2021 Ford Bronco Sport

Although the Badlands is one of the most expensive models, it’ll also be the most capable off-road. Along with a 245-hp turbo-four engine—the more potent of the two available powerplants— and an enhanced all-wheel-drive system, the Badlands has a lifted suspension and upgraded dampers for tackling rugged terrain. Ford says it’s only going to build 2000 copies of the First Edition, which will be the most expensive Bronco Sport, but it gets all the goodies from the Bronco Sport Badlands as well as the more luxurious interior and black exterior accents from the Outer Banks model.</p><p>The Bronco Sport rides on the same platform that underpins the compact Escape crossover, and every model has all-wheel drive. A 181-hp, turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder is the base engine, but a 245-hp turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder is also available. Both pair with an eight-speed automatic transmission, but the more powerful engine brings steering-wheel-mounted paddle shifters and upgraded cooling components. The Bronco Sport can also tow between 2000 and 2200 pounds. The Badlands and First Edition pack an assortment of exclusive equipment, including a twin-clutch rear-drive unit with a differential lock. They also have all-terrain tires mounted on 17-inch wheels, a 1.0-inch suspension lift for added ground clearance, and stouter shock absorbers. We noted its hefty steering and firm ride that made it feel truck-like, but not particularly smooth and steady on the highway. Its off-road abilities also exceeded expectations, but just remember that it still has limitations before you take it on more serious trips.

Inside, the Bronco Sport boasts an attractive design and a plethora of popular features. The little ute also has an impressive amount of space and several neat innovations. While its wheelbase is shorter than the Escape, the baby Bronco has an upright seating position and a decent amount of rear-seat legroom. Likewise, its roofline rises in the rear, providing additional headroom and enough cargo volume to fit two mountain bikes. The cargo hold can also be outfitted with a slide-out table that doubles as a workspace, a 400-watt power inverter, and LED lights built into the inside of the rear gate that provides overhead lighting. The rear gate features a glass hatch and a built-in bottle opener. The Badlands and First Edition models come with washable, rubberized flooring and upholstery that is easy to clean. Another neat trick is the storage bin that’s located under their back seats.</p><p>Every Bronco Sport features an 8.0-inch touchscreen that supports Ford’s Sync 3 software. It comes standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, but it can be upgraded with SiriusXM satellite radio and a B&amp;O audio system. In addition to touch-sensitive controls and voice commands, the infotainment interface can be operated with hard buttons as well as a volume and tuning knob.

The 2021 Ford Bronco Sport is the baby brother of the all-new, off-road-ready Bronco SUV, and a viable alternative to Jeep’s smaller models. With a boxy design that’s both cool and cute plus numerous innovative features, the Ford is poised to be popular. Every model comes with all-wheel drive, a host of driver assists, and a spacious cabin. For once, the Sport moniker is put to good use, because the little Bronco has enough interior space to carry two mountain bikes, as well as a configurable cargo area that transforms into a mobile basecamp. Most models will be a perfect companion for those buyers with “active lifestyles.” But the Bronco Sport also has capabilities that make it worthy of sharing one of the Blue Oval’s most storied SUV nameplates.

Automotive Reviews SUV

2021 Mercedes A35 4Matic-Automotive Review

The Mercedes-Benz A35 aims to target the young crowd looking to delve into the luxury ride with sporty aspirations. Packed into the A35 is plenty of features, styling, and performance for the price tag. The 302-turbocharged four launches from a dead stop, and roars like a banshee that surely delight your desire for performance. The subtle slope on the roof from back to front, the cascading curve line on the side paneling , and the intricate front end really make this compact look agile and elegant. Inside the elegance continues with classic Mercedes styling to the dashboard, air vents, and a generous screen gauge combined with touchscreen infotainment display. Tying everything together is a modern cabin-lining ambient lighting to really wow the passengers. Though it’s the littlest car in the Mercedes lineup, the A35 sits atop the A-class with an AMG-enhanced turbocharged 4MATIC. However, if that doesn’t do it for you, perhaps its slightly larger platform-mate, the CLA, will; it can be had with a rowdy 382-hp four-cylinder.

In Canada we have the option of choosing the A35 in either sedan or hatchback. The neighbors to the south will only have the Sedan. The comparisons between the two are 420 litres of seats-up capacity in the sedan compared to the hatchback’s 370 litres, but the hatchback configuration is much more dynamic. 

