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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Automotive Reviews SUV
Yamaha-Roadstar-Warrior-Cover

Yamaha Roadstar Warrior – Guest Review

Yamaha-Roadstar-Warrior-Cover
Jamie Burgis

Jamie Burgis

Yamaha Roadstar Warrior – Guest Review

Guest writer Jamie Burgis take us for a cruise on the powerful, yet comfortable Yamaha Roadstar Warrior

I start with a quick walk of the vehicle. My first impressions of the motorcycle; I noticed the long sleek lines, curvature of the body, and powerful stance. It looks fast standing still. This motorcycle would fall in the class of sport cruiser, trying to offer a good amount of power along with comfortability for longer rides. When you first get on the bike, you notice it feels like a hefty bike with a long wheelbase and a substantial weight. I find the saddle large, comfortable, and they make you feel secure. This model also includes a small stock passenger seat. The handlebars are quite agreeable, just below shoulder height for me. The mirrors are reasonable in size and are well-positioned, which is essential as it provides excellent visibility. Seeing well and being seen are important parts of feeling confident on any bike. The rest of the controls and display are well laid out and easy to read but sadly no gas gauge.

I headed out on a beautiful spring morning, the feeling of the crisp, clean air and the sun on my shoulders was invigorating. Feeling free as a bird as I glided along, secure in the comfort of the symbiotic relationship between man and machine. A feeling of peaceful joy came over me, rolling down the twists, turns, and straightaways of a long scenic country road. Childlike glee as I twisted the throttle braced against the wind. It was such a relaxing feeling being able to live in the moment, only focusing on the ride and the road ahead. All the stresses of daily life quickly melting away. Peace and solitude are rare and valuable things in today’s world, so finding them wherever you can is vital for everyone. I, as many others do, find it in the open road and through my unique experience of riding.

With such a large displacement, I immediately noticed this is a very loud and powerful motorcycle. The throttle response is incredible and could be a little bit scary for some people. I found it had excellent torque and acceleration all the way through the gears at low or high RPMs. This is not a bike for beginners. Be prepared to have to hold on tight with a bike like this. I found the handling to also be exceptional for a bike of this size and weight. It leaned over smoothly and effortlessly. I could feel it gripping the road in the corners. The braking threshold was great on this machine, which is super important when riding with this kind of power.

Overall, this was a very fun bike to ride. A very powerful yet relaxing ride, with a very capable engine, nice upright riding position. I could comfortably ride this all day. Some of the drawbacks I found were having absolutely no storage and very limited options available for this bike, and yes, the aforementioned missing gas gauge! Some of the pluses are the cost and reliability of this model. If speed and comfort are important attributes for you, then I would definitely rank this among the more interesting models in the sport/cruiser class

Make: Yamaha

Model: Roadstar Warrior

Engine: 1698cc Fuel injected, belt drive, air-cooled

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Automotive Reviews Motorcycle
2020 Toyota Supra - Cover

2020 Toyota Supra – Video Review

2020 Toyota Supra - Cover

2020 Toyota Supra – Video Review

Introducing the all-new BMW Supra... Wait, I meant to say Toyota! Check out our video review below!

Since the end of the fourth-generation Supra in 2002, fans have been begging for a return of the Supra. While in between, we were given a severely insufficient Toyota 86 to hold our tongues; finally, the Supra has made its return. An exoskeleton of the BMW Z4, Toyota has built upon that along with a little Toyota flare to become the by-product of the next great sports car.

Underneath, the Supra shares a platform, running gear, engine, gearbox, and large chunks of the interior with the latest Z4. Not being the first example of Toyota partnering with others to collaborate on a version with a Toyota badge. (Subaru BRZ/Scion FRS/Toyota 86).

But this partnership is different because the Supra is a huge deal. It’s not a run of the mill newly introduced small coupe. The Supra badge has a history as a staple in Japanese car culture alongside the greats like the Honda NSX, Nissan Skyline, and Nissan GT-R.

