Automotive Blog


How much should I tow with my crossover SUV?

 

2020 Volkagen Atlas Cross SportJust because you can tow 5,000 pounds doesn’t mean you should. Many popular three-row crossover SUVs such as the Kia Telluride and Volkswagen Atlas have maximum tow ratings set by their manufacturers of 5,000 pounds, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you should hook up 5,000 pounds of boat and trailer and drive away. It’s more...

Wash me now: What's the best type of car wash?

 

Touch car washNeed to give the car a wash? Deliberating between doing it yourself or going to a professional car wash? If you don't have the time, desire, or supplies to clean your car at home, then it's time to hit the pros. There are three types of places you can go to get your car washed, all with differing degrees of effectiveness. Options include a quick...

Car shopping: Practice patience when considering your trade in

 

Car shoppingNew car sales have plummeted about 50% since the coronavirus pandemic took hold in the U.S., and used car values have dropped as well. With great incentives on new cars, such as 0% financing for 72 months, and a slew of off-lease and retiring fleet vehicles, there is an overwhelming supply of used cars on dealer lots and at auction houses. This...

How to clean your car's interior like a pro

 

How to clean your car's interior like a proA clean car is a happy car. Your car deserves to be happy. For some it’s therapeutic (raises hand) and for others it’s a necessary evil. Whichever end of the spectrum you fall on, cleaning the inside of your car is necessary maintenance that isn’t difficult to do. The hardest part is deciding to do it. Keeping the interior of...

What automaker charges the most for destination charges?

 

2019 Kenworth Toyota T680 FCET class 8 semi-trailer truckDestination charges on a new car are one of life’s pain points. Like mowing the lawn, vacuuming, or pulling hair out of the drain, the costs associated with shipping a car from the factory are unavoidable—the bill comes due whether you like it or not. But some automakers charge more than others. Why? The added cost for destination and...

What's a Monroney window sticker for, and what does it do?

 

2002 Jeep Grand Cherokee window sticker optionsWhat is the one thing you’ll find on every showroom floor aside from four wheels and the fear of a bum deal? The window sticker. Also known as the Monroney label, the window sticker is a universal data sheet mandated on all new passenger vehicles 10,000 pounds or less sold in the U.S. It’s meant to keep shoppers from getting swindled...

Seven ways to tell if a used car has flood damage

 

Nashville flood carMany car shoppers don’t realize just how much damage floodwaters do to a vehicle. That represents a problem—not just to the owner of a car or truck that falls victim to a catastrophic flood, but to prospective buyers unaware of the vehicle’s history. The risk of flooded vehicles on the market affects everyone looking for a used...

Car hacks: how an old iPhone and in-car Wi-Fi gave me free navigation

 

Chevrolet Bolt EV with Apple CarPlayCar hacks are little ways to make your time in a car easier, quicker, smarter, or more convenient. Auto journalists have a few of their own, but we learn a lot of them from readers. Here's one from Jay Lucas. What follows are his words, lightly edited by The Car Connection for clarity and style. I recently replaced my wife's old iPhone 5 with an...

GM: Sticking Rudolf's nose on your car hurts fuel economy

 

GMC Terrain AntlersRudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer may be perfectly suited to guiding sleighs in inclement weather, but if you played Santa: The Home Game this year, the chances are the little guy took some of the edge off of your fuel economy. That’s according to GM, which tested a GMC Terrain in a wind tunnel to gauge the effects of antlers and a reindeer...

PSA: Please don't put your feet up on the dashboard

 

Audra Tatum's car accident, via Audra TatumThe warning given by Audra Tatum from Walker County, Georgia is simple: Don't put your feet up on the dashboard of your car. The reason? It's beyond dangerous. Tatum and her husband were in a car crash two years ago as they were on their way to pick up their children. Everyone involved walked away, except Audra. Despite previous warnings from her...

What are the different levels of self-driving cars?

 

Volvo Launches Latest Autonomous Cars Pilot In SwedenIn many ways self-driving cars are an eventuality and a reality. As automakers approach full autonomy toward the end of this decade, several new cars now boast self-driving features that inch toward the goal of driver-less cars soon. Many of these features can be grouped together in a uniform set of self-driving "levels," which were defined by the...

Now's the time to buy winter tires

 

2017 Dodge Challenger GT, Media drive, Portland, Maine, January 2017Check that date. Yes, it's the beginning of February and we're telling you that you should buy winter tires now, even though we're already halfway through the snowy season. If you've been contemplating winter tires for your car, this may very well be the best time to take advantage of clearance sales as tire retailers like Tire Rack are looking to...

