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2021 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Z51 - Driven

2021 Chevrolet C8 Corvette Z51 - Driven

Chevy’s resident supercar squares off with more expensive models - does it stand a chance?

Chevy quite literally redefined what the Corvette name means when it unveiled the all-new, mid-engined C8 Corvette – a model that was decades in the making. Finally bringing the mid-engine configuration to the Corvette was no easy undertaking, but in the end, the new Corvette looked like a supercar, performed like a high-end sportscar, and created quite a stir in the automotive community thanks to its attractive low price. It seems impossible that a car like the C8 Corvette could retail for less than $60,000, but as promised it does ($59,995 as of the time of this writing). This makes the C8 Corvette come off as a much-cheaper alternative to many exotic cars, so how does it hold up? We spent a week with the 2021 C8 Corvette 3LT with the Z51 performance package to find out.

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2021 Cadillac XT6 - Driven

2021 Cadillac XT6 - Driven

The XT6 checks almost all the boxes, but it lacks the pizzazz that its German rivals offer

The Cadillac XT6 is a fairly new kid on the block. It is a full-fledged three-row SUV that comes with a smart exterior, a host of features inside the cabin, and two different engine options to choose from. For the 2021 model year, the company has introduced a new base trim with a four-cylinder engine option.

The higher trims, however, come with the big V-6 that is neither fuel-efficient nor too powerful. Even on paper, it doesn’t feel as accomplished as the BMW X5 and the Audi Q7. The XT6 doesn’t feel like a threat to its German counterparts, but it’s still an all-rounded SUV that offers a lot of bang for the buck. Can Cadillac make the XT6 a threatening proposition in the coming years?

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2021 Volvo V60 Cross Country - Driven

2021 Volvo V60 Cross Country - Driven

Can a station wagon survive an SUV world?

It’s almost ancient history now, but the Volvo station wagon spent years as a staple of upscale families. Luxurious without being ostentatious, known for its safety, and able to carry plenty of cargo, it was a fixture at field hockey practice — at least until SUVs took over that mantle. Even in the Volvo lineup, the station wagon is an afterthought next to the XC40, XC60, and XC90 crossovers.

But is that because SUVs are better than station wagons? Or are wagons unfairly overlooked and deserving of more attention? Volvo does still sell two wagons: the compact V60 and the midsize V90. We spent a week with the Volvo V60 Cross Country to see what a Volvo station wagon has to offer in this decade.

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2020 Mercedes E450 Cabriolet - Driven

2020 Mercedes E450 Cabriolet - Driven

The topless midsize Mercedes makes quite the offering if you’ve got $75,000 to burn

In a world where SUVs have all but taken over the market, there are fewer sedans and coupes to choose from. That reality is even worse for those looking for something with a top that gracefully stows away in the rear for unlimited headroom on demand. In fact, if you want a decent convertible these days, you’re only good option is either going with a roadster – like the Mercedes SLC or Jaguar F-Type – or something more conventional like the Audi S5 Cabriolet or the car we have here: A Mercedes E450 4Matic Cabriolet. Naturally positioned between the C-Class and the S-Class, the E-Class starts out right around $71,000, making it perfect for anyone who doesn’t want a smaller C-Class but can’t afford the six-figure price of the larger S-Class. So, what’s it like to live with the E-Class Cabrio? Well, I’m glad you asked, because we just spent a week with it and this is our story.

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2020 GMC Canyon - Driven

2020 GMC Canyon - Driven

The automaker has revamped and rejigged the Canyon lineup, and it looks more balanced than before

GMC Canyon has been around for quite some time now, and together with the Chevy Colorado, it is raking up respectable numbers for General Motors. The Canyon is positioned as a more premium and stylish version of the Colorado. Thanks to the growing competition, GMC has had to put its best foot forward to not let the newcomers like the Jeep Gladiator take a share of its pie.

To make sure of this, GMC has rejigged the 2021 Canyon’s lineup by making some big changes. For starters, the top-spec Denali trim has gotten all the more premium, while the All-Terrain trim is dropped in favor of the exciting new AT4 trim that is present on the big brother Sierra as well. Will these changes and additions be able to induce more sales for GMC?

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2020 Rolls-Royce Cullinan - Driven

2020 Rolls-Royce Cullinan - Driven

Does A Rolls-Royce SUV have a real place in this world?

From the outside, and to the 99-percenters, the Rolls-Royce Cullinan looks like an over-priced BMW or a reworked Phantom with a taller roof that was designed to keep the brand from falling into the abyss of irrelevant brands. In fact, you might actually be right to some extent. The Cullinan does look a lot like the Phantom in the front thanks to the big rectangular grille, boxy headlights, and square front end. And, the brand is owned by BMW, so yeah, there’s some Bimmer DNA there too. That said, the Cullinan is the very first Rolls-Royce SUV and, outside of that, it also introduced a lot of new tech for the brand, including an off-road driving mode and all-wheel drive. Introduced in 2017, the Rolls-Royce Cullinan has been on the market for a few years now, and it’s been staring down the barrel of the Bentley Bentayga ever since. So, how does is hold up three years in? Well, we spent a week with the Cullinan to find out for ourselves, and this is what you need to know.

