Saturday, May 31, 2014


The 2014 Dodge Dart ranks 20 out of 41 Affordable Small Cars.Ever since the Dodge Dart debuted last year, Dodge has been attempting to spice up its smallest sedan with interesting colors and appearance packages that give the Dart a little more visual appeal. The latest of these options for the 2014 Dodge Dart is new Blacktop appearance package that gives the Dart a slightly more sinister look.

Test drivers say that equipped with a four-cylinder engine, the base Dodge Dart is slow to accelerate. Test drivers note that an available turbocharged engine makes the Dart peppier, and a larger four-cylinder engine that’s newly standard on the SXT, Limited and GT trims is even stronger. Still, auto writers say that the Dart can’t compete with more powerful compact cars in the class. Most reviewers prefer the standard six-speed manual transmission for its precise shifter. 

Others say that while the available six-speed automatic is generally smooth, it can be slow to downshift when added power is needed. Equipped with an automatic transmission, the base Dart gets an EPA-estimated 24/34 mpg city/highway, which is on the low end of the class. Equipped with a turbocharged 1.4-liter engine, the Dart gets an impressive 28/40 mpg, which is terrific for the class. Most test drivers praise the Dart’s steering for being accurate and responsive. The Dart has an above-average safety score and comes standard with 10 air bags, including a driver’s knee airbag, which is notable for the class.

The 2014 Dart has an attractive interior made with a blend of soft-touch and hard plastic surfaces that are well-constructed, auto writers say. Several test drivers remark that the cabin offers plenty of space and feels more like a midsize sedan than a compact car. Front seats are supportive and comfy, they say, and there is ample head- and legroom in the back seat. Standard features include a four-speaker audio system and an auxiliary audio jack. 

Buyers must upgrade to get air conditioning, power door locks and cruise control, which are standard on many rival compacts. Optional features include a USB port, Bluetooth phone streaming, navigation, a backup camera, a nine-speaker Alpine audio system and Dodge’s Uconnect infotainment system, which has an 8.4-inch touch screen. Test drivers praise the infotainment system for its simple menus and large touch screen, saying it rivals the best systems in the class. 

The 2014 Dodge Dart is a five-seat sedan that comes in five trims: SE, SXT, Aero, GT and Limited. The base model comes with a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine, while optional engines include a turbocharged 1.4-liter four-cylinder engine and a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine. A six-speed manual transmission is standard and a six-speed automatic is available on all trims and standard on the top-of-the-line Limited. An automated manual is available on the Aero trim. The Dodge Dart was an all-new model in 2013 and has seen few changes since then, so this overview uses applicable research and reviews from the 2013 and 2014 model years.

Friday, May 30, 2014


Amarok Power Concept is a DJ's dream, some enticing cars at Volkswagen’s Wörthersee meet this year, such as the Audi A3 Clubsport Quattro and Skoda Citijet, we can’t help but be interested in some of the special-equipment show cars. Who wouldn’t want an Audi Q3 TDI crossover with an on-board tent, or a thumping Power DJ to rock your vacation ,you  Volkswagen Amarok pickup with a 5000-watt sound system? tat rock roll your summer time Austria's annual Wörthersee festival is right around the corner, and as you'd expect, Volkswagen Group has prepped a generous amount of concepts to show off at the big VW show. Some of the more notable ones from VW and Audi include an audio-focused Amarok Power concept, the Audi A3 Clubsport Quattro concept, and a Q3 that comes with its very own tent.
The Amarok Power Concept is a DJ's dream, as it boasts a 5000-watt mobile sound system that fits perfectly within the Amarok's bed. The concept is ready to make noise anywhere it goes, as speakers, subwoofers, and microspeakers are all installed and stowed away in a "compact cube." Keeping in line with the music theme, Volkswagen says the Amarok has "rhythm" with a color scheme that flows together nicely with metallic, high-gloss, and matte surfaces. Painted in "Dynamic Grey" metallic paint, matte "Gunmetal" side-mirror covers and 22-inch wheels add contrast, while orange decals on the door sills and orange brake calipers add a pop of color. The Amarok has also been equipped with bi-xenon headlights with chrome inserts and chrome-plated twin tailpipes. Inside, the Amarok is swathed in Orange Power Nappa leather upholstery, which is offset by black Alcantara trim on the steering wheel, bucket seats, and door panels. The leather seatbacks also wear a unique design in that they're laser-etched with the same honeycomb design on the Amarok's front grille.

Although this heavy metal  rolling  Amarok concept is different from last year's track-ready Amarok, it shares the same hardware. Power comes from a 3.0-liter V-6 TDI turbo diesel that produces around 270 hp and 443 lb-ft of torque. The sport truck makes the most of that engine with an eight-speed automatic and all-wheel drive, and Volkswagen says that combination results in a 0-62 mph time of 7.9 seconds with a top speed of 130 mph. Audi Q3 Camping Tent  for summer time fun rock on very own tent. watts heavy metal .

 Audi Q3 With Tent Shown At Worthersee 02 The Audi Q3 is ready to explore the outdoors with its very own tent. As part of Audi's original accessories, the Q3 2.0 TDI is arriving at Wörthersee with a special tent that, according to Volkswagen, "offers practical gadgets for the hobby athlete." The Q3 camping tent can withstand tough weather conditions with a wind load rating of around 40 mph. The tent can be removed from a supplied bag and can be set up in as little as seven minutes. Audi says all you have to do is roll it out and pump it up, and it's ready. To ensure the tent doesn't blow over or for extra room, it can even be fastened to the open rear hatch of the Q3. In addition to the tent, a kayak rack is also available for the Q3 for those who want to hit the water waves or oceans for fun swimmers.

Thursday, May 29, 2014


GM’s last efforts to put diesel engines in U.S.-market passenger cars in the 1980s were famously—or rather, infamously—half-baked, and turned a generation of American consumers against oil-burners. But in Chevrolet’s new Cruze diesel, which is making its debut at the 2013 Chicago auto show, GM probably doesn’t have to worry about its prior bad-diesel acts. Compression-ignition engines have been gaining mainstream popularity here in the U.S., largely due to their high fuel-economy numbers. That the Cruze diesel is pretty far removed from a smoky ’86 Chevette bodes well, too.

Chevrolet's turbo-diesel four-cylinder was conceived in Torino, Italy, and is created in Kaiserslautern, Germany, but it has been educated in the U.S. It's not a new engine, being already used in Opel Astras and various other GM vehicles around the world at a rate of 400,000 annually. Still, the U.S. version is unique, thanks to the varied driving conditions found in North America: 120-degree Fahrenheit Death Valley summer heat, minus-40-degree northern-Minnesota winters, and 14,000-foot Colorado mountain passes. And U.S. emissions rules require more tweaks, such as higher levels of exhaust-gas recirculation, and different exhaust after-treatment hardware.

Chevy engineers opted for a system essentially downsized from the Duramax pickup diesel engines, using a particulate filter plus urea injection to trim oxides of nitrogen. The 4.5-gallon urea tank is located under the trunk floor where the spare tire used to live (Chevy supplies a can of fix-a-flat instead). In normal driving, a tankful of urea should last 10,000 miles—topping off the urea is recommended when the Cruze gets its scheduled oil changes every 7500 miles.

The foundation of the Cruze diesel is the Euro-standard iron-block, aluminum-head four-cylinder with a steel crankshaft and aluminum pistons with a compression ratio of 16.5:1. The diesel juice is piped in at just over 23,000 psi via the common fuel rail and piezo injectors. Although torque peaks at 264 lb-ft at 2600 rpm, 250 lb-ft is available from 1750 to 3000 rpm, and a boot on the pedal brings 280 lb-ft of overboost for up to 10 seconds—the diesel version of IndyCar's “push to pass.” A six-speed automatic is the only available transmission.

The sharp-eyed might notice the 17-inch aluminum wheels and low-rolling-resistance tires, but there's not much to visually set the diesel apart from other Cruzes. Tough to see are aero bits, mostly picked up from the Cruze Eco, such as the grille opening and shutters, underbody aero panels, and new engine-compartment baffling. The heaviest nondiesel Cruze LTZ we’ve weighed comes in at 3208 pounds, and the 300-or-so-pound additional heft of the diesel kicks it to an estimated 3500 pounds, which calls for other changes, slightly bigger brakes being one. There's added sound isolation, such as a different dash mat and hood blanket that help keep diesel rattle from reaching the cabin, Other than which pump you use at a fuel station and the diesel noise that almost disappears once you're in the car, the Cruze diesel’s performance envelope is virtually identical to that of the 1.4-liter gas-turbo version. The diesel’s estimated 0-to-60 time of 8.1 seconds puts it nose to nose with the gas-turbo Cruze, although the diesel’s torque feels much richer at part throttle and very solid in the 0-to-40-mph range. 

