Top Story

Don't call it a minivan — 2022 Kia Carnival is a 'multi-purpose vehicle'


(February 25, 2021) IRVINE, Calif. — The all-new 2022 Kia Carnival Multi-Purpose Vehicle (MPV) replaces the outgoing Sedona minivan to become a multifaceted and unexpected companion.  Staking claim on the unoccupied space between SUV and family hauler, the Carnival arrives with a new name and is the first vehicle to be sold in the U.S. with Kia’s new logo displayed on its sculpted hood. It pushes the boundaries on expected fronts in much the same way the Kia K5 did to redefine what a midsize sedan should be.

2021 Cadillac Escalade

INDIANAOPLIS — My family has spent way too much time in our house during the last few months — because of COVID, winter temps, and admittedly, general laziness.  We needed to get away, to have a retreat.  With the completely redesigned 2021 Cadillac Escalade in the driveway and just two and a half hours between us in Indianapolis and the Potawatomi Inn at Pokagon State Park, we loaded up to go.

2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E

PHOENIX — There’s been quite a buzz about the new Mustang Mach-E, ever since it debuted at the 2019 Los Angeles Auto Show. Fast forward through 12 months of presidential-election fever, a global pandemic, and we finally got a week of seat time behind the wheel of Ford’s first mass-market all-electric SUV, and it bears the legendary Mustang pony badge fore and aft.

2021 Dodge Hellcat Redeye

PHOENIX — Last year, we tested the bargain-priced Dodge Charger R/T Scat Pack Plus, equipped with a 485-horsepower, 6.4-liter V-8 SRT 392 Hemi, paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission. That Charger was overshadowed by the attention-getting headlines of its more powerful big brother, the 707-horsepower Charger Hellcat.
Now for 2021, it’s no surprise that Dodge once again released a better and more powerful SRT version of its high-performing Charger.

Vehicle of the Week

2021 Lexus IS350 F Sport — Outstanding curb appeal photo

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

After living with an "Infrared" copy for a week we came to the conclusion that the compact 2021 IS350 F Sport is the best looking and most well-proportioned vehicle in the Lexus lineup. Granted, the RC is pretty darn hot, and the high-dollar LC luxury sports coupe has some legitimate bragging rights for modern design. But for instant curb appeal our vote is for the IS350 Sport — particularly in this outstanding shade of red.

Here's the Thing

Hyundai Veloster N gets 8-speed dual-clutch automatic for 2021

By Paul Borden

(February 23, 2021) Though the three-door configuration gets a lot of the attention, it is not the only thing that makes the 2021 Hyundai Veloster N a worthy competitor to any compact hatchback coming from its Asian rivals from Japan. With its turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine pumping out 275 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque to the front wheels, the Veloster N compares very well with much-heralded rivals like Honda’s Civic Type-R when it comes to performance and fun-to-drive quotient.

Severe winter weather sends gas prices soaring

AAA photo

(February 23, 2021) WASHINGTON, D.C. — Motorists are filling-up to some of the most expensive gas prices seen in over a year. With the forced shutdown of Gulf Coast and some Midwest refineries due to last week’s winter weather, gasoline stocks have tightened and gas prices have skyrocketed. On the week, 66% of state averages spiked by double digits (10–22 cents), driving the national average up by 13 cents to $2.63. That is the most expensive national average since October 2019, according to AAA.

Lexus on top, Porsche and Kia next, in J.D. Power dependability study

(February 21, 2021) Vehicle dependability is at an all-time high, with the overall level of problems cited by owners declining 10% from a year ago, according to the J.D. Power 2021 U.S. Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS), released Friday.

Inside the Industry

Ford Explorer King Ranch Edition brings Texas spirit to best-selling SUV

(February 25, 2021) DEARBORN, Mich. — Ford Explorer adds the first-ever King Ranch edition to its stable, giving midsize SUV customers an all-new rugged, premium appearance with the uncompromising quality, craftsmanship and authenticity of the iconic Texas ranch.

Jeep Launch Edition Wrangler Rubicon 392 with 470 hp starts at $74,995

(February 25, 2021) AUBURN HILLS, Mich. — The 2021 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon 392 — packed with 470 horsepower and 470 lb.-ft. of torque from its 6.4-liter V-8, full-time 4x4, functional hood scoop, a dual-mode performance exhaust, and a long list of premium features standard, including a sport steering wheel with shift paddles and leather-covered performance seats — is on-road and off-road ready for a price of $74,995 including destination charge.

Edsel B. Ford II’s Edsel and Ford Woody Wagon up for auction in Scottsdale

(February 25, 2021) SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. — Barrett-Jackson will sell a 1947 Ford Super Deluxe Custom Woody Wagon and a 1958 Edsel Bermuda Wagon from the personal collection of Edsel B. Ford II, great-grandson of Henry Ford, during the Scottsdale Auction at WestWorld of Scottsdale, March 20-27. Both wagons will sell at No Reserve and are autographed by Edsel B. Ford II.

Abandoned Car of the Week

On the Horizon

The Dodge Omni and Plymouth Horizon are subcompact cars that were produced by Chrysler from 1977 to 1990.The Omni and Horizon were reengineered variants of the European Chrysler Horizon and became the first front-wheel-drive economy cars to be built in the US. Marketed for 11 years with very few changes, around 2,500,000 Omnis and Horizons were built with the Plymouth badged versions more popular than the Dodge branded models. This mid-80s Horizon found in eastern North Carolina is perhaps awaiting a new owner for a total restoration.
(Photo by Jim Meachen)