Archive

Archive for the ‘General Chat’ Category

2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata: New King of the Roadsters?

September 5th, 2014

2016 Mazda MX5 Miata, front

I’ve needed some time to digest this one.

When it was announced that Mazda would unveil its 2016 MX-5 Miata this week, part of me hoped for a design that would blow me out of the water and leave me with nothing to say except to declare Mazda the king of all roadsters.

That didn’t happen. At least not right away.

As I’ve examined the photos and compared the new Miata with past versions and with other roadsters, my thinking is beginning to change. While we don’t know a lot of details yet regarding performance numbers or price, we can assume there won’t be any problems there, because past generations have never disappointed. So for now, we’re left to compare based on design only.

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Shopping, Foreign Cars, General Chat , , ,

New Infiniti Concept Hints at Challenging Panamera, But Why?

September 4th, 2014

Infiniti Q80

For a long time I thought Mitsubishi would be the next car brand to die in the U.S., but now I’m not so sure, because another brand here is showing signs of slowly bleeding out.

Last month, Mitsubishi sales were actually up 29 percent compared with this month last year, while Infiniti sales dropped nearly 23 percent.

Infiniti, the luxury arm of Nissan, suffers from a bit of an identity crisis as it tries to compete with Audi, Lexus, BMW, Mercedes-Benz and, yes, even Porsche.

The problem is that all of those companies do at least one thing very well, be it luxury, performance, panache or all three. Can you name what Infiniti does well?

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Shopping, Foreign Cars, General Chat , ,

The New BMW: A MINI with a Spit Shine?

September 3rd, 2014
Just throw a BMW logo on it and call it good?

Just throw a BMW logo on it and call it good?

There are two kinds of people who buy BMWs:

  1. People who appreciate the dynamics of a true rear-wheel-drive performance machine.
  2. People who like the BMW logo.

As BMW embarks on a new era of vehicle production, it hopes it can please both types of people without alienating the first. Type 2 people really don’t care which wheels are propelling the car forward, while Type 1 people believe anything that’s front-wheel drive is undeserving of the BMW logo. After all, BMW owns MINI, so it can scratch that FWD itch, right?

For a while, BMW carefully walked the line while admitting some vague future plans for a FWD car, but now it seems the German automaker will pull out all the stops and bring at least 6 cars to market that are powered by the same wheels that steer.

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Shopping, Foreign Cars, General Chat , , , ,

Who Negotiates the Best Deals on Cars?

September 2nd, 2014

BMW_E46_front_20080822

Two headlines grabbed my attention this weekend, both of which pertain to the purchasing of cars.

Yes, I know there are plenty of more exciting headlines, such as the production of the 2015 Mustang and spy shots of soon-to-be-revealed new models, but none of that matters if no one is around to buy new and used versions of those cars.

At CarGurus, we want you to get the best deal possible on a car and feel good when we hear that people are negotiating solid buys.

Who are the people getting the best deals on cars these days? Here’s a hint: If you’re a guy, it’s probably not you.

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Shopping, General Chat , , ,

A Jacked-Up Jag and Other Auto Atrocities

September 1st, 2014

jacked up jag

I only saw it for a moment.

While driving out of town and heading north toward my favorite lake, I turned my head, because something odd caught my attention. In a parking lot on the other side of the highway sat what appeared to be an older Jaguar.

In itself, that observation was nothing spectacular. But this Jag was different, because its body sat a good 6 feet above the suspension and tires.

Someone had taken that little Jag and turned it into a monster truck. As a guy who appreciates Jaguars and other non-monster types of vehicles, I don’t understand modifications that take a car and turn it into something it was never meant to be.

We may not understand the motives behind such auto atrocities, but we can stand back, laugh, and silently criticize the cars that no one else will ever want. I will say this, though:

Each of the cars pictured below must have taken a labor of love to create. While these aren’t my taste, at least someone had fun making them.

