Test Drive: 2019 VW Golf knows big things come in small packages

Anyone who remembers driving a 1960s or ’70s Volkswagen Beetle may be surprised to learn the 2019 VW Golf actually has a smaller engine than its revered predecessor. The air-cooled engine that powered the Beetle ranged from 1 liter in pre-war models to 1.6 liters in 1970s. The standard engine in today’s Golf is just 1.4 liters, with a turbocharger. … read more

Test Drive: 2018 Volkswagen Passat impresses

The midsize sedan remains a drag on many automakers’ balance sheets, as the American love affair with sport-utility vehicles and pickup trucks goes on. Yet most automakers continue to place substantial bets on the lowly sedan. During the past year, we’ve driven some of the America’s and Asia’s best medium-priced, midsize sedans, including the Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, Mazda6, Hyundai … read more

Test Drive: 2018 Elantra is surprisingly spacious

Visiting the rental-car world recently, we learned what “basic” means in today’s parlance. “Basic” used to mean a heater, three-on-the-tree transmission, manual brakes and steering, maybe an AM radio. Of course, our rental car was a Hyundai Elantra, so “basic” included several features that were luxuries not so very long ago. Our gray Elantra SE, fresh off the lot with … read more

Test Drive: The 2018 Camry impresses post redesign

Are automakers still building midsize sedans? Are they still trying to squeeze every possible mile out of a thimbleful of gasoline? Are the cars roomy and comfortable, with superior road manners? The answer is yes, at least if the automaker you’re talking about is Toyota. We test-drove a Toyota Camry hybrid sedan just two years ago, and scored another one … read more

Test Drive: Redesigned 2019 Cherokee is a success

Our family has owned or leased no fewer than five Jeeps, including a Renegade, a Patriot, an older Cherokee and a pair of Wranglers. So we have acquired some affection for the brand. Only one, the now-discontinued Patriot, was a bit of a disappointment in terms of driveability, durability and reliability. Given our generally positive experiences with Jeeps, we had … read more

Test Drive: Mazda’s new CX-9 is spacious

Mazda’s CX-9 is one of the softer-selling midsize sport-utility vehicles in its market segment. This is something of a mystery because it has so much going for it. “At $45,215, our CX-9 carried a premium price tag, but it’s also premium goods,” we said of the 2016 CX-9 — the first model year for the current design. The same is … read more

Test Drive: Santa Fe Sport is just right

The U.S.-built Hyundai Santa Fe Sport is among the frontrunners in the quest to right-size the modern sport-utility vehicle. Bigger than the compact Tucson but smaller than the midsize, three-row Santa Fe, the 2018 Santa Fe Sport hits the sweet spot between too big to drive comfortably and too small to perform the tasks normally assigned to an SUV. The … read more

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