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Fresh Looks, New Tech, and Electrification Spearhead the Many Changes of the 2021 Volkswagen Tiguan

Fresh Looks, New Tech, and Electrification Spearhead the Many Changes of the 2021 Volkswagen Tiguan

The 2021 Volkswagen Tiguan R packs 315 horsepower

It’s been almost four years since Volkswagen launched the second-generation Tiguan, and the crossover was just unveiled with a mid-cycle facelift. The Tiguan was mildly revised inside and out, but there’s big news in the form of a plug-in hybrid model, a performance-oriented R version, and a new AWD system with selective wheel torque control. Let’s find out more about all of that below.

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2020 Nissan Sentra - Driven

2020 Nissan Sentra - Driven

Forget (most of) what you knew about Nissan’s compact sedan

The last two generations of Nissan Sentra have followed a simple formula: a spacious interior, a smooth ride, great gas mileage, and low prices. For plenty of compact-sedan buyers, that’s a winning formula. But it came at the expense of driving pleasure — to the extreme. Last year’s Nissan Sentra wasn’t merely dull, but downright awful if you try to get some grins. Its wheezy 124-horsepower engine struggled under all but the gentlest acceleration, and its handling betrayed an alarming lack of composure for a modern small car. And while its upright styling could be considered elegant from some angles, it just looked tall and narrow from others.

For the 2020 model year, Nissan has worked to reinvent the Sentra. A striking new body sits atop a more sophisticated suspension and wraps around a more potent engine and a fancier interior. All the while, Nissan has kept prices in check and even improved the Sentra’s gas mileage.

Do the changes turn the Sentra into a class leader? Not exactly. Even after this year’s improvements, you can still find quicker, sharper-handling, more luxuriously-finished small sedans. And if you loved the old Sentra because you could get a huge backseat and trunk at a fire-sale price, the new model will feel like a step backward.

By becoming more similar to competitors like the latest Toyota Corolla, Hyundai Elantra, and Kia Forte, the 2020 Sentra loses the old model’s standout spaciousness and value — but it brings fresh advantages to the table all while keeping costs in check.

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2021 Kia Seltos - Driven

2021 Kia Seltos - Driven

The Kia Seltos - a car that avoids the flaws commonly found in the subcompact crossover market

The subcompact crossover class has so much potential. Best-selling “compact” models like the Toyota RAV4, Honda CR-V, Nissan Rogue, and Chevrolet Equinox have gotten fantastically spacious, refined — and expensive. A modern CR-V or RAV4 is just as big, fancy, and costly as midsize models used to be. For lots of people, they’re still a great deal: for as little as $25,000, you get ample space for four or even five adults and their stuff, all the latest advanced safety features, a fully featured touchscreen infotainment system, and great gas mileage. But lots of people don’t need or even want something this big, or at least aren’t eager to pay for it. So most automakers now offer a subcompact model that’s smaller and less expensive than their compact.

What’s puzzling, though, is how flawed most of these subcompact crossovers have proven to be. Many of them are polarizing styling statements, sometimes with looks that compromise their utility even more than their scaled-down dimensions do. A surprising number of them offer no all-wheel-drive. Some suffer from execution flaws like underpowered yet inefficient engines, compromised interior layouts, or clumsy driving dynamics. Each model that gets a lot right has also had at least one serious flaw — whether it’s the fun-to-drive but cramped Hyundai Kona and Mazda CX-3 and CX-30; the spacious but slow, noisy Honda HR-V; the pleasant but overpriced Nissan Rogue Sport; the off-road-ready, on-road-jerky Jeep Renegade and Subaru Crosstrek; or a host of other would-be contenders. That’s to say nothing of the ones that, well, don’t get a lot right. Why, oh why, couldn’t someone just take everything that people love about a compact crossover and simply make it a little smaller and less expensive?

At long last, that call has been answered. The all-new 2021 Kia Seltos is a mechanical cousin to the Hyundai Kona, but it’s taller and longer. And that’s just what was needed to address the Kona’s lower, more car-like seating position and its tight rear seating. This makes the Seltos the first truly well-rounded subcompact crossover, delivering all-around competence with no disastrous downsides. It’s handsome, functional, fun to drive, fuel-efficient, and affordable. While no car is perfect — certain buyers will gravitate toward the specific advantages of some Seltos competitors — this is the only subcompact crossover that has something for just about everyone.

