A fitting backdrop for the debut of one of the world’s sportiest motorized creations, last weekend’s Goodwood Festival of Speed   held in West Sussex, England was McLaren Automotive’s…

Limited edition McLaren 650S unveiled at Goodwood

A fitting backdrop for the debut of one of the world's sportiest motorized creations, last weekend's Goodwood Festival of Speed held in West Sussex, England was McLaren Automotive's choice for pulling the sheet off of its new limited edition 650S supercar.

This special 650S, which was developed by McLaren's bespoke personalization division McLaren Special Operations and debuted alongside a special GT3 racing-spec version of the same model, gets a number of unique tweaks unavailable on the "base" 650S. For starters, exterior upgrades include satin-finish carbon-fibre components such as extended MSO side blades "giving a subtle and purposeful look" says the press release, plus a distinctive three-piece carbon-enhanced rear bumper, a more pronounced rear diffuser, and new Palladium coloured 10-spoke diamond-cut alloy rims that weigh four kilos less per wheel and are locked in place with lightweight titanium wheel bolts, while climbing inside, owners will immediately be met by a Read Full Story
Reportedly HM Queen Elizabeth II was Bentley’s first Bentayga W12 customer, lofty company indeed. Of course, her outdated Range Rover wouldn’t be quick enough to escort the corgis to Sandringham,…

2017 Bentley Bentayga W12 Road Test Review

If you want to make a splash while pulling up at your kids' private school, this is the SUV you need. Nothing shows you've arrived like a Bentley grille, and the fact that it now graces a full size family hauler says as much about a rejuvenated Bentley brand as it does about the person behind the wheel.

Whether you see it as the best thing that ever happened to the SUV or the worst moment in Bentley's long and storied existence, the Bentayga marks a significant change in the way this ultra-premium British brand goes about business. Up until this year it's solely been in the car game, but we've seen this saga play out so many times now we shouldn't be at all surprised when yet another classic marque seemingly sells its soul for profit. Let's never forget these companies are mostly subsidiaries of much larger multinationals and therefore tradition is only sacrosanct to the point that progress doesn't interfere with brand equity, and these days that latter attribute is as much about Read Full Story
Note to Range Rover: shelve your 2017 advertising campaign. Just make sure Adele, Beyoncé, Rihanna, Drake, Justin, Lukas, Sturgill, and don’t forget James Corden, roll up to the 59th Grammys at Staples…

2017 Range Rover Evoque Convertible Road Test Review

If you want to stand out in the world of luxury, you can't merely imitate. You've got to innovate. Mercedes did this by introducing the world's first four-door coupe in its CLS, and then followed it up with the ultra-popular CLA; BMW took the same concept to new heights with their sport coupe-like X6 SUV and more recent X4; and now Land Rover's most premium Range Rover division brings us the world's first luxury SUV convertible.

World's first? I suppose we should have already given Land Rover that title for its Defender 90, which was certainly luxurious when it came to pricing and features, at least for the '90s (it was dubbed 90 for its wheelbase, not the era), and of course included a removable top, but the new Evoque Convertible is the first modern-day drop-top SUV with a fully automated and insulated power retractable roof and a truly luxurious interior. That it's based on the only true two-door SUV coupe in the industry just goes to show that innovation is nothing new with Read Full Story
Nissan gave its mid-size Altima family sedan a mid-cycle redo last year and therefore its status quo for 2017, but it still represents good value. While the base model offers a lot for just over $23k,…

2017 Nissan Altima 2.5 SL Road Test Review

Like what you see? You're looking at the nicely updated Altima, a car that took on a number of Nissan's new brand-wide design enhancements last year for a mix between the subtle Sentra and sultry Maxima. I suppose it makes sense for any mid-size family sedan to find the middle ground with respect to styling, something the Altima also does with respect to performance.

The more wildly penned Maxima, Nissan's self-proclaimed 4DSC (four-door sports car), is the Japanese brand's four-door performance leader, and while a new Sentra with more get up and go has just hit the streets this Altima is more competitive within its mid-size family sedan segment.

The Altima is only one of two mid-size models that have already surpassed their 2015 calendar year totals after just 11 months of year-to-date sales, with 7,458 down the road compared to 7,293 all of last year; the other car is the redesigned Chevy Malibu. Even so December's sales won't be able to push the Altima near the 9,475 Read Full Story
After a makeover last year the RDX continues into 2017 mostly unchanged, but that doesn’t make it any less desirable. Actually, it’s one of the bestselling compact luxury SUVs thanks to a $42+k base…

2017 Acura RDX Elite Road Test Review

Name me a German compact SUV that comes standard with full LED headlamps? I'll save you the time of looking, as there isn't one. This advanced safety and styling feature is only optional with the Teutonic brands, each of which costs more than Acura's RDX even when compared in base trim.

