Category “Blog”

Crossover Knight: 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack SEL review

The 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack is a surprisingly capable new take on the Golf Sportwagen.

Much like its competitor the Subaru Outback and Crosstrek, the Alltrack too has higher ground clearance, standard all-wheel drive, and a rugged styling made for off-road adventure.

2017 Volkswagen Golf-Alltrack SEL 5 Door Wagon Angular Front stock photos of front three quarter view

2017 Volkswagen Golf-Alltrack SEL 5 Door Wagon Angular Front stock photos of front three quarter view

The 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack features the same MQB platform that the Golf, GTI, and Golf R are based on. The Alltrack also shares the same 1.8-liter turbocharged 4 cylinder as the Golf that produces 170 hp and 199 lb-ft of torque. The 4MOTION all-wheel drive is shared with the Golf R.

Three Trims

The 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack comes in three trims – the S, SE, and SEL. It is 0.6 inches higher than the Sportwagen and gets an additional drive mode.

In the Off-road mode, a specialized engine and ABS configuration helps you negotiate tough terrain and optimizes driving and traction control to comfortably drive down steep grades. Hill descent control actively helps with the brakes going downhill, keeping the vehicle at a constant, controlled speed.

Car pictures of rear three quarter view of 2017 Volkswagen Golf-Alltrack SEL 5 Door Wagon Angular Rear

Car pictures of rear three quarter view of 2017 Volkswagen Golf-Alltrack SEL 5 Door Wagon Angular Rear

4MOTION all-wheel drive

The AllTrack’s 4MOTION all-wheel drive works by transferring torque between front and rear wheels. It can transmit up to 50% of power to the rear wheels. It may not be as refined as Audi’s new Quattro all-wheel drive with ultra technology, but then the 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack’s price tag is only a little more than half of the A4 allroad.

Stock photo of straight dashboard view of 2017 Volkswagen Golf-Alltrack SEL 5 Door Wagon Dashboard

Stock photo of straight dashboard view of 2017 Volkswagen Golf-Alltrack SEL 5 Door Wagon Dashboard

Subtle Changes

2017 has brought some very subtle changes to the Golf Alltrack, making it a more beefy version of its Sportwagen sibling. The All Track features redesigned bumpers and underbody guards that give a more rugged look and feel to the wagon. New gray plastic lines the lower side skirts, a newly redesigned front fascia. Also the 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack features a sharp matte aluminum and black honeycomb grille, with standard LED daytime running lights. Silver roof rails, side mirrors, wheel arch cladding and 18-in aluminum wheels come on the SEL trim.

Lastly a 14.5-gallon gas tank replaces the Sportwagen’s 13.2 gallon tank, to compensate for the Alltrack’s lower fuel efficiency.

For more 2017 Volkswagen Golf Alltrack pictures, click here.

 

The Quintessential Family Sedan: 2017 Honda Civic LX Sedan Review

Combining great looks and a reputation for dependability with excellent performance, comfort, and fuel economy, the 2017 Honda Civic is a very popular economy car.

Add to it a five-star overall safety rating from NHTSA and excellent interior room, and you have the quintessential family sedan.

honda_17civiclxsa10a_angularfrontNow in its 10th generation, the Honda Civic has been around for nearly half a century. Starting off as a two door coupe and hatchback in 1972, the Honda Civic has always given consumers the flexibility with fuel over many other competitors.

New Power Trains for 2017

Currently the 10th generation Civic is being offered in new power trains and can be fitted with either a 2.0-liter four with 158-hp, or a 174-hp 1.5-liter turbo four paired with a six speed manual or CVT transmission. This is a huge improvement over the previous generation in nearly every way.

honda_17civiclxsa10a_angularrearBack with technology, style, and form

Over the past few years Honda hasn’t been putting as much effort into their compacts, which led to their competitors growing with a more appealing eye.

Now back with technology, style, and form, the 2017 Honda Civic showcases a very sleek, clean-sheet design, stiff body chassis, efficient engines, and a large list of safety features and technology. Standard safety features include antilock brakes, side airbags, side curtain airbags and stability control.

