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The Suzuki Jimny Is Objectively Terrible but Incredibly Charming

Suzuki’s Jimny is a charming car. One that, thanks to a combination of chunky looks, a go-anywhere image, and an occasionally lurid color scheme, you can’t help but love. However, much like the most charming people, it’s not perfect in the slightest. In fact, it’s objectively one of the worst cars on sale today. You’ll still want one though.

The Jimny is one of those cars that it’s impossible to walk by without squeaking “Oh! Jimny!!” Despite the fact it’s about as big as a Shetland Pony, it comes dripping with presence. Suzuki helped this with the option of highlighter yellow paint (an option, sadly, but one that means it apparently doesn’t need to be dolled up in high-visibility paint on building sites), and a design straight out of the Tonka studio. It looks ready to take on the world, despite being half the size of a regular car. It’s kinda like Scrappy Doo, but with more charisma.

suzuki jimny
SUZUKI

The inside is roomy enough for a couple of adults up front. Its interior is a feast of chunky molded plastic, dials, grab bars, and other things that make you think off roady thoughts. Though still… half-size. It’s two-door only, and while there are rear seats, they’re not super roomy. The trunk is barely deep enough to fit an iPhone in lengthways, so the less said about that the better. Being able to fold its seats down does offer more space, for sure, but that forces you to choose between people and things. For some, it’s not a hard choice. For others, it is. People with children, for example. Though if you want to throw some extra practicality on there, you can always get some sort of roof box or lash your bags up there. Though to fit the car’s image, at least one suitcase needs to be covered in stickers depicting Hello Kitty dressed as a commando.

No matter how you like your cars, you can’t say the Jimny’s ugly. Sure, some of the interior plastics are a little scratchy, and you have to wonder why its bumpers are quite as chunky as they are, but it’s a cool thing. It seems to blend the Honda E’s cuteness with the ruggedness of a Land Rover Defender, and retro sensibilities of a Mini Cooper in to a small, adorable ‘my first off-roader’ package.

suzuki jimny
SUZUKI

Curb appeal isn’t an issue. Its drive, however, is. Like lots of these things, they’ll have been bought thanks to the promise of off-road prowess and then used almost exclusively on the road (take a walk through Chelsea, London and count the Land Rover Defenders—new and old—and you’ll see how common it is). Having something ready for the (increasingly likely) apocalypse is all well and good, but if it makes the preamble a misery, perhaps the juice isn’t quite worth the squeeze.

Its tiny 1.5-liter naturally aspirated four-cylinder motor produces 100 hp and 96 lb-ft and sends it to all four wheels. That’s enough, Suzuki says, to get it to 62 mph in 12.6 seconds and up to 90 mph flat out. It’ll manage just 30 mpg while doing so as well.

suzuki jimny
SUZUKI

That 0-62 mph figure seems… ambitious. You need to rev the knackers off it to get it to 30 mph in town, and when you’re out on the open road, pushing it to 70 mph feels abusive. When you’re there, its square front end means further progress is slow. You make lots of noise for little payoff. For some, that aural-drama-to-license-risk ratio might be fun, maybe? However, it’s noisy on the highway, and strangely wobbly.

Soft suspension is on board to ensure it can fulfill its off-road capabilities, but to get the muddy stuff it makes road driving akin to gently bouncing on a small trampoline. In fact, its springs are so soft that by swaying your body side to side in the cabin you can make the whole car wallow.

suzuki jimny
SUZUKI

Gears are swapped via a five-speed stick. It’s a long shift and it’s oddly fun to use. That’s a positive because to get the best out of its tiny engine you need to change gear often. For off-road duties there’s a two-wheel drive and low-range mode—and that’s where the Jimny’s talents truly lie. For getting up, down, around, or through pretty much anything you could reasonably need to, you can’t go wrong with a Jimny. It’ll just get on with the matter of moving. Whether the ground is dusty, muddy, or plain soaking, you get the impression that the Jimny will handle it. You have faith that the machine will see you through without issue—except here there’s no Active All Terrain Off-Road Super Mega Hyper Assist, there’s a ladder chassis, lots of mechanical bits, and human input.

When it comes to driving the thing, it’s much like the old Land Rover Defender. Flawed on road to the point where you need to almost literally drive it on its door handles to get the best out of it, and no nonsense off-road.

suzuki jimny
SUZUKI

Sadly, as previously discussed, many of these new Jimnys in the world won’t be used off road. They’ll have CarPlay streaming Spotify, Waze guiding drivers from one place to another, and countless people outside pointing with glee.

See, what Suzuki has created is an instant classic. It’s inoffensive, charming, and happy. Again, like the Defenders of old, it’ll get you far more cred in town than outside of it despite its abilities.

