topspeed garage

topspeed garage

Posted on by Bryan 5

Our motto at this website is ‘no boring cars’. Whether that’s sports cars, Italian exotics, or super luxurious sedans, we love them all. For this review though, we decided to change things up a bit. We wanted to find out what you can and can’t do in a truck during a week test and, living up to our motto, we went all out and got one of the biggest heavy duty trucks on the market, the 2010 Dodge Ram 2500 Heavy Duty Mega Cab.

The Ram 2500 might not be everyone’s choice for a daily driver and to be honest, it wasn’t ours either, but we put all that aside and used this four-door, four-wheel drive turbo diesel behemoth every day of the week, during which time we never came close to the truck’s full capabilities.

Although it couldn’t fit in our garage, or in a normal parking space, we did our best. Hit the jump to see how the week went and our new review style.

Posted on by Bryan 6

Going to see a film is one of the best ways to get out, and one film we saw last year comes to mind: Transformers 2. After the first film, we were expecting something incredible. Fast sports cars, gorgeous women - Megan Fox - and of course, robots transforming into things. What could be better than that?

For all the special effects and explosions, underneath it all was a film that was lacking. The humor in the film was a bit off and not to mention the script wasn’t nearly on par with the first movie. Everything that one needs to make a film great was there, but it just didn’t come together the way it should have.

For all it’s mobster looks and massive power, the 2010 Chrysler 300S suffers from the same problems that plagued the film about transforming robots. Underneath that bulging exterior is a vehicle that’s lacking in many different ways.

Hit the jump to keep reading.

Posted on by Bryan 3

Volkswagen has been one of the leaders in what we like to call, the real green car movement. No hybrids for us thank you, unless of course it’s the Honda CR-Z because that’s the exception to the rule. Diesel power has long been a hallmark of the company’s push in Europe and now, with TDI fully establishing in the United States, the newest generation Jetta is ready to get it’s diesel motor.

The question was never if diesel vehicles were brilliant, the question has always been, will Americans buy them? For many years the answer to that question was a resounding no. Like a little girl that just can’t get her way, Volkswagen will continue to push diesel power in our lives and the new Jetta TDI is one hell of a strong argument.

The newestJetta is an interesting story. Volkswagen and their world domination plan has taken away some of the German aspects from the sedan and cheapened it up for the American market to compete with the Honda Civic and the Toyota Corolla . But unlike those two vehicles, the Jetta can be fitted with a diesel. Consider that one point in Volkswagen’s court.

Hit the jump to read on.

Posted on by Bryan 5

Jaguar Design Director, Ian Callum, is a genius. Maybe not literally, but in the design world, the man can’t be beat. With great results, Callum has redesigned the Jaguar product line for the new millennium. One can tell that the XF was simply the beginning of a grand reshaping that has taken over the company. The new XJ and XK are just some examples for the XF’s revolutionary design.

It took a team three years to create the car you see in the photo above. At the time, the launch of the car was overshadowed by the worrisome future of the company itself. That meant that the XF was important for more reasons than one might think. If the car was a hit - which it was bound to be - it could save the brand and give the business a new value.

There is no need to get into the company’s business plans. We all know that once Ford let them go, an Indian company bought them. The company is called Tata and although it’s not a very flattering name, they have helped turn Jaguar into the company you see today.

Hit the jump to keep reading.

Posted on by Bryan 1

When one takes time to think about how the years have gone by it can be a tad bit overwhelming. The days of grunge rock don’t seem like they were that long ago, but one glimpse at the calendar and it’s clear that time sure has flown.

Many years ago, back in the late 1980s, there was an interesting trend happening in New York City. The baseball team that was consistently overshadowed has grown up and become a major player in the race for the title. The Mets had always been the baby brother of the Yankees. They were never quite good enough and they never had millions of fans from around the world. Yet, as the Yankees declined, the Mets grew.

That brings us right to the Subaru WRX . For years, the normal WRX has been in the shadows of the bigger and faster STI variant, but those days seem to be over. With the 2011 model year, the WRX has gone off to camp and come home a grown up, ready to take on the sports sedan world like never before.

Hit the jump to read on.

Posted on by Bryan 2

The Ford Mustang is like apple pie and baseball in the United States. The Chevrolet Corvette might be in that phrase somewhere, but we like the Mustang more. In the minds of many different Americans, the Mustang hasn’t changed a whole lot under the skin. While we’ve had some fancy Roush versions and the GT500, most Mustangs actually haven’t changed much and that can easily be said about the base V6 version.

The previous home of the base Mustang was the rental car fleet for people traveling on business trips, because leisure in a previous generation Mustang V6 wouldn’t be possible. Not to mention many thought of the V6 powered Mustang as a sacrilege that could only be purchased if the world were ending. To sum it up, it was crap.