From the Japanese premium brand's entry-level ILX sedan to its mid-size seven-occupant MDX utility, good value has long been an Acura trait. You can buy a 2017 RDX for as little as $42,190, which while a thousand more than last year's base price is still a great deal for what you're getting.

First off the RDX comes standard with a smooth and energetic 3.5-litre V6 that's good for 279 horsepower and 252 lb-ft of torque, plus standard AWD. Additional standard kit includes 18-inch alloys, amplitude reactive dampers, a host of AcuraWatch features such as forward collision warning, collision mitigation braking, lane departure warning, lane keep assist, tire pressure monitoring, and adaptive Read Full Story
Chevy has restyled its 2016 Silverado 1500 with the LTZ Z71 being the most dramatic update. A new hood, grille, front bumper, LED headlamps and LED DRLs, fogs and taillights join updates inside plus last…

2016 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Crew Cab Short Box 4WD LTZ Z71 Road Test Review

A few subtle design tweaks can make for quite a difference, evidenced by the 2016 Chevrolet Silverado in near top-line LTZ Z71 trim. A new front fascia displaying a revised horizontally split grille, a fresh set of freeform LED headlights and DRLs, vertically stacked LED fog lamps, and a reshaped bumper integrating tough yet classy looking metallic trim thoroughly modernizes the popular pickup. Really, it looks as if Chevy redesigned the entire machine. In other trims the chrome detailing doesn't quite capture the changes like this mostly body-colour LTZ Z71.

This might be the first year that I have liked the Silverado more than GMC's Sierra, although the Chevy truck's fraternal twin looks pretty mean with its massive highway rig grille and equally alluring LED headlamps. Of course, GM would rather we choose between their two uniquely styled offerings than one of their competitors, which is a marketing philosophy that's done them pretty well in recent years. With 118,837 units Read Full Story
The only thing longer than a full-size crew cab pickup truck is its name, today’s review of the 2016 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel Laramie Longhorn Crew Cab 4x4 making that point very clear. The Laramie Longhorn…

2016 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel Laramie Longhorn Crew Cab 4×4 Road Test Review

What's stylish to one person can be gauche to another, which is why automakers create so many different trim levels. This is especially true for pickup truck lines. Earlier this year I tested a 2016 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel Crew Cab Laramie Limited 4x4 and since then I had the pleasure of driving the same truck in EcoDiesel Crew Cab Laramie Longhorn 4x4 trim.

You'd think by merely swapping Limited for Longhorn there wouldn't be much difference in the way these two trucks look, but the former is focused much more on urbanites whereas as the latter is pure country. Think rich rancher instead of a simple ranch hand, mind you, the 2016 Ram 1500 EcoDiesel Crew Cab Laramie Longhorn 4x4 starting at a cool $58,495 plus freight and fees compared to $31,095 for the base 1500 ST. The Laramie Limited? It's priced even higher at $62,495.

In between workhorse ST and the dolled up Laramie Longhorn are SXT, SLT, HFE, Outdoorsman, Sport, Big Horn, Laramie, and Rebel models. Like I said, there's Read Full Story
The i3 is one of the world’s bestselling electric cars for good reason; it combines traditional BMW quality, performance and features into a highly economical and practical 4-seat hatchback design.…

2016 BMW i3 REx Suite Road Test Review

Initially I had big plans for my BMW i3 REx tester. My partner Karen and I had a trip planned from our home in Richmond, BC to Whistler, with a hopeful stopover for breakfast and some meandering in Squamish in order to recharge battery and bodies. I knew it would require planning, but had no idea the very premise of my trip was flawed from the onset.

After all, I've seen every manner of electric car from humble Nissan Leafs to premium Teslas in Whistler, which is about an hour and a half from downtown Vancouver (approximately two hours from Richmond), and plenty more along the way. Tesla has a set of proprietary supercharging stations in Squamish and there's a less powerful Level II public variant on site as well, plus many more up in Whistler, so what could possibly be the problem?

My plan was to drive on full-electric power until the i3's battery ran out of juice, at which point the gasoline-powered range extender would take over and get us to Squamish where we'd Read Full Story