We drove one to Indy and back for the 500. On the 292 miles south, we stayed with traffic, much of it at 70 to 80 mph, and our average with a few stops, including the Auburn Cord Duesenberg Automobile Museum in Auburn, Indiana, was an indicated 44.9 mpg. Heading back to Detroit on the freeway, we once again began monitoring estimated fuel economy with the car’s trip computer. During the first 40-mile stretch at a boring 55 mph, we saw a Prius-like 58.4 mpg, followed by another 30 miles at 65 mph for a still-impressive 53.9 mpg, and a more satisfying 20 miles at 75 mph and 43.4 mpg. A 30-mile off-freeways-through-towns stretch brought 43.1 mpg.

A more scientific evaluation of the Cruze diesel’s fuel economy will be accomplished in an upcoming road test, but the Chevy appears to be playing in the same sandbox as is its major competitor, the Volkswagen Jetta TDI. Consider EPA window-label fuel economy: the Cruze diesel at 27 city/46 highway, the Jetta TDI at 30 city/42 highway. Multiply the EPA highway number by fuel-tank size, and the potential range shakes out to the Cruze at 717 miles, the VW at 609 miles. At 151 horsepower, the Cruze edges out the Jetta’s 140-horse rating. Torque is a similar story, with the Cruze at 264 lb-ft, the VW at 236. Warranty: The Cruze gets five years/100,000 miles; the VW is five years/60,000 miles. Pricing is another head-to-head battle with the Cruze at $25,695 and VW TDIs with the DSG automatic starting at $24,885 (Jetta), $25,390 (Beetle), and $26,130 (Golf).

Even so, diesel fuel is as expensive as premium unleaded in many areas, and as nicely appointed as it is, the Cruze diesel’s $25,695 base price is a couple thousand dollars more than the top-trimmed Cruze LTZ gas-turbo automatic's. So it could take a sharp pencil and a bunch of miles for the fuel-cost savings of the diesel to offset its higher initial cost compared with the 26 city/38 highway LTZ gas-turbo automatic. But then again, the new turbo-diesel takes the Cruze driving experience to new heights, with generous part-throttle torque and the ability to climb grades or accelerate without a lot of transmission downshifting. The days of slow, smelly, smoky diesels are indeed behind .

Tuesday, May 27, 2014


The new Grand Cherokee WK2 ARB deluxe bar combines aesthetic appeal with functionality to keep your vehicle both stylish and safe. This bar has been designed with considerations for each model variant, featuring ARB's renowned multi fold upswept and tapered wing design and a wider split pan to accommodate factory radar as well as providing easy access to winch handles.

The most important part of a bull bar or protection accessory is the mounting system. ARB's unique mounting systems offer maximum strength in all three directions- direct impact, side impact and pull or shear for winching. Their mounting systems are designed to spread the load over both chassis rails, creating the addition of an integral cross member on the chassis. Does not interfere with the vehicle's Crush rate or sensitive airbag system. The ARB Bull Bar is the only bumper on the planet crash test certified to work with your vehicle's crumple system. No other bumper on the planet offers this level of safety to you and your family. Includes ARB's five-fold upswept and tapered wing design, as well as the continuous uprights thru the bumper section that reinforce the outer frame.

When you purchase an ARB Bull Bar, you can be assured it's been designed to suit your vehicle. All ARB bars are designed using the latest CAD CAM Designing equipment, taking all aspects of the vehicle into consideration. The front of the vehicle is carefully assessed to determine the height of the bar, mounting system, headlight and side lamp requirements, vulnerable equipment and panels, radiator air flow etc., and then a design is created around these specifications. 
The other most obvious feature that sets ARB protection accessories apart is the quality. Quality of material, quality of manufacture, quality of finish. ARB's commitment to quality is visible in every accessory we manufacture. FINISH: To ensure your investment is properly protected, they treat all of the manufactured items to a three stage finishing process. To enhance paint adhesion and remove any loose scale all products are steel shot blasted and then washed in hot phosphate to prevent rust. The products are then electrostatically powder coated and cured in a 215 degree oven.

By far the best looking bumper on the market for either Grand Cherokee, it is also the only bumper crash tested to work in conjunction with your vehicle's crumple zones and air bag system. Other bumpers may have a beefy look, but ARB is the only company with the ability to crash test their bumpers for the ultimate balance in safety and strength. Comes with winch mounting capability for our Warn winch, and a cover-up plate for those who chose not to run a winch in the bumper.

An extremely important point regarding the ARB Bull Bar over all others on the market... the ARB bumper is crash test certified for use with your Jeep airbag system. No other bumper on the market has this. Are you willing to run the risk of having your airbag blow in your face for no reason, or have your insurance company not cover replacement because your bumper wasn't certified for the airbag system? Its just not worth your safety or the liability. Just one of the many reasons to stick with the best looking and strongest on the market, the ARB Bull Bar.

ARB Bull Bars are completely bolton. No metal cutting or welding is required. All you need is a set of wrenches and the ability to follow easy instructions with lots of pictures. Don't throw away hundreds of $$$ on a "professional" installation, do it yourself easily at home with no special tools needed. The bumper kits are designed for the novice wrencher in mind. You can literally save hundreds of dollars by having us ship to your location and you just doing things on your own. VERY easy to do yourself!

Sunday, May 25, 2014

2014 RAM 2500 HEMI HD CREW CAB 4x4 V-8.Liter 6-4

Heavy-duty trucks are really judged by one thing and one thing alone: can it get the job done, and can it do it again. And again. And again. RAM, the truck and commercial division of Dodge, sought to upgrade the 2500’s capabilities in the new model year and have done so by offering a slew of upgrades, both under the hood and in the suspension.

New for 2014 is a five-link coil rear suspension, and a rear air suspension option which doesn’t negatively impact towing or payload. The air suspension offers automatic load leveling, which improves stability and ride even when towing large loads. RAM also proudly touts their unsurpassed powertrain warranty and extended maintenance cycles which make it cheaper to keep the RAM 2500 on the road.

With the 6.4-liter Hemi engine nestled between its fenders, the Ram 2500 has an entirely different personality than does its diesel analogue. Step hard on the accelerator in the 2500 Hemi, and the run to 60 mph takes 7.9 seconds; stay in it, and the quarter-mile mark arrives in 16.1 at 88 mph. (Note: Our test truck substituted a 4.11:1 rear end for the stock 3.73:1, a $125 option.) Although that’s 0.6 second better in the 0-to-60 and quarter-mile measures than the 2012 Ram 2500 diesel we last tested, it doesn’t tell the entire story. When it comes to motivating 7039 pounds of Ram truck, the gasoline Hemi is all hands on deck, working overtime to rush through its six-speed automatic transmission. Its diesel-powered sibling, however, goes about its business with conviction, working hard but never feeling stressed or short of muscle.

Deciphering tow ratings for pickups can be a gray area—the trailering tables for Ram’s HD pickups are 23 pages long—but checking the box for the aforementioned 4.10:1 rear axle increased the tow rating of our Ram 2500 Big Horn crew-cab 4x4 test truck to 15,500 pounds from the 12,500-pound figure quoted for the standard 3.73:1 axle. Tow ratings for the standard 5.7-liter gas engine check in at 11,060 pounds for the 3.73:1 axle and 13,060 pounds for the 4.10:1. Despite having nearly double the amount of torque on tap, the Cummins diesel with six-speed automatic combo in the Ram 2500 Big Horn crew-cab 4x4 ups the max tow figure to only 17,120 pounds. In that light, the eight-grand less-expensive 6.4-liter Hemi begins to make more sense, particularly for buyers who don’t tow on a daily basis. (Curiously, selecting the popular RamBox bed storage bins lowers the tow figure by a seemingly inconsequential 140 pounds in the 6.4-liter gas trucks and 110 pounds in the diesel.) Fuel economy is an equally close race: We averaged 11 mpg in the Ram 2500 Hemi compared with 12 mpg in the 2012 Ram 2500 diesel. A 2013 Ram 3500 dualie we tested last year averaged 13 mpg.