Honda Sensing driver-assistive technologies

Available Honda Sensing suite of driver-assistive technologies include Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS), Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) with Low-Speed Follow, and Honda LaneWatch live video.

The 2017 Honda Civic is leading with a variety of multi style bodies and performance platforms. The Civic sedan is probably the best-looking Honda in its class for a decade.

The 2017 Civic LX sedan features a beautifully edgy fastback shape, thus making its appearance in proportions wider and lower. The front end lacks oomph, with a very basic thick chrome band, but elsewhere the car is quite the looker, with its flared wheels, fastback style roofline, wedgy tail, and bracket shaped taillights giving it an elegant Acura style.

honda_17civiclxsa10a_dashboardRoomy Interiors

An available eight-way power driver seat makes the Civic even more comfortable to drive. Interiors are roomy and comfortable, with enough leg and headroom for even 6-footers.

Kelly Blue Book (KBB) best buy of the year

The 2017 Honda Civic is the Kelly Blue Book (KBB) best buy of the year. Key competitors include the Toyota Corolla, Ford Focus, and Volkswagen Golf GTI.

For more 2017 Honda Civic pictures, Click Here.

Do-It-All Truck: 2017 RAM 1500 Rebel Review

The RAM owns the highest owner-loyalty among half-ton pickups, and true to its lineage, the RAM 1500 Rebel comes with rugged reliability, comfortable interiors, and strong off-road capabilities.

ram_17rebel1500pu4a_angularfrontFormerly known as Dodge RAM, RAM is a full sized half-ton pickup truck, competing with the likes of the Ford F-150 and Chevrolet Silverado 1500. The Rebel was first released in 2015 as a brand new model trim for RAM 1500.

Interestingly, the RAM is named after the hood ornament that first appeared on Dodge vehicles in 1993.

RAM trucks have made Motor Trend truck of the year 5 times. The 2017 RAM Rebel is an off road-oriented version of the 1500.

RAM 1500 Rebel: Comfortable in the Long Haul

The RAM 1500 Rebel isn’t just your average add-on decal package. It’s designed to utilize both on-road and off-road elements, and is quite comfortable in the long haul.

The list of standard equipment now includes Uconnect infotainment with an 8.4-inch screen, automatic climate control, anti-spin differential, remote start, and rear park assist.

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In addition to an available 5.7L HEMI V8 Engine with Fuel Saver Technology, and standard Active-Level Four-Corner Air Suspension, the Rebel comes with 17-Inch Aluminum Wheels with Matte Black Pockets, shod with all terrain tires. An off-Road Ground Clearance of 9.3 Inches at the front axle helps off-roading. While only available in crew cab and a 5-foot-7 bedding, the Rebel is sure to get all the jobs done while making for a great off-roader.

Comfortable Interiors, More Storage

The 2017 RAM 1500 Rebel features a blacked out grille with a large RAM badge. The Rebel’s interior is comfortable and functional, and even offers removable soft fabric floor mats, plus more storage and cubbies than the competition.

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Exterior features, on the Rebel are very similar to the Sport R/T trim. Also added are black fender flare trim, Bilstein shock absorbers, LED fogs, and keyless entry.

For More 2017 RAM 1500 Rebel Pictures, Click Here.

An Iconic Nameplate: The 2017 Lincoln Continental review

An iconic nameplate, once the favorite ride of U.S. presidents, is back.

The Lincoln continental has had a long historical lineage dating back to the late 1930’s and early 40’s.Currently in its tenth generation of production, the 2017 Continental was first unveiled in 2015 at the New York Auto Show.

Since its last production in 2002, the Continental took a thirteen-year hiatus. 2017 looks to be a big year for the newly redesigned Continental.

lincoln_17continentalsa10a_angularfront

Trims and Powertrain Options

The 2017 Lincoln Continental is available in 4 trims: Premier, Select, Reserve, and Black Label. Based on a front wheel drive platform, it offers an optional all wheel drive as well.