Mid-size sedans scrapping vanilla in favor of sport

 

2017 Ford Fusion SportThe family sedan is in the midst of a quiet revolution. What was once indisputably the type of car most likely to be found in the average American garage has been displaced by crossovers and SUVs that channel a little Marlboro Man with room for the kids and their gear (plus maybe the neighbors' kids). Mid-size sedans like the Toyota Camry, Honda...

How to be sure you're buying an IIHS Top Safety Pick+ car

 

2017 Audi A4 in IIHS crash testingYou've seen the TV spots. You've read the ads. You've visited the automaker's website. That new car you want is very safe, they proclaim. It has received top marks from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety—the Top Safety Pick+ award. But not every car on the dealer's lot is necessarily a Top Safety Pick+ recipient, even if it looks...

Here's what a destination charge means and how it's calculated

 

2017 Volvo V60Picture this: You're sitting at home one night watching TV or flipping through a magazine when you see an ad for a shiny new sports car whipping through a curvy canyon highway—or maybe it's a rugged pickup kicking up a cloud of dust in search of adventure. The announcer screams at you, "$29,995!" You think to yourself—wow, that's a lot...


2023 Toyota 4Runner SUV celebrates its 40th with some stripes

 

2023 Toyota 4Runner 40th AnniversaryToyota celebrates the 40th anniversary of the 4Runner SUV not with a new model, but with some yellow, orange, and red body graphics. The special edition on the aging SUV will be limited to 4,040 units for the U.S. market, the automaker announced Tuesday. The 2023 Toyota 4Runner mostly carries on in the same manner as the 2022 4Runner, which hasn't...

Toyota offers a new look on 2023 Tundra, 2023 Tacoma SR5 grades

 

2023 Toyota TacomaThe 2023 Toyota Tacoma will carry over for at least one more year. That's the big takeaway from Toyota's announcement last week of a new SX cosmetic package on SR5 grades on both the bestselling mid-size pickup truck and its bigger brother, the 2023 Toyota Tundra that was redesigned for 2022. The SX Package burnishes the SR5 grade with black trim...

2023 Nissan Z, Cadillac Lyriq headline this week's new car news and reviews

 

2023 Nissan Z PerformanceThe past and the future collide this week with our coverage of excellent sports coupes and the latest 2023 redesigned and electric models. The new normal is pretty exciting. Here's what else moved us. 2023 Nissan Z review The rear-wheel-drive coupe with a standard 6-speed manual honors the past while adapting to the present with an eye-catching...

2022 Volvo XC40 Recharge vs 2022 Volvo C40 Recharge: Compare Electric Cars

 

2022 Volvo C40 RechargeVolvo’s decisive march toward offering only electric vehicles by 2030 has begun as indecisively as eggs hatching in a nest. Volvo and Polestar sell three new related electric birdies, the Volvo XC40 Recharge, C40 Recharge, and Polestar 2. The triplets share an electric vehicle platform, propulsion system, and battery pack. But aren’t...

Hyundai Ioniq 5, Kia EV6 electric cars recalled for rollaway risk

 

2022 Kia EV6, red, and 2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5Hyundai and Kia are recalling their first mass-produced electric cars for the U.S. due to an increased rollaway risk. A software error can cause the parking mechanism to disengage, allowing the vehicle to roll away on uneven ground, the NHTSA disclosed this week. The recall encompasses 10,729 Hyundai Ioniq 5 and 9,014 Kia EV6 models from the 2022...

Traffic fatalities in 2021 increased by largest rate in history

 

Toyota vehicles used in IIHS crash testingThe number of people killed in car crashes in the U.S. increased by 10.5% from 2020 to 2021, representing the largest percentage increase in the history of crash fatality data keeping, the NHTSA disclosed in preliminary estimates on Tuesday. The NHTSA estimates 42,915 people died in motor vehicle crashes in 2021, the most since 2005. In 2020...

2023 Genesis GV60 EV costs $10,000 more than related Hyundai Ioniq 5

 

2023 Genesis GV60The 2023 Genesis GV60 electric car costs $59,980, including a $1,090 destination charge, the luxury automaker announced Tuesday, the same day it went on sale. Initially, sales of the battery electric crossover will be limited to California, Connecticut, New Jersey, and New York, but Genesis promises to expand availability later in the year for its...

2023 Subaru Legacy sedan updated with fresh face, improved tech

 

2023 Subaru LegacyThe 2023 Subaru Legacy rolls into the new model year with a fresh face, updated safety features, and a larger single-unit touchscreen, the automaker announced last week. Modesty defines the mid-cycle refresh of the mid-size sedan as Subaru tries to keep pace with the 2023 Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, and Hyundai Sonata. Subaru expands the grille...

