By on April 16, 2019

Image: Steph Willems/TTAC

“Ask the man who owns one,” Packard once implored readers from the glossy depths of various Depression-era magazines. While clearly not interested in courting the female buyer (I hope they’re dragged on Twitter for this insensitive tagline), Packard’s core message still holds up today.

No one loves poo-pooing other people’s buying decisions quite like auto journos, but each and every buyer has their own reasons for choosing the way they did. Shocking though it may be to some, buyers often walk (okay, drive) away quite pleased with their purchase — even with crossovers plucked from a homogenous pool of now limitless depth.

And, barring quality headaches down the road, their feelings might stay that way, too.

While I never held any deep dislike for Lexus’ compact NX, aside from the fact that its nose is undoubtedly the most prominent — and unprotected — in the industry, desire or even “interest” were never needles that budged off the baseline. What could change this perception? Driving one. (Read More…)

By on July 25, 2018

When you think about Porsche, you’re probably thinking of the 911. However, you really should be thinking about the Macan. It may have started out as a supplementary model for families interested in the Cayenne SUV but who found it beyond their means, but it’s quickly become the company’s best-selling vehicle. You now see them in every neighborhood where status is the deciding factor in automobile purchases.

Fortunately, the Macan also drives better than any compact crossover has a right to — further helping its popularity. But, with more competition within the premium utility segment than ever before, Porsche can’t leave the model to rest on its laurels. The manufacturer has updated the model for 2019 with loads of changes, but spotting them is a little like tackling the Double Check in a Highlights magazine under the influence of a rather severe childhood learning disability. (Read More…)

By on July 17, 2018

Image: Acura

Having first appeared back in 2000 as a 2001 model, the Acura MDX is the Ed Asner of premium midsize import crossovers and a crucial breadwinner in the brand’s utility-light portfolio. While the model’s smaller sibling, the RDX, just underwent massive changes, the MDX soldiers on into 2019 muttering, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Thus, most changes fall into the minor but meaningful category.

One thing the 2019 MDX does seek to fix is its mildly conservative persona, but only for buyers willing to take that leap. (Read More…)

By on April 8, 2018

With its new UX crossover in tow, Lexus now has a utility vehicle competing in every segment. However, it wants to make sure its getting the right customers behind the wheel. If the gargantuan GL is intended for large families with a fair amount of pocket change and an abundance of parking space, the UX is certainly aimed at childless urbanites who want something upscale but haven’t yet amassed the same level of wealth.

Lexus is aiming low for the subcompact luxury crossover’s base price, hoping to tap into the youth market. That’s important because the average owner for a Lexus-badged vehicle is around 60-years old. However, a cheap and youth-oriented vehicle for Lexus doesn’t mean the same thing as it does for Toyota and the MSRP is going to reflect that — despite UX’s downmarket push. (Read More…)

By on February 27, 2018

Image: Lexus Europe

The only thing missing is a cabriolet. With the unveiling of its new UX subcompact (“urban compact crossover” in Lexus parlance), Toyota’s premium division now spans the utility segment gamut, with models ranging from ultra-small unibodies to full-size, body-on-frame luxo-barges.

Lexus’ European arm pulled the wraps off the UX on Tuesday, ahead of the global model’s world premiere in Geneva next week. In the model’s sights are a trio of pint-sized Germans and a singular Japanese foe, all competing for a slice of a segment with unclear growth prospects. (Read More…)

By on February 20, 2018

Lexus UX

Lexus is teasing the new UX crossover prior to its big March 6th premiere at the Geneva Motor Show, and something immediately stands out: itty-bitty tail fins. To be fair, we don’t know how much molding is actually happening in the singular photo provided by the automaker. The fins do seemed toned down compared to the earlier UX Concept vehicle — but they also look further separated from the rest of the bodywork.

Compared to a 1959 Cadillac Eldorado, the Lexus’ fins could be best described as vestigial. However, they do appear to be legitimate — extending upward from the vehicle’s rear haunches in a distinctive manner.  (Read More…)

By on December 4, 2017

Lexus UX Concept, Lexus Europe

If American dealers get their way, Lexus’ planned subcompact crossover — first shown in concept form last year — won’t be the strictly Europe-focused proposition the brand’s parent company intended.

The UX concept, introduced at the 2016 Paris Auto Show, shares its architecture with the Toyota C-HR and is already scheduled for production. We’ll see the model debut in Geneva next March. Lexus Europe is positioning the model as a new entry point for the brand’s utility lineup, designed to appeal to urbanites used to navigating tight spaces.

But European city-dwellers aren’t the only ones who took notice of the UX concept. Dealers in the U.S. are clamoring for a chance to bulk up their growing lineup with something small. It’s something Lexus is now considering. (Read More…)

By on June 10, 2015

Tesla Model X Teaser

X may finally give it to consumers: The Tesla Model X is set to hit showrooms within three to four months, per CEO Elon Musk.

(Read More…)

By on March 17, 2015

BMW X5 xDrive40e PHEV 03

Having experimented with its i Series, BMW is bringing over its PHEV technology to its core collection, beginning with the X5 xDrive40e.

(Read More…)

By on February 10, 2015

Tesla Model X

The oft-delayed Tesla Model X is currently set for a Q3 2015 launch, two years after it was originally supposed to enter showrooms. How did this happen?

(Read More…)

By on January 27, 2015

2015 Porsche Macan S

Been waiting a while for a chance to drive home a Porsche Macan? The automaker plans to increase supply to meet demand in 2015.

(Read More…)

By on January 26, 2015

2015-Cadillac-Escalade-live-photos-11

Ballers looking for a much smaller Cadillac Escalade may need to wait four years before such a beast arrives, per president Johan de Nysschen.

(Read More…)

By on January 19, 2015

2013 Lexus RX 350 F-Sport-005

Skipping Chicago after Detroit as far as debuts are concerned, Lexus will unveil its 2016 RX 350 at the 2015 New York Auto Show in April.

(Read More…)

By on January 11, 2015

Jaguar-F-PACE-teaser

After three concept crossovers, Jaguar is ready to go all in for 2016 with the F-Pace.

(Read More…)

By on October 15, 2014

porsche-macan-2013-la-auto-show-13

Porsche Macan enthusiasts in the United States who want diesel power will be able to order such a thing over a year from now, as Porsche is now hard at work bringing a diesel Macan to life.

(Read More…)

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