Coupes

First Drive: 2011 Scion tC

The freshman class of the Scion tC proved to be quite successful for the “garage band” division of Toyota. In fact, since its launch as a 2005 model, the little coupe has accounted for more than a third of Scions sales despite having the shortest production run (when combining xA and xD units). This is the best selling model in its showroom so for the model makeover one thing is painfully clear – don’t screw it up. Stick to your…


Volvo C70 Rocks the ‘Wow’ Factor

All photos courtesy Volvo A Volvo with “wow” factor and, dare I say it, sex appeal? One does not normally associate the three-letter expression of excitement and surprise with a Volvo vehicle but the C70 hardtop convertible coupe is changing all that. Re-introduced a few years back and refreshed last year, the latest C70 is built on a smaller platform than its predecessor, sharing the global Ford/Mazda/Volvo small car underpinnings found in the Mazda3, European Focus and Volvo S40 and…


Bimmer not a bummer, just different drummer: BMW 335i coupe

Stop the presses. An automotive journalist has been discovered that does not love, love, love the BMW 3-series. What is this heresy? Refusing to drink the Kool-Aid? Next they will be telling us this global warming scare is not all it is cracked up to be and that American automakers will be profitable despite all of the new fuel economy standards around the bend. I was really looking forward to my week in this BMW 335i coupe. I figured all…


MINI Cooper John Cooper Works convertible – Oliver Twist finally gets his wish

All photos by the Author The tide has turned on large, mobile real estate-hogging vehicles here in the U.S. and the new trend is small – OK, mini. And one of my favorite vehicles of the past decade has been the MINI Cooper. It was love at first sight (and drive) when the millennial Cooper hit U.S. shores in 2000. Built by BMW, this is one of my favorite overall vehicles and they offer one of the most enjoyable driving…


2010 Nissan 370Z Roadster

For some strange reason (dumb luck I suppose), my time behind the wheel of the new 370Z from Nissan has been met with frustrating limitations. When first released in coupe form last year, I found myself only getting to spend an afternoon with the vehicle and most of that during rush hour. More recently, Nissan sent me the roadster version of their little sports car, and this occurred during the freak snowstorm around Valentine’s Day. Needless to say it was…



2010 Chevy Camaro RS

I admit I am old school and I apologize … for nothing. I learned to type (originally) on a manual typewriter and perfected that craft on an IBM Selectric. I learned to drive in the family station wagon, before I had to wear a seatbelt. I still look forward to receiving the National Geographic magazine in the mail each month (although for slightly different reasons than when I was a young lad), and I get my hair cut by a…


Mercedes E Coupe and Honda Insight

I am going to wrap a pair of vehicles into this Grinding Gears entry. As we head down the 2010 highway I need to do a bit of housekeeping left over from the last decade. This time around I offer a coupe from across the Atlantic and a hybrid from across the Pacific.


2009 Dodge Challenger R/T: a blast from the past – and into the future

Being the most practical adult on your block will most likely earn you points at the PTA meeting and  the weekend youth soccer tournament, but for the rest of us, well, that’s why they invented pony cars.  Back in the 1960s and ’70s, two-door muscle cars were rolling out of Detroit in grand fashion, carrying  names like Mustang, Camaro and of course, Challenger.


First Drives: New Lexus IS convertible, HS250h hybrid

Despite all of the news coming out of Detroit recently, the rest of the automotive world is pretty much “business as usual.” Case in point, Lexus recently rolled out a pair of new models to the automotive press – a convertible version of IS sport sedan and a new entry-luxury hybrid sedan.


First drive: 2010 Chevy Camaro SS

The wait is over. The trilogy, complete. Chevy Camaro is back – and back in a big way. After a seven-year hiatus, the new Chevrolet Camaro has (finally) returned to dealer showrooms, and thanks to the good folks over at Freedom Chevrolet in Southwest Dallas, I was able to spend some quality time with the new musclecar sporting the regal bowtie.


Corvette still King of the Road

Year after year, the Chevrolet Corvette has been one of the most sought-after vehicles in the automotive press fleets. And, year after year, the car still continues to win praises and accolades.


2009 Jaguar XKR convertible

Last year I wrote about the Jaguar XKR convertible as one of the cars I love the most on – appropriately – Valentine’s Day. This year I find folks green with envy as I enjoy the 2009 model on (wait for it) St. Patrick’s Day, as well as the first day of Spring.


2009 Nissan 370Z

(Click on image to see video) We got to spend a little time behind the wheel of the all-new 2009 Nissan 370Z on its Dallas stop during the national Follow the Nissan Z Tour making its way across country since the car’s debut at the LA Auto Show. While having the larger 3.7-liter V-6 engine first used in the Infiniti G37 Coupe last year, we really liked the new styling and the new SynchroRev Match technology that automatically serves up…






MINI Cooper and smart fortwo – good things come in small packages

The tide has turned on large, mobile real estate-hogging vehicles here in the U.S. and the new trend is small – even tiny. We recently tested a couple of tiny cars – the MINI Cooper and the smart fortwo passion coupe – and one of the most common comments was relating to accidents, something along the lines of “I sure wouldn’t want to be in a wreck in one of those.” Well, I wouldn’t want to be in a wreck…


Ford Shelby GT500 and Bullitt Mustangs: Pony Power

… Like Steve McQueen All I need’s a fast machine And I’m gonna make it all right … Sheryl Crow Four decades after hitting the big screen and redefining the on-screen car chase, the Ford Mustang Bullitt returns to the streets in 2008, blending the best Mustang ever with the latest Ford Racing technology. Not only did we spend a week with the Bullitt, but we also got our hands on the Shelby GT500 Mustang, an icon of true American…


Honda CR – Go-Kart on steroids

While Honda lists the “CR” designation of the S2000 CR as referring to this new version as a “club racer” edition, I kind of thought it would also fit the bill as “Corvette reduced.” The new Honda produces about half the power of the Corvette from half the number of engine cylinders, costs about half the price of a Corvette and is about half the comfort and convenience as the Chevy roadster.