Discerning users can choose from a wide variety of powertrains. The US base engine is a 3.7 liter V6 producing 305 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque. Next step up, as an available option is the 2.7-liter direct injection twin turbo V6 with 335 hp and 380 lb-ft of torque. Lastly is the option of the new 3.0-liter direct injection twin-turbocharged V6, this power train is also shared with the revised 2017 Lincoln MKZ, and it is rated at 400 hp and 400 lb-ft of torque.

Lincoln has now included electronically latched doors that pull completely shut if not closed all the way. Torque vectoring has been added to the all wheel drive system. New technology offers adaptive cruise control, lane stay assist, and an optional 360-degree camera system. Three available drive modes adjust steering and suspension settings to normal, comfort, or sport modes.

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Luxury on Wheels Personified

Visually the 2017 Lincoln Continental has all the looks that say luxury. Staying largely true to its concept design. The 2017 Continental is very luxurious inside and out, and has almost a Bentley’esque style and vibe. 2017 has brought some very nice touches to the new Continental.

A 10-way heated power front seats with lumbar support come standard, and 30-way adjustable seats are optional, for an extra $1,500. The luxurious soft touch back seats also offer plenty of leg, head, and shoulder room.

The 2017 Continental features an overall beautiful and timeless design. The mesh like grille pattern, new LED lights in the lower fascia, headlights, taillights and interior lights all flow in a welcoming manner. The door handles integrated with the beltline and curve outward making for a new unique style. Body lines are sharp and modern.

lincoln_17continentalsa10a_dashboardSafety and Security

Safety and security features are second to none. Even the base model comes with Four-wheel disc ABS, Driver and front-passenger airbags, Front seat side airbags, driver knee airbag, glove-box-door-integrated knee airbag, side-curtain airbags, child-safety rear door locks, emergency trunk release, lower anchors and tether anchors for children, SOS post-crash alert system, personal safety system, individual tire pressure monitoring system, panic brake assist, electronic parking brake, anti-theft perimeter alarm, and an enhanced security package.

For more 2017 Lincoln Continental pictures, Click Here.

Smaller, Lighter, and More Fuel Efficient:
The 2017 GMC Acadia SLT Review

Now smaller, lighter, and more fuel efficient, GMC has finally redesigned the Acadia into a more contemporary crossover SUV.

The all-new 2017 Acadia is a lot shorter in length than the previous generations, and there is no longer a third row of seating.

gmc_17acadiaslt1od2a_angularfront

The 2017 GMC Acadia SLT: Lighter Weight, Greater Agility

It’s not a bad thing that it loses some length, because the 2017 GMC Acadia SLT is now a lot more maneuverable, and those tight parking spaces are not as challenging as they used to be. Weight has also been cut to improve fuel economy.gmc_17acadiaslt1od2a_angularrear

Contemporary Crossover Design

The 2017 GMC Acadia’s new exterior trades a lot of truck-based cues for a more contemporary crossover styling. The exterior receives softer contour lines, a sleeker windshield angle, and more toned front and rear lighting elements.

Visually the 2017 GMC Acadia has taken a huge step forward, and is not as boxy as other GM models and trucks. The grille is very prominent and bold; the side body moldings are more defined and sculpted, and the rear side window glass is curved all the way around to the back window.

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2017 GMC Acadia SLT: Features Galore

The 2017 GMC Acadia SLT trim features auto-dimming driver and rearview mirrors, upgraded driver display, power outlet, universal garage door opener, leather upholstery seating, power front seats with lumbar adjustments, as well as an eight-speaker Bose audio system with a sub.

Safety and Driver Alerts

Stability and traction control, anti-lock brakes, front side airbags, full-length side curtain airbags, and a rear seat alert system are part of standard equipment in the safety department. The Acadia offers a Driver Alert Package that uses blind spot monitoring, lane departure warning, and rear cross-traffic alerts, as well as rear parking sensors.

For more 2017 GMC Acadia SLT pictures, Click Here.

