The 2021 Pacifica will offer an advanced all-wheel drive system that preserves Chrysler’s coolest and most proprietary feature – Stow ‘n Go seating – the ability for the 2nd row seats to disappear into the floor. There’s also a new bougie Pinnacle model with standard all-wheel drive and a bunch of add on goodies such as the Premium and Safety Sphere Group and the Uconnect Theater Family Group which includes a new feature called the FamCam Interior Camera – a way for parents to keep tabs on the little ones, even in rear facing car seats. And the seatback video screens have always been a big hit right from the start. With a MSRP at $55,665, this isn’t your blue collar minivan, but it still does an excellent job of making family travel as easy and as enjoyable as can be and offers big time flexibility with a heaping dose of Chrysler cleverness.
The Mazda3 has the hot hatch look but until now it was all for show. Introducing the 2021 2.5 Turbo with standard all-wheel drive providing the oomph this car desperately needs. A car I’ve previously been ambivalent about has been given renewed life with a turbocharged engine. Feed it premium gas and it’ll reward you with 250 horsepower. That’s a huge 72% gain compared with the non-turbo 3 and it peaks much sooner. The top trim Premium Plus model which adds real leather, navigation, a 360 degree camera with real button, traffic sign recognition, and myriad other driver assistance features. Plus, you get the front air dam, gloss black roof spoiler and larger tail pipes. As tested, you’re looking at $34,820. The cost of the turbo and all-wheel drive adds about $3,000. Mix in all-wheel drive and big torque output and suddenly the 3 is a very entertaining drive with plenty of hot hatch spunk and a loveably safe toassability. Where Mazda comes in strong is in the driver assist arena where auto high beams, Traffic Jam Assist, driver attention monitor and rear cross traffic alert. The new turbo 3 hatch is the most fun I’ve had behind the wheel of a Mazda in some time and with this engine in the new CX-30 Mazda will really be making hay.
HONDA CR-V HYBRID TESTDRIVENOW QUICK TAKES.
The 2020 CR-V Hybrid is distinguished from the rest of the CR-V lineup by unique front and rear styling cues that include Hybrid badging on the grille, front fenders, and tailgate; hybrid-exclusive 5-lamp LED fog lights; and a unique rear bumper design. Like the rest of the 2020 CR-V lineup, the 2020 CR-V Hybrid benefits from new headlight designs, new alloy wheel designs for EX and EX-L trims, and new 19-inch wheels on Touring trims.
Inside, the CR-V Hybrid offers the same spacious and tech-savvy cabin as the non-hybrid, including its full-flat folding and 60/40-split second-row seat. Unique to CR-V Hybrid versus its non-hybrid counterpart are three buttons to the right of the push-button gear selector that let the driver select between Sport, EV and ECON modes to help maximize power or fuel efficiency. CR-V Hybrid’s digital gauge cluster also offers functions distinct from the non-hybrid, such as a power-flow meter.
The new CR-V Hybrid comes standard with Real Time AWD with Intelligent Control System™, and a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price starting at $27,750 (excluding destination and handling charges).
The Real Time All-Wheel Drive with Intelligent Control System gives buyers additional inclement-weather driving confidence. Like its gasoline-only counterpart,
CR-V Hybrid also comes standard with the Honda Sensing® suite of safety and driver assistive technologies, automatic climate control, and automatic high beams. The CR-V Hybrid also comes with additional standard features that include LED headlights, Smart Entry and Pushbutton Start, and a cargo cover.
Red Sport is the name Infiniti gives to its highest performing cars and when it comes to the Q50 it’s definitely the 400-horsepower twin-turbo V6 that you want. Here’s what you need to know when shopping the 2021 model.
Infiniti is a brand in transition with its final destination planned to be more Nissan+ and less luxury which means rear-wheel drive platforms, longitudinal engines and geared transmissions might soon be a thing of the past. So it’s no time to sleep on their only sports sedan that possesses all of those attributes; the Q50 Red Sport 400. I’ve always kind of had a thing for this car and even though it’s not getting any younger, it remains an intriguing alternative. Yes, it requires a suspension of disbelief to think that it’s wholly better than say an M340i for nearly the same price, but if you relish driving something you’re unlikely to encounter another one of on your travels – unlike the BMW – then it’s worth entertaining. And one key attraction of the Q50 is its style.
The Q50 offers more passenger and cargo volume than the new 3 Series, as well so there’s that. Mine is up fitted with USB charge ports in the rear – a place that feels just as comfy as that in the front. A benefit of the car’s age is its simplistic controls – there’s nothing to confuse you here and the dual screen infotainment setup is easy to work and supports phone projection – just not wirelessly. It’s an eye-catching interior with gorgeous seats, red stitching, metal speaker grilles for the powerful Bose sound system and matte black carbon fiber. The touchpoints feel legit, as well. And all of the safety goodies come standard and are more easily configurable than they used to be so if there’s something you don’t like – such as lane departure warning – you can kill it while leaving the other features turned on. And you know I love having the around view monitor button right here where it can be quickly accessed. All told, this one stickers for $63,611 while returning thirsty gas mileage of 22mpg in combined driving on premium.
It’s not going to wow you with the latest bells and whistles, but this Red Sport looks sharp, is exciting to drive and sounds just as fun all the while providing 4 season drivability with room for 4.
Toyota’s infamously long product cadence has caused the Sienna to slide all the way to the 4th spot in minivan sales. That may not sound bad until you realize there are only 5 of them on the market. But going on sale this November is an all-new 2021 Sienna Toyota hopes can challenge the segment-leading Chrysler Pacifica. How will it accomplish this? Well, though they no longer own the market with it the Sienna continues to offer all-wheel drive – a big plus in the snowbelt – but here’s the headline: all models will be hybrids. Not a plug-in like the Pacifica, mind you, but a battery-motor- engine deal nevertheless. 245 horsepower and 36mpg is the hook Toyota hopes can reel you in. with this new model strategy. It’s an all-new vehicle from the ground up, elevating the Swagger Wagon look with a fresh design and new features Toyota says make this the most sophisticated, versatile and enjoyable Sienna ever. Engineers focused on reducing noises in the frequencies where conversation takes place, while also mitigating the feeling that you’re driving a bus by using what they call the Bridge Console, ergonomically positioned high with lots of storage, helping to alleviate stress and boost driver comfort. And then there are a host of other convenience features that have become minivan staples such as kick open and close sliding doors, sliding 2nd row captain’s chairs, modern connectivity but not wireless phone projection, Driver Easy Speak, and a vacuum. Above and beyond good stuff like a digital rearview mirror, head-up display, bird’s eye view camera and a refrigerator give the Sienna some distinction. Pricing for the very base FWD Sienna LE with its 8 passenger seating and stowable middle seat starts at $35,635 including delivery while a 7-seat AWD Platinum checks in at $51,635.