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This Just In: Self-Driving Uber Involved in Fatal Pedestrian Collision

Mon, 03/19/2018 - 2:05pm

Uber has temporarily halted self-driving testing after a pedestrian was struck and killed by one of the ridesharing company’s autonomous vehicles in Tempe, AZ late Sunday night. According to a Tempe police spokesman, the woman was crossing the street outside of a marked crosswalk when she was struck. The Uber vehicle was in self-driving mode with a human safety driver at the wheel, which is standard practice. Uber has addressed the incident and tweeted a response saying, “Our hearts go out to the victim’s family. We’re fully cooperating with @TempePolice and local authorities as they investigate the accident.” This is the first reported fatality involving a self-driving car.
Categories: Syndicated

This Just In: Lincoln Aviator Tease

Mon, 03/19/2018 - 9:41am
With Geneva in the rearview mirror, MotorWeek is looking ahead to the New York International Auto Show.  That’s where we’ll see the debut of a production preview of the all-new Lincoln Aviator.  This is the first of two all-new utilities Lincoln plans to unveil during the next two years.  MotorWeek will be on the floor of the New York International Auto Show later this month.

 

 

Categories: Syndicated

Episodes: Episode 3728

Fri, 03/16/2018 - 4:06pm

Debut 3.16.2018

Description

Track Test: 2018 Kia Stinger GT

Goss' Garage: Handy Helpers

FYI: DIY Car Club

Long Term Update: Honda Odyssey | Subaru Crosstrek

Quick Spin: 2019 Jeep Cherokee

Road Test: 2017 Toyota Highlander

Categories: Syndicated

Podcasts: Mercedes-AMG GT R, Buick Regal Sportback/TourX and Jaguar E-PACE

Fri, 03/16/2018 - 9:12am

Podcast #177

In Podcast 177, John Davis and the MotorWeek crew talk about track testing the Mercedes-AMG GT R. Then, they discuss the new Buick Regal Sportback and TourX wagon. Garick Zikan recounts his drive of the new Jaguar E-Pace. Plus, the panel discusses the impact of Jaguar's all-electric I-Pace, and they answer a viewer question about winter time MPG in the Kia Niro hybrid.

Categories: Syndicated

This Just In: Kia Design, Audi Tech & Lamborghini Milestone

Thu, 03/15/2018 - 1:10pm
Kia is showing us a little more of the all-new K900.  They released this sketch of the interior.  They refer to the wrap-around design as “elegant and minimalist”.  We’ve already gotten a glimpse of the exterior of Kia’s flagship luxury sedan.  The new K900 debut is expected soon, with sales beginning in the spring. Kia has also announced pricing for the 2019 Sorento will start at $25,990. Audi drivers will have more help getting through D.C. traffic.  Audi has expanded its Traffic Light Information to more than 600 intersections in the U.S. capital.  Audi’s “time-to-green” feature shows the driver how many seconds until a red light will turn green.  The service already covers more than 1,600 intersections in six other cities.  There’s certainly demand for the Lamborghini Huracán. Number 10,000 has rolled off the assembly line in Sant’Agata Bolognese, Italy. The V10 Huracán Performante painted Verde Mantis is going to a lucky owner in in Canada.
Categories: Syndicated

Road Tests: Track Test: 2018 Kia Stinger GT

Thu, 03/15/2018 - 7:00am

Vital Statistics

Engine: 3.3 liter

Horsepower: 365

Torque: 376 lb-ft.

0-60 mph: 4.5 seconds

1/4 mile: 13.1 seconds @ 108 mph

We’ve already spent a lot of time behind the wheel of a 2018 Kia Stinger GT compact sport-luxury sedan. But, this is our first chance to really wring out a rear-wheel-drive version at a proper road racing course all to ourselves. 

Getting right to it, after a week of hands on research at Savannah’s Roebling Road Raceway, all of our drivers came away impressed with the lively feel of the Stinger.