Until now, virtually every truck rated at three-quarter tons and higher employed rear leaf springs, technology almost as old as the wheel itself. Reliable and dumb-nuts simple, poor ride quality is the leaf spring’s enduring sore spot. To get a handle on it without compromising payload capability, Ram has outfitted the 2500 with a new five-link coil-spring rear suspension for 2014. We’re sure it’s a fine arrangement on its own merits, but our tester was outfitted with the also-new-for-2014 auto-leveling rear air suspension ($1595) that replaces the springs with airbags. So equipped, the 2500 Big Horn crew cab challenged our preconceived notions regarding the unladen ride quality of a heavy-duty truck. There’s no mistaking the giant Ram 2500 for a car, but the engineers have certainly taken some rough edges off the truck’s ride, particularly in regard to impact harshness.

Ease of maneuvering the 7039-pound Ram and reducing driver fatigue are top priorities for the truck’s hydraulic power steering, so attributes such as feedback and on-center feel are absent. Nonetheless, the big 2500 displays surprisingly good transient responses in town and tracks true on the highway, with one caveat: when the winds kick up, the truck wanders like a college dropout with a trust fund, requiring constant correction to stay on the path. Pressed hard on our 300-foot skidpad, the Ram 2500 pulled 0.70 g of lateral grip while exhibiting heavy understeer. Hauling the truck down to a stop from 70 mph consumed 202 feet, with the driver reporting no fade in repeated stops. “Pedal feel” is a relative term in the HD truck world, and the Ram 2500’s brake pedal gets the job done, but without distinction.

Cowboy Deluxe ,The Big Horn trim level of our test truck sits above the Tradesman and SLT in Ram truck hierarchy. Our example included the 22Z package ($1835), with steering-wheel-mounted audio controls, underhood illumination, Big Horn badging, and a 10-way power-adjustable driver’s seat. The Luxury Group package ($640) added, among other niceties, a heated steering wheel and seats, auto-dimming mirrors, and Ram’s trick, configurable seven-inch multiview screen in the instrument cluster. Checking the box for Chrysler’s familiar Uconnect system ($1005) brought an 8.4-inch touch screen, satellite radio, navigation, and multiple connectivity options.

So equipped, the 2500 crew cab’s interior is the same comfy place we’ve come to know and love in recent Ram trucks. Controls are within easy reach, storage is ample (dual glove boxes!), and dual rearview cameras (cargo view, $325, and backup, $200) made it easy to forget we were in a nearly 20-foot-long vehicle. But it was ready to work, with the Fifth-Wheel/Gooseneck Towing Prep group ($400), 220-amp alternator ($100), side steps ($600), LT275/70-18 on-/off-road tires ($200), a spray-in bedliner ($475), and finally, the Protection group ($100), which adds tow hooks and a transfer-case skid plate. By the time the Ram 2500 Big Horn cleared the ticket window, it was commanding an as-tested $52,600.

We’re impressed with how civilized the HD-truck segment has become over the past decade or so, but there’s still no getting around the fact that this 6.4-liter Hemi-powered Ram is a 3.5-ton rolling workhorse. There is a price to pay at the pump, regardless of which fossil fuel you choose to burn, and the choice between gas and diesel seems to heavy metal or you are rocking rolling you have the bridge captain HD haul piles of stuff most often behind or in your truck.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

A LOOK AT THE 2014 NISSAN NV Passenger Van

If you've got a baseball team, a church group or airport-bound hotel patrons to haul around, you know that even the biggest SUV isn't big enough. You need maximum cargo capacity and multiple rows of seating, and that's exactly what big vans like the 2014 Nissan NV can give you. When it comes to large vans, there have been just a few choices from Chevrolet and Ford for quite some time, but Nissan's large cargo- and passenger-hauling NV van gives its dated competitors a run for their money.

Versatility is important with these large cargo vans, and the 2014 Nissan NV has plenty of it. It has a multitude of seating arrangements that allow for increased legroom, easier access to the backseats or even maximum cargo space while you're carrying five passengers. The second, third and fourth rows become a veritable game of Tetris and you can set them up however you'd like. Maximum passenger capacity is 12 people, which should be fine for almost anybody, though some competing vans go as high as 15 passengers.

If you're looking for a large passenger van, there are now more options than ever before. The 2014 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter is one of our favorites, thanks to features like its 15-passenger capacity and a high-roof option (which the NV only offers in its cargo variant). The Sprinter has better interior features, more space and a smoother, more carlike driving feel, but is predictably more expensive, too. Then there are the 2014 Chevrolet Express and 2014 GMC Savana twins, but those are dated and have a lower walk-around area in the cabin. The same applies to the even older 2014 Ford E-Series. Any of those vans might fit your needs, but overall we think that the 2014 Nissan NV is modern, comfortable and extremely useful for carrying large groups.

The 2014 Nissan NV Passenger full-size van comes in just a single model: the 3500. There are three trims: S, SV and SL. The base S comes with 17-inch steel wheels, a sliding passenger-side door, privacy glass, water-repellent cloth upholstery, a four-way manual driver seat, a tilt-only steering wheel, air-conditioning and a four-speaker audio system with a CD player and auxiliary audio jack. Optional on the S is the Power Basic package that includes power windows and locks, cruise control and keyless entry.

The SV gets the Power Basic package's contents, along with rear parking sensors, chrome exterior accents, an eight-way power driver seat, manual lumbar adjustment, a center console, two additional 12-volt power outlets and a six-speaker sound system.

The SL trim level (V8 only) adds front parking sensors, foglights, leather upholstery, heated front seats, a leather-wrapped steering wheel, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, Bluetooth phone connectivity and dual-zone automatic climate control.

The 2014 Nissan NV is available with either a 4.0-liter V6 engine (261 horsepower and 281 pound-feet of torque) or a 5.6-liter V8 (317 hp and 385 lb-ft of torque). Both engines are paired to a five-speed automatic transmission and all NVs are rear-wheel drive. With the V6, an NV Passenger has a maximum tow rating of 6,200 pounds. With the V8, it has a max tow rating of 8,700 pounds.

Standard safety features on the 2014 Nissan NV include antilock brakes, stability control and traction control, front-seat side airbags and full-length side curtain airbags. A rearview camera and front and rear parking sensors are optional.

The NV Passenger comes with four rows of seating for a maximum capacity of 12 passengers. The second and third rows are 65/35-split, while the fourth row is 50/50-split. Each section can be individually removed, granting owners considerable flexibility for accommodating both passengers and luggage. With the fourth row removed, the second and third rows can be repositioned farther back for additional legroom.

There's no confusing the 2014 Nissan NV as anything other than a giant van, but it's at least easier to drive than other full-size cargo haulers. The ride quality is decent whether it's unloaded or full, and the noise levels are surprisingly low at freeway speeds, at least by large-metal-box-on-wheels standards. Visibility is good out the front and is enhanced by large side mirrors.

The V6 engine produces satisfying performance even with a full load, and the V8 is even better. No matter which engine you choose you'll find the automatic transmission delivers seamless and well-timed shifts.

Thursday, May 22, 2014


Used the 2011 model for the some from 2014 to up date 2015 Chevrolet Silverado HD ,Chevy redesigned its light-duty full-size pickups for the 2014 model year, giving them the bold styling and refined cabins the HDs lacked. For 2015, the HD pickups get the same treatment, placing them at the top of the competitive work truck market.

The 2015 Chevrolet Silverado HD comes in heavy-duty 2500HD and heavier-duty 3500HD variants with three cab styles, two bed lengths, and single or dual rear wheels. Cab styles consist of a two- or three-passenger regular cab, a five- or six-passenger double cab, and a five- or six-passenger crew cab. The double cab and crew cab body styles have four doors, while the regular cab has two. The regular cab comes only with an 8-foot bed, while the double and crews are offered with 6-foot-6-inch and 8-foot beds. Only the 3500 is offered with dual rear wheels.

Trim levels include WT (Work Truck), LT and LTZ. The WT is sparsely appointed, with vinyl floors instead of carpeting. It does, however, have air conditioning, an AM/FM stereo with 4.2-inch MyLink screen, a trip computer, power windows and locks, cruise control and 17-inch steel wheels. LT trims get floormats and carpeting, Bluetooth connectivity, a CD player, satellite radio, OnStar assistance, remote keyless entry and alloy wheels. LTZ trims add leather upholstery, 10-way power adjustable front seats, dual-zone automatic climate control, heated front seats, a Bose audio system, an 8-inch MyLink screen with access to Pandora Internet radio, a locking rear differential and an integrated trailer brake controller.

