The 2014 Hyundai Santa Fe, even though it is still basically the same as the 2013 model, took the Consumer Reports Award for Best Mid-Sized SUV. Having to compete with strong names like the Ford Explorer, Nissan Pathfinder and Honda Pilot, this is quite an achievement for the Santa Fe. Offering up the most powerful V6 engine in the class, seven passenger seating as an option, and the choice of either front or all-wheel drive it’s pretty easy to see why the Santa Fe won the Consumer Reports award for this class.
To set the 2014 model apart from the 2013, Hyundai equipped the Santa Fe with a Blind Spot Detection System, rear parking assistance, and new HID headlights and LED taillights. All these add ons give the newer model quite a bit more safety features to brag to their non-award winning competitors.
In May of last year, Car and Driver published a list of 25 cars they deemed worth waiting for which were due to be released between 2014 and 2017. This list includes such beauties as the 2014 BMW M4 and 2014 Alfa Romeo 4C as well as some staples such as the 2014 Ford Mustang and 2016 Chevrolet Camaro. It is a very impressive list that needs a quick revisit of each to allow some familiarity and let the public see what they have to look forward to along with what has already been released. Continue reading
Power freaks, fear not. Aston Martin’s partnership with Mercedes-AMG to put out a new V8 engine does not doom the AM11 V12 that we’ve all grown to know and love. The big and little engines will remain as options to go along side their other V8 offering with the Vantage.
VH architecture has powered the engines for over a decade. This latest partnership is a continued sign of expansion, particularly in American east coast markets and parts of Asia. With stores opening up in New Jersey and other areas, the exotic car company is poised to grow beyond its exotic nameplate to compete with the high-end luxury brands. They even have one coming out that’s under $100,000.
Mercedes-Benz has long been known as one of the most recognizable and trusted names in luxury vehicles often showing off the three-point star with style, class, elegance and sophistication only matched by the very best. In recent years, Mercedes-Benz chose to enter the competition that normally is reserved for the big bruisers of the world with its own take on what an SUV should be. Ever since the first offering a new class of vehicles was born; the Luxury SUV class and has since had other enter the ring to throw down with the M-Class, but as usual the M-Class continues to stand tall above its competitors.
Showing up for 2014 with some great hardware awarded from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) as a Top Safety Pick Plus in the Luxury SUV class, this vehicle offers much more than just luxurious stylings but also a long list of safety features to keep all occupants safe in case the worst should happen while inside the vehicle. Offering not only the safety features, but also a great lineup of models that includes a diesel engine and an AMG version the M-Class has an offering that almost anyone looking for a great luxury SUV will enjoy including the ability to go off road when called upon to do so, a feature often left out of others in this class.
Ever since smaller cars have gained a huge popularity throughout the country car buyers have clamored for more added to even the small cars. Rather than a basic box on wheels with a hamster powered engine underneath the public has demanded more premium features, versatility, and of course great fuel efficiency. The engineers and designers at Ford listened intently and came up with the 2014 Ford Focus which is loaded to gills with great features, offers a ton of space inside especially for a small car, and shows up with the versatility to be had as either a four-door sedan or a five-door hatchback.
Standing up strong to the normal competition in this class as such longstanding names as the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla the Focus comes in hot with a great value and package many car buyers will enjoy. Even though the Focus remains basically the same for 2014 as it was for 2013 the car still receives a few added features which show up in the Sport Appearance Package of the Se trim with sport cloth seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob and a rear spoiler.
As the largest in the Compact- Crossover Class, the Chevrolet Equinox actually has some experts stymied as to what to do with the vehicle. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) saw fit to put it in the mid-sized SUV class and award it with a Top Safety Pick Plus Award for that class. The Equinox however, is a bit small for the mid-sized SUV class and instead belongs in a category with the Honda CR-V, Ford Escape, and Toyota RAV4.
Giving up some cargo space in favor of passenger comfort the Equinox when powered by the V6 engine is able to tow up to 3,500 pounds, enough to make this a great choice to bring along the weekend toys or head to the hardware store and buy what is needed for a small project in the yard. Offering a fairly standard ride with decent road control and adequate steering the overall feel of the ride in this SUV is pretty much what is expected. The one place the ride is better than the competition is in quietness of the cabin. The Equinox offers such a quiet ride the occupants feel like they are riding in a much more upscale vehicle than a simple SUV.