2022 Lexus RX450h AWD F Sport Review- How to Review a Good Car That You Kind of Hate

I want to be perfectly honest with you guys — this is The Truth About Cars, after all — I didn’t like driving the 2022 Lexus RX450h AWD F Sport. It’s not that the Lexus is a bad car, it’s that it’s not the right fit for me … and I mean that both figuratively and literally.

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2021 BMW M4 Competition Review - Heart Trumps Looks

Almost every automotive journalist and enthusiast I know hates the new BMW grille – the one that took the twin-kidney look and made it as bucktooth as a beaver.

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2022 Lexus NX 350 AWD Review - Getting with the Times

I’ve always had mixed feelings about Lexus’ NX compact crossover. I’ve found it to be fairly sporty – in general, and not just by staid Lexus standards – and overall more engaging to drive than the larger (and highly popular) RX, but also a bit cramped inside. Not to mention that the NX, like most Toyota and Lexus products, just seemed a step behind when it came to infotainment.

Lexus addressed two of those criticisms with the current model and did so quite nicely.

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Kia Wins Wards 'Best Interior' Award For EV6

Kia’s continual improvements are getting noticed by Wards Auto.

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2021 Honda Ridgeline AWD Sport HPD Review - Slightly More "Truck" Than Before

One of the things this author has always appreciated about the Honda Ridgeline is its car-like qualities. More than once, the phrase “Accord on stilts” has escaped my lips when talking about the Ridgeline with fellow auto scribes, and I meant it as a compliment.

Imagine my dismay to find that the refreshed 2021 Honda Ridgeline felt jussssst a bit more “trucky” than before.

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Rental Review: The 2020 Audi A5 Sportback, a Bit Damp

It’s a new week, and I’m back with another German car Rental Review for your enjoyment! Today’s rental is one of two American market entrants into the premium compact five-door liftback segment, and not a car one expects to find in an Enterprise lot. Presenting a 2020 Audi A5 Sportback, two years and 50,000 rental miles later.

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Rental Review: The 2021 BMW 530i XDrive, Interference at No Cost to You

As a fan of the midsize luxury sedan class, it’s sad to see how many manufacturers have given up on the segment. The German trio still has their stalwarts, but Japan gave up in 2020 (RIP Lexus GS), the only American still in the ring is the Cadillac CT5, and its outlier status is accompanied by newcomer Genesis with the G80.

It’s a dying class, which is why your author was especially pleased to spend the Memorial Day weekend with a longstanding headliner of the German luxury sedan genre: A 2021 BMW 5-Series.

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2023 Nissan Z First Drive - Old Dog, New Tricks

Meet the new Nissan Z. Same as the old Z.

Well, sort of.

Nissan has worked hard to hype the new Z – yet it’s an open secret that the new car shares some of its bones with the previous-generation car.

Which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

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2023 Cadillac Escalade-V: Blackwing All the Things

It appears that Tim “The Toolman” Taylor has a product-planning position at Cadillac.

That’s because, apparently, someone decided that just what the Escalade needed was “more power.”

A lot more power.

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2023 Kia Sportage First Drive - Looking for Attention

I’ll admit it – I sometimes forget Kia’s Sportage exists.

That’s not because the current-generation Sportage is a bad vehicle. No, it’s because it competes in a crowded class and certain stalwarts and newcomers have commanded the market’s attention in recent years.

Enter the 2023 Kia Sportage. Thanks to a major redesign, this five-seat crossover is ready to ram its way back into the spotlight, for better or for worse.

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2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe First Drive - What's Green Worth to You?

Everybody’s going electric these days, it seems. Or at least, electrified. The 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe is Jeep’s latest entry in the electrified-vehicle space (sorry for that bit of marketing speak, I must need more coffee), following, of course, the Wrangler 4xe.

Getting electrified might be good for the ‘ole CAFE standards – but is it worth the price premium? Will electrification change a vehicle’s character – and if so, for the better or for worse?

To find out, I headed deep to the heart of Texas last month.

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2022 New York Auto Show Recap - The City That Never Sleeps Takes a Nap

The 2022 New York Auto Show isn’t the first major auto show to be held since COVID-19 shut the world down in March 2020 – Chicago had shows in 2021 and 2022, and Los Angeles was in its usual slot last year. And there was Motorbella in Detroit last summer.

Still, for whatever reason – the loosening of COVID restrictions, the fact it was the first New York show since COVID, the presence of NY-based journos who don’t deign to travel west of the Hudson for those other shows – there was a pre-show feeling that this was it. This would be the show that marked the return of normalcy. Not LA in 2021 or Chicago just a couple of months ago – no, it would be this one.

