[cc] 2010 Mazda 3i × 2010 Kia Forte SX Review - Lake Houston, United States
Adam Barrera at highmileage.org evaluates the Mazda 3i and Kia Forte SX compact sedans, pits them head-to-head, and places them in the context of their competition. Let me know what you think -- start a conversation with me on Twitter. http://twitter.com/highmileage
The first Mazda3 was a Great Little Car! It would've been the best among its peers...
if it hadn't trailed the Ford Focus by 8 miles per gallon.
Time has passed, and the 3 has evolved... but it faces new competition.
The Kia Forte is the first Korean compact car engineered to be at the top of shoppers' lists...
instead of a second-tier alternative.
Tedious automotive clichés mean that some compact car buyers will bypass
these cars altogether on their way to Honda and Toyota showrooms.
What a bummer.
The Forte feels as solidly built as any Civic or Corolla,
and it's backed by a longer warranty.
Inside the Forte, there are no positive or negative surprises
just a well-crafted and inoffensively designed interior
with slightly more passenger room and cargo volume than its main competition.
The new Mazda3's interior lies on the same plane.
The last-generation 3's deep, dramatic gauge lighting is gone.
Also gone is the eye-catching contrast-check upholstery that used to set this car apart in the segment.
In the New 3, drivers sit in a vast expanse of unaccented cloth.
Thankfully, the head unit's reactive LEDs have been retained.
They're the only design element that saves the 3's interior from monotony.
On the road, both vehicles bring memories of a better time
when '90s compacts were light and fun to toss.
Kia has never built a vehicle as dialed in as the Forte.
Its above-average reflexes seem held back only by its tires.
But where the Kia surprises, the Mazda thrills.
At Mazda, Zoom-Zoom isn't a marketing slogan
it's an engineering guideline.
Not a single bushing drowns out the base 3's connection to the road.
The 3 is still *so* fun to drive,
but its interior has become marginalized and severe.
Without an interior edge, the only parameter that makes the Mazda3
more desirable than the Kia Forte is the way that it drives.
If Kia sharpened the Forte's steering and suspension, Mazda could have a problem.
But for now, the Mazda delivers a complete package:
competitive fuel economy, declarative sheetmetal, and soulful road feel.
Both cars are more engaging than the Toyota Corolla
and more rationally priced than the Honda Civic.
Drive - Kia Forte EX
Award winning automotive journalist Tom Voelk tests the Kia Forte EX. The review also includes foot space for his size 11s, bluetooth connectivity (if the car has it), and the ever popular Toliet Paper (TP) test.
2010 KIA Forte SX review
( http://www.TFLcar.com ) Give us 3-minutes and we'll give you the scoop, In the past some Korean car manufactures have blatantly copied much more expensive competitors like the Mercedes Benz or Jaguar, but the Forte only takes the better design cues from the Civic and builds on them with a unique, original, and dare I say a sexy spin on the standard Civic.
2010 Kia Forte Review by Drivin' Ivan Katz
The 2010 Kiar Forte SX Tested and Reviewed by Drivin' Ivan Katz.
Read Ivan's Articles Here:
Read Ivan's Kia Forte Review Here:
[cc] 2011 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid Road Test Review - First Drive
Adam Barrera at highmileage.org evaluates the 2011 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid sedan and places it in the context of its competition. Let me know what you think -- start a conversation with me on Twitter. http://twitter.com/highmileage
In a market saturated with low-denominator midsize sedans that try
just hard enough to earn buyers' attention, Hyundai has taken a
radical tack with the wildly styled Sonata Hybrid.
Manufacturers obsessed with selling vehicles in bulk tend toward
conservative exterior designs.
Hyundai, on the other hand, has retained bravery.
Even the base Sonata wears daring sheetmetal strakes and a swooping
The Hybrid's unique front air dam allows for an aerodynamically tight
grille-less hood design.
Blue logos and clear taillamps seem to be staples of hybrid differentiation.
It also seems as if every hybrid must have a gimmicky display to
reassure owners that they are,
indeed, helping the planet.
Four different screens in the navitainment system can be used to
monitor the driver's behavior, the flow of energy to and from the
wheels, and fuel economy statistics.
Only the last two screens provide useful information at a glance.
An Eco Guide needle swings to indicate live fuel consumption.
A traditional tachometer would be more useful, but, unfortunately,
there's not even an option to monitor engine speed through the driver
This Blue Drive button on the steering wheel seems to have no effect
other than turning the driver information center blue.
One screen 'grades' drivers' habits via an Eco Score,
which never exceeded nine during this test.
No matter. In heavy Chicago traffic, the Sonata returned an average of
40 miles per gallon
by aggressively cutting fuel during deceleration
and staying in EV mode until the battery pack reached less than half-capacity.