With 2011 came the same bum economy, a still falling apart Motor City, and a new base Mustang. Luckily, while the first two were a tad depressing, the latter will change the way you think about the Mustang V6. Gone is the stone age 4.0-liter V6, replaced by an all-new 3.7-liter with 305 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque. Hold your breath and clinch your rear, because here in the rear kicker, the motor still delivers 31 miles per gallon.

Hit the jump to keep reading.

Posted on by Bryan 2

This morning, we woke up to a normal day. It was a bit cold, being that it’s September in Northern Ohio, but all in all a good day in the year 2010. At least, we thought it was 2010 because when we looked outside it seemed to be 1969. In the driveway was a Dodge Challenger SRT-8 , a Chevrolet Camaro , and the Ford Mustang GT. Three cars that might have our current year before their names, but look like their older generations.

The new Chevrolet Camaro has just about the same overall look of the older versions from the late 1960s. Except, of course, in a few interesting areas. The tires are much larger, the back end looks like it’s had too much cake, and the beltline is hiked up like a nerd’s trouser line. Not to mention the squished roof that makes the car appear fatter than it actually is.

Our SS version had a smattering of SS badges, massive 20-inch wheels, a hood scoop, and a rear spoiler. The front slot – located on the front fascia – doesn’t actually do anything, as it’s just for show. All these vulgar additions help the car stand out like a man wearing an orange suit in a Ritz-Carlton hotel ballroom.

Hit the jump to keep reading.

Posted on by Bryan 17

In this current economic and environmental situation, the new 2010 Dodge Challenger is like building a mansion for a banker in the middle of downtown Detroit. Not only isn’t it the best place to live, but it might be a bit inappropriate to the underprivileged of the city. Building a car that manages to get 13 miles per gallon and uses a motor the size of a tug boat seems a tad off in today’s green age.

That being said, they’re not the only ones who are going all out to kill more endangered animals in the arctic. Ford has the Mustang - although their new V6 gets 31 miles per gallon - and Chevrolet has the new Camaro SS , both aren’t exactly green.

During the Challenger’s first year, Chrysler was on the ropes and was looking down the barrel of demise. With Fiat taking control of the helm, the company seems to headed in the right direction, but let’s not forget that this muscle car was created during darker days.

Hit the jump to read the rest of the review.

Posted on by Bryan 8

It wasn’t that long ago that Ford was offering us vehicles that were just plain awful. Showrooms were filled with Five-Hundreds, older Escapes, and current generation Focus models. Could this have been the reason why Ford went down the tubes? Possibly.

Ford wasn’t alone though, as General Motors and Chrysler were falling like dominoes as well. General Motors owned more car companies than Coca Cola does drink brands, and needless to say, it wasn’t working. Pontiac went down the drain, as did Oldsmobile, Hummer, and Saturn. What they were left with wasChevrolet , Cadillac , and Buick , three companies that failed to offer a competitive vehicle.

Chrysler , who owned Dodge and Jeep, might have been worse off, if that’s possible. Most of the Jeep products were horrendous and Dodge was in the same boat. Chrysler on the other hand, had a hit on its hands with the 300C, but outside of that, most of their products weren’t very good. After it was all said and done, Chrysler was partly taken over by Fiat, in the attempt to turn the company around and GM was in the hands of the government.

Among the big three car makers in the United States, Ford has undertaken the largest overhaul. The new 2011 Mustang and the new Fiesta are just starting points, but they have changed the way we think about the company. They are wonderfully built, gorgeous to look at, and sensational to drive.

The next machine to come out of the Ford juggernaut is the 2012 Focus , which will be shown at the 2010 Paris Auto Show in just days. The new Focus is an example of Ford’s “One Ford Ford ” product strategy and it will likely be the largest seller for the company. The Focus that we have been seeing in photos will be sold in Europe and in North America, with a few changes in the motor offerings and minor details.

Hit the jump to read on.

Posted on by Bryan 18

During our drive of the new 2011 Jeep Grand Cherokee , we overheard many shoppers commenting about a need for four-wheel drive in their vehicles. Now, let’s be honest for a moment. Most of these moms and dads will never use the abilities of a four-wheel drive machine. The parking lot at the local grocery store doesn’t have rocks that you need to scale in order to get into the parking lot or deep lakes in front of the door.

Yet, there are those who do use these machines the way they are supposed to be used. A real four-wheel drive machine can do so much in the rough stuff that it’s hard to be stopped. Crossovers and luxury SUVs – besides the Range Rover – would be left for dead.

When looking at the top ten vehicles that have wonderful off-road abilities we first need to find ten of them. It was actually quite a task to find ten vehicles like this. It seems the days of the big off-road SUV are in the past. When we managed to locate them, we looked at build quality, off-road ability, on-road ability, style, comfort, and power.

Hit the jump to see the list.

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