Honda CR-V a treat to drive in almost every way

The unresponsive transmission takes a great deal of the joy out of this otherwise practical, pleasurable small SUV

Honda CR-V a treat to drive in almost every wayAlthough I drive 50 to 60 new cars a year, I still own a 1976 BMW 2002, a ’76 Triumph TR6 and the family schlepper: a 2002 Honda CR-V. The first two cars are my toys, pampered and driven in nice weather, and usually for short distances. The Honda is the workhorse, and is used…

Power plant sets Mazda CX-5 apart from competition

No one wants surprises in this market. The practical, well-thought-out model will win the race every time. This fits the bill

Power plant sets Mazda CX-5 apart from competitionIn a market absolutely saturated with utes, sport utes, sport cutes, and full-size beauts, what can a manufacturer do to make its product stand out in the crowd? In a word, nothing. At least, nothing drastic. This segment of the auto market is not about game-changing innovations (despite carmakers’ boasts to the contrary), revolutionary design…

The 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe is a straightforward value

Mid-size SUV offers high standard equipment level, driver-friendliness and a high degree of usability

The 2019 Hyundai Santa Fe is a straightforward valueAlthough it sometimes seems that every other vehicle on the road is a Hyundai Santa Fe, this mid-size SUV from Korea is actually not even in the best-selling top 10. The best-selling SUVs in Canada are the likes of the Ford Escape, Honda CR-V and Toyota RAV4. According to the people who monitor these things,…

Buying used: 2011 Kia Sorento may not age well

It gets average grades for performance and features, but users have had a variety of problems

Buying used: 2011 Kia Sorento may not age wellKia had a landmark year in 2010. As well as dramatically increasing its sales and becoming a legitimate contender in the marketplace, it opened a manufacturing plant in the U.S. – West Point, Ga. The debuting model was the mid-size 2011 Sorento SUV. There are two engine choices: a 2.4-litre four cylinder and 3.5-litre V6,…

Honda Insight wants to be in charge of the driving experience

Driver input these days, it seems, is decreasing incrementally

Honda Insight wants to be in charge of the driving experienceIt all started with cruise control. It was, arguably, the first modern automotive convenience readily available to buyers that didn’t fundamentally involve the operation of the vehicle. When it became readily available – in the 1970s, initially in the RV industry – it was something of a sensation: a feature that allowed you to drive…

Fusion Energi puts some spark in the debate about hybrids

The 2019 model can be plugged in overnight and then travel up to 40 km on battery power

Fusion Energi puts some spark in the debate about hybridsThe federal government recently announced funding in this year’s budget for incentives of up to $5,000 for Canadian buyers of zero-emissions vehicles. That’s good, but why not extend the funding to hybrid cars? Given the current technology, a hybrid car makes much more sense than a fully electric one. And if the hybrid is a…

The 2019 Lincoln Continental offers upscale driving at its best

This spectacular-looking automobile drives like a sports coupe and even plows through snow with ease

The 2019 Lincoln Continental offers upscale driving at its bestFord announced a while ago that it would cease production of all its conventional passenger sedans starting in 2020. As well as being a potential game-changer for the company, this is also a huge mistake. Yes, people are buying SUVs and sport cutes in unprecedented numbers, but things change. And right now, Ford has never…

Buying a hybrid on the cheap, while you can

The Toyota Prius C is small and basic, but it's also relatively cheap. However, it just may disappear from the market shortly

Buying a hybrid on the cheap, while you canOne the problems with being environmentally responsible is that, for carmakers and consumers, it doesn’t come cheap. Electric and hybrid cars, for the most part, are more expensive than their internal combustion-propelled counterparts. Mitsubishi and Nissan, for example, are both actively immersed in electric/hybrid vehicle technology. They also sell affordable, non-hybrid econoboxes priced in the…

Why driving the 2019 Toyota Sienna minivan makes so much sense

The 2019 Toyota Sienna offers plenty of comfort and space, ample power, safety and good handling

Why driving the 2019 Toyota Sienna minivan makes so much senseOn average, I reckon I drive between 50 and 60 new cars a year. Everything from mainstream four-door family haulers, to high-powered sports cars, to ridiculously overpriced pickup trucks, to over-the-top luxury sedans. Extrapolate that over a 30-year career and you’ve got … well, never mind. I drive a lot of cars. Easily the questions…

Toyota C-HR is far too cute and painfully impractical

Any number of more reasonably-priced automobiles bring more to the table in terms of usability and practicality

Toyota C-HR is far too cute and painfully impracticalIn their never-ending quest to get maximum market share and give customers what they think they want, carmakers sometimes bring out a vehicle that – on paper – makes absolutely no sense. I’m thinking of “sport cute” models like the Nissan Juke, Honda HR-V, Hyundai Kona and Toyota C-HR. These vehicles don’t do any one…

Honda Accord Hybrid ticks all the boxes, from economy to comfort

The 2019 model has great safety features, plenty of space, good performance – and it’s fun to drive

Honda Accord Hybrid ticks all the boxes, from economy to comfortHonda’s 2019 Accord Hybrid is another example of the evolving gasoline/electric power vehicles that are changing the automotive scene for the better. It was a pleasure to drive, with plenty of power and roomy comfort inside. One of the surprising features I discovered in the Accord (and a few other test vehicles recently) is the…

Ford EcoSport gets the most out of a modest engine

Practicality and low fuel consumption make this SUV a good family choice

Ford EcoSport gets the most out of a modest engineIf you’re looking for a practical vehicle that has plenty of storage capacity, ample seating for four and is cheap on gas, the four-door Ford EcoSport may be the vehicle. There are four 2018 models offered: the S base, the SE, the SES and the Titanium, which I test-drove. The EcoSport also comes in front-wheel…

The 2019 Volkswagen Jetta is still a cut above competition

If you’re in the market for a compact four-door at a reasonable price with exceptional performance, this is a good bet

The 2019 Volkswagen Jetta is still a cut above competitionNext to the Golf, the Jetta is Volkswagen’s longest-running model. Debuting in 1979, it’s been a mainstay for the company and has proven to be more than just a Golf with a trunk. For 2019, it’s on the receiving end of a variety of changes and improvements. And it’s still offered in three variations: Comfortline,…

VW Passat GT is more than a family sedan

In every way, it’s a mainstream family sedan and as comfortable and civilized as anything in this corner of the market – and it’s sporty

VW Passat GT is more than a family sedanAside from a minor – and welcome – blip with the CC version, Volkswagen’s Passat is arguably the most North American-flavoured model the company makes. It’s the company’s biggest sedan (for the time being), has the largest engine, has the most nondescript styling in VW’s entire lineup and is built in Chattanooga, Tenn. The aforementioned…

Buying used: 2010 Hyundai Genesis sedan stands the test of time

It may have been Hyundai's first foray into luxury car territory, but the Genesis managed to make this car feel upscale without overdoing it

Buying used: 2010 Hyundai Genesis sedan stands the test of timeBy any measure, the Genesis was a significant step forward for the Korean carmaker Hyundai and a worthy contender in the upscale sedan market. It also became the company’s flagship model, supplanting the Azera. Worth noting is the fact that the Genesis was rear-wheel drive and was not built on any existing platform. This was…