RSS

Category Archives: Autos.ca

What I think: Buying a used Honda Accord

Honda has lost the plot, compared to its world-beating ways of the 1990s, its reputation tarnished by some reliability troubles and a few sales duds. The eighth-generation Honda Accord, however, seems to live up to the brand’s ideals — well, mostly. Click here for my Autos.ca used car review of the 2008-2012 Honda Accord.

 

What I think: Buying a used Subaru Impreza

This third-generation Impreza is a better all-around car than the versions that came before it, and, in some ways, it’s better than the redesigned 2012 model that replaced it. This car gets good reliability ratings from many sources, but continues to be haunted by the possibility of head gasket problems in its horizontally-opposed engine. Read my Autos.ca review here.

 

Tags: , , ,

What I think: Buying a used Ford Fusion

It’s a shame that this second-generation Ford Fusion hasn’t proven as durable as its predecessor. Read my Autos.ca used car review to learn what to watch out for.

 

Tags: , , , ,

What I think: About a bunch of vehicles

I’ve been lazy about updating lately, so here are links to a number of recent reviews of mine, published at Autos.ca:

Test Drive: 2012 Acura TSX V6 — A very nice sport sedan that nonetheless needs a serious dose of personality and a number of high-tech features that many most of its competitors offer.

Used Vehicle Review: Nissan Altima, 2007-2012 — As a Japanese company, Nissan has a reputation for building tough cars. It earned that in the 1980s and 90s, but its later models are less robust; the fourth-generation Altima mid-size sedan is a good example.

Used Vehicle Review: Lexus GS, 2006-2012 — Speaking of Japanese cars that don’t live up to the nation’s reputation for well-built cars, there’s the third-generation Lexus GS. Compared to the quality benchmark set by Lexus (and parent-company Toyota) in the 1990s, this car falls well short.

Used Vehicle Review: Mitsubishi Outlander, 2007-2012 — Then, there’s Mitsubishi, a company with plenty to prove. It’s proving it well, apparently, with the well-built Outlander crossover, an underrated vehicle that gets overlooked by many used-vehicle buyers.

Used Vehicle Review: Mazda Tribute, 2001-2011 — I always thought the Tribute was a stop-gap vehicle added to Mazda’s lineup to fill a gap until it designed its own crossover model. It was a near carbon-copy of the Ford Escape, and so inherited that vehicle’s positive traits — and its common flaws.

Used Vehicle Review: Nissan Frontier, 2005-2012 — Here’s a modern Nissan that seems more in line with the company’s reputation. The Frontier has a few common problems, but is generally a decent little truck.

Used Vehicle Review: Acura RDX, 2007-2012 — The RDX is Acura’s compact crossover, and the first-generation model is a quirky vehicle, for being the only Honda-built product to use a turbocharged engine. Common problems include air conditioning compressor failures, but the basics — engine, transmission and nifty all-wheel drive system — seem to be pretty tough.

 

What I think: 2012 Kia Rio

There’s a lot to like about the 2012 Kia Rio, including its sharp looks and fun handling. My main complaint are the optimistic fuel consumption estimates, which are nowhere close to what the car is capable of in real-world driving. Read my full Autos.ca review here.

 

What I think: Buying a used Hyundai Santa Fe

The second-generation Hyundai Santa Fe, produced between 2007 and 2012, is a good vehicle, but is more representative of the company in transition that Hyundai was then, and not the brand gunning for the top that it is now. Read my Autos.ca used vehicle review here.

 

What I think: Buying a used Hyundai Elantra Touring

Canadians seem to love compact SUVs and hatchbacks, but neither of those vehicle types can rival a small station wagon’s combination of utility and affordability. The Hyundai Elantra Touring, sold in Canada from 2009 through the 2012 model year (and due to be replaced in 2012 by the redesigned 2013 Elantra GT), is a great example of a simple, solid and (surprisingly) fun-to-drive wagon. Click on through to Autos.ca to read my opinion on buying a used one.

 

What I think: Buying a used Toyota Yaris

Toyota is in the midst of a cost-cutting campaign aimed at keeping this Japanese juggernaut competitive against aggressively-priced Korean cars, and the result is lower-quality vehicles in some cases. While the Internet suggests there are a few common flaws with the Yaris, organizations like Consumer Reports think Toyota’s smallest car is still a good choice for a budget-priced used vehicle, and I tend to agree. Read all about it in my latest used car review at Autos.ca.

 
 

What I think: 2012 Subaru Impreza

A redesigned car product is expected to be better than the one it replaces, and it usually works out that way with new cars. It’s a different story for the 2012 Subaru Impreza, a car that, at best, is as good as its predecessor, but is a move backwards in many respects. Click here to read my review at Autos.ca.

 
 

What I think: 2012 Chevrolet Volt

Ladies and gentlemen, I’d like to introduce you to the beginning of the end of gas-electric hybrid passenger vehicles as we know them.

Read the rest of this entry »