Tesla Model 3 Delays Could Lead Buyers to Other Automakers

Freezing air has descended upon my city. Those leisurely mornings of heading out to the car in shorts and a T-shirt have been replaced by scraping windshields free of frost.

I love my electric Nissan Leaf, because I can start and warm it up using an app on my phone while I stay toasty warm inside the house. My Subaru Legacy actually requires me to go outside and start the motor with a key.

This week I needed the Legacy, because my errands required more range than the Leaf could provide. That meant I had to brave the cold, trek outside, and start the Subaru so it would be warm for my family.

When I got back inside, my wife, who was getting ready in the upstairs bathroom, asked why the car was so loud.

“Because it has a gas motor,” I said.

Needless to say, we have become accustomed to driving electric.

We’ve been hoping the next electric car might be a Tesla Model 3, but with production problems pushing back availability of the car, we, like thousands of other drivers, may have to look elsewhere. Continue reading >>>

Has Hyundai Built the First True 3 Series Killer?

Everyone wants a piece of the BMW 3 Series.

The legendary car has been in the U.S. since the 1970s, but reached its pinnacle in the 1990s, which has propelled the car all way into the 21st century with little competition to worry about.

Notice that I didn’t say with little competition. I said, “little competition to worry about.”

Automakers from Audi to Mercedes-Benz and Lexus to Jaguar have fielded competitors to the mighty 3, but none have outshined the Ultimate Driving Machine.

In test after test, the BMW has reigned supreme over other luxury compact sedans. Now, though, the Germans might have reason to start looking over their figurative shoulders, because there’s a Hyundai in the rear-view. Continue reading >>>

Ford Ushers in the Era of the $100,000 Pickup

Ford has a history of being a trendsetter in many ways, but the newest precedents being set by the Michigan automaker don’t bode well for buyers of economical pickups and SUVs.

We already know that the Ford Expedition can approach $80,000 when properly configured. Trucks are set to go even higher.

Sure, we’ll always be able to buy a bare-bones F-150 for a rock-bottom price. But when it’s time to buy one with 4-wheel drive, real towing capacity, and modern luxuries, be prepared to dig a little deeper into your wallet.

How high will pickup prices go? They’re about to cross the $100,000 barrier, and we don’t even know if that’ll be the ceiling. Continue reading >>>

Toyota Ups Performance with Gazoo

If you needed a car for reliable transportation and practical usability, and you didn’t care much for driving dynamics or performance, which brand would you choose?

One of the first to come to mind might be Toyota.

The automaker’s reputation for quality and reliability is legendary. Its design, however, has leaned toward the bland, while performance has been perfectly calibrated to handle any speed limit America could throw at it. Practical, but not exhilarating.

That could change with the introduction of the Gazoo Racing Series. Continue reading >>>

Lincoln and Mazda Next Up to Electrify Everything

Here’s another one to file in the “all cars are going electric” folder.

In the not-so-distant future, we’ll look back on that folder and fondly remember the steps automakers took to wean the driving public away from gas and ease them into the new world of electric driving.

We’ve written, pretty extensively, about upcoming new electric vehicles and even plans by entire countries to phase out gasoline and diesel-powered cars. An electric future is approaching fast, and two more automakers are now committing to doing their part to usher in this new world. Continue reading >>>

2018 Nissan Leaf Debut: Yay or Yawn?

Nissan has been teasing its new electric Leaf for months. The sleek teaser images suggest a racy shape and a whole new Leaf experience.

It also came with the preconceived notion that it would come with a range on par with the Chevy Bolt and Tesla Model 3. Nissan never made specific mention of that, but we all just kind of assumed it would step up to meet the competition.

The new Leaf was unveiled this week, and while Nissan may have expected much fanfare, it debuted to a whole lot of silence. Can anyone else hear the crickets?

The newly redesigned Leaf looks like a Toyota and has the range of, well… a Leaf. Continue reading >>>

Volkswagen Caters to Modern-Day Hippies with ID Buzz

It’s finally happening.

Some 60 years after the Volkswagen Microbus became a symbol of peace, love, and happiness in the United States, a new version will land on dealer floors aimed at the modern, and somewhat affluent, hippie.

The ID Buzz has been a concept floating around the blog-o-sphere for at least six months, and now VW has confirmed that it will indeed go into production. However, it won’t happen until after a smaller electric compact car, simply called the ID, goes on sale by 2020. Continue reading >>>

Chevy Blazer: The Legend (Sort of) Returns

We all know that the Ford Bronco is coming back, probably as the rugged off-roader that we all hoped it would be. That’s certainly good news for the hardcore Bronco fanbase but a little off-putting to the people who prefer their off-roaders to wear a bow tie.

Chevy’s Bronco-buster, the Blazer, slowly morphed into the TrailBlazer and then the Traverse, which rendered it mostly useless on the trails where the Blazer once roamed.

Last week, news started circulating that the Blazer would return for 2019. Exciting, right?

Not so much. Get ready to find out what disappointment feels like, Blazer fans. Continue reading >>>

Autonomous Car Progress: Approaching Level 5

BMW iNext rendering

I thought adaptive cruise control was the coolest thing ever. Simply set the cruise to 70 miles per hour, and the car does the rest, even slowing down to match traffic when speeds drop.

I first experienced adaptive cruise control in 2014, and now, just three years later, we have automakers talking about “level 5” autonomy.

What is level 5? It means a car can control itself in all situations and doesn’t need a driver for anything. We’re not there yet, but some powerful and influential automakers are on the path to making it happen. Before level 5 cars arrive, lower priced cars will receive levels of autonomy that make my adaptive cruise look like technology straight out of 1999. Continue reading >>>