Sedans

Joy of Driving Alive and Well in All-New 2014 Kia Forte EX Sedan

Kia continues to surprise me with just how much better its vehicles have become these days. I remember back to some real “econobox” models last decade that looked and felt as cheap as they come, but over the last few years the automaker has truly come into its own, and the 2014 Kia Forte is no exception to this rule.


Toyota Avalon Finally Gets a Personality

Over the past couple of years there has been a great deal of news coming from the Toyota/Lexus camp, but one headline that may have gone unnoticed was the complete makeover of the flagship sedan Avalon. Not only is this the best (and most “American”) Avalon to date, but Toyota now offers a hybrid variant to consumers as well.


2013 Nissan Sentra Is a ‘Great Little Car’

Funny how memories are jogged sometimes. Could be from a scent, a sound or a sight. Spending a week with the new Nissan Sentra compact sedan brought back memories of the launch program a year ago in northern California including all the great roads, good food and wonderful wine we were treated to during our time there.


All-new Dodge Dart a Serious Contender in the Compact Segment

Fresh from bankruptcy recovery and newfound corporate leadership, Dodge is slowly clawing its way back into the automotive market with new and improved product and it has even resurrected another well-known name from the past and given it new life (a la Alfa Romeo) in the form of the all-new 2013 Dodge Dart compact sedan. No sooner had the ink dried on the corporate restructuring papers did Dodge begin work…


Toyota Launches All-New Corolla for 2014

The Toyota Corolla has been the best-selling car on the planet since its inception in 1966 but lately it has been playing second fiddle to the compact car from Ford. Toyota needs a change and they need it now. Introducing the all-new 2014 Corolla that is on sale now and arriving in showrooms very soon. Over the past five decades Toyota has built a solid global reputation for reliability, efficiency…


Lexus IS F is Fun, Fast, Fierce

While Lexus has been giving the European luxury sedan segment fits for the past couple of decades, they have won many battles, but the automaker overall continued falling short of winning the war. Lexus has been toying with the sport sedan segment since introducing IS to North America more than a decade ago, and with the latest generation IS 350 they give the Bavarians a real run for their money….


Living Large in the all-new 2014 Acura RLX

Acura has quietly introduced a new flagship sedan that it calls RLX. It qualifies as a midsize car by EPA standards but sports all the accoutrements expected in a large luxury cruiser and delivers it with a luxo-barge pricetag in the mid-$50s. The luxury division of Honda brings the new 2014 RLX premium sedan to market with a whisper, and at some of the biggest auto shows this year it…


Thirty Years and 10 Million Cars Later, Toyota Camry Still Number One

There are certain words that are almost never used in automotive reviews of the best-selling sedan in America, the Toyota Camry. Those words include sexy, sporty, dynamic, titillating or fun. Apparently no one cares, especially consumers as Camry has led sedan sales here in the States for 14 out of the past 15 years and this past month Toyota sold its 10 millionth model since introducing Camry here some 30…


2013 Kia Optima Hybrid Update Shows What a Difference a Year Can Make

I see it has been a year since our Carly Z reviewed the Optima Hybrid midsize sedan from Kia. She raved about its styling and onroad characteristics. Fast forward one year, and Kia has delivered an updated 2013 model that features upgrades to the hybrid powertrain component, an area I was critical of in the commonly outfitted Sonata Hybrid from sibling Hyundai when it launched just prior to the Kia….


Ford’s 2014 Product Preview

Design is still the leading factor when purchasing a new vehicle according to Ford Motor Company. The Dearborn, Michigan-based automaker opened its 2014 product preview for journalists with a “talk show” format presentation in which Ford president of the Americas Joe Hinrichs and global product development group vice president Raj Nair answered prepared questions about Ford’s present and future. Hinrichs explained Ford’s recent gains in market share are driven by…


2013 Hyundai Azera Is Just So ‘Buicky’

While large sedans are not garnering the most sales in automobile showrooms these days they are a segment sought after by a very loyal and respected buying demographic. And automakers are working harder than ever to not only address the needs of repeat customers but attract new wallets and pocketbooks into their showrooms by freshening these model lines. Case in point is the new Azera from Hyundai. Azera has been…