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2021 Subaru Crosstrek

2021 Subaru Crosstrek

These updates make the 2021 Crosstrek an absolute cracker of a package

The Subaru Crosstrek is one of the most underrated crossovers available in the market today. It is one of the best-selling Subarus in the States, but not the breadwinner for the Japanese automaker. The crossover has been lauded for its excellent overall value for money, hatch-like driving experience, and versatility. It is essentially an Impreza with an off-road bias.

The company introduced the second-gen of the crossover in 2018, and for the 2021 model, Subaru has refreshed the car. It comes with a few aesthetic changes, a new mill under the hood, and a new trim. Will this help boost the Crosstrek’s sales?

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Top 10 Best Cars for New Drivers

Top 10 Best Cars for New Drivers

Understanding that what you want doesn’t necessarily mean what you need

It goes without saying that buying your first car is a big deal. It’s one thing to just go and buy one car that suits your fancy; it’s another thing entirely to buy one that does more than that.

There are a lot of things to consider when buying your first car. Does the car suit your taste? Does it have a spacious interior? Is it fuel efficient? How well does it ride? Is it fast? Is it powerful? While you’re not obligated to answer all these questions, you need to find the ones that you want answers to. That’s going to shape your decision-making process. Of course, the ultimate question still has to be answered: how much does it cost? Get an idea on what you can and can’t buy, and you’re on your way to taking that next big step in your life.

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How Does the 2021 Toyota Venza Compare to the Competition?

How Does the 2021 Toyota Venza Compare to the Competition?

If priced wisely, the Venza could become a serious threat to its rivals

The Venza nameplate has made a return to Toyota’s stable after a five-year hiatus. The new Venza is a two-row SUV that slots between the RAV4 and the Highlander in the company’s lineup. This SUV is essentially a rebadged Harrier that’s sold in the Japanese market. To make it stand out from the competition and offer a fuel-efficient SUV to the customers, the Venza will be offered as a hybrid-only SUV.

But, is this enough to waive off the competition in the thickly stacked segment where almost every automaker has a presence? Here’s how the Venza stands when pit against the Ford Edge, Chevy Blazer, Hyundai Santa Fe, Kia Sorento, Honda Passport, and the Nissan Murano.

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Latest spy shots:

The 2021 Suzuki Jimny (Maruti Gypsy) Could Be a Mini Hummer

The 2021 Suzuki Jimny (Maruti Gypsy) Could Be a Mini Hummer

Such bold designs will be a hit in India

The Indian market has been craving the Jimny for a very long time. Despite holding a 50-percent market share with Maruti in India, Suzuki has shied away from offering the car to one of the fastest-growing automotive markets today. Instead, the company sells an off-roader called Gypsy which is essentially a rebadged Jimny/Samurai from the 80s. This, too, is built only on special orders for the Indian Army and cannot be purchased by civilians.

Rumors of the Jimny making its debut in India has been doing rounds for a very long time, but now it looks like there is some information on it. The 2021 Jimny is expected to be launched with the ‘Gypsy’ badge and could have a Mini-Hummer look. The motive behind this is to match its direct competitor – the Mahindra Thar – in terms of shape and size. But, can you fathom an XL-sized Jimny?

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10 Surprising Facts About the Suzuki Samurai

10 Surprising Facts About the Suzuki Samurai

The Samurai was a fantastic little off-roader that deserved to stay longer in the States

The Suzuki Samurai reached our shores in 1985 but lived a very short life before the sales hit rock bottom. However, that was enough for enthusiasts and purists to realize that this little off-roader will be remembered for ages to come by. The Samurai was cheap and affordable, and its compact size made it stand out from the horde of other big, bulky, off-road SUVs and trucks.

Over the years, people have realized that the Samurai can go places that even the more accomplished off-roaders can’t. Currently sold as the Jimny worldwide, Suzuki has sold almost three million copies to date since its inception in 1970. Although the Samurai was quite famous in the States, there are a few things that not many people know about. So, here’s a list of 10 surprising facts about the Suzuki Samurai.