Notable options consist of 20-inch wheels, power-adjustable pedals, a Bose audio system, a navigation system, heated and cooled seats, skid plates, off-road suspension, a snow-plow prep package, a sunroof, rear DVD entertainment, power rear sliding window, a tonneau cover and a plastic bedliner. A Driver Alert package adds lane departure warning, forward collision alert, General Motors' Safety Alert Seat, and front and rear park assist.

Under the hood,The 2015 Chevrolet Silverado HD comes standard with GM's Vortec 6.0-liter V8 engine, which produces 360 horsepower at 5400 rpm and 380 lb-ft of torque at 4200 rpm. It comes with a 6-speed automatic transmission with manual shift capability and a tow/haul feature.

The majority of buyers will spend the $7,195 for the optional 6.6-liter Duramax turbocharged diesel V8. It churns out 397 horsepower at 3000 rpm and 765 lb-ft of torque at 1600 rpm. It is paired with an Allison 6-speed automatic transmission — also with manual shift capability and a tow/haul feature — that adds another $1,200.

Maximum towing capacity for the 2500HD is 14,500 pounds with a ball hitch or 17,900 pounds with a fifth wheel. Those numbers are 19,600 and 23,200 pounds for the 3500HD. Maximum payload is 4,306 pounds for the 2500 variant, 4,682 pounds for a 3500 with single rear wheels, and 7,734 pounds for a 3500 duallie. The conventional towing and payload numbers are at the top of the class, but the fifth-wheel towing capacity is bested by the Ram 3500's staggering 30,000-pound capacity.

The base 4-wheel-drive system works part time, so it shouldn't be used on dry pavement. Chevrolet also offers a full-time 4WD system that can be left engaged on dry pavement. Both systems include low-range gearing to aid off-roading and towing.

Steering and braking are all well controlled for a pickup of this size. The steering isn't as direct as in most cars. It has some play on-center and is rather slow, but it's much improved from GM trucks of the past. The brakes are responsive and predictable, without a mushy pedal feel. The most annoying trait of the Silverado HD is its sheer size. This thing is a heavy metal rocking , especially the crew cab with the long bed.

Chevrolet's two engine choices are both quite capable. The 6.0-liter 360-horsepower gasoline V8 is strong and reliable, and it emits a proper V8 burble. However, buyers interested in ultimate capability should opt for the 6.6-liter Duramax turbodiesel. Unladen, it's not much quicker than the gas engine in a drag race, but it pulls stronger when towing a trailer or hauling a load. It's also more fuel efficient.

The diesel engine comes with a gradient cruise control system that uses the transmission, cruise control and a diesel exhaust brake to help the Silverado maintain a constant speed. To show off the prowess of this system and the diesel engine itself, Chevrolet had its Ford and Ram competition on hand at the press drive to participate in two exercises. Pulling a 10,000-pound trailer, the Chevy pulled faster uphill than both rivals and maintained a more constant cruise-control speed heading downhill. Set at 55 mph, the Ford accelerated up to 70 mph on a 6 percent downhill grade, the Ram hit 65 mph, and the Chevy kept a more controlled speed of 60 mph. The effectiveness of this system means the driver has to do less work and it also helps reduce brake wear.

The cab structure itself is new, too, with doors that are triple-sealed and inset into the cab sides instead of extending into the roof. This new design helps block out noise, making the Chevy HD and its GMC sibling the quietest heavy-duty trucks on the market.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

2014- BMW-328d- DIESEL SEDAN

When BMW introduced the 2009 335d, it was touted as a great blend of performance and fuel economy. In truth, most diesel buyers are more fuel-economy focused, but at the time, BMW was gingerly testing the diesel waters with one engine for the American market. And since that engine had to be powerful enough to motivate the much heavier X5 SUV, BMW selected a 3.0-liter six that was too large to deliver fuel-economy bragging rights in the smaller and lighter 3-series sedan. German autobahn is one of the last places where you can drive as fast as you want.
By the end of this summer, BMW will solve this problem by introducing the 328d, powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder turbo-diesel developing 180 horsepower and 280 lb-ft of torque. This engine still delivers sufficient performance to accelerate to 60 mph in about seven seconds and will come only with the excellent eight-speed ZF automatic transmission.

A 3-series BMW with VW Jetta TDI Fuel Economy? BMW says that fuel economy, which is not yet finalized, should improve by at least 20 percent over that of the gas-fueled 328i automatic, which is rated at 22 mpg in the city and 34 on the highway. That calculates to about 28 and 40 mpg, and BMW is suggesting that the highway number might come in as high as 45.

The engine that achieves this economy is the N47 that has been around in Europe for years. It has an aluminum block and head with a single, twin-scroll turbocharger featuring electronically controlled variable exhaust geometry to minimize turbo lag. Peak boost pressure is 22 psi, and the direct-injection system squirts fuel into the cylinders at up to 26,000 psi.

Two Tanks Are Better Than One

Meeting American smog standards in a car the size of the 328d requires the addition of a urea reduction catalyst to control NOx emissions. A tank located near the trunk holds sufficient AdBlue fluid to last between normal oil-change intervals, or somewhere between 6000 and 10,000 miles. Adding fluid is easy because the nozzle is next to the diesel fuel filler under an enlarged flap. That’s a good thing, because the EPA regulations require that the car not start if the AdBlue tank is empty. BMW promises there will be ample warnings as the fluid level nears depletion.

Our brief drive of the 328d showed it to have the quiet and refined feel of most modern diesels. At cruising speeds, the diesel chatterings aren’t really audible unless the windows are down, and a relaxed rumble is perceptible under acceleration. Given the diesel’s tall gearing, you’ll find the engine spending most of its time between 1000 and 2000 rpm.

Less gas  but speeddiesel of Thrust

Although it likely will be the slowest 3-series on the market—a 10th or two behind the upcoming 320i 2.0-liter gas turbo—the diesel is plenty quick for everyday driving, and its copious low-end torque makes off-the-line surges effortless. The das auto star is quite responsive unless you quickly slap your foot from the brake to the accelerator at a green light. That results in about a half-second delay before the boost picks up and the thrust begins. For critical launch situations, the astute driver will learn to brake-torque the 328d.

Interestingly, in Europe the 3-series with this engine is called the 320d, but in the American market it will carry 328i levels of equipment to justify its designation. Prices haven’t yet been set, but BMW says the 328d’s base price will be less than $40,000, which means about a $3000 bump over the cost of a 328i. The diesel will be available with xDrive all-wheel drive and in the 3-series wagon (xDrive only).

BMW plans to offer a new six-cylinder diesel in the 5-series at about the same time. That one will have 255 horsepower and about 400 lb-ft of heavy metal . One can easily imagine these two engines eventually providing diesel options throughout BMW’s sedan and SUV lines. das auto are BMW’s European buyers already choose diesels. We’ll see how far the trend goes in America with broader availability of compression ignition in the lineup.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014


Car brands such as Scion and MINI work hard to cultivate a youthful image and court young car buyers. But according IHS Automotive, Dodge has been around since the early days of the auto industry. In the past couple of decades, it has revitalized itself to be a producer of aggressively styled and performance-oriented vehicles.Dodge had the youngest buyers on average of any nonluxury car brand in 2013. And despite the appeal of cars such as the Challenger to baby boomers, the number of 25- to 34-year-olds that buy Dodge vehicles (14.4 percent) is the highest in the industry.

The average age of a Dodge buyer is 48.6 years, followed by Scion, Mazda and Mitsubishi. IHS said that the Durango and Charger attract the youngest Dodge purchasers, at 45.6 and 46.8 years, respectively

On the other end of the age spectrum, even though Buick has worked to change its image as a codger’s car, it has the oldest buyers among nonluxury brands, with an average age of 60 years old or higher. And Buick was the only nonluxury make with the highest percentage of 75-plus buyers, 19.2 percent.

In the luxury category, Land Rover has the youngest buyers, while Lincoln has the oldest.

Land Rover buyers are the youngest on average among luxury, nonexotic makes, followed by Infiniti. The average age of the typical Land Rover buyer is just under 50, and the LR4 model has the lowest average-aged buyer at 46.
IHS reported that the average age of Infiniti buyers has dropped by more than a year since 2011, thanks to the popularity of the JX crossover, whose buyers have an average age of 47.1 years. And even though the Infiniti QX56 and QX80 are the largest vehicles available from the brand, they attract the youngest buyers: 45 and 46 years old, respectively.