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2022 New York Auto Show: Hyundai Palisade Gets Even More Classed-Up

Hyundai’s Palisade separates itself from Kia’s Telluride, at least in terms of appearance, by being the more “urban”, stylistically speaking, of the two.

The former looks boxy and rugged, while the latter has curves that evoke urban luxury — at least to this author’s eye.*

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2022 New York Auto Show: Kia Toughens the Telluride

The Kia Telluride looks more rugged and tough than it is. Well, Kia is changing that with updates for 2023.

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2022 New York Auto Show: Jeep Goes Long With the Wagoneer UPDATED

Let’s say you run a car company that just launched a large SUV last year. Let’s say you feel, for whatever reason, that it needs more length.

What do you do? Well, you extend it, of course.

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2022 New York Auto Show Week: Chrysler Goes With the (Air)Flow

Another day, another teaser. Thankfully, this will all be over by tomorrow’s happy hour.

This time, it’s Chrysler. Which is showing the Airflow Concept.

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2022 New York Auto Show Week: 2023 Kia Niro Takes the Stage

Many a debut has been made in New York over the years. Add the 2023 Kia Niro to the list.

It’s “all-new” in Kia-speak, though at this juncture we don’t know if it’s a redesign or a refresh. We’re guessing the former, based on the marketing speak.

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2022 New York Auto Show Week: Hyundai's Next Palisade Aims to Continue the Upscale Image

Like its platform-mate, the Kia Telluride, the Hyundai Palisade is going under the knife, with the results planned for show at the 2022 New York Auto Show on Wednesday.

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2022 New York Auto Show Week: Kia Updates the Telluride

It seems like just yesterday that Kia unveiled the Telluride three-row SUV. Now it’s apparently due for its first significant refresh.

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2023 Honda HR-V Grows in Size, Specs to Come

As if the 2023 Honda HR-V hasn’t been teased enough. The wraps are finally off, yet we still know little about the mechanicals.

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Here is the Toyota GR Corolla, Officially

We reported on the leak of the Toyota GR Corolla yesterday, and as expected, the specs we reported on matched up.

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Toyota GR Corolla Leaked Ahead of Official Debut

Launching a new vehicle under embargo must be a stressful endeavor for all those who are involved on the OEM side.

Take the Toyota GR Corolla. The brand has been so careful to build up interest via teases, and has plans to take the wraps off tonight — and it all got spoiled by some careless management of the company’s consumer Web site.

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Lotus Eletre SUV Unveiled, More Lotus EVs Planned

A Lotus EV? If British electronics are involved, isn’t a Lotus EV going to be useful only as a paperweight?

I kid, I kid. Lotus, however, is dead serious — the Lotus Eletre is here, and the company calls it “the world’s first electric Hyper-SUV”.

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Talking Gas Prices and More on the Second TTAC Podcast

Hi there! Remember that podcast we did a few weeks back? Well, we’re back with more.

There’s also more to come.

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Toyota GR Corolla Set to Debut Thursday, March 31

Mark your calendars for three days from now, folks.

Not only is it payday for a lot of us working schlubs, but Carscoops reports it’s also the day we’ll see the Toyota GR Corolla — and that the car is slated for our shores.

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Abandoned History: The Current Buick Logo, Just One of Many (Part II)

There has been much speculation over the past week regarding General Motors’ trademark application for a new Buick logo. Likely related to a swath of new EVs on the horizon (but not yet confirmed), the news fired up the old Abandoned History thought box. Why not take a look at all of Buick’s past logos? We began yesterday in 1903, and pick up today in 1942.

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Abandoned History: The Current Buick Logo, Just One of Many (Part I)

According to a recently filed trademark application, Buick’s familiar tri-shield logo may be going the way of the dodo. It’s been suggested the potential logo change is in pursuit of a revised image, in preparation for the Brave New World of EVs that Buick will soon unleash upon millions of eager customers. However, given the company has been around for over 120 years this is far from the first time Buick has swapped its badge.

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A Polite Request Regarding Apple CarPlay

I was sitting in line for a car wash this morning, readying a test vehicle for photos, and since the line was long and moving slow, I started perusing Twitter on my iPhone while listening to the radio.

The same phone that was plugged into the Ford Maverick’s USB port so that I could run Apple CarPlay.

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2023 Acura Integra: Return of the Entry-Luxury Sport Hatch

We’ve been hearing a lot about the 2023 Acura Integra all year, and now the wraps are off, officially.

