2009 Volkswagen Routan Review – A Cross-Cultural Minivan

Friday September 25th, 2009 at 1:99 PM
Posted by: Francois

By Francis Cebedo

Blings:

  • The exterior, though simple is quite attractive.
  • The interior dashboard is simple and elegant
  • Seats are excellent, especially the 2nd row seats
  • Handling and ride quality are good and an improvement over its Chrysler cousins
  • Good power and fuel economy

Dings:

  • All the knobs and electronics are Chrysler quality and not up to VW standards
  • Chrysler’s “stow and go” and “swivel and go” seating options are not available
  • Sliding doors are a bit noisy when opening and closing.
  • There are odd, as in huge storage compartments found in the floor and on the ceiling of the Routan
  • It doesn’t differentiate itself enough from the Chrysler.
  • Pricing rebates and deals of VW will not be as aggressive as Chrysler’s
  • It was named by the same group that gave us the Phaeton and Passat

Introduction
When a family has more than two kids in this country they tend to stray away from the VW mark. Even VW loyalists are lost to the clutches of Honda, Toyota and Chrysler minivans. The convenience of the power sliding doors is alluring and the potential of transporting part of the soccer team or the extended family is inviting.

VW felt they had to offer a minivan in their line-up so they partnered with Chrysler for the task. Designing and building their own van did not support the economics and timing, so Volkswagen worked with Chrysler to create their version of the Chrysler Town and Country or Dodge Caravan.

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2009 MINI Cooper S Review

Tuesday September 8th, 2009 at 1:99 PM
Posted by: peter

>> Review by Peter N. >> Photographs by Derek Mau

Pros:

  • Small, zippy driving experience
  • Cool cockpit design
  • Good iPod integration
  • Low road noise

Cons:

  • Ultra-stiff suspension setup
  • Small trunk
  • No rear leg room

Introduction
I recall on one of my first trips to Europe coming across a Mini Cooper parked in the street. I was awestruck that anyone would sell, let alone buy, such a small car. We took photos of it to prove to our friends how small European cars were. It really lived up to name. This was back in the 80′s, so it was one of the “original” Mini Cooper designs. Ever since BMW re-launched the MINI Cooper line in 2000, I’ve always wanted to see how the brand that builds the ultimate driving machine would recreate an ultra-small British car. As it turns out, just about what you would expect: a small but very sporty car that is simple, but well done.

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Posted in Expert Reviews, MINI |Tags:, , || 3 Comments »


2009 Nissan Cube Review: Autobots, the Allspark has been located!

Monday August 17th, 2009 at 8:88 AM
Posted by: berrichondanny

2009 Nissan Cube
>> Review by Danny Chang | >> Photographs by Derek Mau

Pros

  • Love-it-or-hate-it looks
  • Massive headroom
  • Uncontrollable urge to pretend you’re 18

Cons

  • Love-it-or-hate-it looks
  • Failure to impress young ladies
  • Uncontrollable urge to pretend you’re 18

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2009 Volkswagen Touareg 3.0 TDI Review – $43K, 30 mpg and 406 lb. ft torque = A No-Brainer.

Tuesday July 21st, 2009 at 9:77 AM
Posted by: Kurt Gensheimer

By Kurt Gensheimer

Blings:

  • Powerful, Fuel Efficient, Clean and Quiet V6 diesel
  • Off-road prowess
  • Exceptional value
  • Safer than a nuclear fallout shelter

Dings:

  • No 3rd row seating (but this could actually be a bling depending on one’s affinity for hauling bodies)
  • Umm…that’s it, folks!

Ruling: If you want an SUV that can do everything but schlep more than five passengers, stop your search here.

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2009 Acura RL Review – Acura achieves balance once again with the RL

Monday November 3rd, 2008 at 11:1111 AM
Posted by: peter

2009 Acura RL
By Peter N.

Pros

  • Smooth, but powerful driving
  • Excellent ergonomics and practicality
  • Packed with advanced technology

Cons

  • Bland styling

Introduction
I have long been a fan of Honda’s premier brand of cars, which has delivered many cars with solid performance at attractive price points. Lately, the Acura brand has put a significant emphasis on the technology they offer, touting their ability to bring the latest advancements in luxury automotive electronics to their customers. Has Acura created the next M-Drive or is this something humans can actually use?

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2009 Volkswagen Tiguan First Impressions Review – VW goes wild with their new compact SUV

Thursday August 7th, 2008 at 3:88 PM
Posted by: Derek

2009 Volkswagen Tiguan
Review and photos by Derek Mau

Pros:

  • Comfortable ride
  • Quiet cabin
  • Zippy 2.0L 200hp engine with a generous helping of torque
  • View to the heavens with panoramic sunroof
  • Turn-by-turn directions from nav-system is audible and displayed directly in front of the driver

Cons:

  • Too much body lean with aggressive turns
  • Touch-screen for navigation and audio functions has a slow response
  • The cargo area with the second-row seats in place is too small for bicycles, camping gear and other large items
  • Missing the TDI version with better fuel economy
  • A little pricey with today’s weak dollar and strong Euro exchange rate

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2009 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen Review: Jett-ing Around in the New Wagon

Monday August 4th, 2008 at 6:88 AM
Posted by: gmchan_66

VW Jetta SportWagen Consumer Reviews VW Jetta SportWagen Overview VW Jetta SportWagen Photo Gallery VW Jetta SportWagen Specs
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Review and photos by Gary Chan

Pros

  • Steering
  • Indirect a/c cooling
  • Lots of useful storage/loading features

Cons

  • Interior noise
  • Horsepower and torque
  • Chrome section on front bumper

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Posted in Expert Reviews, Volkswagen |Tags:, , , || 1 Comment »




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