Mini / BMW pulled back the curtain on the all-new 2014 Mini Cooper. Outwardly, it’s clearly a Mini, and that’s good news indeed. It looks great – it’s just a modern evolution of the traditional Mini that we all know and love. It did grow in every dimension, which is much less good. It’s 4.5 inches longer and 1.7 inches wider than the outgoing model. It’s also just a hair taller. I love the bigger Mini variants, but I’m not thrilled with a growing Cooper. With BMW using this platform for both the Mini and the new BMW 1 series, it was inevitable. [click to continue…]
Autoblog reviews the 2013 Acura ZDX. Here’s a gem from the article:
So, there are any number of reasons why you and I didn’t buy a ZDX over the last four years, and plenty of good ones for Acura to kill the model off after 2013. But I started this review by asking how history will judge it, and the optimist in me believes that it could still find love in the years to come.
Read the article if you will, but it doesn’t make sense. The Acura ZDX doesn’t make sense. It never did. It’s obscenely expensive. It’s ugly. It’s impractical. There are dozens of better ways to spend $50,000 on an automobile. Even if it was $40,000 it would be a bad deal.
The latest and greatest ginormous SUV’s from General Motors have been unveiled. True to form, they are still old-school body-on-frame. The world is moving to unibody designs nearly across the board, but GM is keeping it old-school. Under the hoods of these beasts lies a 355 HP 5.3 liter V8. The Denali gets an upgraded powerplant, of course – 420 HP 6.2 liter V8, if you must know.
Only truly diehard GM SUV fans will really notice the differences here – to my untrained eyes, they look just about the same as the outgoing models. Giant slabs of metal. Yay.
The one bit of “news” here is that the trio will finally come with a fold-flat third row. Seriously, it has taken until the 2015 model year for GM to figure out how to do that. Meanwhile, everyone else in the industry had that nailed over a decade ago. Just saying.
No word on fuel economy, but my guess is that it will lie somewhere between “deplorable” and “abominable.” Of course, the numbers will probably be good for the class of vehicle, so GM will market them as amazingly fuel-efficient. Good for the class does not equal fuel efficient. Sorry GM.
Anyway, if giant hulking beasts are your cup of tea, check out more info below.
Officially, Honda is only canning the unloved Ridgeline for two years1, with plans to resurrect it in 2016. Given the poor sales and tightening fuel economy standards, I can’t see a business case for bringing back the Ridgeline. Yes, I know that Ridgeline sales has technically been up this year, but they’re still terrible.
Honda is not a name that comes to mind when someone is looking for a “full size” truck. If Honda insists on being in the truck market, there is a solution. Honda should bring the compact pickup truck back to the United States. With the Ford Ranger gone, there are precisely zero new compact pickup trucks available for sale in the US. Honda could fix that, and they might even sell some.
Marketed and priced correctly, a true compact 4 cylinder truck could be a home run for Honda.
Production is scheduled to end in fall 2014. ↩