Showing posts with label 2017. Show all posts
Showing posts with label 2017. Show all posts

Friday, September 16, 2016

European version of the new Honda Civic Hatchback


Words are colliding in my head to describe this...

What a horrible mess. Just when you though the US version was overdone, Honda proves us it can do even worse.
I mean, just look at the amount of crappy looking black plastic trim all over this car.
This is a bad design made worse.

Pretty amazing.

A while ago, I was pretty excited when Honda announced the return of the hatchback in the US Civic line. What a great idea! What could go wrong?

This has to be maybe the worse Honda design of all time. And pretty much the worse looking hatchback on the market.
Here, it will compete with "beauties" like the Mazda3, Cruze hatchback, Focus etc...
In Europe, it is in the same segment as the Golf, Astra, Megane etc...

I just cannot imagine who would want to spend their hard earned money in such a visual nightmare.

Honda should be ashamed. 

Monday, August 15, 2016

2017 Honda Civic Hatchback


I can't say I am surprised, since I posted a picture of this a long time ago.
Still, I think this is pretty horrible.
(And that's coming from someone who loves hatchbacks)

I mean this is one of the busiest design I have seen in years, making the Mazda3 look like a classy model.
It seems that every other hatchback on the market looks better.

Just look at that rear bumper!
(What is going on in the mind of someone who designs that???)
This is pretty close to a visual nightmare.
Not only when compared to the competition, but also the previous versions of the Civic hatch. The ones we didn't get in the US...

The good news is that now, the 1.5 Liter Turbo is available with the 6 speed manual, not just the CVT.
The manual is available on LX, Sport and EX models.
(So no leather and stick shift for you)


This is the current one. Sold in Europe.
Not the best looking thing ever. But still. the new one makes this look like Marilyn Monroe.


I still think the previous generation was the best ever.
Never sold here, of course.

Still a great looking, original  design.
Now compare this to the new one...



Wednesday, August 10, 2016

2017 Mazda3



Just a few changes for the new year.

And in true Mazda fashion, they didn't ruin anything. At all.
Which is great, since the Mazda3 is still, in my opinion, the best looking compact hatchback out there.
Inside it now gets the same steering wheel as the CX-9.
Which is just fine.
Otherwise it gets an LED headlights option.
Redesigned center console with electronic handbrake.
The whole thing is also supposed to be bait quieter than before.

But mostly, it is now available with Mazda's all new G-Vectoring Control.
So there....

Tuesday, August 09, 2016

US version of the all new Genesis G90 sedan


 As you can see, this is exactly the same car that went on sale in Korea a while ago.
Looks like they didn't change a thing.
(They couldn't even figure out how to hide the horrible black plastic on the grille. Which I guess is for the laser cruise control)
It doesn't look bad. And it's certainly no more boring than an Audi A8.
But for a "new" brand, it just doesn't stand out. At all.

(I saw one in the flesh a couple of months ago in Joshua Tree. And I can tell you that the car is totally invisible...)


Same thing inside. Even though it's all new, it is already old fashioned.
It looks like (because it is) an old Korean executive's company car.

The previous Equus (sold as a Hyundai) started at $62 500. And I bet this, now being its own brand and all, will be more.
While it will still be a lot less than the German competition, it won't matter at all. Since German car buyers don't even look at anything else.

It will also cost a bit less than the Lexus LS.

But the new Genesis brand has zero image. While Lexus still has a highly regarded quality image.
And there is an all new LS coming out really soon.

It looks like they are trying to do what Lexus did decades ago. Offer a super luxury full size car, and a less expensive mid size one (G80)
I am sure the G90 is solid, super quiet and comfortable, fast and just plain nice an many ways.
But this is 2016. Not 1986. And the market for these things is shrinking every day. (sad but true)




So basically, all I can say to Genesis is: Good luck with that.

The true test for the Genesis brand will be their upcoming crossovers and SUVs...

Monday, August 08, 2016

2017/18 Audi A5 Sportback


 The Sportback is a 4 door hatchback version of the A5 coupe. Kind of what BMW is doing with the 4 series.

Since the A5 is basically a coupe version of the A4 sedan (With a bit more style), the Sportback is pretty much an A4 hatch. The A4 and A5 share the same interior as well.

The whole thing is a bit convoluted, but still better organized than at BMW. Where they have a 4 series which is a 3 series coupe or hatch.
But they also have a 3 series hatchback (The GT).
At least Audi doesn't sell an A4 hatchback...