While the DNA is the same, The Supra, in my opinion, is better looking than the Z4, no doubt about it. It’s well proportioned, striking, and eye-catching throughout.

Under the hood sits BMW’s B58 single turbo 3.0-liter straight six, developing identical power figures (335bhp and 369lb ft of torque) to the Z4 M40i. This is sent to the rear wheels via an eight-speed automatic transmission. 0-100km takes 4.3 seconds. The body is more rigid than the Lexus LFA’s, weight distribution is 50:50. Leaving aside the BMW controversy, you’ve got to admit it looks good on paper.

It’s excellent to drive. The Supra is crisp, responsive, well connected, confidence-inspiring, and quick. The fact that Toyota has been able to take the same mechanicals as BMW and shape them into a proper sports car that’s perhaps the most impressive aspect of the Supra. But it is not all entirely successful, so let’s start there. The paddle downshifts can be a fraction delayed and upshifts can surge on you.

Similarly, the engine has plenty of mid-range shove, but at higher RPM’s there’s not much point. The brakes do fade, but it does have bigger brakes, using 13.7-inch vented discs in front and 13.6-inch vented discs in the rear, 1.0 inch and 0.8 inches larger than the old car (which also had vented discs). But it’s the good stuff that dominates the experience. The front wheels unfailingly go where you aim them, and the rear axle is communicative and well supported. What this means is that the Supra moves into corners well, and it gets out of them well, too. The steering set-up – especially in Sport (that or Normal are your only choices) – is lovely, well-weighted, and responsive. It’s too light in Normal. Turning is decisive, and it feels agile, thanks to its short 2,470mm wheelbase.

Here is the thing; we can forgive the non-Toyota engine, but it’s hard to forgive the lack of innovation in the cabin. The Supra is a BMW inside. Of course, this means it’s got the material quality and tactility it wouldn’t have had otherwise, and some people will see that as a plus. And once again, if you aren’t familiar with BMW, it’s not going to offend you. But here’s Toyota, the world’s largest car company, having slapped a body on top of a BMW, It’s just an odd thing to do with a brand with such history for Toyota.

The rev counter is Toyota’s own, but the steering wheel definitely isn’t. The same goes for the heating controls, graphics, USB slots, switchgear, door handles, etc. Ignoring the BMW influences then: the driving position is excellent. You sit low, the standard seats wrap around your back as bucket seats do, however over the shoulder visibility is horrible. Two seats and two people have adequate space inside. The infotainment is intuitive as BMW’s go. No complaints as the rotary are easy to manage and operate.

After all is said and done, it’s like BMW built a better Toyota. It’s impossible to separate the new Supra from its underpinnings – not least because they are always staring you in the face when you get in. But in the end, Toyota has built a very talented driver’s car. It’s a very complete coupe. Big enough inside, well equipped, handsome, rapid, and good-natured. It’s grown-up yet compact, agile, and smooth. It’s a smart piece of engineering. A car you’d enjoy driving anywhere, a car that probably strikes the best compromise of GT and sportiness of any car in its class. 

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2019-Mercedes-Benz-CLS-53-AMG-Cover

2019 Mercedes-Benz CLS 53 AMG – Automotive Video Review

2019-Mercedes-Benz-CLS-53-AMG-Cover

2019 Mercedes-Benz CLS 53 AMG – Automotive Video Review

"With the new 53-series models we are extending our portfolio in a first step towards a hybridized future with a leading-edge combination of sporty design, performance and efficiency… “ - Tobias Moers

