On the Road With a Subaru XV Crosstrek

2015 Subaru Crosstrek

Just as it enters its fourth year, the Subaru Crosstrek drops its “XV” designation. As for the model at hand, a 2015 edition was the subject of a weekly test drive. Take a look at Subaru’s entry-level SUV line up and this niche automaker is well represented. The Subaru Forester … Read more

On the Road With an Infiniti Q50S

Ah, naming convention changes. Lincoln has done it. Cadillac is doing it…again. And Infiniti has also accomplished a change in its own model nomenclature. Car manufacturers, especially luxury brands, have been realigning model names to reflect a more Eurocentric alphanumeric pattern. The change is meant to advance product uniformity, but … Read more

Chrysler 200S: Premium, Mainstream Sedan

The Chrysler 200S supplies premium features to the product line. Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne did in 2014 to the Chrysler marque something that should have been accomplished decades earlier: he officially reassigned Chrysler to mainstream brand status, moving it away from its previous premium standing as a one-time direct … Read more

Cadillac CTS Vsport: Twin Turbo Performance

Automotive analysts drive me nuts! Well, not all — after all, I am an analyst myself. What infuriates me is when any purported expert or analyst takes data and uses that to argue a point, a baseless one in particular. For example, some people are pointing to Cadillac’s current sales … Read more

Sporty Crossover: 2015 Nissan Murano

There are no lack of SUVs on the market and Nissan itself is well represented. From its diminutive Juke to its burly Armada, there is something for everyone — six lines of utility vehicles to choose from. A Nissan Murano was a recent weekly driver, a five-passenger midsize crossover SUV. … Read more

Buick Regal GS AWD: Accessible Opulence

The Buick brand is enjoying a not-so-quiet renaissance, one where its entire fleet has been overhauled in the space of four years. This transformation has updated the marque with products better suited to attract younger buyers, consumers who are more likely to stay with the brand than the 70-something owners … Read more

Premium Value: Chrysler 300 Limited

You can get big V-8 power in the Chrysler 300, but a standard V-6 may meet your expectations for this full-bodied, traditional rear-wheel drive sedan. The current generation is based on its own architecture, forever severing its earlier Mercedes connection. Hundreds of cars have come and gone in my press … Read more

Upmarket Sedan: 2015 Hyundai Azera

In the Hyundai pecking order, the Azera sits between the midsize Sonata and the luxury Genesis sedan. That placement means that this large sedan has intense competition coming from below and above as well as from its competitors. The Hyundai Azera continues to fall far short of sales projections, missing … Read more

Make it Five: Volvo V60 T5 AWD Cross Country

Wagons have not sold well in the United States, but that isn’t stopping Swedish automaker Volvo from introducing a variant to its V60 sport wagon. This lifted wagon comes with skid plates to provide better off-road duty when needed. Take a Volvo V60 wagon and put it on steroids and … Read more

Natty Sport Coupe: Lexus RC 350

Lexus brings to the world an affordable sport coupe that isn’t a convertible. The RC is derived from three Lexus models, but has a unique undercarriage. The question not asked is this one — will we see more performance models from Toyota’s premier brand? I am a habitual visitor to … Read more

New Car Affordability: Nissan Versa Note

The 2015 Nissan Versa Note, a five-door subcompact hatchback. Someone at Nissan has a sense of humor. Or perhaps they are a glutton for punishment. Not two weeks went by when a mind-blowing Nissan GT-R was followed by a proletarian Nissan Versa Note, representing the apex and nadir of this … Read more

Godzilla Untamed: 2015 Nissan GT-R

Every once in a while I hit the Mother Lode with my weekly drivers. That bonanza comes chiefly in the form of a sports car, a prized model that turns heads and snaps necks. A BMW M6, Porsche Cayman, Porsche 911 4S, Corvette Stingray and a Jaguar F-TYPE have each … Read more

Honda Fit EV Lease Reduced to $199 Month

The EV market is overloaded with models as demand is, at best, tepid. Shoppers looking for a deal may not have to look far as manufacturer incentives roll out. Automotive manufacturers sometimes must resort to taking extraordinary measures to move slow selling models. Price cuts, larger rebates and zero percent … Read more

On the Road With the Family Toyota Camry

America’s best selling car model holds tight to its lead. A V-6 option adds performance, although it lacks the handling characteristics of a sports sedan. The 2015 Toyota Camry has an appealing visage and offers a model for a variety of shoppers, including an available hybrid edition. 2015 Toyota XSE … Read more

