Mike West Road Test
This Made In Georgia SUV comes in various trims. We lucked out and drove the Limited version with every option you would ever need, or not
The Mitsubishi I-MiEV. It’s small, and minimalistic compared to other offerings like the Nissan Leaf and the Ford Focus Electric. That’s good and bad.
And Mazdas are fun to drive. They handle like go carts. The Mazda3’s steering is precise and on-center and the seats are comfortable and supportive.
We took the Subaru on a long trip and the more I drove it, the more I liked it, except for the Plasma Green color. It looks like a popsicle on wheels. This is Subarus first hybrid and they hit it out of the park. You also get a lot of car for the money. The 2014 XV Crosstrek Hybrid comes with a rearview camera, heated front seats,bluetooth, an auxiliary input and push-button start.
I am a sucker for German engineered vehicles and I was immediately smitten with the VW. It comes with a 3-liter 240 horsepower clean diesel engine. Boy has diesel come a long way. No more waiting for the glow plug to warm up, no more blue smoke, and no more smell. That’s probably why they have stickers reminding you what type of fuel this beast drinks. The VW gets 20 MPG city and 29 MPG highway.
The Pathfinder is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 making 260HP. It also comes with a continuously variable transmission. Some people love them, some people don’t. It’s not exactly responsive. I never felt that sweet spot between the power plant and the transmission.
Powered by a 3.6-liter V6, the Journey has plenty of power and delivers decent gas mileage for a large car, coming in at 17 MPG city and 25 MPG on the highway.
West: Once in a while, you get behind the wheel of a new car and say oh wow! The 2014 Mazda 3 with the 2.5 liter engine is an “OH Wow” car.
West: Everyone who stopped me made sure I knew that they knew I was driving the hamster called. The 2014 Kia Soul is a front-wheel drive hatchback offered in three trim levels: Base, Plus and Exclaim.
West: And now we have two. Two hybrids that I’ve tested recently that aren’t a bore to drive. First, the Ford C-MAX. Compared to the Toyota Prius, it’s so much more engaging and fun. And now for the new Honda Accord Hybrid. Wow!