2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid Offers Best of All Worlds

I’d been looking forward to driving the new Ford Fusion since attending its global launch event in Detroit at the 2012 Auto Show there. Ford was taking a huge leap of faith in completely making over a vehicle that was already well received and fairly popular with consumers. Enter the 2013 Ford Fusion and its myriad powertrain offerings and modern styling, not to mention sales figures, and it is clear…


Spirit of Driving Alive and Well with the 2014 Lexus IS Models

Just when you thought you had your mind made up on which entry luxury sport sedan to purchase, Lexus has to go and make over its IS model line and this upcoming 2014 might just have consumers putting the brakes on as they head to their favorite Bavarian auto dealer. The 2014 IS is the third generation of the youthful yet elegant little luxo-sedan from Lexus, the first arriving as…


2013 Dodge Charger Pays Homage to Past and Present

Dodge recently redesigned its fullsize Charger sedan, giving it bodylines and other styling cues that pay homage to the iconic car’s heritage. Keeping it current and marketable, the automaker loads the vehicles with a host of modern powertrains and interiors (and safety equipment). Under the hood of our first recent Charger tester – an R/T – was the latest 5.7-liter V-8 HEMI with Fuel Saver cylinder deactivation technology that offers…


2013 Cadillac ATS Premium Turbo

Cadillac has a new compact car. It is called the ATS and it is almost enough to forgive the luxury division at GM for that horrible first foray into the compact segment dubbed Cimarron, the turtle-like Chevy Citation knock-off of the 80s. Almost. ATS arrives as an all-new, lightweight entry luxury sedan in rear-wheel drive architecture offering a trio of powertrain options – two four-cylinder models and a V-6.


2014 Kia Cadenza Stylishly Conquers the Pacific Coast

Last week I was invited to test drive the 2014 Kia Cadenza along with a small group of other bloggers and auto journalists. The location Kia chose couldn’t have been more beautiful; we arrived in San Diego on Wednesday afternoon and took a short ride 20 miles north to Del Mar, an oceanside resort town. We stayed at the L’Auberge Del Mar, a 120 room boutique hotel on a hill…


2013 Cadillac XTS AWD

Cadillac, like so many automakers, has gone through a product transformation of late. Adding new models, discontinuing others, all the while attempting to reach new clientele without losing the base customers that got them here. Large, luxurious land yachts have always been the staple at Cadillac but to look at the current lineup one would be left scratching their head. Where have all the big cars gone? Yes, Lincoln and…


2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid for Earth Day

Let’s face it – going green will cost you, at least when it comes to your automobile. Nearly every automaker charges a premium for their most environmentally sensitive models when compared to comparable gas-only alternatives. At Volkswagen things are no different. The last new Jetta we tested was the TDI turbo-diesel model that arrived at the high end of the pricing spectrum for the model line. Now the German automaker…


2013 Mazda3 in the Grinding Gears Garage

Grinning from ear to ear like the Cheshire Cat, the 2013 Mazda3 embodies that all familiar “zoom-zoom” marketing philosophy of Mazda’s while offering value, quality and a truly nice driving experience for the segment. And whether you love or hate the styling, Mazda says the bold design was intentionally polarizing and was achieved through its design philosophy of “Nagare,” or flow. Since going to the single digit moniker for its vehicle…


2013 Honda Accord Touring in the Grinding Gears Garage

The Honda Accord is one of the longest running nameplates from a Japanese automaker on the roads of America today. Model year 2013 marks the start of the ninth-generation of the popular midsize sedan, and it offers not only coupe and sedan variants but a new plugin hybrid version as well. Honda is celebrating 30 years of Accord production in the United States with this newest Accord that has been…


Ford Focus Electric Quick Drive

It’s been nearly a year since Ford announced official class-leading EPA certification for the Focus Electric, and last month while visiting the automaker I found myself getting a few moments behind the wheel of the EV at the Dearborn, Michigan test facility. Zipping around the track on a frozen morning just outside Detroit, I found the Focus Electric to exhibit surprisingly good acceleration with driving characteristics remaining close to my…