Under the A35’s hood sits an AMG enhanced turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder that produces 302 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. All-wheel drive comes standard, and the seven-speed dual-clutch automatic boasts a launch-control feature that propels acceleration from a complete standstill. The hatchback itself being a lower profile and agile vehicle, the quickness and response was appreciated. The optional adaptive dampers for a more superior sport feel and handling prestige are nice, but this comes with a bit of stiffness and jolt when hitting the occasional pot hole or expansion joint. 

Inside the cabin, the feeling is definitely snug. This is common with a sporty vehicle and the A35 is nothing short of that , as well as Mercedes staying true to its AMG brand. Starting with the steering wheel, the perforated leather is wrapped throughout, with the signature straight bottom. Paddle-shifters for manual control of the seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission comes standard. A35s cabin features a true “wow factor” reminiscent of any Miami club. The 64-color ambient-light system complete with backlit center vents comes standard this year. If you want a little more luxury, Mercedes offers real wood accents in place of the standard aluminum trim as well as leather upholstery. I would say the wood looks a bit out of place in something that appears to be going for a certain “look” and feel, but to each there own. As the smallest of AMG’s models, the A-class will undoubtedly be a tight fit for some, but we find its rear seat accommodates most people reasonably well and we had zero complaints from passengers. 

While it’s not unique to the A35 strictly, the double widescreen display made up of two LCD monitors- one screen dedicated for the gauges and the other controlling the infotainment system-protected by one long piece of glass stretching across the dash. Drivers have the ability to control the MBUX infotainment system by way of steering-wheel buttons, touchpad on the center console, manually tapping the touchscreen, or direct voice command. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration comes standard. Mercedes provides five USB-C ports throughout the cabin plus an eight-speaker stereo. Optional though, you can upgrade to a 12-speaker sound system made by Burmester sound system. 

Pricing: 

AMG A 35 4MATIC Hatch $51,100

The Mercedes-Benz A35 is about more than just getting from point A to point B quickly in a straight line, though. It is great at winding its way down twisty roads, too, although it does it in a manner that is better described as surefooted and predictable rather than playful and fun. This does mean it is very easy to drive quickly, though.

The standard four-wheel-drive system is able to judge whether you are better off with power going to the front or the rear wheels and it adjusts accordingly. This helps get you around corners in a more suitable fashion.

The A35 borrows a feature from Mercedes’ more expensive AMG GT 4 Door model – an adjustable suspension using a dial on the wheel.

Pop it into the most comfortable setting and the A35 settles down well on long motorway journeys. The large wheels mean that there is a bit more noisy.

You can also opt for a host of driver aids that’ll let it brake, accelerate, blind spot detection and lane assist – perfect for taking the stress out of rush-hour traffic.

Mercedes-AMG A35 4MATIC Hatchback 

VEHICLE TYPE
front-engine, all-wheel-drive, 5-passenger, 4-door sedan

PRICE AS TESTED
$52,705 (base price: $45,945)

ENGINE TYPE
turbocharged and intercooled DOHC 16-valve inline-4, aluminum block and head, direct fuel injection

Displacement
122 in3, 1991 cm3

Power
302 hp @ 5800 rpm

Torque
295 lb-ft @ 3000 rpm

TRANSMISSION
7-speed dual-clutch automatic

CHASSIS
Suspension (F/R): struts/multilink

Brakes (F/R): 13.8-in vented, cross-drilled disc/12.9-in vented, cross-drilled disc

Tires: Michelin Pilot Sport 4S, 235/35ZR-19 (91Y) MO1

DIMENSIONS
Wheelbase: 1.57m

Length: 4.43m

Width: 1.99m

Height: 1.4m

Passenger volume: 1 210 L

Trunk volume: 370 L 

Curb weight: 3513 lb

EPA FUEL ECONOMY

Combined/city/highway: 8.7/9.8/7.5 L/100km 

Automotive Reviews Car
2020-Lincoln-Aviator-Cover

2020 Lincoln Aviator – Automotive Review

2020-Lincoln-Aviator-Cover

2020 Lincoln Aviator – Automotive Review

Refined luxury and top performance elevate this SUV to new heights over the competition

Taking some styling cues from its big brother, this sibling is ready to impress. The three-row SUV has plenty of room inside and small enough to be agile in tight places.

Aviator grille has the Lincoln logo prominently in the center with a field of repeating Lincoln logo like shapes. Brilliant design and adds class to an already classy vehicle.

