Just because the Discovery Sport is Land Rover’s entry-level model and one of the lowest priced compact luxury SUVs in Canada, don’t expect it to be common. Along with plenty of eye-catching style,…

2018 Land Rover Discovery Sport HSE Road Test

With a base price of just $43,500 plus freight and fees the 2018 Discovery Sport is Land Rover's entry-level SUV, not to mention one of the most affordable luxury sport utilities available in Canada.

On the flip side it's the compact luxury SUV segment's most accommodating offering, thanks to a spacious interior with up to three rows of seats for a maximum of seven occupants, while all of its rivals seat just five. What's more, with 981 litres (34.6 cubic feet) of cargo capacity behind its rear seatbacks the Discovery Sport is best in class (by a long shot) for hauling gear. That second row is divided in the usual 60/40 configuration, but unlike many in this class a large centre pass-through creates a 40/20/40-split that's ideal for loading longer items like skis down the middle while those in back enjoy greater comfort from the outboard seats.

With 947 millimetres (37.3 inches) of second-row legroom the Discovery Sport is also one of the more comfortable for rear passengers, Read Full Story
The 7-passenger Pathfinder SUV was updated last year with fresh new styling, more power and better handling, but that didn’t stop Nissan from adding new standard safety features for 2018. Check out…

2018 Nissan Pathfinder Platinum 4×4 Road Test

Nissan gave its mid-size seven-passenger Pathfinder a mid-cycle update last year, giving it more of a traditional SUV design, increasing power and sharpening up its driving dynamics to good effect. The result has been positive, with 1.7 percent more Canadians choosing it over a competitor in calendar year 2017 than during 2016.

While any growth is good, it was rare for any SUV to lose ground last year. In fact, the Pathfinder's 2017 results weren't even as good as its 2015 total of 9,898 units, while its archrival Toyota Highlander grew its sales from 10,412 units in 2015 to 12,964 in 2016 for an increase of 24.5 percent, and finally 15,259 deliveries in 2017 for growth of 17.7 percent, after it also received a mid-cycle remake-the two ran a dead heat back in 2014.

Other three-row competitors that grew their 2017 sales include the best-selling Ford Explorer that went from 15,275 units to 17,333 for a 13.5 percent gain despite no changes until year end, the Kia Sorento Read Full Story
Jaguar’s F-Type sports car needs no introduction, but you may not realize this 2018 model has gone through a much more comprehensive mid-cycle makeover than mere appearances suggest. Along with subtle…

2018 Jaguar F-Type R Coupe Road Test

There's no more iconic modern-day Jaguar than the F-Type. It's the heart and soul of the famed British brand, just like the sensational XK, elegant XJ-S, legendary E-Type, and revered XK150/140/120 were in decades' past. For good reason the F-Type has become one of the best-selling sports cars in the premium sector, and likewise it goes without saying that any opportunity afforded me within its cockpit is met with enthusiasm.

I was especially excited to get my hands on this 2018 model, as it represents the F-Type's first-ever mid-cycle refresh. Premium sports cars don't get made over as often as volume-branded alternatives, this being the fifth model year of its availability, so its changes were welcome even if ultimately subtle in application. Look closely and you'll see the new standard LED headlights that add a premium-level, high-tech appearance and better nighttime visibility no matter the trim, while the front bumper and lower fascia design features new air intakes with Read Full Story
We’re back in the Subaru Forester’s saddle for 2018, this time in top-line 2.0XT Limited trim that comes standard with a 250-hp turbo-four, CVT with paddles, AWD, steering-responsive LED headlights,…

2018 Subaru Forester 2.0XT Limited Road Test

Subaru's Forester has come a long way since a funky squared-off, raised wagon by the same name debuted in 1997. That model did well for the brand and helped usher in the compact crossover SUV craze, but in 2002 the hard edges were smoothed out, refinements improved the cabin, and soon after a version of the WRX STi's turbo-four was added to a new top-line XT trim that pumped up performance. The Forester grew up to true compact SUV dimensions in 2008 for the 2009 model year with the release of its third-generation, while 2013's fourth-gen model, followed by its mid-cycle upgrade last year, returned some of its edgy, chunky original design elements, albeit in a larger more upright utility.