It’s impractical, small, and for the vast majority of people it’ll be woeful to drive. But you’ll love it all the more for it. Like a puppy that’s just curled one out on the rug, you can’t stay mad at it. Its infectious charm will win you over time and time again—a rare trait in the vast majority of modern, homogenized do-everything SUVs rolling out of factory gates. Not only is it charming, but its charm is memorable too.

suzuki jimny
SUZUKI
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2022 Hyundai Tucson Preview

FAST FACTS
  • Completely redesigned compact crossover SUV
  • Gas, hybrid, and plug-in hybrid powertrains
  • Larger and more accommodating then ever
  • Seats five people, holds 38.7 cu.-ft. of cargo behind back seat
  • New multi-air interior ventilation and air purification system
  • Standard and available SmartSense safety technology
  • High-tech instrumentation and infotainment systems
  • Sporty Tucson N Line will join the lineup later
  • Arrives in U.S. before summer of 2021

Introduction – Find the best Hyundai deals!

A redesigned 2022 Hyundai Tucson is coming soon, replacing a compact SUV that led its segment in quality according to the J.D. Power 2020 Initial Quality Study (IQS).

Hyundai did not repeat that award-winning performance in the J.D. Power 2020 Automotive Performance, Execution, and Layout (APEAL) Study, which measures the emotional connection consumers have with the performance, design, and layout of their vehicles. And that’s where the all-new 2022 Tucson promises to make up some lost ground.

2022 Hyundai Tucson Gray Front View

The key, based our review of the existing Tucson, is to improve the SUV’s fun-to-drive factor and its cargo space. But Hyundai is going well beyond this with the new Tucson, with compelling design, a modern interior, the latest in safety and infotainment technologies, and a choice between gas, hybrid, and plug-in hybrid powertrains.

Local Deals & Incentives
If you are in the market for a new car we can help you find local deals and the latest incentives from dealers in your area.

Exterior Features – Find the best Hyundai deals!

With the 2022 Hyundai Tucson, the automaker sought an emotional, transformative look that is anything but another cookie-cutter compact SUV.

2022 Hyundai Tucson Gray Rear Quarter View

“We wanted to create something iconic,” said Sangyup Lee, Hyundai’s head of global design, during the new Tucson’s global reveal in Seoul.

No more than a glance tells you Hyundai succeeded. Similar to the all-new 2021 Elantra, the new Tucson adheres to the automaker’s evolving Parametric Dynamics design ethos, which uses sharp edges and angular surfacing to define the compact crossover SUV.

Perhaps of most interest in how Hyundai embeds the Tucson’s lighting into the grille. When the SUV is turned off, the lighting is invisible. When the SUV is turned on, it presents an unmistakable look that makes the Tucson instantly identifiable. Lee calls it “an emotional touch that is simply magical.”

Viewed in profile, the new Tucson reflects what Hyundai says is a “coupe-like, avant-garde character.” Color choices include White Cream, Phantom Black, Shimmering Silver, Nocturne Gray, Amazon Gray, Flame Red, and Intense Blue. Aluminum wheels sized up to 19 inches in diameter are available to fill out the SUV’s flared fenders.

Around back, full-width taillights with embedded detailing add a jewel-like appearance, and Hyundai hides the rear window wiper under the roof spoiler while embedding a glass Hyundai logo in the lower portion of the window.

Two versions of the new Tucson are coming, a short-wheelbase model and a long-wheelbase model. North America gets the latter version, which provides more interior and cargo room.

Interior Features 

The Tucson’s flamboyant exterior design is a hard act to follow, but Hyundai is clearly up for the challenge. Rather than carry the exterior’s visual exuberance into the cabin, designers instead crafted a clean, modern, and minimalistic environment intending to provide a sense of “openness and serenity.”

2022 Hyundai Tucson Interior Dashboard

Though simple in terms of its appearance and detailing, the Tucson’s interior is simultaneously dramatic for its flat-topped dashboard that sweeps elegantly into the door panels, its three available 10.25-inch display panels, and its sharp color contrast with the light gray cloth or leather upholstery (the alternative to black).

Soft-touch material is used wherever occupants will regularly come into contact with the cabin, and a 64-color ambient lighting system is available with 10 levels of brightness and intensity. Electronic transmission controls are similar to larger Hyundai SUVs, heated front seats and a heated steering wheel are available, and an optional panoramic glass sunroof bathes the interior in natural light.

Hyundai uses a multi-air ventilation system in the new Tucson, which it says is benchmarked against those used on modern aircraft. Featuring dual-zone temperature control, the system monitors air quality, purifies the air to PM2.5 standards, and uses a technology to reduce moisture in the system to eliminate odor.

An available power tailgate opens to reveal 38.7 cubic feet of cargo space. To expand upon that, the rear seats use a fold-and-dive design to create maximum volume.

