Larry Printz Archive
Let’s face it, when you have a family, you want to grab fun wherever you can find it. So, when choosing a crossover SUV, many of us would prefer a backwoods bruiser to a shopping mall cruiser even if, realistically, the latter will suffice. This is why the 2014 Escape is a great place to start.
Does it seem to you that everyone owns a Toyota Camry, Honda Accord or Nissan Altima? Maybe it’s time to test drive a car that others ignore. It’s not that these overlooked cars and trucks aren’t good. As a matter of fact, they’re all quite good, and they offer attributes that deserve more attention.
The BMW 3 Series. It is the compact premium sports sedan against which all others are measured. Even today, decades after it was first launched, every major automaker uses it as a benchmark in the class.
Newport Beach, Calif. At a recent vehicle reveal, in what could only be called an understatement, Orth Hedrick, Kia Motors America’s vice-president for product planning, said, “we think that this vehicle is really going to shock the market.” There’s little doubt of that.
If you're obsessive about fuel economy, then you might have noticed that over the past couple months your car or truck’s fuel consumption has increased. Blame the polar vortex.
In early February, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced that it will begin taking steps to enable vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication for cars and light-duty trucks. NHTSA says that by allowing V2V, vehicles could exchange basic data, such as speed and position.
If Americans think of diesel engines at all, they remember the unreliable, gutless Oldsmobile diesel engine of the late 1970s and 1980s. Or they think of the diesels from Volkswagen and Mercedes-Benz, which had their loyalists, many of them former owners.
The next time you test drive a new car, you might be in for a shock. ¶ While you would expect a place to stash your stogie or a slot to slip in your copy of Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” you’re in for a surprise. Most likely, that new car won’t accommodate you. ¶
If the 2014 Mazda3 wore a Honda or Toyota badge, there would be a waiting list to buy one. But since it wears a Mazda badge, it’s ignored by myopic car buyers used to buying other brands. Too bad; they don’t know what they’re missing.
The Mercedes-Benz E-Class is like a classic gray suit. It's a safe, conservative choice that looks good no matter where you travel.
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