I've just scratched the surface of the many changes that joined those updates, plus numerous modifications in between, to the point that today's Subaru is so far advanced over its predecessors it might as well be an entirely different SUV. Of course, the same can be said of many popular cars and Read Full Story
Bored of the status quo yet still want Nissan comfort and quality in a sportier small car package? Check out this Sentra Nismo. It’s everything buyers like about the larger than average compact Sentra,…

2018 Nissan Sentra Nismo Road Test

Nissan surprised me with a much more enjoyable Sentra SR Turbo last year, and then they went a step further by bringing out the Nismo.

Compared to the SR Turbo, this Nismo is a boy racer's dream, but I must admit it's a bit too youth-oriented for my almost 55 year-old mindset. I appreciated the subtleness of the metallic grey-painted SR, and that said wouldn't have minded a full white version, but the Aspen White pearl and wine-red colour scheme of this Nismo, plus all of the aero body cladding, pushed it a bit too over the top for me, especially when grafted onto a design that's not inherently sporty.

Some features that seem somewhat out of place on a sport model include the broad chrome grille surround, chromed side window trim, chromed door handles, and chromed trunk applique. Normally sport trims coat these pieces in body-colour, black or at least really dark chrome. I'm not saying Nissan was wrong to include all the metal brightwork, because there is no right and Read Full Story
If you want a much richer compact SUV experience than you’ve ever experienced before, yet price is an issue and therefore premium brands are out of the question, check out the new Mazda CX-5 GT. It…

2017 Mazda CX-5 GT AWD Road Test

The new Mazda CX-5 was the last 2017 model I tested and will be the final 2017 review I'll write. I wasn't actually sure if I was going to cover it at all, being that one of my freelance journalists did the honours earlier and his review is still available for your perusal, but nevertheless the new CX-5 impressed me so much I couldn't leave it alone.

I know I'm not alone in my accolades, with most every auto industry pundit praising its virtues. Before I delve into all that's great about the 2017, as well as its two minor disappointments, take note that the outgoing first-generation CX-5 was already a very impressive compact SUV, so therefore moving up to this second-generation model isn't a night and day experience. Yet if styling is important to you, and it is for most of us when it comes to our cars, this 2017 CX-5 is a big step forward.

Again, there was nothing wrong with the previous 2016 model's design, other than five years of continual availability combined with Read Full Story
The subcompact SUV class is one of the industry’s fastest growing vehicle segments, and Mitsubishi’s RVR was one of the first to stake it out. Despite a 7-year-plus product run that’s only included…

2017 Mitsubishi RVR 2.4 SE AWC Black Edition Road Test

Honestly, I'm not a big fan of the latest trend toward special blacked out versions of new cars and SUVs, at least not normally. Fortunately, Mitsubishi didn't go so far as to darken the new RVR SE AWC Black Edition's signature chrome detailing up front, and left its tailpipe finisher and various emblems in bright metal as well. Instead, this Black Edition gets an all-black exterior paint treatment, the usual matte black lower body cladding, a sweet looking set of glossy black painted 18-inch multi-spoke alloys, and similarly shiny black roof rails. That, and all its protruding trim bits (a.k.a. mirror caps, door handles, rooftop antenna, and rear spoiler) painted body colour as well, and it's a wrap, figuratively and literally.

Mitsubishi wouldn't have needed to go to great measures in order to make the interior all black too, but instead followed the usual sporting theme by adding plenty of red highlights, including stitching inside the top half of the leather-wrapped steering Read Full Story
Say goodbye to the Hyundai Genesis Sedan and hello to the all-new (ahem) Genesis G80! Ok enough of the fanfare, the 2017 G80 is little more than a rebadged Hyundai Genesis, but it’s still one fine automobile.…

2017 Genesis G80 5.0 AWD Ultimate Road Test

New year predictions anyone? I've got one. The new Genesis luxury brand will do very well.

I've realized this for some time. Ever since testing the second-generation 2015 Genesis Sedan in the fall of 2014 I knew it would find favour amongst a select group of upwardly mobile luxury buyers, and like many of my auto pundit colleagues I've been proved correct. That car wore Hyundai's stylized "H" on its rear deck lid with a "GENESIS" insignia to the bottom left, the opposite side of the trunk signed "HTRAC 5.0" instead of "5.0 HTRAC" as is done with the new car. The proper name of this model was Hyundai Genesis Sedan 5.0 Ultimate, whereas this new Genesis-branded model merely drops the words "Hyundai" and "Sedan" while adding "G80" to the mix.

Yes, this is either the smoothest transition from mainstream volume-branded near-premium sport-luxury sedan to premium-branded sport-luxury sedan ever, or the most uncomfortably obvious metamorphosis possible. To the South Korean automaker's Read Full Story