A Week With the Unimaginative 2020 Kia Sportage SX AWD

I’ve driven quite a few Kia vehicles over the last few years and generally have been quite impressed with them all. Like fellow South Korean auto manufacturer Hyundai, Kia keeps improving their cars each year, now delivering some of the best budget vehicles on the road. But the journey to being an A List car maker isn’t without its bumps, and after spending a week driving the 2020 Kia Sportage SX, I have to say…Read More

Top Down, Sun Out with the 2021 BMW 430i Convertible

BMW has been generous with its vehicle loans and I actually wrote extensively about the 2021 BMW 430i just a month or two ago. You can check out my review and road test commentary here: A Week With the 2021 BMW 430i xDrive Coupe. In summary, I observed that it was sleek, comfortable, fun to drive, but marred by the “beaver teeth” front grill and some acceleration problems from a full stop. The acceleration problem…Read More

1500 Miles in a 2021 Honda Accord Hybrid TRG

I just got back a few days ago from my summer road trip: Boulder to Kansas City and thence the Lake of the Ozarks, where I relaxed for a week with my kids and enjoyed both the summer heat and the cool indoor air conditioning. I wrote about the Lake trip elsewhere – see Summer Vacation at the Lake of the Ozarks – but what I didn’t talk much about was the transit. Honda kindly…Read More

The 2021 Rocky Mountain Driving Experience (Part 2)

Note: This is part 2. Please start here, as needed: The 2021 Rocky Mountain Driving Experience (part 1) I’d enjoyed driving the 2022 Nissan Frontier with Derek, the Nissan product specialist, but generally speaking, I prefer to drive these vehicles solo so I can screw with settings, crank the stereo, stop if I see something interesting (or a good photo backdrop), etc. Next up in the driving queue was a solo drive of the… 2021…Read More

The 2021 Rocky Mountain Driving Experience (part 1)

It’s been a few years since the Rocky Mountain Automotive Press team pulled together a Rocky Mountain Driving Experience event for us auto writers and media types. You can guess why, but suffice to say it was great to get back with the group just a few days ago and take over the roads above Morrison, Colorado. Most famously, that’s where Red Rocks Amphitheater is, but our base was just a few miles away at…Read More

2020 Kia Sportage SX AWD: Yet Another Compact SUV

I’ve been driving a number of different Kia vehicles recently, finding each a solid option in its class with lots of nice design touches and external design. Most recently, the sporty Kia K5 GT sedan, but I also liked the Kia Sorento X-Line too, which is, yes, a compact SUV. When I had the chance to drive the entry-level 2020 Kia Sportage SX AWD, I expected something quite similar to the Sorento. But I was…Read More

The 2021 Kia K5 GT-Line AWD: A Sweet Little Sedan

I’ve been driving a number of different Kia vehicles this year, and each is an impressive entrant in its category. There’s no question, Kia Motors has quickly evolved to be a somewhat underrated A-list player. I suspect that most car buyers still think of the brand as being a step down in performance and luxury when compared to the premium manufacturers, but that’s no longer accurate. Get behind the wheel of a Kia and your…Read More

Livin’ Life Large with the 2021 Cadillac Escalade 4WD Sport Platinum

My usual measure of a vehicle is how it balances comfort, power, tech, and fuel efficiency, but you really can’t use all four of these criteria to measure the behemoth 2021 Cadillac Escalade. It’s ridiculously comfortable, plenty powerful and built upon more tech than you can shake a stick at. But fuel efficiency? Let’s just defer that discussion until a bit later. Suffice to say if you want a green, eco vehicle, this is not…Read More

Cruisin’ with the Terrific 2021 Ford Bronco Sport First Edition 4×4

It all started way back in 1966, when Ford Motor Company introduced a “sport utility” vehicle called the Bronco. It had three models, the Roadster, the Wagon, and the Sport Utility. It did really well and over the years, Ford has gone through five major redesigns of the vehicle, ending its production run in 1996 as it was replaced by the Ford Explorer and then the Expedition. Until this year, when Ford announced it was…Read More

A Week Of Driving the Terrific 2021 Kia Sorento X-Line AWD

Go to the Kia Motors Web site, check out the Sorento lineup and you’ll find that there are a lot of trim levels, ranging from LX, to S, EX, SX and SX Prestige, but the one trim level that isn’t listed is the “X-Line”. It’s the top of the line for every component on the vehicle, from bumpers to mirrors, pedals to roof rails. It’s also semi-mythical at this point because of how incredibly popular this…Read More

Luxury, but Little Personality: The 2021 Lexus ES 250 AWD

If you’re buying a premium luxury vehicle, you’re likely looking for more than just a good drive experience, you also seek a vehicle with a strong brand identity. BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Maserati, Alfa-Romeo, even Tesla have established a certain reputation. Drivers who seek a car with that particular personality head to the car-maker’s lots to check out the offerings. Lexus, the premium upmarket Toyota brand, is also in this category and for the most part, the…Read More

