New Cars

EPA rates new 2011 Chrysler 200 at 20 mpg city/31 mpg hwy.

Posted in Chrysler, Featured, Fuel, Fuel-efficient, New Cars, Promoted by MrAngry | January 3rd, 2011 | 2 Responses |

2011 Chrysler 200

For 2011 Chrysler is launching the new 200 sedan, a car that is set to go head to head with the likes of the Honda Accord, all new Hyundai Sonata and Toyota Camry. It has fresh new styling, sufficient room for 5 adults and now, according to the EPA, even gets decent fuel economy. The base Chrysler 200 comes equipped with a 2.4-liter four-cylinder that produces 173 hp and 166 lb-ft of torque. This 4-banger propels the 200 to a projected 20 mpg city/31 mpg hwy through a new 6-speed automatic transmission. Now while this isn’t bad, it still falls below its rivals, as the Hyundai Sonata is rated at 22 city/35 mpg, the Honda Accord at 22 city/34 mpg and finally the Toyota Camry at 22 city/32 mpg.
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Five Car-Related Predictions For The Coming Year

Posted in auto industry, Car Buying, Emissions, Engines, Environment, Featured, Fuel, Fuel-efficient, Gas Prices, New Cars, Newsworthy, Promoted by Kurt Ernst | December 31st, 2010 | 5 Responses |

Looking back on 2010, it was one hell of a roller coaster. Like any other year, it had it’s good times and bad times, but the good times seemed fewer and farther between than in years passed. On the automotive front, enthusiasts got some great new choices, greens got the first modern mass produced electric car (and the first serial hybrid) and everyone else got improved quality and reliability. Car sales were up, despite a down economy, and both Audi and Hyundai posted record years. GM proved that they’re well on the way back to financial health, and Ford continued their growth in market share. Even Chrysler rallied in 2010, introducing the new Jeep Grand Cherokee, the Fiat 500 and the revised 2011 Charger and Challenger.

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Ford Enhances MyKey For Taurus And Explorer

Posted in Car Tech, Ford, Lincoln, New Cars, Newsworthy by Kurt Ernst | December 30th, 2010 | Leave a Reply |

Blocking Stern is one thing, but Opie & Anthony, too? Image: Ford Motor Company

If you’re the parent of a new driver, you’ve probably heard about Ford’s MyKey. Announced last spring, the MyKey feature allows owners of equipped vehicles to set limits for various drivers by reprogramming keys. Using a master key, owners can set a maximum speed limit, set a warning tone and mute the radio until the seat belt is buckled, set a longer “low fuel” warning and prevent safety features (such as stability control, traction control and blind spot warning) from being de-activated. Maximum audio volume can also be limited to 44%, and owners can set warning chimes at speeds of 45, 55 or 65 miles per hour.

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Exactly How Much Can The 2011 Ford Explorer Tow?

Posted in Ford, Funny Videos, New Cars, SUV by Kurt Ernst | December 29th, 2010 | Leave a Reply |

The correct answer is 5,000 pounds when properly equipped, which is enough to meet the needs of 99.6% of Explorer owners per Ford’s own research. Coincidentally, that weight also translates to $2.3 million in one-dollar bills, when loaded onto an open trailer. As the narrator of the video demonstrates, the 2011 Ford Explorer also has reasonably good acceleration when towing 5,000 pounds, and can be equipped with trailer sway control to ensure that whatever you’re towing stays behind you.

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Score That 2005 Ford Explorer 1, 2011 Chevy Volt 0

Posted in Cars, Chevrolet, Crashes, Electric Cars, General, New Cars, Newsworthy by Kurt Ernst | December 29th, 2010 | Leave a Reply |

Chevy has provided first responder training on the Volt. Photo: © GM Corp.

It’s official: the first Volt to be binned was taken out by a 2005 Ford Explorer, whose driver was “distracted while reaching for a cell phone”. The 24 year old woman behind the wheel of the Explorer hit the Volt from behind at speed, which resulted in minor injuries to her 2 year old son when his safety seat failed. No injuries were reported to either driver involved in the incident, which occurred in Linden, Michigan. Since Volts have gone on sale in Michigan, it isn’t known if the Volt driver purchased the car or was driving a loaner vehicle. It also wasn’t clear if the driver of the Explorer was ticketed for the accident, but let me go on record as saying, “I sure as hell hope so.”

