Lexus CT 200h — Luxury hybrid hatchback

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

After six years the Lexus CT 200h purpose-built hybrid has less than 90,000 sales to its credit. But the niche vehicle soldiers on for a seventh year with a 2017 version offering luxury buyers a good looking compact hatchback rated at 42 miles per gallon in combined city and highway driving. Buyers find that the CT 200h's combination of attractive styling that has worn well over the years and upscale amenities is appealing, while its hatchback body style can accommodate a wide variety of cargo.

Nissan Pathfinder — Looking better than ever

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

Since its inception in the mid-1980s as Nissans first mass market sport utility the Pathfinder has displayed multiple personalities. It started life like all SUV's of the 1980s and early 90s as a body-on-frame truck, was switched to unibody construction for the second generation (1995-2004), then back to body-on-frame for the third generation (2005-2012), and back to unibody construction for the fourth generation that commenced with the 2013 model.

2017 Audi R8 V10

GOLDSBORO, N.C. — Before I could shut the car off coming back from a routine errand the neighbor lady was tapping on the passenger window asking if I would take her 14-year-old son for a ride. "He''s been dying to ride in that car, he loves cars and this is one of his favorites," she implored. So off we went in the 2017 Audi R8, which also garnered a lot of attention from adults during our test week.

2017 Chevrolet Cruze Hatch

PALM BEACH, Fla. — All new for 2017, the Chevrolet Cruze Hatchback joins its sedan sibling in delivering a world-class cabin, tons of technical doodads and solid fuel economy for a competitive price. It may not send droves of owners scampering to trade in their Civics, but it can certainly go toe to toe with the Honda, or any of the other Asian compacts for that matter.

Toyota Avalon — Loaded with safety, warranty protection

By David Finkelstein

Toyota Motors unveiled its four door, five passenger Avalon flagship automobile as a unique midsize offering to consumers worldwide more than 20 years ago. For 2017, this premium nameplate with class-leading roominess and comfort is showcased with either a hybrid powertrain or a conventional yet powerful V-6 engine.

2017 Genesis G90

INDIANAPOLIS — I remember when Hyundai occupied a little erector set of a display in the basement of Cobo Hall during Detroit’s North American International Auto Show.  Clearly, the Korean automaker has traveled great distances in the past couple of decades; it’s now one of the most respected global players.  It’s also come a long way since it launched the Genesis sedan in 2008 with a sub-$35,000 sticker.  Now a separate brand, Genesis goes after an elite class of luxury buyers with the G90.

2017 Infiniti Q50

PHOENIX — The Q50 is a compact entry-level luxury sedan and Infiniti’s best-selling vehicle. Introduced for the 2013 model year, it replaced the popular Infiniti G37 sedan. We weren’t fond of the new Q50 when it was introduced, and felt Infiniti took a step backward from both the G37 it replaced and competitors in the segment like Audi A4, BMW 3 Series, Jaguar XE and Mercedes-Benz C-Class sedans.

Honda Civic — Offering safety and reliability

By David Finkelstein

With some 1,000 (or so) independent U.S. Honda dealers dotting the country from coast-to-coast, the 10th generation 2017 Civic's are now being showcased in both Coupe and Sedan versions. The head turning and dramatic appearing all new sporty Civic design starts with its modern athletic stance and it's low, yet wide body proportions.

2017 Ford Fusion Hybrid

PHOENIX — Ford has made some key changes to the Fusion for its 2017 mid-cycle refresh, upping its game in the mid-sized hybrid sedan segment. While Ford decided not to make major changes to the overall looks of the Fusion, there is an all-new front end including new LED headlamps with LED accent strips. The grille is essentially the same shape, albeit smaller, with new options and fog lamps on the lower valance. The look is definitely sleeker and more aggressive.

Buick LaCrosse — Taking it up a notch

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

Buick has taken a giant step forward with the all-new 2017 LaCrosse — more sophisticated and refined than any full-sized Buick sedan in recent memory including the last generation LaCrosse.