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6 Years ago
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nissan
seat
Long Term Update 2: 2011 Nissan Juke SV
"Fuel" and "economy" don't really mix when it comes to the Juke. Under numerous circumstances, with an equally diverse group of drivers behind its 370Z-esque wheel, the Juke's 1.6-liter "enjoys having a torrid love affair with fuel," as associate online editor, Benson Kong, best put it.

How passionate is said affair? Very. On one occasion, a staffer drove 176 miles on a single tank of its required premium brew. Granted, range, like average fuel economy, depends largely on driver inputs. But still, 176 miles? Some motorcycles can do that on one gallon. Bottom line, it takes a lot of work, plus a 15 mph tailwind, to attain the EPA-rated 25 city/30 highway mpg ratings. But it can be done.

Case-in-point:...

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6 Years ago
News

volkswagen
volkswagen jetta
seat
First Drive: 2012 Volkswagen Jetta GLI
In the first five generations it was pretty easy to comprehensively sum up the difference between a Golf and a Jetta: One had a trunk. The sixth-generation Jetta has established its own identity in the Volkswagen product line as a bigger, more mass-market-friendly car. Now, the differences between the two run much deeper. Mechanically and spiritually, the Jetta stands apart from its former fraternal twin the Golf. It makes sense the 2012 Jetta GLI would follow suit and differentiate itself from its Golf-based brethren, the GTI.

 Although the sixth-gen Jetta has seen record sales volumes since its introduction last year, longtime fans were let down by the newest offering. In an effort to compete...

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6 Years ago
News

mazda
seat
chevrolet
chevrolet equinox
ford
Quick Drive: 2013 Mazda CX-5 Prototype
REYKJAVIK, ICELAND -- "Skyactiv" finally makes sense. This October, an updated, 40-mpg (highway) Mazda3 with the brand's new gas direct-injection, 2.0-liter four, and six-speed manual or automatic gets the Skyactiv badge thanks to all those goodies. Afterwards, only Mazda's all-new models will wear the badge, which will be used in a manner similar to Mercedes-Benz's Bluetec and Toyota's Hybrid Synergy Drive. It's a green-branding ploy.

 Unlike either of those two automakers, Mazda is too small to get into hybrids or any type of advanced electric/battery powertrains. The strategy is to concentrate on what most experts say will continue to be the mainstream technology: highly evolved internal...

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6 Years ago
News

audi
audi s6
audi a6
bmw
bmw m5
First Look: 2012 Audi S6, S7, and S8
The outgoing S6 was powered by a naturally aspirated, 5.2-liter V-10 engine that produced 435 hp and 398 lb-ft of torque, and needed 5.1 seconds to go from 0-60 mph. The 2012 Audi S6's powertrain promises to be a big improvement. The new TSFI 4.0-liter V-8 found in the 2012 Audi S6 is rated at 420 hp and 406 lb-ft of torque. While it's slightly down in horsepower, the bump in torque and Audi's S Tronic seven-speed, dual-clutch transmission (six-speed Tiptronic in the outgoing model) help the new S6 achieve a 0-62 time of 4.8 seconds, which is more than likely a conservative number from Audi. So how does the 2012 S6 stack up against its German rivals? The 2012 Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG arrives in...

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6 Years ago
News

volvo
volvo s60
audi
audi s4
bmw
First Drive: 2012 Volvo S60 R-Design
We really like Volvo's new S60, one of the best cars to ever come from the folks in Gothenburg. It's certainly the best in recent memory. And for 2012, it got even better, thanks to the addition of the sporty Volvo S60 R-Design - the heir to the first-generation S60 R and the 850 R of the 1990s, not to mention the various sporty turbobricks of the '80s and early '90s.

 The first R-Design model was the C30 a couple of years ago, though the compact hatch received a purely cosmetic package. In contrast, the S60 gets performance enhancements as well. Output increases from the standard T-6 engine's 300 horses and 325 lb-ft to 325 horsepower and 354 pound-feet thanks to an increase in boost to 14.5...

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6 Years ago
News

ford
ford explorer
fiat
fiat 500
rover
First Test: 2012 Ford Explorer EcoBoost
Last time we had our hands on the new Ford Explorer, it finished sixth out of six in our seven-row SUV comparison test. Yes, friends, dead last. But that car was a preproduction vehicle, and quite literally fell apart on us. This time around, by dint of its new 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine, I think the Explorer would have placed lower. Like below a city bus. Yes, my kneecaps are thankful Harry Bennett is dead.

"It's just such inefficient packaging," crowed bossman Angus MacKenzie as we stood contemplating Ford's big-on-the-outside, cramped-on-the-inside kiddie hauler. What exactly is so wrong with it? "It's intellectually dishonest," continued Angus. "It looks roomy, but it's not. It looks sporty,...

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6 Years ago
News

chevrolet
chevrolet silverado
Long Term Update 3: 2011 Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD
Rule #1: If people discover that you have a truck, they will ask to use it.The Silverado HD has been put to work, serving as moving van for two different staffers. One trip included a large futon, which, much to one staffer's pleasant surprise, fit perfectly in the Chevy's bed with the tailgate closed. Another guy on the Motor Trend staff spent several days helping a friend move out of a house (that almost always means schlepping a lot of stuff). In addition, after a photo shoot for Motor Trend Classic, there were several bales of straw that we were done with, and needed to be donated to a local saddlery, feed store, or somewhere that carried products for horses. All the bales fit in the bed,...

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6 Years ago
News

saab
cadillac
cadillac srx
chevrolet
chevrolet malibu
First Test: 2011 Saab 9-4x
Motor Trend, or Motor Trend Classic? If Saab doesn't restart production in Trollhatten by the end of August, the print version of this story ought to be published in the latter. Although the 9-4x is the only Saab built outside of Sweden -- it's built in Ramos Arizpe, Mexico, alongside the Cadillac SRX -- its future depends on Saab's flagging fortunes.

 The Caddy version of this Epsilon II/Theta-based, transverse-engine, all-wheel-drive crossover has been on the market a year, enough time for GM to spend some cash on much-needed chassis upgrades and a new engine. For 2012, the SRX comes only with the 308-horsepower, 3.6-liter direct injection V-6, replacing the 3.0-liter. The underdeveloped,...

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6 Years ago
News

bentley
bentley continental
volkswagen
First Look: 2012 Bentley Continental GTC
We've already sampled the updated 2012 Bentley Continental GT back in April, and now it's time for the drop-top version, the GTC, to take a bow before its debut next month at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show. Like the coupe, the updates to the 2012 Continental GTC are evolutionary, with many of the differences hiding firmly in the details. The craftsmen (and women) from Crewe applied the same sort of small, careful updates to the convertible that they have for the coupe.

The big news for the convertible is in the open air interior. A new, sweeping dashboard and instrument panel help the GTC's cabin feel more spacious and luxurious. The interior is hand-crafted from the finest soft-touch leather...

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6 Years ago
News

toyota
toyota camry
seat
hyundai
hyundai sonata
First Drive: 2012 Toyota Camry
Is the 2012 Toyota Camry new and special enough to vanquish the Hyundai Sonata? Is the SE model a poor man's sport sedan? Is Toyota's rebound in J.D. Power & Associates' initial quality rankings, and the company's vindication over specious unintended acceleration claims, enough to warrant purchase consideration? Do you experience headaches, dizziness, or nausea when driven swiftly in a sports car?

 If you've answered, "Well, heck, yes!" to any of these questions, get ready for a quiz in which we determine whether you'd notice an all-new seventh-generation model if it used your driveway for a U-turn.

Here are some study materials: Camrys traditionally run two cycles on one platform, and...

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