Friday, August 08, 2008

2010 Buick Lacrosse

With the hood open.
Looks like it was caught in a factory or something...

It does look much better than the current model, but is it enough really?
The Malibu is a hit, but it is much cheaper.
I'm not sure Buick has the image to go against Lexus. And that's what GM has been mentioning.

More pictures when you click on the title. Taking you to Car and Driver.

All new Acura TL video

That front end is still disturbing to me.

2009 Yaris 5 door

Just some new pictures of the "non S" version, without all the crap like spoilers and skirts around.
A much better and cleaner look.
Already popular in Canada and Europe. It might be quite a hit for Toyota in the US.

Russian traffic

Imagine driving over there.
Is it now total chaos in Russia? Are no laws respected at all?

Bug drive cut short

As I mentioned before, my new Beetle test drive was cut short by some bi@&%#&@atch who ran into me.

To be continued later...

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Mystery prototype

I hear this might be the new Buick "sedan". Whatever they decide to call it, Invicta or La Crosse.
But this doesn't really look like the Invicta production shot we saw a few weeks ago. At least the rear side windows seem very different.
Could it be a larger Buck sedan?
Something else?

Any idea???

Corvette concept coming up

I would think this is for the Detroit auto show.

I guess it's now too late to hope for a retro Corvette. Looks like the next generation will try to go "modern"...

Next "Japan only" Honda Odyssey in the US?

Honda seems to have plans to sell us the next version over here.
They are actually thinking about importing a bunch of cars here that they were previously only selling in Japan.
Through both Honda and Acura.

Which JDM Honda would you like to see in the US???

2010 GTI Info

The next GTI based on the recently introduced Golf will get more power from the 2.0 Liter turbo.
They are talking about 211hp.
But the fantastic R32 will be replaced by a GTI-R. With an even more powerful version of the 2.0 Liter engine.
Similar to the one used in the Audi TT with 265hp.

I guess those of you looking for a GTI should actually wait. The car will be available in Europe in the spring and should be here by summer.

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

2009 Yaris 5 door prices

It'll start at $13, 305. And that includes the 5 speed auto. So a manual should be even cheaper. (If you can find one..)
The horrible looking S model, with all the added spoilers and side skirts will go for $15 125. Also with an automatic
MPG should be 29/35 City/Hwy.
Which is good but not amazing.

I did get 40 MPG Hwy in my Focus test drive. Which was better than the official numbers.
So it might also be possible to get better numbers with the Yaris.

Even more pictures of the new Golf

With better details.
Showing, once again, how good VW is at designing interiors that really look upscale. Not really original or very modern, but upscale looking.

Honda Clarity video

Not sure if this is a commercial or what.
Not even sure who can actually get one.

But I'm sure at $600 a month including insurance, the waiting list is pretty long...

Hyundai Genesis coupe interior

It seems to look a bit better on this picture.
Funny how a year ago at the L.A auto show, most people thought this car would come with a choice of a V6 and a V8. Just like the sedan.
But now that we know there will be no V8, the 2.0 4 Turbo actually seems the best option.

I've been driving the 2.0 Turbo in the Solstice for a week and I am convince these engines have a great future.

2009 Toyota RAV4 (US)

Small changes here and there.
The most obvious seems to be the outside spare tire delete on the top of the line V6.
Other models keep it. Not sure why...
Base engine is now a 2.5 Liter with 179hp.
More than enough. It also get slightly better gas mileage.

And I guess, you can now get navigation in some models...

No big news, really...

Another shot of the new Golf interior

It sure doesn't look cheap.
But will it be modern enough to compete with what's coming up from the competition?

2009 Honda Ridgeline

New front. Inside new steering wheel and a few more things...
I almost forgot, three more HP!!!

Not a big deal..

More new Fiesta pictures

If Ford keeps it the way it is for the US, they should have a big hit on their hands.
By next year, the US market will be just perfectly ripe for this...

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Ford/GM powertrain partnership?

Why not.

They already worked on the 6 speed automatic transmission together. So why not engines?
GM has a god 3.6 liter V6. Ford has a good 3.5 Liter V6. Why not make only one and use in more cars.
If that kind of things can help save both companies, I say go for it.
Who cares really. A good motor is a good motor.

I say they could even share platforms if it helps.

What do you think?
Is the GM/Ford war over?

2009 Toyota Yaris 5 door S

That "S" package looks pretty horrible.
I mean how much crap can you ad to this little car to make it look like ass.

I hope they still have a "regular" model available...

More new Golf photos

These are much larger, so if you click on them, you can actually see the car much better!!
Amazing, right?

I must say, this is growing on me. Let's hope VW reliability is also growing.
This could be a very nice car in the US if it was reliable.

And, even though I like the "US only" 2.5 Liter engine, they need to give us something that gets much better mileage.
I've been averaging about 20MPG in the new Beetle I was driving (It got into a crash, so I'll be finishing the test drive of that one later...)

