Just when the Kona thought it had the small end of Hyundai’s SUV lineup all to itself in comes its just born little sibling; the all-new 2020 Venue.
This entry-level utility vehicle gives Hyundai a total of 7 from which to choose and the Venue will be the most affordable when it arrives at dealerships this fall. Hyundai says this one is “for those constantly on-the-go”, accommodating busy lifestyles in a fast-paced urban environment.
Knowing fuel economy is an important consideration for customers in this segment, the 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine is estimated to deliver up to 33mpg in combined driving mated to either Hyundai’s excellent CVT or even a 6-speed manual – both driving the front wheels. No all-wheel drive option here.
Providing interior volume not too dissimilar from the Kona, the cabin has been designed for “adequate space for the versatile urban commuter, making it an ideal alternative to a subcompact car, according to Hyundai.
And because it’s Hyundai you know they won’t skimp on “stuff” and indeed a suite of advanced safety features, connectivity and multimedia systems are offered.
While the compact and 3-row SUV segment has been growing by leaps and bounds, this 5-passenger midsize type has been getting squeezed out. But with our insatiable appetite for utility vehicles these too are on the comeback. This is the all-new Blazer.
Similar in length, wheelbase and ground clearance to the TrailBlazer before it, the new Blazer is marked by daring design and robust levels of technology. This one here is the sporty RS trim with a host of distinguishing traits and blacked-out features that lend it a Camaro-like persona. Not for the introverted, the Blazer RS is a visually stunning specimen with a futuristic patina and crazy 20” Dark Android wheels. So you see it and think it’s going to be all spicy and sonorous, but in reality it’s soothing and serene.
Bigger than the Equinox and smaller than the Traverse, the Blazer fleshes out Chevy’s SUV lineup with a boldly-styled yet quietly composed midsized comeback.
The Blazer’s design says racy but this SUV is more of a teddy bear, with the headline being quiet and soft. This RS trim is all about style and the V6 is very strong but the Blazer coddles its occupants with automatic everything and technology that doesn’t fight you.
So you’ve wanted a Range Rover for quite some time but you just keep thinking to yourself, darn it I really need a hybrid and preferably one with a plug. OK, that scenario is highly unlikely but that doesn’t mean Land Rover isn’t doing it anyway because they are. Meet the 2020 Range Rover Sport PHEV.
MSRP as-tested: $93,200
There’s seemingly nothing the X7 can’t do and do extremely well including parking itself and adjusting the cruise control based on speed limit signs. But the Extended Traffic Jam assistant is as close as the X7 gets to autonomous driving permitting hands-off the wheel, slow, rush hour driving with no driver intervention needed…no Cadillac Super Cruise magic here. Heated and cooled cupholders, heated armrests, soft close doors, etc., etc. etc. I think you get the picture. Other than not having the aforementioned Luxury Seating Package, night vision and rear seat entertainment this X7 contains the full pantry of BMW convenience and safety features. I’ve been in the new Mercedes GLS but have yet to drive it…that being said it would take something beyond spectacular to beat what BMW has delivered here.
The tester BMW has provided is a dream machine replete with nearly every feature the X7 has to offer. So keep in mind that for about $75,000 there’s the X7 xDrive40i with 6-cylinder power. This one however is the 50i and has a fire-breathing twin-turbo V8 and nearly $20 grand in options to arrive at an as-tested price of $112,245. For that amount, every aspect of the X7 experience has been pushed to the limit.
The redesigned and refreshed 2019 Honda Pilot brings with it a long list of upgrades to Honda’s award-winning 8-seat SUV. The numerous changes include more aggressive exterior styling, an available new hands-free power tailgate, substantial powertrain refinements, major upgrades to available connected-car technology, an available new Display Audio touchscreen system with Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ integration, and a volume knob. The 2019 Pilot also adopts the Honda Sensing® suite of advanced driver-assistive and safety technology as standard in all trims.