The SsangYong SUV brand from Korea has, for many years, been the proud recipient of the "Worst looking designs in the world" award.
They do, somehow, actually sell some SUVs in Europe. But thank God, these things never landed in the US.
Have a look at their latest creation.
There is just nothing to say.
It is just "Chinese design" bad. And that interior....
In 2017, it all seems like a bad joke.
As an added bonus to the joke, this one above is the current model!
And yes. Looking 100 times better. Not great, but much better.
This is interesting since there are rumors it could be a concept of the next Fj Cruiser.
I am not a truck person, but I've always liked the FJ-Cruiser. Maybe just because of its retro/almost cartoony design.
Plus I have a couple of friends who own them and love them.
For a while, sales weren't strong enough for Toyota. The future looked pretty bleak for the FJ and an eventual replacement. (The FJ "died" in 2014)
But these days, anything that says "truck" sells.
So it makes sense to bring it back from the dead.
Let's just hope it looks as much fun as the first one.
-All you see is the Chrysler 200. Which is already dead.
They stopped building it a while ago. But it's still there...
They still managed to sell 57 294 of them last year.
And 178 000 the year before! (That's what some advertising money does...)
No bad at all. Then, Marchionne announced he hated the car and was
-The Chrysler 300 sedan. The current generation came out in 2011.
So it's already 6 years old. Most of the competition has been redesigned.
From what Chrysler is saying, a new one (If that ever happens) is still a couple of years away.
They sold about 53 000 of them last year. (Which isn't bad l for that segment)
-The pacifica Minivan. Gas and Hybrid versions.
The one bright spot. Showing Chrysler can still compete in one segment.
So they basically have only 2 models.
I don't really know any other main stream brand with only 2 models for sale currently.
What is going on???
I thought the original idea of blending Chrysler for the US market and Lancia for Europe was pretty good.
But no. That idea got killed.
Just like any new product. (Except the minivan)
What do you think?
Have you heard of any new product for Chrysler???
Maybe Peugeot should buy it and sell us Opels and Peugeots under the Chrysler name?
I did drive one about 3 years ago. So I'll see what's new.
Besides the obvious: new front end design.
My model is a pretty loaded SL model. With the popular 2.5 Liter engine.
Of course, this post and the actual review will drive the Nissan fan boys crazy (Or is it just one lonely guy...)
So expect reading a lot of comments explaining how Nissan is the "best car ever".
"the competition cannot catch up", "Nissan is Got", "Nissan rules" etc...
Get ready for the Nissan nuts to come out.
(maybe the super lonely "Toyota hater" guy could chime in as well...)
The current GTI came out in Europe since late 2012. (Later in the US)
So the design is very familiar.
Basically still an evolution, after all these years, of the original 1970's Guigiaro Golf design.
It still looks very nice after 5 years.
(the model I tested was a 2017 model, not the revised one for 2018)
Compared to Asian hatchbacks we mostly get here in the US, it still has a refreshing simple look and personality.
Same thing inside. It is quite roomy everywhere.
Everything is super solid and well put together. (The doors feel amazingly solid)
And everything looks and feels like a high end car. This is really as nice (or nicer) as an Audi.
The model I had was a loaded SE. So it came with pretty much everything.
Including the always great Fender stereo.
Now with Apple CarPlay . Which works great.
The best part of the hatch is this.
A super roomy small car that can fit tons of stuff inside. Without getting an SUV.
I was still surprised by a few things missing. This SE being the loaded model.
Like the rear view mirror. With its old fashion manual switch.
Or the "power seat". Which still requires mostly manual adjustments.
Come on.... In 2017, a power seat should not have any manual adjustment at all in a $33 000 car...
I tried the custom drive settings.
I left the steering in the "sport" position. The "normal" setting is too light for a sporty car.
I think the Sport should be the setting in Normal. Sport should be even sportier.
Otherwise there isn't that much of a difference in other settings.
Especially "engine sound". Where I really couldn't tell any difference.
The storage space under the center armrest is, let's say, limited.
The drive is, very sporty.
Which totally fits the GTI personality. I mean, it's how it should be.
Like I mentioned earlier, I wish the steering had a bit more weight to it.
But it does feel great.
The suspension is very firm, which is fine.
The 2.0 Liter is still not as smooth or refined as most others.
It still feels like a quiet diesel at idle. Most of the time.
Otherwise, it is super punshy. You really have to watch it past 2500 RPM. There is just a huge rush of power.
Which is just great fun. But that fun is actually quite limited in real life.
I mean besides freeway onramps, where could you actually drive like this on a regular basis?
Gas mileage is rated at 24City and 32HWY.
I got about 22 in the City. And had no problem getting 35HWY.
I still don't like the DSG transmission.
It has gotten better. (It doesn't feel like the car is stalling when stopping, anymore)
But in D mode it isn't very willing to downshift.
The best way to use it is the "fake manual" mode. Where you up or down shift yourself.
It works much better this way. With a super quick response.
But the way to go in the GTI would be to get the proper manual.
The worst part of the DSG is still when trying to park uphill. In reverse, sometimes, the car just refuses to move. It raves up, but doesn't move. Like if in neutral. Then it does.
It happened more than once and it really disturbing.
In normal D mode, there is a general lag in acceleration. Which gets a bit better when shifting manually.
And is probably much easier to control with a proper manual.
Brakes are very strong. But can be pretty abrupt.
It takes a while to figure out how to stop smoothly.
The GTI is still one of the most fun you could have driving.
Sure, it's a bit quirky. Which is actually fine.
It all comes out as "personality".
It is wonderful in the city, but also a great highway driver. With tons of room.
For my taste, I would rather have the 6 speed manual.
And also the cool plaid seats from the base model.
(But. I don't think the Fender stereo is even an option on the base car....)
Here is the details of the car I was driving for a week.
Elon Musk tweeted an all new, very short, video of a "final" version of a Tesla Model 3 prototype testing.
So, pretty much, what you see is what you'll get.
There doesn't seem to be many changes to the early versions we saw last year.
The front end has not been redesigned, or so it seems.
Musk mentioned the trunk opening was being redone. It's hard to tell from this video.
He also said the interior were a work in progress.
From the picture above, (and the video), it looks the same.
Here is the early prototype interior. Which, we were told, was not final.