At the other end of the spectrum in the luxury space, Lincoln, Cadillac and Lexus appeal to the oldest buyers. The typical Lincoln customer is 61, oldest in the industry and virtually unchanged from three years ago. While the Town Car, with an average customer age of 67, has been discontinued, the typical MKS buyer is now 63, up from 61 three years ago. - See more at:

The average age of all new-car buyers in 2013 was just under 52 years old, up slightly from two years ago and an increase of one year from 2009. IHS said one reason for this is that the ages of people registering new vehicles aren't always the same as the people driving it. Parents often buy a car for their kids but register it in their own name,

Sunday, May 18, 2014


The Nissan Leaf is the world's first 100-percent electric, zero-emission car designed for the mass market. With its advanced powertrain, Nissan Leaf provides a totally new driving experience, with its smooth and responsive acceleration, stable handling, and quietness. Incorporating the latest IT systems, Nissan Leaf is always connected to driving support functions for a secure and convenient ownership experience. Nissan Leaf was launched in December 2010 in Japan and the United States, and in 2011 in Europe and other markets. The Leaf has won numerous international accolades, including the prestigious 2011 European Car of the Year, 2011 World Car of the Year and 2011-12 Car of the Year Japan awards. 

The Nissan LEAF® is 100% electric. Its 24 kWh lithium-ion battery, stores and provides power for the motor. The motor provides 187 lb-ft of torque right off the line, and 107 horsepower—getting you to your destination in an efficient manner.Zero Tailpipe Emissions ,The tailpipe of small, big, or even hybrid cars releases tons of CO2 emissions every year. The Nissan LEAF® doesn’t even have a tailpipe. 

The Leaf gets 126/101 city/hwy MPGe, The average American drives less than 33 miles a day. With an average range of 84 miles, the Nissan LEAF® takes you 2½ times that distance on a single charge. Quick Charge Port,Charging the Nissan LEAF® in under 30 minutes, the quick-charge port lets you plug into high-speed chargers, and gives you charging that takes minutes instead of hours. 

B-mode (Regenerative Braking Drive Mode).The Regenerative Braking System captures energy while you coast or brake, and recycles it back to the power supply. Shift the advanced drive selector into B-Mode to further increase regenerative braking force, and brake response. Whether you’re accelerating or braking, the power meter always displays whether you’re using power or gaining it.

EXTERIOR 17" 5-Spoke Aluminum-Alloy Wheels ,The Nissan LEAF® meets the road on 17” 5-spoke aluminum-alloy wheels.Aerodynamic LED headlights Light emitting diode (LED) headlights use less energy than traditional headlights, and are specially designed to redirect airflow away from the side mirrors to reduce wind noise and drag.

Automatic On/Off Headlights,A sensor detects the level of light you are driving in and turns the LED headlights on or off automatically, when necessary.Fog Lights Integrated into the front bumper, the fog lights are designed to create a low, wide projection to increase visibility under any conditions.

Dual Power Heated Outside Mirrors Easily adjustable standard dual power heated outside mirrors provide clear visibility. Charge Door For quick and easy access to the charge port or available quick charge port, just press a button on your Nissan Intelligent Key® to automatically open the charge door. The lockable charge port is now equipped with an inner light, making it easier to charge your Nissan LEAF® at night.

Aerodynamic Underbody and Rear Diffuser A flat, aerodynamic underbody and rear diffuser enhance performance by allowing air to flow smoothly underneath the Nissan LEAF®.Photovoltaic Solar-Panel Rear Spoiler The Nissan LEAF® photovoltaic solar-panel rear spoiler converts sunlight into energy to help power vehicle accessories.

Top INTERIOR Nissan Navigation System .The standard Nissan Navigation System is a smart, straightforward technology that makes driving your Nissan LEAF® an ultra-efficient and confident experience. Remotely check on your battery charge, begin charging, see estimated driving range and activate the climate control system with CARWINGS®. 

Leather-appointed seats,The leather-appointed, heated front and rear seats offer you and your passengers exceptional comfort and style.The transceiver system conveniently consolidates the functions of up to three individual transmitters on the rearview mirror. With the HomeLink® Universal Transceiver, the driver is able to control a personalized combination of garage doors, security gates, and house lighting.

Nissan Advanced Air Bag System (AABS) includes dual-stage supplemental front air bags with seat belt sensors and an occupant-classification sensor. The inflation rate of these dual-stage air bags adjusts depending on crash severity and seat belt usage. In addition, two supplemental air bags are built into the front seats to offer side impact protection and move with you as you adjust your seating position. Also, roof-mounted curtain side impact supplemental air bags help provide head protection for both rows of outboard occupants. 

Thee braking system responds automatically to changing conditions. ABS helps you maintain control by working to prevent wheel lockup during emergency situations.This standard feature—sometimes called stability control—continuously monitors your steering and braking actions and compares them to the vehicle's motion. If the system detects oversteer or understeer, it reduces motor speed and/or applies brake pressure to specific wheels, helping to keep the vehicle on its steered path. 

When the standard Traction Control System senses drive-wheel spin, it responds by reducing motor power or applying brake pressure to help maintain traction.Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)Take away the guesswork when it comes to your tire pressure. The Tire Pressure Monitoring System alerts you when the pressure is too low in one of your tires. When you're filling your tires, Easy-Fill Tire Alert lets you know with a friendly beep of the of the horn when you've reached the correct pressure. 

Thursday, May 15, 2014


Mercedes-Benz is no stranger to electrification, having already wowed us with the 740-horsepower SLS. As impressive as that car is, though, the astronomical price  back to 19 century us mortals. 

The B-Class was born of Daimler’s partnership with Tesla Motors, which provided much of the drivetrain stuffed inside this compact four-door. But then, at $41,000 (before the $7,500 federal EV tax credit), you’d expect that. Pricey? Yes, but on par with the BMW i3, another car meant to convince upscale buyers that going out with green in style.

Daimler’s raided the Tesla parts bin before to bring us the Smart For Two Electric Drive. That car was utterly unremarkable, but Mercedes seems to have gotten it right with the B-Class Electric Drive. The 28 kilowatt-hour pack gives the B-Class an EPA-rated range of 82 miles–comparable to the Honda FIT EV and Fiat 500e and a bit better than the Ford Focus Electric. It’s also got an 8-year, 100,000-mile warranty. Plug it into a 240-volt line like your dryer uses and you’re good to go in 3.5 hours. You’re definitely gonna want 240, because if you plug it into 120 (like your PC or mac uses), you’re looking at 32 hours to fully charge the battery.
This is all standard fare for an EV of this sort. What makes the B-Class unusual is its automatic regenerative braking system. It’s a clever riff on the radar system Mercedes developed for its adaptive cruise control. With the B-Class Electric, Mercedes applied the tech to the brakes, creating a system that varies the intensity of regenerative braking to suit the circumstances. If the system senses you’re approaching the car ahead just a bit too quickly, for example, it ramps up the regen to slow the car; if some nitwit cuts you off, it clamps down with more authority to avoid a collision. The automatic regen mode is one of four–the others being D+ for heavy regen, D for moderate and D- for light–you can choose from to suit your driving style and preference.

We spent a little time (too little for a proper review) driving a B-Class Electric Drive and can say the system works. Driving down a winding road electric motor with nothing ahead but curves, the system was completely unobtrusive. Ease off the accelerator and the car slows as if under engine braking. There’s no sudden decrease in speed, no rocking and rolling movement. Later, when a VW Jetta cut in front of us at an intersection, the B-Class instantly upped the resistance to slow the car. The downside is the feeling through the pedal in auto mode was inconsistent as the system responded to traffic and obstacles, but not so much that it was distracting.

‘Range Plus’ for Added Range, Sport Mode for Added Fun
Another nifty trick is the car’s Range Plus option. When activated, it temporarily bumps the battery capacity by about 15 percent to provide another 18 miles of range, according to Mercedes-Benz. To tap that added capacity, you push a button on the dashboard before charging the car, telling the system to charge the batteries to their absolute capacity. Mercedes said intermittent use of this feature won’t adversely impact battery life, but using it to regularly “max-out” the pack will diminish charging capacity over time. The idea is to provide just a little extra range for those occasions when you might need it. .

