Honda’s 3rd generation of the very popular CR-V is by far the best looking one yet. As has become the norm in the automotive kingdom, each succeeding generation of vehicles brings with it improved safety, luxuries and dimensions. Honda hasn’t diverged from the norm in their design of the CR-V. One thing that stands out in this re-design is that this just isn’t a Honda CR-V, but an Acura CR-V. This is a baby Acura SUV in every way imaginable – including the price. From the intoxicating smell of the leather interior to the quality feel throughout, Honda has really kicked it up a notch with the 2007 Acura – I mean Honda CR-V.
The last time I drove a Jeep Wrangler was many years ago – back when they were called either a TJ or a YJ. They were bouncy and a little primitive to say the least. Other adjectives you could use to describe them could have been: noisy, uncomfortable and did I say primitive? They were also as fast as a 3-legged greyhound wearing army boots. There were no cup holders in the Wranglers back then, and that was something that probably led to the creation of them. Driving on the smoothest of roads with a hot cuppa Joe in one hand and the steering wheel in the other, along with the jostling and bouncing of the Jeep, lead many to the emergency room of the local hospital with burned nether-regions – myself included (not really, but it was pretty close). Nevertheless, I still liked the little Jeep and understood why so many people buy them – even the ones that don’t ever take it off city streets and pavement. So why would I want to …
When I saw the Dodge Nitro at the Toronto International Auto Show a couple of years ago, and I thought it was a great-looking truck in a manly sort of way. I knew right away it would be the kind of vehicle people would either love or hate immediately. Unlike the swoopy offerings from Mazda (CX-7) and Acura (RDX), the Nitro is as square as a brick. The front end is completely upright and square, making the Hummer H2 look aerodynamic. The sides and front windshield are equally upright, adding to the drag co-efficiency (cd) of .39 and a wind resistance-be-damned attitude to the truck. With its big bulging wheel wells and beefy tires, this truck has a real presence – it’s not going to disappear amongst all the other SUV’s in the parking lot that’s for sure!
Honda’s 3rd generation of the very popular CR-V is by far the best looking one yet. As has become the norm in the automotive kingdom, each succeeding generation of vehicles brings with it improved safety, luxuries and dimensions. Honda hasn’t diverged from the norm in their design of the CR-V. One thing that stands out in this re-design is that this just isn’t a Honda CR-V, but an Acura CR-V. This is a baby Acura SUV in every way imaginable – including the price. From the intoxicating smell of the leather interior to the quality feel throughout, Honda have really kicked it up a notch with the 2008 Acura – I mean Honda CR-V.
When I first saw the MX-Crossport Concept Vehicle (now known as the Mazda CX-7) at the Toronto International Auto Show 18 months ago, I thought it was a nice looking, but impractical SUV/Concept vehicle. I was somewhat surprised when I saw the actual pre-production version at this past February’s Auto Show. It doesn’t look like any other SUV on the road today. It’s not boxy and generic-looking, it’s actually more Sport than Utility looking. From the front, it looks a lot like the Mazda RX-8 sports car – especially if you’re looking at it through your rear-view mirror. It certainly looks like its got zoom – but does it have Zoom-Zoom? Oh yeah, it goes like stink!
Hyundai’s smallest SUV, the Tucson was released just last year. Although smaller than the Santa Fe, its pricing is very closely matched to its big brother. That will probably change when the all-new, bigger 2007 Santa Fe comes out later this year. First Impressions Hyundai has come a long way since they came to North America back in the mid-80’s. Mimicking the Japanese manufacturers, Hyundai have always offered quality at a low cost, and just like the Japanese, as the quality of the vehicles and materials improved over the years – so the cost of purchasing the vehicle has moved in-step. Having said that, the cost of a Hyundai SUV is still less than comparable vehicles from Honda, Nissan and Toyota. So they’re cheaper to purchase – but are they any good?
Attention Auto Manufacturers: If you cannot build an SUV that as a bare minimum beats the quality, fit and finish – and with the same safety and standard features of the Suzuki Grand Vitara – then you’re not doing it right! THIS is the new benchmark all other small and midsize SUV’s have to be judged against. I’ve driven quite a few SUV’s over the past couple of years, but the Grand Vitara really does stand out like no other.