Monday, 08 August 2022
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Minivans are sort of a love-it-or-hate-it thing in the automotive world.

Many people might say they hate minivans, but a vocal minority are minivan lovers.

With the completely new 2022 Kia Carnival, a reinvention of the vehicle formerly known as the Kia Sedona, the Korean automaker is hoping to turn some of those haters into members of the minivan fan club, and create potential customers.

After some time tooling around in this family-friendly ride, I’m back with a full report on how the Carnival measures up, as it takes on the Chrysler Pacifica, Honda Odyssey, Toyota Sienna and Chrysler Voyager on the minivan battleground. 

Additional Info

  • Vehicle 2022 Kia Carnival 
  • Price as tested $38,775 (Starts around $32K)
  • Best feature Versatility, tech capabilities, cargo space
  • Rating 4.5 out of five stars
  • Who will want this vehicle? Minivan buyers who want the latest, greatest version of this often-maligned vehicle type
Posted On Wednesday, 21 July 2021 06:34 Written by
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If there’s one thing Chevy does not lack for, it’s SUVs.

From the tiny Trax to the massive Suburban, there’s a grand total of seven offerings in their SUV range, so they have something at literally every size and capability level.

One of the newer entries in that list brings the return of a familiar nameplate — the Trailblazer.

No, it’s not the same as the old TrailBlazer, which was a larger SUV from 2001 through 2008, which eventually morphed into the Traverse model.

More than a decade later, the name is back (minus the capital “B”), but this time as another compact SUV option. It slots in between the smaller Trax and larger Equinox in the Chevy lineup, and I recently got the chance to spend some time in a Trailblazer to see how it stands up in today’s crowded vehicle marketplace.

Additional Info

  • Vehicle 2021 Chevy Trailblazer 
  • Price as tested $30,730 (starts around $20K)  
  • Best feature Attractive design, strong tech features, affordability  
  • Rating 3.5 out of five stars   
  • Who will want this vehicle? Compact SUV buyers seeking a strong, affordable domestic option. 
Posted On Tuesday, 20 July 2021 03:30 Written by
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Even as all the buzz in the auto industry continues to focus on EVs and going all-electric, hybrids remain a key part of the eco-friendly solutions being offered to car buyers.

Take, for example, the Kia Niro, a compact SUV that’s been around a few years and fits a niche in the hybrid world where there are few competitors.

This tech-savvy model is larger than popular hybrids like the Toyota Prius and Hyundai Ioniq, but also smaller and more affordable than hybrid SUVs like the Toyota Venza and Ford Escape. For 2021, the Niro lineup boosts the quality and quantity of its tech and safety offerings, including inclusion of wireless connectivity for Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.

I recently spent time in a Kia Niro and I’m back with a full report.

Additional Info

  • Vehicle 2021 Kia Niro
  • Price as tested $34,190 (starts around $25K) 
  • Best feature Fuel mileage, design 
  • Rating 3.5 out of five stars 
  • Who will want this vehicle? Drivers looking for an affordable small hybrid SUV
Posted On Sunday, 11 July 2021 04:07 Written by
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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.

Additional Info

  • Vehicle 2021 Buick Envision
  • Price as tested $45,305 (Price starts around $32K)
  • Best feature Attractive design, strong tech and safety features, comfortable ride
  • Rating 4 out of five stars
  • Who will want this vehicle? SUV buyers looking for something that’s a step up from standard SUVs but not quite in the luxury realm
Posted On Monday, 05 July 2021 04:11 Written by
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When the word hybrid comes up, it’s generally associated with efficiency and strong fuel mileage, but rarely is paired with the word fun.

One vehicle trying to change that is the Lexus NX 300h, a luxurious compact crossover hybrid that has the rare combination of being a ride you can enjoy driving while also appreciating its looks and green credentials.

A brand new redesign is coming for 2022, but for now I tested the 2021 model of the NX 300h, and I’m back with a full report.

Additional Info

  • Vehicle Lexus NX 300h
  • Price as tested $48,745 (starts around $40K)
  • Best feature Sharp styling, safety features, fuel mileage, enjoyable drive for a hybrid
  • Rating 4 out of five stars 
  • Who will want this vehicle? Hybrid crossover buyers seeking a responsive, smooth and high-end ride
Posted On Wednesday, 30 June 2021 04:04 Written by
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