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Comparing the Smallest Crossovers: 2020 Hyundai Venue vs. 2020 Kia Soul vs. 2020 Nissan Kicks

Comparing the Smallest Crossovers: 2020 Hyundai Venue vs. 2020 Kia Soul vs. 2020 Nissan Kicks

We test three affordable subcompacts and pick a winner

Ever since Subaru lifted the Legacy’s suspension, slapped on some body cladding, and called it the Outback, it’s been harder and harder to draw a firm line between ’regular’ cars and SUVs. And we recently drove three vehicles that are right in that blurry area. Their manufacturers call them crossovers, and they’re tall and plastic-clad. But they’re tiny and come only with front-wheel-drive.

Whatever you call them, the all-new 2020 Hyundai Venue, the freshly-redesigned 2020 Kia Soul, and the 2020 Nissan Kicks are a lot of vehicle for the money. They all start below $20,000, all get at least 30 mpg, and all have higher seating positions and more cargo room than a sedan. They slot under their brands’ crossovers that already wear the pint-sized label of subcompact — the Hyundai Kona, Kia Seltos, and Nissan Rogue Sport — to provide an even lower price and even more city-friendly parking abilities.

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2019 - 2020 KTM 790 Adventure / 790 Adventure R

2019 - 2020 KTM 790 Adventure / 790 Adventure R

Riders asked for it - KTM delivers it

KTM hit 2019 with a new platform for adventure fans: the 790 Adventure and 790 Adventure R. The factory credits its own customer base with the design of this new adventuresome duo, as they’re both based on direct feedback from same. As a result, they come off the showroom floor with a definite head start in the comfort and rideability departments.

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2019 - 2020 KTM 690 SMC R

2019 - 2020 KTM 690 SMC R

KTM’s favorite jackass bike is back and better than ever

KTM souped up its SuperMoto-tastic 690 SMC R for a 2019 return with more of everything that made its predecessor a success. That’s right, a new powerplant drives KTM’s newest version of its popular jackass bike, and it comes with new control and ride-quality electronics that helps you safely get the most out of the machine. Whether you’re into drifting around turns or trick-riding shenanigans, this hooligan bike has something to offer.

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This Rendering Of A Hyundai Pickup Truck Looks Ready To Take On The Likes Of Ford Ranger

This Rendering Of A Hyundai Pickup Truck Looks Ready To Take On The Likes Of Ford Ranger

It looks like a good fit to the company’s profile

Hyundai has been away from the pickup truck market and there is no logical reason for it. However, the company unveiled a pickup truck concept called Santa Cruz in 2015 and it finally looked like the automaker has realized what it’s losing out on. People would’ve expected Hyundai to launch a full-fledged, hardcore truck to leave a strong impression, but the Santa Cruz is a unibody pickup truck, which means that the automaker is offering a jack-of-all-master-of-none kind of a truck. However, a rendering artist named Enoch Gabriel Gonzales has envisioned a truck which he calls Tarlac, and it falls in line with the company’s design philosophy. Looks neat, huh?

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Latest BMW:

The 2021 Nissan Frontier Could Get A Lot More Expensive

The 2021 Nissan Frontier Could Get A Lot More Expensive

A premium of over $7,500 as compared to the 2019 model’s starting price!

The Nissan Frontier is known for its rock-like build and reliability. The truck is over a decade old, but Nissan hasn’t really given it any new clothes or makeup over the years. However, the 2021 model is expected to bring about a lot of changes. Generally, such changes rarely command a significant price increase, and that seems to be the case with the Frontier.

According to a report from CarsDirect, the Nissan Frontier’s starting price will be increased by over $7,500! The 2019 Nissan Frontier starts at $18,636, but the 2021 model is expected to come with a starting price tag of $26,280. That’s an increase of almost 45-percent! But, why? Is it going to come with gold screws and bolts?

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The Ford F-150 PHEV Will Have Enough Electric Range to Get You Down the Driveway

The Ford F-150 PHEV Will Have Enough Electric Range to Get You Down the Driveway

Plug it in for 10 miles of range? This is the truck equivalent of an iPhone 6!

Since the electric F-150 is still some time away, the focus has been on the plug-in hybrid version of the truck lately. What made this news even interesting was that the hybrid version would be based on the 3.5-liter, V-6 EcoBoost engine. Basically, a lot of hopes were pinned on this hybrid mill considering it would serve as a bridge between the internal combustion engine range to a pure electric truck and would give us an idea of what to expect.

Well, as it turns out, Ford just pulled one over on us. According to Car And Driver, the PHEV F-150 will run only 10 miles on electric electric before switching back to gas. So much for all the buzz surrounding the mill.

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