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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

rover
audi
audi q5
bmw
volvo xc60
First Test: 2012 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque
The rugged Welsh island of Anglesey frequently is wet, cold, and windy; a place where sideways rain can hit you like a spray of icy tacks. It's also a place whose rocky, hilly terrain could keep a mountain goat happy for eons. So when it came time to introduce the all-new Range Rover Evoque -- a vehicle projected to be Land Rover's best-seller -- the folks from Gaydon figured where better than...wet, cold, windy, rocky, hilly, and mountain goat-friendly Anglesey.

 When I first learned I'd be driving the Evoque and did my initial research -- perusing specs of the 240-horsepower, 28-mpg-highway, 2.0-liter engine, reading up on the Haldex IV all-wheel-drive system, and looking at photos of the...

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6 Years ago
News

mitsubishi
mitsubishi outlander
ford
rover
seat
Verdict: 2010 Mitsubishi Outlander GT
With most cars that come into our fleet, several features receive attention. With others, one particular element becomes the focus of just about everyone on staff. The Mitsubishi Outlander GT falls firmly into the latter category, with most of our year's worth of notes on the crossover focused on the shortcomings of the Rockford Fosgate-sourced infotainment system. A sampling:

"The Outlander's iPod integration leaves much to be desired."

"iPod integration is shameful. USB connection is erratic and unreliable."

"No rotary knobs at all. Does Mitsu really expect the user to push the Up/Down toggle, oh, 147 times to browse sat-radio channels?"

 "The dial works, everyone knows it, and because...

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6 Years ago
News

jeep
rover
toyota
toyota 4runner
Arrival: 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee
The 2011 Grand Cherokee is easily the most important vehicle Jeep has launched in the past few years in terms of finances and image. It had to not only be capable enough off-road to silence the purists who balked at its unibody construction and lack of solid axles, but also refined and luxurious enough to appeal to the broad range of demanding customers in its cutthroat midsize SUV segment. Given the shortage of angry Internet posts about its TrailRated badge and 68-percent year-on-year sales increase in 2010, Jeep seems to have hit the mark.

While we've had some experience with the latest and greatest Jeep-we gave it the trial-by-fire treatment against a Land Rover LR4 and a Toyota 4Runner...

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6 Years ago
News

rover
First Drive: 2012 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque
Land Rover's crystal-ball department reckons the global lux-ute market is going to expand by 35 percent over the next five years, and it wants a big bite of this widening slice of profit pie. How best to get it? Expand the Range Rover brand while shrinking its footprint, both physically and environmentally.

 This could have been accomplished lickety-split and on the Tata-Nano cheap by pounding the LR2's sheet metal into the shape of the similarly compact LRX concept vehicle, but that's evidently not how the new Indian parent company rolls (praise Vishnu!). No, the LRX is being developed into the Range Rover Evoque the hard way -- by reimagining every detail to perform in a way that befits...

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7 Years ago
News

cadillac
cadillac escalade
lincoln
chevrolet
chevrolet suburban
First Drive: 2011 Cadillac Escalade ESV Platinum AWD
"Stop living in the past," say countless advice purveyors across a broad spectrum of media. It's good advice if you're trying to get over an ex-girlfriend, but you pretty much have to live in the past to drop almost $90,000 on a body-on-frame luxury SUV like the 2011 Cadillac Escalade ESV Platinum. That's $88,295 to be precise, making this the second-most-expensive Caddy available. (First place by a slight margin goes to the Escalade Hybrid.)

The original GMT400 Escalade was a hastily created rebadge of the GMC Yukon, designed as an answer to the then-popular Lincoln Navigator. But it was the next-generation model, based on the GMT800 platform, that became the bling king, while the Lincoln...

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7 Years ago
News

rover
lamborghini
First Drive: Bowler Nemesis EXR
Porsche's Cayenne Turbo, BMW's X6M, and Mercedes' ML63 are a hit with buyers. They're big, comfortable, and most of all, fast. But they're in for a shock. There's a new kid in town, a true off-road super ute.

As I drift around a field for what feels like the 150th time, laughing like a maniac and plowing four huge ruts in the soil, it occurs to me that the Bowler Nemesis EXR might just be the most innovative supercar on the road. Or off it.

 Independent rally raider Drew Bowler's home-brewed creations were a constant thorn in the side of the works teams on the infamous Dakar Rally and other brutal long-distance rallies. Eventually fellow competitors asked him to build cars for them, and Bowler...

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7 Years ago
News

rover
seat
First Look: 2012 Range Rover Evoque
Range Rover has traditionally been the luxo SUV brand with the highest commitment to off-roadability. That makes the Evoque crossover-coupe all the more of a departure. Its design is definitely style first, utility second, and its dynamic emphasis leans very much towards on-road dynamics. That just shows how the world is changing. But the luxury angle is very much intact.

The Evoque will be a third model for Range Rover, fitting below the stately, eponymous RR and the Range Rover Sport. It goes on sale mid-2011 at prices running about $40-$50,000. A five-door with the same wedge silhouette will follow half a year after.

The Evoque is a dead ringer for the Land Rover LRX concept from the Detroit...

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7 Years ago
News

jeep
rover
mercedes benz m
toyota
toyota 4runner
Round One: 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee V-8 vs. 2010 Land Rover LR4
Going off-road is easier than ever. It used to be that you'd have to manually lock hubs and shift levers (only when stopped and the transmission in neutral), and the vehicles used for off-roading were crude, uncomfortable, and bare-bones. All that has changed. Now, you can ride in luxury on the trail and can proudly take the neighbors out to dinner that night in the same vehicle. Switching to trail mode is just as easy, thanks to electronics and the creation of Terrain Response (Land Rover) and similar systems -- turn the knob to choose the terrain you're driving over, and go -- that have come along since the old days.

There are now a few sport/utilities that use a version of this technology,...

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7 Years ago
News

jeep
rover
mercedes benz m
toyota
toyota 4runner
Round One: 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee V-8 vs. 2010 Land Rover LR4
Going off-road is easier than ever. It used to be that you'd have to manually lock hubs and shift levers (only when stopped and the transmission in neutral), and the vehicles used for off-roading were crude, uncomfortable, and bare-bones. All that has changed. Now, you can ride in luxury on the trail and can proudly take the neighbors out to dinner that night in the same vehicle. Switching to trail mode is just as easy, thanks to electronics and the creation of Terrain Response (Land Rover) and similar systems -- turn the knob to choose the terrain you're driving over, and go -- that have come along since the old days.

There are now a few sport/utilities that use a version of this technology,...

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