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Found 335 results

  1. Expectation can be a very dangerous thing. You come into something thinking it will blow your mind and more often than not, it comes up short. That’s how I felt during the first few days into a loan of a 2019 Buick Regal GS. What was being presented didn’t match up with my experience. But over the week I had the vehicle, it began to grow on. That isn’t to say some issues need to be addressed. At first glance, you might think Buick decided to stick with a sedan shape. But the sloping rear hatch gives away its true identity as a Sportback. This helps give the impression that the Regal is sporty, helped further by short overhangs. By adding small touches such as large front air intakes, GS-specific 19-inch wheels. Brembo front brake calipers finished in Red, and a small lip spoiler, the GS transforms the Regal into looking like a red-blooded sports sedan. The interior sadly doesn’t match up with what is being presented on the outside. While there was some effort to make the GS stand out with faux carbon-fiber trim, special sport seats, and GS badging, it doesn’t quite match with what is being presented outside. Not helping are some cheap plastics littered throughout the Regal GS’ interior. If this was a standard Regal, I may have given it a slight pass. But considering this GS carries a price of almost $43k, it becomes a big issue. The interior does redeem it somewhat with a logical and simple layout. No one had any complaints about whether the controls were confusing or hard to reach. Let’s talk about the front seats, The Regal GS comes fitted with racing-style front seat with aggressive side bolstering and faux holes towards the top where the belts for a harness would go into. This design seems more at home in a hardcore Corvette than a Buick. Before you start thinking that the seat design only allows a small group of people to fit, Buick has fitted adjustable bolstering to allow a wide set of body types to sit comfortably. With this and other power adjustments, I was able to find a position that suited me. Over a long drive, the seats were able to provide the right amount of support and comfort. The back seats don’t get the same “race car” treatment as the front, but they do offer ample head and legroom for most passengers. Cargo space is quite impressive with 31.5 cubic feet with the seats up and 60.7 when folded. The Kia Stinger I drove back in January pales in comparison with 23.3 and 40.9 cubic feet. The Regal GS features an eight-inch touchscreen with the new Buick Infotainment 3 system. As I mentioned in my Silverado/Sierra 1500 review, the new system is worlds better than Intellilink. The interface has been cleaned up with simpler graphics and fonts that are much easier to read. Also seeing noticeable improvements is the overall performance. The system is much faster when bringing up different functions or crunching a route on the optional navigation system. Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and OnStar 4G LTE round off the system. With the effort Buick has put in, you might have the feeling that the Regal GS has something special under the hood. That isn’t the case. Under the hood of the GS is GM’s venerable 3.6L V6 with 310 horsepower and 282 pound-feet. While the V6 packs 40 more horsepower than the 2.0L turbo-four from the last-generation model, it is also down 13 pound-feet. This absence becomes apparent when you decide to sprint away from a stoplight or exiting a corner as you need to work the engine to get that rush of power. A numb throttle response doesn’t help. If you resist from attack mode, the V6 reveals a quiet and refined nature. But again, you will need to work the engine when merging or making a pass. Before someone shouts “put a turbo on it”, Buick cannot do that as there isn’t enough space in the engine bay due to the design of the platform. We’ve known about this issue since 2016 when Holden was gearing up to launch the Commodore - its version of the OpelVauxhall Insignia. The nine-speed automatic transmission goes about its business with unobtrusive shifts when going about your daily errands, but offers up snappy shifts when you decide to get aggressive. A glaring omission on this sports sedan is the lack of paddle shifters. Fuel economy for the 2019 Regal GS is 19 City/27 Highway/22 Combined. I saw an average of 20 during the week. This can likely to be attributed to the test vehicle having under 1,000 miles on the odometer. On paper, the Regal GS’ handling credentials seem top-notch with Continuous Damping Control (CDC) system and a GKN all-wheel drive system featuring a twin-clutch torque-vectoring rear differential. The latter allows a varying amount of power sent to each rear wheel to improve cornering. In the real world, the GS is more Grand Tourer than Gran Sport. While the sedan shows little body roll, its reflexes are slightly muted due to a nearly 3,800 pound curb weight. The steering provides a decent amount of weight when turning, but don’t expect a lot of road feel. What about that AWD system? For the most part, you really won’t notice working unless you decide to push the limits or practice your winter driving skills in a snowy and empty parking lot. Thanks to the CDC system, the Regal GS’ ride is surprisingly smooth. With the vehicle in Tour, the suspension glides over bumps and imperfections. The ride begins to get choppy if you One area that I’m glad Buick is still focusing on is noise isolation. Road and wind noise is almost non-existent. The 2019 Buick Regal GS is a case of expectations being put too high. Despite what the exterior and sports seats of the interior may hint at, this isn’t a sports sedan like a Kia Stinger GT or something from a German luxury brand. But my feelings began to change when I thought of the GS as being more of a grand tourer. It has the ingredients such as a refined powertrain, a suspension that can be altered to provide either a comfortable or sporty ride; and minimizing the amount of outside noise. There lies the overall problem with Regal GS as Buick doesn’t quite know what it wants to be. Does it want to be a sport sedan or a luxury sedan with grand tourer tendencies? This confusion will likely cause many people to look at something else which is a big shame. How I Would Configure a 2019 Buick Regal GS. My particular configuration would be similar to the vehicle tested here with the Driver Confidence Package #2, Sights and Sounds, and Appearance packages. The only change would be adding the White Frost Tricoat color, which adds an additional $1,095 to the price. All together, it comes out to $44,210. Alternatives to the 2019 Buick Regal GS: Kia Stinger: The big elephant in the room when talking about the Regal GS. For a similar amount of cash, you can step into the base GT model with its 365 horsepower twin-turbo V6 and rear-wheel drive setup (AWD adds $2,200). I came away very impressed with the styling, performance on tap from the V6, and handling prowess. Downsides include the interior design being a bit too minimalist and the ride being a bit rough. Volkswagen Arteon: The other dark horse to the Regal GS. There is no doubt that the Arteon is quite handsome with flowing lines and sleek fastback shape. Having sat in one at the Detroit Auto Show earlier this year, I found it to be very roomy and upscale in terms of the interior materials. I hope to get some time behind the wheel in the near future to see how it measures up in handling. Disclaimer: Buick Provided the Regal GS, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas Year: 2019 Make: Buick Model: Regal Trim: GS Engine: 3.6L V6 Driveline: Nine-Speed Automatic, All-Wheel Drive Horsepower @ RPM: 310 @ 6,800 Torque @ RPM: 282 @ 5,200 Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 19/27/22 Curb Weight: 3,796 lbs Location of Manufacture: Rüsselsheim Germany Base Price: $39,070 As Tested Price: $43,115 (Includes $925.00 Destination Charge) Options: Driver Confidence Package #2: $1,690.00 Sights and Sounds Package: $945.00 Appearance Package: $485.00 View full article
  2. What a difference that four years make. That's the timeframe from the first Kia electric I reviewed (Soul EV) to the model seen here, the 2019 Niro EV. So much has changed in terms of battery technology and overall range that I could see myself having an electric vehicle as a primary mode of transport. There are some still some issues that make me think twice, but they are getting smaller. Kia avoided the trend of going crazy with the Niro EV’s design. Little touches such as blue accent trim, 17-inch alloy wheels, and closed-front grille hiding the charging port help the EV stand apart from other Niro models. Changes inside are even smaller with a new center console featuring a dial control for the drive selector. This move is very smart as many buyers really don’t want their vehicle to shout “LOOK AT ME” when driving. The electric powertrain in the Niro EV packs quite the punch - 201 horsepower and 291 pound-feet of torque. This is up 62 and 92 respectively from the Niro Hybrid I drove a few years back. Providing the electricity is a 64 kWh Lithium-Ion Polymer Battery that provides an estimated range of 239 miles. Kia says the Niro EV will hit 60 mph in under eight seconds. But I found it to be slightly quicker thanks to all of the torque being available instantly. Merging onto a freeway is where the electric powertrain does lose steam - blame a hefty curb weight of 3,854 pounds. I saw a maximum range of 208 to 210 miles throughout my week. This was due to cold temperatures ranging from low 30s to high 40s. But I was able to do a forty-mile round-trip commute for most of the week without having any range anxiety issues. Charging anxiety is a different story. If you have been reading my electric and plug-in hybrid reviews, then you’ll know that I only have access to 120V charging at home. Plugging the Niro EV after my day job meant waiting over sixteen hours for a full charge. This caused me to not want to venture out far unless I had some important errands to run as it would mean a longer time for a recharge. If I had completely depleted the battery, I would be waiting over two days for the battery to recharge. If you have a 240V charger, that time drops to 9.5 hours for a full-recharge. Finding a quick charger has gotten easier in the past year or two, but it is still a hit and miss affair. There are no quick chargers near where I live (unless I have a Tesla). It's slightly better further south where I work as there some around the area. But that introduces its own set of problems such setting aside the time to charge up the vehicle to finding if one works. I should note that I didn’t get the chance to try quick charging with the Niro EV during my week. Handling is slightly better in the Niro EV thanks to the additional weight of the battery pack which reduces body roll. Steering is very light when turning, but will surprise you with how quick and accurate it deals with changes in direction. Ride quality is a little bit firm with some bumps and imperfections making their way inside. Where the Niro EV shines is noise isolation. During my work commute, I was surprised by how little wind and road noise came inside. The major downside to the Niro EV is its limited availability. At the time of this writing, Kia is only selling the Niro EV is twelve states - most of them having Zero Emission Vehicle (or ZEV) programs that require automakers to sell a certain amount of electric vehicles in their lineups. Nothing is stopping you from purchasing a Niro EV in one of the states that it is available, but I’m wondering how many people will do that. Pricing for the Niro EV begins at $38,500 for the base EX model. I had the EX Premium at $44,000 which adds such goodies as an eight-inch touchscreen, premium audio system, heated and ventilated front seats; sunroof. Add in a $1,000 Launch Edition package (LED headlights, front parking sensors, and auto-dimming rear-view mirror), and my as-tested price came to $45,995. Expensive bit of kit, but the Niro EV does come with a long list of standard features including heated outside mirrors with power folding; seven-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto; adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, and push-button start. Plus, the Niro EV qualifies for the full $7,500 federal tax credit which may sway some buyers when it comes time to do their taxes. The Kia Niro EV is the first electric vehicle that I could see myself living with. It drives for the most part as a normal vehicle and offers enough range for most people. The big item you need to be aware of is charging. If you decide to purchase, be sure to get a 240V charger and check to see if there are any sort of fast chargers in your area. It may mean the difference between worry-free and a large amount of anxiety. Disclaimer: Kia Provided the Niro EV, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas Year: 2019 Make: Kia Model: Niro EV Trim: EX Premium Engine: 356V Permanent Magnet Synchronous Electric Motor Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, Lithium Ion Polymer Battery Pack Horsepower @ RPM: 201 @ 3,800 - 8,000 Torque @ RPM: 291 @ 0 - 3,600 Estimated Range: 239 Miles Curb Weight: 3,854 lbs Location of Manufacture: Base Price: $44,000 As Tested Price: $46,045 (Includes $1,045.00 Destination Charge) Options: Launch Edition - $1,000.00 View full article
  3. What a difference that four years make. That's the timeframe from the first Kia electric I reviewed (Soul EV) to the model seen here, the 2019 Niro EV. So much has changed in terms of battery technology and overall range that I could see myself having an electric vehicle as a primary mode of transport. There are some still some issues that make me think twice, but they are getting smaller. Kia avoided the trend of going crazy with the Niro EV’s design. Little touches such as blue accent trim, 17-inch alloy wheels, and closed-front grille hiding the charging port help the EV stand apart from other Niro models. Changes inside are even smaller with a new center console featuring a dial control for the drive selector. This move is very smart as many buyers really don’t want their vehicle to shout “LOOK AT ME” when driving. The electric powertrain in the Niro EV packs quite the punch - 201 horsepower and 291 pound-feet of torque. This is up 62 and 92 respectively from the Niro Hybrid I drove a few years back. Providing the electricity is a 64 kWh Lithium-Ion Polymer Battery that provides an estimated range of 239 miles. Kia says the Niro EV will hit 60 mph in under eight seconds. But I found it to be slightly quicker thanks to all of the torque being available instantly. Merging onto a freeway is where the electric powertrain does lose steam - blame a hefty curb weight of 3,854 pounds. I saw a maximum range of 208 to 210 miles throughout my week. This was due to cold temperatures ranging from low 30s to high 40s. But I was able to do a forty-mile round-trip commute for most of the week without having any range anxiety issues. Charging anxiety is a different story. If you have been reading my electric and plug-in hybrid reviews, then you’ll know that I only have access to 120V charging at home. Plugging the Niro EV after my day job meant waiting over sixteen hours for a full charge. This caused me to not want to venture out far unless I had some important errands to run as it would mean a longer time for a recharge. If I had completely depleted the battery, I would be waiting over two days for the battery to recharge. If you have a 240V charger, that time drops to 9.5 hours for a full-recharge. Finding a quick charger has gotten easier in the past year or two, but it is still a hit and miss affair. There are no quick chargers near where I live (unless I have a Tesla). It's slightly better further south where I work as there some around the area. But that introduces its own set of problems such setting aside the time to charge up the vehicle to finding if one works. I should note that I didn’t get the chance to try quick charging with the Niro EV during my week. Handling is