Compact Car reviews

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2021 Ford Puma ST

2021 Ford Puma ST

Your Fiesta ST on stilts is served

Ford has unveiled the 2021 Puma ST, the spiciest iteration of the Puma crossover; we doubt there will ever be an RS badge slapped to the Fiesta-based small SUV that Ford assembles in Craiova, Romania. That said, here’s all you need to know about the new Ford Puma ST, which inherits the same 1.5-liter, three-cylinder powerplant Ford debuted in the Fiesta ST.

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2021 Volkswagen ID.4 - The First VW ID To Arrive In The United States

2021 Volkswagen ID.4 - The First VW ID To Arrive In The United States

Is the Volkswagen ID.4 Isn’t a Tesla Killer, But It Can Hold Its Own

The Volkswagen ID.4 – the first ID EV model to make its way to U.S. shores, has finally been revealed, and it looks to compete in a cut-throat segment. Riding on VW’s new MEB architecture, the same underpinnings that supports the ID.3 hatch, the ID.4 features an 82-kWh battery (77-kWh of which is usable) and a rear-mounted motor that’s good for 201 horsepower and 228 pound-feet of torque. VW’s press release promises a range of 520 km or 323 miles on the WLTP scale, which boils down to about 250 miles of range per charge in the real world. To help ease the pain of range anxiety, however, the ID.4 will come with three years of unlimited charging. In a DC fast charger rated at 125 kW, VW claims that the ID.4 can suck in 198 miles worth of electricity in 30 minutes.

According to VW, the ID.4 is capable of hitting 62 mph (100 kph) in 8.5 seconds and tops out at just 99.41 mph. Come spring of 2021, VW will offer an AWD model that will boast a total of 302 horsepower, an extra 101 ponies coming from the front motor. Torque, we suspect will be somewhere in the 300 pound-foot range, but that is purely speculation at this point. VW’s new EV does offer up 8.26-inches (21 cm) of ground clearance, which is said to be enough to handle “gentle off-road terrain.”

The inside is fairly basic for an EV, but comes off as a decent blend between modern design and futuristic tech. A driver-oriented infotainment system sits atop the dash with a small horizontal screen providing basic driving information like speed, range, and the like. Luggage capacity is rated at 19.17 cubic-feet with max storage coming in at 55.62 cubic-feet. Overall, the ID.4 could bring quite the fight to models like the Hyundai Kona EV, Chevy Bolt, and Nissan Leaf, but only time will tell how successful it can really be.

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2021 Mazda CX-30 Turbo

2021 Mazda CX-30 Turbo

Mazda adds turbocharged, 250-horsepower engine to the CX-30

The 2021 Mazda CX-30 Turbo is the range-topping version of the CX-30 subcompact crossover that features a turbocharged version of the SkyActiv-G 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine. The most powerful engine available in the CX-30, the turbo-four joins the naturally aspirated 2.5-liter on the U.S. market and the 2.0-liter gas and 1.8-liter diesel engines on other parts of the world. Rated at up to 250 horsepower depending on the type of fuel, the 2021 CX-30 Turbo is the most powerful version of the crossover built to date.

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2020 Daihatsu Copen R35 GT-R by Liberty Walk

2020 Daihatsu Copen R35 GT-R by Liberty Walk

If you can’t buy a GT-R, buy a Copen and let Liberty Walk work its magic

In the world of Japanese kei cars, the Daihatsu Copen often gets lost in the shuffle, overshadowed by models like the Honda Beat, Suzuki Cappuccino, and yes, even the Autozam AZ-1.

The adorable two-door convertible can hold its own in kei races, and, more importantly, its highly customizable nature allows owners to go stir crazy on custom projects. There are a myriad of ways that you can customize the Copen, including, in this case, turning to Japanese tuner extraordinaire Liberty Walk with a specific requirement: turn it into a Nissan R35 GT-R.

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2020 Honda Civic Hatchback by Mugen

2020 Honda Civic Hatchback by Mugen

You Can Now Make the Base Honda Civic Look a Lot Sportier Thanks to Mugen

When Mugen revealed its parts list for the 2020 Honda Civic Type R, it brought tons of carbon fiber, Alcantara, and some extreme exterior elements. For the most part, the same can be said for the standard Civic hatchback, but nothing is near as extreme. That is, arguably, a good thing, though, so let me explain to you what you can get for the base Civic hatch.