The most impressive innovation found in the 2019 Mercedes-Benz CLS 53 AMG is the new, electrified 3.0-litre engine that offers twin-turbocharging by way of a traditional exhaust gas turbocharger and the new electric auxiliary compressor. This provide almost instantaneous boost, as when the CLS 53 is starting at zero, the electric auxiliary compressor can immediately build up a high-pressure charge, delivering a faster increase in torque for acceleration until the large conventional exhaust gas turbocharger is deployed. As a result, the CLS 53 is able to zip around, with a glorious turbo lag-free response. It is as if this car gets all the benefits of both a supercharger and a turbo for all our lead foot needs. The new 3.0 L. engine provides the CLS 53 with 429 hp and a maximum torque of 384 lb-ft. The electrified EQ Boost starter-alternator briefly provides an additional 21 hp, plus 184 lb-ft of torque while still feeding the new 48 V on-board electrical system. This impressive new system clearly works as the CLS 53 4MATIC+ rockets from zero to 100 km/h in just 4.5 seconds.

The newly available 48 V on-board electrical system is also available to provide the CLS 53 with more robust traditional functions like; shifting, gliding and restarting of the engine by the start/stop function.

The new Mercedes CLS 53 features the twin-blade, silver chrome radiator grille, previously reserved for the V8 Performance models. As standard, the CLS 53 comes with 19-inch light-alloy wheels with optional 20-inch wheels available to add another layer of opulence if you so wish

The optional ENERGIZING comfort control is another interesting highlight on this vehicle. It links together the numerous comfort systems in the vehicle and harmonizes their specific functions such as; air conditioning and seating heating, cooling, and massaging, steering wheel heating, lighting and audio. Depending on your selection it generates a unique environment that Mercedes claims can enhance well-being and the drivers experience.

Finally, the CLS 53 4MATIC+ features the latest generation driving assistance systems pioneered in S-Class. Standard features are Active Braking Assist, Lane Keeping Assist, and ATTENTION ASSIST. Other standard features include PRE-SAFE®, the occupant-protection system, and the new PRE-SAFE® Sound, which prepares your hearing for any accident noise when the car believes there is a risk of a collision.

Key Features:

  • MSRP $92,000
  • 3.0-litre 6-cylinder in-line engine
  • 429 hp at 6100 rpm with and additional 21 hp of boost
  • 384 lb-ft at 1800-5800 rpm with an additional 184 lb-ft available
  • AMG SPEEDSHIFT TCT 9G transmission
  • Acceleration 0-100 km/h 4.5 s
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2019-Mercedes-Benz-A-220-Cover

2019 Mercedes-Benz A220 – Automotive Review

2019-Mercedes-Benz-A-220-Cover

2019 Mercedes-Benz A220 – Automotive Review

Mercedes-Benz redefines modern luxury requirements for the compact class, with the new for 2019 A Class Sedan & Hatchback

Excerpt/Headline

With this entry-level luxury sedan set to entice buyers into the brand at an affordable price, offering a complete blend of luxury design and features bundled up in a financially respectable package. Well, the 2019 Mercedes-Benz A 220 does just that. While the Mercedes originally released the CLA to fulfill this space; At the released price, the elements of quality and lack of spaciousness in the rear seats didn’t have buyers sticking around. Well the A-class now acts as the most economical segway into a Mercedes-Benz brand with many of the expected luxuries found in their higher-end models

Interior

Inside the A 220, your immediate drawn is towards the dash. The silver coating throughout and use of layering are smart in making the infotainment screen look extravagant and expensive.  Previously in the CLA models, the screen looked almost like it was tacked-on as an afterthought. Where-as the A 220 with the $3000 premium package and its dual 10.25” screens look almost as if it’s “floating” on the dashboard. This digital screen combo creates the feeling of it being one elongated piece extenuating that high-end design feel. Other available options like $1990 for leather seats and $1500 for a HUD can quickly elevate this car, but also as quickly take it out of the entry category. Our A 220 featured a white and black piano-style seating, which looked slick but, I can only imagine how fast the white color will fall victim to stains. The 2729 mm wheelbase and 1443 mm height provide enough comfort and space for a car full of people. Also, a point to note, the A 220 sedan has 420 L of truck capacity, compared to the hatchback A 250 with 370 L.