At track speed, it is very responsive, and quick to obey your inputs. While steering and suspension feedback is good on the streets, we’d like even more for the track, so you do need a few laps to get a firm grasp on what the car can do. 

But, the twin-turbo V6 has plenty of guts for the track, and delivers a broad spread of lag-free power; it never feels peaky or boosty either, so kudos to them, as that’s hard to do on a twin turbo. And no matter how hard you’re pushing, there always seems to be a little more in reserve. There’s no V8 exhaust note, but it’s not shabby for a V6.

The GT’s Brembo brakes are really good, only showing fade at the end of our track days. Traction was provided by 19-inch wheels wearing Michelin Pilot Sport performance tires.

Play your cards right getting into turns and the Stinger just hunkers down with plenty of grip. Get too eager with the throttle however, and this Stinger will sting, with a predictable amount of oversteer, just the way a driver’s car should.

Having a true 8-speed automatic transmission didn’t seem to hinder things at all; triggering the well-positioned paddle shifters, resulted in very quick shifts. 

Is it perfect? Not quite. Despite all of its capabilities, the Stinger doesn’t have all of the chassis stiffness we’ve come to expect from the best European sport sedans. But, it is only a matter of a small degree.

Front seats are plenty supportive for track work, and thankfully since it’s doubtful too many Stingers will end up there, they are more than comfortable for long distance cruising. 

The Stinger does feel great on the street. So, any lack of track rigidity actually translates into a great highway ride. 

And the available all-wheel-drive adds a level of security for when the weather turns ugly, as well as aids the street handling experience with dynamic torque vectoring, though you do have to pay a penalty in the form of additional weight and less overall responsiveness. 

It was an all-wheel-drive Stinger that we took to the drag strip for ¼-mile testing. Hitting 60 in just 4.5–seconds, it gets off the line quickly with effortless, no drama launches. 

The automatic rifles through gears with ultra-smoothness, and engine power is seamless throughout the band; all helping us complete the ¼-mile in 13.1–seconds at 108 miles-per-hour. Easily the most fun we’ve ever had with a Kia at a drag stip. 

All of that fun happens because of the GT’s twin-turbo V6 in the engine bay, of course. Kia’s 3.3-liter is quick to rev, while it delivers 365–horsepower and 376 lb-ft. of torque. 

Base Stingers do come with the requisite 2.0-liter turbo-4 which punches out a still fine 255–horsepower. 

There’s no doubt that the 5-door hatch is becoming the new norm for performance sedans, and the Stinger’s rear hatch is very well disguised. Plus, it’s hard to fault the added practicality with 23.3 cubic-ft. of cargo room rear seats up, expanding to 40.9 cubic-ft seats down. 

Up front for the driver, is a compact flat-bottom steering wheel, simple yet comprehensive gauge cluster, and Kia’s UVO infotainment with 8.0-inch touchscreen; along with a healthy dose of well-placed traditional controls.   

Base 4-cylinder Stinger pricing is $32,800; V6 GTs start at $39,250. You’re looking at about 50-grand for our GT2 test car. The same sport-sedan ballpark as a BMW 3-Series or Audi S4. 

We know that to some, awarding our MotorWeek Best of the Year Drivers’ Choice Award to the 2018 Kia Stinger may have come as a surprise. But, you would have to live in a padded room not to know this first, true, Euro-styled sport-luxury sedan from a Korean brand is causing quite a stir in the automotive press. And as if we needed it, the proof, as they say, is in the driving.

Categories: Syndicated

This Just In: VW EVs & Subaru Tease

Wed, 03/14/2018 - 10:04am
Volkswagen is charging forward with plans to mass produce electric vehicles.  The company says they plan to produce their line-up of EVs in 16 plants around the world.  Right now they have three facilities.  They also announced they’re working with battery manufacturers for Europe and China and expect to make a decision for North America soon.  Volkswagen plans to produce three million electric vehicles a year by 2025. Subaru is giving us something to look forward to at the New York International Auto Show.  They plan to debut the all-new Subaru Forester in the Big Apple. For now, we just have this teaser photo to go on.  MotorWeek will see it in person during press days for the New York International Auto Show are later this month.