Under the Hood 

Hyundai will offer the 2022 Tucson with a standard 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine making an estimated 187 horsepower (190 PS) and 182 lb.-ft. of torque. It pairs with an 8-speed automatic transmission and powers the front or all four wheels. This is the same engine Hyundai is using in the Sonata midsize sedan, evidently with slightly different tuning.

As an upgrade, a 2022 Tucson Hybrid is available, and Hyundai says it won’t sacrifice performance for efficiency. All-new, this gas-electric hybrid powertrain uses a turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine and produces 227 hp (230 PS) and 258 lb.-ft. of torque. Driving range, according to Hyundai, allows a Tucson Hybrid to drive from Tucson, Arizona to Los Angeles on a single tank of gas. That’s 485 miles, according to Google Maps.

Hyundai will also offer a plug-in hybrid version of the Tucson. Details for that powertrain are not yet available. Hyundai does confirm that both the hybrid and plug-in hybrid feature new eHandling technology that improves steering response when the driver turns in to a corner or curve, and improves directional stability when exiting a corner or curve.

With the new Tucson, the optional HTRAC all-wheel-drive system adds three new driving modes, bringing the grand total to seven. All Tucsons offer Eco, Comfort, Smart, and Sport settings. With HTRAC, the menu grows to include Mud, Sand, and Snow.

Safety 

Hyundai will include the latest SmartSense collection of advanced driving assistance systems (ADAS) as standard equipment for the 2022 Tucson. Based on what the company says, SmartSense will have forward collision warning with pedestrian detection, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, lane keeping assistance, lane centering assistance, a driver monitoring system, and automatic high-beam headlights.

Additional ADAS for the Tucson includes advanced smart cruise control with stop-and-go capability, Highway Driving Assist (a Level 2 ADAS), a surround-view camera, automatic rear emergency braking, Remote Smart Parking Assist, and a Blind-Spot View Monitor.

Based on a Hyundai demonstration, it appears the forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking system now works at intersections to prevent a driver from making an ill-advised left turn across approaching traffic.

Technology 

If that list of ADAS wasn’t enough to convince you that the new Tucson is a high-tech SUV, let’s review what else Hyundai has in store.

First, Hyundai Digital Key will be available, which turns your smartphone into the vehicle key to unlock the doors and start the vehicle. It uses Near Field Communication (NFC) to detect and validate the digital key, and owners can use their smartphone app to start the engine, activate the climate control system, or issue a panic alert from 90 feet away.

Standard equipment includes an 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system stacked on top of a flat touch-sensing climate system panel. The infotainment system offers wireless Apple CarPlay, wireless Android Auto, and the ability to pair two smartphones to the Bluetooth connection at the same time. With Blue Link connected services, a free 3-year trial period is standard.

As an upgrade, a 10.25-inch infotainment system and a matching 10.25-inch digital instrumentation display are available, as well as a Bose premium sound system. Navigation is standard with the larger display, and enhanced natural language voice recognition makes the technology easier to use while fostering communication between the Tucson and smart home features.

Additionally, a Valet Mode protects your private information and provides a driving history showing how the SUV was used when it was not in your possession.

The information in this article is from Hyundai and includes speculation by the author. It was accurate on September 14, 2020 but may have changed since that date.

2021 Cadillac Escalade Preview

Introduction

Dripping in luxury and technical sophistication, the redesigned 2021 Cadillac Escalade establishes new benchmarks in the full-size luxury SUV segment.

Two versions are available. The standard 2021 Escalade is the smaller model, while the Escalade ESV features an extended wheelbase and longer length to provide more passenger and cargo room. Regardless of your selection, both 2021 Escalade models offer gains in seating and cargo space compared to the previous-generation version of the SUV.

2021 Cadillac Escalade shown with Sport Grille and Luxury Grille

Luxury is the standard trim level. From there, you choose Premium Luxury or Platinum Luxury, or Sport or Platinum Sport. Cadillac will set new Escalade prices closer to the SUV’s on-sale date in the third-quarter of 2020, with expectations of a base price under $80,000.

Exterior Features

Cadillac says its Escala concept vehicle influences the 2021 Escalade’s styling, but at this point that’s true of most of the company’s lineup. Regardless, the result is instantly recognizable as both a Cadillac and an Escalade.

If you want plenty of brightwork, stick with the Luxury side of the trim level ladder. For a blacked-out, sporty appearance, you’ll want the Sport or Platinum Sport versions of the SUV. No matter which 2021 Escalade you choose, it will include standard 22-inch alloy wheels.

Additional highlights include a wheelbase stretch for both versions of the Escalade, and the regular-length model is 7.1 inches longer than before while the extended-length Escalade ESV sees a 2.6-inch gain. In part due to its larger dimensions, the new Escalade offers far more interior room than the vehicle it replaces.

