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Pickup Truck Tailgates | Fuel Economy - Consumer Reports News

Truck owners have long debated how to improve the aerodynamics of the cargo bed and if doing so was worth the effort. Conventional wisdom dictates …

2015 Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class | Small Luxury SUVs - Consumer Reports News

Like the CLA, the GLA is powered by a 208-hp, 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine with a seven-speed automatic transmission. Mercedes claims …

BMW-Toyota Sports Car Taking Shape

Expect Hybrid-Assisted Power, Different Sheetmetal, Tokyo Show Concept Debut<p>When BMW and Toyota announced their intention earlier this year to produce a jointly developed, midsize sports car, it took some industry watchers by surprise. You can certainly argue Toyota needs help building up its …

2013 Ram 3500 HD First Drive

Where 0-60 in 36 Seconds Flat is a Good Thing<p>That’s right. The Ram Heavy Duty takes 36 seconds to hit 60 mph, but that’s a good thing. Imagine you’re towing 15 tons, on a nice summer day with the AC on, and after three successive runs with only braking in between, the fluid temperatures are still …

2013 Mercedes-Benz SL63 AMG First Test

You Shall Pass (in TRQV8DR)<p>It’s ridiculous, really. This 2013 Mercedes-Benz SL63 AMG grand touring roadster, stocked with neck warmers and heated seats, packs more torque than the C6 Corvette ZR1, Shelby Mustang GT500, or Viper TA.<p>Aside from initially being amazed at this phenomenal stat, I …

2013 Nissan GT-R Black Edition Verdict

Godzilla Goes Bye-Bye<p>Throughout its 13-month loan, our GT-R Black Edition was in constant motion — whether as a participant in signature events like our Best Driver’s Car (November 2012), in comparison tests against supercars such as the Porsche 911 Turbo S (June 2012), or as a foil to other …

2014 BMW X5 First Look

Why Mess With Success?<p>BMW‘s “ultimate driving machine” tagline typically doesn’t make you think of the brand’s SUVs. But as BMW’s third best-selling vehicle in 2012 behind the 3 Series and 5 Series, the venerable X5 is a key model for the German automaker in the U.S. and other markets. With the …

2014 Chevrolet Malibu First Look

The Emergency Refresh Arrives<p>We called the redesigned 2013 Chevrolet Malibu “a consistent disappointment” during 2013 Car of the Year testing. Jonny Lieberman went so far as to call the midsize sedan “not so much a car as it is a collection of things I hate about rentals.” We’ve heard GM was …

2014 Audi R8 Spyder First Test

The Star Car<p>We’ve had many a kind word for the Audi R8, which has dazzled us with accessible performance and showstopping looks. We even went so far as to name the supercar our Best Handling Car (now Best Driver’s Car) a few years back. Underlying all that praise, though, was an angry caveat: The …

2014 Toyota Corolla First Look

Now Less Bland, With Standard LED Headlights<p>Despite criticism for being plain and appliance-like basic, the Toyota Corolla continues to sell in extraordinary volumes, always landing at or near the top of its class in monthly sales. The current generation is hardly distinguishable from the model …

2014 Audi R8 V8 Spyder vs. 2013 Mercedes-Benz SL63 AMG vs. 2013 Porsche 911 S Cabriolet

Zee gut, Zee badÄss, und Zee AMG: Three topless wonders tackle the mean streets of Utah<p>The modern German car industry is miraculous, if for no other reason than the multitude of methods employed to skin the same old cat. Take the three sporty convertibles we’ve assembled for this comparison test: …

2014 Aston Martin Rapide S First Test

Be Still Our Beating Hearts, Still<p>Much has changed about the Aston Martin Rapide since it first graced the world’s roads back in 2010. For one, Aston is selling many fewer Rapides than it first envisioned. That’s most likely the reason Aston rapidly (tee-hee) rushed such a thorough refresh after …

2012 Intermeccanica 356A Carrera Speedster First Drive

Having 'Vintage' Your Way<p>Unlike the vast majority of American car buyers, I custom-ordered the only brand-new car I ever bought — a 1986 Dodge Lancer Turbo that talked (“a door is ajar!”) — with every available option except the fun-sapping three-speed slushbox, the mass-up-high sunroof, and the …

Top 10 Largest Engines in U.S.-Market Cars

No Replacement for Displacement<p>As the new car market shifts towards small-displacement turbocharged engines, big, brutish engines are becoming rarer. Not only are humdrum midsize sedans downsizing their engines, supercars are too: The Ferrari 458 Italia has a 4.5-liter V-8, while the McLaren 12C …

