Volkswagen announced complete pricing info for its redesigned 2022 Golf GTI and Golf R high-performance 4-door hatchbacks at the 2021 Chicago Auto Show. The ’22 Golf GTI and Golf R kick off the eighth generation of VW’s long-running compact hatchback in the U.S., and they are the only Golfs we’re getting… the non-performance versions of the Golf have been dropped for the American market and essentially replaced on our shores by VW’s new-for-2022 Taos compact crossover SUV.
The 2020 Chicago Auto Show was the last traditional auto show to take place before the COVID-19 pandemic hit America last year. With COVID restrictions now easing, the 2021 Chicago Auto Show is heralding the return to live, in-person auto shows with a special indoor/outdoor edition of the show, taking place from July 15-19 at the McCormick Place convention center—and Jeep has taken the opportunity to unveil its refreshed-for-2022 Compass compact SUV there.
After a year of cancelled car shows due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there’s lots of pent-up energy and interest around the 2021 car-event season—car lovers are anxious to get out of the garage and back to their favorite shows and cruise nights. One of our favorite summer “super shows” is the Goodguys Heartland Nationals at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines, IA. One of the longest-running events on the Goodguys schedule (this year’s edition was the 30th annual), the Heartland Nats always takes place on the weekend closest to the 4th of July, and regularly draws more than 4000 vehicles. This year’s show enjoyed record-breaking participation: almost 5000 registered vehicles filled the spacious fairgrounds facility.
There’s at least month or so to go before Ford’s revived Bronco starts hitting dealerships in earnest, but at a recent special-preview event we had the opportunity to check out a pair of nicely equipped 4-door Broncos: a First Edition model in Cactus Gray, and a Badlands model in Area 51 (a military/industrial-looking medium gray-blue).
Today Hyundai released teaser images of its long-anticipated entry into the pickup-truck market, though as it turns out, that entry is a genre-bending vehicle that doesn’t stick specifically to the standard pickup-truck layout. Hyundai says its new-for-2022 Santa Cruz “shatters both SUV and truck segments, creating an entirely new vehicle category.”
We’ll admit that when the first wave of fastback-roofed sport-utility vehicles started hitting the market, kicked off by the BMW X6 back in 2008, we didn’t really “get it.” Why would an automaker take a vehicle that’s primarily designed for utility—heck, the word is right in the name!—and deliberately turn it into something less practical?
Well, believe it or not, we’re already almost at the end of Buick’s first full model year as an SUV-only brand. The LaCrosse large sedan and Cascada convertible both said sayonara after the 2019 model year, and Buick’s last traditional passenger-car holdouts—the midsize Regal Sportback hatchback sedan and Regal TourX wagon—were dropped after the 2020 model year.