By on September 9, 2020

Joe Biden. Pix_Arena/Shutterstock

Automakers are notoriously tight-lipped about future product, much to the endless frustration of scoop-hungry automotive journalists.

They respond “we don’t comment on future product” to our e-mailed queries so often that I suspect it’s an automated response. It’s a running joke when hacks and flacks are drinking together in the hospitality suite on a junket and one of us tries to get a buzzed P.R. professional to spill some tea. They go to great lengths to disguise prototypes from the prying eyes of both professional spy photogs and random jamokes with a cell-phone camera. Speaking of cell-phone cameras, journalists invited on to automaker property for certain events will have their phone’s camera lens covered with a sticker for the duration.

(Read More…)

By on September 9, 2020

bronco

We all know that scene in Jurassic Park where the island’s designated hunter gets outsmarted by the raptors and becomes their dinner. That dude’s death always bothered me because he was cool, and I hate it when cool characters buy the farm in disaster movies. Also, he seemed smart enough to not be outwitted by the voracious dinos, unlike others in the flick.

Ahem, where was I? Oh yes – Ford might be hiding some Raptors of its own, so to speak. Although instead of disappearing behind bushes, these Raptors are lurking in plain sight on public roads, with only canvas and tape concealing them from those who hunt this type of prey.

(Read More…)

By on September 8, 2020

VW teaser

Hey kids! What time is it? That’s right, it’s teaser time!

Add Volkswagen to the list of brands looking to fill every possible niche in the SUV/CUV lineup, from subcompact to Canyonero sized.

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By on July 13, 2020

2021 Ford Bronco Sport

The Ford Bronco news doesn’t just stop with one model. There’s not one, not two, but three in the family.

That threesome includes the two-door and four-door versions of the Bronco, as well as the smaller Bronco Sport.

Think of the Bronco Sport as an off-road version of Ford’s Escape crossover. Ford might get mad at us for saying that, but hey, we’re not PR.

(Read More…)

By on July 10, 2020

Our friends over at Motor1 have been busy today.

First it’s the rumor about the next-gen Honda Civic Type R getting a big power boost and all-wheel drive, and now they’re reporting that a version of the Toyota Supra might get a big power bump, bigger than what the car got in 2021.

Well, actually, it’s Japanese Web site BestCarWeb.jp, the same site that surfaced the Civic rumors, doing the reporting – Motor1 is just aggregating the info, same as I am right now, after translating it.

(Read More…)

By on July 10, 2020

honda

The Honda Civic Type R isn’t exactly subtle.

Its boy-racer styling and big wing announce its presence and mission with authority. It’s as if Honda is saying, “Hey, you want subtlety in a hi-po Civic? Get a Si.” Note: The Si is easily identifiable because of a spoiler of its own, albeit one that’s far less ostentatious.

If the current Type R doesn’t exactly blend, what does one make of the rumors swirling across the Internets this morning?

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By on July 1, 2020

European 2021 Volkswagen Tiguan

Volkswagen just revealed the new Tiguan. For next year.

Why did the brand take the virtual wraps off the refreshed version of the Tiguan a year and a half before it goes on sale here, as a 2022 model? Because Europe gets it first. It goes on sale there “shortly.”

Might as well just gather media via Skype and tell us all about it now, apparently.

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By on June 23, 2020

2021 Volkswagen Arteon

You’re forgiven for forgetting the Volkswagen Arteon exists.

That’s not necessarily the car’s fault. It’s a fairly good large sports sedan, but it plays in a class that has been overshadowed by the crossover craze, and top-level Arteons are priced so that similar Audis start to look appealing.

As I wrote when the car launched, the biggest challenge the Arteon faces is finding the right buyer.

It’s very unlikely this is the first car that comes to mind when someone thinks of Volkswagen.

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By on June 2, 2020

acura

Slides from an Acura dealer webinar have leaked onto the Internet, and Acura fans, take note.

While almost anything on Reddit needs to be approached with a reasonably skeptical eye – do you really think all those posts on r/relationships are real? – there are a few news nuggets to mine here.

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By on January 3, 2020

BMW will debut a new version of its very green i3 EV at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) next week. The compact hatchback has been reimagined for the future — and BMW’s future is one of less usability and much greater expense. You’ll need hired help.

(Read More…)

By on September 25, 2019

Image: Corey Lewis/TTACA new trim level here, a revised bumper there, general fiddling. Sometimes, there’s just no way around it — a manufacturer’s vehicular offering is overdue for replacement. Today we want to discuss the models on sale in The Current Year that have lived past their reasonable shelf life.

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By on April 5, 2019

Image: Karma Automotive

With the recent loss of the Chevrolet Volt, the term “range-extended electric vehicle” risks going the way of the passenger pigeon, closing the door on the era in which automakers tried to lure nervous buyers into an *almost* electric car that contained a gasoline engine only for sporadic electricity generation. The Volt had this system, the BMW i3 REx still does (but not in Europe), and the glitzy Fisker Karma popularized the term among the Hollywood elite.

The Karma met a swift end, yet lives on under a slightly altered name, all thanks to Chinese dollars. A new version of the exact same car — the Revero, sold by Karma Automotive — appeared in 2016. The California-based, Wanxiang Group-owned Karma is a low-production automaker, flinging out a few hundred examples of the Revero each year for the tidy sum of $130,000. The current car kept its GM-sourced 2.0-liter four-cylinder generator, which feeds two powerful rear-mounted electric motors. Combined power is 403 horsepower and a stump-pulling 981 lb-ft of torque.

As it prepares to debut a revamped Revero at Auto Shanghai 2019, Karma has detailed some changes to its ultra-lux green car. For starters, GM got the boot in favor of BMW. (Read More…)

By on March 8, 2019

Despite the growing importance of crossover vehicles, Acura is one of the few automakers that has not abandoned its commitment to sedans. It intends to prove that by bringing a production-ready vehicle, based heavily on the 2016 Precision Concept (seen above), to Pebble Beach this summer.

The car will also signal Acura’s entry into a new era of styling, underpinned by muscular shapes offset with inorganic angles — sort of like a sexy robot. If you want sense of what that looks like, and are made uncomfortable by the notion of having to Google the words “sexy robot,” contrast the 2018 RDX with the 2019 model to get a taste of Acura’s updated design language(Read More…)

By on December 10, 2018

Has the crossover craze taken another victim? Or is it just simply a case of a rare body style not drawing sales?

It’s not like wagons (with some exceptions — ahem, Subaru) were selling like gangbusters before the current crossover trend took off.

Still, the BMW 3 Series wagon has garnered attention from enthusiasts in search of utility. But, alas, it appears that the next-generation 3 Series won’t be sold with a wagon variant, at least not in these United States.

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By on March 29, 2018

2018 Acura RLXOur last few entries in the Buy/Drive/Burn series have been stuck in the 1990s, and we’ve had a request recently to talk about something a bit newer, perhaps even… current. While you recover from your immediate shock, I can assure you we aren’t going completely mainstream. No talking about boring everyday things. No, these three will likely all qualify as Rare Rides subjects in the future, assuming I’m 70 years old and there’s still an Internet media (hopefully there isn’t).

Three untouchable large sedans, all of them trading on their luxury intentions. Remember, you only get to burn one, and one has to go home to your garage.

(Read More…)

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