BMW M2 CS — Smoking hot land rocket

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

(September 12, 2021) There are some Ultimate Driving Machines that are more "ultimate" than others. In fact, BMW's limited edition little two-door 2020 M2 CS coupe might be the most "ultimate" of all. BMW upped the horsepower ante of its standard M2, a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged six-cylinder engine, from 405 to 440 stuffing it into the miniature beast dovetailing with extraordinary handling and cornering grip. It proved a driving delight — a pocket rocket on steroids.

Chevrolet Corvette — Supercar performance at an amazing price

MotorwayAmerica.com photo

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

It was the shortest week of 2020 — the week we lived with the new mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette. Time seemed to slip away as we created little windows of opportunity to get behind the wheel, take pictures, answer dozens of questions from onlookers, and give at least a half dozen rides. Since it showed up in 1953, the Corvette has been the number one aspired-to vehicle in America. No different for this reinterpretation of the all-American sports car.

2020 Mercedes-AMG GT R

PHOENIX — There’s much to say when writing about the 2020 Mercedes-AMG GT R, not the least being that it’s one of the best track cars ever produced, possibly the very best.  Let’s start with the details: 577 horsepower 4.0-liter twin-turbo V-8, a cranium-compressing 516 pound-feet of torque, AMG Speedshift  DCT 7-speed transmission, limited slip electronic differential, 16-inch compound carbon-ceramic disc brakes, rear-wheel steering, and extreme-performance sport tires.

2020 Land Rover Defender

MIAMI — The 2020 Land Rover Defender is a new SUV sporting an old name. First introduced in 1983 as the Land Rover 110 with a Land Rover 90 coming a year later — the designations were based on the vehicle’s wheelbase, not engine size — the name was altered to Defender in 1990, but it wasn’t too survive very long in the U.S. market.

Aston Martin Vantage — Something special

Photo by Nathaniel Zanavich

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

(November 15, 2020) The Aston Martin Vantage is a great highway cruiser and works well for a long day behind the wheel, but don't let its admirable interstate manners fool you. The Vantage is a purpose-built performance machine. Example number one — its selectable suspension and throttle modes do not include a Comfort setting. Your choices are simply Sport, Sport + and Track. Example number two — it’s propelled by a potent 503-horsepower twin-turbo V-8 mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission that can hit 60 mpg in 3.5 seconds.

2020 Corvette convertible

INDIANAPOLIS — I was getting out of the car at my hair stylists’ place when she walked out and screamed, “You have got to be kidding me!”  She thought I was driving a Ferrari.  I said, “What?  It’s the new Corvette!”  She took a long walk around, looked at me and said, “Yeah, I can see that.”  And, that’s the beauty of the 2020 Corvette Convertible. Its exotic looks derive from the engine’s change of latitude from the nose to behind the seats — a move to enhance handling and acceleration, but also freed designers to change the car’s proportions. 

Cadillac CT4-V — Luxury performance at a good price

MotowayAmerica.com photo

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

(October 18, 2020) By the end of the year Lincoln will become the only mainstream luxury carmaker without a single sedan in the lineup. Time will tell if this is a good decision — other luxury automakers retain at least a semblance of a sedan presence as SUVs take over the landscape like out of control kudzu. We mention this because Lincoln's arch rival Cadillac is also loading up its lineup with crossovers, but still offers sedan alternatives with the excellent all-new CT4 and CT5. Its customers at least have a choice. And we are for a choice because we like sedans.

Mazda3 AWD — Stylish and feature loaded

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

With a refinement above its class and sophisticated driving manners, the 2020 Mazda3 is one of the most satisfying mainstream compact cars on the road. Available as a hatchback or sedan, the Mazda3 is a viable alternative to rivals such as the Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla and Hyundai Elantra. For 2020 Mazda has added all-wheel drive as an option for just $800, and the previously optional engine — a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder — is now the standard powerplant across the lineup endowing all Mazda3's with a segment-topping 186 horsepower and 180 pound-feet of torque.

Genesis G90 — A luxury bargain

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

(September 27, 2020) Genesis has earned a trophy case full of accolades since Hyundai spun off its luxury nameplate as a separate division in 2015 to do battle with the likes of Lexus, Infiniti, Mercedes, BMW and Cadillac. Its luxury cars — there are now three, namely the G90, G80 and G70 — have already earned their stripes with the G70 winning North American Car of the year in 2019 and the Genesis brand ranking first in the J.D. Power Initial Quality Study in 2018 and first in the 2020 Vehicle Dependability Study.

Lexus RC F — Styling and mechanical tweaks

By Jim Meachen and Ted Biederman

(September 20, 2020) A mix of comfort and track-like performance makes the 2020 Lexus RC F perhaps the perfect choice for someone who desires a luxury-infused daily driver with an attitude backed up by 472 horsepower and cutting-edge styling. Lexus is keeping its luxury-rocketship coupe — introduced in 2014 as the RC 350 — competitive with numerous updates including styling tweaks and a slight increase in horsepower from its V-8 engine.