Kia has come a long way, baby. The new Nero is a cool little car that promises a lot of niceties in its hybrid packaging.
New in 2018, it carries over mostly unchanged for 2019. This means it’s a well-put-together hybrid will all the goodies you’d expect from Kia.
The nose is very Kia-esque, with the familiar, almost kidney-like grill, flanked by the headlights and turn signals. The profile is of a small hatchback, not an SUV as you might expect, with a prominent character line and lower rub strip. Out back there is a generously-sized hatch with large tail lights And a blacked-out license plate area. And don’t forget the large spoiler that finishes off the sporty look.
Inside is a comfy cabin will all the modern accoutrements you’d expect with almost any newer hybrid like a trick instrument cluster that can show you how much, or not, you are driving economically and saving the planet with bright green leaves, or barren twigs.
Pricing for the Niro starts just under $23,500 and goes up to over $32,000 for the top-of-the-line…without options.
Announced back in January, the upcoming 2019 Ford Ranger is a stunner and the news keeps getting …better? Pricing was recently announced and it’s not great but could be a lot worse.
Base XL 4X2 models will start at $24,300, XLT at $27,940, and Lariat at $32,210. And, each comes with a $1,095 destination charge. Ouch.
These prices are a little more expensive than some of Ranger’s competitors, especially the lowest model. The Nissan Frontier, for example, starts at $18,990. The Chevy Colorado starts at $20,200. On the flip side, the Toyota Tacoma starts at $25,400 and the Honda Ridgeline, though not really a full-fledged pickup truck as we know it, starts at $29,990.
So, the new Ranger is not the least expensive option but is also not the most expensive, at least to start.
Top-end Lariat Rangers start at $32,210 and can top out above $45,000.
It’s a good-looking truck and anticipation is growing for its release.
So my last post had a blurb about other car companies who use the tagline “the first ever” and I said that I thought Infiniti used it in a recent ad. Well, as I was watching a ubiquitous car show on Velocity I saw probably the ad I was thinking of….
The first time I noticed it was when the Pontiac G6 came out. The ad tagline was “The First Ever Pontiac G6”, or something very similar. Then it seemed like more new GM vehicles used it in their ads, including the 2016 Cadillac XT5 crossover SUV. Now, other car companies like Infiniti have jumped on the bandwagon.
Please stop saying “First ever”!
I’m not sure why this has me so rankled but know that it has. Maybe it’s because it seems like PR/Advertising laziness or maybe it’s just kind of annoying, like the phrase “it is what it is”. Whatever the case, it needs to stop now! All new cars are the first ever! You don’t need to spell it out in your advertising!
But seriously, the more you call a new car a first ever the more annoying, watered down and un-special that phrase becomes. It’s the automotive equivalent of YOLO and it needs to die a quick painless death form the automotive advertising lexicon.
The original Dart was a stylish (for the time) car but it was killed off in the mid-70s. The irony is that in its first few years of life the Dart was a full-size sedan. Its 3rd year brought something interesting; they shrank it, making it into a compact car…something that is pretty unheard of today!
I was pretty sad when I heard that FCA was killing off the Dodge Dart and Chrysler 200. They seemed like very well put together cars that were also stylish and fun to drive. But unfortunately, the car landscape is changing and with low gas prices all around people are buying more small or medium crossovers than passenger cars, not even taking pickups into consideration as the Ford F-150 is still the top selling vehicle in the US some 30+ years running. Another factor is ease of ingress/egress in today’s crossovers compared with small sedans and the amount of money car makers are putting into the small crossover realm.
The real shame is that FCA has that styling thing down pat. Good looks and sporting intentions abound in the lineup and the Dart is no slouch in either aspect. We got to drive a Dart in a closed-loop urban setting and were happily surprised with how well it handled and how nice the car actually is.
With plenty of power on tap from the start, we were able to get through city traffic with little effort and the suspension soaked up the bumps with ease.
Surprisingly quick and very comfortable. The interior is very nice and the instrument cluster is top-notch. Seriously, the design of these is crazy good.
Look to pick up one starting at $22095. Just hurry as the Dart is short on life these days.
After finally watching the entire launch video…the uncomfortableness of Elon Musk on a stage, which is actually a little comical, was mostly palatable…I have to admit that there are two things that I missed in my previous post.
Firstly, that front end. From the front three-quarter view it’s not bad but straight head on it’s…weird. There’s a great expanse of nothingness under the badge and the opening that surrounds it down to the widely dark and foreboding opening just above the air dam. It just seems that it was cut off too short, adding to the egg look of the vehicle. It is definitely not as profound as the Model S and maybe that’s why it seems odd. It’s just a flat surface heading into the wind that is guaranteed to be a great bug collector in the Summer months.
The second thing I missed was all the storage space in the thing. I should have known that Tesla wouldn’t let the buying public down and they sure didn’t. There is space under the second row of seats, much like a on an airplane, with room for backpacks or other small bags. There is also a deep well in the rear hatch area that seems deep enough to handle large bags and suitcases. I think the only thing you can’t really do is haul a yard of dirt in it…I hope someone proves me wrong on that one!
In the ever-increasing world of exotic cars, meaning low volume and non-standard drivetrains and not your run-of-the-mill Ferrari or Lamborghini, there is a new player who is bringing something different to the table by the way of electricity. The company is called nanoFlowcell and that car is the Quant e-Sportlimosine and soon-to-be-announced redesign called Quant F.
The technology used in the Quant cars is the nanoFlowcell battery. This particular type of battery creates electricity using two ionic fluids, one positively and one negatively charged, and electrolytes to complete the reaction. The interesting part is that the electrolytes are what need replacing when the “fuel” gets low. The ionic fluids are stored in two tanks, each with about 66 gallons of fluid. The nanoFlowcell takes the two ionic fluids and along with the electrolytes, create electricity…enough electricity to push the Quant F to a range of almost 500 miles! The top speed of the Quant F is about 186 miles per hour but since this is a prototype, there has been no real data on how the Quant will perform in the real world.
A four-seater, the Quant F is designed to take its occupants wherever they want to go in style and comfort.
The announcement of the economy of the Quant and it’s technology begs the question: Should Tesla and the rest of the automotive world be afraid?