Today on CarCostCanada, Trevor Hofmann reports on the return of the track-tuned Nissan 370Z Nismo for the 2015 model year. Upgrades to the entire 370Z lineup join the special Nismo model, a swansong for…

Nissan to bring track-tuned 370Z Nismo back to Canada

In a recent road test review of the 2014 Nissan 370Z Nismo by our U.S.-based correspondent Lyndon Conrad Bell, we lamented that the special track-tuned model is no longer available in Canada. While this is indeed true, we were delighted to hear more recently that the updated 2015 model will be returning.

Simon Hill reported on that revised version back in May, after Nissan's U.S. division introduced it to a group of diehard enthusiasts during Zdayz at Fontana Village Resort in North Carolina, an annual tribute to the iconic Z-car and other Nissan performance cars such as the GT-R.

The 370Z Nismo, which was dropped north of the 49th at the end of the 2012 model year (Nissan Canada only carrying the 370Z Touring model for 2013 and 2014), will be added back to the Canadian lineup for 2015 as part of a mid-cycle upgrade for the Japanese brand's legendary sports car.

Compared to the old 2012 370Z Nismo and the one offered Stateside since then, the 2015 model has Read Full Story
One of the most highly anticipated new crossover utilities to come around in years, Porsche’s 2015 Macan is here and Trevor Hofmann reviews it in both base S and top-line Turbo trims. Is it a real Porsche…

2015 Porsche Macan Road Test Review

If there ever was a no-brainer in the auto business, the Macan is it. After all, Porsche has been spicing up premium lifestyles with the mid-size Cayenne for a dozen years, so why not do the same with something smaller and potentially sportier in the compact segment?

We've known about the Macan for a long time, although when it started to appear in production trim we realized the spicy Cajun moniker we'd been reporting on was just a codename, and that Porsche wouldn't be moving forward with a complete gastronomic theme but instead name its smallest crossover and most affordable new model after the Indonesian word for tiger. And why not? The Asian markets are overflowing with new wealth and therefore prime for an entry-level Porsche, and tigers are much more beautiful to watch at full run than rhinorrhea after eating plants containing capsaicin and allyl isothiocyanate that exacerbate the mucous membrane.

Before I delve too far into this review, let it be known that Read Full Story
With the 2014 Outlander, Mitsubishi has completely rethought design and execution in the compact crossover SUV class. Now larger, more conservatively penned, more refined inside, and featuring more features,…

2014 Mitsubishi Outlander V6 Road Test Review

The completely restyled 2014 Mitsubishi Outlander got a jump on its competitors by being released mid last year, and sales figures show the crossover has enjoyed its highest popularity in seven years. A more conservative but attractive exterior as well as extensive tech and safety features have no doubt contributed to the success, but an underpowered six-cylinder and bland interior somewhat hold the mid-size crossover back.

I got an opportunity to drive the Outlander when it was first launched on our shores in June and was glad to see the trapezoidal front end replaced by a subtle grille, integrated into widened and squared off headlights with a more standard separated bumper intake underneath. The sides of the car have been both smoothed and sharpened to help it cut through wind-resistance to the tune of a seven-percent reduction in drag, says Mitsubishi. In the back, the tri-diamond manufacturer has brought back the clear and red taillight housings popularized by the Toyota Read Full Story
Do you want a new McLaren P1 GTR? Right now it’s only in prototype trim, but a production version available for conditional sale will debut soon. Ahead of this, McLaren plans to display the concept…

McLaren unveils P1 GTR Concept online ahead of Pebble Beach reveal

The McLaren P1 GTR makes absolutely perfect sense. After all, why wouldn't a supercar brand that's spent the vast majority of its 50-plus years producing racing cars want to turn its pride and joy road car into a track-dominating force to be reckoned with (especially considering that its current MP4-29 Formula 1 car isn't exactly making headlines for the right reasons).

McLaren, which only delved into the road car business briefly from 1992 to 1998 with the much-lauded and aptly named F1, a three-seat supercar with a mid-mounted 627-horsepower BMW-sourced 6.1-litre 60-degree V12, before more recently creating a serious Ferrari 458 Italia and Lamborghini Gallardo/Huracán contender with the 2011 to 2014 12C (A.K.A. MP4-12C), followed up by the 2013 to 2014 P1, and brand new 2014 650S, appears to once again be taking up road car racing just like it did with the old F1 in the mid-'90s (they won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1995). Could they win their class in Le Mans again? Read Full Story
The Cayenne is Porsche’s bread and butter model, the profit of which helps to fund the automaker’s ever-diversifying sports car range. Therefore even the brand’s 911 loyalists should celebrate a…

Porsche adds plug-in hybrid to Cayenne lineup for 2015

A decade or so ago most of us thought the sport utility vehicle was a thing of the past, but creation of car-based crossover utility vehicles, or CUVs, have kept our love affair with the SUV alive despite an overall rise in the cost of living that has included ever-increasing fuel costs.