 

Infiniti’s new crossover: the 2017 Infiniti QX30 Sport review

A sleek and powerful premium crossover built on the Mercedes-Benz GLA Class Platform. Expect a stiffer chassis and plenty of torque in a package that will delight most crossover buyers.

infiniti_17qx30sod1a_angularfrontThe 2017 Infiniti QX 30 Sport includes a redesigned front and rear bumper, grained side sills, as well as chrome bodywork accents, and an increase in ride height and ground clearance.

Infiniti’s new “premium active crossover” has a luxurious and sporty feel about it, which makes it very distinctive from the other crossovers in its class. In fact, the QX30 looks as if Infiniti has crossed both Japanese and European styling to create a beautiful looking crossover that performs well when the roads turns curvy.

 

infiniti_17qx30sod1a_angularrearSporty front–end styling, contoured bodylines

The 2017 Infiniti QX 30 Sport is quite unique and different from the other QX30 trims. Expect a very aggressive and sporty front-end styling, strong contoured bodylines, as well as beautifully swept roof and hood lines.

The Sport trim is only available in front wheel drive, while most of Infiniti and the Mercedes platforms use rear wheel drive. A sport tuned suspension, 19 inch 5 Point starred rims that look really good on the car, lower fascias for the front and rear, blacked out grille, and a Bose sound system come standard.

You can’t deny the 2017 Infiniti QX30 Sport is one well- designed and good-looking crossover.

infiniti_17qx30sod1a_dashboardMerc Platform and Powertrain, Infiniti Infotainment System

The 2017 Infiniti QX 30 Sport is heavily based on Mercedes-Benz components. Borrowing from the Mercedes’ GLA class, the QX30 uses the same platform, and power train as its European counterpart.

Sharing the same chassis and 2.0 liter turbocharged engine, dual clutch transmission, key fob, and door mounted seat controls, a lot of the Infiniti QX30 has Merc stamped all over it, including much of the interior. However Infiniti still uses its own infotainment system.

For more 2017 Infiniti QX 30 Sport pictures, Click Here.

2016 Ford Expedition

Straight rear view of 2016 Ford Expedition Limited 5 Door SUV Stock Photo

The Ford Expedition is a full-size SUV meant to carry big families and haul their belongings in a way today’s crossover vehicles and trucks simply can’t do to this degree. With a complete redesign in 2015 to make it look more like the Ford F-150 little has changed to this years. It still cares the stronger and harder appearance that came from the F-150 making it more stylish that also goes with better performances from a new engine. Up front of the Expedition has been worked to give a modern and aggressive look, helped by a redesigned of the front bumper, headlights and chrome grille. Wheels have also changed, and come up to 22 inches. The 2015 Expedition introduced three rows of windows and automatic five doors.

Rear three quarter view of 2016 Ford Expedition Limited 5 Door SUV

The interior feels and looks like the F-150. Carrying over from 2015 it’s equipped with latest technology features. With a great new sound system consisting of ten speaker, Sony audio system and upgraded MyFord Touch infotainment system. The look and feel is all very strait forward and truck like. I do think the more complex dash interments area is a bit of a clash to the overall look of the cabin

Straight dashboard view of 2016 Ford Expedition Limited 5 Door SUV Stock Photo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I wouldn’t say it is one of the more luxury interiors, but nice and a good mix of the higher-end looking plastics and other durable materials. For a family hauler I think it is a nice setup and look.

2016 Chevrolet Silverado

Rear three quarter view of 2016 Chevrolet Silverado 2500Hd High Country 4 Door

For the last few years Chevy has only been tweaking it’s Silverado appearance after its major redesign in 2013. This year the only really noticeable exterior change is the more refined cleaner looking front-end design. Thinner lines accompany the dual lamps and that there’s less chrome on and around the grille. The touchup gives the Chevy a more elegant look that is not shared with most of its competitors, but in the truck market that could be a bad thing. I personally like the “upgrade, ” it goes well with bulked up hood and simple body and rear lines. It is a very strait forward design, not over done like most of the Silverado competitors and that makes this my favorite looking truck.