Styling

For an extra $310 “wow factor,” the Mercedes-Benz A 220 can be equipped with a 64-color ambient lighting system, including illuminating the, air vents, headrests, and door trim. We spent hours setting different color schemes and displays for our drive moods. This was mainly for the show-off factor to passengers and friends, which is, of course, part of the Mercedes experience, correct? It’s one of the more unique and exciting features that we have seen in most modern vehicles, including some higher-end models. The Meridian or available $700 Burmester audio system, in combination with the unique display, only electrifies that ambiance.

Driving

Now under the hood is a different story. There happens to be enough pace with the seven-speed dual-clutch transmission routing the 188 horsepower; however, the acceleration isn’t overly impressive. The A 220 4Matic hits it’s 0-100Km in 6.5 seconds. With the price jumping when you include the necessary options, it just gets to be overpriced for a 2.0-liter, 4-cylinder, in my personal opinion. At that point, I’d start to look at the cheaper Audi A3 or the Acura ILX. The A 220 shifts smoothly at hard acceleration thanks to the dual-clutch transmission, but at lower speeds, it felt somewhat clunky when downshifting to lower gears. However, the overall drivability is adequate. Featuring 3 drive modes, ideally, the A 220 should be left into comfort. The best blend of shift performance and throttle control. Eco-mode feels completely gutless and strictly feels like you should limit yourself to the slow lane. Sport mode will provide later shifting, and higher RPM’s in between gears, providing a more attractive engine fluttering

While this is an excellent segment from Mercedes-Benz into affordable luxury sedans. The A 220 goes from affordable to “why didn’t you just get a C-Class?” in a matter of just a couple options.

Comparisons

  • 2019 Audi A3 Sedan – $34,500
    • 0L with 184hp, and 221 lb-ft torque
    • 0-60 mph in 6.6 sec
  • 2019 BMW 2 Series – $39,950
    • 0L with 248 hp and 258 lb-ft
    • 0-100 km/hr 5.8 sec
  • 2019 Cadillac ATS – $39,990
    • 0L with 272 hp and 295 lb-ft

Key Features:

  • 4.0L with 188 hp at 5,800 RPM and 221 lb-ft torque at 1600 RPM
  • 0-100 km/hr in 7.2 seconds
  • 7G-DCT Dual Clutch Automatic Transmission
  • Front Wheel Drive
  • 420 L Luggage capacity
  • 17” 10-Spoke Wheels
  • Digital Instrument Cluster with 7.0″ Display and 7″ MBUX Media Touchscreen Display
    • Available as 10.25”
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2020 Mercedes-Benz E 450 - Sedan Cover

2020 Mercedes-Benz E 450 – Automotive Review

2020 Mercedes-Benz E 450 - Sedan Cover

2020 Mercedes-Benz E 450 – Automotive Review

With over 14 million cars sold globally since 1946, the E-Class represents the best-selling model series in the history of Mercedes-Benz.

Overview/Summary

The Mercedes E-Class is available in Coupe, Sedan, Convertible, and Wagon… you want it; they got it! While this car does sit on the higher end of the price tag with a starting MSRP of $72,300 CND if you are in the market for a high-end luxury sedan, the E 450 is certainly worth checking out.

(+) – When one wants comfort, style, speed and luxury the E 450 Sedan easily fits the bill

(-) – Jack of all trades often means the master of none

Highlights

Only slight modifications from the last years refresh. Maintaining the 2019 name change from the E 400 sedan to the E 450, accounting for the larger V6

Comparisons

  1. 2020 BMW 540i xDrive Sedan – $74,499.26 CND
    1. 335 hp
    2. 9.5 l/100 km.
    3. 4.7 s 0-100km/hr
  2. 2020 A6 Sedan – 55 TFSI Quattro Technik S Tronic – $ 76,750.00 CND
    1. 335 hp
    2. 9.7 l/100 km.
    3. 5.2 s 0-100km/hr
  3. 2020 Genesis – G80 3.3T SPORT AWD – $62,000 CND
    1. 365 hp
    2. 11.9 l/100 km.