Categories: Syndicated

This Just In: Range Rover Record, New York Debuts

Tue, 03/13/2018 - 12:16pm
It looks like there’s a new record for driving the world-famous Tianmen Road in China.   A Range Rover Sport SVR raced through the 99 turns in 9 minutes 51 seconds.  Right now it’s an unofficial record, but that’s 40 seconds faster than the previous record.  Land Rover says they used a standard production 567-horsepower 5.0-litre V8 supercharged SVR model.  Here’s the video, watch for yourself.

We’re on a wild ride of auto shows.  Next up: New York International Auto Show.  That’s where we’ll see the production version of the 2019 Acura RDX.  We showed you the dynamic looking prototype at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit just a few months ago.  This third-generation Acura RDX will get a new 2.0L VTEC Turbo engine and a  10-speed automatic transmission. There will also be an RDX A-Spec, which is the first time an Acura SUV will be available in a sport appearance variant.  Press days for the New York International Auto Show are later this month.

We’ll also be watching for the 2019 Toyota RAV4.  The all-new, fifth-generation of the compact crossover will make its world debut at the New York International Auto Show.

Categories: Syndicated

This Just In: Audi Tease

Mon, 03/12/2018 - 3:57pm
MotorWeek is always looking on the horizon for something new.  It looks like Audi will soon have something to show us.  They posted this teaser on Twitter.  They’re just showing a silhouette of the GranTurismo Sport.  They’ll share more on April 9th.

Categories: Syndicated

Episodes: Episode 3727

Fri, 03/09/2018 - 4:01pm

Debut 3.09.2018

Description

Track Test: 2017 Bentley Continental Supersports

Goss' Garage: Diamond in the Rough

Over the Edge: Hippie Bus

Long Term Update: Kia Niro

Quick Spin: 2018 Jaguar E-Pace

Quick Spin: 2018 Honda Clarity PHEV

Comparison Test: Midsize SUVs

Categories: Syndicated

Press Releases: MotorWeek adds reporter, Stephanie Hart

Thu, 03/08/2018 - 8:48am

MotorWeek adds reporter, Stephanie Hart

 

 MotorWeek adds Stephanie Hart as feature reporter

 

OWINGS MILLS, MD – Award-winning television reporter and anchor Stephanie Hart has joined the staff of MotorWeek, television’s longest-running automotive series. In her new role with the national public TV series, Hart will serve as feature reporter and producer for the show’s consumer-oriented “FYI” segments.

 

As part of the MotorWeek production staff, Hart will cover trends in the automotive industry that directly affect car ownership, such as evolving safety technology and the integration of personal digital devices into routine car operation.  On a lighter note, she will also explore the backroads of America’s automotive love affair to visit special destinations that no car enthusiast should miss. Her “FYI” segments on MotorWeek will continue to follow a fun- and fact-filled format that has both entertained and enlightened viewers for decades.

 

“I’m grateful and excited to join the talented MotorWeek team. This position is the perfect fit for me. It combines my love of cars, travel and people. I look forward to telling entertaining and educational stories that our viewers can use to make informed decisions about automobiles,” said Hart. 

 

Prior to joining MotorWeek, Hart was a general assignment reporter and fill-in anchor at WUSA9 in Washington, D.C.  Before her tenure with WUSA, she appeared on-air at KMSP in Minneapolis, Minn. Prior to that, she worked at TV stations in West Palm Beach, Fla. and Fort Myers, Fla. as a reporter, anchor and host. The Society of Professional Journalists and the Associated Press have recognized Stephanie for her outstanding long form feature reporting.

 

Created and hosted by car expert John Davis, MotorWeek delivers consumer-oriented reviews of the latest cars, trucks and utility vehicles along with valuable do-it-yourself car care advice and keeps pace with the latest automotive lifestyle trends. 

