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2013 Porsche Cayenne Diesel Review

Friday February 8th, 2013 at 8:22 AM
Posted by: D.Colman

By David Colman

Hypes: Torquemeister, Impeccable Interior Appointments
Gripes: Slight Vibration at Idle

When the term SUV was coined back in the late 80s to describe the Ford Explorer and its imitators, the word “sports” in the descriptor ‘sports utility vehicle’ referred to the amount of sports gear your utility vehicle could transport. It certainly didn’t mean that your SUV was sporting to drive.

But all that changed when BMW debuted the X5, followed by Porsche’s introduction of the Cayenne. These SUVs put a premium on driving enjoyment rather than pack mule capacity. Porsche has been refining the Cayenne for almost a decade now, and the latest diesel-powered offering is a testament to just how much they’ve improved the breed.

This is a heavy duty truck, with a towing capacity of 7,700 pounds. It’s also capable of traversing just about any wilderness trail, thanks to full time all wheel drive, air-adjustable ride height, and locking front and center differentials. Yet on paved roads, the Cayenne diesel behaves much like any Porsche sports car, with an agility and responsiveness that belie its curb weight of 4,700 pounds.

Under the hood lies a 3.0 liter, turbocharged, V-6 diesel that makes just 240hp. While that horsepower rating seems low compared to available gasoline fueled Cayennes — which range from 300hp (3.6 liter V-6) to 500hp (4.8 liter twin turbo V-8) — the diesel’s immediate torque output of 406 lb.-ft. elevates it above the rest of the model line for sheer grunt. When you swing wide to pass slower traffic, the diesel’s torque produces an instant surge that is unmatched by any other Cayenne. It’s exactly the kind of thrust you’re going to need when towing a travel trailer over the Sierras.

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2011 Ford F- 250 Super Duty Diesel Review

Thursday May 26th, 2011 at 9:55 AM
Posted by: D.Colman

2011 Ford F-250 Super Duty
By contributing editor David Colman

Pros:

  • Enough torque from the diesel-powered dinosaur to move mountains
  • Super comfy interior

Cons:

  • 8 grand extra for the diesel engine option
  • No 4-wheel-drive

There are still a few escapees from the LaBrea Tar Pits roaming our highways, and this brutal Ford is one of them. At over 20 feet long, and 7 feet high, this F-250’s skeleton ought to be on display at the Museum of Natural History. Joking aside, though, if you plan to tow a big boat or mobile home, the Super Duty Diesel is just exactly what you need. The F-250, with a minimum tow rating of 11,800 pounds, will rise to meet any occasion, especially if you equip it with the new 6.7 liter Turbo V8 Diesel, which produces an amazing 735 lb-ft of torque at just 1,600 RPM. With that much grunt on hand so low in the RPM spectrum, you need to take extra care not to spin the rear wheels, especially when the eight foot cargo bed is empty. In fact, the F-250 really needs 4-wheel drive to maintain traction in damp conditions, because it’s way too easy to get this rig sideways in the wet in rear wheel drive.

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40 MPG Cars – Affordable and Fuel Efficient

Tuesday March 29th, 2011 at 12:33 PM
Posted by: aquadog

2011 Chevy CruzeWith fuel prices continually rising, 40+ mpg cars are looking like a great option for consumers who can’t afford or don’t want hybrid technology. Without breaking the bank, these affordable fuel efficient cars range from $15,000 to about $20,000 and all provide 40 mpg or more highway mpg driving. Companies that have joined the 40-mpg club are Ford, Honda, Kia, Mazda, Hyundai, Chevrolet, and Smart.

Automakers are achieving the 40 mpg mark by using lighter-weight materials, modern gasoline powered engines with direct injection and six-speed automatic transmissions along with additional fuel-saving technologies such as low-rolling-resistance tires.

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Posted in Audi, Chevrolet, Feature Articles, Ford, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Mazda, Press and News, Volkswagen |Tags:, , , , , , , , , , , , || 4 Comments »


2013 Chevrolet Cruze Goes Diesel for North America

Tuesday February 22nd, 2011 at 9:22 AM
Posted by: aquadog

2011 Chevrolet CruzeNews has emerged that the 2013 Chevrolet Cruze will be available as a diesel engine option for the North American market, with sales expected to begin sometime in 2012. GM Inside News sources at the Lordstown, Ohio assembly, where the Chevy Cruze is produced, are said to have confirmed they will start building a diesel model for the 2013 model year. The Chevrolet Cruze is a popular car that is sold in over 60 countries worldwide in gasoline and diesel engine models and was just recently launched in the North America market. With Americans becoming more interested in fuel efficiency and smaller sized cars, the diesel powered Cruze could be a step in the right direction.

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Posted in Chevrolet, Press and News |Tags:, , , || 2 Comments »


MINI Cooper SD Diesel for the European Market – The U.S. Can Only Dream

Tuesday February 8th, 2011 at 9:22 AM
Posted by: aquadog

Mini Cooper SDMINI has announced the MINI Cooper SD, a diesel version of their popular S performance model, which will debut at the Geneva Motor Show in March.

The MINI Cooper SD will include a diesel particulate filter and an oxidation catalytic converter for cleaner emissions and will offer the best performance and economy of the line. The new MINI Cooper SD also features a 2.0-liter turbo diesel, four-cylinder, 143-horsepower engine, a six-speed manual with an optional six-speed automatic transmission, Brake Energy Regeneration, Auto Start/Stop, Shift Point Display, and Electric Power Steering.

