Archive for June, 2014

2014 Scion FR-S

Consumer Guide’s test 2014 Scion FR-S arrived modestly equipped, listing for $27,534 including options and destination charge.

2014 Scion FR-S

Miles Driven: 296

Fuel Used: 9.3 gallons

Real-world fuel economy: 31.8 mpg


1994 Isuzu Oasis

This year, American new-vehicle shoppers will snap up about half a million minivans. Now, while that may seem like a lot of people-movers, it’s worth noting that minivans accounted for more than 1.2 million annual sales as recently as model-year 2000.


The all-new 2015 Volkswagen Golf starts at $18,815 in limited-run Launch Edition trim. Shown is the all-electric e-Golf, due later this year.

In this case, being “over par” is a good thing.

Most Volkswagens have long occupied a gap between “regular” and “premium” nameplates in the areas of cost and refinement, and the redesigned 2015 Golf, GTI, and new electrified e-Golf are no exception. The only break from tradition is that there isn’t as much of a cost differential as there used to be. In fact, some model prices have come down significantly, despite the fact that their list of standard equipment has been lengthened and fuel economy has been improved.

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Consumer Guide’s test Rogue arrived with AWD and in SL trim. With options our test vehicle came to $32,395.

2014 Nissan Rogue SL AWD

Dates tested: 5/01/2014 – 5/08/2014

Miles Driven: 298

Fuel Used: 13.8 gallons

Real-world fuel economy: 21.6 mpg


The Mazda RX-8 is inarguably a cool car, but the black paint on this example looks to have been applied with a brush. Still, some lucky kid is learning something about the rotary engine, and hopefully he’s driving stick.

When I was in high school, students who drove themselves to class generally did so in family cast-aside vehicles. The Fremd High School class of 1983 was most often seen in mid- and late-Seventies General Motors A and G bodies, with 4-door Cutlasses and Buick Regals among the most-common rides.

Smart Rear View Mirror

Nissan’s Smart Rear View Mirror is shown here in a 2014 Rogue which may or may not be available with the technology in the U.S. Nissan will announce specific model availability at a later date.

Over the past few years, rearview cameras have exploded in popularity. That’s nothing but good in my opinion, as I consider them to be among the most useful of today’s new automotive technologies. Some rearview cameras are better than others, but an upcoming one from Nissan really breaks new ground.

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Do you know why this Porsche engine is extreme?

It’s something car guys might sit around and debate: the first of this, the biggest of that, the smallest of something else. And that’s just how this list got started. While discussing something entirely unrelated with Publisher Tom Appel and Collectible Automobile chief John Biel, we ventured off topic (not an altogether unusual occurrence when the current topic isn’t cars) and ended up brainstorming this list. Being as the session took place just before lunch – and was thus foreshortened by same – we encourage correction if you beg to differ.

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Consumer Guide’s test 2014 Porsche Cayman S arrive well-optioned, stickering for $89,915 including the $950 destination charge.

2014 Porsche Cayman S

Miles Driven: 409

Fuel Used: 17.4 gallons

Nicholas Cage Chinese Commercial

We knew it as the Saab 9-5, Nicholas Cages knows it and flogs it as the Senova D.

Purists often refer to the 1999-2010 Saab 9-5 as the last “real” Saab. This because the 9-5 is the last Saab to have been more-or-less fully developed by the Swedish maker’s in-house engineering team.

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Quiz image number 1.

By now you probably know the drill; We give you an abstract portion of a brochure cover, and you have to guess the vehicle featured. For this quiz we’re featuring the cars of 1970. All of the vehicles in question were available for sale in the U.S. We can also tell you that none of the cars here are especially rare, obscure, or of a kit-car nature.