small suv

2021 Subaru Crosstrek Sport

2021 Subaru Crosstrek Sport Adventure and Youth Distilled to an even stronger Love By Kevin Joostema, Partner, Car-ED.com | September 2020 Subaru has developed two new trims for the high volume Crosstrek 2021 model year: the Sport and the Limited. Both models share the introduction of the larger and more powerful 2.5-liter direct-injection SUBARU BOXER engine to the Crosstrek family. While the Limited comes with upgraded 18-inch wheels and everything but the kitchen sink, it is the Sport model that keeps you falling in love with Subaru as a brand, yet again. The Sport contains the core elements of the great Crosstrek but in a distilled, more concentrated, manner. What is this vehicle? These distilled elements start with the fact that the Crosstrek is more a true SUV than the newer competitor crossovers being introduced in this compact vehicle category. With segment leading ground clearance of 8.7 inches and the standard, symmetrical 4 Wheel Drive of Subaru (versus All Wheel Drive systems of competitors), it is an SUV, not a crossover with SUV styling. The Sport model elements that are distilled to a stronger statement begin on the exterior. It has a unique gun metal color scheme on exterior parts – starting with the grille design, a new and exclusive 17-inch wheel design with gun metal (gray) color, and the side mirrors and the badging. The front bumpers are beefier in look while the [...]

2020-09-18T11:55:46-04:00Sep 2020|Car Reviews, News, Research|

First Drive: 2018 BMW X2

2018 BMW X2 xDrive28i BMW builds a shorter, lower, and sportier version of the X1 SUV. Is the X2 a better choice, or does it lose the sport-utility plot? By Nick Kurczewski, Contributor, Car-ED.com | September 2018 The 2018 BMW X2 is a racier-looking version of the existing BMW X1. A punchy four-cylinder engine and sharp handling give the X2 a dynamic edge, but is that enough when squared-off against the best from Mercedes-Benz, Audi, Cadillac, Lincoln, Lexus, and Acura? What is this vehicle? The 2018 BMW X2 is based on the taller and longer X1 sport-utility, the German automaker's smallest entry in the red-hot market for affordable luxury SUVs. Rivals to the X2 include the Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class, Lincoln MKC, Volvo XC40, Lexus NX, Audi Q3, Cadillac XT4, and Infiniti QX30. Instead of emphasizing the amount of cup-holders and available cargo space, BMW has opted to focus the new X2 on the sportier side of the sport-utility segment. This is why the X2 is roughly three inches shorter than the X1, though it rides on an identical wheelbase. That's a good thing, since it means the X2 doesn't skimp on rear legroom, which is a key factor for many SUV buyers - even ones who don't need third-row seating, or the towing capacity of a big-rig truck. With a starting price of $36,400, the X2 is more a couple thousand dollars more expensive [...]

2018-09-28T12:07:29-04:00Sep 2018|Uncategorized|

First Drive: 2019 Cadillac XT4

2019 Cadillac XT4 Cadillac finally the small luxury SUV fight to rivals like the Lexus NX, Volvo XC40, Mercedes-Benz GLA, and Audi Q3. Does the Caddy come out as the new champ? By Nick Kurczewski, Contributor, Car-ED.com | September 2018 The 2019 Cadillac XT4 is a small SUV with a huge job ahead of it: To make the American luxury brand a contender in the red-hot market for compact SUVs that are big on safety, style, performance, and technology. What is this vehicle? The 2019 Cadillac XT4 is a small SUV that fills a huge gap in the American luxury brand's lineup of vehicles. Until now, Cadillac had only two SUVs on offer, the midsize XT5 crossover and the full-size Escalade SUV. Neither one was an ideal fit for the automotive world's hottest craze, the premium compact sport-utility. While rival brands offered pint-sized SUVs - like the Mercedes-Benz GLA, Lexus NX, Audi Q3, and BMW X1 - Cadillac was left outside looking in, at least until now. Powered by a turbocharged four-cylinder engine and available with front- or optional all-wheel drive, the XT4 carries an aggressive starting price of $35,790 (including destination fee) and streamlines the shopping experience into three main trim levels: Premium, Premium Luxury, and Sport. No matter which you choose, the powertrain remains the same, and adding all-wheel drive costs an additional $2,500 across the board. While the turbo engine [...]

