On this page you'll find the latest updates to our Long-Term Road Tests. The topics covered in these ongoing vehicle reviews range from things like fuel efficiency and comfort to highlights of specific features like GPS and audio technology. Check back frequently as our auto reviews are updated on a regular basis.
Where Did We Drive It? You could call August a quiet month for our 2018 Kia Stinger GT, with our team only adding about 1,000 miles to its digital odometer. No doubt the Stinger spent most of the month toodling around Southern California with no real chance to stretch its 365-horsepower legs. But this is what we ask of our long-term test cars; not every month is full of glorious road trips.
But that didn't stop us from picking up more key observations along the way. Cameron called Brent a liar (not really, but kind of), Carlos found a rare appreciation for a modern key, and Josh wonders why our Stinger doesn't ride a bit more like our BMW 540i.
Where Did We Drive It? We drove our 2017 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 some 1,306 miles in August, a figure that brings its odometer up to 19,091 miles overall. With just one month left of service, the Chevrolet ZR2 looks set to reach our typical 20,000-mile target in the allotted 12 months.
Those August miles were fairly evenly split between commuting, home-improvement store runs and a weekend camping trip to Sequoia National Park. August had it all, in other words: arterial city streets, urban freeways, interstates, winding mountain roads, traffic, wide-open spaces, grades and a smattering of altitude. And heat. August was sweltering around here.
by Mike Schmidt, Senior Manager, Vehicle Testing Operations
Where Did We Drive It? We purchased our 2019 Ram 1500 in July, so August marked our first full month with the truck. Dan Edmunds picked it up from Cowboy Dodge in Cheyenne, Wyoming, and drove it back to California. Once home, we unraveled the registration process of officially weighing and smog testing the Ram, then waiting in line at the DMV to pay state taxes. That was amazing. The stickers still had the new-registration smell when the truck joined a three-way comparison versus the Chevrolet Silverado and the Ford F-150.
Where Did We Drive It? We've had the 2018 BMW 540i xDrive in the Edmunds' long-term fleet for nearly a year. And while its time with us hasn't been completely issue-free, we breezed through August without any additional problems. There was even a nice little bump in our average fuel economy.
Last month, Road Test Engineer Calvin Kim made a 16-hour-plus round-trip drive from Los Angeles to Lake Tahoe and was surprised by the range capabilities of this 335-horsepower sport cruiser.
Where Did We Drive It? As Brent alluded to in July's update, our man Dan Edmunds drove our new long-term 2018 Volkswagen Atlas to Oregon at the end of July/beginning of August. In one week, Dan drove more than 2,000 miles, or roughly half of the Atlas' miles traveled up until that point. After his return, our team puttered around the Los Angeles area for the rest of the month. Overall, we added 1,683 miles to the odometer in August.
Where Did We Drive It? Our 2019 Infiniti QX50 finally stretched its legs in August, its first real month of service in the long-term fleet. We added the redesigned crossover in early July, putting on some break-in miles for much of the month. In late July and into August, a few members of the team drove it home and drove it around town, but it was editor Travis Langness who racked up the first batch of big miles with a 2,000-mile trip to Colorado.
Nissan's new variable compression four-cylinder engine found in the QX50 wasn't too impressive at Rocky Mountain altitude, nor were some of the QX's other comfort and safety features. Travis' initial impressions don't bode well for accruing road-trip mileage. On the other hand, some driver aids came in handy during our local driving and, common to Infinitis, the interior fit and finish punches above its weight.
Where Did We Drive It? The new JL model Wrangler benefits from many design and engineering updates intended to improve on-road comfort, which our drivers got to experience throughout August. Instead of exploring dirt roads or having adventures, our 2018 Jeep Wrangler spent the month on street duty commuting editors to and from the office, shuffling cargo to and fro, and otherwise doing its best impression of a crossover. Is it ideal for this role? Depends on whom you ask.
Where Did We Drive It? What kind of vehicle would you want to drive to your own wedding? Ferrari? Classic American iron? How about a 2018 Honda Odyssey?
Yep, Carlos Lago drove the van to his wedding last month in Santa Barbara. How's that for a vote of confidence? Calvin Kim also drove the Odyssey up to San Francisco. And later in the month, Mike Schmidt hauled his family of four to San Diego for a day trip. Heavy use in August gave our crew plenty of opportunities to opine about what they do and don't like about our new people mover.
by Josh Sadlier, Senior Manager of Content Strategy
Where Did We Drive It? The long-term 2018 Honda Accord got to stretch its legs this month thanks to Senior Consumer Advice Editor Ron Montoya, who logged a road trip to Palm Springs. Ron voices his displeasure with the Accord's throttle response in the comments below. And I'm right there with him, having registered similar complaints in both the Accord and our long-term Honda CR-V. Ron happens to prefer the CR-V's performance, while I favor the Accord's, but there's no question that Honda's zesty 1.5-liter turbocharged engine is dulled in both cars by the laggardly responses of the continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT).
At least the CVT automatic is good for fuel economy, right? More on that directly.
Where Did We Drive It? It was a low-key month for our 2018 Mazda CX-5. It spent most of its time with editor Brent Romans and was only driven about 890 miles. Brent was impressed by the CX-5's manual shift mode, climate control system, and blind-spot monitoring system indicators on the head-up display.
In late August, one of our commenters had posed the following questions: "Can you please tell us how the Soul Red Crystal Metallic paint is holding up? I hear horror stories of significant chipping, especially (but not limited to) the hood and the front bumper. I'd like another data point. And is acceleration really all that horrid?"
I did a brief walkaround and found no evidence of paint chipping. It seems to be holding up so far at just under 7,000 miles of driving. We'll keep an eye on it in the future.
As for the CX-5's performance, it definitely feels slow, but its acceleration time seems to be on par with the Toyota RAV4's, so it isn't that "horrid."