Monday, 28 November 2022
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The numbers don’t lie.

While wagons represent just 1.4 percent of vehicle sales in the U.S., the Subaru Outback owns the segment, representing nearly 80 percent of those sales.

But it’s not resting on its laurels, and the Outback — one of the few truly affordable options in the wagon category — is back with a brand new design for 2020. 
 
I recently spent some time in a 2020 Outback, and I’m back with a report on how well it measures up against the myriad SUV and wagon options available.

LOOKS 

Built on Subaru’s Global Platform, the 2020 Subaru Outback offers a very spacious cabin that is very comfortable for all passengers.

The vehicle is 191.3 inches long, and features excellent cargo space: specifically 32.5 cubic feet with rear seats up, and 75.7 cubic feet with the seats down.
For 2020, the passenger volume and maximum cargo value both see slight increases. There is also a 60/40 split in the rear seat to boost versatility.

Additional Info

  • Vehicle 2020 Subaru Outback  
  • Price as tested $38,355 (starts around $27K)  
  • Best feature Spacious design and cargo space, one of the best remaining affordable wagons, strong tech upgrades
  • Rating 4 out of five stars   
  • Who will want this vehicle? Those who want more than a sedan, but don’t want to join the SUV bandwagon, have a great option in the Outback  
Posted On Monday, 02 March 2020 02:23 Written by
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Long viewed as one of the more basic, low-priced vehicles available to buyers on a budget, the Nissan Versa comes back for 2020 with a redesign aimed at stepping up its status among subcompact vehicles.  

I recently spent some time in a 2020 Versa and I’m back with a full report on how impactful the changes for the new model were, and how it competes in the subcompact sedan segment.

LOOKS

While in the past the Versa mostly blended in and lacked character in its exterior design, the 2020 Versa makes a strong impression and delivers a big step up design-wise — with a new look that’s lower to the ground, as well as wider and longer, and featuring sharp lines.

A statement is also made with the new interior, which feels quite comfortable and is more upscale than its bargain basement price would lead you to expect. The Versa seats 5 people, though the rear seating will be tight for adults. Controls are well placed and easy to use.

Additional Info

  • Vehicle 2020 Nissan Versa     
  • Price as tested $21,005 (starts around $15K)  
  • Best feature Affordability, strong tech and safety features for a subcompact  
  • Rating 4 out of five stars   
  • Who will want this vehicle? Buyers on a budget who aren’t focused on power or spaciousness   
Posted On Sunday, 09 February 2020 01:27 Written by
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When you’re battling the likes of top-sellers like the Camry and Accord, standing out in the midsize sedan category isn't easy. But that is the task facing the underdog Mazda6.

Despite that daunting task, the brand succeeds fully in this quest.

After a week in the 2020 Mazda6, I can confidently say that due to a combination of sharp design, strong power plant and technology, the flagship Mazda6 sedan makes its case as one of the best, perhaps even THE best, in class.

Additional Info

  • Vehicle 2020 Mazda6  
  • Price as tested $36,915 (Starting price: $24,000)
  • Best feature Sporty ride, strong tech features, high-end interior design 
  • Rating 4 out of five stars  
  • Who will want this vehicle? Sedan buyers who want good looks, elegant design, and a class-leading drive quality
Posted On Wednesday, 05 February 2020 00:54 Written by
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If you have the need for speed, and a luxurious design to go along with it, there are plenty of sedans to choose from among the elite luxury brands.

For Mercedes-Benz, one such crown jewel offering is the AMG E53 (a high-end version of its E-class sedan), which I recently was able to experience. Read on for full details on how it measures up.
 

LOOKS

Long, low and shapely by anyone’s definition, the E53 boasts a simply beautiful exterior design, which is typical of a Mercedes offering.
You can also opt for attractive 5-spoke wheels with black accents (a $750 option) and a panorama sunroof ($1,000).

The Interior, with extremely comfortable seating and a smooth design that flows well, is equally impressive and one of the best in class. 

Additional Info

  • Vehicle 2019 Mercedes-Benz AMG E53 sedan   
  • Price as tested $97,590
  • Best feature A driving experience enthusiasts will truly love
  • Rating 4.5 out of five stars 
  • Who will want this vehicle? Luxury sedan buyers looking for both excitement and refinement 
Posted On Sunday, 29 December 2019 01:31 Written by
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Up against tough odds, Genesis continues putting up a tough battle to gain market share in the luxury realm.
A boost has come this year for Hyundai’s luxury brand from the award-winning G70 model, but the reality is that quality is constant throughout the Genesis lineup. 

The Genesis brand is ranked among the most reliable luxury cars, and it compares well in most spec areas to many of the long-standing big boys in the luxury world. 

Here’s a look at their midsize sedan offering: The Genesis G80. 

LOOKS

The G80 features extremely sharp designs on both the exterior and interior of the vehicle, though to be fair it doesn’t exude quite as luxurious a feel as you’ll get from some of its rivals.

The interior is quite roomy for the class, and features a sharp-looking dashboard with both analog and digital clocks. Another nice addition was the panoramic sunroof, and you also get sunshades in the rear and sides.

The Nappa leather seating surfaces were plush and comfortable, even on longer drives. There was also some attractive carbon fiber and aluminum interior trim. The steering wheel is leather-wrapped, and heated, and feels good on the driver’s hands.

Additional Info

  • Vehicle 2019 Genesis G80 
  • Price as tested $58,745 (base price starts around $43K)     
  • Best feature Strong in technology and safety, smooth yet powerful drive  
  • Rating 4 out of five stars
  • Who will want this vehicle? Luxury car buyers seeking something new that competes well with the traditional brands    
Posted On Monday, 02 December 2019 22:51 Written by
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