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2021 Volvo XC90 T8 - Driven

2021 Volvo XC90 T8 - Driven

Volvo’s range-topping SUV sees some updates for 2021

One of the oldest models in Volvo’s current lineup is still one of its most important. Despite being a six-year-old design now, Volvo is still selling its XC90 like hotcakes. And to keep things fresh, it has tweaked it for the 2021 model year and is offering it with a host of different engine choices.

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2020 Jeep Compass - Driven

2020 Jeep Compass - Driven

It’s not the best vehicle in the segment, but it checks almost all the boxes quite comfortably

Jeep Compass has been in the market for over a decade now and has become a staple moniker in the segment now. This two-row SUV is one of the rare models in this segment that can actually be taken off the roads without doubting its abilities. Of course, it’s no Cherokee, but it does a lot better than its rivals in this aspect. Although it features a heavy 2.4-liter engine, the power outputs aren’t that great and the nine-speed automatic gearbox makes the whole drive even more lethargic. However, it comes with a nice interior setup, decent tech features, and aesthetics that will please all and offend none. So, should you pick the Jeep Compass over the Honda CR-V or the Ford Escape?

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2020 Genesis G70 Sport - Driven

2020 Genesis G70 Sport - Driven

The Genesis G70 is an underrated sedan that strikes the perfect balance between performance and luxury

The 2020 Genesis G70 is just a two-year-old car, but you cannot call it an amateur by any means. The company has managed to crack the code to make a sedan that is strong on performance, drives well in the real world, comes with all the bells and whistles, and feels luxurious inside-out. In a horde of other luxury sport sedans that include the Germans and the Japanese, this South Korean is the underdog that has all the potential to beat its rivals.

A top-spec 2020 G70 recently arrived at Top Speed’s headquarters and here are our impressions.

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2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid - Driven

2020 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid - Driven

When economy, comfort, and practicality blend together into a nice package

When Hyundai introduced the eighth-gen Sonata in 2019, it essentially built on top of the already awesome styling that was brought with the seventh-gen’s mid-cycle facelift. Today, the car looks like it sits in a higher price bracket than it does and in hybrid form it delivers some pretty impressive fuel economy figures too. Does the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid have the looks, comfort, and driving experience to nudge itself above cars like the Toyota Camry Hybrid and Honda Accord Hybrid? Well, we just spent a week with the Sonata Hybrid, and we actually have a lot to say about it. Here’s what you need to know.

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2021 Jaguar F-Type - Driven

2021 Jaguar F-Type - Driven

Jaguar’s sporty convertible has some strong selling points, but is it Porsche 911 and Mercedes SL good?

It took 27 years for the Jaguar F-Type to be born, with its roots tracing all the way back to the XJ41 and XJ42 concepts of 1986. There was also the F-Type Concept back in 2000 and the C-X16 Concept in 2011. Finally, in 2013, this sexy two-seater grand tourer was born and – oddly enough – it was launched as a convertible first with the coupe model to follow a year later. That is, technically where the F-Type’s story stops as it’s been on the market ever since, soldiering on as a first-generation model. It was facelifted in 2019 for the 2020 model year and we’ve been wondering if the now-seven-year-old F-Type has aged as well as other dinosaurs on the market like the Dodge Challenger (2008) and Nissan GT-R (2007). Well, we finally got behind the wheel of the Jaguar F-Type P380 AWD, and let’s just say that we had a lot of fun. This is what you need to know about it.

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2020 Mercedes-AMG GT C - Driven

2020 Mercedes-AMG GT C - Driven

How is the AMG GT C in the real world?

Drive the new Mercedes-AMG GT C and you will get attention wherever you go. It is a very special car that hopes to go after the Porsche 911. We found the car to be a work of art. This is definitely not an ordinary car. It is extremely quick and full of luxury touches so the question becomes is it worth the price? It really depends on your paycheck so let’s dig deeper.

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2020 Genesis G90 - Driven

2020 Genesis G90 - Driven

After an extensive facelift, is the 2020 Genesis G90 a formidable competitor to the Lexus LS and Audi A8?

When we first saw the Genesis G90 at its debut, we know that Hyundai’s luxury arm was onto something, but the G90 suffered from the same thing most new models fall victim to – there was definitely some room for improvement. For the 2020 model year, Genesis revamped the G90 rather extensively, and we finally got a chance to check it out in person. Does the G90 finally live up to the Halo it’s meant to wear in Genesis’ lineup? And can the Genesis G90 wholeheartedly compete with cars like the Lexus LS and Audi A8? It’s time we find out!

