Rare Rides Icons: The History of Kia's Larger and Full-size Sedans (Part XII)

In our last installment of Kia’s large sedan history, we took a look at the second generation Cadenza. With its second salvo at the likes of the Toyota Avalon and the Buick Lacrosse, Kia planned to capture the near-luxury sedan customer who cared about value. Unfortunately, the Cadenza didn’t excel at anything in particular, and failed to stand out against more established competition.


A similar story played out a few years before when Kia introduced the first full-size rear-drive luxury car it ever designed in-house. Called the K9 (Quoris or K900 elsewhere), the large sedan shared a platform with the new rear-drive Hyundai Equus. Both sedans were the flagship offerings at their respective brands. 


The Equus was flashy and almost American-inspired, while the K9 was conservative and understated. But it turned out a large and anonymous looking luxury car was not to the taste of most customers. Even in its home market, buyers vastly preferred the Equus and its large winged hood ornament. What was Kia to do?

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Acura ZDX Returning As Brand’s First EV

Acura has announced that its first electric vehicle will be called the ZDX – a model you might not remember if car spotting isn’t among your favorite hobbies. Introduced in 2009, the original came into being just as crossover vehicles were starting to become mainstream. But the ZDX remains an exceptionally rare bird due to it being considered an oddball in its own time. Acura only managed to move 3,200 units inside the U.S. during its first full year on sale. That also happened to be its best year by far and explains why the car was quietly killed off in 2013.

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QOTD: Is the Auto Show Media Preview Truly Dead This Time?

Next year's Geneva Motor Show is canceled, moving instead to Qatar. The media-preview day for the upcoming North American International Auto Show in Detroit is down to half a day -- it wasn't long ago that the festivities started Sunday night and carried through Tuesday or Wednesday.

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Report: Alfa Romeo Not Pleased With Dodge Over Hornet

Dodge just pulled back the curtain on its newest vehicle, the Hornet crossover, but there are already rumblings of discontent from other brands within the Stellantis family. Dodge based much of the Hornet’s underpinnings on the Alfa Romeo Tonale, a move many within the Italian brand are unhappy with.

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2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee L Review - Filling Niches And Climbing Over Them
Rare Rides Personas: Powel Crosley Junior, Tiny Cars, Radio, and Baseball (Part III)

We pick up our coverage of the life and times of Powel Crosley Jr. in 1916. At 30 years old, Crosley had a spouse of six years and two young children. He’d given up car-selling ventures in Indiana for a permanent return to his native land of Cincinnati. 


His experiences in car sales and hype in Indiana turned the inventor into a marketing man, and Crosley’s main source of income was ad copy. He did that in between short-lived side jobs at small local automotive companies (that all went bust). All the while Crosley kept one eye on the automobile market and took notice of just how common and numerous the automobile had become on American roads. It was almost time for a new car venture. 

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Surveys Suggest EV Owners Still Annoyed With Charging Infrastructure


There’s been an increase in reports of inoperable charging stations intended for EVs this year, with the data coinciding with J.D. Power’s annual Electric Vehicle Experience Public Charging Study. Despite EV sales continuing to climb, the survey showed that people are actually becoming less satisfied with charging stations overall. 

"Not only is the availability of public charging still an obstacle, but EV owners continue to be faced with charging station equipment that is inoperable," elaborated Brent Gruber, executive director of global automotive at J.D. Power.

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Dodge Charger Daytona SRT Concept: This EV Has an Exhaust System

Who else but Dodge could be trusted to design and patent an honest-to-Mopar exhaust system for an electric car? Hell-bent on the concept that their customers are intent on continuing their raucous ways long after the last internal combustion engine has gone silent, Dodge figures their target market wants to announce their presence instead of gliding silently into the room.


As someone smack in the middle of this demographic and holding the keys to a V8-powered Challenger,  I feel compelled to say they may have a point.


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QOTD: Do We Need More Off-Road Parks/Race Tracks/Drag Strips?


Yesterday, I argued that we need more off-road parks. And more race tracks. And more drag strips. All in the name of keeping the flame for automotive enthusiasm alive, as well as growing it.

