2020 Toyota Yaris Hatchback — Meaningful update

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

Many people still have the perception that basic transportation means a stripped-down car carrying just the bare necessities minus any visage of creature comforts — a so-called entry level car that will take you from point A to point B in joyless fashion.

Honda Civic Si — Affordable performance

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

If you want fun-to-drive fuel-efficient sporty transportation at a very affordable price, if you enjoy carving up winding roads on the weekend, and if it's important to have a stylish expensive-looking vehicle parked in the driveway Honda has you covered. The Honda Civic Si is one of the most entertaining vehicles in showrooms for under 30 grand, and for 2020 it has been refreshened with styling tweaks, some performance tuning, and the addition of standard safety tech.

2020 Nissan Titan

PHOENIX — Nissan launched its current generation Titan pickup truck in 2017. Until then, it had remained relatively unchanged since its initial launch back in 2004. The 2017 Titan was a major leap forward and huge improvement over the previous Titan. To stay competitive — now that the other major brand full-sized pickups have completed refreshes in the past two years — Nissan has given the Titan modest updates outside and some really meaningful feature upgrades for the 2020 model year.

Dodge Charger Hellcat — Over-the-top performance

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

The Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Widebody may be one of the craziest family vehicles on the planet. But it's easy to like crazy when there's a monstrous 707-horsepower 6.2-liter Hemi V-8 engine under the hood that can turn a family cruiser into a tire-smokin' dragstrip animal or a two-ton winding-road juggernaut.

BMW X4M Competition — Full-time attack mode

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

With electrification threatening to take over our driving life in the coming years, this might be the best time ever to enjoy massive horsepower and insane performance from internal combustion engines. It may never get any better — as long as you have the cash to explore the world of monster performance.

2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB

SCOTTSDALE, Az. — Mercedes has just added yet another significant SUV to its product lineup. The all-new GLB slots between the smaller urban-stylish GLA and the larger rounded and best-selling GLC. GLB is offered in two-row five-passenger and three-row seven-passenger configurations ($850 upcharge) with standard front-wheel drive or optional 4Matic all-wheel drive, and is surprisingly affordable ($36,600 FWD and $38,600 AWD).

Toyota Land Cruiser — Large and capable

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

Toyota's iconic Land Cruiser SUV is a full-sized body-on-frame go-anywhere vehicle that hasn't undergone a full redesign since 2008, an anomaly in an industry that churns out all-new iterations every five or six years. That aside, if you are looking for a leather-ensconced sport utility with a big V-8 engine that can haul up to eight people with true off-road chops and the famous Toyota reliability, then perhaps this is your vehicle.

2020 Toyota Camry TRD

PHOENIX — For Toyota to have the audacity and downright adventurousness to actually slap the TRD (Toyota Racing Development — the brand’s in-house tuner division) on a Camry, let alone an Avalon, is clearly considered getting out on the skinny branches. It’s more than common to see the TRD moniker (add no vowels here please) affixed to the rear fenders of the world’s largest automaker’s trucks and SUVs, making them more off-road capable.

Cadillac XT5 — Solid luxury crossover

Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

Cadillac has been reinventing itself as a contemporary luxury brand, and the cornerstone of its efforts is the compact/mid-sized crossover, which has been its best seller for several years. It was the SRX earlier in the decade before evolving into the XT5 in 2017. Sales of the outgoing SRX were nearly three times that of the next best-selling Cadillac, and the XT5 has continued as the brand's top-selling vehicle.

Range Rover Evoque — New and improved

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

Land Rover introduced the compact Range Rover Evoque in 2011 in a nod to fashionable over the traditional squared-off SUV look of Range Rovers up to that point in time. To put an explanation point on the slick, sporty look, the company even added two-door and convertible versions.