Will this fuel efficient, cleaner emissions car come to the U.S.? MINI has yet to make a final decision on a diesel-powered model for the U.S.  So for now, we can only dream.

Video and photos after the jump

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Posted in MINI, Press and News |Tags:, , || 1 Comment »


2010 Volkswagen Jetta TDI Cup Edition Review – V-dub's cup runneth over

Wednesday October 20th, 2010 at 2:1010 PM
Posted by: Derek

By Derek Mau

Props to Volkswagen for trying to inject some fun into a family sedan that would otherwise be more associated with the sober, button-down demeanor of a desk-jockey commuter locked into a 9 -5 job with no hope for advancement beyond his cubicle walls with the neutral tone fabric. Take one tidy sedan powered by a very frugal turbo-diesel and DSG gearbox, dial-in the suspension from the more sporty GLI, dress it up with an aero kit and a shiny set of 18 inch alloy wheels, and the excitement dial gets turned up a couple of notches. Just how exciting is the Jetta TDI Cup Edition? I take the  working man’s coach to Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey and push it through the turns to find out if getting 40 mpg and having fun at the same time is possible.

The engine remains standard: It’s VW’s 140-horsepower turbocharged 2.0-liter TDI clean diesel four, mated to either a six-speed manual or the undeniably high-tech six-speed direct-shift gearbox automatic. No powertrain changes between the standard Jetta TDI and the Jetta TDI Cup Edition, but it does get a bigger set of binders in addition to the performance mods mentioned above.

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


2010 BMW 335d Review – Clean and efficient MPG in the ultimate driving package

Friday June 25th, 2010 at 1:66 PM
Posted by: anson

2010 BMW 335d sedan

>>> Review by Anson Tse | >>> Photographs by Derek Mau

Pros

  • Loads of torque
  • Fantastic handling
  • Clean emissions and great fuel economy

Cons

  • Powertrain lacks responsiveness expected from a BMW
  • It’s just too expensive

The Ultimate Driving Machine. That’s BMW’s tagline that they use to describe the vehicles they make. Clearly this reputation has been well earned over the years and the 3-series always finds itself square in the cross hairs of its competitors. The 335i is a magnificent sport sedan with a very potent twin-turbocharged gasoline powered inline 6.  So what happens when the boys from Bavaria shoe horn a diesel powered twin-turbo 6 cylinder underneath the hood? No black smoke from this one, just a stump pulling 425 pound-feet worth of torque, more than enough to turn those rear tires into piles of molten rubber.

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Posted in BMW, Expert Reviews |Tags:, , , || 6 Comments »


2010 Audi A3 TDI Coming To America

Tuesday September 8th, 2009 at 7:99 AM
Posted by: tonyb

Audi A3 TDI

More news on the diesel front: Audi has finally decided to bring a diesel variant of its very popular A3 to America as a 2010 model. The A3, which is sort of the car that people buy when they want more than a Volkswagen and less than a bigger Audi, has been intensely popular. Small and compact enough for urban duty, yet able to travel long distances with ease put the car on a spectrum of car buyers’ short lists.

The only thing missing, for the American market, has been a diesel option. The oil burners have been available since the get go in Europe, where diesel is a popular fuel choice, but Audi has been reluctant to bring any of their diesels to North America. This has been something of a downer for those that want an Audi and are either the frugal type, or more green conscious, but now that’s all set to change.

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Polo Three-Door Diesel Gets 71 mpg

Monday September 7th, 2009 at 8:99 AM
Posted by: tonyb

VW Polo

More news from the upcoming Frankfurt Auto Show about the bound for the United States Polo from Volkswagen. The Polo, or some version of it, has been around Europe for quite some time. VW never brought it to North America because they felt it was “too small” for us. That might have been true, but times have changed and so has the Polo. The upcoming version is now about the size of the Golf from a few generations ago, and VW is supposedly bringing it to U.S.

Which is good on a number of levels. It should be small, tossable, fun to drive and economical to operate. It could also fill a nice niche for first time car buyers, and for those that use their car primarily for commuting or city driving, the Polo seems like a natural. And if VW is smart enough to bring the TDi diesel variant here, the gas mileage looks to be stunning.

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Posted in Press and News, Volkswagen |Tags:, , , , , || 2 Comments »


New VW Golf Plus BlueMotion Diesel Gets 55 MPG

Monday August 24th, 2009 at 8:88 AM
Posted by: tonyb

VW Golf BlueMotion

Wait, did I read that right? Nearly fifty-five miles per gallon? Shoot, that’s impressive. The new, and hopefully coming to America soon VW Golf Plus BlueMotion Diesel gets 54.7 miles per gallon. An astounding, and very useful number to be sure. And with as well screwed together a ride as a VW Golf is, and with all the nifty comfort and convenience features it has, this could turn into one helluva great commuter car. Or a road trip car for that matter. With those kinds of MPG figures, you could probably make it from Los Angeles to Las Vegas on one tank (as an example).

Now, do bare in mind that this is the European model (the British model, actually), and at the moment there are no firm plans to bring the car here, but c’mon VW, you’d be dumb not to. As it sits in the U.K., prices start at £17,570 for the Golf Plus BlueMotion S, and go all the way up to £18,920 for the SE, which is the equivalent of $28,841.86 to $31,057.94. No, not cheap, but then again, those prices also figure in British taxes and such like.

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Posted in Press and News, Volkswagen |Tags:, || 2 Comments »


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