A Week Behind the Wheel of the 2021 BMW 430i xDrive Coupe

Let’s just get this out of the way first, as it’s going to be a big theme of this writeup: The 2021 BMW 430i xDrive Coupe is a beautiful car with sleek, gorgeous lines and a nicely appointed interior, marred by a ghastly front grill. It’s hard to understand what the BMW design engineers were thinking when they added the “beaver teeth” chrome-edged grill to the front of a vehicle that has literally zero chrome…Read More

2021 Buick Envision Essence FWD: Gradually Embracing the Future

Car manufacturers spend billions creating a brand identity. Think of Ferarri and it’s a sexy sports car. Think of BMW and it’s a sleek “driving machine”. Think about VW and it’s the people’s car. Subaru? Outdoors fanatics. Toyota? Reliability, perhaps at the cost of being less design-oriented than other manufacturers. But think of Buick and, well, the company knows the uphill journey it’s on with its old “It’s not your father’s automobile” slogan. No question,…Read More

The Terrific, Underrated 2021 Kia Sorento Hybrid EX

Kia is one of those carmakers that keeps improving its product year over year, without the car buying public necessarily realizing it’s happening. One of my buddies is a big fan of both Kia and Hyundai, both Korean-based car manufacturers, so I hear all about the latest improvements and model releases. As a result, I was definitely interested when Kia offered me the chance to drive the 2021 Kia Sorento Hybrid EX and was appreciative…Read More

Plugging in with the 2021 Toyota RAV-4 Prime Hybrid

32 miles is a special number in the world of automobiles. The reason is buried in ABC’s study on commuting, wherein they state that commuters “report an average one-way commute time of 26 minutes (over an average distance of 16 miles).” 32 miles, then, is the average round-trip commute in the United States. Lots of people have shorter commutes and some unfortunate souls have much longer commutes. When I’ve reviewed plug-in hybrid vehicles, one of…Read More

The 2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat: A Beast In Disguise

The lure of a supercar is that even sitting still it looks fast and sexy. Then there are the more pedestrian vehicles that look like they’re parked even when they’re zipping down the highway. The 2021 Dodge Durango SRT Hellcat I was loaned by Dodge lands somewhere in the middle: In fact, it’s the Clark Kent of cars. From the outside, it’s a rather mild-mannered SUV with very little exceptional about its design, but under…Read More

Livin’ the Van Life with the 2021 Chrysler Pacifica LTD

Cargo trucks, vans, and small buses were great utilitarian vehicles but they also beget a new type of vehicle: The minivan. First introduced in 1983, the Dodge Caravan (and its sibling the Plymouth Voyager) launched the segment, a category of vehicle that was destined to be a craze for many years. From its peak of almost 7% of all vehicle sales in the mid-2000’s, the minivan has subsequently lost market share year after year to…Read More

The Sporty 2021 Honda Accord Hybrid TRG Review

The last few vehicles I’ve driven have all hovered in the mid-20’s for fuel efficiency, but the latest generation of engines and vehicle design can support driving a lot further per gallon of gasoline. I’ve wondered if perhaps too much of the industry’s attention focused on electric vehicles and SUVs? Maybe not, if the 2021 Honda Accord Hybrid TRG is representative. Its sporty lines, peppy drive, and smart interior design demonstrate how far Honda’s has…Read More

The 2021 Mercedes-Benz GLA250 SUV. Yes, A Mercedes SUV.

There’s really been no way to ignore it, consumer zeal for sport-utility vehicles has just kept growing and dominating the car marketplace. Just about everyone in the biz makes one now, from the Porsche Cayenne to the Rolls Royce Cullinan, to the somewhat awkwardly named Lamborghini Urus. BMW has an entire lineup of SUVs with its terrific X5 as a centerpiece. But Mercedes-Benz? The first Mercedes I ever drove was my father-in-law’s older sedan and…Read More

A Perfect Spring Weekend with the 2021 Chevrolet Suburban 4WD High Country

One unsurprising consequence of children getting older is that family travel logistics get more and more difficult. By the time one or more are off to college – or launched into their lives – getting everyone together for even a short trip can be quite challenging. Then there’s the question of “with significant others?” or is it a family-only trip, which might have some family members appreciative while others sulk and spend all their time…Read More

We Almost Drove to KC In a 2021 Toyota Venza

We were all set for a fun spring road trip, Denver to Kansas City, a drive I’ve taken dozens of times. Y’know the old joke about Kansas being flatter than a pancake? It is. It’s not the most exciting drive but I do like Kansas City and my 17yo daughter and I were looking forward to a weekend there, some good BBQ, and some time on the open road too. Our reason for travel was…Read More