You can wait for the new 2017 Panamera if you want, but you won’t be able to get a naturally aspirated V8-powered GTS anymore. In tribute we review the sensational Panamera GTS in all its 440-hp glory,…

2016 Porsche Panamera GTS Road Test Review

With all the excitement over the upcoming 2017 Panamera, a complete redesign that will be larger and more accommodating yet no heavier than the current version, you'd think sales of the 2016 model would've dried up, but not so. In fact, sales of the now seven-season old first-gen Panamera have been strong so far this year, with buyers seemingly wanting to get hold of this modern-day V8-powered classic before it's gone.

Of course, when I say sales are strong it's a relative statement. Last year Porsche's Canadian division found 341 Panamera buyers, which was slightly down from the 375 sold in 2014, but better than the 328 deliveries in 2013, the year GTS trim was introduced. The Panamera was never intended to compete directly with most four-door luxury coupes, which include the Audi A7, BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe and Mercedes-Benz CLS, as it's priced somewhat higher, but just the same its popularity isn't far from these Teutonic rivals.

Audi (which is, like Porsche, a VW-owned Read Full Story
If you’ve got regular heavy, large loads that require protection from the elements and/or thieves the vault-like Sprinter is an ideal choice. Available in 2 weight classes, 2 wheelbases, 3 lengths,…

2016 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 3500 Cargo Van Road Test Review

We can thank Mercedes' Sprinter for the new wave of commercial vans available to businesses and RV owners, opening up a wide world of competitive options we've never enjoyed before.

Previously the North American markets only had Ford's classic E-Series, GM's Chevrolet Express and GMC Savana twins, and the Dodge Ram Van series, but when that final model was so far beyond its stale date that few fleet operators were willing to ante up any longer it forced then DaimlerChrysler to literally think outside the box, and both Dodge and Freightliner versions of the Sprinter were formed from Mercedes' well proven first-generation model. This much more spacious and extremely fuel efficient alternative did so well that Ford had to step up with an alternative to its E-Series, first complementing its short-wheelbase E-150 with the European-designed and built Transit Connect, and then adding size on top of its E trims with the considerably bigger and more directly competitive full-size Transit Read Full Story
If the need for family hauling space is pushing you out of your sports car, the slightly updated Mercedes GLA 45 AMG 4Matic might be just what you want and need. It’s a subcompact luxury SUV that’s…

2016 Mercedes-Benz GLA 45 AMG 4Matic Road Test Review

There's really nothing like the GLA on today's market. Tomorrow may be different, the new 2017 Infiniti QX30 sharing platform architectures and employing the little Merc's base powertrain, but I'm sure the Japanese-branded subcompact SUV will have as distinctive a personality as its unique styling suggests, which will once again leave the GLA within its niche.

This is especially true now that its key competitor, BMW's X1, has gone more conservative in performance and design, the latest model appearing more like a shrunken X3. There are other subcompact luxury SUVs available too, including Audi's comparatively docile Q3 and Range Rover's slightly more potent Evoque, plus some less prestigiously branded entries that are nevertheless near premium when it comes to quality, features and pricing so therefore deserve comment, including Buick's comfort-first Encore, Mini's performance-oriented Countryman, and, while tempted to throw Fiat's surprisingly upscale top-line 500X Trekking Read Full Story
Want all the space of a compact SUV plus the handling of a sport sedan? Look no further than Volvo’s sharply dressed V60. Today we review it in base T5 Drive-E guise, infused with an advanced 240-hp…

2016 Volvo V60 T5 Drive-E Road Test Review

Volvo has one of the widest arrays of models in the "Tier 2" luxury sector, which refers to all premium brands other than Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Audi, and Lexus.

Along with the entirely new S90 luxury sedan that replaces the long-in-tooth S80, and V90 sport wagon soon to enter the market, plus the recently redesigned XC90 crossover SUV that's rejuvenated the Swedish brand's sales, Volvo's current lineup includes the XC70 crossover wagon, XC60 compact SUV, S60 sport-luxury sedan, S60 Cross Country crossover four-door, V60 Cross Country crossover wagon, and V60 sport wagon. What's more, many of these get performance-tuned Polestar editions, Volvo's version of AMG, M, RS and F.