slightly better in the Niro EV thanks to the additional weight of the battery pack which reduces body roll. Steering is very light when turning, but will surprise you with how quick and accurate it deals with changes in direction. Ride quality is a little bit firm with some bumps and imperfections making their way inside. Where the Niro EV shines is noise isolation. During my work commute, I was surprised by how little wind and road noise came inside. The major downside to the Niro EV is its limited availability. At the time of this writing, Kia is only selling the Niro EV is twelve states - most of them having Zero Emission Vehicle (or ZEV) programs that require automakers to sell a certain amount of electric vehicles in their lineups. Nothing is stopping you from purchasing a Niro EV in one of the states that it is available, but I’m wondering how many people will do that. Pricing for the Niro EV begins at $38,500 for the base EX model. I had the EX Premium at $44,000 which adds such goodies as an eight-inch touchscreen, premium audio system, heated and ventilated front seats; sunroof. Add in a $1,000 Launch Edition package (LED headlights, front parking sensors, and auto-dimming rear-view mirror), and my as-tested price came to $45,995. Expensive bit of kit, but the Niro EV does come with a long list of standard features including heated outside mirrors with power folding; seven-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto; adaptive cruise control, blind-spot monitoring, and push-button start. Plus, the Niro EV qualifies for the full $7,500 federal tax credit which may sway some buyers when it comes time to do their taxes. The Kia Niro EV is the first electric vehicle that I could see myself living with. It drives for the most part as a normal vehicle and offers enough range for most people. The big item you need to be aware of is charging. If you decide to purchase, be sure to get a 240V charger and check to see if there are any sort of fast chargers in your area. It may mean the difference between worry-free and a large amount of anxiety. Disclaimer: Kia Provided the Niro EV, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas Year: 2019 Make: Kia Model: Niro EV Trim: EX Premium Engine: 356V Permanent Magnet Synchronous Electric Motor Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, Lithium Ion Polymer Battery Pack Horsepower @ RPM: 201 @ 3,800 - 8,000 Torque @ RPM: 291 @ 0 - 3,600 Estimated Range: 239 Miles Curb Weight: 3,854 lbs Location of Manufacture: Base Price: $44,000 As Tested Price: $46,045 (Includes $1,045.00 Destination Charge) Options: Launch Edition - $1,000.00
  4. When Toyota introduced the last-generation Avalon for the 2014 model year, I was shocked by how Toyota had built the better Lexus ES. On the surface, this seems a bit crazy. But Toyota had put a lot of effort into shedding the image of Avalon of an old person’s car by bringing a modern and sleek look; luxurious interior, and a balance between a relaxing ride and sporty dynamics. This became more apparent when compared to the ES launched a couple of years earlier, looking very dated in terms of looks and driving like a cream puff. The times are a changing and the two brands have launched new versions of their respective sedans within the past year. I find myself wondering if Toyota still builds the better Lexus or if the ES has finally stepped up and can give the Avalon a real challenge. Exterior Toyota stuck with the shape of the previous Avalon but gave it some refinement. The low roofline and sloping rear glass shape are paired with more aggressive rear end featuring a full-length taillight. Where the new design falls apart is in the front. Toyota must have taken some of the pages out of Lexus’ design book on grille design as the Avalon has a massive grille. Lower trim models make do with black slats for the insert, but my Hybrid Limited tester features chrome slats that make it more polarizing. I understand Toyota wants to give the Avalon a bit more presence on the road, but this new grille design is a bit much. The ES 350 is a different story as Lexus’ designers pulled off an extensive transformation. Wearing a toned-down version of the brand’s current design language, the new ES has an overall look of something formidable and elegant. The spindle grille is front and center, but Lexus has made it slightly smaller to have fit in with the flowing lines. Other design traits include a sloping roofline and shortened rear deck. Interior Like the exterior, the ES’ interior is completely unrecognizable from the outgoing model. Gone are the cheap feeling and mismatch plastics. In their places is a combination of leather, soft-touch plastics, and wood trim that brings forth a sense of premium uniformity. Ergonomics are also top of the class with such touches as control knobs sitting on either side of the instrument panel, and controls for the climate and audio being in easy reach for driver and passenger. Those sitting in the front are treated to leather-covered seats that provide an excellent balance between support and coddle. Those sitting in the back seat might complain about the low position, but will like the ample amount of head and legroom. Stepping inside the Avalon Hybrid, Toyota has given it a major makeover. Gone is the flowing and rounded center stack with capacitive touch controls. Instead, the Avalon uses a narrower and blocky center stack with actual buttons. I’m sad to see the touch controls go away as I found them to be quite responsive. Toyota likely dropped them as buyers complained there was no feedback - a click sound or pulsation - to whoever was using it. Other changes include a slim chrome bar running along the dash vents and more color choices. Finding a comfortable position in the Avalon was no problem due to the numerous amount of power adjustments available on the Limited. Like the ES, the Avalon’s seats strike the balance of comfort and support just right. In the back, there is an abundance of legroom that allows passengers to stretch out. Headroom is fine for most adults. Infotainment Toyota has installed the latest version of Entune for the 2019 Avalon. While looking somewhat dated with a muted color palette and dull screen, Entune retains its ease of use. The menus with large touchscreen buttons make it very easy to move around the system, along with clearly marked buttons and knobs sitting on either side. Toyota has also got with times and made the Avalon the first model to feature CarPlay integration. Those wanting Android Auto will need to wait until 2020. If there is an Achilles heel to the ES 350, that would be Lexus’ Remote Touch. I have written numerously about how using this system is not only a pain, but very distracting when driving. Take for example changing an XMSirius station. Look at the screen to see where the cursor is. Use the touchpad to move the cursor to the station you want, making sure to keep an eye on the screen. Press down on the touchpad to make the selection, hoping you’re finger doesn’t slip and causes something else to happen. This whole routine plays out time and time again whenever you want to do something. Even Apple CarPlay which was introduced for 2019 is a pain to use with Remote Touch. There is salvation on the horizon. Earlier this year, Lexus unveiled an updated RX crossover with a touchscreen for the infotainment system. The automaker said that it will be available on other models in the coming years. Here’s to hoping the ES is one of the first recipients. Performance Both vehicles come with the choice of either a 3.5L V6 or hybrid system using a 2.5L four-cylinder. An eight-speed automatic is teamed with the V6. The hybrid uses a CVT. The 3.5 V6 has been given a bit more power for 2019, now producing 302 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque. This bump makes for a noticeable improvement in overall acceleration, feeling slightly quicker than the last ES 350 I drove. Power builds on a smooth and linear fashion. The engine is also noticeably refined, with barely a rumble coming from underneath the hood. With only a total output of 215 horsepower, the hybrid system in the Toyota Avalon may seem underpowered. This is only an issue when climbing a steep hill or needing to make an immediate pass. Otherwise, the hybrid system provides plenty of oomph for the daily drive. I like how the system seamless transitioned from electric to hybrid power with only a minimal buzz coming from the engine bay. Like other Toyota hybrids, the Avalon Hybrid can travel on electric power alone - albeit a short distance and at speeds below 25 mph. In EPA testing, the ES 350 returns 22 City/33 Highway/26 Combined and the Avalon Hybrid returns 43 City/43 Highway/43 Combined. I clocked averages of 25 in the ES 350 and 40 in the Avalon Hybrid. Ride and Handling Aside from engines, the Avalon Hybrid and ES 350 share another vital component. Under the skin of both models is a version of Toyota New Global Architecture (TGNA) known as GA-K. This variant provides the stiffer structure and lower-center of gravity found on other TGNA models, but allows both Toyota and Lexus to build larger front-wheel drive vehicles. In the Avalon Hybrid, the move to GA-K doesn’t change much. The last-generation model showed that you could have good driving dynamics and retain a mission of comfort. The new model continues that with slightly improved handling and sharper steering response. The ES 350 is a different story. Changing over to GA-K transforms the model from a creampuff on wheels to a luxury sedan with that can take corners without embarrassing itself. Body roll is significantly reduced and the steering responds to inputs without fuss. Neither one of these sedans will challenge the likes of the Germans or the Kia Stinger GT, but they will not fall over and cry uncle when pushed. Ride quality is still one of the impressive points for both models. On some of roughest, pothole-ladened streets that the Metro Detroit has on offer, the Avalon Hybrid and ES 350 made it feel like mere ripples. Not much outside noise comes inside the cabin of either model, making them a perfect place to decompress after a long day. Verdict Let’s begin with the 2020 Avalon Hybrid. This updated sedan didn’t surprise me and that’s fine. Aside from the styling, Toyota made small changes to address certain issues of the previous-generation and build upon its strengths. Getting 40 MPG is still an impressive trait for such a big sedan. With a starting price tag of $35,560 for the gas version and $36,650 for the hybrid, the Avalon is still the one to buy if you want the luxuries of the ES without the luxury tax. The ES 350, on the other hand, is the more impressive of the two. You have to wonder if Lexus was motivated by what Toyota was able to pull off with last-generation Avalon. In a lot of ways, the ES 350 looks and feels like a proper luxury car. Add in a new platform that doesn’t make you feel like you’re going to tip over and Lexus is very close to that idea of “Experience Amazing”. The only fault is Remote Touch which sours many of the dramatic improvements. If Lexus can get that new touchscreen into the ES ASAP, I would gladly give it my “Most Improved Car of the Year” award. How I would configure a 2019 Lexus ES 350 or Toyota Avalon Hybrid Starting with the ES 350, I would skip the base model and go with the Luxury trim. This adds such items as leather upholstery, heated and ventilated seats, and ambient lighting. On top of this, I would add Blind Spot Monitoring package and a power rear sunshade. With destination, I'm out the door with a final price of $45,540. For the Avalon Hybrid, I would pick the XSE. This is positioned as the sporty model with various exterior treatments including a mesh insert for the grille. Other standard equipment includes a moonroof, leatherette and suede upholstery, and wireless phone charging. The only two options I would tick are the Ruby Flare Pearl paint and 14-Speaker JBL Audio System. Add destination and the final price comes to $41,480. Alternatives Genesis G80: A perennial favorite, the G80 slots between the Avalon Hybrid and ES 350 in terms of price - $41,750. It comes showered with loads of standard equipment and an excellent engine lineup. It cannot match the ES and Avalon in terms of interior design, but provides a more modern and easier to understand infotainment system. Ride quality is similar in all three vehicles, but the ES and Avalon have a slight edge in handling. Disclaimer: Toyota Provided the vehicles, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas Year: 2019 Make: Lexus Model: ES 350 Trim: Luxury Engine: 3.5L DOHC 24-Valve with Dual VVT-i V6 Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, Eight-Speed Automatic Horsepower @ RPM: 302 @ 6,600 Torque @ RPM: 267 @ 4,700 Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 22/33/26 Curb Weight: 3,649 lbs Location of Manufacture: Georgetown, Kentucky Base Price: $42,755 As Tested Price: $45,955 (Includes $1,025 Destination Charge)* Options: Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, Intuitive Parking Assist with Auto Braking - $1,065.00 18-Inch Split Five-Spoke Alloy Noise Reduction Wheels - $950.00 Wood and Leather Trimmed Steering Wheel - $300.00 Power Rear Sunshade - $210.00 *No window sticker was provided for the ES 350. This is me taking a guess as to final price and options. Year: 2019 Make: Toyota Model: Avalon Hybrid Trim: Limited Engine: 2.5L 16-valve DOHC with Dual VVT-i Four-Cylinder, 650V Electric Motor Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, CVT Horsepower @ RPM: 176 @ 5,700 (Gas); 118 (88 kW) (Electric); 215 (Total Output) Torque @ RPM: 163 @ 3,600-5,200 (Gas) Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 43/43/43 Curb Weight: 3,715 lbs Location of Manufacture: Georgetown, Kentucky Base Price: $42,800 As Tested Price: $45,118 (Includes $920.00 Destination Charge) Options: Advanced Safety Package - $1,150.00 Carpet Mat Package - $248.00 View full article
