Buying used: Drive the 2011 Camaro with enthusiasm

Conveys muscularity and a bad boy persona, with a dash of nostalgia thrown in

Buying used: Drive the 2011 Camaro with enthusiasmIntroduced in 2009 and manufactured in Oshawa Ont., the fifth-generation Chevrolet Camaro banked heavily on baby-boomer nostalgia. And aside from the fact that it delivered better fuel economy than its predecessors, had better handling and braking, and was more environmentally correct, the driving experience was much the same. This generation of the Camaro was based…

Buying used: 2011 Mercedes E-Class has plenty to love

The E-class was one of the prettiest cars on the road and emulated by other manufacturers

Buying used: 2011 Mercedes E-Class has plenty to loveAvailable as a four-door sedan, estate wagon, convertible or two-door coupe, Mercedes-Benz’s E-class was well into its fourth generation by 2011 and still represented the heart of the company’s lineup. Not as pricey or exclusive as the S-class, it was a cut above the C-class stable. It was also one of the prettiest cars on…

2011 Ford Fusion a well-appointed, moderately upscale sedan

This vintage Fusion featured a tastefully revised interior, with available leather upholstery

2011 Ford Fusion a well-appointed, moderately upscale sedanIn 2011, the Ford Fusion came out with a 2.5-litre four-cylinder engine, plus a choice of two V6s and a hybrid. Ford introduced a six-speed transmission the previous year and there was an all-wheel-drive version, so they were covering all the bases. The all-wheel-drive version was kind of intriguing. It came with the largest engine…

Buying used: 2011 Mazda CX-7 has held up well

It featured some great equipment: 17-inch alloy wheels, AC, heated mirrors, privacy glass and more

Buying used: 2011 Mazda CX-7 has held up wellAvailable with front-drive or all-wheel-drive, Mazda’s CX-7 continued on as a steady if unspectacular performer for the company in 2011. This vintage of the CX-7 was essentially a carryover from 2010. While the CX-7 SUV didn’t share its platform with any Ford products, it featured an interesting assortment of components from other Mazda products –…

Buying use: 2011 Golf GTI offers exceptional handling

The GTI is more than enough for most drivers

Buying use: 2011 Golf GTI offers exceptional handlingEssentially unchanged from 2010 to 2011, this generation of the Volkswagen Golf GTI model actually debuted in the fall of 2006. In the 2011 version of this hatchback, power is ably provided by a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine that develops 200 horsepower and 207 foot-pounds of torque. Transmission choices are a six-speed manual or a…

Buying used: The 2011 Honda Pilot has stood the test of time

Priced from about the $10,000 range right up to the low $20,000s

Buying used: The 2011 Honda Pilot has stood the test of timeLike its upscale brethren – the Acura MDX – the 2011 edition of the Honda Pilot was a candidate for one of the homeliest models in the SUV market. Offered in four trim levels, it bore a strong resemblance to the Ridgeline pickup and featured a chunky body style with one of the least appealing…

Buying used: 2011 Lexus GX 460 still top of the class

Plenty of power, almost completely silent and no worse on gas than most of the competition

Buying used: 2011 Lexus GX 460 still top of the classKissing cousin to the 4Runner, the Lexus GX 460 is the upscale version of Toyota’s popular SUV. It has a body-on-frame design and more stuff and a higher price tag, but features the same basic body style, wheelbase, seating capacity and driving experience. In 2011, it was powered by a 4.6-litre V8 engine that delivered…

The 2011 Kia Soul is both cute and practical

The Soul surprised with its reserve power, nimbleness and, in particular, its lack of rattles, looseness or mysterious noises

The 2011 Kia Soul is both cute and practicalThe Kia Soul was introduced to the North American market in 2010. Based on the Rio platform, it was one of the new breed of stubby compact urban crossover wagons, such as the Nissan Cube, Scion xB, Honda Element, Ford Flex and so on. When it hit the market, Kia was also targeting the Dodge…

Buying used: 2011 Mazda CX-7 stands the test of time

The CX-7 was a cut above competitors, but it had less cargo space and was not available with a V6 engine or manual transmission

Buying used: 2011 Mazda CX-7 stands the test of timeAvailable with front-wheel or all-wheel drive, the Mazda CX-7 got a bit of a facelift in 2011, continuing as a steady, if not spectacular, performer for the company. This vintage of the mid-size SUV is essentially a carryover from 2010. While the CX-7 didn’t share its platform with any Ford products, it featured an interesting…

Buying used: 2011 Mustang convertible offers top-down fun

Once the top is down, you understand. As well as improving all-round visibility, it gives this car a whole new dimension in driveability

Buying used: 2011 Mustang convertible offers top-down funWhen Ford introduced its Mustang convertible in 1964, it was powered by an optional 260-cubic-inch (4.3-litre) cast-iron V8 engine that developed just over 160 horsepower. It was later bumped up to 289 cubic inches and more, and Ford went on to sell over a million of the first-generation Mustang in its first year of production.…

Buying used: 2011 Infiniti M sedans have plenty of jump

What set this breed of Infiniti apart were the things that pampered the driver and occupants

Buying used: 2011 Infiniti M sedans have plenty of jumpRestyled and re-engineered for 2011, Infiniti’s M sedan was offered as an M37 or M56, and was available with either rear-wheel or all-wheel drive. There were two engine choices: a 3.7-litre V6 and 5.6-litre V8. The latter power plant belted out a hefty 420 horsepower, which was up 95 horsepower from the previous model and…

Buying used: Golf GTI offers exceptional handling

Few competitors could keep up when things got interesting and the GTI was more than enough for most drivers

Buying used: Golf GTI offers exceptional handlingEssentially unchanged from 2010 to 2011, this generation of the Volkswagen Golf GTI actually debuted in the fall of 2006. Power was ably provided by a turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder engine that developed 200 horsepower and 207 foot-pounds of torque. Premium gas was required. Transmission choices were either a six-speed manual or a six-speed automatic with…

Buying used: six-cylinder 2011 Chevrolet Equinox a better bet

Consumer Reports gave the V6 version an average used car prediction, while the four-cylinder models are worse than average

Buying used: six-cylinder 2011 Chevrolet Equinox a better betThe Chevrolet Equinox was the first model out of the gate after General Motors’ corporate shuffle in 2009. Made in Ingersoll, Ont., it replaced the Suzuki-built Tracker and was essentially a carryover for GM in 2011. It could be had with two engine choices: GM’s ubiquitous 2.4-litre Ecotec four-cylinder or a 3.0-litre V6. A six-speed…

Buying used: 2011 Ford Explorer a people mover with frills

This Explorer was aimed more at soccer moms than off-road rock-hoppers, and was still the quintessential suburban grocery-getter

Buying used: 2011 Ford Explorer a people mover with frillsDebuting in mid-2010, the 2011 Ford Explorer signalled a new direction for Ford’s most popular SUV. From here on in, fuel economy would trump performance. Power was delivered by either a Triton V6 that displaced 3.5 litres and developed 290 horsepower, or a 2.0-litre turbocharged Eco-Boost four-cylinder engine that came later in the model year.…

Buying used: 2011 CR-Z hybrid has zip and economy

According to Honda, drivers aged 35 or under and sports car buffs were the primary target, with hybrid customers coming second

Buying used: 2011 CR-Z hybrid has zip and economyIntroduced in late 2010, the Honda CR-Z hybrid bore more than a passing resemblance to one of the company’s most beloved models: the CRX. This was no coincidence. The pint-sized, Civic-derived CRX hatchback was a favourite with tuners and enthusiasts, and many lament its passing in the early 1990s. But the CR-Z was a different…