Out and About With the Toyota Highlander

Toyota is well represented in the midsize sport utility vehicle segment. Its seven-passenger Highlander is a crossover model, based on a car platform and offering the body rigidity and handling these types of vehicles are best known for. Four trim levels are available; standard front-wheel drive can be upgraded to … Read more

Subaru Outback: Where Value and Safety Intersect

The Subaru Outback is not emotive, but it offers an impregnable alternative to the small SUVs on the market. Select the base flathead engine with the premium trim line and this model stays just under the $30,000 price threshold. Subaru’s successes in recent years are well noted, what has transformed … Read more

New Ford Edge Scores and Soars

The second generation of the Ford Edge sporty crossover utility vehicle makes a midyear debut, delivering a superior overall package than the earlier model. Ford introduces two new engines, makes all-wheel drive available across all four trim levels, and holds pricing in place while offering a bevy of new technologies. … Read more

Exquisitely Emotive: 2015 Jaguar F-TYPE

Scottish designer Ian Callum is the name behind the Jaguar F-TYPE, the first true sports car from this iconic British manufacturer in more than 40 years. Supercharged engines and an 8-speed ZF-supplied automatic transmission move this marvelous, stout cat. If you haven’t looked at Jaguar in some time, then you … Read more

Efficient Turbo: 2015 Hyundai Sonata Eco

Hyundai continues to expand its Sonata line. For 2015, six editions are available, including an all-new Eco model. The Sonata Eco fuses power with efficiency, delivering the best amalgamation of the two across the model line. Some manufacturers aren’t satisfied with us media folk driving just one edition of a … Read more

Contractor Special: 2015 Ram ProMaster City

Over the past few years, the van market has been getting a much-needed makeover. You have seen the Mercedes-Benz (formerly Dodge) Sprinter and may have noticed the Nissan NV and the Ford Transit. Big models each, but by no means the only changes when it comes to all things vans. … Read more

Turbo Crossover: 2015 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.0T Ultimate

Hyundai’s approach to the automotive market is an unusual one, as this Korean automaker serves a passel of mainstream and upscale models within the same showroom, what follows a debatable decision the company made not too long ago. Specifically, that arrangement does not dissever Hyundai’s premium offerings from its conventional … Read more

Achievable Indulgence: 2015 Lexus ES 350

Your pathway to luxury in a Lexus ES 350. Like other premium brands, Lexus has been working diligently to attract and capture new customers. Unlike its competitors, it now has four lines of vehicles to get the job done. Specifically, you can choose a CT200h hybrid hatchback, an NX crossover, … Read more

Sport Sedan: 2015 Dodge Charger SE

Dodge’s brawny sedan also has a more subdued side. I am an enthusiast of traditional rear-wheel drive sedans. Large ones too: my first two cars were a Chrysler Newport Convertible and a Dodge Polara, although I admit having left that palatial reservation for about 10 years to drive econocars. Never … Read more

Quiet Diesel: 2015 Audi A3 Sedan TDI

A diesel for Audi’s smallest range. A quiet diesel powers this A3 sedan. With gas prices falling below $2 per gallon in most states it can be difficult to argue for the benefit of purchasing any fuel-efficient car, including diesels. Besides, diesel prices remain about 75 cents higher than gasoline … Read more

Sportwagon: 2015 Volvo V60 T6 R-Design

A new Volvo V60 from Sweden with love. Following a dearth of models from Volvo, three models appeared as weekly drivers in my driveway in about eight weeks time. The Swedish automaker has been working diligently to ensure that it is not an afterthought with media folk and car-buying consumers … Read more

Reinvigorated: 2015 Toyota Camry Hybrid

Rapidly falling gas prices will squeeze Camry Hybrid sales. Through 2014, the Toyota Camry has been the best-selling car model in America, outpacing the likes of the Honda Accord, Nissan Altima and its own compact sibling, the Toyota Corolla. Sales of the standard-bearer Camry routinely top 400,000 units per year, … Read more

Attainable Affluence:
2015 Cadillac ATS Coupe 2.0T

Small Cadillac coupe is substantial on driving enjoyment. Beginning with the 2013 model year, Cadillac reentered the compact market with its ATS sedan. In the 1980s it sold the Cimarron, a model that best remains forgotten. Where the earlier small car reflected poorly on Cadillac, the new model demonstrates that … Read more

Executive Sedan: 2015 Volvo S60 T6 Drive-E

Volvo is still alive and kicking, one of the smaller premium brands left in the world. The Swedish automaker is now owned by Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, a Chinese company that bought Volvo Cars from the Ford Motor Company in 2009. Founded in 1927, Volvo has managed to survive in … Read more