  5. When Toyota introduced the last-generation Avalon for the 2014 model year, I was shocked by how Toyota had built the better Lexus ES. On the surface, this seems a bit crazy. But Toyota had put a lot of effort into shedding the image of Avalon of an old person’s car by bringing a modern and sleek look; luxurious interior, and a balance between a relaxing ride and sporty dynamics. This became more apparent when compared to the ES launched a couple of years earlier, looking very dated in terms of looks and driving like a cream puff. The times are a changing and the two brands have launched new versions of their respective sedans within the past year. I find myself wondering if Toyota still builds the better Lexus or if the ES has finally stepped up and can give the Avalon a real challenge. Exterior Toyota stuck with the shape of the previous Avalon but gave it some refinement. The low roofline and sloping rear glass shape are paired with more aggressive rear end featuring a full-length taillight. Where the new design falls apart is in the front. Toyota must have taken some of the pages out of Lexus’ design book on grille design as the Avalon has a massive grille. Lower trim models make do with black slats for the insert, but my Hybrid Limited tester features chrome slats that make it more polarizing. I understand Toyota wants to give the Avalon a bit more presence on the road, but this new grille design is a bit much. The ES 350 is a different story as Lexus’ designers pulled off an extensive transformation. Wearing a toned-down version of the brand’s current design language, the new ES has an overall look of something formidable and elegant. The spindle grille is front and center, but Lexus has made it slightly smaller to have fit in with the flowing lines. Other design traits include a sloping roofline and shortened rear deck. Interior Like the exterior, the ES’ interior is completely unrecognizable from the outgoing model. Gone are the cheap feeling and mismatch plastics. In their places is a combination of leather, soft-touch plastics, and wood trim that brings forth a sense of premium uniformity. Ergonomics are also top of the class with such touches as control knobs sitting on either side of the instrument panel, and controls for the climate and audio being in easy reach for driver and passenger. Those sitting in the front are treated to leather-covered seats that provide an excellent balance between support and coddle. Those sitting in the back seat might complain about the low position, but will like the ample amount of head and legroom. Stepping inside the Avalon Hybrid, Toyota has given it a major makeover. Gone is the flowing and rounded center stack with capacitive touch controls. Instead, the Avalon uses a narrower and blocky center stack with actual buttons. I’m sad to see the touch controls go away as I found them to be quite responsive. Toyota likely dropped them as buyers complained there was no feedback - a click sound or pulsation - to whoever was using it. Other changes include a slim chrome bar running along the dash vents and more color choices. Finding a comfortable position in the Avalon was no problem due to the numerous amount of power adjustments available on the Limited. Like the ES, the Avalon’s seats strike the balance of comfort and support just right. In the back, there is an abundance of legroom that allows passengers to stretch out. Headroom is fine for most adults. Infotainment Toyota has installed the latest version of Entune for the 2019 Avalon. While looking somewhat dated with a muted color palette and dull screen, Entune retains its ease of use. The menus with large touchscreen buttons make it very easy to move around the system, along with clearly marked buttons and knobs sitting on either side. Toyota has also got with times and made the Avalon the first model to feature CarPlay integration. Those wanting Android Auto will need to wait until 2020. If there is an Achilles heel to the ES 350, that would be Lexus’ Remote Touch. I have written numerously about how using this system is not only a pain, but very distracting when driving. Take for example changing an XMSirius station. Look at the screen to see where the cursor is. Use the touchpad to move the cursor to the station you want, making sure to keep an eye on the screen. Press down on the touchpad to make the selection, hoping you’re finger doesn’t slip and causes something else to happen. This whole routine plays out time and time again whenever you want to do something. Even Apple CarPlay which was introduced for 2019 is a pain to use with Remote Touch. There is salvation on the horizon. Earlier this year, Lexus unveiled an updated RX crossover with a touchscreen for the infotainment system. The automaker said that it will be available on other models in the coming years. Here’s to hoping the ES is one of the first recipients. Performance Both vehicles come with the choice of either a 3.5L V6 or hybrid system using a 2.5L four-cylinder. An eight-speed automatic is teamed with the V6. The hybrid uses a CVT. The 3.5 V6 has been given a bit more power for 2019, now producing 302 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque. This bump makes for a noticeable improvement in overall acceleration, feeling slightly quicker than the last ES 350 I drove. Power builds on a smooth and linear fashion. The engine is also noticeably refined, with barely a rumble coming from underneath the hood. With only a total output of 215 horsepower, the hybrid system in the Toyota Avalon may seem underpowered. This is only an issue when climbing a steep hill or needing to make an immediate pass. Otherwise, the hybrid system provides plenty of oomph for the daily drive. I like how the system seamless transitioned from electric to hybrid power with only a minimal buzz coming from the engine bay. Like other Toyota hybrids, the Avalon Hybrid can travel on electric power alone - albeit a short distance and at speeds below 25 mph. In EPA testing, the ES 350 returns 22 City/33 Highway/26 Combined and the Avalon Hybrid returns 43 City/43 Highway/43 Combined. I clocked averages of 25 in the ES 350 and 40 in the Avalon Hybrid. Ride and Handling Aside from engines, the Avalon Hybrid and ES 350 share another vital component. Under the skin of both models is a version of Toyota New Global Architecture (TGNA) known as GA-K. This variant provides the stiffer structure and lower-center of gravity found on other TGNA models, but allows both Toyota and Lexus to build larger front-wheel drive vehicles. In the Avalon Hybrid, the move to GA-K doesn’t change much. The last-generation model showed that you could have good driving dynamics and retain a mission of comfort. The new model continues that with slightly improved handling and sharper steering response. The ES 350 is a different story. Changing over to GA-K transforms the model from a creampuff on wheels to a luxury sedan with that can take corners without embarrassing itself. Body roll is significantly reduced and the steering responds to inputs without fuss. Neither one of these sedans will challenge the likes of the Germans or the Kia Stinger GT, but they will not fall over and cry uncle when pushed. Ride quality is still one of the impressive points for both models. On some of roughest, pothole-ladened streets that the Metro Detroit has on offer, the Avalon Hybrid and ES 350 made it feel like mere ripples. Not much outside noise comes inside the cabin of either model, making them a perfect place to decompress after a long day. Verdict Let’s begin with the 2020 Avalon Hybrid. This updated sedan didn’t surprise me and that’s fine. Aside from the styling, Toyota made small changes to address certain issues of the previous-generation and build upon its strengths. Getting 40 MPG is still an impressive trait for such a big sedan. With a starting price tag of $35,560 for the gas version and $36,650 for the hybrid, the Avalon is still the one to buy if you want the luxuries of the ES without the luxury tax. The ES 350, on the other hand, is the more impressive of the two. You have to wonder if Lexus was motivated by what Toyota was able to pull off with last-generation Avalon. In a lot of ways, the ES 350 looks and feels like a proper luxury car. Add in a new platform that doesn’t make you feel like you’re going to tip over and Lexus is very close to that idea of “Experience Amazing”. The only fault is Remote Touch which sours many of the dramatic improvements. If Lexus can get that new touchscreen into the ES ASAP, I would gladly give it my “Most Improved Car of the Year” award. How I would configure a 2019 Lexus ES 350 or Toyota Avalon Hybrid Starting with the ES 350, I would skip the base model and go with the Luxury trim. This adds such items as leather upholstery, heated and ventilated seats, and ambient lighting. On top of this, I would add Blind Spot Monitoring package and a power rear sunshade. With destination, I'm out the door with a final price of $45,540. For the Avalon Hybrid, I would pick the XSE. This is positioned as the sporty model with various exterior treatments including a mesh insert for the grille. Other standard equipment includes a moonroof, leatherette and suede upholstery, and wireless phone charging. The only two options I would tick are the Ruby Flare Pearl paint and 14-Speaker JBL Audio System. Add destination and the final price comes to $41,480. Alternatives Genesis G80: A perennial favorite, the G80 slots between the Avalon Hybrid and ES 350 in terms of price - $41,750. It comes showered with loads of standard equipment and an excellent engine lineup. It cannot match the ES and Avalon in terms of interior design, but provides a more modern and easier to understand infotainment system. Ride quality is similar in all three vehicles, but the ES and Avalon have a slight edge in handling. Disclaimer: Toyota Provided the vehicles, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas Year: 2019 Make: Lexus Model: ES 350 Trim: Luxury Engine: 3.5L DOHC 24-Valve with Dual VVT-i V6 Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, Eight-Speed Automatic Horsepower @ RPM: 302 @ 6,600 Torque @ RPM: 267 @ 4,700 Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 22/33/26 Curb Weight: 3,649 lbs Location of Manufacture: Georgetown, Kentucky Base Price: $42,755 As Tested Price: $45,955 (Includes $1,025 Destination Charge)* Options: Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, Intuitive Parking Assist with Auto Braking - $1,065.00 18-Inch Split Five-Spoke Alloy Noise Reduction Wheels - $950.00 Wood and Leather Trimmed Steering Wheel - $300.00 Power Rear Sunshade - $210.00 *No window sticker was provided for the ES 350. This is me taking a guess as to final price and options. Year: 2019 Make: Toyota Model: Avalon Hybrid Trim: Limited Engine: 2.5L 16-valve DOHC with Dual VVT-i Four-Cylinder, 650V Electric Motor Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, CVT Horsepower @ RPM: 176 @ 5,700 (Gas); 118 (88 kW) (Electric); 215 (Total Output) Torque @ RPM: 163 @ 3,600-5,200 (Gas) Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 43/43/43 Curb Weight: 3,715 lbs Location of Manufacture: Georgetown, Kentucky Base Price: $42,800 As Tested Price: $45,118 (Includes $920.00 Destination Charge) Options: Advanced Safety Package - $1,150.00 Carpet Mat Package - $248.00
  6. Expectation can be a very dangerous thing. You come into something thinking it will blow your mind and more often than not, it comes up short. That’s how I felt during the first few days into a loan of a 2019 Buick Regal GS. What was being presented didn’t match up with my experience. But over the week I had the vehicle, it began to grow on. That isn’t to say some issues need to be addressed. At first glance, you might think Buick decided to stick with a sedan shape. But the sloping rear hatch gives away its true identity as a Sportback. This helps give the impression that the Regal is sporty, helped further by short overhangs. By adding small touches such as large front air intakes, GS-specific 19-inch wheels. Brembo front brake calipers finished in Red, and a small lip spoiler, the GS transforms the Regal into looking like a red-blooded sports sedan. The interior sadly doesn’t match up with what is being presented on the outside. While there was some effort to make the GS stand out with faux carbon-fiber trim, special sport seats, and GS badging, it doesn’t quite match with what is being presented outside. Not helping are some cheap plastics littered throughout the Regal GS’ interior. If this was a standard Regal, I may have given it a slight pass. But considering this GS carries a price of almost $43k, it becomes a big issue. The interior does redeem it somewhat with a logical and simple layout. No one had any complaints about whether the controls were confusing or hard to reach. Let’s talk about the front seats, The Regal GS comes fitted with racing-style front seat with aggressive side bolstering and faux holes towards the top where the belts for a harness would go into. This design seems more at home in a hardcore Corvette than a Buick. Before you start thinking that the seat design only allows a small group of people to fit, Buick has fitted adjustable bolstering to allow a wide set of body types to sit comfortably. With this and other power adjustments, I was able to find a position that suited me. Over a long drive, the seats were able to provide the right amount of support and comfort. The back seats don’t get the same “race car” treatment as the front, but they do offer ample head and legroom for most passengers. Cargo space is quite impressive with 31.5 cubic feet with the seats up and 60.7 when folded. The Kia Stinger I drove back in January pales in comparison with 23.3 and 40.9 cubic feet. The Regal GS features an eight-inch touchscreen with the new Buick Infotainment 3 system. As I mentioned in my Silverado/Sierra 1500 review, the new system is worlds better than Intellilink. The interface has been cleaned up with simpler graphics and fonts that are much easier to read. Also seeing noticeable improvements is the overall performance. The system is much faster when bringing up different functions or crunching a route on the optional navigation system. Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and OnStar 4G LTE round off the system. With the effort Buick has put in, you might have the feeling that the Regal GS has something special under the hood. That isn’t the case. Under the hood of the GS is GM’s venerable 3.6L V6 with 310 horsepower and 282 pound-feet. While the V6 packs 40 more horsepower than the 2.0L turbo-four from the last-generation model, it is also down 13 pound-feet. This absence becomes apparent when you decide to sprint away from a stoplight or exiting a corner as you need to work the engine to get that rush of power. A numb throttle response doesn’t help. If you resist from attack mode, the V6 reveals a quiet and refined nature. But again, you will need to work the engine when merging or making a pass. Before someone shouts “put a turbo on it”, Buick cannot do that as there isn’t enough space in the engine bay due to the design of the platform. We’ve known about this issue since 2016 when Holden was gearing up to launch the Commodore - its version of the OpelVauxhall Insignia. The nine-speed automatic transmission goes about its business with unobtrusive shifts when going about your daily errands, but offers up snappy shifts when you decide to get aggressive. A glaring omission on this sports sedan is the lack of paddle shifters. Fuel economy for the 2019 Regal GS is 19 City/27 Highway/22 Combined. I saw an average of 20 during the week. This can likely to be attributed to the test vehicle having under 1,000 miles on the odometer. On paper, the Regal GS’ handling credentials seem top-notch with Continuous Damping Control (CDC) system and a GKN all-wheel drive system featuring a twin-clutch torque-vectoring rear differential. The latter allows a varying amount of power sent to each rear wheel to improve cornering. In the real world, the GS is more Grand Tourer than Gran Sport. While the sedan shows little body roll, its reflexes are slightly muted due to a nearly 3,800 pound curb weight. The steering provides a decent amount of weight when turning, but don’t expect a lot of road feel. What about that AWD system? For the most part, you really won’t notice working unless you decide to push the limits or practice your winter driving skills in a snowy and empty parking lot. Thanks to the CDC system, the Regal GS’ ride is surprisingly smooth. With the vehicle in Tour, the suspension glides over bumps and imperfections. The ride begins to get choppy if you One area that I’m glad Buick is still focusing on is noise isolation. Road and wind noise is almost non-existent. The 2019 Buick Regal GS is a case of expectations being put too high. Despite what the exterior and sports seats of the interior may hint at, this isn’t a sports sedan like a Kia Stinger GT or something from a German luxury brand. But my feelings began to change when I thought of the GS as being more of a grand tourer. It has the ingredients such as a refined powertrain, a suspension that can be altered to provide either a comfortable or sporty ride; and minimizing the amount of outside noise. There lies the overall problem with Regal GS as Buick doesn’t quite know what it wants to be. Does it want to be a sport sedan or a luxury sedan with grand tourer tendencies? This confusion will likely cause many people to look at something else which is a big shame. How I Would Configure a 2019 Buick Regal GS. My particular configuration would be similar to the vehicle tested here with the Driver Confidence Package #2, Sights and Sounds, and Appearance packages. The only change would be adding the White Frost Tricoat color, which adds an additional $1,095 to the price. All together, it comes out to $44,210. Alternatives to the 2019 Buick Regal GS: Kia Stinger: The big elephant in the room when talking about the Regal GS. For a similar amount of cash, you can step into the base GT model with its 365 horsepower twin-turbo V6 and rear-wheel drive setup (AWD adds $2,200). I came away very impressed with the styling, performance on tap from the V6, and handling prowess. Downsides include the interior design being a bit too minimalist and the ride being a bit rough. Volkswagen Arteon: The other dark horse to the Regal GS. There is no doubt that the Arteon is quite handsome with flowing lines and sleek fastback shape. Having sat in one at the Detroit Auto Show earlier this year, I found it to be very roomy and upscale in terms of the interior materials. I hope to get some time behind the wheel in the near future to see how it measures up in handling. Disclaimer: Buick Provided the Regal GS, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas Year: 2019 Make: Buick Model: Regal Trim: GS Engine: 3.6L V6 Driveline: Nine-Speed Automatic, All-Wheel Drive Horsepower @ RPM: 310 @ 6,800 Torque @ RPM: 282 @ 5,200 Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 19/27/22 Curb Weight: 3,796 lbs Location of Manufacture: Rüsselsheim Germany Base Price: $39,070 As Tested Price: $43,115 (Includes $925.00 Destination Charge) Options: Driver Confidence Package #2: $1,690.00 Sights and Sounds Package: $945.00 Appearance Package: $485.00
