Nissan has become an exciting brand with stylish new designs and impressive value that’s pulling more new buyers into their dealer showrooms. New for 2016, the totally redesigned Maxima hits the street…

2016 Nissan Maxima SR Road Test Review

Automakers don't make cars like the Maxima to make money, or at least not much. Such exercises are more about building brand image, and to that end Nissan's all-new flagship sport-luxury sedan is a serious head-turner that will cause many to sit up and take notice of a Japanese brand that's going through a styling metamorphosis as of late.

We started seeing the new Nissan when the current second-generation Rogue appeared in 2013, but even that couldn't have prepared us for the third-generation Murano that rewrote CUV styling the following year, the eighth-gen Maxima layering this wonderfully unusual new high-tech look onto the sleek shape of a four-door coupe.

Nissan might have issue with me using the four-door coupe terminology to describe its latest 4DSC, but as it is I have issue with that cute alphanumeric abbreviation for four-door sports car. The Maxima certainly looks sporty enough, but it's a bit of a literal stretch to consider something that's front-wheel Read Full Story
As if a great looking performance-oriented compact with a near luxury interior wasn’t enough, its details including 18-inch alloys, a sport suspension, proximity access, pushbutton start, a 12-way powered…

2016 Volkswagen Golf 5 Door 1.8 TSI Highline Road Test Review

It's hardly news that Volkswagen had a tough year, or rather a rough final quarter of 2015. Despite what might appear like doom and gloom when reported on 24-hour news channels, and they're likely not through the worst of it, there are some positives to build on. One is the recently redesigned Golf, which saw the strongest sales growth of any top-25 seller last year at 68.4 percent, rising to the eighth most popular car in Canada which is very close to the sixth bestselling Jetta, albeit that latter model has fallen in popularity by -10.7 percent.

I'm willing to bet this new Golf is one of the reasons why the Jetta's sales have slowed. It's normal for brand loyalists to swap between models, the latest and greatest most often getting the lion's share of attention, and so it is with the Golf that was redesigned for the 2015 model year and therefore mostly unchanged for 2016. I covered it in 5 Door Highline trim, 5 Door TDI Highline trim (a collective sigh for the TDI) and as the Read Full Story
Honda had a very good 2015, and a big part of its success was the new HR-V subcompact SUV. We reviewed it last year in lower end 2WD LX trim but today we bring you a fully loaded AWD EX-L Navi model that…

2016 Honda HR-V AWD EX-L Navi Road Test Review

Not bad for its first year, or rather its first seven months. The Honda HR-V has only been with us since June of last year, but it's already claimed first position in Canadian subcompact SUV sales at nearly 9,000 units.

It's not exactly a small market segment either. In fact it's been growing at a shocking rate, with 17,963 new sales last year alone. Yes, Canadian subcompact SUV sales grew from 26,469 units in calendar year 2014 to 44,432 in 2015, which represents a 67.8 percent gain.

You'd think with so much growth there'd be no losers, but not so. The newest entries in this class were responsible for much of the increase, the HR-V more specifically adding 8,959 units to the tally alone, and while Chevy's Trax remained a leader with 8,156 deliveries its sales actually fell by 377 units. The HR-V was joined by three other newbies arriving during the 2015 calendar year, the next most successful being the Mazda CX-3 that accumulated 6,861 sales since it arrived in May Read Full Story
The Nissan Versa Note was one of Canada’s top selling subcompacts last year, with styling, comfort, fuel economy and value being big reasons it’s done so well. Today on CarCostCanada we test top-line…

2016 Nissan Versa Note SL Road Test Review

Nissan has a thing about offering the least expensive car in Canada. Right now it's the Micra, a sub-$10k hatchback that not only looks good but also is brilliant fun to drive with its base manual gearbox. Before that, however, Canada's cheapest new car buy was the Versa sedan, a good, reliable and roomy subcompact that could have been the poster car for the word dull. Nissan has come a long way with its small car style since then, the new Versa Note an altogether more appealing car.

The Versa Note effectively replaced the Versa Hatchback that was discontinued after the 2012 model year, although it didn't arrive until later in 2013 as a 2014 model, the aforementioned Versa four-door having soldiering on to fill the gap. Despite being on the road for two years and now moving into its third model year the Note is still one of the better looking subcompact hatchbacks in Canada's marketplace, my SL tester just a little bit nicer than average.

It gets an attractive grey-painted Read Full Story
Before you spend too much for a premium branded CUV check out the latest Kia Sorento in top-line SX trim. For just over $42k you get a stylish midsize SUV with a 240-hp turbo four, AWD, stainless undertrays,…

2016 Kia Sorento SX T-GDI AWD Road Test Review

You know how some companies just have a thing for good design? Apple has long been noted for its style leadership, as has Jawbone, Bang & Olufsen, Dyson, Braun, and the list goes on. We can now add Kia to this list, but to be perfectly candid with respect to this South Korean brand, style wasn't an inherent trait. A look back to some of their previous models is all that's needed to remind anyone of that fact, although the Sorento has been one of their more appealing products since it arrived in 2003.

I dubbed the 2003 Sorento "great looking" in a review that followed its Canadian launch program, and even recommended it to my brother and his wife who purchased a fully loaded one and enjoyed it for more than a decade without problem. After testing the second-generation 2011 model I called it an "extremely stylish design." True, not my most creative literary work in either case, but at least straight to the point and notably positive. My notes for this all-new third-generation Read Full Story