Commuter Cars

Opel Ampera Drivers May Get ‘Gasoline Generator Mode’ To Preserve Batteries

Posted in auto industry, Car Buying, Car Tech, Cars, Chevrolet, Commuter Cars, Electric Cars, New Cars by Kurt Ernst | December 8th, 2010 | Leave a Reply |

2011 Chevy Volt

When Mike and I were driving the Chevy Volt from NYC to Detroit, we got to spend a significant amount of time with the engineer’s behind the development of the Volt. One of the questions we asked was, “what are the differences between the Chevy Volt and the EU-Market Opel Ampera?” Aside from cosmetic and EU safety regulation changes, the biggest difference was described as a selector switch, which would allow Ampera drivers to manually change between gasoline generator power and battery power.

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Acura Prices TSX Sport Wagon

Posted in Acura, Car Buying, Commuter Cars, Favorite Cars, Honda, New Cars by Kurt Ernst | December 8th, 2010 | 3 Responses |

2011 Acura TSX Sport Wagon

We here at RideLust have a bizarre attraction to wagons. Mike has one as a daily driver, and although I’m in between wagons right now, I’ve owned more than my share. They’re comfortable, give you plenty of room for car guy stuff (try fitting four mounted wheels and tires in a Mustang) and they fly under the radar, both literally and figuratively. I don’t have hard data to back up this assumption, but I’m thinking that wagon drivers get popped for speeding a whole lot less than sport sedan drivers. Even if a wagon is fast (like Mike’s Magnum SRT-8 or the Audi S4 Avant), cops just don’t give them a second glance.

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2011 Chevrolet Cruze LTZ: RideLust Review

Posted in Car Buying, Car Reviews, Cars, Chevrolet, Commuter Cars, Compact Cars, Domestic Review, Featured, General, New Cars, Promoted, RideLust Review by Kurt Ernst | December 8th, 2010 | 2 Responses |

2011 Chevy Cruze LTZ

Thumbs Up: Big content, small price, great build quality

Thumbs Down: Turbo engine is all midrange, no bottom or top end

Buy This Car If: You want an American alternative to a Honda Civic or a VW Jetta

In 1985, General Motors announced the formation of a new division, called Saturn. Saturn’s mission was to go head to head with the best compacts Japan had to offer, then beat them on content, build quality, customer service and price. I’m not sure that the Saturn Corporation ever lived up to it’s potential, but General Motors has finally produced a car that lives up to the Saturn ideals. That car is the Chevy Cruze, and it’s the first entry level sedan from Chevrolet that’s ready, willing and (more than) able to beat the Japanese at their own game.

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Save The Asterisks, Buy A Hyundai Elantra

Posted in Car Buying, Cars, Commuter Cars, Compact Cars, Fuel-efficient, Funny, Hyundai, Videos by Kurt Ernst | December 7th, 2010 | 1 Response |

You’ve got to love car companies with a sense of humor. Hyundai, eager to let consumers know that all Elantra models are EPA rated at a fuel economy of 40 miles per gallon highway, opted for a creative and humorous way to deliver the message. The ad is also good for some beauty shots of the new Elantra, which looks to be another stunning car design from Hyundai. Ultimately, it pokes fun at the new Chevy Cruze, which only achieves 40 MPG fuel economy in the Cruze Eco version. Other versions of the Cruze still manage 36 MPG on the highway, so it really isn’t the big deal that Hyundai makes it out to be.

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Toyota Recalls 378,000 Prius Models

Posted in auto industry, Cars, Commuter Cars, Hybrid, Newsworthy, Recalls, Safety, Toyota by Kurt Ernst | November 30th, 2010 | 1 Response |

2005 Toyota Prius

If you drive a 2004 to 2007 model year Toyota Prius, expect to get a recall notice in the very near future. Toyota is recalling some 378,000 Prius models, to fix a potentially faulty coolant pump. The design of the original electric coolant pump allows air bubbles to enter the cooling system, which could result in engine overheating and trigger the reduced power “limp home” mode. Toyota has not reported any accidents or injuries relating to the coolant pump issue, but is issuing a worldwide recall to address the issue.

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2011 Subaru Tribeca Touring: RideLust Review

Posted in Car Buying, Car Reviews, Cars, Commuter Cars, Cross Over Vehicle, General, Import Review, RideLust Review, Subaru by Kurt Ernst | November 30th, 2010 | 2 Responses |

2011 Subaru Tribeca Touring

Thumbs Up: Comfortable for front and rear seat passengers.