  7. Quarterly: Ford Motor Company - Not Reported General Motors Co. - Not Reported Tesla - Not Reported FCA US LLC - Not Reported Monthly: Audi of America - Up 0.8% for the month, Down 5% for the year BMW of North America - Down 1.7% for the month, Down 1.2% for the year Genesis Motor America - Not Reported Honda Motor Co. - Up 1.9% for the month, Down 0.9% for the year Hyundai Motor America - Up 12.13% for the month, Up 3.10% for the year Infiniti USA - Down 11.2% for the month, Down 12.5% for the year Jaguar Land Rover North America - Up 5% for the month, Up 5% for the year Kia Motors America - Up 0.6% for the month, Up 3.3% for the year Mazda North American Operations - Down 3.5% for the month, Down 13.9% for the year Mercedes-Benz USA - 19.5% for the month, Down 4.0% for the year Mitsubishi Motors North America - Down 13.4% for the month, Up 3.2% for the year Nissan Group - Down 9.1% for the month, Down 8.3% for the year Porsche Cars North America Inc. - Up 23.3% for the month, Up 5.3% for the year Subaru of America, Inc. - Up 7.9% for the month, Up 5.6% for the year Toyota Motor North America - Up 0.2% for the month, Down 2.6% for the year Volkswagen of America - Up 2.2% for the month, Up 6.1% for the year Volvo Cars of North America, LLC - Up 2.0% for the month, Up 4.7% for the year Brands (Quarterly): Alfa Romeo - Not Reported Buick - Not Reported Cadillac - Not Reported Chevrolet - Not Reported Chrysler - Not Reported Dodge - Not Reported Ford - Not Reported Fiat - Not Reported GMC - Not Reported Jeep - Not Reported Lincoln - Not Reported Ram Trucks - Not Reported Tesla - Not Reported Brands (Monthly): Acura - Down 3.7% - 12,759 MTD / 86,526 YTD Audi - Down 0.3% - 19,409 MTD / 101,440 YTD BMW - Up 4.7% - 24,842 MTD / 199,865 YTD Genesis - Not reported Honda - Up 2.5% - 128,537 MTD / 831,765 YTD Hyundai - Up 12.3% - 57,340 MTD / 390,668 YTD Infiniti - Down 11.2% - 8,660 MTD / 71,718 YTD Jaguar - Up 7% - 2,020 MTD Kia - Up 0.6% - 53,405 MTD / 358,249 YTD Land Rover - Up 4% - 6,456 MTD Lexus - Down 1.5% - 25,025 MTD / 160,760 YTD Mazda - Down 3.5% - 23,292 MTD / 161,847 YTD Mercedes-Benz - Up 22.9% - 24,612 MTD / 172,008 YTD Mercedes-Benz Vans - Down 1.5% 2,878 MTD / 18,903 YTD MINI - Down 34.2% - 2,827 MTD / 20,410 YTD Mitsubishi - Down 13.4% - 8,613 MTD / 79,710 YTD Nissan - Down 8.9% - 90,220 MTD / 744,198 YTD Porsche - Up 23.3% - 4,956 MTD / 35,213 YTD Smart - Down 45.6% - 56 MTD / 552 YTD Subaru - Up 7.9% - 64,106 MTD / 403,631 YTD Toyota - Up 0.4% - 184,179 MTD / 1,200,552 YTD Volkswagen - Up 2.2% - 31,188 MTD / 215,796 YTD Volvo - Up 2.0% - 8,795 MTD / 58,915 YTD View full article
  8. Quarterly: Ford Motor Company - Not Reported General Motors Co. - Not Reported Tesla - Not Reported FCA US LLC - Not Reported Monthly: Audi of America - Up 0.8% for the month, Down 5% for the year BMW of North America - Down 1.7% for the month, Down 1.2% for the year Genesis Motor America - Not Reported Honda Motor Co. - Up 1.9% for the month, Down 0.9% for the year Hyundai Motor America - Up 12.13% for the month, Up 3.10% for the year Infiniti USA - Down 11.2% for the month, Down 12.5% for the year Jaguar Land Rover North America - Up 5% for the month, Up 5% for the year Kia Motors America - Up 0.6% for the month, Up 3.3% for the year Mazda North American Operations - Down 3.5% for the month, Down 13.9% for the year Mercedes-Benz USA - 19.5% for the month, Down 4.0% for the year Mitsubishi Motors North America - Down 13.4% for the month, Up 3.2% for the year Nissan Group - Down 9.1% for the month, Down 8.3% for the year Porsche Cars North America Inc. - Up 23.3% for the month, Up 5.3% for the year Subaru of America, Inc. - Up 7.9% for the month, Up 5.6% for the year Toyota Motor North America - Up 0.2% for the month, Down 2.6% for the year Volkswagen of America - Up 2.2% for the month, Up 6.1% for the year Volvo Cars of North America, LLC - Up 2.0% for the month, Up 4.7% for the year Brands (Quarterly): Alfa Romeo - Not Reported Buick - Not Reported Cadillac - Not Reported Chevrolet - Not Reported Chrysler - Not Reported Dodge - Not Reported Ford - Not Reported Fiat - Not Reported GMC - Not Reported Jeep - Not Reported Lincoln - Not Reported Ram Trucks - Not Reported Tesla - Not Reported Brands (Monthly): Acura - Down 3.7% - 12,759 MTD / 86,526 YTD Audi - Down 0.3% - 19,409 MTD / 101,440 YTD BMW - Up 4.7% - 24,842 MTD / 199,865 YTD Genesis - Not reported Honda - Up 2.5% - 128,537 MTD / 831,765 YTD Hyundai - Up 12.3% - 57,340 MTD / 390,668 YTD Infiniti - Down 11.2% - 8,660 MTD / 71,718 YTD Jaguar - Up 7% - 2,020 MTD Kia - Up 0.6% - 53,405 MTD / 358,249 YTD Land Rover - Up 4% - 6,456 MTD Lexus - Down 1.5% - 25,025 MTD / 160,760 YTD Mazda - Down 3.5% - 23,292 MTD / 161,847 YTD Mercedes-Benz - Up 22.9% - 24,612 MTD / 172,008 YTD Mercedes-Benz Vans - Down 1.5% 2,878 MTD / 18,903 YTD MINI - Down 34.2% - 2,827 MTD / 20,410 YTD Mitsubishi - Down 13.4% - 8,613 MTD / 79,710 YTD Nissan - Down 8.9% - 90,220 MTD / 744,198 YTD Porsche - Up 23.3% - 4,956 MTD / 35,213 YTD Smart - Down 45.6% - 56 MTD / 552 YTD Subaru - Up 7.9% - 64,106 MTD / 403,631 YTD Toyota - Up 0.4% - 184,179 MTD / 1,200,552 YTD Volkswagen - Up 2.2% - 31,188 MTD / 215,796 YTD Volvo - Up 2.0% - 8,795 MTD / 58,915 YTD
  9. It is no secret that Mazda is planning to bring over the turbocharged 2.5L four-cylinder from the CX-9 and Mazda6, considering the various leaked documents that have come out in the past few months and the announcement of the Japanese market version. Now, new documents have come to light revealing that the U.S. variant will get the turbo engine, along with some other key changes. The leaked "Product Information Bulletin" reveals the turbo engine (227 hp and 310 lb-ft of torque) will be available on two new trims - Grand Touring Reserve and Signature. Somewhat surprising, the engine will not be available on the Grand Touring like on the 6. All-wheel drive will be standard for the turbo engine. Mazda will also be adding an updated G-Vectoring Control Plus system (uses the braking system to keep the car stable when exiting a corner), and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for Touring and models above. What is somewhat surprising is no mention of the 2.2L turbodiesel in the document, despite the EPA fuel economy figures coming out. Maybe Mazda got cold feet and has decided to pull the plug or that the 2.5T threatens the diesel as it produces the same amount of torque. This is just speculation on our part and maybe the diesel will come. As for pricing, the 2019 Mazda CX-5 begins at $25,345 after the $995 destination charge. Adding the turbo engine adds a significant cost - $35,865 for the Grand Touring Reserve and $37,885 for the Signature. Source: Reddit View full article
  10. The news about the 2019 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra have been constant barrage about how they aren’t doing so well in the sales charts. In fact, Ram has taken second place in overall truck sales from the Silverado. General Motors is quick to point that Ram has been increasing amount of money on the hoods of the 2019 Ram 1500, along with the last-generation model being sold alongside. But could there be more to this slump? What if the new Silverado and Sierra didn’t move the needle as far as the competition? The new Silverado and Sierra continue to separate from one another in exterior design. The basic shape may be the same, but it is the details where the two begin to develop their own identities. On the Sierra, it goes for some polarization with its gaping maw of a grille and c-shaped headlights. Chevrolet is a bit more restrained with the Silverado featuring a split bar grille and separate headlight housings. More differences can be seen turning to the side as the Silverado has slightly more pronounced fenders than the Sierra. Both trucks arrived in their off-road trims: Trail Boss for the Silverado and AT4 for the Sierra. This is denoted by two-inch lift for the suspension, blacked-out trim pieces, and meaty off-road tires featuring some sharp-looking wheels. I tend not to like off-road models as they go overboard with the “LOOK AT ME” bits placed on it, which I get why a number of buyers absolutely love it. But the Trail Boss and AT4 find that nice point where they look the business without being too shouty about it. GMC is also trying to set itself apart in terms of the tailgate. My Sierra AT4 tester came equipped with the MultiPro tailgate which offers “six functions and positions.” They include, Primary Gate (Full Tailgate) Primary Gate Load Stop: Panel that holds longer items in the bed Easy Access: Flip the inner part of the tailgate to allow for better access for items in the bed Step to allow for easy entry and exit from the bed Inner Gate with Load Stop Inner Gate as a work surface You will not find a physical tailgate handle. Instead, there are two buttons that sit between the backup camera. The top button releases the inner gate, while the bottom allows the full tailgate to open. Opening the inner gate wasn’t as smooth as the full tailgate, feeling like it was sticking at points. A lot of this I would attribute to cold temperatures during the week. Despite this issue, having the inner tailgate give way to allow for better access to the bed and a step does give a unique selling point. I do wonder how will this tailgate design hold-up in the long run. Moving inside, GM is still focusing on functional and practical aspects. This is evident with the large knobs and buttons controlling various functions, and a comprehensive gauge cluster. But this approach does put both trucks behind the pack in terms of interior design and materials when compared against Ford and Ram. I had to do a double-take getting inside the Silverado for the first time as the dashboard really didn’t change that much aside from the colors and slightly altered buttons. This isn’t helped by some of the material choices which look and feel out of place in trucks that carry price tags that are around the $60,000 mark. But the Silverado and Sierra’s interiors do claw some points back in terms of overall comfort. No one will have any issue trying to find a position that works thanks to a generous amount of power seat adjustments and a steering wheel that finally provides tilt-telescope adjustment. Space in the back of crew cabs is massive with loads of head and legroom. Both trucks came with an eight-inch screen (lesser trims get by with a seven-inch screen) and new software - Chevrolet Infotainment 3/GMC Infotainment. The interface looks like a simplified version of MyLink/Intellilink with simpler graphics and easier to read fonts. Moving around the system is easy thanks to the simple menu structure and quick responses for any command. Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration comes standard. Both trucks were able to find my iPhone 7 Plus and bring up the CarPlay interface within seconds of plugging it in. There are four different engines on offer, including a new 2.7L turbo-four. There’s also a turbodiesel V6 that will be arriving for the 2020 model year. Both of my test trucks came with the V8s - Silverado packing a 5.3L and the Sierra using the 6.2L. The 5.3L V8 has not been my engine of choice for the last-generation trucks. Not because of the power on offer, but more of the tuning of the throttle pedal. It made the V8 feel very sluggish and would make the driver push further down on the pedal to get it moving a decent clip. Thankfully, GM has addressed this issue and 5.3 now feel likes it has 355 horsepower and 383 pound-feet of torque. You can lightly press on the accelerator and V8 doesn’t feel artificially overwhelmed. A new eight-speed automatic (standard on higher trims) helps keep the engine right in the sweet spot of power and provides smooth shifts. As for the 6.2L V8, it is a monster. With 420 horsepower and 460 pound-feet, it moves the Sierra at a surprising rate. Making a pass or merging on to a freeway is no problem as there is an abundance of power waiting to be unleashed. A new ten-speed automatic (jointly developed with Ford) helps keep the engine right in the spot of power. Unless you need or want all of the power, the 5.3 is the engine I would recommend for either truck. EPA fuel economy figures for the V8s are 15 City/20 Highway/17 Combined for the 5.3 and 15/19/17 for the 6.2L AT4. My averages for the week were 16.1 for the 5.3 and 15.2 for the 6.2. Ram is still the gold standard when it comes to ride quality due to its rear coil spring setup. But GM isn’t so far behind with its solid rear axle setup. Most bumps and imperfections become mere ripples. Larger potholes didn’t upset either truck, but I would put that towards the off-road suspension. The standard trucks may bounce around. Handling is quite surprising as both trucks feel agile around bends. Noise isolation, for the most part, is excellent, though the knobby tires fitted to the Trail Boss and AT4 do ruin some of the tranquility. My feelings are mixed on the 2019 Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra 1500. GM has either fixed or improved various problems that I have talked about in previous reviews. But it feels GM hasn’t done enough to fully set their trucks apart from the competition. I think this line from my journal says it all. “If General Motors wasn’t touting various aspects of these new trucks such as the aluminum body panels or multi-pro tailgate, I would have thought both models went through a dramatic mid-cycle refresh.” This could give the full explanation as to why the Silverado and Sierra are currently getting beaten out by Ford and Ram Trucks in the sales chart. Buyers may not see any real changes for both trucks when compared against the competition. GM has been on the offensive, saying to be patient. But that approach may not work and may cause the automaker to draw up some drastic measures. That’s the thing about the full-size truck market, you need to show up with the best. Anything less and you’re in danger of losing. How I would configure a 2019 Chevrolet Silverado or GMC Sierra 1500. There are two options I would consider with the Silverado. First is the RST. I would order a 4WD crew cab with a short and opt for the 5.3L V8. From there, I would add the Convenience Package with Bucket Seats, Convenience Package II, Safety Package, and Trailering Package. That brings the final price to $52,745 excluding any discounts I could get. Second is the Trail Boss which gets the 5.3L V8 as standard. Options would mirror the RST and bring the final price to $54,285. If I was to order a Sierra 1500, then I would start with the SLT Crew Cab 4WD with a short bed. This comes with the 5.3L V8 as standard and I would only add two options; Dark Sky Metallic for $495 and the SLT Premium Plus Package for $6,875. This package combines a number of option packages such as the SLT Preferred Package and the two Driver Alert Packages. The final price comes to $60,460 with a $1,000 discount for ordering Premium Plus Package. Alternatives to the 2019 Chevrolet Silverado or GMC Sierra 1500. 2019 Ram 1500: Ram's redesign on the 1500 has helped make it a real challenger to both Ford and GM. The interior raises the bar of what a truck can be with an impressive design and high-quality material choices. It also boasts an impressive list of safety features such as adaptive cruise control. Ride quality is still class leading. What may put some people off is the styling as it looks a bit plain. 2019 Ford F-150: Bestselling for reason, Ford has constantly improved the F-150 to keep it one step ahead of the competition. It features one of the largest selection of powertrains that help give it some impressive towing numbers. A number of trims also gives buyers different options to build their F-150 the way they want. But Ford trails Ram and GM when it comes ride quality. Disclaimer: General Motors Provided the trucks, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas (*Author's Note: Unfortunately, I lost the window sticker to the GMC Sierra 1500 I drove. I have built the truck as close as possible to my memory to get an approximation on price. -WM) Year: 2019 Make: Chevrolet Model: Silverado 1500 Trim: LT Trail Boss Engine: 5.3L VVT DI V8 with Dynamic Fuel Management and Stop/Start Driveline: Eight-Speed Automatic, Four-Wheel Drive Horsepower @ RPM: 355 @ 5,600 Torque @ RPM: 383 @ 4,100 Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 15/20/17 Curb Weight: 5,008 lbs Location of Manufacture: Roanoke, Indiana Base Price: $48,300 As Tested Price: $55,955 (Includes $1,495 Destination Charge) Options: Convenience Package with Bucket Seats - $1,805.00 Convenience Package II - $1,420.00 Off-Road Assist Steps - $895.00 Safety Package I - $890.00 Bed Protection Package - $635.00 Trailer Brake Controller - $275.00 Advanced Trailering Package - $240.00 Year: 2019 Make: GMC Model: Sierra 1500 Trim: AT4 Engine: 6.2L VVT DI V8 with Dynamic Fuel Management and Stop/Start Driveline: Ten-Speed Automatic, Four-Wheel Drive Horsepower @ RPM: 420 @ 5,600 Torque @ RPM: 460 @ 4,100 Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 15/19/17 Curb Weight: 5,015 lbs Location of Manufacture: Roanoke, Indiana Base Price: $53,200 As Tested Price: $64,955 (Includes $1,595 Destination Charge and $500 discount for the AT4 Premium Package)* Options: Off-Road Performance Package - $4,940 AT4 Premium Package - $3,100 with a $500 discount Technology Package - $1,875 Driver Alert Package II - $745
