2020 Nissan Sentra SR Review By TestDriveNow Car Critic Steve Hammes.
From the $15,000 Versa to the $115,000 GT-R, Nissan’s lineup covers a lot of ground but 3 models do most of the heavy lifting: Rogue, Altima and Sentra and for the latter its redesign is long overdue but well worth the wait because this 2020 Sentra is an absolute success. In many ways the new Sentra reminds me of the equally excellent Kia Forte. The compact sedan segment may have had some of its glory stolen in recent years but the choices have never been better and Nissan’s latest is right there at the top. MSRP as-tested: $25,825
2021 Acura TLX First Look By TestDriveNow Car Critic Steve Hammes. Acura’s just an SUV brand, right? Well, that’s not entirely accurate though the RDX and MDX do outsell Acura’s 4 cars combined by nearly 3-to-1. But Acura’s here to remind us that their cars are still worthy of the caliper badge and that begins with one of their many underrated models, the TLX. The current car is a solid choice and a decent seller but Acura wants to make a bolder impression with this all-new 2021 redesign. Arriving this fall, Acura says this TLX will be the quickest, best-handling and most well-appointed sedan they’ve ever made, a title currently held by the surprisingly good, lame duck RLX Sport Hybrid. With a considerably longer wheelbase, wider track and lower roofline the TLX presents itself as a more legit sports sedan. And moving beyond the recent A-Spec Sport appearance package is the heralded return of the Type S badge…a specification last seen on sporty Acuras over a decade ago. The Type S arrives later next spring. While a 272 horsepower 2.0-liter turbo-4 powers the standard TLX, the Type S utilizes a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 with the engine’s output to be announced later. Both will use a 10-speed automatic. Whereas Acura’s torque vectoring all-wheel drive system is currently only available on the V6 model, the new TLX will offer it across the board replete with quicker reactions and more rear-wheel drive intervention. Brake by wire technology applied from the NSX supercar and an available adaptive damping suspension flesh out the new chassis which Acura claims is the most rigid they’ve ever offered with an infusion of lightweight materials. The TLX’s dual personal cockpit design creates a strongly delineated space for both front seat occupants while the wider body affords more hip and shoulder room for rear seat passengers. The infotainment system incorporated from the RDX uses a touchpad interface. A Japanese company but primarily an American brand, Acura is counting on the new TLX to diversify its SUV sales heavy product portfolio.
2020 Jeep Gladiator Mojave 4X4 Review By Car Critic Steve Hammes.
If you’re into 4-wheeling, then you know that not all off-roading is the same. So while the Trail-Rated badge graces Jeep 4X4s after they’ve proven themselves in 5 critical categories, this first-ever Desert Rated Jeep operates under a different set of criteria. Anyone who likes Jeeps would love to have this one in their garage for those doors off, windshield down, top removed kind of days…just ask Siri where the nearest desert is. MSRP as-tested: $61,315
2020 MINI John Cooper Works Countryman Review By Car Critic Steve Hammes. I love this current generation of MINIs for their balanced approach to performance, style and premium attitude. And the biggest Coopers also lend themselves to more versatility. Furthermore, this one takes the John Cooper Works approach to new heights. A lightly updated Countryman has been announced for the 2021 model year, but until then this JCW is an enjoyable take on a souped-up MINI capable of off-road adventures and racetrack jaunts. MSRP as-tested: $50,100
2020 Mercedes Benz GLB 240 4MATIC Review By TestDriveNow Car Critic Steve Hammes
Mercedes has just added their 3rd 3-row-capable SUV and it’s their smallest. Slotted between the entry-level GLA and compact-sized GLC is the all-new 2020 GLB. The GLB should resonate with badge shoppers who are willing to shrug off some shortcomings in exchange for luxury car membership.