Tuesday, December 31, 2019

2021 Genesis GV80

These are the best pictures I have seen, so far, of the real thing. The all new Genesis GV80 SUV.
Based on a new RWD platform shared with the upcoming G80 sedan.
It will be available in January in Korea.
And a few months later in the US. 

I think this looks quite nice so far, especially inside. And could very well steal sales from the Lexus RX.

What do you think?

Monday, December 30, 2019

Production interior of the VW SMV SUV

VW showed a concept called the SMV a while ago in China. Which was a preview for an all new SUV model based on the MQB platform.
Now we get to see the interior of the actual production version.
Which seems quite modern. And downright futuristic when compared to current VW interiors like the Atlas or Tiguan.
It seems to be a bridge between VW's "regular" interiors and their new designs for the electric I.D models.

This is the concept.

Which is supposed to be very close to the upcoming production model. It could be powered by a 2.0 Liter engine (like almost everything VW makes) or a new 2.5 Liter V6. (That sounds interesting...)

The SMV is larger than it looks on these pictures since it is a couple of inches longer than the Atlas.
This is coming out in 2020, so it will probably not become the next generation Atlas (which is due for a few small changes in 2020)
Which is really too bad. As it looks at least 10 times better. And about 100 times better inside.

2021 Hyundai Santa Cruz

While the prototypes are still under heavy camouflage, you can already tell the production version (top pic) of the Santa Cruz concept (bottom) will stay pretty close to the original design.
The main change being the addition of full size rear doors.

I think this could be quite a hit for Hyundai, if priced a bit bellow the Ranger and Colorado.

Sunday, December 29, 2019

2021 VW T-Sport

That's right, VW is preparing yet another small SUV/Crossover thing.

This time it will be mostly for the Brazilian market. Although it could spread to other countries later. (mostly India and the rest of South America)

It is mostly based on the same platform as the Polo.
If so, it would basically be a raised up "4 door coupe" version of the Polo hatchback.
Which is what people are into these days...

2021 BMW 5 series

BMW will modify the 5 series for 2021.
It will mostly get a new face.

The way it is now, the 5 series, although quite bland, is one of BMW's nicest looking car.
Maybe just because the rest of its line up is so overdone and tacky.

I wonder if the 5 will be getting the huge grille they have added to almost anything else lately.
It is hard to say under the front camouflage (top pic)
At least, it looks like it won't be as horrific as the upcoming 4 series. Since you can already see it won't be that huge.

We'll see...

Saturday, December 28, 2019

Nissan Armada Sedan

This is basically what happens when you have too much money.
You start spending it on BS still like turning a Nissan Armada into a sedan.

This was built for a rich Arab Sheik. And it shows what a horrible idea it is to lower an Armada and add a trunk to it.
It looks neither luxurious or impressive. Just terrible, vulgar and weird.

But hey, it's actually kind of funny...

Chevrolet Silverado test drive.

  The new Silverado is a very nice looking truck in person.
I even like the rather weird wavy character line on the front fenders. And the front end doesn't resemble a "wall of chrome" like on some other trucks.

But overall, the look is still pretty generic for a full size pick up truck. Which, I guess, most truck buyers like.
(people who really, really want to stand out can always  get the Tesla Cybertruck)
It only looks "new" when compared to the previous generation.  Not really better or more modern. Just different...

Same thing inside. It's all new, but kind of the same.
It pushes even more the "tricky/macho feel". Everything is big, heavy, and a bit overdone.
The column shifter seems exactly the same as in previous generations.
And so does the center console cover. 

 The plastic chrome around the gauges has a very late 90's feel to it.
Again, this seems to be designed for people who have always been buying the same truck over and over again. People who don't like things to change too much...

 Everything feels very solid inside.
My expensive "Trail Boss" version had leather seats and a sunroof.
The seats are very comfortable. Unfortunately, the headrests cannot be adjusted forward (a common problem with almost all new GM interiors)
The optional sunroof is a very nice addition.

The Bose stereo sounds great. And GM's newest infotainment system is always a pleasure to use.
And very easy to figure out.

One little detail I noticed was the lack of auto-up function for the passenger windows.
Nothing vital, but the truck I was driving is priced at over $58 000...

 The rear seat is roomier than ever. With huge amounts of legroom for everyone.

 My test truck came with the optional "underseat storage" which is a dealer installed $255 option.

As you can see, it does take a lot of the cargo room. Since I had to pick up a couple of friends (and their luggage) from the airport, I actually had to remove it.
It might be convenient for some people who need to hide their expensive tools, but most will miss the otherwise available room.  And the plastic feels very flimsy.

 The driving experience can be best described as "old fashion".

Unless you are able to drive the current one and the previous generation back to back, I think it is impossible to tell the difference.
I actually think the Silverado driving experience has not really changed, or improved, for a few generations.
This really feels like you are driving a big pick up truck from 5, 10 or even 20 years ago.
The ride feels smooth since the tires are so big. But it is not really. Even on good roads, you are still constantly moving around. Up and down, left and right.
The steering and brakes are fine, but still a bit mushy.
this is in no way trying to be car like. Which, again, is fine for most real truck buyers who don't want a car in the first place.