Options

  1. Technology Package ($2700) – HUD, 360 Camera, Active LED system
  2. Premium Package ($5000) – Panoramic Sunroof, Burmester Surround Sound system, 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster, Added Comforts and Conveniences
  3. Comfort Package ($3900) – Climate Comfort/Drive-Dynamic multi-contour front seats, ENERGIZING Comfort, Air Balance cabin air purification and fragrance system

Driving

The 3.0L V6 Biturbo engine generates 362 hp and 369 lb-ft of torque, which in the larger E 450 sedan allows you to still feel the acceleration when hammering it to pass someone on the freeway. The drive feel on this car is exceptional with minimal negative feedback like noise, bumps, and over/understeer, providing you the ability to entirely focus on the pleasures of driving a luxury automobile. For example, technologies like the Electromechanical Direct-steer feature automatically varies the ratio based on how aggressive you are on the wheel, providing tight, responsive feedback at higher speeds and minimal effort in low-speed activities like parking.

Styling

The Mercedes E-Class Sedan features the standard wide grille with the iconic logo front and centre. While style is always something of a personal taste, I like the direction Mercedes has taken in recent years. Even without the dinner plate-sized logos manufacturers are using these days, the car looks like a Mercedes from every angle. Even better is the changes to the grille in the Luxury Package, as remove the logo cleaning up the lines, and add the famous Three-Pointed Star on the crown of the hood, where it rightfully belongs

Tech & Safety

As expected at this price point, the Mercedes E 450 comes loaded with options and tech features. Starting front and centre with a standard 12.3-inch central display, and an available second 12.3-inch screen as a customizable instrument cluster. The available Head-Up Display projects a 21x7cm full-colour graphical display showing information like navigation, driving speed, cruise-control settings, and more. Upgrade to the Burmester® 3D system for a 1,450-watt amp powering 23 speakers, including a trunk-mounted subwoofer with its own 400-watt amp. The E 450 is fully equipped with a slew of safety technology and features noteworthy available options like Route-based Speed Adaptation. This feature automatically adjusts the car’s speed in anticipation of curves, traffic circles, and highway interchanges, then resume up to the posted speed limit afterward.

Key Features

  • Starting at $72,300 CND
  • 3.0L V6 Biturbo with 9-speed 9G-TRONIC automatic transmission
    • 362 hp and 369 lb-ft torque
    • TBD l/100 km.
    • 5.0 s 0-100km/hr
  • 4MATIC all-wheel drive
  • 5 Passenger capacity
  • 530 L Cargo capacity
  • 3-inch high-resolution central display
    • Apple CarPlay / Andriod Auto
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Automotive Reviews Car
2020 Toyota Corolla - Cover

2020 Toyota Corolla – Automotive Review

2020 Toyota Corolla - Cover

2020 Toyota Corolla – Automotive Review

Regarded as the best selling car of all time, the 2020 Toyota Corolla gets its most dramatic transformation in recent years.

The Toyota Corolla has always been an easy choice for compact vehicles. It’s the highest selling vehicle of all-time. The reliability, affordability, and efficiency easily have people knowing what they are investing in when purchasing a Corolla. This new 2020 segment has left nothing to suggest that will ever change; even after undergoing the most dramatic transformation in recent memory.

The transformation began with a bit of cosmetic work to the shape and under belly of the new Corolla. New underpinnings to the body as part of Toyota’s New Global Architecture (TNGA) helps deliver that smooth drivability. Notably the new 2020 Corolla will offer a new engine option and Hybrid-engine capability. This giving users the optimum fuel efficiency whilst reducing carbon emissions. Ever evolving the Corolla will always deliver to get you from place to place, efficiently and reliably.