Continue reading >>>

Car Minded, Classic & Vintage Cars, Domestic Cars, Foreign Cars, General Chat, Trucks & SUVs , , ,

Bostonian Back-to-School Cars, By College

August 29th, 2014

2013 Subaru XV Crosstrek

It’s time to welcome the new and returning students of Boston. All 250,000 of them. In Boston, the first week of September is a very important (and crazy busy) time of year. It’s the beginning of true orientation for new arrivals (and reorientation for returning students) as everyone settles into their new locations and prepares for the year to come. One thing many students may find useful in the Boston area (or anywhere, really) is a car. So why not pick a car that will accommodate the needs of your school, your neighborhood and your future career (if you’re thinking longish-term investments)?

Continue reading >>>

Car Lists, Car Minded, Car Shopping, General Chat

The Best Cars of the ’90s (and One from the ’80s)

August 29th, 2014

BMW E39 M5

Car designers were on their game in the 1960s, but it seems they took a two-decade vacation in the ’70s and ’80s. I’m pretty sure interns used a straight edge and T-square to churn out car designs back then.

Not until the 1990s did the real designers, and their curvalicious designs, come back, along with some quality and performance that turned the ’90s into a golden age for motoring.

That might sound funny, especially being only 15 years removed from the turn of the century, but keep reading for proof that the ’90s provided the jump-start car designers needed to propel motoring into the 21st century.

Continue reading >>>

Car Lists, Car Minded, Car Shopping, Classic & Vintage Cars, General Chat , , , , ,

The Most Exclusive Used Car in America?

August 28th, 2014

Land_cruiser_series_70

A couple of days ago, CarGurus posted a link on its Facebook page to an article listing the top 10 cars we can’t buy in the United States.

It wasn’t a bad list and featured the usual suspects from Seat, Citroen, Holden and Land Rover. The list neglected to mention a true international classic, though, which has soldiered on since 1984 and is still sold new. This vehicle has been marketed and sold around the world, with the exclusion of a few countries in North and South America.

It’ll never be sold new here in the States, but it is possible used versions could be imported.

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Shopping, Classic & Vintage Cars, Foreign Cars, General Chat, Trucks & SUVs , , , ,

Has the Corvette Finally Arrived as a Supercar?

August 27th, 2014

2015 Chevrolet Corvette Z06

In all my years on this planet, never, not once, have I done a double head turn to check out a Corvette.

Corvettes just aren’t my thing. I see them on almost every outing, whether they be models from the early ’60s on the way to a classic car show, models from the ’80s and ’90s being driven by aging gearheads or later models piloted by post-midlife-crisis 50-somethings.

Corvettes are nearly as common as Hondas around here, and their design has never left me with the desire to exert the necessary energy to look twice. In fact, I usually try to look away as soon as possible, because I’m completely turned off by the Corvette and everything it represents.

So earlier this week, when my heart gave an extra jump as I turned a corner and saw a sexy red supercar parallel parked downtown, I quickly turned my head to look again, then knew my lifetime streak was over.

I had looked twice at a Corvette.

Continue reading >>>

Car Industry News, Car Minded, Car Shopping, Domestic Cars, Exotic Cars, General Chat , , ,

The Case for Extended Warranties on Used Cars

August 26th, 2014
Audi Q7 interior

Caution: Don’t use the cupholders

Buying a used Audi seemed like a great idea at the time.

I found the 2008 Q7 on a dealer’s lot and used the CarGurus price analysis tool to determine that the car was a good value. I was smitten with the Audi’s color, strong stance, room for 7 people and pre-installed roof racks. The car was everything I needed, and I was able to negotiate a price significantly lower than the asking amount.

With 88,000 miles on the clock, I figured I had some time before things started going wrong. I was correct in that now I have 98,000 miles and a repair bill that is making me second-guess my choice.

Continue reading >>>

Car Minded, Car Shopping, Foreign Cars, General Chat , , , ,