 

“We are delighted that Stephanie has joined the staff of MotorWeek,” says Davis.  “Her experience in producing and reporting a wide variety of timely stories, mixed with a profound affection for all things cars, makes her a perfect fit with our audience.”

 

MotorWeek is in its 37th season and is seen on PBS stations nationwide, Discovery’s Velocity channel, the V-me Spanish language network, and internationally via Voice of America television. The series is produced by Maryland Public Television.

 

About MotorWeek

MotorWeek is television’s longest running and most respected automotive series. Launched in 1981, the series is now in its 37th season of delivering the latest car and truck reviews, do-it-yourself car care tips, and auto industry news and trends. The Emmy® award-winning program is produced by Maryland Public Television. MotorWeek can also be found on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.

 

Categories: Syndicated

Road Tests: 2018 Bentley Continental Supersports

Thu, 03/08/2018 - 7:00am

Vital Statistics

Engine: 6.0 liter

Horsepower: 700

Torque: 750 lb-ft.

0-60 mph: 3.2 seconds

1/4 mile: 11.5 seconds @ 122 mph

EPA: 11 mpg city / 20 mpg highway

Bentley aficionados know that Supersports models are the best of the best; with cranked up performance, dating all the way back to their 1920s motorsports heydays. Well, Bentley delivers yet again. The Continental Supersports is the fastest Bentley ever. So it’s time to get some posh performance on!

It’s a given that when most Bentley owners hop behind the wheel, it’s off to their country estate, or perhaps to the office of whatever Fortune 500 company they work for. Fortunately, we didn’t have to buy this 2018 Bentley Continental Supersports to try it out. Rather, Bentley was kind enough to “drop it off” for a few days so we could, you know, kick the tires. 

And, we did just that, around the two miles and 9 turns of Roebling Road Raceway near Savannah, Georgia. And, why not? With a top speed of 209 miles-per-hour, it’s the fastest 4-seat luxury car you can buy.

But, that’s only part of why the Supersports is so…well…”super.”

It all starts with the 2nd generation of Volkswagen’s D1 chassis, around since 2012. Then, the front end adds a new bumper with carbon-fiber splitter, while the body work in the rear gets massaged with a new diffuser. 

Side sill extensions, as well as hood vents, are carbon fiber; and finally the rear spoiler has been aerodynamically optimized.   

The last Continental Supersports we tested back in 2011 boasted a measly 621-horsepower. That won’t do these days, so Bentley continues to crank up the aging 6.0-liter twin-turbo W12 engine, which now pushes out 700-horsepower and 750 lb-ft. of torque. Yes, that’s an insane amount of power for any car, but it’s delivered so smoothly, that surely some type of alien technology is also involved. 

Transmission? The same ZF 8-speed automatic, with a nice mechanical feeling shifter, no flimsy e-shifter here, plus large paddles mounted on the steering column.  

Aiming this much opulence around a road course still does not feel natural. But huge standard 16-inch front carbon-ceramic brake rotors help you to get woahed down enough to make corners, and an updated version of the GT3-R’s torque vectoring all-wheel drive helps you power out of them. 

Similar to a well-seasoned veteran on the sport’s field; it may not be as nimble as some of its competition, but it knows what it has and how to use it for maximum effect.  

And like guiding a battleship through a minefield, you have to plan ahead as much as possible, keep inputs smooth, and keep your wits, and abilities, about you to emerge on the other side unscathed.

Find a sweeping back road that leads to a country club, or an ocean side resort; and both you and the car will have a much better time. 

While in the driver’s seat, you’ll be mostly sheltered from the outside world, save for moderate amounts of engine noise and exhaust notes from a new titanium exhaust; but only when you want them. 

If you crave even more exposure, a convertible version is available as well. 

The Supersports racy looking interior comes courtesy of a new tri-color theme, diamond stitching throughout, and of course seemingly limitless choices when it comes to veneers.  

Should you find yourself in the need to get out of town in a hurry, launching this rocket from a standstill is truly a unique experience. 

