What Automobiles Would You Like To See Us Review Next Year?

Discussion in 'Website news & discussions' started by xcel, Nov 6, 2010.

  1. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi All:

    Just passing along what I have already put in which means we may see ¼ of the list but you never know.

    11 Audi A3 TDI
    11 BMW X5d (the Diesel)
    12 Buick Regal GS w/ the 6-speed stick
    11 Chevrolet Cruze ECO w/ the 6-speed stick
    11 Chevrolet Volt
    11 Ford Fiesta SFE or the 5-speed stick
    11 Ford Edge or Explorer with the 2.0L ECOBoost
    11 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid
    11 Lincoln MKZ Hybrid
    11 Mazda2 with 5-speed stick
    11 Mercedes Benz E350 BluTec (the Diesel)
    11 Mitsubishi iMiEV
    11 Nissan LEAF
    11 Smart ED
    11 Toyota Prius PHEV
    11 VW Jetta TDI with either the 6-speed stick or 6-speed DSG AT

    Anything else you might like to see?

    Thanks in advance

  2. MaxxMPG

    MaxxMPG Hasta Lavista AAA-Vee Von't Be Bach

    Not sure if the list should include cars not yet for sale, but will be by next summer. If the "coming soon" cars count, add in:
    2012 Ford Focus
    2012 Hyundai Elantra
    2012 Chevy Aveo (bow-tied Opel Corsa with either 1.2L or 1.4L Fam-0 engine)
    And if it appears to be geared correctly and if it arrives here within the next 13 months - 2012 Honda Civic

    Point of interest on the Cruze Eco... The option list on early brochures is listing 6AT as optional for the Eco. If the brochure is correct, I have to wonder if it would be an interesting comparison of Cruze 1LT 6AT vs Cruze Eco 6AT to determine exactly what the air shutter, Volt tire/wheel combo, lowered ride height and weight reduction add up to. I would assume the ATs are geared the same and that the EPA numbers for the AT would suffer accordingly. But I think it would be an eye opener to see what drag, weight, and tire/wheel RR reductions can do for the cars when they are driven properly. The particular comparo test can't happen with the 6MT because other than the Eco, the only other 6MT is a shorter-geared transaxle bolted to the 1.8, making the test an apple/orange mismatch. But it would show how the cumulative improvements add up to a different EPA rating and how much extra they offer to those who are willing to put them to good use.
  3. seftonm

    seftonm Veteran Staff Member

    F-150 EcoBoost
  4. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Chris:

    I have requests in to attend the Focus and Elantra Long Lead but I think we'll have some good coverage on the 11 Elantra after our visit to LA thanks to Hyundai’s "Special Event" for "Special Guests" invite on the evening of Day 1 :)

    Regarding the 11 Cruze ECO w/ an AT, I am not going to request that one as I know it would not compete with the Cruze ECO with a stick, the 11 Fiesta w/ a Stick, 12 Focus w/ a stick, the 11 Mazda2 w/ a stick, the 09 Corolla XRS w/ a stick, the 11 Hyundai Sonata w/ a stick… I simply hate posting embarrassing numbers for any mfg.

    After my drive of the 11 Cruze w/ the 6-speed AT at the MAMA Fall Rally last month, it allowed a respectable but not overly rewarding for the effort, 48.9 mpg RT average on the RT 9.9 mile loop using NICE-On’s IIRC. My Vehicle Review notebook is in the car at this time so I am trying to recall the exact tenth of an mpgUS. The Cruze w/ the AT’s aFCD did not update after the first FAS so that was problematic as well. The 11 Mazda2 w/ a stick allowed 62.x something on the same RT course if that gives you any idea as to my reasoning?

    Anyway, the Cruze ECO with an AT would be an underachiever by comparison to other vehicles in its class and just like the 08 Malibu that I only blogged vs. reviewed due to the AT hampering its capability (i.e. poor results), I would not want to intentionally embarrass GM knowing full well the probable outcome due to the AT’s limitations against its far more capable brethren, the Cruze ECO with the stick and the rest with the same. AT’s really suck when it comes to the decent numbers other than the Accord and the Diesel’s.