The 2021 Ford F-150

2021 Ford F-150 exterior

Competition is fierce in the full-sized pickup truck arena as Ford launches its all-new warrior, the redesigned 2021 F-150. It’s clear that the popularity and profitability of this truck provides the motivation for a significant evolution with each generation.

This generation is no different as Ford looks to deliver with an interior upgrade, work-friendly innovations, a hybrid powertrain, and a generous roster of safety and driver assist features that rival a luxury vehicle.

The core principles carry forward with a lightly updated exterior, steel frame/aluminum body, three cab configurations, three bed lengths, and six engines to choose from. There are myriad configurations again, with six trim levels: XL, XLT, Lariat, King Ranch, Platinum, and Limited. Digging deeper, there are many features and detail touches that could make this one of the most appealing F-150 generations ever.

The new truck boasts some big numbers, with a maximum of 430 horsepower, 3,250 lbs. cargo capacity, and 14,000 lbs. towing capability.

The F-150 will be made in America at two factories (the Dearborn Truck Plant in Michigan and Kansas City Assembly in Missouri) and goes on sale this fall.

Here’s what we know so far.

What it competes with: Chevrolet SilveradoGMC SierraNissan TitanRam 1500Toyota Tundra
What it looks like: An evolution of the popular and distinct F-150, with sci-fi headlights and more features than many cars.
Powertrains: 290-hp, 3.3-liter V6, 2.7-liter turbocharged V6, 400-hp, 3.5-liter turbocharged V6, 430-hp, 3.5-liter turbocharged V6 hybrid, 400-hp, 5.0-liter V8, and 250-hp, 3.0-liter diesel V6; a 10-speed automatic transmission; rear- and four-wheel drive
Price: $29,000-$75,000 (estimated)
On-sale date: Fall 2020
2021 Ford F-150

Ram Really Wants You to Off-Road Your 702-HP TRX

Yes, the headline figure for the new Ram 1500 TRX is its 702 horsepower, but this won’t be a one-trick-pony thundertruck in the mold of the GMC Syclone—it should be a proper off-roader. That becomes clear when looking at its catalog of Mopar accessories.

Ram announced today that there will be 100 different Mopar accessories for the new TRX, and there are a handful that stick out to us. The truck will be offered with beadlock-capable wheels, and Mopar will even sell you the beadlock rings for $205 a pop. These wheels and rings keep the bead of the tire attached to the wheel when running low tire pressures for hardcore off-roading. The beadlock-capable wheels are a $1895 option for the TRX, and you can see them pictured below with locks in place on the Launch Edition truck.

2021 ram trx
RAM

In addition to the beadlock rings, Mopar will also offer aluminum rock rails for $1195, which help keep the underside protected when traversing difficult terrain. There’s also the $1195 RamBar for mounting accessories high up, including Mopar’s $595 off-road LED lights. And to get your TRX fully off-road ready, there’s a $995 bed mount for the spare, which will be very handy if you’re way out on the trails and you pop a tire.

Mopar will also offer the typical accessories, like floor mats and bed rails. But these off-road parts are what we care about. They really indicate what Ram intends the TRX to be capable of. Surely many TRX customers will fit these parts just for the look (and who could blame them), but these are genuinely useful components.

We can’t wait to give the TRX a good shakedown on the trail. And the drag strip, of course.

Everything We Know About the 2021 Ford Bronco

After ending production in 1996, the legendary Ford Bronco is making a comeback. Ford announced the Bronco’s eventual return at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit back in 2017, and we’ve been waiting patiently ever since. Now, we have the official details on both the Bronco and the Bronco Sport.

This post will be continually updated as more information is released. It was last updated on July 24, 2020.

PRICE AND RELEASE DATE

The two-door base Bronco starts at $29,995, but you can easily add quite a bit to the price from there. Four-door Broncos start at $34,695 but can be optioned up to $60,800 if you spring for a loaded First Edition. Wranglers can be just as pricey. Head on over to our dedicated Bronco pricing article for the full details.

According to Ford’s website, Bronco deliveries are slated to begin in June 2021. Due to the massive demand so far, though, the company says reservation-holders may have to wait until the 2022 calendar year to actually receive their SUV.

Top 10: World’s Most Spectacular Rooftop Pools

There’s nothing quite like the feeling of taking a dip with a city beneath you. Here’s our guide to the 10 best hotel rooftop pools in the world, from Munich to Chile. Dive in!

10. MANDARIN ORIENTAL MUNICH, GERMANYMANDARIN ORIENTAL MUNICH, GERMANY

Tucked away in a quiet side street, Mandarin Oriental Munich offers an enticing mix of Oriental style, German charm and internationally renowned service. The stunning rooftop pool, which is open during the warm summer months, enjoys incredible 360 degree views over Munich. Heated to a comfortable temperature, you can take a leisurely dip or do laps to stay in shape.