The Truth About Cars » Road Tests The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Sun, 27 Jul 2014 20:45:49 +0000 en-US hourly 1 The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars no The Truth About Cars (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars » Road Tests BMW M235i Bests Corvette, 911 In Consumer Reports Road Testing Mon, 30 Jun 2014 12:00:17 +0000 BMW M235i HR 04

BMW’s M235i has earned the highest marks ever bestowed upon the German automaker’s lineup from Consumer Reports, while also besting the Porsche 911 and Chevrolet Corvette in road tests whose results were recently released online.

Bloomberg reports the coupe earned a 98 out of 100 in its road test, falling one point short of the all-time leaders, the Tesla Model S and Lexus LS460L. The 911 and Corvette, packing more firepower with less comfort than the M235i, earned 95 and 92 out of 100 in their respective road tests.

Deputy editor Jon Linkov proclaimed the M235i a “dual-purpose car” that anyone “could drive to work every day of the week” without leaving the driver in pain, followed by a weekend at the track taking on the likes of the 911 and Corvette. He added that this particular BMW “has almost a direct lineage” to BMWs of the past that lived up to the marketing of “Ultimate Driving Machine.”

Neither of the trio were recommended by the publication, however, as the BMW and the Corvette were too new for reliability reports, while the 911 has below average reliability according to those surveyed.

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Steel Wheels: The Baser-Than-Base Dacia Duster Gets A Review Tue, 07 May 2013 11:00:00 +0000 It's very round. Picture courtesy Hooniverse.

Readers of TTAC’s Facebook account know that our luxury-and-performance-car-scribe Alex Dykes currently has his hands on the newest Mercedes CLS63 AMG. One of Mr. Dykes’ current concerns is the fact that the $140,000 Mercedes has no “next track” button on the steering wheel. He has a real point there: that’s one of just six buttons that my 2009 Town Car does have on its steering wheel. Of course, the first thing I did when I took delivery of the Town Car was to swap the head unit for a all-in-one Pioneer thingy. So now that button doesn’t work.

But away from the world of six-digit Benzos and the most delightful cream-color-interior Panthers, there’s a little thing called the Real World. No, not the MTV show! The other Real World! And Hooniverse has its fingers on the pulse.

This week, Chris Haining reviewed the Dacia Duster 1.6 Access 4×2. This vehicle, as far as I can tell, is a sort of super-cheap Honda CR-V, retailing for the rough equivalent of $11,000 and offering more space than the aforementioned CR-V and more equipment that the Plymouth Horizon America. It has a high ground clearance for the unimproved roads you’re sure to encounter and there’s very little to go wrong:

It is a utility vehicle. It has acres of space in the cabin and the boot, the interior is easily cleaned- in fact I’d probably get rid of the carpets and fit rubber mats to facilitate interior detailing via jet-wash. It’s a car that makes itself useful in so many ways. Though it doesn’t have four wheel drive, it does have high ground clearance and good visibility for gentle off-road excursions. And, crucially, it’s cheap. Ridiculously cheap, in fact, at £8,995 on the road for the car you see before you.

It’s assembled in Mioveni, Romania, just a short trip through Hungary away from the place where they would prefer not to be bothered with the assembly of the super-prestigious Bentley “Catamite GT” SUV. It seems difficult to believe that in an era where we permit China to make lead-reinforced toys for our children to chew at their leisure that such a thing could not be snuck through the EPA/DOT foolishness somehow.

Such a vehicle might not impress anyone, but it might be just the ticket for the casualties-of-the-disappearing-middle-class, God-and-guns working families who are currently bearing their twin duties of producing the next generation of American-imperialism cannon fodder and greeting their neighbors at Wal-Mart with all the dignity and aplomb they can muster. This thing has to be a better bet than a six-year-old Odyssey with a smoking transmission, right?

Alternately, it could be marketed as the next Cross Lander. Romanian luxury for the discerning few who wear Hublot Big Bangs and Tommy Hilfiger clothing. I can see the TV commercial now:

Our scene starts in the California wine country. An attractive couple in tight focus is driving an SUV. SHE is behind the wheel, smiling through recently Invisaligned teeth. HE is in the passenger seat, gazing at her with beatific beta bliss and holding his IPhone lovingly in both hands. As the DACIA DUSTER PRESTIGE sweeps down the road, with the most recently-built Napa mansions visible in the distance…

VOICEOVER: The Dacia Duster SUV. If your parents didn’t get out of high school, you’ll easily confuse this with a 1970 Range Rover.


Well, it could work. In the meantime, check out the ‘Verse for the latest on this Romanian rat-trap, okay?

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Vintage Road Test: 1971 Mercury Marquis, Get Your Dramamine Ready! Tue, 15 Mar 2011 12:00:49 +0000
YouTube user Bajabusta has done us quite a service by uploading so many old Car & Track road tests from the late 1960s and early 1970s. We watched the ’72 Volkswagen 412 exhibit some scary trailing throttle oversteer last week, and now it’s time to watch a classic Detroit land yacht make its stately way around a test track.
As the C&T testers found, the ’71 Marquis was a dream during long highway drives, but totally out of its element when called upon to heave its vast bulk around a turn. Since this review was done before the 1973 OPEC embargo, no mention was made of the car’s no-doubt-execrable fuel economy.

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