September 10, 2014
It's almost an automotive cliché that German cars are "solid," that they deliver a certain gravity of sensory experience that other sedans don't always deliver.
It's the trunk thunk, the door close, the steering wheel feel, the buttons, dials and controls. All those little details add up to the feeling of a well-built car.
July 28, 2014
After staying in Chandler, Arizona for the night, it was off to Nissan's proving grounds in Stanfield the next morning to get some background information on the 2015 Nissan Murano.
July 24, 2014
Just as with our 5,000-mile update, it's continued to be smooth sailing, mechanically, up to the 10,000-mile mark for the 2014 Volkswagen Passat TSI.
July 10, 2014
I like to drive each of our long-term cars into the hills of nearby Palos Verdes to judge how easy or difficult they find the climb.
May 2, 2014
Driving the 2014 Volkswagen Passat TSI is a lot easier than I expected. Weighing in at a tad over 3,200 pounds, I was concerned the 1.8-liter four-cylinder 170-horsepower engine might come up a bit short, turbocharged or not.
No problem at all.
April 11, 2014
I spent last weekend in the car on the left, our 2014 Volkswagen Passat TSI, but what I'm about to say also applies to our silver 2013 Passat TDI on the right and (to some extent) even the 2014 BMW 3 Series GT in the center. All of these cars have a soft brake pedal feel, and it drives me a little nuts in normal driving situations.
April 8, 2014
It was Cesar Chavez Day in the state of California, and in Los Angeles, we commuters celebrate all holidays, however state or nationally recognized. They typically mean lighter traffic, and on my route, a chance to push the speedometer past 35 mph.
March 19, 2014
Our long-term 2014 Volkswagen Passat TSI's 1.8-liter turbocharged four-cylinder is one of the great engines out there, boasting energetic power and excellent fuel economy. It certainly seems well-suited to our big Passat, bringing it from zero to 60 mph in a quicker-than-average 7.7 seconds and thus-far returning 27 mpg (versus an EPA 28). Plus, it hasn't done many miles at this point, so future road trips could improve that number.
However, this engine gets even better in smaller vehicles. It's a major reason to buy the otherwise unremarkable Jetta, and was thoroughly impressive in a European-market Seat Leon I rented recently while on vacation in Switzerland.
February 27, 2014
When the current generation Volkswagen Passat debuted for 2012, its base engine, a 2.5-liter four-cylinder, was hardly a standout. For 2014, the competition is even better, and that sets up the 2.5 as an underperformer for both acceleration and fuel economy.
With the 2014 Passat's newly available turbocharged 1.8-liter engine, though, the game has changed.