The Aviator is equipped with Co-Pilot360, which is a technology that has your back while driving. It includes evasive steering assist, reverse braking assist, active parking assist, lane centering, adaptive cruise control, and traffic sign recognition. Pixel LED adaptive headlights to shine further while driving on the highway and at slower speeds the ability to cast a larger light pool helping to illuminate potential hazards. The adaptive dynamic bending lighting uses camera technology to read road signs and lane markings to pre-illuminate the direction the road is heading. I drove by a sign that said Cliff, and I was worried about what it might do! You can sync your smartphone with the Lincoln app and utilize your phone as a key. As you approach the vehicle, the headlights, taillights, and a welcome mat is projected under the doors, all done in sequence, gradually reaching full illumination. The interior is well laid out and very comfortable, typical of what you would expect from a high-end SUV, but wait, there is more. The warning chimes are musical notes by the Detroit Symphony orchestra. You can smell the luxury as you drive down the road. I was so wrapped up in it. I rolled down the window and asked the car next to me if he had any gray Poupon. Ok, maybe not. A lot of thought went into the design of the interior, excellent use of wood styling and easy to use buttons are well placed, except the touch screen. At first, I thought someone left their iPad in the dash, but no, it’s the infotainment system. That’s about the only thing that looked out of place. Everything else looked great.

Mileage numbers are 13.7 L/100km City / 9.7 L/100km Highway

The Aviator comes standard with a Twin-turbo 3.0L V6 engine that creates 400 horsepower and 415 lb-ft of torque. The Grand Touring model comes with the same twin-turbo 3.0L V6 but adds an advanced electric powertrain that combines to produce 494 horsepower and 630 lb-ft of torque.

If you are looking for luxury without sacrificing performance, then take a test flight; I think you will be pleasantly surprised.

2 models to choose from. Lincoln Aviator reserve with a starting price of $63,821 and the Lincoln Aviator Grand Touring. $75,083.

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Toyo-Tires-BJ-Baldwin-Cover-Photo

Toyo Tires – Open Country H/T II- Review

Toyo-Tires-BJ-Baldwin-Cover-Photo

Toyo Tires – Open Country H/T II- Review

A wholly-owned subsidiary of Toyo Tire & Rubber Co. Ltd., distributes a complete line of premium replacement tires for high performance cars, luxury vehicles, light trucks, and SUVs as well as commercial trucks, buses, off-road vehicles, and construction applications.

The vision to manufacture great tires began in August 1945, when the founding president, Mr. Rikimatsu Tomihisa, established the Toyo Tire & Rubber Co, Ltd. in Japan.

In 1982, Toyo Tires established a Canadian subsidiary. From a small office just outside of Vancouver, Toyo Tire Canada Inc. began warehousing and distributing passenger, light truck, and commercial truck tires. Through a network of independent tire dealers, the Toyo Tires brand began to grow in Canada.

The first tires manufactured in North America to bear the Toyo Tires brand occurred in the late 1980s when the company began producing commercial tires in Mt. Vernon, Illinois.

Today, the company’s Canadian headquarters are in Richmond, British Columbia, and distribution is supported by nearly 90,000 square feet of warehousing in BC, with additional warehouses in Ontario and Quebec.

Toyo Tire has a new tire for the Canadian market. The Open Country H/T 11. This tire is an All-Season Light Truck highway tire. The center tread of the tire consists of 3 ribs that are designed to increase wet and dry traction while improving highway stability. The multi-wave sipes on the tread reduce irregular wear, giving this tire a smoother and quieter ride. There are two different sidewall designs. The first is a conservative design, and the second is a more aggressive one that improves traction in deep mud, slush or snow. The Open Country H/T 11 is backed with an impressive treadwear warranty, 80,000 km, and 5-year workmanship and materials.

We decided to install these tires on a Toyota Highlander to put them to the test. Samantha Syrenne is a new mother that leads a hectic lifestyle. Going to University during the week and while running errands around town with her baby girl. Her old tires had serious wear problems on the front despite having her tires regularly rotated and serviced at the local Toyota dealer. She expressed concern about regularly over correcting the steering on the highway and excessive noise at over 50 KMH. We had the Open Country H/T 11 tires installed on a weeknight so she could have it ready to go to school the next morning. Her first drive was an eye-opener. The issues had gone, and the vehicle drove smooth and quietly down the highway.

We asked her a few questions:

Would you say that this tire improves the way your vehicle handles?