  11. The Kia Forte could never claim to be the best compact car, but its low price and a long list of equipment made it an interesting alternative choice to the stalwarts of the compact class. This approach has worked well with the Forte becoming one of the brand’s best selling models. Kia wants to change the fortunes of the Forte with third-generation by not fully relying on price and value. I spent a week in the top-line EX Launch Edition to see how it fares. The new Mazda3 is considered by many to be the sexiest compact car on sale. Running a close second is the Forte. Elements of the Stinger are used throughout such as power bulge on the hood, headlights that extend into the fenders, and sculpting along the side. The only place where the design falters is in the rear with a set of triangular pods housing the reversing lights and turn signals. They ruin the elegant and upscale look Kia is trying to go for. The Forte’s interior at first glance may look somewhat plain, with only a set of circular vents and a strip of faux metal trim running across the dash being the interesting bits. But Kia has done its homework in building a high-quality interior. Almost all of the plastics used are soft-touch and feature different textures to make the vehicle look and feel more expensive than the actual price. Clever touches such as dual-zone climate control being standard on all models and a two-tier bin allowing you and a passenger to place their phones also set the Forte apart. The EX features leatherette upholstery, a 10-way power seat for the driver, and heat/ventilation for those sitting up front. I found the seats to be very easy to find a comfortable position, along with providing excellent support for long trips. The back seat is mixed with a decent of legroom, but headroom being somewhat at a premium due to an optional sunroof for those above six-feet. All Fortes come with an 8-inch touchscreen as standard with Kia’s UVO infotainment system. Navigation is only available on the EX if you order the Launch Edition package. The current incarnation of UVO is starting to look somewhat old in terms of the interface. It cannot be beaten for the overall ease of use with large touchpoints, simple menu layout, and physical shortcut buttons underneath the screen. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay integration is standard across the board. Power comes from a 2.0L four-cylinder engine pumping out 147 horsepower and 132 pound-feet of torque. The base FE gets a six-speed manual, while higher trims use a CVT. The powertrain goes about its business surprisingly well around down with the engine providing decent pull and the CVT mimicking an automatic transmission. But this powertrain falters when you need to get up to speed quickly. The engine runs out of steam when going above 60 mph and there is a noticeable drone coming from the CVT. Fuel economy in the 2019 Kia Forte EX is rated at 30 City/40 Highway/34 Combined. My average for the week landed around 33. The Forte really shines when it comes to ride quality. Despite having a slightly stiffer ride compared to the last-generation model, the sedan glides over most bumps with no issue. Road and wind noise were about average for the class, and could easily be drowned out by turning up the volume slightly. Handling is about average for the class with a slight amount of body lean and steering providing decent weight. To sum up, the large effort Kia has put into the 2019 Forte shows. The combination of styling, a long list of features, balance between ride and handling, and a surprising base price make it a real threat in the compact car class. The only item that needs to be addressed is the engine - ten extra horsepower and torque could make the difference. How I would configure a 2019 Kia Forte While the EX Launch Edition does provide some desirable features such as adaptive cruise control, QI wireless charging, and a Harman/Kardon audio system, I would drop down to the mid-level S. At $20,290, you’re getting a lot of equipment such as 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights, forward collision warning with automatic braking, and keyless entry. I would add the $1,200 S Premium Package to get LED headlights, automatic high beams, and a power sunroof. With destination, the price comes to $22,415. Alternatives to the 2019 Kia Forte Hyundai Elantra: Mechanically similar to the Forte, albeit with a face that will scare small kids. Two turbo engine options - one focused on the economy while the other is for sport - might be attractive to some. Honda Civic: Drives slightly better than the Forte and offers more body styles. But lower reliability scores and confounding infotainment systems may cause you to look elsewhere. Chevrolet Cruze: While it lacks a number of features found on the Forte, it does offer a slightly smoother and quieter ride. Plus, dealers are starting to push a lot of cash on the hoods to get them moving. Disclaimer: Kia Provided the Forte, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas Year: 2019 Make: Kia Model: Forte Trim: EX Engine: 2.0L Multi-Port DOHC Inline-Four Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, CVT Horsepower @ RPM: 147 @ 6,200 Torque @ RPM: 132 @ 4,500 Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 30/40/34 Curb Weight: 2,903 lbs Location of Manufacture: Pesqueria, NL, Mexico Base Price: $21,990 As Tested Price: $26,220 (Includes $895.00 Destination Charge) Options: EX Launch Edtion - $3,210.00 Carpeted Floor Mats - $125.00 View full article
  12. The Kia Forte could never claim to be the best compact car, but its low price and a long list of equipment made it an interesting alternative choice to the stalwarts of the compact class. This approach has worked well with the Forte becoming one of the brand’s best selling models. Kia wants to change the fortunes of the Forte with third-generation by not fully relying on price and value. I spent a week in the top-line EX Launch Edition to see how it fares. The new Mazda3 is considered by many to be the sexiest compact car on sale. Running a close second is the Forte. Elements of the Stinger are used throughout such as power bulge on the hood, headlights that extend into the fenders, and sculpting along the side. The only place where the design falters is in the rear with a set of triangular pods housing the reversing lights and turn signals. They ruin the elegant and upscale look Kia is trying to go for. The Forte’s interior at first glance may look somewhat plain, with only a set of circular vents and a strip of faux metal trim running across the dash being the interesting bits. But Kia has done its homework in building a high-quality interior. Almost all of the plastics used are soft-touch and feature different textures to make the vehicle look and feel more expensive than the actual price. Clever touches such as dual-zone climate control being standard on all models and a two-tier bin allowing you and a passenger to place their phones also set the Forte apart. The EX features leatherette upholstery, a 10-way power seat for the driver, and heat/ventilation for those sitting up front. I found the seats to be very easy to find a comfortable position, along with providing excellent support for long trips. The back seat is mixed with a decent of legroom, but headroom being somewhat at a premium due to an optional sunroof for those above six-feet. All Fortes come with an 8-inch touchscreen as standard with Kia’s UVO infotainment system. Navigation is only available on the EX if you order the Launch Edition package. The current incarnation of UVO is starting to look somewhat old in terms of the interface. It cannot be beaten for the overall ease of use with large touchpoints, simple menu layout, and physical shortcut buttons underneath the screen. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay integration is standard across the board. Power comes from a 2.0L four-cylinder engine pumping out 147 horsepower and 132 pound-feet of torque. The base FE gets a six-speed manual, while higher trims use a CVT. The powertrain goes about its business surprisingly well around down with the engine providing decent pull and the CVT mimicking an automatic transmission. But this powertrain falters when you need to get up to speed quickly. The engine runs out of steam when going above 60 mph and there is a noticeable drone coming from the CVT. Fuel economy in the 2019 Kia Forte EX is rated at 30 City/40 Highway/34 Combined. My average for the week landed around 33. The Forte really shines when it comes to ride quality. Despite having a slightly stiffer ride compared to the last-generation model, the sedan glides over most bumps with no issue. Road and wind noise were about average for the class, and could easily be drowned out by turning up the volume slightly. Handling is about average for the class with a slight amount of body lean and steering providing decent weight. To sum up, the large effort Kia has put into the 2019 Forte shows. The combination of styling, a long list of features, balance between ride and handling, and a surprising base price make it a real threat in the compact car class. The only item that needs to be addressed is the engine - ten extra horsepower and torque could make the difference. How I would configure a 2019 Kia Forte While the EX Launch Edition does provide some desirable features such as adaptive cruise control, QI wireless charging, and a Harman/Kardon audio system, I would drop down to the mid-level S. At $20,290, you’re getting a lot of equipment such as 17-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights, forward collision warning with automatic braking, and keyless entry. I would add the $1,200 S Premium Package to get LED headlights, automatic high beams, and a power sunroof. With destination, the price comes to $22,415. Alternatives to the 2019 Kia Forte Hyundai Elantra: Mechanically similar to the Forte, albeit with a face that will scare small kids. Two turbo engine options - one focused on the economy while the other is for sport - might be attractive to some. Honda Civic: Drives slightly better than the Forte and offers more body styles. But lower reliability scores and confounding infotainment systems may cause you to look elsewhere. Chevrolet Cruze: While it lacks a number of features found on the Forte, it does offer a slightly smoother and quieter ride. Plus, dealers are starting to push a lot of cash on the hoods to get them moving. Disclaimer: Kia Provided the Forte, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas Year: 2019 Make: Kia Model: Forte Trim: EX Engine: 2.0L Multi-Port DOHC Inline-Four Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, CVT Horsepower @ RPM: 147 @ 6,200 Torque @ RPM: 132 @ 4,500 Fuel Economy: City/Highway/Combined - 30/40/34 Curb Weight: 2,903 lbs Location of Manufacture: Pesqueria, NL, Mexico Base Price: $21,990 As Tested Price: $26,220 (Includes $895.00 Destination Charge) Options: EX Launch Edtion - $3,210.00 Carpeted Floor Mats - $125.00
  13. The Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra really don't have many traits that set them apart, aside from different front-end styling. But GMC is hoping the new 2019 Sierra, making its debut today, will be able to distinguish itself from its Chevrolet brethren. To do this, GMC has two new features that are exclusive to the Sierra. First is the CarbonPro bed. Optional on the Denali, the bed is comprised of lightweight carbon fiber composite panels for the inner panels and floor. Not only does it promise "best-in-class dent, scratch and corrosion resistance", it also drop 62 pounds out of the Sierra's curb weight. Second is the MultiPro Tailgate that offers "six unique functions and positions " such as standing workstation. The Sierra's exterior takes a bold approach with a larger front grille and C-Shaped headlights. Denali models appear to have a lot of chrome trim. 22-inch wheels are standard equipment on the Denali and SLT. We don't know much about the exteriors for lesser Sierra models as GMC is focusing on the Denali and SLT models for the time being. Like the Silverado, GMC has focused on cutting weight in the 2019 Sierra - up to 360 pounds depending on the configuration. Aluminum panels are in use for the doors, hood, and tailgate. Don't expect any drastic differences between the Sierra's and Silverado's interior aside from some additional chrome trim. The Sierra does come with some interesting tech including a full-color heads-up display, a trailering smartphone app that allows a driver to check the lights, trailer tire pressures, and perform electrical diagnostics; and hitch guidance system to make hooking up a trailer easier. Engines will include the 5.3L and 6.2L V8s, and the all-new 3.0L turbodiesel inline-six. We'll hopefully have more details and pictures as GMC will be holding an event later tonight in Detroit. The 2019 Sierra arrives at dealers this fall. Source: GMC Press Release is on Page 2 GMC Introduces the Next Generation 2019 Sierra Commanding design, segment-leading technologies redefine premium truck DETROIT — GMC is taking its most popular pickup truck to the next level with the completely redesigned 2019 Sierra Denali and SLT. Distinguished by bold design and segment-leading technologies, the next generation Sierra Denali once again redefines the premium pickup, while advancing Denali’s legacy as the pinnacle of GMC design, capability and refinement. “GMC ignited the premium truck segment 17 years ago with the original launch of the Sierra Denali,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global GMC. “The next generation 2019 Sierra Denali establishes a new benchmark in capability and refinement. It exemplifies precision in every detail.” Powerful proportions and distinctive Denali design help define the Sierra’s unmistakable