Hit the gas, and there’s a slight hesitation as you feel all of the brute’s weight transfer to the rear; upon which time it squats and shoots you off the line at full power. 60 miles-per-hour comes in just 3.2-seconds. 

The Supersports never stops piling on the power until you tell it to, and it feels like it’s just getting going when the ¼-mile ends in 11.5-seconds at 122 miles-per-hour. 

Government Fuel Economy Ratings are fitting for a 700-horsepower car, at 11-City, 20-Highway, and 14-Combined.

Neither poshness nor performance come cheap. So you can imagine combining the two makes for a hefty price tag; $299,025 to be exact. Only about 250 or so of the 710 that will be made, are available to us here in the colonies. So, I wouldn’t dawdle if I were you.

A 700-horsepower leather-clad luxury missile would certainly not qualify as a necessity by anyone’s definition. That just makes us want a 2018 Bentley Continental Supersports even more. There may be an all-new Continental not too far in the horizon, but this beast is aging beautifully. 

Categories: Syndicated

This Just In: Geneva International Motor Show

Tue, 03/06/2018 - 10:41am
The doors are open for press days at the 88th Geneva International Motor Show.  Land Rover is bringing something new to the luxury SUV segment: Range Rover SV Coupe.  This two door full-size luxury SUV gets the most powerful engine currently offered on the full-size Range Rover: 557-horsepower 5.0-liter supercharged V8. They’re handmade of course… but they’ll only make 999 worldwide.  U.S. buyers will have to wait until the final few months of 2018 to get one.  The price starts at $295,000 in the U.S. The production version of the 2019 Jaguar I-PACE made its public debut in Geneva.  The world first saw Jaguar’s all-electric SUV during a webcast last week.  MotorWeek saw the concept before it’s reveal at the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show.  Two electric motors, one on each axle, will provide all-wheel drive performance with a 240-mile all-electric range.  We now know the Jaguar I-PACE price will start at $69,500 in the U.S. before federal and local government incentives. Sales begin later this year. The British invasion continues in Geneva with McLaren.  They brought the new McLaren Senna.  The 4.0-litre twin-turbocharged V8 produces nearly 800 horsepower… making it McLaren’ s most powerful internal combustion engine in a road car.  They had already announced they were limiting production to 500 units… and all 500 are already sold.  Still interested? No worries.  The company also unveiled the McLaren Senna GTR Concept.  This is the track only version with more horsepower…  and up to 2204 pounds of downforce.  We’ll know the exact technical details later this year.  The McLaren Senna GTR will be hand built next year… but they only plan to make 75.

Categories: Syndicated

This Just In: Toyota Research & Tempting Lamborghini

Fri, 03/02/2018 - 11:08am
Toyota is stepping up the pace of automated driving.  They’ve joined with Aisin Seiki Co. and Denso Corporation to form a new company called Toyota Research Institute-Advanced Development.  The goal: “accelerate software development in a more effective and disruptive way”.  This new company will be located in Tokyo.  An exact location is still being decided.  The Toyota Research Institute, Inc. has been operating in North America since 2016.  That facility researches artificial intelligence, automated driving, and robotics. Lamborghini is giving us another reason to look forward to the Geneva International Motor Show next week.  They’re promising something new from the Lamborghini Huracán Performante.  It’s only been a year since the 640 horsepower 5.2-liter V10 debuted in Geneva.  Since then it’s been setting records at tracks around Europe.  There’s widespread speculation Lamborghini will unveiled the 2019 Huracán Performante Spyder in Geneva. We’ll see on march 6, 2018.

Categories: Syndicated

Episodes: Episode 3726

Fri, 03/02/2018 - 10:21am

Debut 3.02.2018

Description

Track Test: 2018 Dodge Challenger Hellcat Widebody

Goss' Garage: Ceramic Nano Coating

FYI: Smart Car Shopping

Motor News: 2018 Chicago Auto Show

Road Test: 2018 Lexus LC 500

Categories: Syndicated

Green Motoring: Smart Car Shopping

Fri, 03/02/2018 - 9:15am

So, you want to buy a new car. You know you are likely to own it for at least 7 years or longer. That’s pretty typical these days. So, you not only want to get the best deal today, you also want to make sure it remains a smart choice for many miles and years ahead. Our FYI reporter Lauren Morrison knows the ins and outs of smart car buying, and she’s up next to give us the lowdown.