2018-09-24T20:23:42-04:00Sep 2018|Uncategorized|

First Impressions: 2018 Volkswagen GTI

2018 Volkswagen GTI Finally, a sports car the whole family can agree on (and fit into). By Nick Kurczewski, Contributor, Car-ED.com | July 2018 What is this vehicle? The 2018 Volkswagen GTI proves compromise is still possible, at least when it comes to finding a car that's functional and fun-to-drive on a daily basis. Beneath the GTI's stoic four-door body, and tucked somewhere behind its handy hatchback, is a feisty side that loves to play whenever you punch the gas pedal. Granted, this isn't a Hemi-powered, chest-thumping kind of sports machine. If a Mustang, Camaro, and Challenger are the heavyweight boxing bruisers of the affordable performance world, think of the VW GTI as more of a world-class fencer or slalom skier. For starters, the VW's 220-horsepower turbocharged four-cylinder engine gets you going, quickly. But if smoky burnouts and look-at-me driving shenanigans are what you're after, the GTI could leave you feeling suddenly very...sensible. For the 2018 model year, the GTI is only available in four-door format, as the coupe model sadly got the heave-ho from the lineup. A six-speed manual is the standard transmission, though many buyers will probably spend extra for the available six-speed automatic (which is how our test car was equipped). While we're proponents of manuals, the automatic does an excellent job of smoothly delivering power to the front wheels. Inside the cabin, the materials feel a cut above the [...]

2018-07-30T16:29:45-04:00Jul 2018|Car Reviews, Car Reviews, Car Reviews, Car Reviews|

2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

2018 Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross Returning some sparkle to the triple-diamond By Randy Lioz, Editor, Car-ED.com | June 2018 The compact utility segment–with well-known entries like the Toyota RAV4 and Ford Escape–is the best-selling in the industry, having leap-frogged the sedan segments as the family car of record for Americans. Mitsubishi wants to use its new entry in the segment as a basis for its climb back to relevance with U.S. consumers. The brand has had a tough slog, with a 10-year decline from 2002 to 2012, which saw the brand lose 83% of its sales volume. Over the past five years the tri-diamond has been growing, with 2017's sales nearly 80% above that of 2012. Nearly all of that increase has been owed to the brand's two existing crossovers, the Outlander and Outlander Sport. But to really kick up the momentum, and to introduce its new sense of design flair, Mitsubishi has resurrected the Eclipse name for a utility vehicle that tries to offer a distinct sense of sportiness in a field of crossovers that's more focused on utility and efficiency. What is this vehicle? The Eclipse Cross actually occupies the space in between the compact and subcompact segments, though Mitsubishi is positioning the vehicle against the compacts of the world. Its wheelbase and width suggest a vehicle right in the thick of competitors like the Honda CR-V and Ford Escape, but its [...]

2018-06-15T00:50:28-04:00Jun 2018|Uncategorized|

2018 Nissan Kicks

2018 Nissan Kicks Nissan’s smallest SUV joins the car world’s biggest craze. By Nick Kurczewski, Car-ED.com | June 2018 Small SUVs are the next big thing in the car world, and automakers are rapidly adding more of them to their lineups. The 2018 Nissan Kicks joins in as the latest entry in this growing range of subcompact SUVs, which includes similarly brand-new models like the Ford EcoSport and Hyundai Kona. More established competition in this segment – which Nissan expects to more than double in sales volume over the next 3-4 years – includes the Kia Soul, Chevrolet Trax, Honda HR-V and Toyota CH-R. What is this vehicle? In terms of its size, the Kicks is right in the thick of its competition. The Nissan stretches 169.1 inches in total length, making it slightly larger than the Kia Soul (163 inches long), a bit smaller than the Toyota CH-R (171.7 inches), and the exact same length as the Honda HR-V (169.1 inches). Helping the 2018 Kicks stand out from the crowd is an aggressively low starting price of $18,965, including the $995 destination fee. A fully-loaded Kicks SR, such as the one we recently test drove in San Diego, California, still came with an affordable as-tested price of $22,025. Our test car included features such as a 7-inch touch screen, Apple CarPlay and Android compatibility, blind spot monitors, surround-view camera, rear cross-traffic warning, leather-wrapped [...]

2018-06-12T22:58:38-04:00Jun 2018|Uncategorized|