Compared to many of today’s ultra-premium super-SUVs the Grand Cherokee SRT’s 475-hp Hemi V8 seems a bit tame, but it hits 100km/h in 5 seconds, pulls amazing Gs through corners, shifts its 8-speed…

2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT Road Test Review

Since when did 475 horsepower and 470 lb-ft of torque merely become adequate in a performance SUV?

I remember when Jeep first added the Street and Racing Technology "SRT" initials to its flagship Grand Cherokee in 2006, that model's 420 horsepower 6.1-litre Hemi V8 enough to shame the super-SUVs of the era, including BMW's X5 4.8si, Mercedes-Benz' ML55 AMG, Porsche's Cayenne Turbo, and what was then the entirely new Land Rover Sport Supercharged. Now even the weakest of these four puts more asphalt churning thrust through its four wheels than the comparatively docile Jeep, the comparatively lightweight aluminum-bodied Range Rover Sport SVR kicking out 550 horsepower and 502 pound-feet of torque, whereas the next most powerful X5 M makes 567 horsepower and 553 lb-ft of torque, the Cayenne Turbo S produces 570 horsepower and 590 lb-ft of torque, and the new Mercedes-Benz GLE AMG 63 creates 577 horsepower and 560 lb-ft of torque, while the previously unfathomed Tesla Model X P90D Read Full Story
Is this the best compact car ever made? Honda’s new 2016 Civic is a step above all rivals with best possible safety ratings and premium-like features in top-line Touring trim such as a 174-hp turbo-four,…

2016 Honda Civic Sedan Touring Road Test Review

Has the new Civic caught your attention yet? It certainly doesn't fly under the radar like previous generations, the latest redesign making a high-tech visual statement that definitely carries over to the interior when optioned out in top-line Touring trim.

That's the way Honda provided my latest Civic Sedan tester, but before we jump inside I should point out this particular model's full low and high beam LED headlamps and LED front turn signals, the combination arguably more jewel-like than the more upscale Acura ILX's distinctive lighting clusters. Together with chrome surrounding trim that seems to seamlessly meld into the bold brightwork grille they glitter in sunlight like brilliant cut diamonds, a fitting analogy considering it'll require the better part of a reasonably respectable engagement ring to ante up for this near premium compact.

The base Civic Sedan DX starts at a very approachable $15,990 plus freight and dealer fees, whereas this Touring will need Read Full Story
Practical is good when it comes to compact SUVs, but why not add a little pampering and lots of fun to the equation? That’s what Subaru did with its latest Forester 2.0XT, complete with a 250-hp turbo…

2016 Subaru Forester 2.0XT Touring Road Test Review

Are you bored with your car? I could recommend the legendary Subaru WRX that has the ability to turn any mundane commute into a memory you'll never forget, but that may not suit your family's requirements. This is why Subaru builds the Forester 2.0XT, a WRX for regular folks.

The Forester has been a compact SUV staple since it arrived here in 1998, and along with the entire crossover sector has experienced increased Canadian sales almost year over year with its annual numbers more than tripling over the past decade alone. Ditto for the Subaru brand that's grown at almost the same rate. Look over at some of its key rivals and you'll see a different picture however, the majority showing a much more gradual upward bell curve and others with a trajectory pointing in the opposite direction.

Why is Subaru doing so well? First and foremost the Japanese brand enjoys some of the best customer loyalty in the industry, so they don't experience the same level of attrition as most Read Full Story
Sweden and Canada have a lot in common, long, cold winter nights and a penchant for Ikea and H&M most notable, but we’ve also been known to purchase our fair share of Volvos. Therefore Volvo has given…

2016 Volvo S60 T5 AWD SE Premier Road Test Review

There are temporary trends and then there's just plain, good design, the former fleeting and the latter lasting over time. I categorize Volvo into the more enduring aesthetic, its cars appealing to those who prefer minimalist modernism to showy glitz and glamour.

Just look at the S60 before you. Its lines are simple, clean and elegant. It's sporty without question, but in a healthy, athletic way, devoid of the muscled up, testosterone induced ego on wheels sensationalism that some other automakers layer on thick in order to vie for attention. This is a car that exudes confidence, but in a quiet, purposeful way; swaggering strut not included.