LAUREN MORRISION: Today’s savvy car buyers know that spending quality time online, researching models, specs and prices...

... ”will save time and money here, on the dealership lot. Doing your homework ahead of time is key, and there are plenty of shopping tools available to help guide your decision.”

Stephen Dupal and his fiancee Sherryn Daniel are in the market for a small, economical commuter car to replace Stephen’s aging Corolla. Before heading to commercial web pages for option packages and pricing info, several federal government sites helped narrow their search in the areas of fuel economy, safety and alternative fuels, three of their key parameters.

The joint Department of Energy and EPA Fuel Economy website provides convenient, one stop shopping for everything most buyers will ever want to know about maximizing mpg in their next car.

Here, consumers can compare up to four different vehicles at a time, and their fuel economy ratings, energy and environment scores, basic engine and transmission size, driving range, and annual fuel costs, along with real-world fuel consumption data provided by actual owners. The web-site had over 25 million user sessions last year!

STEPHEN DUPAL: I like to have like those charts and plots and graphs to kind of compare things in a numerical basis so I know what I’m looking for and then I can verify..oh yes, this car will have what I need based on these metrics..

LAUREN MORRISION: Other useful content on the website, and free fuel economy mobile app, includes driving and maintenance tips to help you get the most out of your vehicle, easy-to-understand descriptions of new vehicle technology, information about available tax incentives for advanced-technology vehicles, trip calculators, and more!

In the area of safety, you can start with the government’s “safercar” website (safercar.gov) for how a car fares in mandated crash testing and rollover ratings. The site spells out which vehicles go beyond requirements, and have cutting edge safety technology.

SHERRYN DANIEL: What I like about the safercar website is there’s just so many little applications, where all we have to do is enter the make and the model of the car, and we can see if it was recalled, we can look for certain safety features, I even learned about rollover that this is the most lethal type of car accident and that with the best type of car, you can prevent damage.

LAUREN MORRISION: But, you’re a consumer or a fleet manager that is up to date... Maybe even ahead of the crowd. So, perhaps a plug-in hybrid or even full electric car fits your lifestyle or business. Or, a vehicle that runs on another non-traditional fuel like e85, bio-diesel, natural gas, propane, or even hydrogen.

Now, you need to know not only the specs, but the pros and cons, and practicality of each fuel. Well, for that, more than 1.5 million users a year check out the Energy Department’s “Alternative Fuels Data Center” website (afdc.energy.gov).

The afdc website and alt-fuel app are designed to eliminate your confusion over the various types of alternative fuels and their vehicles. And now that plug-in and alt-fuel vehicles are being sold with ever increasing range, the website’s fueling station database is enjoying increasing popularity as well.

SHERRYN DANIEL:  …there’s this link where you can just type in your state so, if we bought like a hybrid, or a car that uses natural gas or something like that, we can look up stations nearby ahead of time when we travel.

LAUREN MORRISION: The end game in all this is to be the best informed new car shopper you can possibly be. And ultimately, to buy or lease a new car, SUV, or truck, you can live with today, and way into the future. These commercial-free, dot-gov websites can help you to avoid costly mistakes and surprises, before and after you visit the dealership.

Categories: Syndicated

FYI: Smart Car Shopping

Fri, 03/02/2018 - 9:04am

So, you want to buy a new car. You know you are likely to own it for at least 7 years or longer. That’s pretty typical these days. So, you not only want to get the best deal today, you also want to make sure it remains a smart choice for many miles and years ahead. Our FYI reporter Lauren Morrison knows the ins and outs of smart car buying, and she’s up next to give us the lowdown.