The entry-level luxury/sport hatch will, as rumored, offer a manual transmission, though it won’t have all-wheel drive.

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Gone Truckin': Kia to Have Two EV Pickups By 2027, Report Says

Not to be outdone by corporate siblings Hyundai and Genesis, which have announced plans to launch 17 electric, or at least electrified, vehicles combined by 2030, Kia has claimed it will have 14 EVs (or, again, vehicles that at least have some electrification) by 2027.

Including two pickup trucks.

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Nissan Z Launch Timing Leaked, Sales Slated for June

A Nissan dealership employee shared what appears to be a presentation slide of the upcoming Z’s launch timing.

If true, it confirms that the car will go on sale in June.

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2021 Polaris Slingshot R Limited Edition Review - Three-Wheeled Weirdness

You’ve probably seen them, especially if you live in a big city. Three-wheeled vehicles that straddle the line between car and motorcycle that often travel in packs, driven mostly by men in their 30s and 40s.

Adult toys of the non-sexual variety.

Can-Am Spyders. Morgan 3 Wheelers. And Polaris Slingshots. I was loaned one of the latter last year.

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2022 Volkswagen Golf R Review: Two Steps Forward, One Step Back

Let me start this by saying that I considered the previous Golf R to be the all-around best enthusiast vehicle available in its price range during its time on sale. That’s particularly high praise coming from someone whose performance tastes generally gravitate toward V8-powered, rear-wheel-drive coupes, but I think Volkswagen had achieved something remarkable with the Mk7. It was a car that had the dynamic chops to hang with some very serious hardware out in the canyons but didn’t need to shout about it from an aesthetic standpoint, and it also sacrificed very little in terms of daily drivability and practicality to get there.

Beyond the fundamentals, the Mk7 Golf R had other important elements sorted out too – solid interior materials in a well laid out and comfortable cabin, a class-leading infotainment system with a nice-sounding stereo – that sort of thing. Automakers can get away with phoning in some of that stuff when it comes to their top-tier performance cars because enthusiasts tend to have different priorities than mainstream buyers do, but Volkswagen didn’t half-ass it. This is all to say that the Mk7 Golf R set the bar pretty high.

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2022 Toyota Tundra Hands-On Preview: Top 5 Reasons We Look Forward to This Truck

America’s love affair with the pickup truck is long from being over, and for good reason.

Modern full-size pickup trucks are more capable, efficient, comfortable, and technologically advanced than ever before. They really have become the jack-of-all-trades choice amongst the automotive world. So when an all-new pick-up debuts, it’s a big deal.

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Rumor Has It Rivian Will See More Production Delays

Rivian may be experiencing more production delays. Maybe this is why it now apparently has a delivery-time estimator on its build site?

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Rivian to Add Delivery Time Estimator to Configurator

Rivian is planning on adding a feature to its online configurator that estimates the time of delivery of the customer’s vehicle.

It’s mild news, to be sure, but it’s the week of Thanksgiving.

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Subaru Solterra In the Flesh

We’ve already covered the Subaru Solterra EV, so I don’t have much to add.

Instead, you can enjoy two poorly-lit pics from the 2021 Los Angeles Auto Show.

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Another Zoomy Crossover: Meet the Rugged Mazda CX-50

The Los Angeles Auto Show is this week — yes, it’s actually happening, as of this writing, and this author is boarding a flight for Cali tomorrow — and one of the vehicles that had been teased in advance of the show was the Mazda CX-50.

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2022 Volkswagen Jetta GLI - Still Jekyll and Hyde, and That's Good

The 2022 Volkswagen Jetta GLI may be changed, but its character remains the same.

Just like with the heavily updated Golf GTI, that’s cause for a sigh of relief.

Perhaps even more so, since the Jetta GLI doesn’t get the same high-falutin’ interior treatment. Thank God for keeping it old school.

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Mazda CX-50 Debuts Soon, Allegedly Off-Road Friendly

Mazda has announced that the 2023 CX-50 will debut on November 15th, foreshadowing its production launch in January of 2022 at the Alabama plant it shares with Toyota. That means odds are good that the model will share more than a few components with the Toyota Corolla Cross. But Mazda has been adamant that CX-50 is a unique vehicle riding on its very own platform.

