Hatchbacks

2010 MAZDA3 and MAZDASPEED3 leave you grinning

As I look at the new front fascia for the 2010 model year MAZDA3 I wonder if designers found a little inspiration from CGI artists working on the latest Alice in Wonderland movie. Perhaps the two parties share a favorite pub and the latter left some napkin sketches lying around as carelessly as an Apple employee? Grinning from ear to…


2010 Kia Soul built to rock and roll

Apparently, funky is going mainstream in the auto industry. What began as a unique phenomena over at a little startup division of Toyota has now spread across other Asian automaker model lines. Nissan challenged the squared Scion with a Cube and now Kia has put their heart and “Soul” into the mix. (Sorry, had to work the pun in somewhere.)


2009 Toyota Venza – but what is it?

So what is it? Is this a car, a sport wagon or a sport ute? Is this the new Camry station wagon or the Toyota version of the Lexus RX? What it is is the all-new 2009 Venza from Toyota.


2009 Chevy Aveo5: no movie star but worth a look

Chevrolet Aveo has been the anchor at the entry level for Chevrolet for quite some time now and is a carry over of GMs relationship with Korean automaker Daewoo. For 2009, Aveo receives a good deal more attention that began on the sedan model last year. This little econo-cruiser gets a more powerful engine, the 1.6L Gen 3 Ecotec, as…


2009 Toyota Venza

This week’s Wednesday Walkaround features a look at the all-new 2009 Toyota Venza. Is it a car? Is it an SUV? Is it the new Camry station wagon?


First Drive: 2009 Ford Flex

Over the past week, Grinding Gears editor David Goodspeed has been privileged to drive a pair of all-new vehicles from Ford and Lincoln, both of which will arrive in dealerships this summer. The first stop was Washington, D.C., for the 2009 Lincoln MKS. That was the trip whose highlights included a visit to a winery, a sneak peek at a…


The 2008 Scion xB Gold Rush Mica Release 5.0

In recent months I’ve been looking at getting a new car.  Actually, at first, I was looking at used cars, but, eventually, I ended up looking at new hatchbacks.  I was replacing a sports car and the point of the exercise was to get a vehicle that would save me gas, and be a little more utilitarian without totally giving up the fun…


HHR+SS=One hot little Chevy

Another SS model from Chevy? What’s so special about this one? Given the vehicles with the SS badge slapped on the fender in recent years, our less-than-overwhelming enthusiasm is deserved. And the lack of fanfare over the release of the SS edition HHR should be punishable by law (and just might be in some states).