Facelifted: Hey, Remember the Acura ILX

Who buys Acuras?

Somebody must, right? Honda keeps building them (or badging them: looking at you, CSX) so there must be a market, but who still buys almost-but-not-quite-luxury vehicles (outside of Buick stans, of course)?

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Downsized: Golf to Get Smaller Engine

The VW Golf really is the perfect car for most people. It’s a small, fun to drive hatchback that can accommodate 95% of driving needs. It looks good, it’s reliable and it’s affordable. It also offers two different variants that offer an increasing amount of power and fun for those looking for more.

However, taste tends to run toward larger vehicles. Jack up the suspension and add some plastic cladding and the Golf would probably find more buyers (it would also make it a T-Roc, so we’ll get to see how that sells.)

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Meet the Drivable Lego-Built Bugatti

We live in the ultimate age of do-it-yourself. Tutorials are plentiful, parts are easily accessible worldwide, and our existential malaise makes us more willing to participate in otherwise unadvisable activities.

Witness then, the Bugatti Chiron built mostly from Lego Technics (Technics are the next step up from your classic building blocks). With 13,500 hours of work, several months of planning and about a year of building, the 1.5-tonne model actually drives. F’realsies.

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Ford, GM, and the Future of the American Sedan

The current auto market hasn’t been kind to the sedan. Long the go-to for those requiring a spacious ride, the four-door car has been pushed aside in our anxious, post-911 world as drivers seek to mask their existential securities behind the wheel of a high-riding crossover or SUV.

There are a few other factors edging sedans out of the buyer’s eyes: small vehicles have gotten much better at maximizing interior space while larger vehicles have additional seating to help accommodate more people when necessary. Coupled with the advancements in engineering, and the near-parity on gas mileage between large and small vehicles, and buyers are splitting their needs to the extremes, leaving the Goldilock’s just-right of sedans by the wayside.

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Alfa Plan CUV

Alfa Romeo’s roll out to the North American market has been a slow process. Their current offerings, the Giulia sedan and Stelvio SUV, have been lauded by critics but aren’t exactly racing of dealer lots.

Fighting a historical reputation for poor reliability, Alfa has faced an uphill battle. Being under Fiat-Chrysler’s struggling banner hasn’t helped them make a huge impact. Despite their racing pedigree, it may be that their sexy Italian swagger doesn’t fit into a marketplace that trips over itself for bigger and dumber trucks.

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Hyundai to Electrify N

Like BMW has M and Lexus has F, so, too, Hyundai has N: a tuning house cranking out high-performance versions of their volume sellers.

This fall sees the release of the i30 N and Veloster N, followed by the i30 Fastback N. Each offers a sizeable power increase over the standard model, and updates the suspension, braking and handling to accommodate the greater output.

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Golf R Gets Colorful

Volkswagen is expanding the palette for their top-end Golf by introducing 40 custom color options. Known as the Volkswagen Spectrum Program, the options will be available for the forthcoming 2019 Golf R.

Though the Spectrum Program introduces some new hues to the VW lineup, Volkswagen also looked to their past for points of reference. From the MkIII Sirocco’s Viper Green Metallic to the Ginster Yellow of the 1997 GTI Driver’s Edition, these options tie the nameplates storied history with their most current engineering prowess.

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