  5. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Mike:

    Did you see the CleanMPG at the 2011 Ford F-150 Press Launch w/ the 3.5L EcoBoost Preview additions? I still have to add the final impressions but you can tell from the pics what was going on in Dallas that day ;)

    The 2011 CBR250R or one of its siblings (2011 CRF250L or M maybe :D) is definitely on my list for the 2011 LA Auto Show if I can find a way out there next year! A Press Preview would be better but I doubt Honda will have a Long Lead Press Launch for it as they appear only to be spending PR $’s on the big bikes?

    Any other?

  6. JusBringIt

    JusBringIt Be Inspired

    oooo he's gonna be mad...

    Fiat 500
    Dodge Hornet
  7. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Ricardo:

    Ok, the Fiat 500 then :p

  8. Damionk

    Damionk DWL Lover

    A dealer in the next town over just got the Cruze, I was thinking about taking it out just for fun.
  9. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Super Moderator Staff Member

    The Aptera. I'd like to know how good it is and I'd like it to get from vaporware to production. Like many here I'd kind of like a motorcycle without the danger or the aerodynamic penalty.
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2010
  10. Right Lane Cruiser

    Right Lane Cruiser Penguin of Notagascar

  11. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Sean:

    The Fisker is all yours :D

    INATM, I doubt we are going to see an Aptera in the Chicago area this coming year? I hope we do but it is a BEV and with the LEAF and upcoming Focus already or almost here, I do not have a lot of hope.

    Last edited: Nov 7, 2010
  12. seftonm

    seftonm Veteran Staff Member

    Hi Wayne, I did see that preview. Great work, but I'd really like to read more and hear what the F-150 will give for FE when being worked as a truck, pulling a load for a few hundred miles on the highway or something like that. Maybe then repeat the same unloaded.
  13. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Mike:

    I have a 5,000 pound dual axle landscape trailer ready to pull but I do not really have the $'s to afford the fuel for a 200 + mile tow drive for a review. Towing 6,700 pounds in an enclosed dual axle trailer in Dallas did allow the EcoBoost to achieve 11.x mpgUS vs. the Dodge RAM w/ the 5.7L V8 HEMI's 10.x something per the Preview and of course the all-out FE Challenge drive in the 3.5L ECOboost F-150 allowed 30 mpgUS into a 20 + mph headwind as well. I have no idea what the 3.7L or the ECOboosted 3.5L are really worth when pushed under more normal conditions. I suspect both may prove to be more fuel efficient than the 6.7L Super Duty and that darn thing provided 35 mpgUS on a RT drive around Chicago this past spring!

    One of the Ford F-Series PR reps just yesterday E-Mailed me with a request to call her on Monday as Ford may have something in mind for us in the near future. And just maybe your idea will fit into whatever they have in mind as well?

    I am a big fan of the Ford F-Series products but only if they are used a large percentage of the time in a manner that they were designed for. It is still pretty darn cool sitting in a vehicle that you can in no way touch the passenger side door while sitting in the driver’s seat, climb and descend 20 degree slopes off-road without a care in the world, drive over curbs or other mundane impediments that may be in your way, haul your house down the road and do so with the ability to carry 6 plus two weeks’ worth of everyone’s gear in the bed and still achieve 30 mpg + if you were so inclined.

    What the hell, I’ll ask to take a 3.5L EcoBoost out with a trailer towing package and see how she does as you have me interested now too.

  14. ILAveo

    ILAveo Well-Known Member

    I got over the "big is pretty darn cool part" once I started using a 2004 F350 for work most of the time (though I've no experience with the 30mpg part.)

    "Cool" is driving a vehicle that I can turn around with fewer than four maneuvers in the McDonald's parking lot after lunch ;).

    I'm not shopping the Minivan/SUV/Crossover kid hauler market segment, but it seems like you should review a competitor to the Ford entry to help draw conclusions (e.g. How is the Equinox compared to the Edge?).
  15. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Rich:

    I have an Edge/Explorer on request, both with the 2.0L EcoBoost offerings. I will not take out a 3.5L no matter what.

