficient diesel inline-four is the base engine; two potent and polished supercharged […]

2018 BMW 530d Touring Euro-Spec: More Unobtainium

June 22nd, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

Although they are a rare sight in the United States, in Europe, station wagons are a popular part of most manufacturers’ lineups. How that came about, at BMW at least, wasn’t via exhaustive market research but rather an after-hours project. Max Reisböck was the man responsible. READ MORE ››

Lightweight Middlemen: Chevrolet Colorado vs. Honda Ridgeline!

June 22nd, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

The only vehicle-segment descriptor in the automotive market that might be more amorphous than “crossover” is “mid-size pickup.” The mere mention of it has our own Don Sherman furiously scribbling numbers on scraps of paper, wild eyed and sweating. “There’s no such thing,” he growls. And, we must admit, he’s kind of right. Not about […]

2017 Chevrolet Trax: An In-Depth Look at Chevy’s Smallest SUV

June 21st, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

The crossover market has been flooded by a wave of subcompact SUVs, some of which pack an outsize personality into a small package. Not the Chevrolet Trax. Chevy’s littlest utility vehicle has bland styling and a lackluster engine, making it a middle-of-the-road choice among more interesting competitors. The Trax is worth considering given its solid […]

2018 Mercedes-Benz E-class Coupe First Drive: The Aesthete’s Choice

June 21st, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

“Would you like to upgrade to an ocean view?” When you hear that question, what’s really being asked is, how much do you value beauty? How you answer may just determine whether you’re a coupe customer or a sedan buyer. READ MORE ››

Boot, Scoot, Boogie: Mobility Scooters Compared!

June 21st, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

Mobility scooters are ubiquitous. At hot-rod shows, they fly in squadron formation with each pilot trailing a gray ponytail. Take your dog out for a constitutional and one will whiz by, forcing Fido off the sidewalk and into the gutter. Occasionally someone will get drunk, steal one, and drive it into a canal. Trader Joe’s […]

2019 Volkswagen Jetta: A Betta Jetta

June 21st, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

What It Is: After more than a half-dozen years on the market, Volkswagen’s sixth-generation Jetta is finally getting a well-deserved redesign. Although today’s Jetta has improved with age thanks to running changes such as an independent rear suspension, a wider availability of desirable infotainment features, and a host of powertrain improvements, Volkswagen’s compact sedan has […]

2018 Toyota Camry Driven: It’s Ready to Party—Really

June 21st, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

Ever since it arrived for 1983 as the first ever transverse-engine, front-wheel-drive Toyota, the Camry has been a sane, sensible family sedan. Over six succeeding generations, the Camry executed that mission so well that it became America’s best-selling passenger car—but also among its most boring. Now, however, company boss Akio Toyoda wants to banish boring, […]

2018 Honda Odyssey 10-speed Automatic Tested: With a Van Like This, Who Needs a Crossover?

June 20th, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

Take a good look at modern minivans and SUVs. The latest minivans have raised seating positions and increased towing capacities compared with their predecessors. Meanwhile, the latest crossover SUVs have adopted plusher rides, front-wheel-drive architectures, and spacious, family-friendly cabins. As these segments converge, it begs the question: What makes a minivan a minivan? Sliding doors? […]

2017 Mercedes-AMG E43: We Test This 21st-century Sedan in Depth and Marvel at Its Excellence

June 20th, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

This sophisticated sedan hits the sweet spot between high performance and high class. The Mercedes-AMG E43 has a lusty 396-hp twin-turbo V-6, a lively nine-speed automatic transmission, and all-wheel drive—all specially tuned by AMG, Mercedes-Benz’s well-respected performance division. Other standard AMG upgrades include a sharpened air suspension, custom wheel designs, and a unique aerodynamic kit. […]

2018 Ferrari 812 Superfast First Drive: Superfast Isn’t the Half of It!

June 20th, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

On one recent Saturday, I jumped out of an airplane. But that wasn’t the most exciting thing that happened that week. Because six days later, I drove the Ferrari 812 Superfast. In Italy, on Ferrari’s private race/test track in Fiorano. It was, in skydiver parlance, epic. The speeds were higher, the g loads greater, and […]

2017 Mini Cooper Countryman ALL4 1.5T Manual: Mini Gets Maxi

June 19th, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

Sir Alec Issigonis, the man responsible for the original Mini, surely never anticipated a Mini crossover SUV. Even so, he may have begrudgingly approved of BMW’s first crack at the Countryman variant, which, for all of its faults, drove like a plus-size Mini Cooper. The all-new Countryman, though, moves the needle even further away from […]

2018 Kia Stinger Driven: A First Taste of a Different Kind of Kia

June 19th, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

“Jenny, ich liebe dich!” The giant scrawl of graffiti flashed past the straining Kia Stinger on a wall somewhere around the Metzgesfeld bit of the Nürburgring Nordschleife, part of the endless spaghetti of scribble that decorates every inch of this crazy track. Jenny, wherever you are, we sure hope you appreciate the trouble your homeboy […]

2017 Toyota Prius Prime in Depth: New and Improved, Still Not a Chevrolet Volt

June 16th, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

The Prius Prime, all new for 2017, is a plug-in version of Toyota’s iconic Prius with a larger battery that enables an EPA-rated 25 miles of electric-only driving, a slew of standard active safety technology, and a high-tech cabin. Its single powertrain is efficient but otherwise utterly joyless, and the Prius can’t manage even half […]

Ford F-150 Raptor 40,000-Mile Test Intro: The Beast Begins Its Stay

June 16th, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

When it comes to traversing Michigan potholes, there are two strategies. Most folks employ the balanced-human approach: Plod through the minefield carefully, taking it easy in hopes nothing gets bent. The second tactic requires more, well, let’s call it commitment. Every vehicle has a safe speed at which it will fly right over the craters, […]

2017 Nissan Versa Sedan Automatic Tested

June 15th, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

The last time we strapped our testing equipment to a Nissan Versa sedan was nearly half-a-dozen years ago, when Nissan’s subcompact four-door finished last in a six-car comparison test. Since then, the Versa underwent a mid-cycle update for the 2015 model year that brought a fresh front-end design, a reworked center stack, and a new […]

Brand Genesis: We Review the 2017 Genesis G80, in Depth

June 15th, 2017 Automotive, Uncategorized

Taking a page out of the Peter Gabriel playbook, the Hyundai Genesis has gone solo, using the surname Genesis to launch a new, um, band of luxury-vehicle players and adopting new given names for them. The G80 is one of two new Genesis models introduced in 2017. It intends to upset the premium mid-size sedan […]