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Opinion: We Need More Off-Road Parks (and Drag Strips, and Tracks…)

This past weekend, I went off-roading. I took a Ford Bronco Raptor I was testing to the Badlands Off-Road Park in Indiana (with Ford’s approval) because I felt that the Raptor needed to be taken off-road, if possible, for me to get a full picture of the vehicle’s capabilities ahead of a possible future review.

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Chinese Toyota Plant Runs Out of Electricity


Toyota has suspended operations at a factory in China because local authorities issued an order for the region to conserve electricity. Sichuan province is reportedly rationing energy for both residential and industrial zones, complicating things for manufacturers. Toyota has said that the plant is likely to be closed through Saturday — adding that it would be monitoring the situation and taking guidance from the Chinese government. But the issue could have sweeping ramifications because the area is also home to numerous part suppliers.


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QOTD: Do Automotive Executives Make Too Much?

Automotive News has a story out showing that for automaker bosses who have been in their position for at least two years, median pay has risen 90 percent since 2020.

The story is accompanied by a chart with salary numbers, and some of the numbers are staggering, even knowing that CEOs tend to be extremely well compensated in this day and age.


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That Stings: 2023 Dodge Hornet

The self-proclaimed muscle car brand is finally dipping a toe into the ultra-hot (and ultra-competitive) compact crossover market. It will launch as a 2023 model – the first new Dodge in recent memory, it should be noted – with the choice of a gasoline powerplant or a plug-in hybrid. 


And as part of the festivities, Dodge is bringing back a trio of consonants from their history books: GLH.


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Auto Lobby Warns EV Tax Credits Are Shrinking


With the automotive lobby having signaled its displeasure with some of the concessions made in the “Inflation Reduction Act” signed by President Joe Biden on Tuesday, the White House has said some 20 models will still qualify for electric vehicle tax credits of up to $7,500 through the end of 2022. However, that’s down roughly 70 percent from the number of models that could have ridden out the previous scheme, as the new content requirements have made most fully electric cars ineligible. 


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Rare Rides Icons: Lamborghini's Front-Engine Grand Touring Coupes (Part VIII)

We return to our Rare Rides Icons coverage of Lamborghini’s front-engine coupes at a moment of relative triumph. After three earlier design proposals failed to pass muster with Ferruccio Lamborghini, a fourth received approval and was chosen as the 400GT’s replacement. Part of an in-house collaborative effort between Mr. Lamborghini, Carrozzeria Marazzi, and Lamborghini’s engineers, the resulting coupe was sedate, elegant, and not that removed from the outgoing 400GT 2+2.

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  • Garrett They’ve basically screwed Alfa over. Nobody’s going to buy the Tonale. Also, the last Dodge compact vehicle was also a reworked Alfa.
  • Kip65688146 "Everyone is worried about the public stations, but why don't we focus on the low hanging fruit: home charging? "BAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!.............This guy gets it!I'll add current battery tech means EV's in their current state are not replacements for ICE Cars & trucks but make a good argument as 2rd or 3rd vehicles in mulit-car households which is hardly a niche market.
  • 2ACL Looking forward to the next part. I didn't like the first generation, but the second-generation was on my radar; I like the low-key, yet elegant styling, and the automotive media raved that the road-handling was significantly cleaned up from its nautical predecessor's. I'd still consider one if a replacement event unexpectedly befell my TL, but developments since have made that something of a long shot.
  • Deanst “Switching to EVs will be end of the Dodge brand. Nobody wants EVs.”Tesla, a brand which only sells EVs, is the number 1 luxury vehicle seller in America. But do go on…….
  • Randall Tefft Sundeen Oldsmobile was ALWAYS my favorite GM marque ! I remember as a kid you couldn't walk down the street without tripping on one! In 1977 and 1984 respectively olds sold. Million units, GM's second biggest seller as well as being the test brand for new options (Why take a risk with Cadillac?) The first CLUTCHLESS MANUAL , the first ELECTRIC POWER WINDOWS the first AUTOMATIC not to mention in 1974 the first airbag. Iam fortunate enough to live in a warm climate where old cars are plentiful sadly very few Oldsmobiles. Many features we take for granted were developed by this special brand