Showing posts with label test-drive. Show all posts
Showing posts with label test-drive. Show all posts

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Buick Cascada test drive coming up.


I just got a new Cascada to drive for a week.
This is a car I was really waiting for.

I really loved it when it was introduced as an Opel in Europe a couple of years ago. And I was one of these people who was hoping it would end up here as a Buick.
Well, here it is...

First thoughts:
I still love the design. It looks really great in person.
Like everyone has said before me, the interior is nice, but in a "3 to 5 year old GM" sort of way.
Lots of buttons, smallish screen weirdly angled back etc...

Otherwise so far it seems really quiet, and feels as solid as the good German car that it actually is.

I will report on it very soon. 

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Chevrolet Volt test drive. Part one.

 I got the Volt yesterday. For a week.
It had an EV range of 45 miles when delivered to me. (Not the full 53 I was hoping for...)

Still, plenty for a few day-drives.
I was curious about the gas mileage when the car is not in EV mode.
So I used the "hold" mode, which saves "the juice" for later. A very cool feature.

 As you can see. For these few miles, MPG was very impressive.
But I also noticed that it did use some of that juice. By the end of the day, in the "hold" mode, my total EV range was only about 39 miles...
(The picture above was taken today, after charging)



At the end of the day, I plugged it in. At a regular 120 outlet. So technically, it should take about 13 hrs to get a full charge.
Which I didn't need since it still said "39".

But, about 13hrs later, I was still at "just"  49 miles. Not the 53 miles advertised for the full charge.
Maybe that plug at the lot where I parked the car was defective? Or something else...
Who knows.

 
 The rear hatch is really big. And quite heavy.
But the inside cover is just a rather flimsy cloth sheet. Unlike the solid stuff found in most other hatchbacks. Maybe to save weight?
 Someone was asking me about rear legroom. so here it is.
I am 5'11" and drive pretty far from the steering wheel, and that's what's left behind me.
Which isn't bad. Technically, the new Volt has a bit more rear legroom.

And here is what it looks like whith an actual super good looking human.

Someone was also asking about visibility. 
And I was mentioning the rather high position of the rear window.
So this is what it looks like when you turn around. 

Not that you really need to, since it comes with a back up camera.

So far there is plenty of power all the time. If you drive in a relaxed manner, the engine almost never comes on during normal city driving.
And when it does, it is much quieter than before. It just seems to be far away...

Next, I will try to compare MPG when the battery is completely empty.
And, of course, check the actual range of the full EV mode.


Tuesday, December 29, 2015

GMC Yukon Denali XL Test Drive


The current Yukon/Tahoe/Suburban might be only a little over 2 years old, but they are already super popular.
Around L.A, they are pretty much everywhere.

Last year, GM sold over 152000  Tahoes/Suburbans, and over 71000 Yukons/Yukon XL.
Which is quite amazing.

They also seem to have replaced the TownCar as the favorite choice as a luxury ride to the airport.
(Or to the local Sleazy Hollywood "PullDown" club)
And they do look quite handsome. In a big brick sort of way.

The interior is nice too. Although I am still not sure why they still use the old 70's style column shifter. (Obvious cost saving?) But I got used to it pretty quickly. Even though it does cheapen the whole interior feel and look.

That interior is otherwise pretty nice.
 But, there are still a few cheap plastic bits here and there.
And the fake wood does a great job at... looking fake.

The Bose stereo sounded really good. But the interface got quite annoying a few times.
Like going back to shuffle without being asked to do so. Or just stop playing stuff altogether. etc...



The seats were surprisingly flat and hard.
(Quite a surprise to me since most GM seats are now really good)

Here is a shot of that beautiful "wood like thing".


And, of course. It is super roomy. Front and back. Even the 3rd row seats.
And the back in the long version (Similar to the Suburban) has a huge truck. And a giant space when all the seats are flat.
(That's pretty much the point of getting something that huge isn't it...)
On the road, it is, of course, very quiet.
But, the big 6.2 Liter V8 wasn't as super smooth and quiet as the smaller 5.3 Liter unit available in its Tahoe twin. (or the regular "non Denali" Yukon)

The new 8 speed transmission is mostly fine. But can also be a bit rough at really low speed around town.

The 6.2 Liter Yukon is rated at 14/21 MPG for the 4WD version I had for a week.
I could only get 12MPG in the city. And I was trying very hard...
But got 23 on the Highway.

The ride is pretty smooth, but not as isolated as I thought it would be.
It always lets you know that, no matter how much money you spent, this is still a truck, not a car.


Talking about price, the Denali version I had was priced at $78 825.
Which included about $8000 worth of options.

For my money, I would skip the Denali altogether and get the regular Yukon.
You can still get la loaded version with leather, sunroof etc... And the smoother 5.3 Liter engine
And save around $15 000.

This is something I had to try.
The "Camping in the Yukon" night. And it works. There is more than enough room behind the front seats for an inflatable mattress for 2 people.
And all the extra stuff you need for a cool camping night by the beach.

And with a total of 3 screens, it was a great way to watch the Larry Sanders show again.

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Citroen Cactus test drive coming up: Something very different.

While in Europe for a few days, I am actually driving the new Citroen Cactus.
So I will be reporting on that very soon.

So far so good. Besides looking really cool, and different, it has a 3 cylinder engine.
My only previous experience with a 3 cylinder was a quick drive a few weeks ago in a Focus. And I was pretty amazed.
Same thing here.

More soon....