    Regarding GM, they are a funny lot? I have sent in lengthy detailed proposals for drives, requests for Press Cars and have even spoken with many of the PR reps and lead managers at length and in person and have been dissed at almost every turn. We were completely blown off for both the Cruze and Volt launch so I do not know where to go with that? They even had EV groups from different states flown in for that one with circulation of 0 and we were left out of the loop :(

    Just recently and after 5 very lengthy and detailed E-Mails and reply’s including a two page Bio regarding a Volt drive, I was offered a ride from Detroit to Chicago. It was just a month ago that the E-Mail flurry was occurring and they could only allow this drive on the 15th. I was already scheduled to be in Del Ray, FL for the CT200h launch and there is no way anyone would ever cancel a Press Launch once tickets are purchased? Not if I ever want to go on a Press Launch for Lexus ever again!

    One of the newer GM Volt reps had a date just after the LA Auto Show Press Event to drive it from Chicago to a new location so it could be reinserted back into their Volt Tour. That was dropped after my second reply with Yes, I will do it! All my E-Mails had a note of desperation and goals that would put this CD and CS mode problem they are having to bed. One of the newer PR Reps was really trying and she was probably told, no dice for this guy??? During all of this, I even requested a Volt for just a weekend so I could do a presentation on it for the Milwaukee Hybrid Group and 50 individuals two weekends ago. We would have had local TV and Newspaper coverage and a packed house if I could have pulled it off. The meet featured the Hyundai Sonata Hybrid instead which is a great car but it is not a Volt of course :( For that request, I said I would pick the car up in Detroit on late Friday afternoon from anyone and anywhere and have it back in Detroit on a Sunday afternoon. All on my own dime. GM said they could not do it because they were all being used? A single Volt prototype that is surely in an Exec’s hands and I only needed it for a weekend? Maybe there were no Volt's available but it felt and sounded a bit fishy is all.

    After all of that, they said they will have a Volt inserted in the Chicago Press Fleet soon enough. I said please do not place it in the fleet during the middle of winter. I wrote about one journalists drive in a two-mode where she got 12 mpg for the week and she is a really good friend of the Chicago GM PR Rep. She writes a good review but the numbers she receives are pretty bad. I requested that they wait until spring because most Chicago area journalists are notorious for bringing in some of the worst numbers imaginable and seeing a Volt with a 21 mile CD mode AER and a 23 mpg drive under CS mode is not what I would call “Good Press”. This paragraph is quite literally what I sent due to the outcome I know will occur and who knows if it will be taken to heart or not?

    Going back, the Malibu Blog was not damning by any means and the Yukon Two-Mode Preview was one of the best write-ups on the net at the time and I only had an afternoon in it! I have no idea why the Spy vs. Spy thing is going on with them. The two-Mode was handled through another media outlet (Men’s Health) that had me out for an interview w/ an editor who now works for C&D and the Ride and Drive was behind the biggest Hybrid of them all at the time which was part of "their" story. GM did not go out of their way for us on that one either but did provide an engineer exec and mid-level marketing guy I (we) could speak with for background. It was really a good lunch and the vehicle was far more capable than the GM or other media outlets were giving it credit for.

    [fimg=left]http://www.cleanmpg.com/photos/data/523/2008_Chevrolet_Tahoe_2-Mode_Hybrid_-_Preview.jpg[/fimg]2008 GMC Yukon Two-Mode Preview: 29 mpg around town and I was seeing over 35 mpg on the highway in 30 degree temps.

    In any case, my statements (pro or con) throughout the forum are usually backed up with facts or innuendo laced with truth which makes me wonder if GM has some sort of blacklist type issue going on? It is unfortunate as we were are probably the number two or three outlet covering the Volt over the years let alone none of their other vehicles have provided big numbers for them because they give them to outlets that do not know the difference between the brake and the accelerator pedal? The request for the 12 Regal GS the other day went un-replied to but it was close to the weekend and the 11 Cruze ECO remains an open promise that at some point we may see in the future???

    I wonder if when MotorWeek, C&D, R&T and MT to name put a few calls or E-Mails into GM for a vehicle if they have to jump through all of these hoops with rejection 80 + % of the time?

