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  Resonabled Priced Car

Ever since the Nisan Versa came to the U.S. back in 2007, the little car proved that cheap transportation didn’t have to be so dreary. While it’s no GT-R in terms of styling, the sedan and hatchback versions of the car sold well. In 2013, Nissan revamped the Versa for its second generation and added the Note name to designate the Hatchback version from the sedan .

Now for 2015, Nissan is adding a little more spice with the SR trim package on the Versa Note hatchback. While nothing changes mechanically, the SR trim does bring some sportiness to the car’s interior. Things like a new leather-wrapped steering wheel, suede look-alike material on the seats with orange accent double stitching. A refreshed center instrument panel is finished out in piano black plastic with silver accents and chrome knobs. It also gets a Fine Vision three-dial gauge cluster with a floating trip computer.

The SR sport trim package is also joined by the new top-of-the-line SL trim package for 2015, rounding out the S, S Plus, and SV trim lines.

The Versa Note SR represents Nissan’s up-marketing of the Versa in response to the stiffening competition. Cars like the Ford Fiesta, Chevy Spark, Honda Fit, and Toyota Yaris are all strong in the segment. The argument gets even easier to debate once IIHS ratings are taken into account, with the Spark earning the relatively best score of the bunch.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Nissan Versa Note SR.

We never bother covering 10-minute Nϋrburgring times. In fact, anything over eight minutes is not really worth our time. And we have never, nor did we ever plan to cover a Citroen AX Diesel . I mean, with just 52 horsepower, it is pretty obvious why we just have no interest in it. That said, when you combine these two typically boring topics, we suddenly become really interested.

It takes a pretty good driver to lap the `Ring in under 10 minutes in any normal car, but to do so in this 52-horsepower, bone-stock hatchback not only takes skills, but it also takes a set of gonads large enough to need their own area code. Well, this fine gentleman must have put his set in the trunk, as they were nowhere in sight, but he managed to clear the bridge-to-gantry run in 9:55.

Watching him work that underpowered diesel engine like a champ was a thing of beauty. As he stated, the AX’s 1,360 cc diesel engine is a dog once the 720 kg (1,590-pound) car loses its momentum, so he had to push this puny hatchback with what appeared to be nothing more than bicycle tires under it further than some of us may be comfortable in a modern supercar .

Don’t think that he simply hopped in his AX and headed to the `Ring for a quick session when he broke the 10-minute barrier. He did 118 laps around the Nϋrburgring to get to know the course, then it took him 10 full-throttle attempts to get it under 10 minutes. That is some serious perseverance, folks.

Out hats off to you. Regardless of how much you downplayed in on the YouTube post, that was some amazing driving and awesome reflexes.


If you’re the BMW i3 , you’re probably sweating over all the attention the BMW i8 is generating, and there’s good reason for that. The i8, after all, is like the stud athlete of the family, whereas the i3 is the the little brother struggling to come out of big bro’s shadow.

But don’t tell that to Lumma Design, the noted BMW tuner who loves the i3 equally. In fact, the new CLR i8 program developed for the i8 also has an i3 counterpart: the CLR i3 Concept.

Like the CLR i8, the CLR i3 also comes with a comprehensive body kit that’s become tantamount to an awesome makeover for the BMW i3. The new front lip spoiler adds a more aggressive appearance to the hatchback, whereas the new hood, which is made from carbon fiber from the looks of it, is the kind of high-end stamp you normally see supercars receive. Same goes for the carbon-fiber side skirts and the set of 22-inch alloy wheels.

The CLR i3 program also looks like it’s ripe to receive a performance upgrade. After all, you make this hatch look as good as it does, thanks to all those cosmetic and aerodynamic changes, without a matching performance tune.

We’re waiting for the complete program for the i3, Lumma Design. You got off to a great start with the aero mods; now’s the time to finish it off with a bang the BMW i3 deserves.

Click past the jump to read about the BMW i3

Source: Lumma Design

Rob Riggle’s brand of humor can be a little over the top sometimes, but this new Ford commercial for the Super Bowl, doesn’t show that off.

Here we see a more subdued Riggle talking to a coffee-sipping Ford exec while describing the benefits of driving a Ford hybrid. At one point, Riggle even ventures into the world of mythology to make his point, comparing the hybrid to a griffin complete with a soliloquy about the griffin having the "head of an eagle, the body of a lion."

We don’t know if we can necessarily compare a Ford hybrid (maybe he was talking about a Fusion Hybrid ?) to that mythic creature, but we do see the point of Riggle’s comparison. If anything, he does a good job of selling his spiel, even though it doesn’t make much sense at all.