Samantha… It is like a new truck. I look forward to the drive now.

Would you recommend these tires?

Samantha… I would defiantly recommend these tires. I am happy with the results.

Would you like us to switch them back now that the test is over?

Samantha… Give me my keys and watch me drive away.

I would say that test was very positive and glad we could improve the handling and drivability of her vehicle. For more information visit toyotires.ca

Features:

SYMMETRIC, NON-DIRECTIONAL TREAD DESIGN
Improves all season traction and tire life.

MULTI-WAVE SIPES
Improves the wear life of the tire by minimize irregular wear for a smoother, quieter ride.

DUAL BUTTRESS & SIDEWALL DESIGN
The sidewall design also helps improve traction in deep mud slush or snow.

GROOVE DIMPLES – TAPERED SHOULDER SLITS
Dimples in the tire grooves and tapered slits in the sidewall expand as the tire wears helping to maintain good wet performance throughout the tire’s life

VARIABLE PITCH TREAD DESIGN
Varying the angles and position of the tread blocks reduces road noise for a more comfortable ride.

FOUR WIDE CIRCUMFERENTIAL GROOVES
Improves water and slush evacuation for better all-season traction.

OPTIMIZED CENTER BLOCK ARRANGEMENT
An optimized design also reduces road noise for a more comfortable ride.

LARGER INTERLOCKING OUTER BLOCKS
Locking the blocks reduces deformation which causes irregular wear for longer tread life and ride comfort.

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Product Reviews
2019_Toyota_RAV4_Trail-Cover

2019 Toyota RAV4 – Automotive Review

2019_Toyota_RAV4_Trail-Cover

2019 Toyota RAV4 – Automotive Review

The 2019 Toyota Rav4 Trail AWD is ready to hit the dirt.

Looks:

The 2019 Toyota Rav4 is here in a fifth-generation model, with a bold new design, one that many people are happy to see. The Toyota RAV4 has been one of those vehicles that people see on the roads every day and it started to blend into the background. Over the past few years, the Canadian built Rav4 has kept the competition at bay and has been the best-selling vehicle in its class. This Rav4 is quite exciting, sleek body lines, lower, a little wider and longer making this more aerodynamic. Swept-back headlights and a more aggressive front end are just some of the changes made. The rear lift-gate features a one-touch operation that has selectable memory height settings, perfect for my family where my wife had it set so low I could barely get my arm in and I had it set so she would need a step ladder to close it.

The Trail edition takes the Rav4 a little further into the backcountry so the average outdoor enthusiast can enjoy what others have and still have a comfortable vehicle on the road.                                       

In The Cab:

Ample use of soft-touch materials used throughout the interior. Comfortable front seats and rear seats that take in to consideration the comfort of your passengers. 60/40 split fold-down with reclining seatbacks that are just as comfortable as the front seats and lots of legroom too. The driver’s seat is a six-way power-adjustable, and the cargo area has a capacity of 1.09m and 2.08m with the rear seats folded down.

Safety first:

Many safety items are standard in this Rav4. Dual-stage driver and passenger airbags, driver knee airbags, front seat-mounted side airbags, roll-sensing front, and rear head/ side curtain airbags. Star safety system includes vehicle stability control, traction control, anti-lock brakes, electronic brake-force distribution, brake assist, and smart stop technology. There are also lane departure alert, blind-spot monitor, and rear cross-traffic alert available as an option, which I think should be standard on all new models.

Roadworthy:

I am impressed with how comfortable the interior is. You can hold a conversation with your children in the back without having to yell over the road noise. I found the 4 cylinder engine to be smooth and responsive although when the Rav4 is called upon to pass or travel up a hill under load, the engine does make a whiney roar and is very noticeable in the cabin.

Verdict:

Improving upon a vehicle that has a proven track record, while keeping up with the latest technologies, one reason Toyota continues to be so popular today.

Power:

A 2.5 Litre, 4 cylinder gas engine with 203 horsepower and 172 lb-ft of torque mated to an 8 speed automatic electronically controlled transmission with sequential shift mode.

Pump frequency:

9.2/7.1 L/100 km (city/highway) 

Warranty support:

Basic 36 months/ 60,000 km

Powertrain 60 months/ 100,000 km

Corrosion peroration Unlimited km

Sticker price:

Trail Edition $38,960 CAD

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Automotive Reviews SUV

2019 Ford Expedition – Automotive Review

2019 Ford Expedition – Automotive Review

First light on a sunny summer Saturday morning, a hint of smoke in the air from the wildfires burning in the North, We set out on our Expedition to Vancouver Island in the 2019 Ford Expedition.