At freeway speeds, the Sonata often cycles into pure EV mode.
Hyundai says their hybrid will enter EV mode at speeds of up to 62
miles per hour,
but this pre-production car entered EV mode when coasting down from
speeds of over 70 mph.
On the road, powertrain transitions are seamless.
At parking lot speeds and at idle, however, the Sonata whirs, pops and
buzzes in a cacophony that, again, probably serves to remind its
drivers that they are indeed inside a hybrid. Imperceptibility was
once the goal of any hybrid vehicle.
Now that driving a hybrid is a social statement,
certain types of aural feedback may possess an important sort of novelty.
Otherwise, the hybrid shares the base Sonata's quirks and assets.
The steering wheel is admirably designed with a sense of motion,
but curiously, the leather wrap doesn't cover the touch points at 9 and 3.
The same dynamism is captured in the design of the center stack,
but the navitainment system cannot split radio and map data.
Hyundai's famous premium leather grain is perforated to stay
comfortable during long roadtrips.
The battery pack does annex some trunk space,
which leaves a very narrow pass-through slot to accommodate long cargo.
However, passenger volume remains unchanged from the standard model.
The Hyundai Sonata Hybrid makes sense for midsize sedan buyers
who spend lots of time in bumper-to-bumper city traffic.
However, like most other hybrids, high-speed commuters may find that the
conventional non-hybrid Sonata delivers similar highway fuel
efficiency -- at less cost.
2010 Kia Forte Koup SX In Depth Review, Start Up, and Engine Details
In this video I give a full in depth tour of the 2010 Kia Forte Koup SX. I take viewers on a close look through the interior and exterior of this car while showing details, over viewing of features, and noting unique styling cues to the vehicle itself. I also show the engine and the details of it, start it up and see how it sounds under acceleration. A thorough tour/review of this car designed to give others a greater overall appreciation of the vehicle.
Review of the ALL NEW 2010 Kia Forte
This is a review of the all new 2010 Kia Forte, which replaces the Kia Spectra. This car truly makes Kia a major player in the segment. Check it out!
[cc] 2009 Dodge Journey SXT Video Review
Proudly Closed Captioned. Adam Barrera at highmileage.org reviews the 2009 Dodge Journey crossover and places it in the context of its competition. 24x7: http://twitter.com/highmileage
Chrysler -- is in trouble. No analyst knows this icon's ultimate fate.
The best gauge of Chrysler's future viability is the promise of its most recent products.
I'm Adam at highmileage.org. I have good news:
this Dodge Journey isn't perfect, but it demonstrates a solid foundation to build on.
The Journey's excellence isn't in execution --
which is frankly unrefined and at times not fully thought out.
The Journey excels in its *ethic.*
This crossover somehow seems lighter than its competition.
Clever packaging solutions prove the Journey is built by people who really live in their cars.
Though this crossover form factor is creative, and DNA from the Dodge Caravan is evident,
the Journey is most comfortable when used as a five-seater.
An available third-row bench increases seating to seven,
but the rearmost bench is tight for bigger occupants -- that makes it: a 'sometimes seat'.
Behind the second row, the Journey offers 7 cubic feet more cargo space than the competing Toyota Venza.
But the Journey's storage story hardly ends in the hatch.
A fold-flat front seat helps the Journey handle long loads,
and a 'chill box' can cool down two twelve-ounce cans.
Your kids will figure out how to fill the rear in-floor storage space.
Clever seating systems and storage modules position Chrysler as a multi-purpose vehicle innovator --
IF that talent is nurtured and engineers' brave ideas are respected.
A mostly pedestrian interior design ethos is executed using average materials --
and exhibits none of the shockingly careless panel gap found inside the Toyota Venza.
But at night, a comprehensive LED lighting pack floods the cabin with crisp light on approach.
Ambient lighting in the front footwells is tasteful, but doesn't extend to the rear.
That's too bad -- kids are more appreciative of lighting that chases backseat boogiemen away.
Center stack ergonomics -- deserve revision.
Climate controls are simple to remember and usually don't require a driver's eyesight.
The stereo head unit, on the other hand, sometimes requires a driver's eye to operate.
As a general rule, displays should be close to the driver's line of sight to reduce distraction.
Inexplicably, the Journey's climate controls are stacked atop the stereo.
It's amazing that, after decades, the gunsight grille hasn't grown stale.
As new materials and aero techniques emerge, the crosshairs can evolve and take new forms.
Tight panel gaps and squinting headlamps lend a sense of precision to the front quarter.
Rear styling is contemporary, if not tall and narrow.