We never got the previous generation Sportback in the US. But that will change with this upcoming model.

The new A5 is a good looking car. (Even though it is a clone of the previous one)
So things should be the same with the 4 door version.

But it won't be cheap.
Audi will be charging plenty to go from a 4 to a 5.

As a reminder, this is the current A5 Sportback. Based on the previous generation A5 coupe.

Friday, July 29, 2016

2017 Honda Civic Hatchback


 Looks like it is already in production. Or at least, some pre-production models are being built in the British factory.
We are supposed to be getting this model in the US as well.
(The one pictured here looks like it could be the sporty R model)

Things might change, or be delayed due to the British exit from the European Market.
Since England will now have to renegotiate trade deals with everyone, including the US.
If there is some kind of tariff, the car might just become too expensive to export.

Let's hope Honda finds a way around this...
Here is a picture I published a while ago. Obviously not the R version.
But probably the one we will actually see in the streets.

The new compact hatchback segment will be pretty crowded next year.
With older models like the Focus, Mazda3, Kia Forte5. But also all new noels like the redesigned Elantra GT, Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback. Nissan will also bring a hatch version of the next Sentra.

All great news...

Thursday, July 28, 2016

2017 Infiniti Q60 price.

The all new Infiniti Coupe will start at $38 950. For the 2.0 Liter Turbo version.
(basically $40 000 after transportation)

Which is about $4000 more than the Q50 sedan it is based on.

Infinitis are just fine, good cars. And the coupe has always looked pretty good.
But they really do not have much of an image in the luxury car market.
Sad but true.

So let's see how it compares to its current competition:

-The BMW 4 series coupe starts at $42 845
-The Lexus RC 200T starts at $40 945
-The new Audi A5 (AWD only for now) starts at $42 150
-The new Mercedes C class Coupe starts at $43 575

Not sure what comes standard with the Infiniti, but they usually give you a bit more stuff than the Germans for the base price.
Still. It is not that much less than the competition.
Yet it has none of the prestige. And it doesn't have the super reliable reputation of the Lexus either.

I don't think the new Q60 will change much for Infiniti.
Their coupe will still mostly be invisible in the market place. No matter how good it is.

I think the only thing they could have done is come up with an amazing, stand out design.
But they didn't....

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

VW Beetle Dune Convertible Test Drive


I have driven a few versions of the current Beetle before. So this is a pretty familiar car to me. But this Dune model is all new.
Available as a coupe or convertible.

It is actually so new, that VW was not able to quote me a price on the car I was test driving for a week.
And while the coupe is on the VW site, the convertible version of the Dune isn't on there yet. (Last time I checked)
All I know is that my test car had a 1.8 Liter turbo. The one they use on almost every VW models in the US. With a 6 speed auto.
It didn't have features like GPS or the amazing Fender stereo system.
So I assume it is sort of a base model for the Dune series.

I was actually surprised by how much I liked the look of the car. Even the color!

In real life, it does have a great personality, and all these fake Crossover/SUV bits actually work.
The whole thing is just pretty charming.


Inside, it is standard Beetle convertible stuff. Except the colors.
Same thing here, I found myself loving that weird/odd/ and rather loud color combo.
The seats are great. And that dark yellow hue makes the interior even more fun than it is in the regular model.
The stereo worked fine. Apple CarPlay is great. But it is not as good as the great Fender system offered as an option.
No GPS but,  finally, VW offers a rear view camera on most of their cars in the US.
And it is a great system. as the camera is super sharp.
And it also comes with front warnings.
The color combo on these Dune seats looks great. At least to me...

Too bad you can't put much inside that armrest. Even my "not that big" camera couldn't even fit there. At all.
Looks like the Bug is finally getting LED tail lights. At least on the Dune version...
Looking really good.
The ugly spoiler is still there. Doing its job of "spoiling" a great design.
It just looks like a bookshelf. Quite ridiculous.
The very first thing I notice was how smooth the ride is. It feels actually smoother than the regular Beetle. The car rides a bit higher, and the 18 inch tires might be quite different.
But it really does ride almost like a luxury car. (Especially compared to the 20 inch tires on the Cascada I had a few weeks earlier)
But at the same time, the steering felt quite a bit heavier than other Beetle models.
Which is not a bad thing. Since I always feel that modern steerings are a bit too light for my taste...