The vast majority of these models haven't received Volvo's much-lauded new styling enhancements or its revised interior design, but the V60 sport wagon being reviewed here remains a thoroughly attractive premium compact nonetheless, and plenty luxurious, while the model tested incorporates the brand's Read Full Story
The new Titan is making news for its unique 5/8ths near heavy-duty size, standard 4x4 capability, family-friendly Crew Cab body, powerful V8 with 401 lb-ft of torque and even more robust Cummins diesel…

2016 Nissan Titan XD Crew Cab Pro-4X Diesel 4×4 Road Test Review

Nissan has made an extremely bold and highly unusual move with the introduction of its completely redesigned 2016 Titan. Rather than merely flashing new styling, improving everything it can and increasing the full-size truck's dimensions like Toyota did when it brought out its most recent Tundra, Japan's number two automaker one-upped its primary rival by making its initial offering a diesel-only, heavy-duty half-ton, otherwise called a 5/8-ton or heavy-half by old-school truckers.

Gasoline-powered engines would (and will) follow, a V8 already available and a V6 on the way for 2017, plus other body styles, a regular "Single Cab" just announced, but filling a niche that isn't openly addressed by its competitors was a great way to get noticed when the updated truck hit the market last year.

Kudos to Nissan management for taking the risk, as they were smart to create some social media buzz and grab headlines with stump-pulling torque and enviable long-haul tow ratings Read Full Story
Subaru’s Impreza is hardly the newest kid on the compact block, but it’s still very competitive thanks to a new standard infotainment system along with a design that’s managed to stay fresh looking.…

2016 Subaru Impreza 5-Door Touring Road Test Review

Subaru holds a unique position within the car industry. It has maintained steadfast core values centered on reliability, practicality, safety, and environmental leadership on one hand and extreme performance on the other; it makes its trademark Symmetrical all-wheel drive system standard on almost all of its models; and it's stayed 100 percent loyal to a horizontally opposed "boxer" engine design only otherwise used by Porsche (and occasionally Ferrari) that reduces a vehicle's centre of gravity to improve handling; but strangest of all Subaru seems to limit the availability of its vehicles so that resale values remain incredibly high.

Most Subaru dealers I've spoken with say they could sell twice as many vehicles if they could get their hands on them, and on top of this most Subaru owners hold onto their cars longer than average, all contributing to strong residual values, but this also makes for niche like sales volumes.

This is especially true in Canada where, despite Read Full Story
Acura’s TLX is more popular than you might think, and for good reason. At just over $35k it’s the best deal in its class, while still boasting a sporty 206-hp 2.4L four, 8-speed dual-clutch auto with…

2016 Acura TLX SH-AWD Elite Road Test Review

Peter Gabriel's Don't Give Up sounds amazing on the 2016 TLX SH-AWD Elite's audio system, the resonant bass tone all-absorbing and Kate Bush's hauntingly beautiful chorus vocal showing its depth of quality, while the theme of the song seems fitting for Acura too.

Let's face it. While Honda's luxury brand was the first of the Japanese upstarts to arrive in North America just over 30 years ago, it hasn't exactly protracted its compass style "A" logo to cover the entire earth like its Japanese peers, having added Hong Kong in 1991, Mexico in 2004, China in 2006, Russia in 2014 and Kuwait in 2015, but it's made a more significant dent in both the Canadian and U.S. markets where it simultaneously started than Infiniti. Actually, its 2015 sales nearly doubled Infiniti's 11,321 at 21,003, and came impressively close to knocking Lexus off its game, Toyota's luxury brand only capable of 22,025 sales last year. All three have a long way to go before Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz start worrying, Read Full Story
If you want the finest mid-size sport-luxury SUV on the market look no further than the Range Rover Sport, but a lot of fans have been calling for its Euro-market turbo-diesel here in North America. Wait…

2016 Range Rover Sport HSE Td6 Road Test Review

Those that regularly read my scribblings will know I've been requesting JLR to empower its enviable lineup of sport-luxury cars and SUVs with diesel propulsion for almost as long as I've been reviewing them, and yes that time has finally arrived. Meet the 2016 Range Rover Sport HSE Td6, mostly the same SUV as last year, albeit infused with a much more efficient new heart.

I realize that I'm probably not speaking to the Range Rover Sport V8 Supercharged or SVR owner already enjoying zero to 100km/h times of 5.3 and 4.7 seconds respectively, unless they feel a newfound calling to delve deeper into the wild green yonder and therefore require much-improved fuel economy to do so. While such thriftiness has its merits off-road, most will appreciate the Sport Td6's impressive 10.6 L/100km city, 8.1 highway and 9.4 combined five-cycle rating even more while attending to their regular daily duties, while its 7.6-second sprint to 100km/h is hardly lacking.

This is a 32-percent Read Full Story