Auto Reviews


FROM 2002 TO M235i
BMW’s new 2-series muscle

AUTO REVIEW— Those who follow BMW know a simple yet efficient designation of the product lines sold in the USA. The sedans are odd numbered, 3, 5, and 7. The second set of numbers denote the engine capacity in liters. Coupes bear even numbers. And for those willing to tear down the roads, there is an M – a sport and track oriented dominator. And then things went haywire. There is now the new BMW M235i, which is a successor to last year’s 1 Series coupe (shouldn’t 1 be a sedan?), which harkens back to the celebrated 2002. Harvey Schwartz reports.

THE SHINING
Infiniti’s balancing act with the Q70s 5.6

AUTO REVIEW—Ah , the contradictions of luxury car status symbols. You want to shine, but not like you’re trying too hard. Justin Bieber may be able to get away with a car finished in chrome, but that’s not the kind of shine most people seek in a luxury sedan. Infiniti thinks it strikes the right balance with its 2014 Q70S. Mark Dorman finds out if the car can walk the walk as well as talk the talk.

CADDY SHOCK
2014 Cadillac ELR

AUTO REVIEW—No, we’re not talking about a sequel to Harold Ramis’ cult-classic “Caddyshack”. This is Caddy Shock, as in Cadillac’s first foray into extended range electric cars. While some may be shocked that it’s more than twice the price of GM’s other extended range electric car (the Volt), this one is a visual stunner—almost identical to the Cadillac Converj concept. It’s called the Cadillac ELR, and it’s a shoe-in for future classic car status. John Grafman reports.

WORLD CUP OF CROSSOVERS?
2014 Infiniti QX60

AUTO REVIEW—The recently concluded World Cup Soccer Tournament in Brazil brings to mind upscale soccer moms who can use the three rows of seats in the 2014 Infiniti QX60 to transport their players in luxury. Front seat headrests have built in TV screens. Future champions have their own climate control. Therein may lie the reason why the U.S. team never advanced beyond the first round. Here, our kids are coddled in transportation like this. Over there, some kids have no running water. But their motivation to turn into the next Lionel Messi is very, very high.

ELECTRIC HOT ROD FROM HELL
The Chevrolet Spark EV

AUTO REVIEW—Let’s cut to the chase: The 2014 Chevrolet Spark EV cranks out 400 pound-feet of torque. That’s more than the Porsche 911 Carrera S, more than the 5.0 V8 Mustang GT and more than the Ferrari 458 Italia. But whereas the Ferrari’s maximum torque occurs at 6,000 rpm, the Spark EV delivers all 400 big ones at zero rpm. Meet the $18,000* electric hot rod from hell.

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