Oh, well. Guess that’s how Ford is going to roll with its set of ads for the Super Bowl. Maybe it has more up its sleeve, but this one, while pretty funny in a Rob Riggle kind of way, misses on what the #nearlydouble hashtag is trying to get across.

Click past the jump to read about the 2014 Ford Fusion Hybrid

Crash safety is an important thing and vehicles these days are safer than ever before. But the auto industry took a hard hit when the Institute of Insurance and Highway Safety recently released its review of 11 subcompact minicars for the 2013 and 2014 model years.

Out of 11 cars tested in the IIHS’s small overlap crash test, only the Chevy Spark received an “acceptable” rating while the other contenders got lesser scores of “marginal” or “poor.” None of the cars earned the best rating of “good.” With the Spark’s advantage in the small overlap test, combined with its “good” ratings in the IIHS’ other crash tests, the Spark was awarded a 2014 Top Safety Pick.

The small overlap test has gotten its share of flack since its introduction in August 2012. Automakers complain the test wasn’t announced far enough in advance for new models already in development to accommodate the new crash standards. It appears the Honda Fit , Fiat 500 , Hyundai Accent , Nissan Versa , Mitsubishi Mirage , and the Toyota Prius C were the ones who missed the memo – all scoring the lowest score of “poor.” The Ford Fiesta , Toyota Yaris , Kia Rio , and Mazda2 fared a bit better with a score of “marginal.”

Mind you, the small overlap crash is only one test out of several conducted by the IIHS including the moderate overlap and side impact. Clicking past the jump will shows the complete video chronicles of the 11 mincars.

Click past the jump to watch the IIHS crash these 11 minicars

Posted on by Simona  
Chevrolet Cruze

This isn’t the first time we’ve caught the next-generation Chevrolet Cruze out testing, but this is the first time that we managed to snop off a few pictures of its interior. Though the shots of the Cruze ’s interior are not complete, we still have to say that we like what we’re looking at so far.

As revealed by these spy shots, it looks like the 2015 Cruze will get a new, large touchscreen, a new multi-function steering wheel, a stitched dash and plenty of chrome accents throughout the cabin. It looks like the Cruze will also feature an additional "Eco" mode, and will come equipped with park-assist sensors, a voice-recognition system and possibly a lane-departure warning system.

GM will build the 2015 Cruze — codenamed "D2SC" — on its new Delta chassis that it will share with several other cars, including the next Volt , Equinox and Opel Astra . We know very little else about the new Cruze up to this point, but we do expect it to get a lineup of improved engines that will focus on reducing fuel consumption.

For the U.S. market, the 2015 Cruze will go into production in late 2014 at the Lordstown assembly plant.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Chevrolet Cruze.

Posted on by Simona  

Cadillac unveiled a first ELR concept back in 2011 and ever since then everyone was pretty sure a production will also follow. Things got pretty clear in 2012 when a leak from OnStar confirmed Cadillac will dive into the hybrid realm with a vehicle not named "Escalade ." The model finally made its world debut at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show and according to the first official details we have, it offers "an unprecedented combination of luxury, advanced engineering and progressive design."

However, this is not the first time in Caddy’s long history that it’s tread into the economy car world. The first one was the laughably Cavalier-like Cimarron. If you recall, Cadillac was so embarrassed by the Cimarron that the automaker refused to call it a Cadillac and instead dubbed it the “Cimarron by Cadillac” originally. GM later forced a name change to “Cadillac Cimarron.”

Needless to say Caddy does not want to relive those days, so they took things pretty serious with the ELR. The model is being powered by the latest GM EREV technology that combined a pure electric drive and an efficient, range-extending 1.4 liter gasoline-powered electric generator.

Updated 02/10/2014: Cadillac unveiled a first commercial for its new ELR electric coupe featuring actor Neil McDonough. Enjoy!

Updated 03/25/2014: Cadillac unveiled a new video for the new ELR coupe which hopes it will help it sell the electric coupe better. Enjoy!

Click past the jump to read the entire review to see if the ELR will end up on TIME’s “50 Worst Cars of All Time” list alongside the Cimarron.

Toyota has invested a lot into the redesigned 2014 Corolla sedan, heralding its new designs both inside and out as fresh and exciting, but despite the new looks, the Corolla falls short in the safety department. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety ranks the new Corolla as “marginal” in the small-overlap crash test.

The new-for-2013 small overlap crash test has caught many automakers off-guard with its stringent new standards, but Toyota is feeling the ill effects with many of its vehicles. The Camry, Prius V , and RAV4 all received a “poor” rating in the new test. As a result, those vehicles will not qualify for the IIHS Top Safety Pick and Top Safety Pick+ honors.

