Sunday, November 18, 2018

John's view of the Lexus GS300


THE AUTO PAGE
By
John Heilig


  • MODEL: 2018 Lexus GS300  
  • ENGINE/TRANSMISSION: 2.0-liter turbocharged 4/8-speed automatic 
  • HORSEPOWER/TORQUE: 241 hp/258 lb.-ft. @ 1,650-4,400 rpm  
  • WHEELBASE: 112.2 in. 
  • LENGTH X WIDTH X HEIGHT: 193.5 x 72.6 x 56.7 in.  
  • TIRES: P235/45R18  
  • CARGO CAPACITY: 14.0 cu. ft.  
  • ECONOMY: 22 mpg city/32 mpg highway/18.7 mpg test 
  • FUEL TANK: 17.4 gal.  
  • CURB WEIGHT: 4,034 lbs.  
  • TOWING CAPACITY: Not recommended  
  • COMPETITIVE CLASS: Acura RLX, Dodge Charger, Nissan Maxima 
  • STICKER: $51,829 (includes $995 delivery, $4,524 options)  
  • BOTTOM LINE: The rebadged Lexus GS200t, now known as the GS300, is classic Lexus, with a quiet ride, very good performance, and familial Lexus styling and luxury.


            We had an opportunity to visit our grandson at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, and our vehicle for the visit was a 2018 Lexus GS300. This model was formerly labeled the GS200t to reflect its 2.0-liter turbocharged four cylinder engine, but it seemed more reminiscent of the old, original, LS400, with its quiet, smooth ride. It still sports the 2.0-liter four.
            Our journey took us through city streets in a college town as well as over Interstates and some more general suburban roads. In addition, we toured a few shopping centers with traffic that ranged from almost nonexistent to midtown New York rush hour in volume. The GS300 is equipped with standard blind spot monitor and rear cross traffic alert to help navigate this foolishness.
            The GS300 proved to be a comfortable driver on all roads. I was impressed with how well it managed through city traffic plus in tight parking garages where we had to make a quick U-turn. The car drove exceptionally well on Interstates, where there was no dearth of power, despite the small engine. The engine is rated at 241 horsepower, and it zipped us along quite well. 
            Other available engines are the 3.5-liter V6 in the GS350, a 3.5-liter Atkinson hybrid engine in the GS450h, and the GS F- Sport, with a slew of performance options.
            Adding to the comfortable ride are great front seats with good side support. The weather in Knoxville was at times chilly, so we appreciated the heated seats. Rear seat legroom is very good. My 6-1 grandson hopped in and immediately commented on the room. “Use that in your review,” he advised. 
            We were blessed with the same funky weather we thought we left in Pennsylvania, with occasional rain and a mix that couldn’t decide among rain, mist, downpour or sun. The rain sensing wipers took the wiper decision out of my hands. 
            Navigating through the infotainment screen requires the use of a Remote Touch Interface Controller on the center console. This controller has built-in indents to help you stop at points on the screen. I like it. There is a nice hand rest for the driver (or passenger) to be comfortable using it. The infotainment screen looks built in, rather than added on as it is in some cars. 
            In addition, the GS300 comes equipped with the Lexus Safety System and with pre-collision system and pedestrian detection, dynamic radar cruise control and the BSM. Needless to say, when you’re driving a new car in a different environment, all the safety equipment the manufacturer can add is well-received.
            Generally, I like the Lexus exterior styling, although I originally wasn’t a big fan of the spindle grille. My only complaint about the GS300 is that almost every time I entered the car I hit my head on the door frame, and I’m not that tall.
            The GS300 renews my admiration for Lexus. Let’s face it, most Lexus models are derivatives of Toyota models, but Lexus does an excellent job of improving the luxury and overall feel of the vehicles. Then GS300 is an excellent package, typical of what we have come to expect from Lexus.

(c) 2018 The Auto Page Syndicate

A well done blend, the Lexus GS300



We are aware of blended families, blended cultures and even blended recipes. Bumper2Bumpertv recently got some seat time in a Lexus that is a blend of luxury and performance.

Saturday, November 10, 2018

The Mustang GT gets some extra technology and torque.