2022 Chevrolet Silverado, 2023 Toyota Venza top this week's new car reviews

 

2022 Chevrolet SilveradoThe 2023 model year rolls out from automakers toward dealerships in earnest, but supply remains constrained even as automakers prep their latest models with the newest technology. We spanned both model years this week, finally getting in an updated 2022 Chevrolet Silverado (not the carryover 2022 Silverado LTD) with a much needed refresh inside...

Hyundai Sonata recalled again for fuel leak risk

 

2014 Hyundai SonataHyundai is recalling certain 2013-2014 Sonata mid-size sedans for a potential fuel hose leak that can increase the risk of a fire, the NHTSA disclosed this week. The 2013-2014 Sonata and 2013-2014 Kia Optima had previously been recalled for a fuel hose that can crack prematurely and leak fuel. The tape and zip-tie remedy for those earlier recalls...

Mercedes issues sweeping recall, urges owners to stop driving

 

2012 Mercedes-Benz ML350 BlueTecMercedes-Benz is urging customers of certain older crossovers to stop driving due a to corroded brake booster that could cause the brakes to fail, the automaker announced Thursday. The request and corresponding recall applies to 292,287 ML-, GL-, and R-Class crossovers and SUVs from the 2006-2012 model years. Recalls are common, but urging...

2022 Subaru Forester, Toyota Corolla Cross earn Top Safety Pick+ nods

 

2022 Subaru Forester WildernessThe 2022 Subaru Forester joins the 2022 Toyota Corolla Cross and 2022 Toyota RAV4 Prime as the latest crossovers to earn a Top Safety Pick+ award from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the insurance-industry funded nonprofit announced Thursday. The refreshed Forester once again aced the toughest safety and crash-test criteria in the...

2022 Top Safety Pick awards: Volvo, Genesis ace IIHS tests

 

IIHS Top Safety Pick testingFor the 2022 model year, more automakers built their cars to better withstand and avoid crashes, according to the latest ratings announced Thursday by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. More than 70 models earned a 2022 Top Safety Pick+ designation, which is considered the most rigorous independent safety rating in the automotive...

2023 Toyota Highlander subs out V-6 for new turbo-4

 

2023 Toyota HighlanderThe 2023 Toyota Highlander SUV arrives with a smaller but more potent engine, Toyota announced Wednesday. Top trims also come with more standard features and screens. All gas versions of the three-row SUV will be powered by a 2.4-liter turbo-4 engine instead of the outgoing 3.5-liter V-6. The forced induction helps make 265 hp and 309 lb-ft of...

2023 Honda Odyssey: Price increases to $38,635, new Sport trim revs up minivan

 

2023 Honda Odyssey SportThe 2023 Honda Odyssey minivan will cost at least $700 more than the 2022 model, but it will include two years or 24,000 miles of factory scheduled maintenance called Honda Service Pass, Honda announced Tuesday. A new Sport trim shakes up the lineup as well. The base LX model will no longer be offered in 2023. Instead, the EX starts the Odyssey at...


2023 Nissan Pathfinder SUV levels up with off-road Rock Creek grade

 

2023 Nissan Pathfinder Rock CreekNissan on Tuesday announced the return of its rugged Rock Creek grade to the Nissan Pathfinder three-row SUV. Redesigned for 2022, the SUV embraces more off-road capability and a more outdoorsy look with the 2023 Pathfinder Rock Creek trim. With its shift last year from a CVT to a 9-speed automatic transmission, the Pathfinder boasted better...

2023 Nissan Leaf sprouts a new look and pared down lineup

 

2023 Nissan LeafThe 2023 Nissan Leaf blooms into another model year, with a freshened face but a model line pared down to just two trims from five last year, Nissan announced Tuesday in advance of the New York International Auto Show. The changes are mostly cosmetic, with a blacked-out front fascia instead of the chrome wings of its predecessor. Nissan...

Best of the 2020 Chicago Auto Show: TCC picks the posh and practical

 

2020 Chicago Auto ShowThe 2020 Chicago Auto Show kicked off auto show season and gave car shoppers a preview of what they can expect on dealer lots later this year. The new cars shown off on Thursday's media day ranged from pure performance to posh and practical. We'll stick with the latter, even though the $750,000 Liquid Carbon limited edition 2020 Ford GT is auto...

2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid is a 54-mpg green-tech highway machine

 

2020 Hyundai SonataIf you drive a lot on the highway and think mileage really matters, yet you’re still not ready to turn in your gas card for a charging-network app, the 2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid might prove the perfect choice when it arrives in a few months. With the Sonata Hybrid’s debut at the 2020 Chicago Auto Show on Thursday, Hyundai announced a...

Coming for 2021: Small crossovers and EVs star at LA Auto Show

 

2019 LA Auto Show HighlightsIf cars had astrological years, 2020 will be the year of the small crossover. That's our takeaway from the unofficial start of the new car year—the 2019 Los Angeles Auto Show, which runs through December 1, where precocious 2021 vehicles strut their stuff on the silver floor, and those 2020 models late in the womb finally emerge into the hot...