During the test, the Corolla suffered damage to the driver’s foot well, raising the chances of lower-leg injuries. The dummy’s head also rolled to the left of the airbag and could potentially strike the A-pillar or dashboard. Luckily, the side curtain airbag deployed properly and prevented any injuries to the dummy’s head.

Toyota was obviously not happy with the results. Spokesman John Hanson even questioned the new standard’s relevancy by saying, “When all-new crash tests are introduced by the [IIHS], we need to be confident that the changes needed to accommodate the tests will enhance overall safety in real-world crashes.”

The IIHS says the new standards are in response to research suggesting that 25 percent of all highway deaths are caused by small overlap head-on collisions.

The news isn’t all bad for Toyota, however. The redesigned Scion tC earned the second-highest safety rating of “acceptable” in the small-overlap frontal crash test back in August.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Toyota Corolla

With every passing year, compact cars seem to get better and better, so it’s no surprise that the the Sentra is not the same entry-level, cheapo Nissan it used to be. Our Sentra tester is fitted with the SR trim package, which adds in plenty of bells and whistles that you would expect from a more expensive vehicle, including keyless entry, push-button start and navigation. The best part is the price; at $21,550 as tested, the Sentra SR offers plenty of bang for your buck.

The Sentra SR’s exterior is very well appointed with LED headlight surrounds, sport front and rear bumpers, and side skirts that look like they belong in "The Fast and the Furious" series. Even the alloy wheels look pretty good for the price.

What really pulls the whole exterior together is that Electric Metallic Blue paint that we last saw on the 370Z a few years back. Sure, it’s not a Ferrari, but there’s a lot to take in for the price point.

Nissan Sentra SR

The interior is a not quite as satisfying as the outside, but the push-button start and navigation system for under $22k, we’re not complaining.

The seats are cloth, but they look good for the class, and the dash is padded with the more expensive, soft plastic. Add to that trimming that doesn’t feel like it was stamped in the same Chinese factory as your iPhone case, and the overall interior package is fairly attractive. Top that with good rear leg room, nice visibility all around and folding rear seats, and you have a flexible product with very little compromises.

On the road, the Sentra drives okay, but with a CVT driving the front wheels, it is not an overly exhilarating experience. The leather-wrapped steering wheel feels better than a lot of more expensive cars, and the CVT does a good job at limiting torque steer and unwanted movement in the steering wheel.

The suspension is comfortable for daily use, but it also allows you to take corners with confidence. We even caught ourselves taking a few corners fast enough to get a little feedback from the tires, which added a some extra fun to the drive. Is it Porsche fun? No, but it is above average for the econo-box class.

Overall The Nissan Sentra SR gives you a lot for your money. On the outside, it looks good enough to prevent your buddies from chuckling at you when you roll up in it, and inside, you have plenty of premium features to keep you happy for years to come.

Of course, with the 2014 Toyota Corolla debuting a sporty look, your choice of entry-level sedans is getting harder.

Toyota Corolla
Toyota Corolla
Nissan Sentra SR
Posted on by TB +  

The Ford Fiesta sedan and hatch are fresh for 2014, with a nose restyle and additional interior features, like an optional touchscreen infotainment. The biggest mechanical news comes from the hot Fiesta ST performance model, but the humble four-door sedan and five-door hatchbacks are packing a new EcoBoost option as well.

Ford is bringing the award-winning EcoBoost 1.0-liter three-cylinder to the U.S.-market Fiesta for 2014, where the engine’s 148 pound-feet of torque will be the top offering. The in-line-three cylinder engine is a marvel of power and efficiency, with a predicted mpg score that is well above even the 41 highway rating of the Special Fuel Economy version of the sedan.

The Fiesta’s previous styling effort and lackluster engines have slowed the adoption of this compact car by most U.S. shoppers. 2014’s tasteful new nose helps bring the Fiesta’s appearance in line with the handsome new Fusion – with a sculpted trapezoidal grille with horizontal chrome slats. Paired with the Fiesta’s new bumpers and hood-mounted Blue Oval badge – the Fiesta is finally looking chic enough to be cross-shopped with the Fiat 500 and other fashion super-minis.

In reality, the bulk of the Fiesta’s market is also considering the Chevrolet Sonic and Dodge Dart – but benchmarking the Fiat 500 is important for the Ford to attract young city drivers. Among this ‘fashion compact’ segment, the Fiat ’s quirky design and image helps make the car seem more like an accessory – a designer handbag of a car instead of just boring transport.

Click past the jump to see how the 2014 Ford Fiesta compares with rivals, plus detailed information on the new EcoBoost three-cylinder engine’s performance chops.


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