Mysterious Chevrolet compact Crossover/Van thing...

Testing at the same time as the new Cruze (in front).
Looks like GM might be using the same platform for a small Crossover.
Will it compete with the next Opel Zafira?
Will we get it over here?

GM had said in the past that Chevrolet US would be getting their version of the next Zafira.
So it could be it...

9.3 Concept coming up.

Saab will show a concept version of the next generation 9-3 at the upcoming Paris Auto Show.
Pretty much what they did in Detroit with the 9.4 X Concept.
The production model will be almost exactly the same.

The car above is just an illustration.

Camaro Convertible in the streets

Looking really good. But not anytime soon.
The convertible has been delayed for a few months.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Short Solstice Video

I was driving up and down PCH this past week end end shot this really short thing with my phone.
I'm actually trying a feature I never used from Blogger which allows me to upload videos from my desktop.
We'll see if it works.

I'll have more on the car,including more pictures and a "real" video. Complete with the usual cheezy music...

Sunday, August 03, 2008

3 Door Golf

Our next Rabbit. On which the next GTI will be based on.

A bit over a year away for the US market.

New TL Interior

A little closer to the new Klingon designed interior.

Next Saab 9-5

And not a minute too soon.
I remember seeing prototypes of the current 9-5 driving around a few months before the car came out.
And they looked lame then.

The new one is supposed to be a bit smaller outside. And let's hope it does look original.
This illustration is nice but not really amazing...

All new VW Golf

All new is really a matter of speech. It is based on the current platform and doesn't really look more modern.

But then again, the "new" Golf always looks kind of lame. They are never the most exciting cars in their class.
So this might look a bit better in person.
I think the interior is a step up. But a tiny one.

This thing should go on sale here next year. It will compete with much better looking cars like the new Astra (coming here), the new Mazda 3 and the new Euro Focus (also coming here).

I predict tough times ahead for VW...

Solstive GXP Drive

I've been almost driving no stop.
And I found out this car is pretty much like a gorgeous girlfriend.
It almost doesn't matter what is wrong with it.
You're under a spell. You notice what's wrong, but... Who cares...

But when you wake up in the morning, this is still just metal and plastic. So your feelings are much easier to manage than with a girlfriend.

The car is just a blast to drive. I find the steering about perfect. The suspension is the right blend of form and comfortable.
And the car is extremely solid. Not a noise or rattle ever no matter how bad the road is.
The engine is fast and smooth. And very quiet. With just the right amount of exhaust sound. And it does sound sporty, not loud or fake like some exhaust out there.
And there is no turbo lag at all.

But... Nothing is ever perfect. The interior is made of one cheap plastic after another. But it also does look good.
And the car's base price is pretty low. So I don't really mind it that much. Although it seems it wouldn't take that much to improve the materials.

The worse part is. like everyone says, there is no room to put stuff. (I will post more pics later)
The center console doesn't even have a small tray to put stuff. And no drawer of any kind under the radio.
It's almost weird.

So there is an iPod plus. Great.
But no place to put your iPod. You just need to get a wire long enough to let it sit on the seat?

But like I said, it puts a smile on my face every single time I drive it. Even whenI just look at it.

And It won't cheat on me, or get tired of me, or tell me it's not "in love" with me.
I'll never hear "we need to talk" or "let's not do this for a while".

Saturday, August 02, 2008

Chevrolet Cruze

Even though this is the Korean market Daewoo version, this is pretty much what we'll get over here.
So far so good.
Even though this looks like a high end loaded version.

This car cannot come too soon for GM.

Sageway rip off?


Friday, August 01, 2008

All new Acura TL interior

I am not sure what to say.

But it does look like it was designed by a Klingon.

2009 Jeep Compass/Patriot

This is the new interior they were talking about a while ago.
At least on the picture it looks much better. I guess nothing could have been worse than the current one...
I still think they should drop the Compass.
The Patriot at least looks like a Jeep

The current interior, one of the worse around. From anywhere.


For years BMW was thinking about a larger than X6 crossover/SUV.
No more.

They will instead be working on a 1 series based crossover.
I guess that would be the X1, right?

Go stop by and take a look at their large selection of
BMW Wheels.


GM just announced a $15 billion loss for the quarter.
The quarter, that's not even the whole year.

How much money do they have? How can they stay in business????
I'm no business guy and this makes no sense to me. Unless they have hundreds of billions in reserve, which they don't.
How long can they last?

They have tons of stuff coming up, but will it be enough?

What do you think could turn things around?
They won't make money on the Volt. Can the Cruze be as popular as the Civic? (I don't think so)

What bright spot do you see in GM's future?
Or Ford and Chrysler for that matter...

Another Mazda3 illustration

While waiting for the real thing to show up.
We'll see the sedan at the upcoming Los Angeles auto show.
The hatchback should come out later at a European show.