The exterior as I mentioned got the sharp feature treatment as opposed to last year. The outside features provide a competitive design finally that seemed to be lacking within the Corollas of years past. Boasted as longer, lower, and wider; the Corolla measures out to be 182.3 inches which is in fact .7 inches shorter then it’s predecessor. The width is increased by .2 inches to 70.1, and lower stance by more than an inch and a half. The Nightshade Edition has that marvel villain name to go along with its dark side. Flairs of black features include 18” black alloy wheels, mirror caps, door handles, front and rear spoilers, skirt, and badging. Complete with availability as a sedan or hatchback to fit your need, the Corolla has more glamour than ever before.

The interior remains rather unchanged from the previous year. Inside, the Corolla hatchback and sedan share a streamlined dashboard and soft-touch materials. Every model has passive entry and push-button start, but certain Corollas can be upgraded with ambient interior lighting, dual-zone climate control, and heated front seats. Those who regularly have back-seat passengers should consider the sedan over the hatchback since it has considerably more legroom behind the front seats.

Every Corolla has a touchscreen infotainment system with a mobile hotspot, Apple CarPlay capability however Android Auto is shockingly absent. The rather large 7-inch touchscreen dominates the dashboard, but its numerous buttons, rotary volume, and tuning knobs help keep the driver’s eyes on the road during use. Top options include wireless charging and an upgraded JBL audio system.

 

Prices starting at

  • L sedan: $18 990
  • LE sedan: $21 790
  • SE: $22 290
  • Hybrid: $24 790
  • XLE sedan: $26 990
  • XSE sedan/hatchback: $28 490

 

With a plethora of selection, each model has noteworthy safety features and options to suit your needs best. Leaving the choice for the best suited Corolla totally up to your own presences. While the hatchback has tighter rear capacity and less cargo space; the hatchback look feels sportier and drives as such. The luxury XSE has all the glitz and glamor but, with the extra cost. The phenomenal fuel efficiency of the Hybrid LE sedan is tough to ignore as well.

Besides the sportier options like the SE and XSE, the 2020 Corolla is equipped with a 139-horsepower 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine. Front wheel drive power is delivered through the continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) which provides smooth operation. However, with any sudden pressure to the gas pedal you will find the Corolla bellowing a loud hum throughout the cabin. The for-mentioned sport options boast a 169-horsepower 2-liter four-cylinder to pair with the CVT or optional six-speed manual. While the hatchbacks do have the larger engine, the hybrid powertrain is strictly limited to the sedan. Which ever your mood and style, Toyota has it covered with its multiple models, personally my eyes are drawn to the hatchback XSE.

Fuel efficiency in the 2020 Toyota Corolla is varied throughout the engine selections. The Hybrid will net you a combined 4.5L/100km. The L and LE model will give you about 7.1L/100km, XLE sitting around 7.3L/100km, SE being a little less at 6.7L/100km, and the XSE possessing 7L/100km.

Safety features included in the Toyota Corolla continues to be its namesake. For years the Corolla has been synonymous for reliability and safety. The 2020 Corolla sedan has earned a five-star crash-test rating. Driver-assistance features include pre-collision pedestrian detection, forward collision warning, automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, lane tracing assist, automatic high beams, and traffic sign recognition.

The all-new 2020 ToyotaCorolla attempts to enhance its reputation with flashier styling inside and out, more desirable features, and an improved driving experience. While it’s left to the eyes of the beholder; Toyota – more specifically the Corolla will continue to always see success amongst those who simply want a safe, well equipped and competitively priced car; one with a name synonymous with reliability.

 

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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 Nissan Qashqai - Cover

2019 Nissan Qashqai – Automotive Review

2019 Nissan Qashqai - Cover

2019 Nissan Qashqai – Automotive Review

The Nissan Qashqai is Nissan's 2nd most popular model, behind the better-in-every-way Rogue.

With virtually identical safety features, front ends, and interiors, it would almost make more sense to go with the Rogue for the more appealing style, space, and engine. Pricing isn’t very far off from the two also. So, why did Nissan green light the mass production of a car that is virtually identical to a vehicle they’ve already perfected? An even better question is: Why are people buying it?