Enough room for six of us to fit quite comfortably. I like the fact the second row had the optional bucket seats without a center console; third-row passengers can quickly get out without having to move the second seat. The seats did have the tilt and slide option, but it wasn’t required. Arrived at the Horseshoe bay terminal early and gave them our reservation number, I can’t imagine taking a chance without reservations especially these days with so much traffic coming and going from the island. A short wait, and we soon found ourselves on board the Coastal Renaissance ferry. After a few hours we had crossed the Straight Georgia and were ready to disembark. Using the Ford voice-activated navigation system, I entered our next destination, Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park in Parksville. Heading through Nanaimo and onto the island highway I noticed how smooth the acceleration was and how quick the ten-speed transmission shifted. Powered by a 3.5L EcoBoost engine the Expedition produces 400hp and 480 lb-ft of torque, which provides plenty of power for this vehicle. The Rathtrevor Park is 347 hectares in size, which includes 2 kilometers of coastline and a magnificent sandy beach.

We spent some time just walking along the shore and looking at all the views, but there was more to see, so off we went. Heading west we entered Cathedral Grove and were surrounded by 75m tall Douglas Fir trees. I could only imagine what the first explorers thought when they first came across these magnificent trees. The first Ford Expedition came out in 1997 to replace the full-size Bronco. The base model came with a 4.6L V8 that produced 215hp and fuel economy that would have you thinking twice before you drove it. Despite this the Expedition has been one of the longest-lasting vehicles on the road. We were hiking along the trails through all the green moss and boston ferns with the towering trees going up what seems like forever. Nature gives us a sense of being at peace, and everybody was silent as we walked just taking in all the beauty. We passed a few people, and I don’t think they even noticed us as they too were in awe with the scenery.

We followed the trail back to our vehicle and continued with a quick stop in Port Alberni to get some supplies and then on to Tofino. Following the Pacific Rim Highway we made our way to Sprout Lake, which is home for the Martin Mars Water Bombers. If you find yourself with some time on your next trip to Tofino, stop at the visitor center on Bomber Base Road, and you will be amazed at how big these planes are. Just before Tofino you drive through Pacific Rim National Park Reserve with great views of beaches and ocean waves. A few minutes later you enter Tofino. Lots to see and do here, walks along the beach, hiking trails through the forest and just hanging out with people that know how to take life more relaxed and enjoy, I wish we had planned for more time but our day has come to an end, so we headed back to the grind. The hustle and bustle of our daily lives, which is Vancouver, but we will never forget to reflect on our Expedition and look forward to our next.

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Automotive Reviews SUV
2020 Kia Telluride

2020 Kia Telluride – Automotive Review

2020 Kia Telluride

2020 Kia Telluride – Automotive Review

What’s in a name? The KIA Telluride is an SUV that is new to the market. The question is what is Telluride?

Is it

  1. Motorcycle slang for I can tell you ride
  2. A new attraction at Disneyland
  3. Lyrics in a Rap Song
  4. A small town in Colorado

If you answered 4, you are correct.

Telluride is located in the Southwest portion of Colorado and was once a silver mining camp. It is now known as a popular ski destination. 

What better vehicle to take the family on a ski trip, than the 2020 KIA Telluride with available seating for eight and a very well-appointed interior. Now KIA could have just extended the length of the Sorento and given it a new name, but no, KIA has reinvented the SUV and given it some unique features and modern tech that sets it apart from others.  The interior features wood grain trim with soft-touch material throughout. The center dash features a 10.25” multimedia screen with navigation, easily reached by both driver and passenger. Select the quite mode, and the system mutes the sound in the second and third-row seats; anybody with young children will appreciate this feature. There is also a grandparent mode, it alerts the grandchild’s parents when the child is crying and informs them that they need to come a deal with it, ok maybe that last one isn’t available, but one can hope. Available heated and cooled premium leather seats, one-touch walk in side access slides the second row forward to enter the third row. Driving the Telluride over different road conditions is a breeze by activating Drive/Terrain Mode and lets you comfortably navigate mud, snow, rain or any other challenges you’ll meet on the road with the integrated all-wheel drive.  There are four different drive modes; Smart, Eco, Sport, and Comfort. Snow, mud and sand terrain modes increase traction control to handle any road conditions. The standard all-wheel-drive adds two additional drive moves. AWD Lock that transfers the power evenly to all four wheels, giving you total control on off-road conditions.