exterior, while the driver-focused cabin strengthens the brand’s reputation for refinement with premium materials, improved interior space and innovative storage solutions. The 2019 Sierra Denali affirms its position as the most premium Sierra ever with segment-leading technologies and exclusive features, including: GMC Exclusive, Industry-first MultiPro Tailgate is the most innovative pickup tailgate ever, with six unique functions and positions offering enhanced second-tier loading and load-stop solutions, a standing workstation and easier access to items in the box. GMC Exclusive, Industry-first Carbon Fiber Pickup Box, the CarbonPro, was developed to increase durability, efficiency and functionality while offering best-in-class dent, scratch and corrosion resistance, making it the most durable pickup box in the segment. All-new ProGrade Trailering System with Trailering App offers a connected comprehensive suite of trailering technology that brings more confidence to the towing experience than ever before. Segment-first Multi-Color Head-Up Display projects key, customizable vehicle data on the windshield in a 3x7-inch display to help drivers keep their eyes on the road. Segment-first Rear Camera Mirror offers an optimized view via an available dual-function interior mirror that expands vision to overcome common visual obstructions like occupants or cargo. This next generation system features a higher resolution camera and display and the ability to tilt or zoom the view. The redesigned Sierra Denali offers a full suite of available advanced safety features, along with exclusive chassis technologies such as Adaptive Ride Control. “The heritage of the GMC brand is rooted in full-size trucks, of which the Sierra is our cornerstone, with our SLT and Denali models contributing 87 percent of our total crew cab sales,” Aldred said. “The next generation Sierra caters to these unique customers who demand a premium, innovative truck that supports their professional and personal passions.” A commanding presence The 2019 Sierra Denali debuts a profound new GMC design. A taller, more confident stance gives Sierra Denali powerful proportions complemented by hallmark details such as a chrome grille with a sharp, precise dimensional pattern that epitomizes the truck’s attention to detail. “The next generation Sierra Denali has a deliberate, commanding presence,” said Matt Noone, director of design, GMC Exteriors. “Its unmistakable design embodies the essence of GMC, while advancing the brand’s core styling elements — rooted in inherent capability — with a new expression of its signature cues.” Sierra shows refinement and strength through a larger, more-dominant upright grille, a taller hood, and a bolder, more pronounced take on GMC’s C-shaped lighting signature. Advanced lighting technology distinguishes the Sierra Denali from every other truck on the road. GMC’s front lighting signature is conveyed through a prominent “light blade” that delivers uniform LED illumination for the daytime running lamps. LEDs are also used for the headlamps, taillamps, fog lamps and other illuminative elements, with lenses constructed from durable material with an almost crystalline quality. The truck is larger than the previous truck in virtually every dimension, and the larger grille and dramatic lighting accentuate its broad-shouldered stance. The wheels are pushed closer to the corners and wear larger diameter tires. Denali features available 22-inch Ultra Bright aluminum wheels; the SLT model offers its own unique 22-inch dark aluminum wheels finished with chrome accents. New, more prominent badging includes a bold DENALI nameplate on the tailgate —expressed in a new block-style typeface that echoes the truck’s strong proportions — below the signature GMC identification. An elevated interior refined The Sierra Denali’s new interior builds on the refinement and sophistication that have become synonymous with Denali, topping the segment with best-in-class front head- and legroom (maximum), providing a more spacious, driver-centric environment finished with premium materials. Putting the driver at the center of experience starts with a higher seating position that offers a confident view behind the wheel. The optimized ergonomics emphasize easy, intuitive interaction with the vehicle’s technologies, such as the all-new Trailering App and segment-first Head-Up Display. Denali-exclusive materials — including premium leather-appointed seating, authentic open-pore wood trim and dark-finish aluminum decor — help raise the interior to a new level of refinement. The exclusive leather appointments have a distinctive, large-pebbled grain with a contrasting stitch pattern that is both premium in appearance and touch without sacrificing durability, and the wood trim features an open-pore texture evocative of hand-planed furniture. When it comes to the space and storage vital to truck customers, the 2019 Sierra’s crew cab has nearly 3 inches of additional rear-seat legroom compared to the current model. The outboard rear seat backs open to reveal rectangular storage spaces large enough for storing tablets or laptops, tie-down cords, umbrellas or other important accessories. Groundbreaking cargo box capability and materials The next generation 2019 Sierra debuts a GMC exclusive, industry-first MultiPro Tailgate that is the segment’s most innovative tailgate ever. Standard on SLT and Denali, the MultiPro Tailgate features six unique functions and positions, offering enhanced second-tier loading and load-stop solutions, a standing workstation mode and easier access to items in the box. The MultiPro Tailgate also incorporates a step entry and egress mode that, when paired with the assist handle, offers both step and seated functionality, with a maximum weight capacity of 375 pounds (170 kg). Ease of use is enhanced with two buttons on the tailgate handle that allow convenient inner gate release. This multifunctional tailgate offers proven strength and durability, having undergone more testing and validation than any tailgate in GM’s history. Sierra is the first and only truck to offer the MultiPro Tailgate, providing premium truck customers the ultimate flexibility. MultiPro Tailgate will be standard on Denali and SLT. The cargo boxes also offer best-in-class cargo volume — 63 cubic feet (1,784 liters) on the short box, as well as additional tie-downs and a new, available 110-volt power outlet. The bed continues to be made of roll-formed, high-strength steel, yet a revised alloy offers 50 percent more strength than the current model. The 2019 Sierra Denali will offer, later in the model year, an available GMC exclusive and industry-first carbon fiber box — the CarbonPro — developed to increase durability, efficiency and functionality of the truck. It replaces the standard steel inner panels and floor with a lightweight, purpose-designed carbon fiber composite that offers best-in-class dent, scratch and corrosion resistance, making it the most durable pickup box in the segment. “In 116 years of making GMC pickup trucks, our industry-first carbon fiber box is the toughest and most durable pickup box we have ever made,” Aldred said. The new CarbonPro box is 62 pounds (28 kg) lighter than the steel version, and is one example of GMC’s strategic use of materials in engineering the Sierra. The strategy also incorporates aluminum for the doors, hood and tailgate, while relying on steel for the fenders, roof and standard cargo box to shave up to 360 pounds (163 kg) from Sierra compared today’s model. ProGrade Trailering System with Trailering App The 2019 Sierra offers a more confident towing experience thanks to GMC’s new ProGrade Trailering System, standard on Denali and SLT. The trailering system includes an all-new Trailering App featuring a Pre-Departure checklist, Maintenance Reminders, Trailer Light Test, Trailer Electrical Diagnostics and Trailer Tire Pressure and Temperature Monitoring. Many of the Trailering App’s functions, including the lighting test and pre-departure checklist, are also available with the MyGMC app on compatible Android and iOS smartphones, a feature that offers great convenience when outside the truck or trailer. The next generation Sierra also offers Hitch Guidance with Hitch View and Auto Electric Park Brake to help with perfect positioning when hitching. The available side view cameras and a trailer-mounted HD camera provide additional assistance when driving down the road or in reverse. With exclusive Trailer Theft Detection, owners can receive text and mobile alerts from OnStar when the trailer has been detached from the truck without permission. Purposeful technologies Seamless, driver-focused technology has long been a Denali standard, and the 2019 Sierra Denali establishes a new benchmark by incorporating purposeful technologies. These technologies work together to increase functionality and enhance comfort and convenience. Highlights include: Segment-first Multi-color 3x7 Head-Up Display: The 2019 Sierra is the first full-size truck to offer this technology, which projects key vehicle information on the windshield within the driver’s line of sight. Advanced GMC infotainment: This new, dynamic platform offers a smartphone-like experience with an intuitive interface, faster response and improved voice recognition. Sierra Denali’s standard 8-inch diagonal system includes navigation. Segment-first Rear Camera Mirror: This available dual-function interior mirror offers an optimized camera view that can help the driver’s view around potential vision obstructions such as occupants or cargo, while also offering a greater field of vision. This next gen system features a higher resolution camera, a higher resolution display and the ability to tilt or zoom the view. A conventional mirror view is also available. Surround Vision: Offering a bird’s-eye view of the truck, this available feature displays an overhead image on the infotainment screen, helping the driver detect potential obstacles when backing up, including when trailering. Full suite of advanced safety features: The 2019 Sierra Denali offers a full range of available advanced safety features, including Side Blind Zone Alert, Pedestrian Detection and Low Speed Forward Automatic Braking. Sierra performance New versions of the proven 6.2L and 5.3L V-8 engines will be joined by an all-new 3.0L inline-six turbo-diesel engine, expanding the powertrain lineup for the 2019 Sierra. The 5.3L and 6.2L engines feature stop/start technology and new Dynamic Fuel Management that enables the engine to operate on one to eight cylinders, depending on demand, to optimize power and efficiency. The new diesel builds on GMC’s expertise with Duramax turbo-diesels offered in Sierra HD and Canyon models. The available 6.2L and 3.0L engines are paired with a 10-speed automatic transmission. Sierra Denali features an exclusive Adaptive Ride Control suspension system designed to provide premium driving refinement with exceptional responsiveness. It employs sophisticated sensors to monitor road conditions and chassis responses in real time, enabling adjustments to active dampers every 2 milliseconds. Coming this fall The 2019 GMC Sierra Denali and SLT go on sale this fall. Additional details will be released closer to the start of production. View full article
  14. Quarterly: Ford Motor Company - Not reported General Motors Co. - Not Reported Tesla - Not Reported FCA has announced that beginning October 2019, they will be reporting sales quarterly Monthly: Audi of America - Down 21% for the month, Down 8.7% for the year BMW of North America - Down 2.9% for the month, Down 2.1% for the year FCA US LLC - Down 6% for the month, Down 4% for the year Genesis Motor America - Honda Motor Co. - Up 0.1% for the month, Up 1.5% for the year Hyundai Motor America - Up 0.7% for the month, Up 1.7% for the year Jaguar Land Rover North America - Kia Motors America - Up 1.6% for the month, Up 5.9% for the year Mazda North American Operations - Down 14.5% for the month, Down 15.4% for the year Mercedes-Benz USA - Down 14.6% for the month, Down 10.7% for the year Mitsubishi Motors North America - Down 12.9% for the month, Up 12% for the year Nissan Group - Up 9.0% for the month, Down 8.4% for the year Porsche Cars North America Inc. - Subaru of America, Inc. - Up 7.7% for the month, Up 5.5% for the year Toyota Motor North America - Down 4.4% for the month, Down 4.8% for the year Volkswagen of America - Up 8.7% for the month, Up 3.9% for the year Volvo Cars of North America, LLC - Up 0.4% for the month, Up 7.1% for the year Brands (Quarterly): Buick - Not Reported Cadillac - Not Reported Chevrolet - Not Reported GMC - Not Reported Ford - Not Reported Lincoln - Not Reported Tesla - Not Reported Brands (Monthly): Acura - Down 1.7% - 11,687 MTD / 48,072 YTD Alfa Romeo - Down 14% - 1,584 MTD / 5,870 YTD Audi - Down 21% 15,024 MTD / 63,139 YTD BMW - Up 1.4% - 23,816 MTD / 97,704 YTD Chrysler - Down 37% - 9,987 MTD / 40,578 YTD Dodge - Down 24% - 31,262 MTD / 141,779 YTD Fiat - Down 34% - 931 MTD / 3,145 YTD Genesis - Honda - Up 0.2% - 114,088 MTD / 447,490 YTD Hyundai - Up 0.7% - 55,420 MTD / 203,005 YTD Infiniti - Down 5.2% - 8,491 MTD / 42,806 YTD Jaguar - Jeep - Down 8% - 76,325 MTD / 289,129 YTD Kia - Up 1.6% - 51,385 MTD / 187,981 YTD Land Rover - Lexus - Down 1.3 - 21,360 MTD / 88,151 YTD Mazda - Down 14.5% - 19,702 MTD / 90,535 YTD Mercedes-Benz - Down 15.7% 22,949 MTD / 94,120 YTD Mercedes-Benz Vans - Down 4.7% - 2,682 MTD / 10,158 YTD MINI - Down 29.8% - 2,621 MTD / 11,526 YTD Mitsubishi - Down 12.9% - 6963 MTD / 49,030 YTD Nissan - Up 10.7% - 87,207 MTD / 418,743 YTD Porsche - Ram Trucks - Up 25% - 53,811 MTD / 190,824 YTD Smart - Down 8.6% - 85 MTD / 316 YTD Subaru - Up 7.7% - 57,288 MTD / 214,042 YTD Toyota - Down 4.8% - 162,506 MTD / 639,431 YTD Volkswagen - Up 8.7% - 31,309 MTD / 117,181 YTD Volvo - Up 0.4% - 8,367 MTD / 30,425 YTD View full article
  15. Mercedes-Benz USA (MBUSA) today reported April sales of 22,949 Mercedes- Benz models. Mercedes-Benz Vans reported April sales of 2,682 units and smart reported 85, bringing MBUSA to a grand total of 25,716 vehicles for the month. On a year-to-date basis, MBUSA recorded sales of 94,120, adding 10,158 units for Vans and 316 vehicles for smart, bringing the year-to-date sales volume to 104,594. "Sales in April were again impacted by model changes and availability constraints of our high-volume SUV and compact model lines," said Dietmar Exler, president and CEO of MBUSA. "We expect increased vehicle availability in the coming months." Mercedes-Benz sales leaders in April included the GLC, C-Class and E-Class model lines. The GLC lead totals with 5,378 vehicles followed by C-Class sales of 4,054. The E-Class rounded out the top three with 3,372. April sales of Mercedes-AMG high-performance models totaled 2,796 units (+3.3%) with 12,480 vehicles sold year-to-date (+20.9%). Separately, Mercedes-Benz Certified Pre-Owned (MBCPO) models recorded sales of 10,311 vehicles in April, an increase of 10.9% versus last year. On a year-to-date basis, MBCPO sold 40,676 vehicles, an increase of 4.2% from the previous year. Mercedes-Benz Passenger Vehicles Apr-19 Apr-18 Monthly % YTD 2019 YTD 2018 Yearly % A-CLASS 804 _ _ 1,694 _ _ B-CLASS 1 7 -85.7% 4 129 -96.9% CLA 986 1,910 -48.4% 6,196 7,365 -15.9% C-CLASS 4,054 5,148 -21.3% 19,056 18,498 3.0% E-CLASS/CLS 3,372 3,945 -14.5% 13,766 16,380 -16.0% S-CLASS 958 1,535 -37.6% 4,109 6,100 -32.6% SLC 303 197 53.8% 812 783 3.7% SL 193 202 -4.5% 629 842 -25.3% AMG GT 340 178 91.0% 984 559 76.0% GLA 1,770 2,011 -12.0% 6,491 8,535 -23.9% GLC 5,378 5,853 -8.1% 20,744 22,113 -6.2% GLE 2,566 4,110 -37.6% 9,101 15,766 -42.3% GLS 1,678 1,794 -6.5% 7,695 7,290 5.6% G-CLASS 546 317 72.2% 2,839 1,321 114.9% TOTAL 22,949 27,207 -15.7% 94,120 105,681 -10.9% Vans 2,682 2,815 -4.7% 10,158 11,001 -7.7% smart 85 93 -8.6% 316 414 -23.7% MBUSA Combined Total Apr-19 Apr-18 Monthly % YTD 2019 YTD 2018 Yearly % GRAND TOTAL 25,716 30,115 -14.6% 104,594 117,096 -10.7% 1 Mercedes-Benz, Freightliner Sprinter and Metris Vans are sold and marketed in the U.S. by Mercedes-Benz USA and Daimler Vans USA, respectively.