This being the modern age, there’s also an app that allows you to check all of its charging metrics, or find the nearest charge station. When the B-Class is plugged in, you can use the app to activate the climate control to pre-cool or pre-heat the car before you arrive.

Developed in tandem with American Tesla Motors, the 2014 Mercedes-Benz B-class EV has a definite focus on the driver experience. With its front-wheel drive, the B-class’ 28 kWh battery pack powers the electric engine, developing a respectable 177 horsepower and 251 lb.-ft. of torque at 0 rpm. This allows for a 0-60 time of under 8 seconds–it’ll certainly put a smile on drivers’ faces. Fun, too, is the “S” drive mode on the B-class, allowing for sharper throttle response and a more dynamic experience. However, the small capacity of the B’s electric motor means that range is limited to a mere 85 miles, or under a third of the top-tier Tesla’s range. Keeping in mind that the B-class is meant to be a city runabout, this range seems understandable.

Leaving sport mode engaged, Mercedes says, cut the car’s range by 10 percent, but for a short-distance drive, that’s a tempting trade-off. In sport, you can still get some tire squeal out of a turn. When in regular mode, however, the car is relaxed. Acceleration from a stoplight requires serious depression of the drive-by-wire accelerator pedal before you even feel any propulsion. Then again, one doesn’t purchase a hatchback EV for performance, and when making a nervous merge onto a highway, the B-Class’s Tesla motor picks up when necessary. For driving in traffic or through towns, the accelerator mapping makes the starts smooth and elegant, for which you can partially forgive the otherwise subdued acceleration.

The styling is a bit… bland, but then it is a B-Class. If you have no idea what that is, that’s because Mercedes has not widely sold the B-Class in the United States. Diesel and gas variations are in Europe, and Mercedes has long used the platform for its alt-fuel experiments, but the car is new to the U.S. It’s a practical vehicle, a design that marries the convenience of a minivan with the size of a hatchback in something akin to a crossover utility vehicle.

Luxury and Plenty of Visibility
Inside, the car is nicely appointed, bordering on luxurious. It’s roomy and comfortable, with loads of headroom and plenty of space for four adults. In an era of stylishly short windows and sketchy visibility to the rear, the B-Class stands tall, literally. A thick three-point steering wheel and small details like the stitching around the leather give the car a sporty, luxurious feel that belies its practical sensibilities. You’re reminded of the car’s humble origins if you tap the plastic wood trim, but the car feels solid–the doors close with a satisfying thud–and everything works with just enough smoothness to know this is a proper Mercedes.

For those seeking maximum utility, you can fold the rear seats down to open up nearly 52 cubic feet of storage. Before adding options, the B-Class comes with a long list of features that make the car feel like its price. It comes with the blind-spot radar that flashes in your rear-view mirror if something is in that space, parking sensors, hill-start assistive braking, window and knee airbags, and navigation.

Unlike other cool alt-fuel B-Class models we’ve seen, the electric version is actually headed for showrooms. Look for it on the East and West Coast this summer, and nationwide in the first half of next year.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014


In honor of serviceman and servicewomen the Jeep® brand has acknowledged the scarifice to their country with the new Patriot Freedom Edition, which has been built off the Latitude model.

The interior is amazing throughout and can be clearly seen in the unique cloth low-back bucket seats in Dark Slate Gray with an embroidered "Star" logo highlighted by silver accent stitching.  Uconnect® System with Navigation by Garmin.

The Uconnect® 130 System comes standard with four speakers. Or, opt for the cornerstone of communication with the available Uconnect 430N radio with Navigation by Garmin® and Uconnect® Voice Command with Bluetooth®. The available SiriusXM Travel Link+ features real-time gas prices, weather radar map, sports, traffic and movie schedules.

When you need to stop and get your bearings, an auto dimming rearview mirror with LED Map lights is ready to help you find your way.

It also has a tire pressure monitoring display system comes standard on the Patriot Freedom Edition, so you'll always drive with the utmost confidence.

It has standard adjustable roof rail crossbars can carry extra gear on your next adventure. They support the installation of an available Mopar® roof box carrier, roof top cargo carrier and roof-mounted ski or snowboard carrier.The weathered "Freedom Star" decals are symbolic of the white five-pointed star that serves as the national symbol of all motor vehicles assigned to tactical units. The decals on the hood and passenger rear quarter exemplify strength and freedom.                                                              
The upright Jeep® grille with its seven slots standing at attention is accented with black cross hatch texture. The body-color fascias with bright insert underline your style.Oscar Mike hard badges

Oscar Mike means “On the Move" or "On Mission". In military code, O stands for Oscar and M stands for Mike. The Oscar Mike Freedom Edition is an expression of support of those who have served. The unique Oscar Mike hard door badge represents honor and courage.                                                                                                                                   
This Jeep can adapt to any environment with 17-inch rugged Mineral Gray painted aluminum wheels with matching center cap and P215/65R17 outline white letter Goodyear tires (4x4 only). An available Jeep® 4WD model and the All-Weather Capability Group is included – so you'll be prepared for almost anything.Go farther

Rooted in tradition the Patriot has classic Jeep® brand styling and an adventurous attitude supported with advanced powertrains and up to 30 highway mpg+. It's a great value and has the capability you need to explore more.

Other Awesome features of the Patriot include:
2014 Jeep Patriot Freedom Edition with Steel Tow Hooks
Heavy-duty forged steel tow hooks (4WD models) are perfect for helping pull less-capable vehicles out of ditches and include two front-mounted and one rear-frame mounted tow hooks.

Daytime Running Headlamps on the 2014 Jeep Patriot Freedom Edition
Daytime running headlamps (4WD model) automatically switch on when the vehicle is moving forward to provide you with improved Safety & Security.

Engine Block Heater on the 2014 Jeep Patriot Freedom Edition
An engine block heater provides you with improved warm-up time and cold-start fuel consumption on cold days when you need it most.

This Patriot helps protect you when you're on your stateside mission. Like all Patriot models, the Freedom Edition comes standard with supplemental side seat airbags+, as well as an array of Safety & Security features for added peace of mind.

Monday, May 12, 2014


The Trax has so many new features available like the connectivity of USB ports and other impressive options that make the Trax a must have for the family!                                                                                                                                                          
It's available transmission is the six-speed 6T40 Hydra-Matic, which can take its sweet time to downshift. Upshifts and downshifts can be manually commanded via a tap shift switch that is awkwardly positioned atop the console-mounted shift lever. Front-wheel drive is standard, and a variable all-wheel-drive system is optional. The AWD system adds a couple hundred pounds to the curb weight, with vehicles so equipped tipping the scales at an estimated 3300 metal pounds.

As you might expect for a general-purpose vehicle, the Trax understeers solidly. Its light-effort, rack-mounted electric power steering, however, provides ample feedback, and this little crossover SUV remains composed even on bumpy roads. It does a good job of shielding its occupants from bumps and uneven surfaces. 

These passengers will appreciate the generous interior space. The Trax is short, spanning a mere 168.5 inches nose to tail, but it’s tall, at 65.9 inches. At 69.9 inches, it is relatively wide. As a result, the cabin feels roomy and airy, and there’s ample room for four aboard. Cargo volume with all seats raised is generous at 18.7 cubic feet, and it can be expanded to 48.4 cubic feet with the rear seats folded. And even though visibility is good, the Trax enhances it with a standard rearview camera, but we wish the trajectory lines swiveled with steering angle.

The passengers can fiddle with a plethora of telematics and connectivity features. Depending on trim package, the Trax is available with 4G LTE connectivity, USB ports, the MyLink system with a large touch screen, and Siri “eyes free” service. The interior features multiple storage areas.The list of standard and optional equipment is impressive, but one trait is distinctly lacking: style. In our test car, the interior was a sea of gray, with way too much hard plastic. But this is a Chevy, and there need to be ways for its Buick sibling to set itself apart. We are not sure this kind of interior ambience will cut it in this segment. The Trax cabin is better than the toylike Nissan Juke’s, but it falls far short of the new Kia Soul’s.

Offered in LS, LT, and LTZ trim, the compact Chevy crossover will hit the market in late 2014. As mentioned, we expect prices to start just below $20,000. The Trax is a comfortable, competent offering, but it doesn’t deliver the same level of style as its competitors from Nissan and Kia. However, with an agreeable price and overall inoffensive persona, expect to see these rocking and rolling soon  everywhere, from the suburbs to town's and all big apple city's .

