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Change! Unlike last year, in which Car and Driver's 10Best list was populated with almost exactly the same vehicles as the year before - the only change between 2012 and 2013 was that the Scion FR-S/Subaru BRZ twins took the position previously occupied by the Cadillac CTS-V. By contrast, 2014 brings with it several notable additions and subtractions. But first, let's look at what carries over from 2013 to '14: the Audi A6/A7/S6/S7 family, the BMW 3 Series/4 Series family, the Honda Accord, Porsche Boxster/Cayman and Volkswagen Golf/GTI.
That's a mighty fine list of machinery there, to be sure. But you may notice a few glaring omissions, most notably, in our eyes at least, the Mazda MX-5 Miata. For those keeping track, the little Japanese sports car had been on the list for eight consecutive years, ending in 2013, for a total of 14 appearances since hitting the market in 1989. Given the model's age and the rest of this new 10 Best list, we don't think Mazda will be too disappointed, however. Also missing is the Ford Focus/Focus ST and Mustang, which made it in 2013 in GT and Boss 302 guises. Finally, the Honda Fit falls off, along with the aforementioned FR-S and BRZ coupes.
So, fully half of last year's 10Best cars were removed for 2014. Here are the new faces: Head on over to Car and Driver for the complete rundown, scroll down below for a video, and feel free to let us know what you think of the magazine's 10Best Cars for 2014 in the Comments.Permalink | Email this | Comments
Filed under: Etc.
Oktoberfest, the annual festival held every autumn in Germany, is a mecca of beer, food, beer, German culture, beer, music, rides and more beer. Considering all the stuff (beer) at the 16-day festival, it shouldn't be a shock that people routinely misplace things, whether they be wallets, cell phones or some other item. We wonder if this is the first time anyone has ever misplaced a car, though.
Yes, an Italian man lost his Volkswagen Golf "somewhere in east Munich," over the course of his time at the Theresienwiese (Oktoberfest grounds). What makes the story more shocking, though, is that the 40-year-old claims his misplaced VW wasn't due to any overindulgences. "I didn't come to drink. I came for the rides," the man, who was only known as Andreas, told The Local, an English-language German news site. He simply couldn't remember where he parked the car.
According to The Local, there are eight different entrances to the Theresienwiese, in addition to a number of train stations. "I rode all the way along [the number 16 and 17] lines looking down every side street and found nothing," the man said. Rather than give up, he spent the next five weeks traveling back and forth between Munich and his South Tyrol home, looking for the car. Eventually, after the Abendzeitung newspaper ran a story on his plight, a tip came in leading him to his long-lost Golf. "I was absolutely thrilled," said Andreas.
As for the question we posed at the start of this story about people losing cars, according to local police, this sort of stuff is hardly uncommon during Oktoberfest. "We get this sort of thing all the time," said Munich police spokesperson Christoph Reichenbach.Permalink | Email this | Comments
The Volkswagen Golf Plus has been offered since the Mark V in 2005 or so, but Americans have never had to consider it and wonder why anyone would need a taller, longer Golf hatchback instead of a wagon or a Tiguan. VW thinks it's a pretty big hit in other countries, though, so they've launched the Golf Sportsvan concept for the Frankfurt Motor Show. The successor to the Golf Plus will apparently look a lot like this.
Just ahead of this week's Frankfurt Motor Show, Volkswagen has announced the world premiere of its Golf Sportsvan, a near-production concept that succeeds its Golf Plus. VW describes this compact family car as "one of the most versatile vehicles of the compact class," noting that it offers a mix of hatchback and minivan features in a sporty package.
That sportiness comes from the Sportsvan's styling (perhaps more sleek wagon than minivan) and performance features it shares with the Golf GTI - including the XDS+ electronic differential lock, which is integrated into the Electronic Stability Control system to improve agility. At the same time, the Sportsvan's six engine options, which include a turbodiesel, are up to 19-percent more fuel-efficient than their predecessors.
On the inside, VW touts this multi-purpose vehicle's additional cargo space and more spacious rear seating as improvements over the model it replaces. The multifunctional rear bench seat splits 60/40 and features individual adjustment of each section. Additional highlights include the option for advanced assistance systems such as the Blind Spot Monitor and premium comforts such as steering wheel heating.
According to VW, the Sportsvan will see production as soon as mid-2014. However, don't expect this model to make its way to US shores. For more details, take a look at the photo gallery above and read VW's press release below.
The power of ions has overcome two models in the Volkswagen range, the resulting e-Golf and e-Up slated for world premieres at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The e-Up uses a 60-kW motor producing 155 pound-feet of torque, gets from 0-to-62 miles per hour in 12.4 seconds an on to a top speed of 81 mph. It's 18.7 kWh battery will get it a range of 100 miles, and VW figures that its ability to go 100 kilometers with 11.7 kWh of electricity will cost just three euros and two cents at current rates.
The larger e-Golf gets more powerful internals, a 24.2-kWh battery powering an 85-kW motor producing 199 lb-ft of torque, getting it from standstill to 62 mph in 10.4 seconds and on to an electronically-limited of 87 mph. It has a range of 118 miles, its cost to do 100 km only slightly higher than the e-Up at three euros and 30 cents, or 12.7 kWh.
Driving dynamics can be controlled through two driving modes and four regenerative brake modes. Each car also shares standard features like climate control and navigation, and both can be charged to about 80 percent of battery capacity in thirty minutes using the powerful CCS chargers in Germany. The e-Golf goes further, getting LED headlights as standard - the first VW to get the high-tech eyes.
There's a press release below with more information, and we'll see them live at Frankfurt in a couple of weeks.Permalink | Email this | Comments