Sunday, April 1, 2018

2018 Audi Q7 Review

We think the Premium Plus is the one to get. This trim adds features like an upgraded sound system and blind-spot monitoring, but more importantly gives you access to more options. Buyers with heavy commutes will appreciate the Driver Assistance package and its suite of active driver aids. Those in extreme climates will want to consider the Cold or Warm Weather packages. Whatever your needs, the Q7 Premium Plus likely has a package to meet them. We like both engines, but keep in mind that the four-cylinder's advantage is a lower price tag more so than improved fuel economy.
The Audi Q7 is one of the top luxury crossovers in the midsize segment. It offers an appealing combo of performance, comfort, technology and value. Its well-built interior and advanced suite of semiautonomous driver-assistance features are also noteworthy.






The Q7 may be Audi's biggest SUV, but it's surprisingly nimble for its size, especially when equipped with the optional adaptive air suspension and four-wheel steering. Combine that with good visibility and willing engines and the Q7 is a pleasure to drive. And if you're not in the mood to drive, the Q7's optional driver aids will not only keep you in your lane, but they will also anticipate turns and adjust to local speed limits.
Beyond the impressive technology features, the Q7's interior is filled with high-quality materials and offers exceptional comfort. It's also extremely quiet and capable of smoothing out rough roads. The engines offer usable power and reasonable fuel economy thanks to this generation Q7's weight loss.
As much as we like the 2018 Audi Q7, its biggest weakness is cargo capacity. Both the Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class and Volvo XC90 boast more space, along with appealing interiors. Prospective buyers might also want to look at the sporty and well-rounded Acura MDX and BMW X5. There are a lot of strong entries in this segment, but the Q7 is one of the best, whether in base trim or fully loaded.

trim levels & features

The 2018 Audi Q7 is available in three trim levels. The entry-level Premium trim comes with enough features to satisfy many buyers but has only limited access to optional upgrades. From there, the Premium Plus trim adds a few extras, and it can be more thoroughly upgraded and customized. Finally, the range-topping Prestige trim bundles quite a few features and has access to some exclusive options.
Two engines are available for the Q7. The base engine is a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder that produces 252 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. It's only available in the Premium or Premium Plus trim levels. The upgraded supercharged 3.0-liter six-cylinder produces 333 horsepower and 325 lb-ft, and is offered in all three trims. Both engines are paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission and standard all-wheel drive.
The Premium trim includes leather upholstery, heated eight-way power-adjustable front seats, three-zone climate control, keyless entry and start, and a panoramic sunroof. Standard technology features include a rearview camera, 7-inch color driver information display in the gauge cluster, and Audi's MMI user interface with a 7-inch central display, Bluetooth connectivity, two USB ports and a 10-speaker sound system.
Some active safety features are also included on the Premium trim. Audi Pre-Sense Basic with Pedestrian Detection, which takes steps to mitigate injury and damage in a collision, is standard. You also get front and rear parking sensors and a rearview camera along with a power-folding third-row bench, split-folding second row, auto-dimming rearview mirror, power rear liftgate, HomeLink garage door opener, heated power-folding side mirrors, and LED running lights and taillights.
Only two major packages are available for the Premium trim. The Cold Weather package adds heated rear seats and a heated steering wheel. The MMI Navigation Plus package adds navigation that allows you to search for locations with Google Voice Search, smartphone integration, and a handful of other connected features.
Moving up to the Premium Plus trim adds the MMI Navigation Plus package, along with an upgraded Bose sound system, an electric tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, blind-spot monitoring with Pre Sense Rear, auto-dimming exterior mirrors and interior LED accent lights.
The Premium Plus trim also has access to quite a few optional packages. The Driver Assistance package adds the entire menu of electronic driver aids, and the Vision package adds Audi's Virtual Cockpit, a 360-degree exterior camera and LED headlights. There's also the Warm Weather package, which adds four-zone climate control, seat ventilation and rear sunshade. The Ventilation package, meanwhile, adds seat ventilation and sunshades.
The range-topping Prestige trim includes the Vision package and Warm Weather package, and also adds larger 20-inch wheels, a head-up display, and power-closing doors. Only the Prestige can be equipped with the Adaptive Chassis package, which adds four-wheel steering and an adaptive air suspension. There's also a night-vision system available along with a premium Bang & Olufsen sound system.
Notable stand-alone options that can be added to all trims include a trailering package and rear side-impact airbags.

trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our Full Test of the 2017 Audi Q7 Prestige (supercharged 3.0L V6 | 8-speed automatic | AWD).


