Chevrolet Corvette Stingray — A refined sports car

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

The new Chevrolet Corvette Stingray is impressive. We can't remember a vehicle that delivered so many things so well including styling that is guaranteed to turn heads, exotic performance at a less-than-exotic price, a very drivable demeanor making it an excellent choice as a daily driver, and a vastly improved interior with updated technology.

Subaru Outback — New and improved

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

The Outback, the best-selling Subaru through the first 11 months of 2014, debuted in 1994 as a derivative of the second-generation mid-sized Legacy, making Subaru one of the first automakers to turn the out-of-favor station wagon into an SUV of sorts adding side body cladding — a SUV styling statement of the '90s — and raising the suspension to go with its standard all-wheel drive format. Call it a crossover if you wish, but it has come to epitomize the rugged all-weather go-anywhere modern version of the station wagon.

Lincoln MKC — Getting it right

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

A couple of years ago the new Lincoln MKZ mid-sized sedan was touted by parent company Ford as the new face of Lincoln, the first of a series of products that would put the fading luxury brand back into the forefront. We agree the MKZ is a decent entry-level luxury vehicle. But we were disappointed at how many corners Lincoln cut particularly in interior quality, craftsmanship and fit and finish. It was clear to us that the MKZ did not effectively escape the badge engineering of the past.

Volvo XC60 — Engine technology on display

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

The all-new Drive-E engine architecture has transformed Volvo's 60 Series vehicles into frugal high-performance driving machines using both a supercharger and a turbocharger on its new 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine making an energetic 302 horsepower while providing class-leading fuel economy. Earlier this year we drove the 2015 S60 E-Drive T6 sedan and came away astounded by the performance and gas mileage. Next up was the compact 2015 XC60 crossover and it did not disappoint.

Jaguar F-Type R Coupe — Cutting-edge styling, performance

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

If open-air motoring is not to your taste, a coupe version of the delightful Jaguar F-Type will give you the head turning styling and outstanding performance you so desire. The all-aluminum F-Type Coupe delivers the uncompromised design vision of the Jaguar C-X16 concept, and complements the existing F-Type Convertible.

Audi A3 — Quality in a small package

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

Size no longer defines the quality and overall excellence of an automobile. Looking back to the second half of the 20th Century, smaller generally meant cheaper in terms of build quality and level of equipment. This began changing a decade ago and now some of the most rapidly expanding segments in the luxury ranks are made up of smaller sedans and crossovers loaded with all the good stuff we expect from a premium vehicle.

Lexus NX 200t — New compact crossover luxury

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

The compact luxury crossover vehicle has suddenly become a hot commodity. Downsizing seems to be the next big thing and for luxury shoppers who favor the sedan-like ride, condensed size, tidy cabin, improved fuel economy, and small-vehicle maneuverability, a small luxury SUV seems to be the just-right ticket.

2015 Lincoln MKC

S — Hitting the sweet spot of any automotive segment on the first try is like hitting your first club at Pebble Beach and seeing nothing but a white dot tickling a flag. By being named “Crossover Utility Vehicle of Texas” by the Texas Auto Writers Association in October, that’s exactly what happened to Lincoln’s new MKC.

Ford Transit — A capable contender

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

These are the best of times for businesses that need reliable, efficient cargo hauling capabilities. The automotive landscape is awash in new commercial vans that promise a myriad of cargo-carrying capabilities, limitless configurable interiors, vastly improved driving dynamics, markedly better performance, and enhanced gas mileage. You might say we are entering the golden age of big vans.

Acura TLX — A rewarding marriage

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

Our favorite Acura sedan up to now was the third-generation TL (2003-2008), which caught our imagination with just-right styling, a perfect size, excellent handling traits and a hearty V-6 engine. It was a mature interpretation of what we thought a luxury sports sedan should be. Then Acura seemed to lose focus, producing softer more mainstream sedans with questionable styling features.