The Subaru Outback strikes an interesting balance between the needs of the everyday crossover shopper and the wants of car enthusiasts. It’s more of a tall wagon than a proper CUV, and even with its 2.5-liter boxer-four and continuously variable transmission, it’s pretty nice to drive. Brandon Turkus explains in his review, here.
Finally – something new from Scion is on the horizon. Kind of. Teased today, Toyota’s youthful-ish brand will be bringing the new iM to this year’s Los Angeles Auto Show, though it’s kind of hard to tell exactly what’s in store. Scion claims it’s a pretty sporty offering, but we’ll have to wait and see. In the meantime, check out these first few teasers.
The big Takata airbag recall keeps getting bigger, and there’s a new, updated list of affected models now available for your perusal. Unfortunately, the there still seem to be a number of inaccuracies, and NHTSA’s own VIN-lookup site is overwhelmed by this situation. Read through the latest installment of the Takata saga, here.
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Unfortunately, the government’s list still contains errors.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued an updated list of vehicle models that it’s urging owners to repair under the mushrooming Takata airbag inflator recall. The latest version adds vehicles from new automakers like Subaru and Ford that are missing from the original announcement, and it also removes erroneous entries from General Motors, leaving only the 2005 Saab 9-2X (a reskinned Subaru WRX), and the 2003-2005 Pontiac Vibe, a joint project with Toyota.
According to a statement sent to Autoblog by GM, the inaccurate entries on the earlier version came because, “The original NHTSA advisory incorrectly listed a group of 2002-2003 GM models that were part of a 2002 recall involving airbags made by other suppliers.”
This campaign has been spurred by recent discoveries from Takata about the risks from these inflators. It’s possible for the airbags to rupture in a crash and spray shrapnel at occupants. The problem is known to have caused serious injuries and several deaths, and the likelihood of a malfunction has been determined to be especially likely in high humidity areas.
The recalls related to the faulty parts go back to at least 2001, and most of the vehicles on the latest list are also among the same ones from a campaign in June. Since this isn’t a new recall and NHTSA is simply urging people to take action, it’s possible some of these models might already be repaired.
NHTSA appears to be having serious problems with the stress the Takata airbag issue is putting on its consumer website. According to The Detroit News, the agency’s VIN lookup service is down, and its daily listing of new recalls is also not working as of this writing.
Unfortunately, the government’s list still contains errors.
NHTSA releases updated Takata airbag recalled cars list, but it still has errors originally appeared on Autoblog on Wed, 22 Oct 2014 13:31:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
It was just a few weeks ago that Subaru unveiled its refreshed 2015 Impreza with refinements like a tweaked front fascia, upgraded infotainment system, standard rearview camera, slightly better fuel economy and other goodies. The Japanese automaker has finally decided to tell us what all of this new kit costs, and it actually hasn’t increased too much over last year.
A base model 2015 Impreza 2.0i sets back buyers $18,195 for the four-door sedan or $18,695 for the five-door hatch (*not including $795 destination and delivery on all models). All of those prices are $300 more than the 2014 model year.
Moving up to the Premium trim requires $20,995 for the sedan or $21,495 for the five-door and adds 16-inch wheels, heated seats, heated mirrors and a windshield wiper de-icer. The Sport Premium pack, offered exclusively on the hatch, goes further with features like body-color side sills, 17-inch wheels, foglights, and more for $20,995 with the five-speed manual or $21,995 with the CVT.
Finally, the top-tier Limited trim on either the sedan or five-door and the Sport Limited on the hatch are priced at $22,295, $22,795 and $23,295, respectively. They get luxuries like leather seats, a seven-inch infotainment system, LCD display in the gauge cluster and extra chrome trim.
The Limited trims are also the only place where Subaru’s EyeSight system is an option. Ticking the box adds adaptive cruise control, pre-collision braking and lane departure warning, and it comes packaged with navigation, a moonroof, keyless start and fog lights that respond to steering for $2,795.