Friday, May 9, 2014


At Chevrolet, groundbreaking design is what drives our engineering. This dedication has landed the 2014 Corvette Stingray and the 2014 Cruze Turbo Diesel among Ward’s 10 Best Engines, as judged by WardsAuto World magazine. With these awards, it just goes to show how Chevrolet is continuining to raise the bar on innovation.             

Get ready for a new wave of technology that marries maximized efficiency and impressive performance. With 46 MPG highway, the 2014 Cruze Clean Turbo Diesel boasts the best fuel economy of any gasoline or diesel car in America. It offers the performance of a V-6 with the efficiency of a 4-cylinder. That because it comes equipped with the very latest clean diesel technology, which helps reduce emissions without sacrificing power..Make an impression

2014 Cruze Eco FrontCruze has auto critics salivating over its exterior design and pleasing proportions, but trust us, even your neighbors are going to stop and take notice. Centered by the strong, attention-grabbing grille, its swept-back lamps lead the eye across sculpted fenders, around the sides and back again. And don’t forget that those curves, lines and angles do more than just please the eye and turn heads. They improve aerodynamics; in the end optimizing fuel efficiency† and helping you get the most out every gallon.

Turn up the volume with the RS Appearance Package, available for LT and LTZ. On the exterior, this package includes unique front and rear fascias, rocker moldings, and a rear spoiler giving your Cruze the look to match the feeling behind the wheel. Even the foglamps† are enhanced, with sleek chrome around the lights.

Cruze Clean Turbo Diesel beats out the competition, starting with a 2.0L turbocharged clean diesel engine which boasts an SAE-certified 151 horsepower and 264 lb.ft. of “low-end” torque — more than the Volkswagen Jetta TDI. In fact, Cruze Clean Turbo Diesel is better than Jetta TDI in 8 separate categories.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014


The Volvo S60’s exterior has changed considerably, which takes a disappointing turn toward the mainstream. When the current-generation S60 debuted, the shape  flowing body and rolling, fly like eagle stlye look. Volvo has undone much of that, especially up front. Gone all metal  heavy , sculpted headlights and separate running-light slashes; in their place are a pair of Chicklet-shaped, achingly horizontal headlights look like panther eyes  a widened grille stuffed with an enlarged Volvo badge. The tweaks do add up to a front end that appears lower and wider, but the outgoing car’s imaginative styling has been dulled significantly.

Volvo did not alter the S60 rear much, although all models now come with integrated dual exhaust outlets. The taillights now get LED accents, too. Inside, there is a new headliner, plus new “silk metal” trim around the air vents and some secondary controls. The car’s roster of interior colors and wood trim has been updated, and front sport seats now are available. Speaking of sportiness, the S60 R-Design’s lowered sport suspension now is optional on non-R-Design S60s, as are paddle shifters.

The big news for the S60’s interior is technology—it has it. Well, more of it, anyway. First up, the infrared-based touch-screen infotainment setup Volvo previewed at the 2013 Consumer Electronics show is making its production appearance this year. Dubbed Sensus, the setup adapts Volvo’s existing seven-inch dashboard display to respond to touch inputs using infrared beams; break the beams and the system calculates where your “touch” was intended. We tried this system as retrofitted to a 2013 XC60 crossover at CES and found it to work well, and because inputs don’t rely on capacitive touch like normal touch screens, users can wear gloves. A USB 3G/4G card or occupants’ mobile phones provide the system with internet connectivity, which can be used to surf the web (when the car is parked) and access internet radio, Google maps and search, and weather info. Sensus also features a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot so multiple passengers can browse the internet.

Another leap forward in the tech department comes courtesy of a newly available digital gauge cluster. Volvo’s Adaptive Digital Display replaces the S60’s analog gauges with a reconfigurable TFT screen with three driver-selectable themes: Elegance, Eco, and Performance. Elegance provides the look of a traditional gauge cluster; Eco brings an eco meter and fuel-consumption info set against a green background; and Performance places a big tachometer front and center, with speed displayed digitally in its center, and a power meter set against a red background.

Since you can’t discuss any new Volvo product without discussing safety, here’s the 411 on the S60’s stuff designed to keep its occupants from needing to call 911. New for 2014 is Active High Beam Control, which allows drivers to keep the S60’s brights on at all times. When the system senses approaching traffic, it selectively shades the beam to avoid blinding other road users. Audi’s impending LED-based setup (previewed at this year’s CES show), which selectively darkens individual LEDs to shade out oncoming traffic or pedestrians, is similar, but Volvo’s setup employs mechanical shading. 

Volvo also is touting a Cornering Light feature, which throws more light in the direction the wheels are turned at low speeds to help drivers traverse dark gateways or alley entrances. While certainly useful, the tech is hardly an innovation—corner lamps that illuminate whenever turn signals are engaged were a staple of 1970s-era American luxury cars. Otherwise, Volvo’s full suite of advanced safety tech returns to the 2014 S60, including City Safety auto-braking, Pedestrian Detection, blind-spot monitoring, and cross-traffic alert.

The S60’s range of turbocharged inline five- and six-cylinder engines and choice of front- or all-wheel drive apparently are untouched. And in case wagon lovers out there were curious, the Europe-only V60—the S60’s awesomely shaped five-door sibling—also gets the new front-end treatment. Volvo isn’t yet showing off a refreshed S60 R-Design, but the S60 variant we can’t wait to see is a production iteration of the totally insane, M5-challenging, 508-hp S60 Polestar concept. Please build it, Volvo, even if it gets the 2014 S60’s less-interesting face. 

Tuesday, May 6, 2014


Thankfully for the GM-owned brand, there have been signs of a recovery. One such indicator is this Cascada, a handsome fabric-roofed convertible largely based on the compact Opel Astra. For its part, Opel is wasting no time in promoting its promise, boldly insisting that its Cascada is an honest competitor to the likes of the Audi A5, the BMW 4-series, and even the Mercedes-Benz E-class cabriolet. But is it? We drove the Cascada to find out.

The Opel Cascada starts out with an inherent disadvantage—its platform. The BMW and the Benz, of course, stand on rear-wheel-drive architecture, and the Audi A5 is spun off Audi's medium-to-large MLB modular-longitudinal architecture. The Cascada, by contrast, is built on GM's Global Delta platform and thus shares its underpinnings with more pedestrian vehicles that include the Chevrolet Cruze and the Buick Verano.

From that starting point, GM's Rüsselsheim-based engineering team stiffened the Cascada’s structure with a V-shaped underbody brace, resulting in torsional rigidity far superior to that of the Opel Astra cabriolet, the Cascada's immediate predecessor. But this stiffness comes at a price: The 1.6-liter gas turbo version we drove tips the scales at an estimated 3850 pounds, and the diesel actually comes in at more than 4000.

We prefer the Opel’s more-traditional fabric top to a retractable hardtop; it doesn't just look better, it also leaves more trunk space and is lighter. Two variations are offered—a standard top and a premium top with an additional acoustic layer—but both feature a glass rear window with defroster. We will confirm Opel's claims that the vehicle is as quiet as a coupe, and the roof can be opened or closed by remote control and at speeds up to 30 mph. The Cascada is indeed an all-season vehicle, and a well-packaged one, with a rear seat that’s sufficiently roomy for two.

Helping it battle the traditional luxury brands, exemplary workmanship is one of the Cascada's high points. Higher-priced versions feature beautiful leather, as well as real stitching atop the dashboard. And in typical European fashion, where customers take delight in factory-ordering a vehicle to their individual taste, the options list is long, and encompasses such premium features as ventilated seats. But the dashboard will look familiar to anyone who has recently driven a GM vehicle, down to the three-spoke steering wheel whose sporty style is pretty much nullified by its sheer size.

But that’s OK, because the Cascada isn’t sporty. The droptop Opel’s suspension delivers what you’d expect from a nose-heavy front-driver (think Nissan Altima) and the steering, while linear in its response, conveys minimal road feedback. Compared to the VW Eos, not to mention the aforementioned premium convertibles, the driving experience feels languid and lusterless, lacking crispness and enthusiasm. Reaching the limits of the chassis is difficult anyway, given the lack of punch provided by the diminutive 1.6-liter turbo four.