Looks

The moment you first look at the Telluride, the front grille and badging stand out giving the frontend an aggressive look. LED headlights are surrounded by an amber led light strip that creates day time running lights. The rest of the body has smooth sweeping lines to the back where it meets the LED taillights and the contoured rear spoiler.

Engine

A 3.8L V6 GDI engine produces 291 horsepower and 262 lb-ft of torque mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. This combination of power, size, and weight have given this vehicle a tow rating of 5000lbs.

Safety

A total of 7 airbags including dual front, dual side, and dual front side seat are standard. Blindspot collision avoidance, lane follow assist, driver attention warning, advance forward collision avoidance assist are also included

 

The Drive

Everything about this SUV screams comfort, from the moment you enter the cabin, the seats are comfortable and supportive while all the functions a laid out in front of you. The heads up display keeps your eye on the road while quickly glancing at speed and navigation. Driving down the street feels like you are driving your living room couch, smooth and comfortable, lots of power to accelerate up hills and very responsive brakes. Overall I would have to say “a very enjoyable ride.”

Fuel Economy

  • 12.5L/100km City
  • 9.5L/100KM Highway

MSRP CND

  • EX   $44,995
  • SX   $49,995
  • SX Limited   $52,995
  • SX Limited with Nappa  $53,995
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Automotive Reviews SUV

2019 Ford Ranger – Experience

2019 Ford Ranger – Experience

We all know the saying, ‘Built Ford Tough” and we’ve seen that proven in the Raptor and F-series, but can the new Ranger live up to this? I take the new 2019 Ford Ranger on an epic journey through the back roads of the Whistler valley to find out if little brother has what it takes.

Photo Credit – Mike Markov

Our journey begins in Richmond, BC, with a tour around the different available models. I have to say the styling is very sharp; it is a similar shape to the F150 but proportioned down perfectly to create an all-new vehicle. With three different trim levels, XL, XLT, and Lariat, and surprisingly no stripped-down base model with a hand-cranked window lever and a bench seat here. All very similar models with a few added features make this Ranger good at all price levels.

Driving through city traffic, the Ranger is quick to accelerate and very easy to stop which I learned first-hand having to brake hard as a driver decided to turn left in front of me with no signal, oh yes did I mention I was in Vancouver?  After a short time later, we were through downtown and into Stanley Park. The Ranger is equipped with a 2.3 Litre EcoBoost 4-cylinder turbocharged engine and a 10-speed automatic transmission. The engine produces 270 horsepower and generates 310-pound-feet of torque.

The first stop on the trip is the Sea to Sky Gondola, which if you have never been before it is a must see when traveling highway 99.  Incredible views of Howe Sound, Squamish, and the surrounding Coast mountains. There are plenty of things to do at the top; a restaurant with a large deck to sit out and take in the views, some hiking trails, a suspension bridge, and even rock climbing. Word of advice make sure you’re well hydrated first before attempting the rock climbing, especially on a hot day. You don’t want to be hanging off a rock only to find your head spinning and heat exhaustion taking over, which was a situation I unfortunately found myself in, adding insult to injury by having a toddler pulling on my pant leg asking me to leave the playground. 

Back on the road and heading through Squamish on the way to Whistler, this highway has gone through many upgrades leading up to the 2010 Olympics, and I was amazed how quick it is to reach Whistler. The hotel for the night is the Nita lake lodge which is very different from a typical hotel you would find in the village; this luxury lodge is just 5 min away from the village nestled next to Nita Lake with beautiful views of Whistler Mountain. This resort has world-class dining, and the staff are exceptional. Morning brings on great anticipation, as today is the day we get to take the Ranger out off-roading. 

A short drive away I find the entrance to the Callaghan Valley which leads to the many forest service roads that first cut through this valley. Plenty of new growth forest throughout and some of the trails are covered in brush making it tight for a full-size truck to get through but manageable with this mid-size truck. Traversing the switchbacks, the elevation gain becomes apparent, and the views are incredible. Some steep sections with a lot of loose rock. I switched on the terrain management system and selected the gravel function. The choices are; gravel and snow, mud and ruts, or sand. Each mode alters transmission gearing, throttle response, and steering control to help navigate the terrain. This is very similar to the Ford Raptor and provides excellent traction without wheel hop or loss of control. The road had a few sections that were washed out from the melting snow. The hill decent feature allows the truck to control the braking so you can concentrate on steering and avoiding obstacles as it descends some 28-degree hills. The Ranger I was driving featured a rear differential lock that came in handy when I noticed one wheel hanging in midair.   After a long day of four wheeling it was nice to be back down and back on the pavement. The transition from off-road to the pavement is quite an effort for most vehicles and to have the ability to provide firm but agile suspension off-road, and a smooth, comfortable ride on the road was seamless in the Ford Ranger.