Coming in at a whole foot and an inch shorter than the Rogue, the Qashqai will fit five average-sized people very comfortably. The styling is best described as a “Toned down version of the Rogue.” How many times will I mention the Rogue in this article? Keep reading to find out. The front and rear end are very alike. The side profile is when you see the subtle difference in the shapes. The Qashqai takes a sloping roof design and the hood is noticeably shorter.

The Nissan Safety Shield 360 and the ProPILOT Assist keep you in your lane and away from the careless drivers out there. The Safety Shield 360 includes the Emergency Braking with Pedestrian Detection, Rear Intelligent Emergency Braking, Lane Departure Warning, Blind Spot Warning, Rear Cross Traffic Alert and High Beam Assist. On the inside, dead center between your RPMs and your speed, all of these safety features are displayed for your viewing pleasure (and safety of course). The 7.0” touch screen infotainment system is smooth and intuitive, and the nine-speaker Bose sound system is impressive. The Around View Cameras are displayed on this 7.0” screen but the resolution is a tad suspect. This isn’t just a Nissan issue, but a large group of cars and manufacturers in 2019 still have low-resolution cameras as back-up and around view cameras and its quite annoying. The dash and interior are identical to the Rogue with the glossy black accents and a nice, soft, and sporty designed steering wheel. And, the seats are comfortable as all get out. The leather is soft and whatever is under it is even softer.


The Qashqai runs a 2.0L 4-cylinder, 141hp engine. 4-wheel Independent strut suspension is the culprit of the smooth ride and somewhat “darty” steering. The CVTC (Continuously Variable Timing Control) is rough. It works the way it should, but the drone of any CVT is something I don’t think I will get used to. Just like every other CVT, when slowly letting off the gas, the weird surge of power shows up. It sure is fuel efficient though, with fuel economy ratings estimated at 8.1 L/100 km highway and 10.0 L/100 km city. Better than the already very fuel-efficient Rogue. The Qashqai comes in an Xtronic Transmission or a six-speed manual in the FWD models. It’s a competent car for the weekend go-getters.

The Nissan Rogue and the Nissan Qashqai (Rogue Sport in the US) have many similarities. In every aspect of the car, you can find a handful and more similarities, but the Qashqai has its own personality. It seems to stray away from the “perfect family” vehicle and cruise in the lane of “adventure seeker.” It has more space in all the right places to hold your weekend activities, but it also brings you the convenience and modern styling of any new car on the market, all while not breaking the bank. It comes in 3 trims and there are plenty of balloon-like colors to choose from

Key Features:

  • 2.0L 4-cylinder
    • Horsepower 141 @ 6,000 rpm
    • Torque (lb-ft) 147 @ 4,400 rpm
  • Fuel Economy
    • Xtronic AWD City/highway/combined 9.1/7.6/8.4 L/100km
    • Xtronic FWD City/highway/combined 8.6/7.2/8.0 L/100km
    • 6 MT FWD City/highway/combined 10.1/8.1/9.2 L/100km
  • Available AWD
  • 5 passenger
    • Cargo w/2nd row seat folded down (S 61.1) (SV/SL 53.3) cubic feet
    • Cargo w/2nd row seat upright (S 22.9) (SV/SL 20) cubic feet
  • 7″ multi touch NissanConnect® featuring Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™
    • Optional Bose® Audio System with 9 speaker
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2019 Honda Passport - Cover

2019 Honda Passport – Automotive Review

2019 Honda Passport - Cover

2019 Honda Passport – Automotive Review

Equipped with traveling appendages, I decided to put the Passport to the ultimate test. However, to really test this Passports limits, I figured I would get three friends to accompany me. Four grown size adults on a four-day road trip, let’s see how this goes.

Oddly enough, with a companion having an expired passport, our journey was going to be limited. We decided to head to the interior of beautiful British Columbia, with our stops being Logan Lake, Kamloops, Falkland, and Shuswap Lake as our final destination.