WE WERE SUPPOSED TO GET A WEEK OF SEAT TIME IN THE MUSTANG BULLIT EDITION. BUT SOME WAYWARD DEBRIS FROM A CONSTRUCTION TRUCK FORCED US TO SETTLE FOR THE MUSTANG GT AND GUESS WHAT? WE HAD A BALL!!!

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

2018 Toyota Prius C


THE AUTO PAGE
By
John Heilig


  • MODEL: 2018 Toyota Prius c Four
  • ENGINE/TRANSMISSION: 1.5-liter DOHC 4/ECVT 
  • HORSEPOWER/TORQUE: 73 hp @ 4,800 rpm/82 lb.-ft. @ 4,000 rpm  
  • WHEELBASE: 100.4 in.  
  • LENGTH X WIDTH X HEIGHT: 159.8 x 67.5 x 58.7 in. 
  • TIRES: P195/50R16  
  • CARGO CAPACITY: 17.1 cu. ft.  
  • ECONOMY: 48 mpg city/43 mpg highway/43.3 mpg test  
  • FUEL TANK: 9.5 gal.
  • CURB WEIGHT: 2,530 lbs. 
  • TOWING CAPACITY: Not recommended 
  • COMPETITIVE CLASS: Chevrolet Spark, Honda Fit, Fiat 500
  • STICKER: $26,799 (includes $895 delivery, $919 options)
  • BOTTOM LINE: As the smallest of the Prius variants, the c is intended for city driving and as such isn’t totally comfortable on the highway.


            Because of its long history and its sales volume, the Toyota Prius is the benchmark among dedicated hybrids. Among its many variants you won’t find a performance Prius, but you will find all versions of the base Prius. 
            Our tester is the Prius c, originally intended to be the “city” version. As such it is slightly smaller in size than its cohorts, with a more conservative engine. It still offers outstanding fuel economy. 
            Also, our tester is the Prius c Four, the top-of-the-line among Prius c’s four grades. And the most expensive. Prius c’s range from a base of $20,630 for the One to $24,995 for the Four.
            However, even in the Four, power is modest from the 1.5-liter four at 73 horsepower and 82 lb.-ft. of torque. With the combination of the gasoline and electric combined, acceleration is decent, and power is acceptable. The engine tends to be a bit noisy at time, though.
            We took the Prius c on a turnpike trip with some fun local driving at the end. Our tester was a bright orange (Tangerine Splash Pearl, a $395 option), so there was no fear that we might be overlooked by the big semis. It was also easy to find in parking lots.
            There’s no mistaking this car for a Prius. The front end is the same as all the others with Toyota touches. The hatchback rear is reminiscent of a crossover, giving the c good cargo capacity (17.1 cubic feet) for a small car. In general, we found the cargo capacity to be adequate, but a trip to Costco forced us to lower the rear seat backs. 
            Front seats are comfortable. There’s a nice shelf in front of the passenger that’s great for phones. It even has USB and AUX outlets in it.
            The two cupholders are inconveniently located at the base of the center stack which can make it difficult for tall cups. The center console/arm rest is small, in keeping with the car’s compact size.
            Prius dash design has come a long way. Instead of a huge blank panel facing the driver, there is now some design there. The instrument panel is centrally located atop the dash with a digital speedometer and clock, outside temperature, economy and trip odometer and range. 
            Toyota’s Entune system provides entertainment. In addition, Toyota’s Star Safety System is standard in all four grades.
            The Toyota Prius c shows its mettle with its compact crossover design, offering practicality plus utility plus economy in its last year.

(c) 2018 The Auto Page Syndicate

Monday, November 5, 2018

The Armada is now on Patrol!!!



The eight passenger Nissan Armada has undergone a change from an SUV designed primarily for the North American market to something that has a global appeal. What’s different? Bumper2Bumpertv has a look.

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Ready for anything, the Jeep Wrangler Rubicon!



Make no mistake about it. The Jeep Wrangler is designed and built to go off road without a sweat. What makes it so tough? Bumper2Bumpertv has a look at some of its features hardened from years of experience.


Sunday, October 21, 2018

How smart is your new car? Really!!



In the past decade we have seen automotive technology evolve to nearly self-driving vehicles. While we are there quite yet Bumper2Bumpertv notes there is a lot of new tech stuff worth knowing about and how it impacts the driving experience.