LAUREN MORRISION: Today’s savvy car buyers know that spending quality time online, researching models, specs and prices...

... ”will save time and money here, on the dealership lot. Doing your homework ahead of time is key, and there are plenty of shopping tools available to help guide your decision.”

Stephen Dupal and his fiancee Sherryn Daniel are in the market for a small, economical commuter car to replace Stephen’s aging Corolla. Before heading to commercial web pages for option packages and pricing info, several federal government sites helped narrow their search in the areas of fuel economy, safety and alternative fuels, three of their key parameters.

The joint Department of Energy and EPA Fuel Economy website provides convenient, one stop shopping for everything most buyers will ever want to know about maximizing mpg in their next car.

Here, consumers can compare up to four different vehicles at a time, and their fuel economy ratings, energy and environment scores, basic engine and transmission size, driving range, and annual fuel costs, along with real-world fuel consumption data provided by actual owners. The web-site had over 25 million user sessions last year!

STEPHEN DUPAL: I like to have like those charts and plots and graphs to kind of compare things in a numerical basis so I know what I’m looking for and then I can verify..oh yes, this car will have what I need based on these metrics..

LAUREN MORRISION: Other useful content on the website, and free fuel economy mobile app, includes driving and maintenance tips to help you get the most out of your vehicle, easy-to-understand descriptions of new vehicle technology, information about available tax incentives for advanced-technology vehicles, trip calculators, and more!

In the area of safety, you can start with the government’s “safercar” website (safercar.gov) for how a car fares in mandated crash testing and rollover ratings. The site spells out which vehicles go beyond requirements, and have cutting edge safety technology.

SHERRYN DANIEL: What I like about the safercar website is there’s just so many little applications, where all we have to do is enter the make and the model of the car, and we can see if it was recalled, we can look for certain safety features, I even learned about rollover that this is the most lethal type of car accident and that with the best type of car, you can prevent damage.

LAUREN MORRISION: But, you’re a consumer or a fleet manager that is up to date... Maybe even ahead of the crowd. So, perhaps a plug-in hybrid or even full electric car fits your lifestyle or business. Or, a vehicle that runs on another non-traditional fuel like e85, bio-diesel, natural gas, propane, or even hydrogen.

Now, you need to know not only the specs, but the pros and cons, and practicality of each fuel. Well, for that, more than 1.5 million users a year check out the Energy Department’s “Alternative Fuels Data Center” website (afdc.energy.gov).

The afdc website and alt-fuel app are designed to eliminate your confusion over the various types of alternative fuels and their vehicles. And now that plug-in and alt-fuel vehicles are being sold with ever increasing range, the website’s fueling station database is enjoying increasing popularity as well.

SHERRYN DANIEL:  …there’s this link where you can just type in your state so, if we bought like a hybrid, or a car that uses natural gas or something like that, we can look up stations nearby ahead of time when we travel.

LAUREN MORRISION: The end game in all this is to be the best informed new car shopper you can possibly be. And ultimately, to buy or lease a new car, SUV, or truck, you can live with today, and way into the future. These commercial-free, dot-gov websites can help you to avoid costly mistakes and surprises, before and after you visit the dealership.

Categories: Syndicated

Podcasts: Porsche 918, Subaru BRZ ts/STI RA, Bentley Continental Supersports

Fri, 03/02/2018 - 8:00am

Podcast #176

In Podcast 176, Brian Robinson and the MotorWeek gang talk about the Bentley Continental Supersports. Then Greg Carloss recaps his recent drive of the Porsche 918 Spyder and Zach Maskell discusses his drive of the new Subaru BRZ tS and STI RA. Plus, the panel discusses the future of diesel engines in America, and they answer a viewer question about oversteer and understeer.

