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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry

Categories: Miscellaneous

Smoldering Kia Soul 'Red Rock' Edition Oozes Style

On: Mon, Feb 13, 2012 at 2:29PM | By: Chris Salamone

Kia Soul Red Rock Edition test 2

Unfortunately for most subcompact or compact car buyers, the range of vehicle color options is usually pretty limited. There are exceptions, of course, with Mini and Fiat. But for the most part we’re stuck with vehicles offered in Satin Pearl While, Radiant Red, and the like. Kia, on the other hand, has taken some big risks with their most youthful vehicle, the Soul: from highlighter green, appropriately labeled Alien, to the last six special edition Soul variants which offered wacky colors and accessories to boot.

And the company’s latest seventh special edition Soul tops them all. Just a few days ago, Kia Motors America announced the production of an all-new Red Rock Soul which takes inspiration from the epic rock formations found in the Southwest United States – featuring a snazzy color theme and premium features.

Chevy Sonic: Boon or Bust?

On: Thu, Feb 9, 2012 at 1:50PM | By: Lou Ruggieri

Chevy Sonic: Boon or Bust? test 2

After taking a day to actually take in the game, the football fan in me managed to release my unending analysis of Super Bowl XLVI and the automotive enthusiast in me began to analyze some of the car related details of the big game. After I got over the mad jealousy of watching Eli Manning, who not too long ago received a $96 million contract, get a free (?!), yes free, Corvette Grand Sport convertible for being the Most Valuable Player on the Super Bowl winning team (talk about a pretty good day huh?), I began to evaluate the other interesting move Chevy decided to spend their money on.  

And a lot of money it was. Going with the average of $3.5 million for a 30-second spot this year's Super Bowl was fetching for commercials, and Chevy spend somewhere in the neighborhood of $5-7 million to advertise its relatively new Sonic. We got to the see the Sonic do some pretty amazing things, did we not? Fly out of an airplane, bungee jump, kick flip, create music video, and a myriad of other things we were advised not to try at home. But, for all that money, what did we as consumers learn about the Sonic? Other than the fact that it exists?

Nothing. Absolutely nothing.

Classic Car Cultist: Saab 99 Turbo

On: Tue, Feb 7, 2012 at 12:36PM | By: Chris Salamone

Saab 99 Turbo test 2

What makes a car worthy of the title ‘cult classic’? Do the legions of vintage auto enthusiasts seek then new-fangled technology, drivability, innovative design cues, or historical relevance? If the criteria for a cult classic come from an aromatic mix of the above attributes, then few cars - ever - will rival Saab’s most prestigious thoroughbred, the 99 Turbo.

The 99 Turbo was the car which defined Saab as a brand. Some might call it gimmicky, ridiculous, or perhaps even controversial. But those individuals would be wrong. This was a car which defied consumer expectations and taught the world something new about mass production cars – you could have a smaller, lightweight vehicle including plenty of storage space, without sacrificing fuel economy on the altar of performance.

Chrysler Feels Lucky, Gives Clint Eastwood Shot

On: Fri, Feb 3, 2012 at 4:47PM | By: Chris Salamone

Clint Eastwood test 2

Last year Chrysler unveiled the “Imported from Detroit” ad campaign and the world took notice. From snazzy apparel to enthusiastic newspaper headlines and everything in between, Chrysler’s slogan struck a nerve with just about anyone who would listen – even garnering an Emmy.

And this year’s Super Bowl commercial looks to be no different…except for one big change. This time Eminem will make way for the man, myth, and legend: Clint Eastwood.

2012 will be the second year in a row that Chrysler airs a full two minute Super Bowl commercial, which has apparently become something of a growing trend among companies. The traditional 30 second advertising spot has been Norrised (a la Chuck) in favor of more expensive, entertaining, and ultimately effective campaigns which now have plenty of time to reference a happy animal, show an attractive person, make a joke, and concomitantly sell a product.


Top Ten Annual American Auto Shows

On: Thu, Feb 2, 2012 at 11:45AM | By: David Walter

Top Ten Anual American Auto Shows test 2

The gorgeous Lexus LF-Lc 2+2 Hybrid Sports Coupe Concept (pictured above), Toyota NS4 Plug-in Hybrid Concept, 2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo, 2013 Lincoln MKZ, 2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS, Chevrolet Code 130R and Tru 140S Concepts, Acura NSX Concept, 2013 Ford Fusion, Chrysler 700C, 2013 Cadillac ATS, 2013 Dodge Dart – what do all of these buzz-worthy vehicles have in common? They all debuted at the North American International Auto Show last month in Detroit.

But cheer up – Detroit isn’t only big auto show here in the States. The folks over at insurancequotes.org compiled a list of their top ten U.S. auto shows. Read on to see their list, and start planning now to attend the next big auto show in your area.