  16. Porsche Reports April U.S. Retail Sales First four months up 2.7 percent ahead of new Macan, 911, electric TaycanAtlanta, Georgia. Porsche Cars North America, Inc. (PCNA), importer and distributor of the Porsche 911, 718 Boxster and Cayman, Panamera, Cayenne, and Macan model lines, today announced April retail sales of 5,018 vehicles. The total was an increase of 5.0 percent from March but down 9.9 percent from a record April 2018. The primary reason for the year-over-year decline was the transition to the new Macan, the best-selling Porsche model that is due in U.S. dealerships this month. U.S. retail sales in the first four months were 2.7 percent ahead of the same period in 2018, which itself was the seventh record retail year in a row for PCNA. “We are already feeling the excitement for the refreshed Macan and later this year for the eighth generation of the iconic Porsche 911,” said Klaus Zellmer, President and CEO of PCNA. “In September we will unveil the first all-electric Porsche, the Taycan, so all in all we have a thrilling year to look forward to along with our 191 U.S. dealer partners.” April results were driven by strong demand for the new Cayenne, with a notable 86.1 percent increase compared to April 2018. The mid-engine 718 Boxster and 718 Cayman together were up 1.3 percent from a year ago. Porsche Approved Certified Pre-Owned (CPO) sales in the U.S. totaled 1,975 vehicles in April, up 9.4 percent year-over-year. Model April Sales Year-to-Date 2019 2018 2019 2018 ALL 911 655 804 3,549 3,315 ALL 718 612 604 1,277 1,956 ALL PANAMERA 992 1,026 2,690 2,942 ALL CAYENNE 1,645 884 7,204 4,171 ALL MACAN 1,114 2,252 5,322 7,140 GRAND TOTALS 5,018 5,570 20,042 19,524
  17. KIA MOTORS AMERICA ANNOUNCES APRIL SALES Year-to-Date Sales Up 5.9-Percent IRVINE, Calif., May 1, 2019 – Kia Motors America today announced April sales of 51,385 vehicles. Sales were led by Soul which posted an 18-percent increase over the same period last year. Telluride sales remained strong with 5,570 units sold during the model’s second full month of availability. “Telluride is Kia’s fastest turning vehicle in America right now and its popularity is driving new customers into Kia showrooms on a daily basis,” said Bill Peffer, vice president, sales operations, Kia Motors America. “When you add the new 2020 Soul launch campaign which is airing now and Kia’s Summer Sales Program which is set to kick off, we’re confident Kia’s momentum will continue to grow as we move swiftly into the summer sales season.” About Kia Motors America Headquartered in Irvine, California, Kia Motors America continues to top quality surveys and is recognized as one of the 100 Best Global Brands and 50 Best Global Green Brands by Interbrand. Kia serves as the "Official Automotive Partner" of the NBA and offers a complete range of vehicles sold through a network of nearly 800 dealers in the U.S., including cars and SUVs proudly assembled in West Point, Georgia.* For media information, including photography, visit www.kiamedia.com. To receive custom email notifications for press releases the moment they are published, subscribe at www.kiamedia.com/us/en/newsalert. *The Telluride, Sorento and Optima (excluding Hybrid and Plug-In Hybrid) are assembled in the United States from U.S. and globally sourced parts. MONTH OF APRIL YEAR-TO-DATE Model 2019 2018 2019 2018 Rio 2,082 1,964 7,926 6,989 Forte 7,336 9,199 28,710 32,930 Optima 8,411 8,276 31,079 27,886 Cadenza 117 510 528 2,689 Stinger 939 1,378 4,166 5,298 K900 43 40 145 131 Soul 10,431 8,825 35,984 30,243 Niro 1,839 2,340 7,185 8,675 Sportage 6,077 7,653 25,275 27,112 Sorento 7,473 8,915 31,092 30,301 Telluride 5,570 N/A 10,965 N/A Sedona 1,067 1,485 4,926 5,276 Total 51,385 50,585 187,981 177,530
  18. Quarterly: Ford Motor Company - Not reported General Motors Co. - Not Reported Tesla - Not Reported FCA has announced that beginning October 2019, they will be reporting sales quarterly Monthly: Audi of America - Down 21% for the month, Down 8.7% for the year BMW of North America - Down 2.9% for the month, Down 2.1% for the year FCA US LLC - Down 6% for the month, Down 4% for the year Genesis Motor America - Honda Motor Co. - Up 0.1% for the month, Up 1.5% for the year Hyundai Motor America - Up 0.7% for the month, Up 1.7% for the year Jaguar Land Rover North America - Kia Motors America - Up 1.6% for the month, Up 5.9% for the year Mazda North American Operations - Down 14.5% for the month, Down 15.4% for the year Mercedes-Benz USA - Down 14.6% for the month, Down 10.7% for the year Mitsubishi Motors North America - Down 12.9% for the month, Up 12% for the year Nissan Group - Up 9.0% for the month, Down 8.4% for the year Porsche Cars North America Inc. - Subaru of America, Inc. - Up 7.7% for the month, Up 5.5% for the year Toyota Motor North America - Down 4.4% for the month, Down 4.8% for the year Volkswagen of America - Up 8.7% for the month, Up 3.9% for the year Volvo Cars of North America, LLC - Up 0.4% for the month, Up 7.1% for the year Brands (Quarterly): Buick - Not Reported Cadillac - Not Reported Chevrolet - Not Reported GMC - Not Reported Ford - Not Reported Lincoln - Not Reported Tesla - Not Reported Brands (Monthly): Acura - Down 1.7% - 11,687 MTD / 48,072 YTD Alfa Romeo - Down 14% - 1,584 MTD / 5,870 YTD Audi - Down 21% 15,024 MTD / 63,139 YTD BMW - Up 1.4% - 23,816 MTD / 97,704 YTD Chrysler - Down 37% - 9,987 MTD / 40,578 YTD Dodge - Down 24% - 31,262 MTD / 141,779 YTD Fiat - Down 34% - 931 MTD / 3,145 YTD Genesis - Honda - Up 0.2% - 114,088 MTD / 447,490 YTD Hyundai - Up 0.7% - 55,420 MTD / 203,005 YTD Infiniti - Down 5.2% - 8,491 MTD / 42,806 YTD Jaguar - Jeep - Down 8% - 76,325 MTD / 289,129 YTD Kia - Up 1.6% - 51,385 MTD / 187,981 YTD Land Rover - Lexus - Down 1.3 - 21,360 MTD / 88,151 YTD Mazda - Down 14.5% - 19,702 MTD / 90,535 YTD Mercedes-Benz - Down 15.7% 22,949 MTD / 94,120 YTD Mercedes-Benz Vans - Down 4.7% - 2,682 MTD / 10,158 YTD MINI - Down 29.8% - 2,621 MTD / 11,526 YTD Mitsubishi - Down 12.9% - 6963 MTD / 49,030 YTD Nissan - Up 10.7% - 87,207 MTD / 418,743 YTD Porsche - Ram Trucks - Up 25% - 53,811 MTD / 190,824 YTD Smart - Down 8.6% - 85 MTD / 316 YTD Subaru - Up 7.7% - 57,288 MTD / 214,042 YTD Toyota - Down 4.8% - 162,506 MTD / 639,431 YTD Volkswagen - Up 8.7% - 31,309 MTD / 117,181 YTD Volvo - Up 0.4% - 8,367 MTD / 30,425 YTD
  19. BMW of North America Reports April 2019 U.S. Sales. Overall BMW Brand Sales Increase 1.4% BMW X7 Sports Activity Vehicle and All-New BMW 3 Series Sedan Continue to Drive Growth in the U.S. Woodcliff Lake, NJ – May 1, 2019… Sales of BMW brand vehicles increased 1.4 percent in April 2019 for a total of 23,816 over the 23,482 vehicles sold in April 2018. BMW Sports Activity Vehicles continue to drive sales growth in the U.S., led by the BMW X3, BMW X5 and the BMW X7, which sold 2,291 units in its second full month of availability. The all-new BMW 3 Series sedan also performed particularly well, with an increase of 2.6 percent over April 2018, while the BMW 5 Series sedan remains the leader in its segment. “We’ve said before that our focus for 2019 would be profitability and growth -- and we’re right where we want to be,” said Bernhard Kuhnt, president and CEO, BMW of North America. “Demand for the BMW X7 only continues to grow, and the new 3 Series, with its suite of new technology features and exceptional driving dynamics has drawn rave reviews from our dealers, the media and most importantly, our customers.” Vehicle Sales BMW of North America, LLC, April 2019 Apr. 2019 Apr.2018 % YTD Apr. 2019 YTD Apr. 2018 % i3 331 503 -34.2% 1,295 2,500 -48.2% i8 87 57 53.0% 248 175 41.7% 2 Series 581 879 -33.9% 2,643 3,647 -27.5% 3 Series 3,642 3,550 2.6% 11,867 17,201 -31.0% 4 Series 1,214 2,473 -50.9% 8,616 9,412 -8.5% 5 Series 2,857 3,056 -6.5% 13,202 13,094 0.8% 6 Series 96 398 -75.9% 721 1,428 -49.5% 7 Series 567 546 3.8% 2,860 2,346 21.9% 8 Series 275 0 0.0% 876 0 0.0% Z4 271 0 0.0% 472 2 23500.0% X1 1,618 2,501 -35.3% 7,474 10,752 -30.5% X2 822 1,069 -23.1% 3,773 2,016 87.2% BMW passenger cars 12,361 15,032 -17.8% 54,047 62,573 -13.6% X3 4,321 3,865 11.8% 18,889 14,647 29.0% X4 638 193 230.6% 2,074 1,610 28.8% X5 3,781 3,800 -0.5% 15,693 15,876 -1.2% X6 424 592 -28.4% 2,524 2,611 -3.3% X7 2,291 0 0.0% 4,477 0 0.0% BMW light trucks 11,455 8,450 35.6% 43,657 34,744 25.7% BMW brand 23,816 23,482 1.4% 97,704 97,317 0.4% Cooper /S Hardtop 2 Door 743 634 17.2% 2,822 2,973 -5.1% Cooper /S Hardtop 4 Door 460 394 16.8% 2,127 1,779 19.6% Cooper /S Convertible 338 972 -65.2% 1,462 1,920 -23.9% Cooper /S Clubman 200 350 -42.9% 1,039 1,297 -19.9% Countryman 880 1,381 -36.3% 4,076 6,295 -35.3% MINI brand 2,621 3,731 -29.8% 11,526 14,264 -19.2% TOTAL BMW of North America, LLC 26,437 27,213 -2.9% 109,230 111,581 -2.1%
  20. Volvo Car USA, LLC, (VCUSA) reported U.S. sales of 8,367 vehicles for the month of April, an increase of 0.4 percent from the same period last year. Year-to-date, VCUSA has sold 30,425 vehicles, an increase of 7 percent from the previous year. April 2019 was the best April sales performance since April 2007. The XC90 was the top seller for April, up 27 percent over the prior year, with 2,700 sales recorded. The new XC40 had another record-breaking month, selling 1,824 compact SUVs. “Led this month by the XC90, our award-winning SUV line was up 10 percent for the month,” said Anders Gustafsson, President and CEO, Volvo Car USA. “Together, the XC90, XC60 and XC40 have led to a 14 percent increase in SUV sales year-over-year.” Models April 2019 April 2018 % Year To Date 2019 Year To Date 2018 % S60 1,232 575 114.3 % 5,041 2,604 93.6 % S60 CC 0 8 - - 122 - S90 258 583 -55.7 % 1,051 2,408 -56.4 % V60 27 183 -85.2 % 139 593 -76.6 % V60 CC 0 626 - 38 1,226 -96.9 % V90 40 30 33.3 % 148 82 80.5 % V90 CC 35 150 -76.7 % 361 702 -48.6 % XC40 1,824 1,404 29.9 % 5,401 2,483 117.5 % XC60 0 16 - - 204 - XC60 II 2,251 2,476 -9.1 % 8,887 8,321 6.8 % XC90 2,700 2,282 18.3 % 9,359 9,671 -3.2 % Total 8,367 8,333 0.4 % 30,425 28,416 7.1 %