Driver side profile view of a 2016 Chevrolet Silverado 2500Hd High Country 4 Door

Like most Chevy’s though I think the interior is off-putting and doesn’t fit the strong and tough exterior, this Silverado is no different. The first look at this interior it made me think of what a cartoon character would want as their interior. It looks right out of the Mario Brothers with the soft round angels, an awkward shape control panel taking up the whole center dash. The switches that look like they are for launching missiles are kind of cool, but reverts back to the cartoon feel. I will say I do smile every time I sit back and take it all in.

Straight Dashboard view of 2016 Chevrolet Silverado 2500Hd High Country

All and all I do like this truck, exterior looks great and the interior isn’t all that good looking, but it is functional and that’s what you need and depend on in a truck.

2016 Toyota Mirai

Low Aggressive Front Three Quarter View of 2016 Toyota Mirai Mirai 4 Door Sedan

Ugly yes – very ugly. There is not one angle where this car looks good or even Ok, but it looks like no other car and from every angle you know it’s a Mirai. “Mirai” in Japanese means future and that is what Toyota has introduced to us. I’m giving this car a complete pass for being the worst looking car I have ever seen because it is ground breaking!

This new “Fuel-Cell” creates propulsion from an electrochemical reaction between hydrogen and air. Hydrogen atoms are compressed and stored in high-pressure tanks. They are then sent through a platinum-coated membrane that separates their electrons and protons. Those electrons produce an electrical current to power the car, giving off only water vapor as its exhaust. It is not the fast car, but really not bad for a water-powered car, 0 to 60 in about nine seconds.

Front seat view of 2016 Toyota Mirai Mirai 4 Door Sedan Stock Photo

The interior matches the exterior, flat out ugly. I do wish the interior was a little bit better put together and laid out for this car of the future. Toyota seems to have taken a low base model interior and just forced in a futuristic center dash to keep the theme alive. This smooth center dash is kind of cool looking on its own, but doesn’t work paired with cheap plastics, poor quality materials and an outdates steering wheel. Nor is it very functional, buttons have to be firmly pressed to work and the shifter has a lot of loose play when in gear or when your moving it.

Straight rear view of 2016 Toyota Mirai Mirai 4 Door Sedan Stock Photo

So again this car gets a pass because it is the future of travel and first of it kind, but I just wish Toyota would have just put a little more thought into other parts of the car besides the amazing new “Fuel-Cell.”

2016 Hyundai Tucson SE

Straight front view of 2016 Hyundai Tucson SE 5 Door SUV Stock Photo

At first glance this new Tucson falls behind its competitors with somewhat common exterior looks. Its not till you look a little closer the Tucson starts moving a bit up the ranking list. Starting around $ 23,000 it is well priced for a small SUV and it gets 26 MPG, not bad. Now I can’t be too hard on its exterior design (or the lack there of) because this little SUV is designed for the mass appeal. It looks like they took the well-liked design aspects from Audi, Mazda and Subaru and put them all together to make this small SUV. At some precise angels it looks good, but the overall look is very uninspired.

Angular rear three quarter view of 2016 Hyundai Tucson SE 5 Door SUV

The interior is a better and is where the Tucson makes a small comeback. The base SE doesn’t have much more than the basics, but it is very well laid out in a very roomy and comfortable cabin. Mostly hard plastics are used for the dash trim and accents. This doesn’t bother me, for the main reason that it is a heavy duty plastic in an affordable priced car. It doesn’t look entirely good, but it’s not going to scratch or dent no matter what the every day driver does to it.

Straight Dashboard view of 2016 Hyundai Tucson SE 5 Door SUV

 

The 2016 Hyundai Tucson SE would not be my first choose for a compact SUV. It is very uninspired and I feel there are better options to pick from like the Mazda CX-5 or Honda CR-V. It is however a middle of the road fit and with a lower MSRP and MPG it out shines GMC’s Terrain and the Chevrolet Equinox.