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2020 BMW M8 Gran Coupe Driven

2020 BMW M8 Gran Coupe Driven

Is the M8 Gran Coupe just another niche four-door coupe or is there more to it?

The BMW M8 Gran Coupe offers the same rapid and effortless acceleration, impressive interior, and command of the road without the sacrifice that comes with owning the standard M8 – a lack of interior space. In a sense, the M8 Gran Coupe sort of fixes everything that was wrong with the M8 coupe while bringing the M8 to a place where it’s more capable of carrying a family or – at the very least – four full-grown adults. Does the mean that the M8 Gran Coupe is just another four-door coupe or is there more substance to it? We spent a week with one to find out, and this is what we’ve learned.

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2020 Land Rover Defender - Driven

2020 Land Rover Defender - Driven

An SUV with a premium interior, powerful engine, and numerous gizmos that make off-roading a walk in the park

The Land Rover Defender needs no introduction. After a long run, the company sent it on a hiatus in 2016, only for it to return in a freshed, modern avatar to keep up with the competition. It came out looking a little less old-school, but still as rugged as ever.

This time, it wasn’t just the sturdy build that made it a compelling off-roader, but also the modern gadgets and gizmos that could put the other off-roaders out there to shame. The top trim is dangerously close to the six-digit price territory, but will that stop people from buying it? Or will customers look at other cheaper alternatives, like the Toyota 4Runner and to an extent, the Jeep Grand Cherokee?

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2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime - Driven

2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime - Driven

How well does the Toyota RAV4Prime hold up in the real world?

Any new version of the Toyota RAV4 is automatically a big deal. Aside from a few big pickup trucks, the RAV4 is America’s favorite vehicle. And it has also been a winner among eco-conscious buyers; not long after the gas/electric RAV4 Hybrid debuted in 2016, it became America’s favorite hybrid — even outselling Toyota’s iconic Prius.

So when Toyota announced the 2021 RAV4 Prime, it was a big deal. Forget about the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, a low-range plug-in hybrid version of a forgettable SUV. Forget about a planned Ford Escape plug-in hybrid, which doesn’t offer all-wheel-drive and whose on-sale date got bumped back a year over fire risks. Forget about various plug-in sedans and hatchbacks, and various expensive luxury plug-in hybrids that can barely crack 20 miles of low-speed all-electric use. And forget about the range anxiety that keeps many people away from fully electric vehicles. No, it’s the RAV4 Prime that promises to make Americans plug in their cars en masse.

We spent a week in the new 2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime to see how it bridges the gap between the gasoline and electric worlds. Here’s what we found.

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2020 Buick Encore GX - Driven

2020 Buick Encore GX - Driven

The Encore GX is a no non-sense SUV with a small footprint, but that’s about it

The Buick Encore GX is marketed as a small luxury SUV and it lives up to its name. It comes with a lot of features in the base trim and offers two engine options and drive layouts for you to choose from. The SUV looks decent on the outside, is as spacious as its rivals on the inside, and generates enough grunt to keep you happy pottering around in the city. For tasks like carrying your grocery and taking your kid to school, this urban commuter does its job well. But, expecting anything beyond it is a cardinal sin. With a fairly low starting price and heavy discounts on offer, will you choose this over the Audi Q3 and the BMW X1?

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Kia Seltos - Driven

Kia Seltos - Driven

The Kia Seltos is the newcomer to Kia’s lineup. It’s been in production since 2019, but 2021 marks the first year that it will be available on U.S. soil. It has just recently made it into dealerships as Kia begins to roll out its 2021 crop of vehicles, and it’s poised to make quite the disruption in the subcompact crossover market. Of course, let’s be clear, this still isn’t Kia’s smallest model – it’s the model designed to sit between the Soul and the Sportage. Highlights of the Seltos include better-than-expected cargo room, a Bose audio system, and the range-topping engine that’s good for 175 horsepower. What might be even more impressive, though, is the Seltos starting point of around $22,000.

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Volkswagen Passat - Driven

Volkswagen Passat - Driven

Did this aging sedan need more significant updates?

Sometimes, a car needs a full redesign to address a fundamental flaw. Perhaps it’s too small, or too big. Maybe its styling is stale or unappealing. Or perhaps its platform can’t support modern needs.

The 2020 Passat has revised interior and exterior styling, more standard features, and an updated engine. That’s a cheaper set of changes than a full redesign, and Volkswagen is passing those savings on to the customer. Is that enough to excuse the Passat’s old bones? Or are you better off opting for a fresher competitor? Here’s what we learned from our time behind the wheel.

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