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Wednesday, April 23, 2014
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Author Archive: Ann M. Job

Volkswagen Passat a fuelish family sedan

The Associated Press Don’t be fooled by the mild-looking exterior of the Volkswagen Passat sedan. This mid-size four door comes with a solid, stable ride, European-style handling, exceptional back-seat legroom and superlative fuel economy. In fact, the Passat differentiates itself well from other mid-size family sedans because it is one of the few sold in […]

4Runner keeps rugged charm

The Associated Press Thirty years after its U.S. debut as a utilitarian, four-wheel drive truck with a fiberglass cover on the back, the Toyota 4Runner remains a different kind of family sport utility vehicle. Sure, the 2014 4Runner has seats for up to seven passengers and can be stocked with navigation system, leather-trimmed seats and […]

Cadillac takes on Tesla with plug-in ELR

The Associated Press Finally, there’s an electric car that rivals Tesla’s eye-catching Model S. The sleek, new-for-2014 Cadillac ELR coupe is arguably as sexy looking as the sporty Model S, and like the Tesla, it’s a plug-in vehicle that’s capable of traveling for hours without stopping. 2014 Cadillac ELR Base price: $75,995 Price as tested: […]

Kia doesn’t lose any Soul for 2014

The Associated Press The animated and dapper hamsters in Kia’s television ads aren’t the only ones who ride comfortably in Kia’s newly revamped Soul five-door hatchback. People of nearly all sizes and budgets can find the five-passenger, 2014 Soul to be a satisfying small car. For 2014, it has a more responsive engine, more rigid […]

Sleek, nimble FR-S is sportiest Scion

The Associated Press The sportiest car in Toyota’s Scion family, the 2014 FR-S, is a fun-to-drive, four-cylinder, rear-wheel drive coupe that looks more expensive than its $25,455 starting price tag. Even better, the 2014 FR-S earned top, five out of five stars in overall federal government crash tests. And, considering its tidy size, coupe body […]

Durango is a worthy three-row SUV

The Associated Press Already a commendable family vehicle with three rows of seats, the Dodge Durango gets even better for 2014 with improved fuel economy, an impressively easy touchscreen and voice control dashboard system and attractively updated interior and exterior. There also are thoughtful details, such as a push button for the driver to remotely […]

Toyota’s Tundra pickup updated for 2014

The Associated Press In its first major update since 2007, the full-size Toyota Tundra pickup truck is redesigned with a bold, American-style exterior, a refined, quieter interior and standard backup camera and Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity. What’s not changed are the engines — a V-6 and pair of V-8s, all gasoline-powered — as well […]

A stylish, roomier Toyota Corolla for 2014

The Associated Press The Toyota Corolla, the fifth best-selling nameplate in the United States, is a larger, roomier sedan for 2014 with improved ride and better gasoline mileage than its predecessor. But it doesn’t look like a Corolla. The conservative character is gone, replaced by contemporary styling outside and an intriguing, almost retro, dashboard design […]

New Malibu marks a first — stop-start engine

The 2014 Chevrolet Malibu packs a surprise: It’s the first mainstream mid-size sedan sold in the United States with standard automatic engine stop-start that saves gasoline. The system turns off the car’s engine in certain conditions when the vehicle is stopped and automatically turns it back on as a driver lets up on the brake […]

Fiesta is an affordable, peppy fuel-sipper

The Associated Press Ford’s smallest car in the United States, the Fiesta, doesn’t have a hybrid powerplant and it doesn’t plug into an electric outlet. The 2014 Fiesta doesn’t even come with a fuel-conscious continuously variable transmission. Yet, the affordable, sprightly, five-seat Fiesta ranks as a top nameplate in the United States in fuel economy […]

Silverado: Chevy’s new truck is refined

The Associated Press Don’t let appearances fool you. While Chevrolet’s 2014 Silverado looks a lot like its predecessor on the outside, major changes give the new Silverado better ride and handling, improved safety and a more luxurious, quiet interior with features that rival some offices. As an example, a modern strip of outlets — to […]

BMW 4-Series Coupe has fine handling

The Associated Press Officials at German automaker BMW did a fine job differentiating their new-for-2014 smallish coupe from last year’s 3-Series coupe. The new, rear-wheel drive, two-door BMW is wider, longer and lower than its predecessor; it’s attractively styled and has great handling dynamics and a new name: The 4-Series. Better yet, a twin-scroll turbocharged, […]

Third-generation Lexus sedan has edgy attitude

The Associated Press The compact, entry-level Lexus IS sedan is redesigned for 2014 with an edgy attitude. From styling that includes deep strakes at the door sills to an interior brimming with technology and new, electrostatic climate controls that adjust with the swipe of a driver’s finger, the 2014 IS exhibits a modern, aggressive flair. […]

That’s a Jeep Cherokee? 2014 model surprises

The Associated Press The Jeep Cherokee is back, though no one recognizes the 2014 model — with sleek, modern styling, a long list of safety features, pleasant handling and comfortable on-road ride — as a Cherokee. Remember, the last vehicle to carry the Cherokee name was a 2001 sport utility vehicle that had slab sides […]

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