Power across the lineup is still provided by Subaru’s 2.0-liter boxer four-cylinder with 148 horsepower and a choice of either a five-speed manual or CVT, which is standard on the Premium and Limited trims. The 2015 Impreza starts hitting dealers in November, and you can scroll down to read the full pricing announcement.
Refreshed 2015 Subaru Impreza priced from $18,195* originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 10 Oct 2014 10:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
We love Motor Trend‘s annual World’s Greatest Drag Race video. Now back for its fourth appearance, the idea of lining some of the world’s fastest cars up for a ten-wide, straight-line, full-throttle run is, well… it’s pretty freaking badass.
The lineup this year boasts some impressively fast cars to be sure. The group of ten includes the following darlings: Alfa Romeo 4C, BMW i8, BMW M4, Chevrolet Camaro Z/28, Ford Fiesta ST, Jaguar F-Type R Coupe, Nissan GT-R Nismo, Porsche 911 Turbo S, Subaru WRX STI and, last but not least, the Volkswagen GTI. Give us any one of those for the weekend, and we’re happy to take the keys.
It must be said though, that for a publication that draws as much water as Motor Trend does, there are some big cars that we might expect to be here instead. The Lamborghini Hurac
People tend to get very set in their ways when it comes to the pronunciation of words. Just look at the endless debates over whether or not to say the final ‘e’ in Porsche (which you should in terms of correct German enunciation). Or the argument about whether to follow the British convention and give the ‘u’ in Jaguar a special delivery or to say the ‘ua’ diphthong as more of a ‘w’ sound, as usually happens in the US.
This short video doesn’t answer either of those automotive questions, but it does allow a native Japanese speaker to demonstrate the accepted pronunciations for several, major automakers from the country. One benefit is that it clears up the occasional debate over whether Nissan should be said with a long or short ‘i’ sound. Also, listen closely to how the female host says Mazda as Matsuda, the way it’s actually said in the language. Even if this doesn’t change the way you enunciate these brands, at least now you know the accurate way in Japanese.
Ever wonder how to really pronounce Japanese automaker names? originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 25 Sep 2014 20:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
While our love for the Subaru Impreza is mostly reserved for its turbocharged WRX and STI models, there’s still a fully competent, well-rounded package in the base model, now in its fourth generation. In order to keep it competitive, Subaru has given the Impreza a light refresh for the 2015 model year, and while the car hasn’t changed much mechanically, there are a number of thoughtful updates in store for the revised model.
Most noticeably, the front end has been touched up, with a revised lower fascia that’s a bit more aggressive than before, nicely incorporating foglamps on higher-end models. Around back, not much has changed, though there’s a new lip spoiler on sedan models to improve aerodynamics. Inside, a new infotainment system is available, with a seven-inch color touchscreen, and Subaru’s EyeSight driver assistance package can now be had on the Limited models. There’s also an updated instrument cluster with an LCD color display, new door and shifter trim, a standard rearview camera, and a few tuning enhancements that allow for a quieter ride, according to Subaru’s release.
Under the hood is the same 2.0-liter boxer four-cylinder engine as before, with 148 horsepower on tap, mated to either a five-speed manual or continuously variable transmission. Subaru notes that there’s a quicker ratio for the electronic power-assisted steering (that’s a good thing), and reminds us that the Impreza is still pretty fuel-efficient considering its standard all-wheel drive, able to achieve 28 miles per gallon in the city, 37 mpg highway and 31 mpg combined.
Have a look at the updated Impreza four- and five-door models in the gallery above, and scan the press blast below for even more details.
2015 Subaru Impreza gets visual tweaks, added refinement originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 25 Sep 2014 09:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
There’s an evergreen debate among auto enthusiasts about whether they would prefer to have the latest and greatest car of today or a certified classic from yesteryear. What if you had to further define that, though, and the choice was between a brand new 2015 Subaru Legacy or a turbocharged Datsun 240Z with a hatch that wouldn’t close? Roadkill aimed to find out that and more in one of its best videos to date.
