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Auto Word: 2016 Toyota Tacoma is all About Action and Agility

Automotive / Mark Maynard /

The best thing about the new Toyota Tacoma is its chassis. There is high-strength steel in the frame for rigidity and ultra-high-strength steel adds strength to the body shell. And those steely enhancements should prevent the doors from binding when crawling around off-road.

That's good because Toyota says its ninth-generation Tacoma is all ...Read more

Auto Word: Cadillac's CTS-V Supersedan is a Steely Performer

Automotive / Mark Maynard /

As soon as I squeezed on the trigger of the Caddy's 640-horsepower engine, the whine of the supercharger made my mouth water.

How tasty, I thought, as my eyes flicked to the center console in search of the modes control. Ah, yes, I punched the button to click through Snow, Touring and Sport to land on Track. With this type of weapons-grade ...Read more

Auto Word: Classy and Sophisticated Infiniti QX50 Crossover Thinks It Is a Sport Sedan

Automotive / Mark Maynard /

I always liked the classy sophistication of Infiniti's EX crossover, which was more of a glorified wagon. It was a little small in the back-seat area for mainstream acceptance, but there was nothing wrong with how it delivered personal luxury.

Infiniti relaunched the EX for 2016, renaming it the QX50, and made it larger with a V-6 heart of gold...Read more

Auto Word: Chevy Fires Up Its Subcompact Hatch

Automotive / Mark Maynard /

Chevrolet lit a fire under its 2016 Spark and made it a pretty cool little car.

While it is an economy car, it is not a penalty box. With access to techy extras it will be appealing to young drivers, and with its decent cargo space it is a good all-around grocery getter. But even with a possible 41 mpg on the highway, I wouldn't use it as a ...Read more

Auto Word: Bigger XC90 the New Savior and Face of Volvo

Automotive / Mark Maynard /

There is a lot riding on the redesigned 2016 Volvo XC90. It's not just a completely redone SUV; it represents everything new about this Swedish carmaker that is reestablishing itself as a luxury brand that is now owned by a Chinese company.

It would seem to be a good pairing of car companies, and one that allows Volvo to keep its accent while ...Read more

Auto Word: Mercedes' New Midsize Van Redefines Work

Automotive / Mark Maynard /

I have never driven a more refined, commercial-grade passenger van than the 2016 Mercedes-Benz Metris.

Usually these commercial vans are coarse but effective at workhorse business chores, but the superior engineering for the Metris puts it in its own class, and likely with a higher asking price.

At almost 17 feet long, almost 6 1/2 feet tall ...Read more

Auto Word: Coffee-Table Books That Won't Be Re-Gifted

Automotive / Mark Maynard /

I didn't think there was a scrap of unreported information remaining on ANY Porsche, yet "My Porsche Book: The Iconic 356s" is a new and weighty hardback that focuses solely on the first-generation 356 model.

Author and photographer Rene Staud, 63, has connections that have put him in the right place at the right time to get access to some of ...Read more

Auto Word: Chevy's Durable Compact Equinox Has Can-Do Attitude

Automotive / Mark Maynard /

The Chevrolet Equinox is a friendly workhorse of a family car that won't be outgrown in a couple of seasons like a fourth-grader's soccer cleats.

The Equinox, which debuted in 2005, may fit the EPA standards for a compact SUV, but it is closer to a midsize in actual dimensions. And it is larger than most of the competition, including the Honda ...Read more

Auto Word: 2016 Camaro Redesign Digs Deep for Power, Pleasure

Automotive / Mark Maynard /

A 1,200-mile road trip that touched on four states over 2-1/2 days allowed some good "soak" time to get familiar with the 2016 Camaro SS. Chevrolet's "Find New Roads" media drive -- in a nationwide PR blitz through many regions of the contiguous 48 states -- was Chevy's way to introduce the new and sixth generation Camaro.

It was at times a ...Read more

Auto Word: Subcompact Mercedes GLA a Sly Beauty With Issues

Automotive / Mark Maynard /

SIn the fast-paced, urban landscape, the subcompact crossover has emerged as a gateway to a calm experience in heavy, workday traffic. These glorified wagons move at a tough pace to get through the mean and busy city streets. They then go home to fit into just about any legitimate parking space.

The GLA250 is sold in front or all-wheel drive (...Read more

Auto Word: Smaller Footprint of 3-Cylinder Focus Has Rewards

Automotive / Mark Maynard /

I am about to share something you may not believe until you experience it. And I wouldn't blame you. But Ford's 1.0-liter, three-cylinder engine is a mighty minion.

It is Ford's smallest engine around the world, and is available in the subcompact Fiesta and compact Focus sedan (today's tester) or the five-door hatchback. This turbocharged and ...Read more

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