    Between juggling cats by requesting a variety of vehicles, sending out new drive proposals, signing up everyone for Auto and Motorcycle Show Press Events, trying to find at least 10-stories for the home page 7-days a week and filling the forum when it needs some activity, it is frustrating at times. Enough of the behind the scenes look at what I do during the day, evening, night and early morning including crying in my beer (which I do not drink by the way), the new Equinox is good for possibly 40 to 45 + mpg but I will never know? The Silverado HD is probably good for 30 + mpg and with full tanks, would probably make it across the country on less than two fill-ups! But again, we will never know?

    And about the HD full sized P/U trucks, I am not sure if you remember the post or not but when confronted with a half mile ahead for a U-Turn or climb over a cement median/curb immediately and be on my way in the 11 F-250 Super Duty w/ the Power Stroke this past spring, it dawned on me I was in a truck that has climbed over stuff you would not take a tank over at the Press Launch and so I did, it worked and I had one of those “Ah Ha” moments. Really cool does not come close to describing the feeling or the smile on my face after that little maneuver in Chicago. Those large P/U’s have much smaller TR’s than the older ones but your right, you would not want to perform a 5-point turn in one when trying to leave a McDonald’s parking lot due to their sheer length, that is for sure.

    Last edited: Nov 8, 2010
  16. Right Lane Cruiser

    Right Lane Cruiser Penguin of Notagascar

    Wayne, it may simply be that GM refuses to work with group (CleanMPG) that doesn't have widely circulated name recognition (MT, etc). That doesn't make it right but seems more likely than some sort of blacklist.
  17. xcel

    xcel PZEV, there's nothing like it :) Staff Member

    Hi Sean:

    I hope that is the case. When I saw who was flown into Detroit to drive Volt's last month, my radar went up. Some of those groups have 0 exposure where we at least put up over 1-million and in some months, over 2-million pages per month on a somewhat consistent basis. We are being read but probably not nearly as much as like you said, the MT, AW, R&T groups and such.

    I can also say you should see who is following the twitter feed. There are some heavy hitters amongst that group with an automobile CEO just signing up (I will not say when but recently ;)) so we are being looked at with regards to our daily fuel efficient/energy efficient/general interest automobile and other news.

    In any case, we plod on by making requests when it seems appropriate and send out proposals when it seems appropriate and do what we do because we do it pretty well I think? I hope so anyways?

    I am friends with one of the Chrysler reps, Wendy O., and although we have covered 0 Chrysler products, she knows of my great interest in the 500 as every month I ask her about it. I hope we get a chance to drive that one when it finally arrives as I am more curious than anything about its actual size and capabilities. The history itself is going to be a neat 2 to 3-paragraph edition to that Preview/Review but it’s the Multiair engine that is intriguing me right now.

    Good Luck

  18. warthog1984

    warthog1984 Well-Known Member

    Bikes. Lots and Lots of bikes.

    The CBR250 will be eagerly awaited as will any similar high-perf/high-mpg offerings.

    And should the Empulse meet its Summer 2011 delivery schedule, you may safely assume they'll be wiping my drool off the first-delivery units.

    I'd say the Aprilia RS4 125 (the new 4-stroker) since a highway-capable 1/8 liter US-version sportbike would be great, but due date isn't until Late 2011.

    PS- the current 2-stroke RS 125 seems to pull very well up to ~65-70mph and top out above the ton in the nonrestricted version. Additionally, bore kits can bump displacement to 153cc, 3cc above Interstate restrictions in IL.
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2010
  19. Ophbalance

    Ophbalance Administrator Staff Member

    Probably not a popular choice, but I'd love to see what you could do with a Kia Soul. I've pointed it out to my wife, and although the reaction was "never in my life", I'd still like to see what it can do.
  20. PaleMelanesian

    PaleMelanesian Beat the System Staff Member

    I'd like to see the Fiesta compared MT vs AT. If the AT is the "eco" option, I'd like to know, real-world, how capable it is compared to the manual.

    I second the request for the Elantra.

    Also, the new Prius big brother "whatever it is". I have no doubt you're planning that one already. ;)

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