Rated at 168 horsepower and 192 lb-ft of torque (207 lb-ft in overboost mode), it’s said to propel a six-speed-manual Cascada to 62 mph in a lazy 9.6 seconds. (We figure we could achieve a 9.5-second 0–60 time, for what it’s worth.) Top speed is an ungoverned 138 mph. On the plus side, no rush of power at the top end of the tach means there’s no turbo lag to speak of. The driver needs to maintain momentum just to keep up with traffic, keeping revs in the range from 1650–3200 rpm where max torque is generated. The six-speed manual is pleasantly light, but most customers are likely to opt for the six-speed automatic, which is even pokier.

Somewhat surprisingly, there are even less powerful engines in the lineup, including two variations of a 1.4-liter turbo four with 118 or 138 horsepower. The Cascada's top-of-the-line engine will be a 197-hp, 1.6-liter turbo, but for now performance-minded buyers are forced to turn to diesels. Opel offers a 2.0-liter turbo-diesel with 163 or 192 horsepower and 218 or 258 lb-ft of torque.

One addition could change the Cascada's character: A truly powerful, top-of-the-line engine such as the 2.0-liter turbo that makes 250 horsepower in the top-of-the-line Verano Turbo and 276 horsepower in the Opel Astra OPC. Why do we care? Because the Cascada could—and should—be offered in the U.S. market in Buick form. The alignment between the Opel and Buick brands is high on the list of GM's priorities. Mark Adams, chief designer for both brands, says that he could "imagine the Cascada as a Buick." We agree, as it looks good, it’s roomy, and the quality is right—it just needs the right powertrain. Now, the Cascada won't turn Opel—or Buick—into an Audi competitor, but it is a significant step in the right direction.

Monday, May 5, 2014


Audi | Autonomous TTSAudi was the first automaker to unveil a fully autonomous vehicle: a self-driving 2009 TTS that was developed in conjunction with the Center for Automotive Research at Stanford, Sun Microsystems, and Volkswagen's Electronic Research Lab. Audi set a goal for the TTS to race up Pikes Peak, similar to the way it would with a professional rally driver at the wheel. It accomplished this feat in 2010.
Autonomous Audi TTS Pikes Peak Research VehicleAn autonomous car,also known as a driverless car, driver-free car, self-driving car or robot car,is an autonomous vehicle capable of fulfilling the human transportation capabilities of a traditional carKITT, the autonomous Pontiac Trans Am in the 1982 TV series Knight Rider, was sentient and autonomous.

The 1990 film Total Recall, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger, features taxis called Johnny Cabs controlled by artificial intelligence in the car or the android drivers.. As an autonomous vehicle, it is capable of sensing its environment and navigating without human input. Robotic cars exist mainly as prototypes and demonstration systems. 

Currently, the only self-driving vehicles that are commercially available are open-air shuttles for pedestrian zones that operate at 12.5 miles per hour (20.1 km/h). Google’s autonomous vehicles have logged over 700,000 miles around Silicon Valley and, as it turns out, Volvo also has its own fleet of self-driving cars driving the roads of Gothenburg, Sweden. Volvo has initiated a program in which 100 self-driving Volvos will be operated around the city in everyday driving conditions by regular consumers.

The pilot program of 100 cars will be limited to about 50 kilometers of selected roadways in and around Gothenburg. These roads are typical commuter arteries and include motorway conditions and frequent queues. The program is currently under development and the first cars available for consumer testing are expected to be on the roads in Gothenburg by 2017.

Autonomous vehicles sense their surroundings with such techniques as radar, lidar, GPS, and computer vision. Advanced control systems interpret sensory information to identify appropriate navigation paths, as well as obstacles and relevant signage. Some autonomous vehicles update their maps based on sensory input, allowing the vehicles to keep track of their position even when conditions change or when they enter uncharted environments.The goal is that autonomous vehicles will one day increase efficiency of the roadways and allow drivers to relax or work on other tasks while the vehicle does the driving. The project will also include autonomous parking, allowing the driver to walk away from the car at the parking entrance while the vehicle finds a vacant spot and parks by itself.

Sunday, May 4, 2014


For 2014, the GMC Acadia sees just a few changes. All Acadias gain an additional pair of charge-only USB ports, while the Denali trim picks up standard forward collision alert and lane departure warning systems.

GMC's family hauler is ideal for transporting your big brood to the lake or hauling a full load of provisions away from your local big box store. Large crossovers are good like that, combining much of the passenger- and cargo-hauling abilities of a minivan with the rugged good looks and (when equipped with all-wheel drive) the foul-weather capability of a traditional SUV. In this highly competitive segment, the Acadia stands as one of the best picks.

In addition to its spacious interior, the GMC Acadia earns high marks for its comfortable ride, easy-going driving demeanor and 288-horsepower V6, which provides ample thrust for daily commutes and long interstate runs alike. Of course, the Acadia is not exactly unique, as Buick's Enclave and Chevy's Traverse share the same basic platform, engine and seating layout, and differ mainly in their styling and equipment details. The Chevy has the lowest starting price, while the luxury-themed Buick packs the most standard features. The Acadia offers an agreeable middle ground, along with ruggedly handsome styling that reflects the brand's truck heritage. Choosing one of the three will likely come down to your styling preference, pricing and your experience at the dealership.

Although the GMC Acadia and its cousins are tough to beat if you need lots of space (and don't really want a minivan), we'd also suggest considering the highly regarded Ford Flex and the more athletic handling and nearly as spacious Mazda CX-9. The Dodge Durango, Hyundai Santa Fe and Nissan Pathfinder are also solid picks in this price range, though they don't offer quite as much interior room as the aforementioned models. With so many choices out there for a three-row crossover, narrowing down your list of candidates can be tough. For families who need eight-passenger seating above all else, though, it's hard to go wrong with the 2014 GMC Acadia.

The SLE-1 comes standard with 18-inch wheels, automatic headlights, a rearview camera, rear parking sensors, rear privacy glass, keyless entry, cruise control, rear manual air-conditioning control, a leather-wrapped tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, OnStar telematics, Bluetooth phone connectivity, a 6.5-inch touchscreen display and a six-speaker sound system with a CD player, satellite radio, HD radio, a USB port and an auxiliary audio jack. There are also dual USB charge-only ports on the rear of the center console.

The SLE-2 adds remote vehicle start, a power liftgate, an eight-way power driver seat (with two-way lumbar), a two-way power passenger seat (manual recline), an auto-dimming rearview mirror and the Intellilink electronics interface that includes voice controls, Bluetooth audio connectivity and smartphone app integration.

The SLT-1 adds 19-inch wheels, foglamps, variable-effort steering, heated mirrors, tri-zone automatic climate control, leather upholstery in the first and second rows (third row vinyl), heated front seats, an enhanced trip computer, rear-seat audio controls and a 10-speaker Bose sound system.The SLT-2 includes power-folding mirrors, driver memory functions, an eight-way power passenger seat and access to additional options. These add-ons include ventilated front seats and the Technology package, which adds xenon headlights, a head-up display and cargo area audio controls.

The Denali includes all of the SLT-2's optional items, plus unique styling flourishes inside and out, 20-inch chrome-clad wheels, a panoramic sunroof, forward collision alert system, lane departure warning system, increased sound insulation and a wood-trimmed steering wheel.

That sunroof is optional on all other Acadia trims except the SLE-1. The same goes for the rear-seat entertainment system, which includes a Bose surround-sound audio system and a 110-volt power outlet. The SLT trims and the Denali can also be equipped with a navigation system.

The EPA estimates a front-drive Acadia will return 19 mpg combined (17 city/24 highway). All-wheel-drive models drop to 18 combined (16 city/23 highway).

The SLT-2 and Denali also feature standard side blind-spot monitoring and cross-traffic alert. The Denali comes standard with forward collision alert and lane departure warning systems, which are optional on the SLTs.

In government crash tests, the Acadia earned a top five-star rating for overall performance, with five out of five stars earned for total front-impact protection and five stars for total side-impact protection. The Acadia also fared well in Insurance Institute for Highway Safety crash tests, where it got the highest rating of "Good" in moderate-overlap frontal-offset, side-impact and roof-strength tests.

Front occupants will enjoy abundant head- and legroom, as will second-row occupants, but the middle row seat cushions are mounted low, reducing comfort for adults. Sliding those seats all the way back alleviates this issue, but effectively kills third-row legroom. The slide release is also difficult to access. The narrow, flat-cushioned third-row seats are easily deployed and stowed, but are best suited to kids and smaller adults.