Of course, open its substantive driver-side door, lower yourself into the S60's handsome cabin, and take grip of its thick leather-wrapped sport-shaped steering wheel, paddle shifters at your fingertips, and you'll soon realize the S60 is endowed with considerable swagger of its own. It meets all premium level attributes, with fabric-wrapped Read Full Story
After best-ever sales last year Toyota’s RAV4 is the 2nd top selling compact SUV in Canada, while just 3 months into 2016 it’s number 1! What are you missing? A major refresh has increased interest,…

2016 Toyota RAV4 LE AWD Road Test Review

As a journalist, I've always wondered how someone can cross over to the "dark" side of automaker public relations, or worse, politics. Let's remember that both Pamela Wallin and Mike Duffy (who I need to clearly state has been totally exonerated after a very long and thorough trial) were journalists before they entered politics, the latter ironically "exposing" politicians as the Ottawa editor for CTV News Channel and the former laughably finishing her journalism career off as host of the Canadian version of "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?" It appears she at least wanted to travel like one… but let's get back to the automotive side of politics, shall we? If I ever found myself writing spin for an auto brand or on stage talking up the merits of a new model (and to be transparent I've been offered PR positions before) I think I'd like to work for Toyota, as there's very little need for spin when it comes to its products and therefore one's integrity could be kept intact.

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At almost 3 tons the Yukon Denali needs all 420-hp from its 6.2L V8, but rest assured it’s plenty quick and even more luxurious. Standard kit in this $77k SUV includes an 8-speed auto, HID headlamps,…

2016 GMC Yukon Denali 4WD Road Test Review

GMC is on a bit of a roll lately. OK, that's an understatement. While last year's U.S. sales were the best in more than a decade, its Canadian numbers were better than at any time in recent memory (we could only find records going back to 2002). What's more, General Motors' truck and SUV division is by far more popular in Canada than it is in the States, at least per capita.

U.S. sales were 558,697 during calendar year 2015, while Canadians purchased 85,757 GMC models, the full-size Sierra pickup truck line by far the most popular with 53,727 deliveries, followed by the Terrain with 10,844, Savana with 6,809, Acadia with 6,452, Canyon with 4,635, and this Yukon finding 1,711 regular wheelbase buyers plus 1,579 long-wheelbase XL customers. At a glance the Yukon's sales don't look all that significant compared to some of the others in GMC's lineup, but we first need to factor in the model's combined short- and long-wheelbase totals that resulted in 3,290 units last year, and then Read Full Story
Subaru’s always done things differently, which is why its compact Crosstrek CUV stands out from a crowd. It’s more car than SUV, and therefore delivers better than average performance along with off-road…

2016 Subaru Crosstrek Sport Road Test Review

Every now and again a crossover comes along that's really quite brilliant. In this case we should expect as much from Subaru, one of if not the original crossover utility creator.

Certainly there were car/SUV combinations before Subaru disrupted the status quo, the short-lived Willys-Overland Jeepster from the last mid-century coming immediately to mind, plus of course AMC's Eagle that arrived in the late '70s and sold throughout most of the '80s. Subaru's GL AWD Wagon, which also hit the market in 1979, is even more notable because it was the springboard of a corporate identity that would soon lead to the wonderfully wacky Brat, probably the only compact car-based pickup to ever find success, and eventually the '94 Outback that's now legend for launching the modern-day crossover era.

Crossovers have shown up in all shapes and sizes since then, all of which, like the Outback, are based on unibody car platform architectures, albeit most doing their best to imitate 4x4-capable Read Full Story
The new Prius is more stylish, quicker, better handling, more fuel efficient, larger, roomier, better equipped and more advanced with an optional L-ion battery, so what’s not to like? Read about this…

2016 Toyota Prius Technology Road Test Review

If you're a fan of the unorthodox or simply want one of the best-built cars on the road that just happens to pass by more fuel pumps than anything not purely electric, the new Prius is for you.

The countless Prius taxi cabs with insanely high mileage clearly attest to the car's dependable build quality whereas its unusual new styling certainly speaks loudly for itself, as does 4.4 L/100km city, 4.6 highway and 4.5 combined. The only thing left is deciding how you want to option it out.

The Prius before you is top of the line, kind of. If you attempt to "build" one via Toyota Canada's online configurator you'll initially see the Prius Touring as the priciest model with a suggested window sticker of $29,330 plus freight and dealer fees compared to this Technology which starts at $28,730 (the base model starts at $25,995 plus freight and dealer fees), and the price difference visually makes sense as it boasts a sharp looking set of angular fog lamps, larger 17-inch five-spoke Read Full Story