Otherwise, the drive is pretty similar to other VWs with that same engine.
It is mostly smooth, and  quiet. But not as much as the competition. Especially new turbo engines from Ford and GM.
There is still a bit of turbo lag. It still feels a bit weird when starting from a stop.
Like if the engine had turn itself off. Similar to a hybrid.( Although It does not have that feature)

Otherwise it feels very solid and quiet.

The Beetle is usually rated at 25/34 MPG. (Not sure what the official numbers for the Dune are)
During my weekly drive I was able to get 25 in the City. Although it quickly went down to around 20 when I was having fun.
But on the freeway I had no problem getting over 38MPG

I really enjoyed my week with the new Beetle Dune.
More that I though I would.

It has a great, fun personality. And it drives great. The luxury car ride is an added bonus.

I am not sure of the price, but there has to be quite a premium over the regular convertible model.
Which starts at around $25 500. I would guess my test car was around $28 000. But who knows...

I couldn't help but comparing it to the Buick/Opel Cascada I was driving a few weeks earlier.
Sure, at around $37 000, it is a lot more money.
But..  For some reason, they are only about $50 a month apart when leasing.
Weird.

For that $50, the Cascada is a larger, roomier car. Even though the Bug feels very solid, the Cascada feels even more substantial. With a real back seat where 2 adults can actually fit.
It also comes with much more stuff. It is larger and heavier and uses a little bit more gas. But not that much more.
And the engine is quieter and smoother.


In the most recent new car quality study from JD Powers, the Cascada scores very high as well.
While VW usually are not known for being reliable cars. (At least in the US. As they reputation in Europe is golden for some reason)

That's just a though . A very personal one, since most buyers won't really compare these two cars.
But since I really enjoyed driving both cars, I thought I would mention it...




Monday, July 25, 2016

2017 Mitsubishi Lancer



 Looks like the  Lancer is not dead yet.
At least in China.

This newish/improved/revised model is for the Chinese market.
In other countries, Mitsubishi will now concentrate on SUVs and Crossovers. A well as Plug-ins and EVs.

I must say, this does look more like a Chinese design to me.
This is the current model.
Which, I think, still looks OK. Especially for how old it is.
Sure it's boring, but it was never ugly.

These idiots just gave up on it years ago...

Monday, July 18, 2016

All new 2017 BMW 1 series sedan

We've know for a while it was coming. So here it is.
Looking like any other BMW sedan designs form the last 10 or 15 years.

BUT. It is their first front wheel drive sedan. Using the same platform as the new Mini Cooper and BMW Active Tourer.
Which is fine, since most people won't really care.
All they will care bout is that BMW badge they could now have for about $30 000.
Just like the Mercedes CLA or Audi A3,
all these cars need to do is look like their more expensive relatives.

So far, BMW is keeping this one for the Chinese market.
But with such competition with Audi and Mercedes, I can't imagine this car not being offered in the US soon.
Since the A3 and CLS have been really good to Audi and Mercedes in the US.

2017 Honda Avancier




So far, this is only intended for the Chinese market.

(We have seen the new Avancier before, these are just some pictures I hadn't seen before)

It is positioned above the CRV. But it is still a 5 seater. No 3rd row here.
It is also powered by a more powerful 2.0 Liter Turbo engine.

Interior looks OK, in a super boring japanese car interior sort of way.
At least it is not as offensive as the exterior design.
Which is one of the worst I have seen in many years.

Let us all prey that Honda never ever imports this thing over here.

Friday, July 15, 2016

All new 2017 Jeep SUV


These are new pictures of the long awaited model that will be replacing both the Patriot and the Compass.

So this is supposed to be larger than the Renegade but smaller than the Cherokee.
I am not sure what that really means. The Cherokee isn't that much larger than the Renegade to begin with.
But I guess Fiat's Boss is crazy about Jeep being such a cash cow. (For now)
So there will be plenty of new SUV's under the Jeep name.

So far so good. The spy shots have been showing a nice design.
Like a small Grand Cherokee.

Friday, July 08, 2016

VW Tiguan 7 seater (?)


Looks like it could be it.
(the regular 5 seater version is the grey one bellow)

Although it doesn't really look longer. At all.It almost looks like a slightly different version of the regular model.

I must say, the new Tiguan does look quite good.
In a "conservative way".

And I am sure it will be a much bigger hit in the US than the current version.
It is a bit larger and should be cheaper too.

This might very well become the best seller for them over here.  As the Jetta is running out of steam...