Categories: Syndicated

This Just In: Partnership Proceeding

Thu, 03/01/2018 - 9:47am
The process is moving fast forward to solidify the alliance among Renault, Nissan and Mitsubishi.  They’ve announced efforts are underway to converge key parts of their operations including engineering, manufacturing, and purchasing.  Renault and Nissan have been doing this for four years.  The plan will bring Mitsubishi Motors into more of the alliance’s operations beginning in April.  Mitsubishi will be fully part of the alliance’s engineering and manufacturing starting in 2019.
Categories: Syndicated

Road Tests: 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Widebody

Thu, 03/01/2018 - 8:00am

Vital Statistics

Engine: 6.2 liter

Horsepower: 707

Torque: 650 lb-ft.

0-60 mph: 3.4 seconds

1/4 mile: 10.9 seconds @ 127 mph

It’s hard to think of another car that had as big of an impact on the automotive world last year than the 840-horsepower Dodge Challenger SRT Demon. But if you don’t already have one, you won’t get one. Not to worry, Dodge is spreading the Demon’s wealth onto it’s more attainable 707-horsepower Hellcat Widebody. But, this is about more than just looking fierce. So, time to let this cat out of the bag.

At the risk of turning away viewers, we’ll spill the beans right away, that the 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Widebody is essentially an SRT Demon without its 840-horsepower Hemi. 

But like most things, the devil’s in the details; and diving into them, reveals that the Widebody is actually more than the sum of its parts. Those widened fenders from the Demon allow for stuffing in more road-gripping rubber, 305/35/20s in this case, which of course helps handling. Girth is good. 

And, all of that rubber also allows you to launch a little better as well, dropping 0-60 by a tenth to 3.4-seconds and ¼-mile time to 10.9-seconds at 127.   

Not that this Hellcat has magically become a kitty cat, there is still all of Satan’s fury you’re trying to transfer to the pavement. Thus, it’s still not for the faint of heart, or perfect for anything other than a fully prepped drag strip. Although, the long front stretch at Roebling Road Raceway certainly will do in a pinch. 

You still have your choice of 6-speed manual or 8-speed automatic with paddle shifters. 

We flogged both a Hellcat Challenger and Charger sedan around Roebling’s 9 turns in 2015, and found they were much more adept at destroying asphalt than clinging to it. 

That has clearly changed for the better. Along with the wider tires, the Widebody gets new electric power steering; incorporated into the SRT performance pages so it can be adjusted independently, or as part of the preprogrammed drive modes.

But, even with handling improvements, some things have not changed. The Widebody still feels wide and heavy; perhaps taking out some weight and lowering it, would have been better than just adding wider tires.

But ohhhh that 707-horsepower engine! No surprise, power is more than plentiful, and it sneaks up on you quickly. There’s enough of it here to overpower any part of the track except the straight. You know it’s coming on in waves with the throttle down, so just plan accordingly. All told, it is a very controllable car… once you get a feel for it. 

Of course it’s a 6.2-liter supercharged HEMI that’s providing all of that thrust, accompanied by a healthy dose of supercharger whine; same output as the original Hellcat, 7-0-7 H-P, with a massive 650 lb-ft. of torque. 

On track, the manual paddles shifters for the TorqueFlight transmission were a tad slow to respond; but left in drive it always seemed to make the proper decision on its own. It’s hard to tell what gear you’re in anyway, as the readout is very small; but there’s so much torque, you never seem to be in the wrong one. 

As before, you’re taking all of this in from the widest, most comfortable muscle car seat out there. And away from the track, the Challenger still offers a wealth of comfort for a wide range of people, and even a great highway ride.

To get wide and wicked with a Hellcat Widebody will cost you $72,590, 6-grand over a base Hellcat; though I’m sure not many people are actually buying base Hellcats. 

So, this 2018 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat Widebody may not the perfect nail-downed trackalete, but it is still wildly entertaining. Also, Dodge understands their customers better than we do; and knows that any type of neutering of this beast would be unacceptable. It remains “the heavy-fisted muscle car brute with the soul of a Viper” that we’ve come to love, now just more track and street friendly. So, drivers, start your Hemi…and proceed with caution!

Categories: Syndicated