Category Archives: Autofile

Dodge Dart: 2013-’16
July 27, 2020

Overview

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Description

Dodge claimed that the Dart’s Giulietta platform resulted in a car that was the largest in its class, ahead of the Toyota Corolla, Honda Civic, Mazda3 and Chevrolet Cruze. Indeed the Dart is bigger than it seems. Styling was smooth and clearly Dodge-like and the spacious interior was also a standout, with futuristic-looking gauges, non-traditional control-panel displays and a unique storage area beneath the front-passenger-seat-cushion. The Dart’s ride and road manners were equal to the best-in-class compacts.

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Volkswagen Eos: 2007-’15
June 29, 2020

Overview

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Description

A new Eos listed for about $6,000 more than the New Beetle convertible. The folding metal roof (with available built-in sunroof), additional standard content and more powerful engines no doubt contributed to the extra expense. The interior was also better appointed than the Beetle’s and a 2012 refresh made it even more so. The relatively soft suspension was tuned more for cruising than sporty driving. The convertible’s eight electric motors lowered the top beneath the trunk lid and raised it from its storage area in about 25 seconds.

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Chevrolet Equinox 2010-’17
May 25, 2020

Overview

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Description

The second-generation 2010-’17 Equinox used the same platform as the GMC Terrain and was a big improvement over the original Equinox in terms of looks and roominess. Much-improved seating and interior appointments matched the bolder styling. This Equinox’s cabin was also quieter than before, primarily due to plenty of sound insulation. Ride quality was also an Equinox strong point.

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GMC Canyon: 2004-’12
April 20, 2020

Overview

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Description

The GMC Canyon and its near-twin Chevrolet Colorado replaced the junior-sized GMC Sonoma and Chevy S10 pickups. Both came in regular-and extended-cab versions (the latter with swing-out rear doors) as well as in four-door-crew-cab livery. A 175-horsepower 2.8-liter four-cylinder engine was standard, while a 220-horsepower 3.5-liter five-cylinder was optional.

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Toyota Tacoma: 2005-’15
March 30, 2020

Overview

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Description

The Tacoma first arrived for 1995 as Toyota’s entry-level small pickup, becoming the little brother to the midsize T100 that was replaced for the 2000 model year by the full-size Tundra. The Tacoma was restyled in 1998 and again in 2001, then was completely overhauled for the 2005 model year. Engine choices consisted of a 2.7-liter four-cylinder and an optional 4.0-liter V-6. Four-wheel-drive was available with both engines and for regular-cab, extended-length Access Cab and four-door Double Cab versions.

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Toyota Tundra: 2007-’13
March 23, 2020

Overview

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Description

This generation of Tundra had a solid reputation as s rugged performer that was nicely detailed inside and out. It was also better equipped to take on the full-size domestic pickups. Models equipped with the strong-running V-8 gave the Tundra real hauling and towing power, but the smaller V-6 and V-8 engines were also capable. All three cabs — regular, extended-length Double Cab and four-door CrewMax — provided buyers with roominess and comfort (for example, the extended Double Cab can actually carry five adult riders).

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Mini Countryman: 2011-’16
February 17, 2020

Overview

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Description

Unlike other Minis, the Countryman could comfortably seat four adults in individual chairs, or five passengers in 2014-’16 models that came with a split-folding rear seat. There was also plenty of cargo space behind the front seats when the rears were folded flat. As with other Mini models, there’s a moon-sized round pod that houses the speedometer and the infotainment screen. The car’s sport-tuned suspension and precise steering also made it fun to drive.

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Volkswagen Jetta: 2006-’10
January 20, 2020

Overview

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Description

The Mexico-built Jetta provided German-engineered fit and finish at a far more affordable price than, for example, a BMW 3 series, Audi A4 or Mercedes-Benz C-class sedan. Both Jetta gasoline engines, including the 150-horsepower five-cylinder (upgraded to 170 horsepower for 2008) and the 200-horsepower turbo four-cylinder (standard in the sporty GLI) delivered decent power. As well, the 140-horsepower four-cylinder turbo-diesel, available for 2009-’10 Jettas, was thrifty and provided reasonable acceleration.

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Mitsubishi Outlander: 2007-’13
December 16, 2019

Overview

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Description

The second-generation 2007-’13 Outlander was a big step above the original and provided more passenger space, comfort and, with the V-6 option, more power for hauling and towing. The optional all-wheel-drive was one of the better systems available and could direct up to 70 percent of the engine’s torque to the rear wheels, which it did when accelerating from rest. The AWD could also be locked in at any speed or road condition to aid grip in the turns.

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Mazda MX-5 Miata: 2007-’15
November 18, 2019

Overview

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Description

Mazda turned the sports-car world on its ear when the cute-and-sassy Miata arrived in the fall of 1989. The two-seat roadster, which was reminiscent of a 1960s-vintage Lotus Elan, boasted a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine along with a five-speed manual transmission. The available four-speed automatic was a rarely ordered option. In 1994, the Miata’s engine grew to 1.8 liters and horsepower crept up to 128 from 116. A larger and more-powerful Miata replaced the first-generation car for 1999, which continued until Mazda’s third-generation two-seater was launched for the 2007 model year.

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