Friday, February 2, 2018

2018 Audi A4 Review, Specs, Price

The midrange A4 Premium Plus trim builds on the already generous features list of the base Premium model, and its price is still pretty reasonable. This is the A4 version we'd want. You can get the Premium Plus with Audi's all-digital gauge cluster display in the Tech package and a Sport package with sportier suspension settings and front seats with larger bolsters. You might as well get all-wheel drive because it enhances the car's performance and gives you added traction in bad weather.
The 2018 Audi A4 delivers just about everything we expect from a small luxury sedan. There's quick acceleration, a comfortable ride, and the latest connectivity and navigation technologies. But the fact that it does it without overwhelming you makes it, at least for the time being, the car to get in the segment.
The A4 is a joy to drive, whether you're slicing your way through mountain switchbacks or just tackling your daily commute. On the inside, Audi's understated yet attractive interior design makes operating all of the many high-tech features easy, thanks to the intuitive MMI infotainment system and smartly placed physical buttons for more common functions. To top it off, the A4 also provides plenty of space and comfort for front and rear passengers, accommodating even taller adults in back.
Trust us, you'll want this car on your short list.
Notably, we picked the 2018 Audi A4 as one of Edmunds' Best AWD Sedans for this year.

trim levels & features

The 2017 Audi A4 is a small luxury sedan available in three main trim levels: PremiumPremium Plus and Prestige. A more fuel-efficient A4 Ultra subtrim is also available in conjunction with the Premium and Premium Plus trims. Under the hood is a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine (252 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque). The A4 Ultra's engine is less powerful (190 hp and 236 lb-ft of torque) but gets better fuel economy.
Front-wheel drive is standard, with all-wheel drive (called Quattro in Audi lingo) optional. A seven-speed, dual-clutch automatic transmission comes with all A4s. A six-speed manual transmission is also available but only on all-wheel-drive A4s. The Ultra is offered only with front-wheel drive. Unless you really want maximum fuel economy, we'd suggest sticking with the regular A4 engine instead of the Ultra. You'll feel the power difference.
Standard feature highlights for the A4 Premium include 17-inch wheels, automatic xenon headlights, a forward collision mitigation system, adjustable drive settings (Audi's Drive Select), a sunroof, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, leather upholstery, heated power front seats, tri-zone climate control and folding rear seatbacks. Standard technology features include a rearview camera, Audi's MMI infotainment system with a 7-inch central display, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration, and a 10-speaker audio system with two USB ports.
The optional Convenience package adds auto-dimming and power-folding side mirrors, keyless ignition and entry, driver-seat memory settings and satellite radio.
Our favorite is the next step up, the Premium Plus. You get the Convenience package features as standard, along with 18-inch wheels, LED headlights, sporty (S line) exterior styling flourishes, front and rear parking sensors, and a 19-speaker Bang & Olufsen surround-sound audio system. Audi's blind-spot and rear-facing crash mitigation system, Side Assist and Pre Sense Rear, is also standard.
The main option for the Premium Plus is the Navigation and Telematics package. This gets you with Audi Connect online services (includes a 4G LTE connection and Wi-Fi), a digital instrument cluster (Virtual Cockpit) and an upgraded version of MMI with an enhanced 8.3-inch display, navigation, voice controls and fingertip-scrawl recognition.
Finally, there's the top-of-the-line A4 Prestige. It comes with all of the above as standard plus a head-up display, additional interior ambient lighting, a top-down parking camera system, lane departure warning and intervention, and upgraded interior trim.
Notable options packages include the Sport, Sport Plus, Cold Weather and Warm Weather packages.

trim tested

Each vehicle typically comes in multiple versions that are fundamentally similar. The ratings in this review are based on our Full Test of the 2017 Audi A4 2.0T Prestige Quattro Sedan (turbo 2.0L inline-4 | 7-speed dual-clutch automatic | AWD).
NOTE: Since this test was conducted, the current A4 has received only minor feature revisions. Our findings remain applicable to this year's model.


Monday, September 11, 2017

2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overview

A new Trailhawk model features all of the off-road-ready hardware in Jeep’s arsenal, plus a unique interior and trademark red tow hooks. Meanwhile, the top-of-the-line Summit model gets a more upscale interior and more standard equipment. The SRT gets its own unique front fascia and a “Laguna leather” interior package, while all other models except the Summit get the front-end treatment from 2016’s 75th Anniversary Edition. All Grand Cherokees now have a backup camera and rear parking sensors as standard.

Vehicle Summary

The five-passenger Grand Cherokee sits at the top of Jeep’s lineup as its largest, most expensive, and—in certain trim levels—most luxurious SUV.

Overview

The Grand Cherokee was an instant hit when it was introduced for the 1993 model year, and subsequent versions—there have been four major revisions in total—always seemed to strike just the right note with buyers. To this day, the Grand Cherokee rides high on the Jeep brand cachet that it helped to create. With five models on offer for 2017—Laredo, Limited, Overland, Summit, SRT, and the new-for-2017 Trailhawk—the Grand Cherokee seems to be willing to play any role it is offered: Sensible all-weather family wagon, luxo-yacht, bare-knuckle street racer, or hard-core off-roader.

