Monthly Archives: March 2011

2011 Toyota Venza AWD

This gallery contains 7 photos.

I’ve been thinking for a while now about what might replace our 2004 Mazda6 Wagon in the next year or two. With our kids being six and nine years of age, we still need cargo-carrying capacity. We have found that our Mazda’s seating for five and nearly 1,000 litres of cargo volume behind the seats meets our needs nicely, so we’re not interested in a van. And in the interest of car-like handling, we’re trying to steer clear of most crossovers; but that’s getting increasingly difficult as the traditional affordable wagon has all but disappeared from the market.
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2011 Volkswagen Golf Wagon TDI

This gallery contains 15 photos.

As the only diesel-powered compact wagon available in Canada, the VW Golf wagon TDI offers a rare combination of outstanding fuel economy, generous cargo capacity, and everyday driveability at a price starting under $30,000. The fact that this alternative fuel wagon was voted Best New Family Car in the 2010 AJAC Canadian Car of the Year Awards, and the VW Jetta TDI sedan was voted Best New Family Car in 2011, says a lot about how good today’s diesel engine technology has become.
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2006 – 2011 Acura CSX

This gallery contains 4 photos.

The Honda Civic-based Acura CSX is the most recent of the brand’s entry-level offerings, following the 1997 1.6 EL and 2001 1.7 EL; previous to the EL, you can count the Integra, which was part of Acura’s original line-up in 1986, as one of the CSX’s ancestors, too.
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2011 Subaru Forester 2.5X Touring

This gallery contains 7 photos.

In the compact crossover set, the manual transmission plays hard to get. Many of the big names, like the CR-V, RAV4, Rogue and CX-7, come only with automatics. The ones that can be bought with a stick, such as the Tucson, Sportage and Ford Escape, force compromises on the buyers, such as limiting the availability of a manual transmission to models with front-wheel drive, in a class where many shoppers place a high priority on all-wheelers.
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2006.5 – 2010 Kia Magentis

This gallery contains 6 photos.

It’s a funny thing, this business of naming cars. There are many whose monikers are made-up words, and others whose names are creative variations on real ones. The Kia Magentis fell into the latter category, at least in Canada (and Australia, Europe and Brazil); cross the border into the United States, though, and you’ll find this same car, called the Optima. A far better name for a car, don’t you think? I do, and that’s why I’m glad Kia ditched the Magentis badge when the third generation (2011) version of this car was launched.
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2011 GMC Acadia Denali – Ottawa to the Chicago Auto Show

This gallery contains 10 photos.

Ottawa, Ontario – It was -25 degrees Celsius with a strong wind blowing in Chicago. A walk outside was short lived and I felt housebound at the hotel located in the River North district, a $10 cab ride from McCormick Place where the annual Chicago International Auto Show takes place.
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2011 Hyundai Elantra Limited

This gallery contains 9 photos.

With the exception of a few retro vehicles such as the Mini and Beetle, it isn’t often that a car becomes a runaway hit right out of the box. That said, that was precisely the case with the Hyundai Elantra, which is completely redesigned for 2011. In January, its first full month of sales and before the company even started aggressively advertising it, it became the best-selling car in Canada, ahead of the triumvirate of Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla and Mazda3 that usually jockeys for the top spot.
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