Thumbs Down: No telescoping steering wheel, on the expensive side.

Buy This Car If: You know and love Subaru, and want more style, luxury and room than the Forester offers.

For years, Subaru struggled to build some kind of a brand identity in the United States. Even in their early days, they were fairly well known in states like Colorado and Vermont, where winters typically range from bad to brutal. Subaru offered an inexpensive, reliable and fuel efficient AWD alternative to full sized SUVs, and the brand’s reputation began to grow. For years, their advertising slogan was “inexpensive and built to stay that way”, but times move on and buyers don’t necessarily want inexpensive and de-contented cars, even ones that get you just about anywhere you need to go.

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EPA finally issues ratings for 2011 Chevrolet Volt.

Posted in Chevrolet, Commuter Cars, Compact Cars, EcoLust, Economy Cars, Electric Cars, Electric Vehicles, Electronics, Emissions, Engines, Environment by MrAngry | November 24th, 2010 | 3 Responses |

2011 Chevrolet Volt EPA Rating

The EPA has finally issued its fuel consumption rating for the 2011 Chevrolet Volt, and thank God because this was the last thing holding up the first deliveries of GM’s new plug-in electric car. With an estimated 93 MPGE for electric usage and 37 MPG for traditional fuel, GM seems quite pleased. reports that Chevrolet Volt Global Vehicle Line Executive Doug Parks is happy with the EPA’s numbers for the Volt. He also said that they (GM) worked together with the EPA to figure out how all different modes of driving actually impacted the Volt’s actual efficiency.


Fiat 500 Abarth by Hamman and H&R.

Posted in Commuter Cars, Compact Cars, Cool Stuff, Custom, Economy Cars, Engines, Exotic Cars, Fiat, Foreign Cars by MrAngry | November 24th, 2010 | 6 Responses |

Fiat 500 Abarth Hamman

I suppose if you throw enough money and development at something you can make anything go fast and look good. Take this Fiat 500 Abarth for example. In stock form the U.S. version is said to have about 170 hp, a figure that seems pretty good in a car that’s no bigger than a roller skate. You’d figure with that much power in such a pint-sized package most people would be feeling pretty good about it. However the tuners at Hamman and H&R are not most people, so they decided to have a crack at getting a few more ponies out of Fiats little play toy.
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Oprah dishes out 275 2012 VW Beetles to audience members.

Posted in Commuter Cars, Compact Cars, Concept Cars, Cool Stuff, Volkswagen by MrAngry | November 23rd, 2010 | 7 Responses |
2012 Volkswagon Beetle

2012 Volkswagon Beetle Concept

Who is better than Oprah Winfrey? She’s an actress, producer, talk show host, TV executive and one hell of a philanthropist. Oprah is one of the most influential and giving people on the planet and when she gets an idea in her head those who benefit the most are generally the people around her. Back in 2004 for example, she handed out brand new Pontiac G6’s to every member of her studio audience just for being present, a stunt that not only surprised them, but the general public as well. Now it seems that the Queen-of-Daytime-TV is at it again, but this time she’s decided to go the German route by choosing the yet to be release 2012 Volkswagen Beetle.
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2011 Volkswagen Jetta SEL: RideLust Review

Posted in Car Buying, Car Reviews, Cars, Commuter Cars, Compact Cars, European Review, General, New Cars, RideLust Review, Volkswagen by Kurt Ernst | November 22nd, 2010 | 6 Responses |

2011 VW Jetta SEL

Thumbs Up: It’s a lot of car for a reasonable price, styling is much sharper than outgoing model.

Thumbs Down: No cloth or leather seating option, numb steering.

Buy This Car If: You can translate “Farhvergnügen” and want a solid value in an entertaining compact sedan.

I like Volkswagens, and have owned or driven my share over the years. My wife loves them, too, and still misses her 2002 VW Jetta Wagon. The date we sold the car is circled in black on our kitchen calender, and no amount of flowers can pull my wife from her funk on that particular day. I get it, since the car was like a member of the family, through good times and bad, and never gave us an ounce of trouble over the five years we owned it. It got through the worst northeast winters without complaint, and would go places with snow tires mounted that SUVs feared to tread. Needless to say I jumped at the chance to drive the new Jetta, but it certainly had some big shoes to fill.

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