The weather's nice, and the kids are out of school. Time to pack up some gear and head out on the open road for summer fun. But what sort of car will hold the family and luggage for a weeklong excursion without costing an arm and a leg to gas up? We scoured our recent car reviews to find the best cars with modern tech to load up for a summer road trip.
BMW is replacing the Z4 coupe and soft-top roadster with a single model that has a retractable two-piece hardtop--a feature that will position the new Z4 better against luxury competitors, said Jim O'Donnell, CEO of BMW of North America.
"When we introduced the previous-generation Z4, we missed the mark a bit," O'Donnell said.
The original Z3 roadster, which debuted in 1996 at a price less than $30,000, had a fabric roof.
"It was more affordable because we had four-cylinder engines back in those days, and it reached a mass audience," O'Donnell said. … Read more
The hardest part of reviewing the 2009 BMW 650i Convertible was looking at it. Well, that and using the horrid iDrive interface to cue up music, make phone calls, and set destinations on the navigation system. In fact, when it showed up in the garage, we were prepared to be unimpressed. But that good old BMW magic took over once we got it on the road, where its efficient and powerful engine delivered an exciting exhaust note, and its active suspension countered all the lateral Gs we threw at it.
The advantage of sitting in the 650i Convertible was not … Read more
Certain cars feature such atrocious designs that they become automotive legends. Think cars such as the AMC Pacer and Pontiac Aztek. In the last year, we've seen quirky designs that may reach such legendary status from the vaunted brands BMW, Acura, Porsche, Lamborghini, and Aston Martin. Some of these designs are attempts at entering the crossover segment, building an SUV with the fuel economy and ride quality of a car. Others attempt to expand model lineups dominated by sports cars, giving the prospective buyer who wants to add a baby seat an option. Take a look at these photos … Read more
We spend a lot of time evaluating the electronics in new cars, digging through navigation system menus, hooking up phones and iPods, and listening to audio systems. But occasionally we get to put these very same cars on the track, to find out how their performance technologies work under stress.
This year, we drove a wide variety of cars on the track at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. There was the new Hyundai Genesis Coupe and Chevrolet Camaro. We had familiar rides such as the BMW M3 and Acura TL SH-AWD. Then there were the race-bred cars, the Audi R8 and … Read more
In these supposedly more enlightened times, everyone wants to "go green" or be more "eco-friendly". Our hippie-minded friends at Livinggreenchannel.com have produced a video informing eco-minded drivers of a cool way to help the environment - the fully electric Mini Cooper E.
As is noted in the video, BMW has produced 500 electric Mini Coopers that will be available to Californians in 2009 based on the success of the 2008 electric Mini models that were produced. As if they weren't small enough before, the Mini Cooper E has no back seats as the extra … Read more
Are you the kind of person who likes to go really fast in a really big vehicle? Well, the boys from Bavaria have just the thing for you: the BMW X6 M.
Powered by BMW's twin-turbocharge gasoline V-8, and putting power to the wheels through the xDrive all-wheel drive system, the X6 M and its sibling the X5 M will get you where you're going in a hurry.
Those of us who scratched our heads at the oddball BMW X6 now have another genre-jumping vehicle to ponder.
The Acura ZDX concept starts with the MDX platform (and, most likely, its drive train) before being massaged into a coupelike profile. The ZDX features Acura's familiar cabin tech package, but with a few new tricks up its sleeve.
With all the emphasis on eco-friendly cars at recent auto shows, we didn't expect to see so many performance cars in New York.
But many automakers had souped-up versions of existing models on display, giving driving enthusiasts something to enjoy. Mercedes-Benz had an AMG version of its E-class and BMW made the X6 into an M. VW launched the new GTI and Nissan NISMO'd its 370Z. Honda even showed up with a Mugen-equipped Fit.
We were incredibly impressed by the diesel version of BMW's 3-series, although a lot of that had to do with the car's updated iDrive interface. But our heightened expectations for the diesel X5 were not met. Mileage was good, but not dramatically good, and trying to get through city streets felt like tug boat piloting. Worse, the diesel X5 is saddled with the old version of iDrive.