Accord Drops V6 in Favor of 4-Cylinder Turbo

The Honda Accord V6 was one of those cars that American families once loved for its comfort, reliability, responsiveness, and speed. It was a stalwart in the Accord lineup and the go-to choice for power-hungry parents.

You might have noticed the past tense I used just now. Over the last couple of years, people stopped buying the V6 Accord in favor the more fuel-friendly 4-cylinder version. Plus, the V6 engine in the Accord was basically a 20-year-old design that didn’t hold up to today’s emissions and performance standards.

With the unveiling of the new 2018 Accord, we’ve learned that the V6 is the latest casualty of turbo-powered 4-cylinders. While the Accord V6 is officially a thing of the past, there’s plenty to look forward to as the big Honda sedan morphs into the future. Continue reading >>>

Honda Ridgeline: The Best Midsize Pickup?

2017 Honda Ridgeline

Don’t say you saw this coming: The Honda Ridgeline is making a name for itself as a competitive midsize pickup.

In fact, it’s creating a new niche of buyers who want the handling, ride, and everyday drivability of a sedan with the ability to haul loads of stuff every now and then.

The Chevy Colorado and Toyota Tacoma offer that combination platter of capability, but the Ridgeline turns the dial up to 11, and buyers are taking notice.

The thing is, Honda is scooping up buyers before Ford has the chance with its all-new Ranger. Continue reading >>>

Fog Lights: The Latest in Obsolete Car Tech

Fog is a known killer on highways around the world, but a popular accessory to battle the soupy stuff is starting to fade away from today’s vehicles.

The New York Times says,

Fog was a factor in nearly 20 percent of deadly multicar pileups involving 10 or more vehicles.

Fog is especially prevalent in some regions, including much of the Southeast, northern New England, the Pacific Northwest and the Central Valley of California, and it forms most often in winter. Deadly multicar crashes generally occur when cars and trucks traveling at interstate speed drive into what is essentially a low-lying cloud and quickly lose visibility. Drivers may not see the slowed cars ahead until it is too late, with one vehicle crashing into the next, including huge tractor-trailers.

Fog presents a real danger, and many car shoppers make sure their new cars are equipped with fog lights. In fact, the lower lights are expected on higher-end cars, trucks, and SUVs.

Some automakers, though, are removing the lights, because they’re no longer deemed necessary as headlight technology improves. Yes, add fog lights to the once-common list of features on cars that are going away forever. Continue reading >>>

Boston to Nashville: A Cheap Car Challenge Results in a Bargain Mazda RX-7

Cheap_car_challenge

When people shop for cars, they typically stay local. But a new CarGurus study revealed that expanding your search to other metro areas can yield substantial savings. Buying a Ford Mustang in Miami, FL, rather than Albany, NY, could save you close to $2,000. Picking up a BMW 3 Series in Albuquerque, NM, instead of Dallas, TX, might net you as much as $1,900 in savings—all after considering the cost of airfare and gas for the drive back home. Continue reading >>>

Mercedes-Benz A-Class Coming for the Millennials

Any luxury automaker that doesn’t have a premium compact on the market is missing out on a huge, and potentially imperative, market.

No longer are BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi in the business of selling only large luxury vehicles to well-off Boomers. The market has shifted in favor of millennials, and with that change comes the need for a smaller breed of luxury-brand vehicles.

That’s why we’re seeing mini crossovers, tiny sedans, and hatchbacks from Audi and BMW. Now, after 20 years of existence in European countries, the Mercedes-Benz A-Class will join the party. Continue reading >>>

Honda Civic Type R Priced, Proves Demand for Performance

2018 Honda Civic Type R

Dire predictions of an entire generation having zero emotion toward cars have fueled predictions of an unprecedented “buyers strike” in America.

That’s probably not going to happen.

A love, and a need, for cars will continue to dominate the landscape, even as younger folks grow into mature, car-buying adults.

I reference the ferocious new Honda Civic Type R as proof. Continue reading >>>

Tesla Remains Perfect, Audi Hopes to Follow Its Lead

Safety is quickly becoming a trademark quality for Tesla. The California-based electric carmaker builds the Model S sedan, which achieved the best safety rating of any car ever tested back in 2013.

Now it can lay claim to something else no other automaker has ever been able to accomplish: a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) perfect score for an SUV in its 5-star crash-testing system.

Yes, the Tesla Model X is now the safest SUV ever tested by the government agency. Continue reading >>>

Should You Be Worried About Replacing a Used EV’s Batteries?

2017 Chevy Bolt

One of the benefits of owning an electric car is not needing to buy gasoline. The cost savings add up year after year, even when you include the cost of electrons to recharge the batteries.

Two of the biggest concerns since the advent of hybrid and EV technology are electric range and potential cost of replacing battery packs.

Range anxiety has mostly been solved as EV range steadily increases to over 200 miles per charge. Replacing battery packs has, so far, proven to be a non-issue, but it’s bound to become one as the earliest EVs continue to age. How much should people expect to pay once the inevitable happens?

About half of what the car cost new, at least according to Chevrolet. Continue reading >>>

Will Subaru Become the Next Toyota?

Last week a friend on Facebook shared a post from Toyota that compared the new 86 sports car to the classic 2000GT.

The comparison inspired a heated conversation, with most people arguing that the 86 is a cheap RWD sports car designed for proper weight distribution and mass production, while the classic 2000GT is an ultra-rare Jaguar-esque stunner.

Sitting next to the 2000GT, the 86 looked, in the band Train’s words, like “a crappy purple Scion.”

Then someone else said, “If Subaru made one, gave it AWD, and upped the power, I’d make it my daily driver.”

Subaru is on a 7-year sales march, with each year breaking the previous year’s record. The company certainly seems immune to sagging industry sales, and is in fact working on a new BRZ sports car. But is it the car everyone wants? Continue reading >>>

Will President Trump Block German Car Sales?

BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Audi are symbols of success and prestige.

Owning one is a goal more people are realizing, as BMW sold more than 2.3 million cars last year. Mercedes-Benz was just behind at about 2.2 million, while Audi unloaded some 1.8 million vehicles.

BMW builds its SUVs right here in the States, and Mercedes-Benz has a manufacturing plant in Alabama. Needless to say, German automakers contribute a fair share to the American economy, and well-off car buyers are taking home their wares in record numbers.

Yet the U.S. president is not happy and has vowed to block the “very bad” Germans from exporting cars to our country.

Never mind the fact that the president owns at least one Rolls-Royce (a company owned by BMW) and a Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren. Continue reading >>>