Not to be confused with the Honda Pilot, the Passport sits in that sweet spot between the sub-compact CRV and the Pilot. However inside you would never notice. It’s incredibly spacious; however, there is a big difference, not having that third row of seating.

Scrambling to pack my gear and items, I managed to include everything you can imagine to the very last tee. I brought games, I brought bug spray, and I even brought a roll of duct tape because- you just never know.

This Honda Passport Touring featured a Thule(R) ski-rack for extra storage capacity. While the trunk measured at 1,430 (L) cargo volume; this was more than efficient for our gear, the extra storage made it even more comfortable. We were able to utilize the over 1500 millimeter shoulder room in the rear seats and 1000 millimeter headroom in the front. With seating capacity at five grown adults, the comfortability was entirely optimal.

While we had a three-hour journey ahead of us before our first stop, equipped inside the Honda Passport Touring edition was WiFi capability thanks to HondaLink. Having WiFi is an excellent feature, especially on road trips.

Once we arrived at Logan Lake, we decide to go slightly off the beaten path. Taking a minor detour onto a dirt path demonstrated that the Passport handles it with ease. The tight wheel to body clearance navigates the rocks and body sway particularly well. The overall ride comfort is one of the best in the Honda Lineup. However taking the Passport on any more than dirt mixed with a couple rocks and you might be in for a rough ride due to the low clearance and sway. With a firm suspension I was pleasantly surprised by the control throughout nevertheless.

After spending the night lakeside, we quickly made our way toward Kamloops. Powering the drivetrain is a 3.5-litre V6 engine. The acceleration is smooth and quick. The Passport registers a 0-100 at 6.8 seconds. Accompanied with a nine-speed transmission the shifting is fast and seamless. There are also steering wheel paddles to offer that manual shift feel. With the 280 horsepower we made excellent time on our journey- not to insinuate that I was speeding. Once our brief stop at Kamloops was complete, we were off towards the small town of Falkland. Driving aids like the blind spot detection and lane-keeping assist were quite the assets on our trek. The multiple drivability technology was important when driving through some fog on the highways were visibility is limited. The adaptive cruise control worked well on lengthy straightaways in combination with blind-spot detection in limited visibility weather.

In Falkland, we optimized our fishing reels and only managed to catch a cold. Wasting 7 hours of casting and reeling, the scenery of the mountains was a nice consultation. We needed to fuel up for our second time here, which I must say wasn’t the most impressive fuel efficiency. At 11L/100km the Honda Passport is deemed average in comparison to its mid-size crossover competitors. At long last we reached our final destination of Shuswap.

While in Shuswap, we got to utilize the boat that we had been towing throughout the trip. Oh, did I not mention that we were pulling a small boat and trailer? Yes, that’s because with the towing rating at 5,000lbs our boat was weightless enough I barely would notice it.

We had a great trip, and we recommend the Honda Passport for those looking for that middle ground of size, comfortability, and utility. Equipped with a plethora of features and extras, the Passport is suitable for any family getaway. 

Key Features:

  • V6 24-Valve SOHC i-VTEC®
    • 280 hp @ 6000 rpm and 262 lb-ft torque @ 4700 rpm
    • City 12.5 L/100KM
    • Highway 9.85 L/100KM
  • Available Intelligent Variable Torque Management™ (i-VTM4®) AWD System
  • Ground Clearance (2WD/AWD,) 7.5 in / 8.1 in
  • Towing Capacity (2WD/AWD) 3500 lbs / 5000lbs
  • Seating Capacity 5
    • Headroom (front/rear) 40.1 in / 40.1 in
    • Legroom (front/rear) 40.9 in / 39.6 in
  • Cargo Volume
    • behind 2nd-row 41.2 cu ft
    • behind 1st-row 77.9 cu ft
  • Apple CarPlay™/ Android Auto™
  • Available AT&T Wi-Fi hotspot
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