  21. Hyundai Motor America Reports April 2019 Sales Hyundai Total Sales Up 1%; Retail Sales Up 2% Elantra, Santa Fe Family, Veloster and Kona Total Sales Increase Year Over Year FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif., May 1, 2019 – Hyundai Motor America reported April sales of 55,420 units, a 1% increase in comparison with April 2018 and the ninth straight month of increasing total sales. Retail sales in April grew by 2% backed by retail increases for Elantra (up 8%), Tucson (up 33%), Santa Fe (up 23%) and Kona (up 40%). Sales Summary Apr-19 Apr-18 2019 YTD 2018 YTD Hyundai 55,420 55,035 203,005 199,550 April Highlights April was a solid month for Hyundai with total sales increasing for a variety of products across the lineup. Total SUVs sales equaled 24,601 units, 44% of the total mix, with Kona, the North American Utility Vehicle of the Year up 55% and combined Santa Fe and Santa Fe XL sales up 14%. On the car front, Elantra total sales grew by 18% and Veloster increased by 68%. “Our focus on retail deliveries and working closely with our dealer partners in providing an exceptional shopping and buyer experience resulted in the third straight month of growing retail sales for Hyundai,” said John Cook, director, Sales Operations, Hyundai Motor America. “April was also an important month for brand lift as we executed two exciting new vehicle introductions at the New York International Auto Show, resulting in Hyundai being the second most talked about brand at the show. Despite challenging market conditions and slowing industry sales, we are cautiously optimistic as we enter May and typically strong Memorial Day holiday weekend sales.” April Product and Corporate Activities Hyundai Venue Global Introduction: Hyundai’s New York International Auto Show included the successful world debut of the all-new entry SUV Venue. Venue is packed with a host of premium driver safety and convenience technologies and is the perfect fit for those seeking a seamless combination of style and versatility, while slotting in as the most affordable Hyundai SUV in the lineup. Venue will arrive in U.S. showrooms in the fourth quarter of this year. 2020 Sonata North American Introduction: The dramatically redesigned 2020 Sonata made its North American debut at the New York International Auto Show and showed off its Sensuous Sportiness design philosophy, an all-new powertrain and segment-first technology, like the Hyundai Digital Key. Production of the 2020 Sonata starts in September at Hyundai Motor Manufacturing Alabama and retail sales begin in October. Santa Fe Earns Wards Best Interior Distinction: The 2019 Santa Fe was named to the Wards 10 Best Interiors list and caught the publication’s attention for “its high-quality materials, attention to detail and overall value.” Nexo Fuel Cell Earth Day: To celebrate Earth Day, Hyundai announced that its NEXO fuel cell SUV and the Tucson fuel cell SUV, together have accumulated more than 5 million miles on U.S. roads, all while emitting only clean water vapor. This cumulative distance is the equivalent of circumnavigating the Earth’s surface more than 300 times at the equator. Model Sales Vehicle Apr-19 Apr-18 2019 YTD 2018 YTD Accent 2,834 2,816 9,615 10,234 Elantra 16,586 14,044 52,698 61,108 Ioniq 1,211 1,789 4,521 5,587 Kona 5,154 3,315 23,551 5,874 Nexo 19 15* 79 17* Santa Fe 10,746 9,400 39,429 37,952 Sonata 8,634 9,616 30,154 33,441 Tucson 8,682 12,888 37,513 40,768 Veloster 1,554 924 5,445 3,964
  22. Nissan Group reports April 2019 U.S. sales April 2019 April 2018 % chg Nissan Group Total sales (units) 95,698 87,764 +9.0 Nissan Division sales 87,207 78,804 +10.7 INFINITI sales* 8,491 8,960 -5.2 NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Nissan Group announced total U.S. sales for April 2019 of 95,698 units, an increase of 9 percent compared to the prior year. Nissan highlights: Nissan Altima sales grew 59 percent in April to 16,531 units. Pathfinder SUV sales increased 72 percent to 4,713 units. NV commercial van sales were up 22 percent year-on-year. Nissan Versa sales were up 12 percent in April. The all-new 2020 Versa sedan was revealed in April and will go on sale in summer 2019. *INFINITI sales total included for reference. For more information on INFINITI's April sales performance, please visit INFINITINews.com. NOTE: To ensure consistency in global sales reporting, Nissan North America calculates monthly variances on a straight-percentage basis, unadjusted for the number of selling days. April 2019 had 25 selling days, while April 2018 had 24 selling days. NISSAN DIVISION APR APR Monthly CYTD CYTD CYTD 2019 2018 % chg 2019 2018 % chg Nissan Division Total 87,207 78,804 10.7 418,743 453,920 -7.7 Versa 6,710 5,998 11.9 31,702 31,363 1.1 Sentra 13,051 16,999 -23.2 69,844 77,001 -9.3 Altima 16,531 10,400 59.0 68,011 73,806 -7.9 Maxima 2,009 2,100 -4.3 12,563 15,854 -20.8 LEAF 951 1,171 -18.8 3,636 3,716 -2.2 Juke 1 83 -98.8 10 539 -98.1 370Z 177 260 -31.9 824 1,243 -33.7 GT-R 33 35 -5.7 126 170 -25.9 Total Car 39,463 37,046 6.5 186,716 203,692 -8.3 Kicks 3,503 0 n/a 16,022 0 n/a Frontier 4,258 5,082 -16.2 24,479 27,907 -12.3 Titan 2,489 2,670 -6.8 12,172 15,394 -20.9 Pathfinder 4,713 2,741 71.9 22,067 20,847 5.9 Armada 1,917 1,713 11.9 11,718 10,795 8.6 Rogue 24,159 23,331 3.5 117,973 139,785 -15.6 Murano 3,476 3,391 2.5 15,205 24,113 -36.9 Quest 0 0 n/a 0 2 -100.0 NV 1,494 1,225 22.0 6,001 4,993 20.2 NV200 1,735 1,605 8.1 6,390 6,392 0.0 Total Truck 47,744 41,758 14.3 232,027 250,228 -7.3 North American produced 60,573 -100.0 341,097 -100.0 Car 36,668 -100.0 201,740 -100.0 Truck 23,905 -100.0 139,357 -100.0 Import 18,231 -100.0 112,823 -100.0 Car 378 -100.0 1,952 -100.0 Truck 17,853 -100.0 110,871 -100.0 INFINITI APR APR Monthly CYTD CYTD CYTD 2019 2018 % chg 2019 2018 % chg Infiniti Total 8,491 8,960 -5.2 42,806 49,847 -14.1 Infiniti Q50 2,174 1,880 15.6 10,438 13,581 -23.1 Infiniti Q60 425 650 -34.6 1,729 3,253 -46.8 Infiniti Q70 345 272 26.8 1,307 1,763 -25.9 Infiniti QX30 232 671 -65.4 1,809 3,486 -48.1 Infiniti QX50 1,513 1,413 7.1 5,096 5,497 -7.3 Infiniti QX60 2,773 3,052 -9.1 15,603 15,076 3.5 Infiniti QX70 0 102 -100.0 6 672 -99.1 Infiniti QX80 1,029 920 11.8 6,818 6,519 4.6 Total Car 2,944 2,802 5.1 13,474 18,597 -27.5 Total Truck 5,547 6,158 -9.9 29,332 31,250 -6.1 NISSAN GROUP APR APR Monthly CYTD CYTD CYTD 2019 2018 % chg 2019 2018 % chg TOTAL VEHICLE 95,698 87,764 9.0 461,549 503,767 -8.4 Total Car 42,407 39,848 6.4 200,190 222,289 -9.9 Total Truck 53,291 47,916 11.2 261,359 281,478 -7.1 Selling days 25 24 101 101 # # #
  23. Subaru of America Sets New Sales Record with Outback, Forester and Ascent Leading the Charge to Best-Ever April Sales Best April ever – monthly sales increase 7.7 percent over April 2018 89 consecutive months of yearly, month-over-month growth Best April ever for Outback, Forester and Ascent 62 consecutive months of more than 10,000 Outbacks sold 69 consecutive months of more than 10,000 Foresters sold Subaru of America, Inc. today reported 57,288 vehicle sales for April 2019, a 7.7 percent increase compared with April 2018, and the best April in the history of the company. The automaker also reported year-to-date sales of 214,042, a 5.5 percent gain compared with the same period in 2018. April marked the 62nd consecutive month of 40,000+ vehicle sales for the automaker. Outback, Forester and Ascent sales were notably strong as each model achieved its best April ever. Outback posted a 16.3 percent increase, while Forester posted an 8.1 percent increase compared to April 2018. In addition, 6,512 of the all-new 3-row Ascent SUVs were delivered in April. Also in April, Subaru was awarded their fifth consecutive “Most Trusted Brand” award by the Kelley Blue Book Brand Image Awards. Forester and Ascent earned spots on Parents Magazine’s 10 Best Family Cars of 2019. In addition, Ascent made the list of 12 Best New Cars for 2019 from Autotrader. “April saw another Subaru monthly sales record and the reveal of our all-new 2020 Subaru Outback at the New York International Auto Show, both strong indicators of a record sales year to come,” said Thomas J. Doll. “And thanks to the amazing efforts of our retailers, both the current Outback and new Forester maintained a very strong sales pace in a highly competitive marketplace.” “Thanks to our retailer network, we are able to count April as another win in a highly competitive industry,” said Jeff Walters, Senior Vice President of Sales. “We’re thrilled to receive Kelley Blue Book’s ‘Most Trusted Brand’ for a fifth consecutive year as it recognizes our commitment to our customers, as well as to providing drivers with the safest, most capable vehicles in the market.” Carline Apr-19 Apr-18 % Chg Apr-19 Apr-18 % Chg MTD MTD MTD YTD YTD YTD Forester 14,782 13,679 8.1% 55,438 50,783 9.2% Impreza 4,819 5,833 -17.4% 18,598 22,287 -16.6% WRX/STI 2,197 2,663 -17.5% 8,400 9,854 -14.8% Ascent 6,512 0 0.0% 25,585 0 0.0% Legacy 2,991 4,234 -29.4% 11,210 14,730 -23.9% Outback 16,381 14,083 16.3% 58,189 58,205 -0.0% BRZ 287 412 -30.3% 1,106 1,286 -14.0% Crosstrek 9,319 12,266 -24.0% 35,516 45,728 -22.3% TOTAL 57,288 53,170 7.7% 214,042 202,873 5.5%
  24. Toyota Motor North America Reports April 2019 Sales RAV4 sales up 10.1 percent; a best-ever April Tacoma up 8.3 percent; a best-ever April and the 18th consecutive month of increased sales Corolla Hatchback sales increased 14.2 percent; a best-ever April NXh sales up 13.0 percent; a best-ever April and the 19th consecutive best-ever month PLANO, Texas (May 1, 2019) – Toyota Motor North America (TMNA) today reported April 2019 sales of 183,866 vehicles, a decrease of 4.4 percent on a volume basis and a decrease of 8.2 percent on a daily selling rate (DSR) basis versus April 2018. Toyota division posted April sales of 162,506 units, down 4.8 percent on a volume basis and down 8.6 percent on a DSR basis. Lexus division posted April sales of 21,360 vehicles, down 1.3 percent on a volume basis and down 5.3 percent on a DSR basis. April 2019 Highlights Tacoma up 8.3 percent; a best-ever April, with 18 consecutive months of increased sales Toyota light trucks marked a best-ever April, with 102,074 in sales RAV4 sales up of 10.1 percent; a best-ever April Corolla Hatchback sales increased 14.2 percent; a best-ever April Yaris sales up 21.6 percent Mirai sales increased 165.8 percent; a best-ever April LX sales up 4.9 percent ES sales increased by 8.7 percent NXh sales up 13.0 percent; a best-ever April and the 19th consecutive best-ever month RXh sales increased 30.4 percent Lexus Hybrid sales up 60.9 percent Note: Unless otherwise stated, all figures reflect unadjusted raw sales volume
  25. MITSUBISHI MOTORS REPORTS APRIL 2019 SALES CYPRESS, Calif. – Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc. (MMNA), the fastest-growing Asian brand in the U.S. for the second consecutive year1, today reported April 2019 sales of 6,963 vehicles. Calendar year to date sales through the end of April stood at 49,030 vehicles, representing a year-over-year increase of 12% compared to the same period in 2018, and the brand's best calendar year-to-date sales since 2004. April 2019 sales were down 13% over April 2018. News and Notes: Outlander total volume was up 5% year-over-year. Eclipse Cross total volume was up more than 40% year-over-year, marking the vehicle's best-ever April. Mirage and Mirage G4, the most fuel-efficient gasoline-powered non-hybrid vehicle currently available in America2, continue to buck the consumer trend away from sedans and small passenger cars, with total volume up 8.5% year-over-year. APR YTD 2019 2018 2019 2018 Mirage 2004 2069 8246 7601 Lancer3 0 441 0 2503 Outlander Sport 1468 2286 13925 15716 Outlander 2408 2266 16148 15365 Outlander PHEV 163 273 794 1269 Eclipse Cross 920 655 9917 1308 Total 6963 7990 49030 43762

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