Unique is a relative term, however, when the upcoming model represents another “lifestyle vehicle” designed to convince consumers that a jack-of-all-trades crossover is ready and willing to drag them up the side of a mountain. Officially, Mazda is claiming this one caters to adults with particularly active lifestyles and has surrounded it with nature-themed marketing materials. That presumably has something to do with the CX-50 boasting “enhanced all-wheel-drive capabilities.”

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Audi Resurrects Historical Horch Nameplate, Creates New Luxurious Rare Ride

Audi recently announced a new, super luxurious version of its largest sedan, and it’ll wear some branding not seen in a very long time. Wake up Horch, it’s 2022.

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Opinion: Why Dealers Have Earned Massive Markups

Earlier this week, someone sent me an addendum sticker from Mercedes-Benz of Selma, in Texas. The addendum added two line items to the sticker price. The first line item was VIN etching, at $199. That’s controversial enough, since some people have said that VIN etching is the scam of the decade – but those people haven’t seen the second item: A “Market Adjustment” charge for $125,000.

You read that right. One-hundred and twenty-five thousand U.S. American dollars – and that’s on top of the Mercedes-Benz G63 AMG’s already steep $178,000 asking price. But, frankly, it’s not the 70 percent markup that’s the most offensive thing here, It’s not even the $199 charge for the VIN etching.

Frankly, the worst part of this is that MB of Selma will very likely get their markup. And, when they do, they will deserve every single penny.

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2023 Kia Sportage Gets Distinctive New Duds, More

Kia’s current tagline is “movement that inspires” and while I am not sure if the 2023 Kia Sportage will be inspiring, exactly, it will catch your attention.

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2023 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Brings the Track to the Street

The 2023 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 is here.

And on paper, it appears to be bad-ass in ways worthy of the Z06 designation.

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2022 Ford Maverick First Drive - Return of the True Small Truck

There are currently two small trucks on sale – the Hyundai Santa Cruz and the 2022 Ford Maverick. Only one really looks the part.

That would be the latter. And thankfully for Ford and its buyers, the Maverick more than acts the part, too.

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Will Chip Shortage Dethrone GM's Sales Dominance?

Ninety years. That’s the amount of time that General Motors has led the sales charts in the U.S.

That may change this year, according to industry bible Automotive News, because of the ongoing microchip shortage.

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2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee: Blending New and Old

Earlier this year, we introduced you to the Jeep Grand Cherokee L. Jeep promised that the five-seat Grand Cherokee sharing the L’s new platform was soon to come.

And now it’s here. Imagine that. Funny how that works.

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Opinion: These Are the Most Influential EVs of the Moment

It’s become something of a mantra for me, lately, but that doesn’t make it any less true. It goes like this: Electric cars aren’t coming, they’re already here. And, depending on who you ask, they’ve been here – they just haven’t quite made it into the mainstream, yet. With the dawn of the Rivian R1T ( which became the first full-size electric pickup to reach series production earlier this month), though, a lot of people would have you believe that’s set to change. I happen to be one of them.

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Abandoned History: The Early 2000s WiLL Project, for The Youths (Part I)

Today’s Abandoned History story is one of targeted marketing. In the early 2000s, an amalgam of Japanese corporations combined efforts to reach out to younger consumers via unified branding. Cars, food, appliances – all across Japan new, youth-focused products all wore the same sub-brand: WiLL.

Collectively WiLL asked, “How do you do, fellow kids?”

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2022 Chevrolet Silverado Addresses Previous Critiques, Adds ZR2 Trim

The full-size truck race is competitive, and one can’t afford to fall too far behind.

After a few years of hearing criticisms concerning the Silverado, and how it’s not as stylish as the Ram 1500 or well-done as the Ford F-150, Chevrolet has unveiled an updated truck, with the intent of blunting those critiques and getting back in the game.

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2022 Volkswagen Tiguan First Drive - Changed, Yet the Same

Volkswagen is in the midst of remaking its SUV lineup.

Just in the past few years the company has added a five-seat version of the Atlas – the Atlas Cross Sport – as well as adding the Taos small SUV and the ID.4 EV. Now the venerable Tiguan, which was the veteran of the group, has gone under the knife.

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GM Halts Production at Nearly All U.S. Plants, Chip Shortage to Blame

The chip shortage has struck again.

General Motors is going to temporarily halt production at most of its North American assembly plants, starting Monday, because the shortage of semiconductor chips continues.

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Special Edition Lucid Dreams Involve Plenty of Power, Range

Lucid has two new versions of the limited-edition Dream Edition in queue — one that focuses on power and one that focuses on range.

Naturally, their names reflect this focus — they are the Dream Edition Performance and Dream Edition Range.