The Journey loses exterior design points for being available in five shades of greige,
but gains them back for offering two bright blues, a declarative red, and a fresh sage hue.
The optional performance package combines sportier suspension and steering feel
with 19-inch alloys that nicely fill the wheel wells.
This front-wheel-drive model's pavement tackle couldn't accurately be called 'performance',
but the Journey is light on its feet at speed and proves easy to manoeuver in sedate situations.
The 3.5-liter V6 is noticeably underpowered, especially in comparison to the Ford Edge and Toyota Venza.
Both competitors have around 30 more horsepower, more useful torque, and deliver more MPG.
At 232 horsepower and 235 pound-feet of torque, I feel that a turbocharged four-cylinder could do a better job.
More aggressive downshift mapping would help the six-speed automatic cope with freeway passing, too.
The best family haulers can handle people without asterisks.
With slight interior and powertrain tweaks, the Dodge Journey could lead in its class.
Until then, the Journey is a reminder -- that Chrysler might not be down for the count after all.
[cc] 2010 Kia Soul Exclaim × 2010 Nissan Cube Krom Review - Lake Houston, United States
Adam Barrera at highmileage.org evaluates the Kia Soul Exclaim and Nissan Cube Krom subcompact cars, pits them head-to-head, and places them in the context of their competition. Let me know what you think -- start a conversation with me on Twitter. http://twitter.com/highmileage
If you've attended a recent auto show, you may have noticed a billboard at the Scion stand.
The Scion xB is "Not the Copy", it says.
It's tough to trace the origin of the box-shaped subcompact.
One fact is proven: the Nissan Cube is no copy.
It debuted in Japan two years before the Scion xB.
And though the xB's lines have softened, the Cube continues to live up to its name.
But not without -- strong competition.
The Kia Soul may have borrowed its form factor, but finally delivers what its peers have yet to provide.
Cubic cars may have radical sheetmetal, but their interiors remain mostly pedestrian.
Except -- for the Kia Soul.
Soul shoppers can choose from four premium interior fabrics that vary with the vehicle's trim level.
Each themed interior -- dares to stand out.
This Soul Exclaim wears high-contrast houndstooth
wrapped around exceptionally supportive seatbacks and bolsters.
Though most interior elements are borrowed from Kia's compact car parts bin,
novel touches like a contrasting steering wheel hub
and bass-reactive LEDs in the speakers lend the Soul a measure of autonomy.
The Cube Krom's seats wear a more subtle technical material,
but super-soft bolsters underneath induce backaches on even short roadtrips.
Nissan's "Jacuzzi Curve" styling theme is unique to the Cube.
Echoes in the speaker grilles and headliner show close attention to detail,
but the novelty of a shag-carpet dash mat is eclipsed by a label
that warns against placing items on the mat while driving.
These cars' road manners match their interior ethic.
The Nissan Cube has ample power to crest hills and merge on the freeway,
and darts through subdivisions or parking lots with ease.
But the /Kia's/ wider stance and thicker tires
gift it an athleticism previously unseen among cube cars.
The Soul stays planted at cornering speeds where the cubic competition can't keep up.
Carefully tuned damping rates micro-manage ride quality at normal speeds,
but drivers aren't totally sheltered from road feel.
That's the key to the Kia Soul's conscience:
as small cars grow in popularity and plushness,
it's easy to abandon driver engagement in favor of numbness.
The Cube was obviously built to be a metropolitan city-runner.
The Soul, on the other hand, is cosmopolitan and well-rounded.
2010 Kia Forte Koup Review
Adam Macklin from Kia of Newmarket gives you an in depth walk-around of the hottest new car on the market... the 2010 Kia Forte Koup. Honda Civic owners bring in your keys and ownership, you're going to want to trade up! For more information and to book a test drive visit http://www.kiaofnewmarket.com or direct at 17415 Yonge St., Newmarket, Ontario
Visit us online at http://www.kiaofnewmarket.com
Follow us on Twitter @kianewmarket
2010 Kia Forte - Road Test
The quality product coming out of Hyundai and Kia these days is starting to get really good. With Kia's the latest offering, the Forte, the Korean company takes dead aim at the Honda Civic. So, how does it do? Will your next compact be a Kia? Watch and find out.
2010 Kia Forte Koup SX Start Up, Engine, and In Depth Tour/Review
In this video I give a full in depth tour of the all new 2010 Kia Forte Koup SX. I take viewers on a close look through the interior and exterior of this car while showing details, over viewing of features, and noting unique styling cues to the vehicle itself. I also show the engine and the details of it, start it up and see how it sounds under acceleration. A thorough tour/review of this car designed to give others a greater overall appreciation of the vehicle.