The Grand Cherokee offers four engines, all tied to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Chrysler’s 295-hp, 260-lb-ft 3.6-liter “Pentastar” V-6 is standard in all models save for the SRT, and in all but the entry-level Laredo it can be replaced by either a 360-hp, 390-lb-ft 5.7-liter V-8 or a 240-hp, 420-lb-ft 3.0-liter turbodiesel V-6. EPA fuel economy estimates with the gas V-6 are 19/26 mpg city/highway with rear-wheel drive and 18/25 mpg with four-wheel drive; the V-8 drops that to 14/22 mpg with 4WD (RWD numbers were not announced at time of writing), while the diesel increases those numbers to 22/30 mpg with RWD and 21/28 mpg with AWD. The SRT does its own thing with a 6.4-liter V-8 that produces 475 hp and 470 lb-ft, comes exclusively with four-wheel drive, and is EPA rated at 13/19 mpg.

Safety

The Jeep Grand Cherokee gets a perfect five-star rating from NHTSA when equipped with four-wheel drive, but rear-drive models get only four stars. Front and side crash ratings are five stars for both, but the RWD version gets three stars for rollover versus the 4WD’s four. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety hasn’t tested a 2017 Grand Cherokee, but gave the 2016 model its best rating (“Good”) for all tests except its difficult new small-overlap crash test, in which the Grand Cherokee was rated “Marginal”—that’s only one step up from the bottom. Available active safety features include forward collision warning and mitigation with automatic braking, adaptive cruise control, and lane-departure and blind-spot warning systems.

What We Think

The fact that we put a Grand Cherokee up against a Mercedes-Benz ML, a Porsche Cayenne, and a Volkswagen Touareg should give you some idea of the regard we have for Jeep’s flagship SUV. Granted, having a diesel engine was the price of entry to this comparison, but the Grand Cherokee fit nicely into this company. We loved the upscale interior and the intuitive interface, and we were impressed, though not surprised, by its off-road ability. (This was before we had a chance to try the new-for-2017 Trailhawk model, which has even more ground clearance courtesy of a specially developed version of Jeep’s Quadra-Lift air suspension.) At the end of the day, the scores told the story: The Jeep Grand Cherokee won the comparison. “Capability, character, class, and content,” we said. “The hallmarks of a winner.”

The SRT stands outside the rest of the Grand Cherokee family; its idea of “off pavement” is a race track. We put one through its paces on the Circuit of the Americas, and found that Jeep had done a great job tuning this two-and-a-half-ton behemoth to a most un-SUV-like environment. “Its all-wheel-drive system and electronic rear differential put all 465 lb-ft of torque to the ground better than any other SRT vehicle save the Viper,” our tester noted. “Just feed in the gas and it digs at both ends.”

Cool Fact

The original Grand Cherokee program was started when Jeep was still owned by American Motors.

Key Competitors:

Ford Explorer
Toyota 4Runner
Land Rover LR4
Volkswagen Touareg

sources : motortrend

Sunday, September 10, 2017

2017 BMW X1 Prices, Reviews and Pictures

This BMW X1 is the second generation of the company’s smallest crossover. There’s been a major change this time around. It’s based not on a natively rear-drive platform, but on BMW’s new front-drive/4WD components (the same setup is already used in the 2 Series Active Tourer MPV). This means a transverse engine, freeing up extra cabin space.

In size and space, this brings it into line with the meat of the big-selling family crossover market, such as the Ford Kuga. But of course it’s more expensive than the Ford and can be had with more sophisticated equipment. Not that you’ll be considering the Ford: this is all about BMW X1 vs Audi Q3. Most versions are 4WD except the base 18d diesel. All engines, petrol or diesel, are 2.0-litre jobs from BMWs new powertrain family.

Driving


So far we’ve driven only the X1 25d xDrive. This has a twin-turbo engine (one for low revs and one for high), and four-wheel-drive. Its 231bhp can shift the 1575kg with useful urgency through the smooth eight-speed auto box. And it’s much quieter than the last-gen BMW diesels. Handling is pretty tidy, too, with precise steering. Only if you hurl it at a sharp bend does the chassis go soggy. Mostly it all feels progressive and nicely balanced. It’s not a dedicated off-roader but with all-season tyres ought to be good for a ski trip.

What’s really improved since the last BMW X1 is the ride. It’s supple enough to be comfy, but well-damped enough not to induce sickness in a family vehicle. It’s a nice balance, which is something you couldn’t have said before.

On the inside


It’s roomy, nicely made and decently equipped. The switch to a transverse engine means lots of extra rear legroom, enough for full-size adults. The boot is big too and has a useful double floor, and being a crossover means its usefully highso you don’t have to bend down double to get things in and out. The separate sides of the rear seat optionally slide independently, so you shouldn’t want for versatility.

BMW’s latest-gen electronics mean several standard safety items, including forward collision warning and autonomous city braking. Many more come optionally at not-too-indigestible prices. For example, the optional head-up display is a compact hinged item, but plenty good enough. Satnav is standard, a basic but highly useable system. Pay more and you get a bigger screen, and internet connection with superb traffic info.

Owning


Even the top 25d is fuel-efficient for a crossover, thanks to new-gen powertrains, clever aero features and comparatively light weight. Or you can step down to a lower-power version and get competitive performance against rivals. Residual values look strong, buoyed by the car’s improved appeal. Insurance will be helped by the electronic safety features.

sources : topgear