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Kelly Blue Book Lists 2010s Most Researched Cars

Posted in auto industry, Car Buying, Cars, Featured, General, Lists, New Cars, Promoted by Kurt Ernst | December 28th, 2010 | 2 Responses |
2010 Honda Accord

The Honda Accord tops the list for the sixth straight year. Image: Honda Motors America

For years, Kelly Blue Book (KBB) has been the go-to resource to obtain pricing information on both new and used vehicles. What started as an “insider only”, subscription-based service for car dealers went public when KBB began selling their little blue books to anyone with interest and money. Since that time, KBB and others have de-mystified car dealer pricing, and now provide a handy online resource for car shoppers. Want to know what a dealer pays for a car? KBB will tell you (mostly). Want to know what option packages cost? KBB will tell you. Want to know how much you should pay in your area, and what the current incentives are? KBB will tell you.

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Will 2012 Hyundai Azeras Come With This Test Drive Option?

Posted in Car Buying, Hyundai, New Cars by Kurt Ernst | December 25th, 2010 | 1 Response |

If I understand the global Hyundai product line, the U.S. market Azera sells as the Grandeur HG in the rest of the world. The sedan slots in above the Sonata, but below the Genesis, and represents Hyundai’s interpretation of affordable luxury. The Azera proved that Hyundai could sell upscale cars, and its success was part of the reason Hyundai brought in the Genesis and Equus sedans.

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2011 Buick Regal Turbo: A Do-It-All Luxury Sport Sedan?

Posted in Buick, Car Buying, Car Tech, Featured, GM, New Cars, Promoted by Kurt Ernst | December 22nd, 2010 | 2 Responses |

Image: © GM Corp.

There’s a problem with most conventional sport sedans: sure they’re fun when you’re blasting up a canyon road, and they give you a sense of confidence when you’re hammer down on your commute home, but they aren’t always a pleasant alternative when you need to eat up highway miles. The very things that make them competent on twisty roads (stiff suspension, precise and weighted steering), make conventional sport sedans uncomfortable for cross-country trips. Even those that allow you to dial in suspension comfort may not soften the steering or make the throttle response less harsh, unless you’re spending serious money for a BMW or Mercedes sedan. Isn’t there a solution for the budget minded enthusiast, who enjoys enthusiastic weekend drives but needs a comfortable weekday commute?

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2011 Ford Explorer Earns IIHS Safety Award

Posted in auto industry, Crash Testing, Ford, New Cars, Safety by Kurt Ernst | December 22nd, 2010 | Leave a Reply |

The 2011 Explorer undergoing IIHS crash testing. Photo: Ford Motor Company

The new 2011 Ford Explorer is just beginning to hit dealer showrooms, and the all-new-from-the-ground-up SUV is already beginning to collect awards. This time, it’s the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety’s “Top Safety Pick” award, given to vehicles that earn a “good” rating in offset frontal crashes, side impacts, rear impacts and roof strength testing. Top Safety Pick vehicles must also have electronic stability control.

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RideLust Asks: What Was Your Worst New Car Buying Experience?

Posted in Car Buying, Featured, New Cars, Promoted by Kurt Ernst | December 20th, 2010 | 9 Responses |

You see him as a car salesman; he sees you as lunch.

I’ve purchased a lot of new cars over the years (12 at last count, not including bikes), so I’ve learned a thing or two about the art and science of negotiating with car dealers. I’ve purchased new vehicles in Colorado, Minnesota, New Jersey and Florida, and nearly all of the transactions have gone smoothly. That’s not to say that they’ve all been easy or pleasant, but they’ve nearly all been civil. The exception to the rule was buying my FJ Cruiser in Florida, so I’m posting this as a lesson to others. Spot the warning signs of a predatory dealership early, and you avoid the unnecessary drama you’re likely to encounter; unless you live in Whitefish, Montana, chances are good you’ve got other dealerships to choose from in your neighborhood.

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