Of course, these last problems haven't affected the premium sector quite as harshly, where all types of luxury utes are selling very well. On that note Porsche has enjoyed tremendous success with its mid-size Cayenne, having sold nearly 580,000 examples since it debuted in 2002 (more than 276,000 first-generation models were produced between 2002 and 2010, and about 303,000 units of the second-gen model since 2010), and now 12 years later will introduce yet another spin on its spicy SUV theme.

For model year 2015, along with the entry-level Cayenne Diesel, mid-grade Cayenne S and top-line Cayenne Turbo, the Stuttgart, Germany-based brand will add a new plug-in hybrid model dubbed Cayenne Read Full Story
Style, luxury, refinement and superb fuel efficiency in a family-friendly seven-occupant package? That’s the 2014 Toyota Highlander Hybrid in top-tier Limited trim. Today, Trevor Hofmann reviews the…

2014 Toyota Highlander Hybrid Limited Road Test Review

The critics spoke (me included) and Toyota listened. The result is a much improved product line, starting with small cars like the Yaris and new Corolla, and capped off with large models like the Avalon and brand new Highlander.

Nobody questions whether or not Toyota builds good vehicles. The Corolla and Camry aren't best sellers because they don't compete in their market segments. Truth be told, they compete very well, delivering a level of quality and reliability few rivals have been able to match. Toyota has been correctly criticized for lacklustre styling and so-so interior refinement, however, but they've now addressed these problems to the point that nobody will be talking negatively about their new models, especially the 2014 Highlander.

I recently drove a conventionally powered Highlander in base trim and was amazed at how well executed the interior was. My review started with, "This is a base model? Shocking!" Of course, the much more upscale Highlander Hybrid Read Full Story
Today’s muscle cars make the machines of decades’ past seem downright conservative, with the all-new 2015 Challenger SRT Hellcat being the most exciting four-seat super coupe to debut from a mainstream…

Dodge prices 2015 Challenger SRT Hellcat at $63,995

A pony car or a muscle car? The 2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat easily qualifies for the latter thanks to supercharged 6.2-litre V8 that makes a shocking 707 horsepower and 650 lb-ft of torque! Or maybe the term "supercar" fits the description more accurately.

Years ago performance car enthusiasts would've needed to pay a tuning specialist tens of thousands for an engine that could muster such performance, let alone a car that could handle such output from zero to highway speeds and back down to standstill again, but now all of this can be yours straight from the factory with a warranty no less. And the best news? A brand new 2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat will only set you back a mere $63,995 plus freight in Canada.

This puts Dodge's new muscle car in the same ballpark as the 662-horsepower 2014 Mustang Shelby GT500, which currently can be had for $61,699, plus freight. Chevy's answer to this horsepower war is the $54,775 2014 Camaro ZL1, although at "only" 580 Read Full Story
If you need something to pull the boat and camp trailer but don’t want to forgo the comforts you’ve grown accustomed to in your luxury car, a premium SUV might be right up your alley. Today, Trevor…

2014 Infiniti QX80 Road Test Review

When Infiniti launched the totally new QX56 at the New York International Auto Show in March of 2010, I didn't know quite what to think. Was it the ugliest SUV I'd ever seen or absolutely brilliant? Like some other designs (BMW's first-generation Z4 comes to mind), the big QX has grown on me over the years. Now it's my absolute favourite SUV, even eclipsing my previous favourite, the Land Rover LR4.

The model I drove recently is no longer named QX56, but rather has been rechristened QX80 for 2014 as a result of Infiniti's revised naming scheme. I don't think fans of the big ute will care, as it's the exact same vehicle from bow to stern. And while the name is new, the QX really didn't need any changes to keep it competitive. Infiniti gave its largest model a mid-cycle upgrade two years ago for the 2013 model year, complete with the Essence Concept-sourced grille that has since been made more popular on the new Q50 sport sedan and prior to the QX was added to other models in the Read Full Story