Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Aston Martin Lagonda

This is quite amazing.
Although, unlike the Rapide sedan, it will only be produced in very limited numbers.

And unlike the Rapide, the back seats seem to have tons of legroom.
Quite an amazing car, and I'm sure, a great looking alternative to a Rolls or top of the line Bentley.

2015 Honda CR-V interior

What an improvement.
Not 100% new but it looks like they really listen.

And for the 1st time, it looks like that 80's "Honda beige" interior is gone!
Now you can get a proper tan/black combo.

With a new engine and a CVT, mileage is better too.
They did quite a  bit of work for just a "refresh". The CR-V has been the best selling SUV in the world last year. These changes should keep it on top of the sale chart.
No matter how many of us think it's boring.
It might be, but it's also what people want...

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Mystery car.

This was sent to me by a friend who lives in Germany.
The picture was taken in Stuttgart.

So it could be a Mercedes? Although it doesn't seem like one. Next GLK?

Looks more like a Land Rover product to me.

What is it???
What do you think???

2015 Honda CR-V

This picture was sent to me by a reader.
It is from the 2015 accessory catalog.
Looks like the new front end works better when the rest of the car is covered with tons of add ons.

I still think the interior is where improvements are really needed...

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Something you don't see every day...

I used to see tons of these.
The 2nd generation Toyota Celica. This one from 1978 or 79.

Just saw this in Hollywood earlier today. And it looked in great condition. Congrats to the owner!

Saturday, September 20, 2014

2015 Honda CR-V

The new one is on top.
It's not all new of course, just a refresh.

Not sure yet if I like this better or not. Seems like they added stuff to make it a bit more upscale, which usually ends up cheesier.

Engines should be the same. No news about the interior. Thats the part that really needs an improvement. Especially the horrible hard plastic/fake wood trims.

More very soon...

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

2015/2016 Ford C-Max

Just like the Focus, the C-Max gets a few revisions for the new year.
Which is 2015 in Europe, and could be for the 2016 model year in the US.

The front end looks a lot cleaner than before. It's actually quite an improvement, I think.

Inside things are a bit simpler too, less Klingon looking....

Here is the current one.

Monday, September 15, 2014

All new Fiat 500X

Here is the 1st picture of the real thing.

The small SUV/Crossover based on the 500L platform.

And it does look really good.
I think, unlike the weird looking 500L, this is the potential to be really big in the US.

More very soon...

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Tuesday, September 09, 2014

More pictures of the new Mazda Miata

Still in red. With black wheels.
(Which, in my opinion, make any car look quite vulgar.)

The interior seems fine. A bit more upscale than before. But nothing very stylish or inspired.

But I do like how sculpted the door panels are. This looks really cool...

All new BMW 2 series convertible

Replacing the previous 1 series convertible.

And looking about as good as the slightly roomier and bigger 4 series convertible.
So now you can get that great BMW image ("aggressive asshole driver and guy-who-parks-across-2-parking-spaces") for less money.

Since the current Z4 has jumped so high in price with the last redesign, this is now the cheapest BMW convertible.

I have seen a few of the 2 series coupe, and they do look quite nice.
About as nice as the 4 series. And they both have the same engines.

2016 Mercedes AMG GT

This is crazy good looking!

Sorry, but I actually don't care that much about the specs. (Since most buyers will never drive this as fast as it can go.)
But it does have a 4.0 Liter V8 Turbo with 456HP or 503HP for the "S" version.

Not sure about pricing either, yet.
But it was mentioned previously that it would be competing with the Porsche 911.
So that would put it at around $100 000, I would guess.

I can't wait to see one of these in the streets!

Subaru Viziv production version?

 It does look like a production version of the Viziv concept, doesn't it...

Except the new Subaru grille isn't really there. Which is kind of weird.
And the side mirrors are still pretty small for a production car.

So I'm not really sure this is real. I mean, it would be nice if Subaru actually had one interesting design in their line up.

This is the latest concept version. (They had another one before)
Where you see the new grille. Similar to the one in the new Legacy.
And the more angular look they are using now.
Something like this would be really nice.

The "patent drawing" on tope looks pretty soft...

Monday, September 08, 2014

More pix of the all new 2016 Jaguar XE

Still needs to see the regular version.
Red interior is just pretty horrible.

And it doesn't seem that upscale, at least on the pix. There is something cheap looking about the door trim...

And also. That great looking sunroof! It's actually useless for the driver and front passenger.
Look how far back it starts. Why?? Why?????