2020 Mazda CX-30 makes room in small crossover SUV lineup

 

2020 Mazda CX-30, 2019 LA Auto ShowThe 2020 Mazda CX-30 that arrived in the U.S. on Wednesday at the 2019 Los Angeles Auto Show raises big questions about small crossovers in the Mazda lineup. It would seem as if the larger CX-30 would replace the CX-3 subcompact crossover, but instead it slots between the CX-3 and CX-5, Mazda spokesman Drew Carey told us on the show floor. The new...

2021 Toyota RAV4 plug-in hybrid revealed: Shocking power from crossover SUV

 

2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime, 2019 LA Auto ShowToyota on Tuesday confirmed a bit of a shocker, pun intended. The automaker confirmed details for its 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime plug-in hybrid crossover, due next year, which adds a bigger hybrid battery to its hybrid powertrain that can power the crossover up to 39 miles on electric power alone. The crossover will make 302 combined horsepower and...

Coming to America: Performance cars, rugged SUVs, and plug-ins debut in Frankfurt

 

New Audi RS 7 SportbackWhile the Frankfurt Motor Show in Germany might seem like a far cry from the States, many of the performance, luxury, and electric vehicles launched there will be heading over to the U.S. in the coming months. Here’s a look at what’s coming to America. 2020 Audi RS 6 Avant The 2020 RS 6 Avant mid-size sport wagon has a mild-hybrid...

The 13 most important cars of the 2019 New York auto show

 

2020 Toyota Highlander, 2019 New York International Auto ShowFrom three-row crossover SUVs to shapely mid-size sedans, the 2019 New York International Auto Show had an important new-car introduction for just about every kind of buyer Wednesday. The show opens to the public Friday and highlights include the 34-mpg 2020 Toyota Highlander Hybrid, the shapely 2020 Cadillac CT5 sedan, the luxo-laden 2020 Lincoln...

The 8 most exciting new cars at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show

 

2020 Toytota RAV4 TRD Off-Road, 2019 Chicago Auto ShowThe world's automakers gathered under the bright lights at the 2019 Chicago Auto Show on Thursday to show off some off their latest and greatest new cars, trucks, and SUVs. Though there weren't many major debuts, this year's show is notable in that nearly all of the flashy new cars unwrapped in Chicago will be in dealers by the end of the year...

2020 Toyota Supra: Legendary two-seat sport coupe returns, with a European twist

 

2020 Toyota Supra, 2019 Detroit auto showLaunching a new model name costs many millions of dollars, which is why automakers often bring back old names or radically alter the vehicles sold under an existing name. That explains why Toyota's new two-seat sport coupe is called Supra, reviving a name last used in 1998. The new 2020 Toyota Supra has an inline-6 engine, just like the old one...

Crossover SUV of all trades: 2020 Ford Explorer hybrid, performance-oriented ST revealed

 

2020 Ford Explorer, 2019 Detroit auto showIllustrating its commitment to SUVs and crossovers at the 2019 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Ford on Monday took the wraps off of two more versions of its 2020 Explorer: the thriftier Explorer hybrid and the sportier Explorer ST. The eco-friendly and performance-oriented Explorers will act like bookends for the mainstream...

The 7 most important cars at the 2018 LA Auto Show

 

2020 Jeep Gladiator, 2018 LA Auto ShowAutomakers took to the Los Angeles Convention Center this week with a host of new SUVs, sports cars, sedans, and pickup trucks to show off to the public. Three new models revive long-retired names for pickup trucks and SUVs aimed at hauling people and all their gear. Another is the long-awaited update of an iconic German sports car. And one's a...

2020 Kia Soul revealed: The box is back

 

2020 Kia Soul, 2018 LA Auto ShowThe quirky 2020 Kia Soul crossover arrived with a new look at the 2018 LA Auto Show Wednesday. This time around, the battery-electric Soul EV gained a major update, too. Shoppers who adore the Soul's boxy looks won't be disappointed. The 2020 Soul retains the same toaster oven shape as its predecessor, but the look is arguably more cohesive. Slim...

2020 Toyota Corolla Hybrid: 50-mpg hybrid tech for a new normal

 

2020 Toyota Corolla, 2018 LA Auto ShowThe Toyota Corolla has historically flaunted its frugal credentials. In a sign of changing times, the new 2020 Toyota Corolla Hybrid is angling for a lot more eco cred. For the first time, it packs something very noteworthy: Toyota’s hybrid system, and mileage that’s surprisingly close to the Prius. Toyota claims that the Corolla...

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