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2021 Hyundai Elantra N Line Sedan

2021 Hyundai Elantra N Line Sedan

We take a closer look at the spiced up Hyundai Elantra N Line

Hyundai has been pushing pretty Elantra numbers over the past three years, with sales comprising between 175,000 and 200,000 units sold yearly. It’s no surprise then that the South Koreans gave the greenlight to a more attractive, N-badged iteration of the Elantra sedan, albeit not in the same verve as a fully-fledged N car, but dressed in what Hyundai calls the N Line treatment.

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2021 Audi S3 Sportback and Sedan

2021 Audi S3 Sportback and Sedan

Audi is sharpening its knives in the premium hot hatch segment

Created to do battle against the likes of BMW M135i, Mercedes-AMG A45, and to some extent, the VW Golf R, Audi’s squeaky-new S3 Sportback (and Sedan) debuts two decades after the original S3 hit the shelves. And we like what we’re seeing.

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2020 Nissan Leaf - Driven

2020 Nissan Leaf - Driven

The Leaf is a mixed bag of the good, the bad, and even some things ugly

Nissan Leaf has been on the block for a decade now. It was one of the earliest entrants in the market and continues to live on. While it can be considered as the veteran in this segment if you go by its age, the Leaf didn’t make a mark like, say, any of the Tesla models did in their respective segment.

The electric hatch comes with acceptable aesthetics and decent tech features, but not the best powertrain or battery specs. But, there’s certainly more to this than meets the eye, and we’re here to uncover it. The Nissan Leaf arrived at TopSpeed’s headquarters recently, and here are our impressions about this urban electric commuter.

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2020 Fiat 500X - Driven

2020 Fiat 500X - Driven

The Fiat 500X isn’t exactly an Italian Stallion, but it’s not super boring, either

The Fiat 500X is somewhat of a quirky vehicle. For starters, Fiat isn’t exactly the most popular brand here in the United States, and when you pair that with the fact that it’s really more of a jacked-up hatchback than a true crossover. As you’ll read a little later on in this in-depth review, the 500X, outside of its standard all-wheel-drive actually fails when it comes to doing a lot of usual crossover things – like carrying lots of cargo. But we’ll discuss that a little further down the page. For now, I want to want to talk to you about what it’s like to drive the 500X and a little more of that quirkiness that, honestly, intrigues me so much.

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2020 Hyundai Venue - Driven

2020 Hyundai Venue - Driven

Hyundai introduced the Venue subcompact crossover for the 2020 model year as an all-new model that’s based on the same platform as the Ascent compact sedan. As a subcompact, you can get a well-equipped model for less than $20,000, but that affordability doesn’t come without its tradeoffs. Being an all-new model, we’ve been itching to see how Hyundai’s latest entry to the U.S. market holds up, especially against long-running nameplates like the Ford EcoSport and Nissan Kicks. We finally got our chance with the mid-level SEL trim, and this is what you can expect from it.

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2021 Ford Bronco Sport

2021 Ford Bronco Sport

The Bronco Sport is an urban crossover that can also go on beaten paths with utmost ease

The Bronco’s revival has made enthusiasts and purists more than happy. But, given how tough the market has become, Ford knew that it would also need a practical vehicle. In comes the Bronco Sport. The Bronco Sport is not as rugged as the standard Bronco and can be very much used as a daily driver as well. If I had to describe it in a sentence, I’d say it’s not an off-roader like the Bronco, but a crossover with a very heavy off-road bias. It has a lot of Bronco shades and vibe all around, but will people accept it as an urban crossover and as their daily driver?

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2021 Suzuki Across

2021 Suzuki Across

Meet the Suzuki Across, the almost-identical twin of the Toyota RAV4

The first fruit to stem from the Toyota-Suzuki partnership struck a while back is called the Across and wears the Suzuki badge, although it’s pretty clear that the outer shell is nothing else but a slightly tweaked Toyota RAV4 body.

That aside, the Across features an interesting plug-in hybrid powertrain that mixes a 2.5-liter internal combustion engine with two electric motors, one for each axle. Here’s all you need to know about the new Suzuki Across.

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