The big 5.3 Liter V8 is always super smooth and quiet. The 8 speed automatic is quite amazing. And always willing to downshift when needed.
The ride is as I described: trucky.

And it is always very quiet. Even with the off road tires from this Trail Boss version.

 One ridiculous thing I noticed was the super cheap fixed antenna.

It doesn't retract. And is actually about an inch too high to fit in regular parking structures. So while you are looking for a spot, you hear it hitting every single concrete post above your head.
Why?  Why???  On a $58 000 truck!

 Of course, gas mileage on a giant off road pick up truck isn't gong to be great.

Still, while my test model is rated at 15MPG city. The best I got was only 12.
(although I did match the 20MPG number on the freeway)

Yes. That is 12 MPG in 2019/20...

 I did enjoy my week with the new Silverado trail Boss.

But I really think this is strictly for truck fans. People who really need that big of a truck.
And mostly, repeat Chevrolet truck buyers. Since it feels and drives pretty much the same as Chevy trucks from the past few generations.
Which, again, is a really good thing for tons of people...

 You can click on the window sticker to enlarge it.

Thursday, December 26, 2019

2021/22 Nissan Rogue Sport/Qashqai

The Qashqai is a very important model for Nissan in Europe. Where it is very popular.
It is sold in the US as the "Rogue Sport". (and not so popular here...)
While smaller than the Rogue, it does share most of its interior.

The picture above is just an illustration, but it shows a much cleaner design than the current one.

The "regular", larger Rogue will be all new for the 2021 Model year in the US.
Its smaller brother "Rogue Sport" should be coming out soon after. And they will again, probably share interiors.
Which basically will be: plenty of screens.

A small bump in power is expected from the same 2.0 Liter engine used in the new Sentra.

And let's hope Nissan finds in in their hart to offer something interesting, like a plug-in Hybrid version. Or even an electric one...

Tuesday, December 24, 2019

2021 Kia Sorento Interior

This is so far the most revealing picture of the all new Kia Sorento SUV for 2021.

I have to say, there is a bit too much chrome/satin silver trim for my taste.
It doesn't look good in BMWs and it doesn't here either.

I guess "looking upscale" means copying German designs these days.
But BMW interiors have become busy and tacky lately...

Otherwise, the screen seems to be similar to what we have seen in the 2021 Optima.
Which is nice.

I think the Sorento is in a tough spot. Since the Telluride seems so much nicer. And still starting at around $32 000. Which means it does compete with the Highlander/Pilot/Explorer crowd.
The new Sorento cannot really grow in size.
Yet it will still offers 3 rows of seats.

The current model starts at $27 000. Which is quite a bargain for its size. (only about $2000 more than a base Honda CR-V)

(thanks to a reader for the picture)

Monday, December 23, 2019

2021 Genesis G80 sedan

This could end up looking quite nice.

Some of the previous photos and illustrations we had seen of the new G80 showed something that could be pretty boring. But this new picture looks pretty good and more dynamic.

As previously mentioned, engines will now be 4 and 6 cylinders. No more V8.
The base engine could be the new 2.5 Liter Turbo used in the new Sonata N Line.

There are rumors of a full electric version coming out about a year after launch. And maybe a plug-in hybrid as well.
Something most of its competition does no offer.

Sunday, December 22, 2019

All new Hyundai Aura

I was wrong about the new Aura in my previous post from a few days ago. It turned out to be a horrible looking car...

Of course, this is a very inexpensive model mostly for the Indian market. Where a lot of tiny cars seem to have the same "tall, narrow with small wheels" proportions.
So I am sure it will do fine over there.

The interior seems actually really nice for its class. The screen is much better integrated than in almost anything Hyundai offers in the US.  
And the whole thing looks quite modern and fun.

As a reminder, these are the ridiculous "official sketches" Hyundai showed us just a few days ago.

Saturday, December 21, 2019

2021 Mercedes EQS illustration

Of course, the production version will not be as stunning looking as the concept we saw a few months ago (bellow)
Still, this will be a large hatchback sedan that will be very tough competition to the Tesla Model S.
Unlike the new Porsche Taycan. A much smaller car. 

Even though the Model S technology is still quite amazing, and Tesla's charging network is by far the best, it came out in 2012.
There is quite a market these days for an all new luxury electric sedan.

Friday, December 20, 2019

New contender for ugliest car in the word: Citroen C3L Sedan

The new sedan is based on the Chinese market Citroen 3-XR SUV. (bottom picture)
So it is basically a sedan version of a raised hatchback.
And it just looks so wrong...

Since they did their  based to keep cost down, the doors are the same on both models.
Which makes for a very awkward D-pillar on that poor sedan.

This is one sad design for Citroen.