It looks like little brother might even have a few tricks that big brother doesn’t know about. The 2019 Ford Ranger, Ford tough certified.

Key Features

  • Models
    • XL – Starting at $30,596
    • XLT – Starting at $35,139
    • Lariat – Starting at $41,389
  • Fuel Efficiency
    • 11.8L/100km City
    • 9.8L/100km City
  • Engine
    • 2.3L EcoBoost
    • 270hp
    • 310ft/lbs. torque
  • Towing
    • maximum 1650-lb. payload
    • 7,500-lb. tow ratings
  • Optional FX4 Offroad package, with Terrain Management System and Trail Control
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Automotive Reviews Experiences Truck

2019 Nissan Rogue – Automotive Review

2019 Nissan Rogue – Automotive Review

The 2019 Nissan Rogue is a compact crossover, which has had significant updates over the 2018 refresh, and remains for the longtime best seller in Nissan's lineup

Overview

I happened to find myself driving during the bad snow storm we had a while back. The snow was deep, and the clearing crews were none existent. Two tracks on the highway were the only path I had to follow. Passing many vehicles that were spun out and left abandoned on the side of the road, I realized although I was traveling at a safe speed, I had yet to experience any spinning or sliding. The Rogue was continuing to push on despite the uncleaned snow that was pushing up over the grill. It was almost as if the vehicle was telling me, relax, I got this. I came to my exit and found four semi-truck and trailers stopped and parked because they could not make it up to the ramp. I carefully drove around them and up the exit without as much as a slip. This vehicle is indeed a snow machine; I have never felt safer driving late at night in the snow than I did in this Rogue

Options

There are three trim levels, S, SV, and SL Platinum with Pro Pilot assist. The base S comes standard with 17-inch steel wheels, EZ Flex seating system, 6 way manual driver’s seat, 4 way manual front passenger’s seat, cruise control with steering wheel controls, a tilt and telescopic steering wheel, hands-free text messaging assistant, rearview monitor, keyless entry and a four-speaker audio system 127 mm colour display.

The SV model adds 17” aluminum wheels, power panoramic moon roof, heated front seats and a 6-way power adjustable driver’s seat with power lumbar support.

The SL trim level starts with the SV model’s standard equipment and adds 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels, dual-zone automatic temperature control, auto-dimming inside rearview mirror. The SL’s Leather package includes leather upholstery plus heated front seats; a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob, heated side mirrors, a six-way power driver seat, a one-touch up/down driver window.

Option packages for the SL include the Premium package, which consists of an intelligent around view monitor, navigation system with 178 mm colour touch screen monitor, eight-speaker Bose audio systems with a six-CD/MP3 changer, Sirius satellite radio ready, steering wheel mounted audio controls and ND Richbass sub-woofer. This package also gives you a Power liftgate and an around view monitor.

Safety

There are dual stage front driver and passenger airbags with seat belt sensors, Roof-mounted curtain side-impact airbags, and driver/passenger seat mounted side-impact supplemental air bags. The vehicle is also equipped with 4-wheel ABS and traction control systems, rollover sensor,Anti-theft with immobilizer key systems. Vehicle speed sensitive electric power steering adjusts automatically to become more comfortable at lower speed and firms up when accelerating.

Power

A 2.5 Litre, 16 valve DOHC engine with 170 hp and 175 lb-ft of torque, matched with an Xtronic continuously variable transmission with sport mode.

Pump Frequency

  • S  9.1 /7.1 L/100 km (city/highway)
  • SV  9.1 /7.1 L/100 km (city/highway)
  • SL  9.6 /7.51 L/100 km (city/highway)

Warranty Support

  • 3 year/ 60,000km complete vehicle warranty
  • 3 year roadside assistance
  • 8 year/ 130,000km power train warranty
  • 5 year unlimited km corrosion perforation warranty.
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Automotive Reviews SUV