And now we know that it won't even come to the us before 2016!
Again, why????

2016 Jaguar XE

I hate to say, but after all this waiting, I'm a bit disappointed.
It just looks like a small XF. Something that could have been out 5 years ago...
(It even has a bit of Acura ILX feel in the middle pic)

But, I also realize these are pretty bad pictures.
I always think it's a mistake to release pictures of the "Sport version" first.
Which means, "no chrome and horrible interior color combo".

In this case, no chrome is really bad on a Jaguar. (You can see where the chrome part would get thicker around the rear door, giving the car a bit of personality)
As for the interior, even if I imagine it in black, or cream, it still looks fairly generic.
Plus, the design of the dash doesn't match the doors at all. It seems to be resting on the door trim,  in a weird way.

I guess this is a case of "wait and see".
As in "wait for better pix and better colors"....

Saturday, September 06, 2014

Car films: "Week end" 1967 by Jean-Luc Godard

OK, first. A warning. This is NOT a film for everyone. (Especially kids.)

But I am watching this for the 1st time, although I've heard about it for years.
I am usually not a fan of Godard films. But this is so great in some ways.

And many scenes are beautiful displays of 60's European cars.
Any car lovers would at least enjoy that part of this otherwise very strange film.
(It is after all pretty much communist and very much anti-American...)

There is a long scene of a traffic jam in a country road that has so many cool cars in it.

Well. I'm going back to it.
I'm watching it on Hulu (Criterion collection)

Just though I mentioned it....

Friday, September 05, 2014

Nissan Note Test Drive

 I did drive the Note before. But since Nissan sent me another one. I thought, why not?
See what I think of it now.

I still really like the design. Which I think is so much nicer looking than the new 2015 Honda Fit abomination.

With "real" alloy wheels, it would even be better. Much better.

 The interior is really roomy. And that's about all for the good news.
Otherwise, there is no soft plastic anywhere. Even on the door armrests.
The seating position is too high. Even in the lowest setting.

The stereo sounds pretty basic. (polite for "bad")

 The engine is surprisingly quiet and smooth. Pretty much at al time.
Which is really nice.
That is until you try to push it. Then it gets quite noisy. With no result.
As the combination of "CVT and no power" pretty much dictates how fast you are going.

This is one of the only cars where I actually floored the accelerator to merge on the freeway.
With little result.

The ride is much firmer than I remember. (Almost too hard at times.)
Mileage is supposed to be 31/40.
I was able to squeeze about 27 around town, trying very, very hard. There is no way anyone is ever getting 31MPG.
But I was able to get at least 42 on the freeway.

The morel I test last year had a much nicer light colored interior.
Black isn't helping and makes the whole thing look even cheaper.

My test car was a bit over $17 000. Which actually seems expensive to me.
This should be the base model. ( I still had a few options) A car like this shouldn't be more than $13 000.
It is just too bad. It wouldn't take much to make the Note a much nicer car.
With the Cube gone soon, this is their main small hatchback offering.
A better engine and nicer interior bits would go a long way.
(A nicer interior is available in Europe. Also a glass roof option)

In case you were wondering, this is the interior of the 2015 model. (Not sure why Nissan still had a 2014 car to send me...)
The only change I see is the top of the console.
Not sure if the plastics are better or not...

They also have a new SR model. SR sounds sporty doesn't it?
Well, it's not. It uses the same CVT/engine combo.

But you get suede covered seats, piano black console, alloy wheels and other nicer bits. Which makes its $17 500 price pretty attractive. Considering my hubcaps equipped test car costs the same amount...

All new Kia K4

Just when you thought the US market was conservative.
This is Kia's mid size sedan for the Chinese market. One of their most boring designs in years!

It just looks like a small Cadenza.
Look at that rear end! It might be humanly impossible to come up with anything less inspired.

And that interior looks closer to the new Sonata than anything from Kia.

For once, the good news is: this is NOT for us.

And by the way, the redesigned Optima is actually already looking quite nice, from the spy pix I've seen of it.
Nothing like this.

Thursday, September 04, 2014

2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport

Gone is the LR2.
Now we have the Discovery Sport. (A "regular" and larger Discovery is coming up later)

I know the purist will miss the old fashion blocky look of past Land Rovers, but I think this one looks great.
(It is after all, the 21st century.)

It is powered by a 240HP 2.0 Liter Turbo, with a 9 speed Auto.

Not sure if the reliability has improved or not, but Range Rover/Land Rover has come up with some great looking models lately...