Thursday, 29 September 2022

BMW has a variety of popular models, but even for this sports-car focused brand, SUVs are increasingly stealing the spotlight.

Case in point: The BMW X3 — a compact luxury SUV offering — is now the brand’s best-selling model in the U.S. with over 75,000 vehicles sold in 2021.

That’s a tremendous success considering the strong competition in this sector from brands including Genesis, Benz, Audi, Cadillac, Lincoln and more.

I recently tested the 2022 BMW X3, which features design upgrades as well as tech improvements, and I’m back with a full report.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

Due to sheer numbers, much of the conversation surrounding luxury SUVs focuses on non-domestic models.

But it’s important to remember that Detroit’s automakers are still holding their own in this popular segment.

One of those domestic brands battling for buyer loyalty in the luxury realm is Lincoln, Ford’s luxury arm, and one of the weapons in their arsenal is the 2022 Lincoln Nautilus, a two-row midsize luxury SUV — based originally on the Ford Edge — which continues to impress even against tough competition from Audi/Benz/BMW/Lexus/Cadillac/Genesis and other competitors.

Sitting between Lincoln’s smaller Corsair SUV and larger Aviator SUV in the lineup, it keeps the updates to interior design and infotainment that were first introduced for 2021, with no major changes for the 2022 model. 

I recently spent some time in a 2022 Nautilus, and I’m back with a full report on how it measures up in the intense luxury SUV battlefield.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

After the highly successful debut of Genesis’ initial SUV offering, the GV80, it was obvious that more SUVs were coming in the pipeline from this upstart luxury brand.

The first of those new SUV offerings to drop was the 2022 Genesis GV70, a smaller but equally impressive luxury crossover from this upscale branch of the world of Hyundai.

Just as the GV80 — with its attractive interior and exterior design and a powerful and smooth ride quality — instantly made a strong impact in the competitive midsize luxury SUV category, the GV70 follows that template to a tee. Add in some extremely impressive tech features, and this compact SUV can hold its own against the very best in the segment — including solid offerings from BMW, Lexus, Volvo and beyond.

I recently spent some time behind the wheel of a GV70, and I’m back with a full report on the GV70, which is based on the design of the G70 sports sedan but offers higher seating and more cargo space.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

The luxury SUV battlefield features some of the fiercest competition you’ll find in today’s automotive landscape. A luxury vehicle really needs to shine to stand out in a field that features Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Lexus, and other well-respected brands.

But some brands can still take the heat. With its RDX model, Acura had pulled off what many thought they could not — continuing to sell at numbers that rival and even top some luxury competitors.

It’s not resting on its laurels either, as for 2022 RDX gets a sportier design, an upgraded and more insulated interior that all five passengers will enjoy, and an improved suspension and ride quality.

I recently got behind the wheel of the latest RDX, and I’m back with a full report on how it fares vs. the luxury competition.

LOOK

Eye-pleasing changes have been made to achieve a bold and sporty front end design of the 2022 RDX, from the grille to the lighting setup to adding larger air intakes. 

My test vehicle featured an attractive Apex Blue Pearl paint job, but a wide variety of colors from white to violet to black are also offered. The panoramic moonroof is a very nice feature that luxury buyers have come to expect, and the RDX features Jewel Eye LED headlights and LED tail lights. 

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

There’s no shortage of luxury SUVs available today; in fact they seem to be growing in number.

But if you want one with a body-on-frame, trucklike construction that will let you get out of the city and into the great outdoors, the number of options is significantly smaller in the luxury realm.

One option that’s been around for many years is the Lexus GX 460, a 4-wheel-drive, 7-passenger luxury SUV that aims to please both on-road and off-road.

It would seem to be a strike against the GX 460 that it hasn’t seen a full refresh since the 2010 model, literally an eternity in car years. Surprisingly though, it holds up quite well despite its old age — though some buyers may be swayed by more modern-looking competitors in the luxury realm.

One bright spot for 2022 is the new Black Line Special Edition — which brings a fresh new design approach to the GX lineup.

I recently spent some time in a 2022 GX 460, and I”m back with a full review.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

 

Long a symbol of success and a favorite among those with the means to afford it, the Cadillac Escalade was about due for an update to keep up with growing competition in the luxury SUV realm; And that’s exactly what Cadillac did for 2021.

Completely redesigned to be longer than the previous model, with additional space for passengers and cargo and a bevy of new tech features including GM’s Super Cruise, the 2021 Escalade lives up to the hype and continues the legacy of this signature vehicle.

I recently spent some time in a 2021 Escalade Platinum with 4WD, so read on for my full assessment of the latest version of Cadillac’s esteemed land yacht.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

Straddling the line between more modest SUVs and the luxury world, the Buick Envision finds itself in an interesting position in this vast SUV landscape.

For the 2021 model year, Buick has redesigned this midsize, five-passenger SUV, aiming at those who want something a bit fancier, but without going full luxury in terms of design and price tag — something between a Toyota RAV4 and a Audi Q5.

The Envision sits in the middle of the Buick SUV lineup, between the smaller Encore and larger Enclave. Among the highlights of the redesign are an improved infotainment system, a boost in the number of safety features included, and an updated engine.

I recently spent time in a 2021 Envision, and here is a full report.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

 

The Genesis name and reputation has been gaining steam in the auto industry over the past few years, starting with the introduction of its first luxury sedans. The upscale brand put out by Hyundai is quickly showing the competition how to get things done.

It was only a matter of time before Genesis put out SUVs. Enter their latest magnum opus, the GV80 midsize SUV — their new flagship vehicle that will no doubt put the competition even further on notice due to its sharp design and overall performance capabilities.

Attractive, powerful, and tech-savvy, it’s hard not to like what the GV80 offers. And few competitors offer as complete a package as you’ll find here.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

For a newer vehicle to succeed, it must check multiple boxes.

For the 2020 Volvo XC40, one of those boxes is filling the demand on the smaller end of the SUV scale, a segment for which demand has grown tremendously in the past handful of years.

The other key box it checks is that, like all Volvo offerings, it offers an extremely impressive amount of safety features to luxury car buyers.

But in a crowded category with plenty of excellent offerings from multiple leading brands, is it enough to stand out? Read on for a full review.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS

 

 

Volvo’s entry in the compact luxury SUV category, the XC60, is battling for buyers among the giants of the luxury world — from Acura and Audi to Benz and BMW — so the task it faces in finding an audience can be daunting.

The 2020 model maintains the look from the 2018 redesign, but the good news is this is still among the best-looking and top-performing vehicles in the class. 

Read on for my full take on how it measures up in the segment.

LOOKS
The 2020 Volvo XC60 features a unique and well-designed exterior for a luxury SUV, especially in the rear of the vehicle. Volvo doesn’t blend in with the crowd like so many competitors do.

Inside, the XC60 is extra comfy and well put-together. The brand isn’t the first nameplate most people think of when the term luxury is mentioned, but anyone who has sat in a Volvo in recent years knows that it should be top of mind.

Attractive driftwood touches highlight the front dashboard, and extremely cozy and warm Nappa Leather seating will support you even on longer rides. The XC60 makes you feel at home, like a luxury model should.

Second row seating is roomy compared to other options in the segment, and the driver and front passenger will be very comfortable.

Quality features available on the XC60 include a Panoramic Moonroof w/Power Sunshade, Keyless Entry w/ Hands Free Tailgate Opening, Rear Park Assist Camera, 4-Zone Automatic Climate Control, Heated Wiper blades with Integrated Washers, and heated rear and front seats.

Published in SUV / TRUCK REVIEWS
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