2013 Range Rover Supercharged vs. Mercedes-Benz GL63 AMG

Status Apparatus: A Shopping Suggestion for the Recently Drafted Athlete<p>Congratulations! You’ve just been picked 127th in the NFL/NBA/NHL draft! There’s a jersey and a big, fat contract with your name on it. Now then, how will you spend your newfound fortune and let everyone back home know that you …

2014 Fiat 500L First Drive

Will L Stand for Love?<p>We’ve been under the impression that the L in the 2014 Fiat 500L stands for Large. But before attending the press drive in Baltimore, Maryland (where U.S.-spec 500Ls will be delivered after they’re built in Kragujevac, Serbia), we didn’t know that L actually stands for several …

2013 Volkswagen Jetta GLI Long-Term Update 2

Sticky Shoes and Sticky Stats<p>The GLI’s standard Dunlop SP Sport 01 A/S tires are solid performers — lateral acceleration of 0.87 g, 60-to-0-mph braking of 123 feet, and a figure-eight run of 26.5 seconds at 0.69 g are nothing to be ashamed of — but I wanted to see how Vee-Dub’s sport sedan would …

2014 Porsche Panamera First Drive

Longer Wheelbases, Bigger Batteries, More Power<p>If there’s one thing we’ve come to expect from Porsche, it’s that it doesn’t mess with a good thing (too much, anyway). For proof, take a look at the 911 and its 50-year history. Or even look at the Porsche Cayenne, now in its second generation. So …

Volvo S60 Flywheel KERS Prototype First Drive

A different kind of alternative powertrain<p>Since the invention of the wheel, we’ve discovered a fair number of ways to move a vehicle mounted with several of them. By far the most commercially successful is the internal combustion engine, but science keeps telling us it could be supplanted someday. …

2014 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series First Test

Black Magic<p>Click. Click. SMACK. Click-click. Leaving my parking spot is a noisy event. I’m on the bank of a favorite country road, and I’m wondering what’s wrong with this king of land-bound rockets, the $296,000 2014 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Black Series. It’s as if kernels of corn are popping inside …

2013 BMW M6 Coupe First Test

BMW's Big, Bad Bully<p>Larger and heavier, yet more efficient and also quicker than its predecessor, the 2013 BMW M6 is a great big bully of a car. With Sakhir orange metallic paint and a naked carbon-fiber roof, it also tends to attract attention. If you enjoy getting thumbs-ups from Slurpee-sipping …

A Deeper Look at the Bentley Continental GT3 Racing Program

The Bentley Boys Return with a Seemingly Unlikely Vehicular Partner<p>The Bentley Continental GT3 race car recently made its debut at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. Weeks before the event, we had a chance to find out more about the new race program when we shared a meal with three men at the Gilpin …

2014 Range Rover Sport First Drive

Sporty Spice: Reborn SUV Melds Streamlined Elegance with Brute Off-Road Strength<p>The rumble of the new 2014 Range Rover Sport is so powerful, it can make sheep move out of the way. That’s a handy attribute if you’re driving through the Welsh countryside, where sheep outnumber people three to one. …

BMW M4 Coupe Concept First Look

Bold Looking Coupe with an Odd Badge<p>There’s no doubt that perusing the pictures of the BMW M4 Coupe Concept will be a bittersweet moment for some diehard M fanatics. Overall, the car looks great, but those M4 badges sure do look odd don’t they?<p>The M4 concept, which debuts at this week’s Concours …

2014 Lexus IS 350 AWD First Test

Fun Even Without the F Word<p>With the Lexus IS 350 AWD, we’ve reached yet another part of the brand’s hairpin-like return to building fun cars. We’ve already described in detail the qualities of the rear-drive ISs, but the successes of this non-F-Sport model, saddled with extra all-wheel-drive …

2013 Volvo S60 T6 AWD R-Design First Test

Swedish Immersion<p>We’re standing at the corner of Draper and Marion Streets in Kingsburg, California, watching a parade. Spectators — most of them happy families wearing blue — line the streets, cheering as marching bands, Kingsburg High School alumni, miniature horses, and vintage tractors trundle …

2013 Chrysler 300S Long-Term Update 1

Big White has the style and class to be a fitting Vegas ride.<p>The big, comfortable sedan has always been a solid choice for long roadtrips on our long, flat highways and our 2013 Chrysler 300S is no exception. Since it’s arrival, it’s gone for a day trip to the Salton Sea plus voyages to Las Vegas, …