Don't Try This At Home: Bentley Continental GT Ski-Joring

On: Wed, Feb 1, 2012 at 2:35PM | By: Chris Weiss

Don't Try This At Home: Bentley Continental GT Ski-Joring test 2

We'd think that if you had the means to own a Bentley Continental GT and lived in the tiny rugged-mountain playground known as Switzerland, you'd be busy train-setting to lavish ski resorts like St. Moritz and Gstaad every weekend. Ski joring sounds like something that you'd take up if you lived someplace like rural Minnesota.

But I guess even Alpine populations need to find new ways to enjoy the snow every now and again. This particular way includes a Bentley Continental GT, a rope tow and a pair of skis.

Fiat Strada Leaps From Brazil To Europe

On: Wed, Feb 1, 2012 at 9:54AM | By: Chris Salamone

Fiat Strada test 2

Anyone who follows our AS Classic Car Cultist thread will tell you that we don’t lack enthusiasm for car-based pickups. And while most Americans might laugh in the face of compact payload capacities, sub-100 horsepower engines, and gimmicky monikers, we see things differently. Which is why Fiat’s recent decision to send their super-mini coupe utility to Europe strikes a chord with us – couldn’t the Strada work for America as well?

Judging by our country’s lukewarm reaction to the currently-available 500 model, perhaps the more radical Strada series might add water to an already ill-fated Italian ship (pun intended). Or perhaps not…the Strada is a vehicle which consists of a unique mix of affordability, practicality, and aesthetic character.

Chevy Giving Away 20 Vehicles During Super Bowl

On: Fri, Jan 27, 2012 at 4:58PM | By: Chris Weiss

Chevy Giving Away 20 Vehicles During Super Bowl test 2

Chevy is really banking on this year's Super Bowl. Not only did it run the Route 66 contest to determine its Super Bowl commercial, now it has a new contest for viewers. Similar to the TweetDrive game that Lexus ran during the playoffs, Chevy's GameTime is a Twitter-based trivia game. Not so similar to the Lexus game, Chevy will give away 20 vehicles to lucky winners.

The GameTime app is available for free download from the App store, Android App Market and over the Web at Chevy.com/gametime. The minute that you download the app, you have the chance to win instantly. You'll also be assigned a license plate number, and if it shows up during Chevy's Super Bowl ad, you'll win one of the 20 vehicles.

Rumor Mill: Dodge Challenger To Become Barracuda

On: Wed, Jan 25, 2012 at 5:03PM | By: Chris Salamone

1968 Plymouth Barracuda test 2

If we learned anything from Detroit this year, it’s that American automakers are ripe with engineering innovation, bold design plans, and business strategy. And, to top it all off, rumors are popping up all over the internet of one particularly enticing possibility. A few credible sources mentioned by Motor Trend speculate that Dodge intends to replace the current Challenger with another blast from the past, the former Plymouth Barracuda.

But don’t expect a revival of the Plymouth nameplate, this Cuda might surface as soon as 2014 – just in time for the model’s 50 year anniversary.

What Lurks Beneath, Corolla Destroys Strip [Video]

On: Mon, Jan 23, 2012 at 2:11PM | By: Chris Salamone

Corolla Sleeper test 2

Pop quiz, what is the single most unlikely car to make an athletic showing on your local drag strip? Aside from a Smart, the third generation Toyota Corolla is probably the next worst option. But not in Australia, the land of recent Frankenstein-like mechanical recreations, this particular Corolla laid waste to the expectations of challengers and onlookers.

Such is the Tao of a true sleeper.

From the outside, the vehicle looks like an off white, straight from the dealership, people hauler which offers no indication of the devious threat lurking within. Upon further inspection, however, viewers might pick up subtle cues of hidden glory – small slicks appear menacingly cute on the vehicle’s rear wheels and few could miss the open hostility of a whining turbo.

To see the Corolla’s full aspect, one must venture further, beneath the confines of the vehicle’s outer shell.

L.L. Bean Bootmobile, Where Rubber Meets Road

On: Fri, Jan 20, 2012 at 12:18PM | By: Chris Salamone

L.L. Bean Bootmobile test 2

As L.L. Bean’s Bootmobile rolled out of the company’s Brunswick factory Tuesday, CEO Chris McCormick asked a jubilant audience of employees, “Isn’t it cool?” To which they responded, "It’s wicked cool.” But the enthusiasm didn’t stop there. Maine Hunting Shoes could be heard from the pitter pattering of feet on almost everyone in attendance.  

From a big picture perspective the Bean Bootmobile is particularly awesome when compared to Oscar Mayer’s aging and vaguely inappropriate Wienermobile. While the Wienermobile conjures images of anything BUT hotdog consumption, the Bootmobile stands as a testament to L.L. Bean’s build quality and iconic heritage. Nothing says ‘buy this boot’ like a 13-foot tall, 21-foot long Maine Hunting Shoe strapped onto the remains of another enduring symbol of quality, the Ford F-250 Super Duty.

Something tells us a Subaru Forester Bootmobile wouldn’t receive the same street cred. Well, at least outside of Maine.