According to the hosts, Subaru came to them, handed over some money and challenged Roadkill‘s project cars against its latest Legacy. The result is every bit as good (or better) than any automotive-themed show you could find on television.
Things start simple with a figure-eight race in a rodeo arena with the Subaru taking on Roadkill‘s 1968 Ford Ranchero, originally built for ice racing. From there the Legacy races a 1968 Dodge Charger with no windows around and off-road rally stage. Finally, the Subie goes head-to-head against the Rotsun, the aforementioned turbocharged 240Z, through an abandoned neighborhood. Plus, there’s a bonus drag race challenging them all.
Everyone involved in this seems to be having more fun at work than many people have all year, and that positive feeling is incredibly infectious. From the hosts all the way to the instructor at the rally school, everyone is smiling and laughing practically the whole time. Enjoy, this is a good one.
Subaru Legacy pitted against Roadkill project cars originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 05 Sep 2014 20:04:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.
Is bigger really better? That’s the question we’re asking in our review of the long-wheelbase Infiniti Q70L. The luxury brand’s 5 Series-fighter gains some rear spaciousness among other tweaks for the 2015 model year, and we see if this added capaciousness adds to the sedan’s appeal. Read all about it in our quick spin.
The Land Rover LR2 is dead! Long live the Land Rover LR2! With its new Discovery Sport, Land Rover finally has a truly competitive offering in the midsize luxury crossover set, ready to battle stalwarts like the BMW X3 and Audi Q5. We’ve got the full smattering of details about the new compact LR. Check it all out, here.
Despite the on-again, off-again rumors, it looks like Subaru might be building a five-door version of its new WRX after all. Our trusty spy photographers caught this ‘Rex-ified mule testing, leading us to believe there will be even more to love about our favorite little Subie in the not-too-distant future.
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A month after originally teasing it, Subaru is finally unveiling its WRX S4 model for Japan. It’s a bit more than just a plush take on the sport sedan, because Subaru is fitting a more powerful version of the 2.0-liter, turbocharged boxer four-cylinder engine than we get on these shores.
The company says that S4 stands for “‘Sports performance’, ‘Safety performance’, ‘Smart driving’ and ‘Sophisticated feel,” and it certainly looks like this Rex ticks all of those boxes. The most surprising feature is the Japanese model’s 2.0-liter turbo engine boasting 296 horsepower (221 kilowatts) and 295 pound-feet (400 Newton-meters) of torque in this application. That’s quite a healthy upgrade over the 268 hp and 258 lb-ft that Americans get in the standard WRX, and it’s even nipping at the heels of the 305 hp and 290 lb-ft from the STI with a 2.5-liter mill that we get over here.
While extra power is always welcome, enthusiasts might not be so thrilled that Subaru’s Sport Lineartronic Continuously Variable Transmission is the sedan’s only available gearbox. However, it offers a simulated eight-speed shifting mode when drivers notch the car into Sport# driving mode. Of course, the S4 also packs Subie’s trademark all-wheel drive with Vehicle Dynamics Control and Active Torque Vectoring as standard.
Additional noteworthy differences include firmer steering box mounts for better feel and an electronic parking brake, a move that will likely delight commuters as it offends handbrake turn artists. The chassis and body have likewise received attention, with additional high-tensile steel and strengthened joints. Subaru says the bodywork as has actually been lightened in the process, though it isn’t immediately clear how.
Looking at the S4, the appearance differences are fairly minor compared to its US counterpart. The grille and lower air dam get completely filled in with silver mesh, and it has a somewhat different 18-inch wheel design. Inside, drivers are nestled into sport seats and grip a flat-bottom steering wheel. Red stitching and piano black trim finish off the interior looks to lend a sporty look.
For improved safety, the company’s latest Eyesight system boasts color recognition and a wider viewing angle than before. Systems like Pre-Collision Braking Control, Active Lane Keep steering assistance system and Adaptive Cruise Control are also available. Scroll down to read Subaru’s full announcement of this tech-packed WRX for Japan.