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Opinion: Over the Air Updates Bad, Owning the Car Good

Software updates. Precisely when we had to start having a conversation about software updates – over the air or otherwise – in an automotive context isn’t something I can answer. We didn’t have them for about 100 years. Then, we did. What’s more, it seems like everyone is more or less OK with that, but should they be? Are these software updates really making your car better, or are they slowly throttling back your car’s performance and functionality in a bid to frustrate you into buying a new one?

Let’s take a few minutes to explore the possibilities.

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Not Sitting Down: 2022 Volkswagen Jetta, Jetta GLI Get Refreshed

There’s new hotness in the compact-car segment, especially among the sportier models.

Since Volkswagen has two compact models — the mainstream Jetta and the spiced-up Jetta GLI — it probably can’t sit idly by in a year in which Subaru drops a new WRX, the Honda Civic is all-new (with sporty versions coming soon), and Hyundai has taken the wraps off the Elantra N sport sedan. An Acura Integra is also on the way, and it might be priced in the same range.

That makes it time for a refresh.

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2022 Hyundai Elantra N: The Full Hotness

Hyundai’s performance offensive continues with the 2022 Hyundai Elantra N.

Which, yes, is available with a manual transmission.

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Opinion: How Acura Can Avoid Messing Up the Integra

Last week, we reported on Acura’s plans to bring back the Integra. In the article, I hinted at how Acura can go about getting it right.

I’d like to expand on that.

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Opinion: The 2023 Nissan Z May Be Old, But That's Fine

Since last night’s unveiling of the 2023 Nissan Z, I’ve been chewing over my thoughts on the car. Is it good, or is it another misfire from a brand that’s struggling to recapture glory days?

After exerting far too much brainpower on the question — I’d rather ponder what’s for lunch — I’ve arrived at my answer.

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2023 Nissan Z is Both New and Not

BROOKLYN, NY — The 2023 Nissan Z is here. And it’s dropping the numeric nomenclature.

That’s right. Just call it Z.

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QOTD: Could the Nissan Z Be a Secret Infiniti Q60 Replacement?

Tonight’s the night. The wraps finally officially come off the next Nissan Z.

Your humble author is sitting at a Starbucks in Brooklyn, counting the hours until tonight’s unveiling. And thinking about the future of not just the Z, but Infiniti.

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  • DenverMike When was it ever a mystery? The Fairmont maybe, but only the 4-door "Futura" trim, that was distinctively upscale. The Citation and Volare didn't have competing trims, nor was there a base stripper Maxima at the time, if ever, crank windows, vinyl seats, 2-doors, etc. So it wasn't a "massacre", not even in spirit, just different market segments. It could be that the Maxima was intended to compete with those, but everything coming from Japan at the time had to take it up a notch, if not two.Thanks to the Japanese "voluntary" trade restriction, everything had extra options, if not hard loaded. The restriction limited how many vehicles were shipped, not what they retailed at. So Japanese automakers naturally raised the "price" (or stakes) without raising MSRP. What the dealers charged (gouged) was a different story.Realistically, the Maxima was going up against entry luxury sedans (except Cimarron lol), especially Euro/German, same as the Cressida. It definitely worked in Japanese automaker's favor, not to mention inspiring Lexus, Acura and Infiniti.
  • Ronnie Schreiber Hydrocarbon based fuels have become unreliable? More expensive at the moment but I haven't seen any lines gathering around gas stations lately, have you? I'm old enough to remember actual gasoline shortages in 1973 and 1979 (of course, since then there have been many recoverable oil deposits discovered around the world plus the introduction of fracking). Consumers Power is still supplying me with natural gas. I recently went camping and had no problem buying propane.Texas had grid problems last winter because they replaced fossil fueled power plants with wind and solar, which didn't work in the cold weather. That's the definition of unreliable.I'm an "all of the above" guy when it comes to energy: fossil fuels, hydro, wind (where it makes sense), nuclear (including funding for fusion research), and possibly solar.Environmental activists, it seems to me, have no interest in energy diversity. Based on what's happened in Sri Lanka and the push against agriculture in Europe and Canada, I think it's safe to say that some folks want most of us to live like medieval peasants to save the planet for their own private jets.
  • Car65688392 thankyou for the information
  • Car65688392 Thankyou for your valuable information
  • MaintenanceCosts There's no mystery anymore about how the Japanese took over the prestige spot in the US mass market (especially on the west coast) when you realize that this thing was up against the likes of the Fairmont, Citation, and Volaré. A massacre.