August 2022

Means streets — Urban traffic fatalities now exceed those on rural roads

(August 31, 2022) According to research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, more people are now killed on the nation’s city streets than on rural roads, with speed playing a critical factor. Between 2010 and 2019, fatalities in urban areas surged 34%, while those in rural areas fell 10%. Urban fatalities surpassed those in rural areas in 2016; by 2019, 19,595 people were killed in urban locations compared to 16,340 in the countryside.

Few vehicles excel in new nighttime test of pedestrian autobrake

(August 31, 2022) The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety is introducing a nighttime test of pedestrian automatic emergency braking (AEB) systems to address the high percentage of pedestrian crashes that occur on dark roads. Four of the first 23 midsize cars, midsize SUVs and small pickups tested earn the highest rating of superior, but more than half earn a basic score or no credit.

J.D. Power: Inventory shortages, high prices constrain August sales

(August 30, 2022) New-vehicle retail sales for August are expected to decline when compared with August 2021, according to a joint forecast from J.D. Power and LMC Automotive. Retail sales of new vehicles this month are expected to reach 980,400 units, a 2.6% decrease compared with August 2021 when adjusted for selling days. August 2022 has one additional selling day compared with August 2021. Comparing the same sales volume without adjusting for the number of selling days translates to an increase of 1.3% from 2021.

BMW X4 more about appearance than practicality of typical SUV

Photos by Paul Borden

By Paul Borden

(August 28, 2022) MIAMI — Three years into its second generation, the BMW X4 is a sexier version of the  boxier BMW X3 compact SUV introduced back in 2004, though the X4’s sportier coupe-like profile does come with quirks that impede on the mission of your usual Sports Utility Vehicle.

2023 Rivian R1S — Electrified futuristic SUV

By Jim Prueter

(August 24, 2022) PHOENIX — There’s a very strong likelihood you’re unfamiliar with the new electric vehicle startup Rivian — the first to bring an EV pickup to the market. You’re even less likely to have seen one on the road let alone it’s new second vehicle, the three-row R1S SUV tested here.

Read the road — Sign struggles and dangerous distractions


(August 23, 2022) There is so much to figure out when you start learning how to drive. Do you know where the mirrors are around your car? How about the rules of the road? Can you identify all those road signs? A lot of it seems like common sense, but after initially learning and passing driver’s education courses, drivers don’t always get tested regularly.

Drivers find relief at the pump in the short term

(August 23,2022) WASHINGTON, D.C.  —Stable global oil prices and modest domestic demand for gasoline led pump prices to fall a nickel in the past week to $3.90. AAA finds that drivers are making significant changes to cope with high pump prices. In a recent survey, almost two-thirds of U.S. adults say they have changed their driving habits or lifestyle since March. Drivers’ top two changes to offset high gas prices are driving less and combining errands.

2023 Kia Sportage gets distinctive new looks and gains a hybrid powertrain

By Jim Prueter

(August 21, 2022) With a presence of over 20 years, the Sportage is Kia’s longest running nameplate in the U.S. and for 2023 it’s been completely redesigned inside and out. In addition to a distinct new design and built on Kia’s 7-inch longer N3 platform, the same used by the larger Kia Sorento, making for an overall larger Sportage. For the first time it’s being offered as a hybrid and plug-in hybrid variants alongside the gas-only Sportage.

Hyundai IONIQ 5 Wins Car and Driver's 2022 EV of the Year Award

(August 19, 2022) FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif. — The 2022 Hyundai IONIQ 5 has received Car and Driver’s EV of the Year Award, adding another honor to its trophy case. The publication put 20 top-rated EVs through rigorous testing over a three-week period. IONIQ 5 took the No. 1 spot.

EV sales threatened by inconsistent public charging experience

(August 18, 2022) TROY, Mich.  — The growth of electric vehicle (EV) sales during the past year has been remarkable, but has added stress to an already beleaguered public vehicle charging infrastructure. In this growth spurt, owners in high EV volume markets like California, Texas and Washington, for instance, are finding the charging infrastructure inadequate and plagued with non-functioning stations. These are among the key findings in the second annual J.D. Power U.S. Electric Vehicle Experience (EVX) Public Charging Study, released this week.