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2012 Honda CR-V Most Satisfying Mid-Size Crossover SUV

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Best in Class 2012 Mid-Size Crossover SUV:  Honda CR-V

2012 Honda CR-V Wins AutoPacific Vehicle Satisfaction Award

Owners of the all-new 2012 Honda CR-V Mid-Size XSUV give the vehicle an overwhelming win in AutoPacific’s 2012 Vehicles Satisfaction Award research with top ratings in forty, that is FORTY, of forty-eight attributes.  We won’t list all the wins.  It would take too much space, but let’s talk about the ratings of 4.5 or higher out of a possible 5.0 satisfaction rating points.  CR-V owners give the XSUV ratings 4.5 or higher in:  Overall Satisfaction, Exterior Size, Ease of Getting In and Out, Seating Capacity, Vehicle’s Reputation, Brand’s Reputation, Exterior Color, Braking, Handling, Reliability, Feeling Safe While Driving, Safety Features, Safety Ratings, Overall Quality and Durability.  There are only three ratings under 4.0 satisfaction rating points:  Recyclability, Collision Avoidance Technology and Price.  The CR-V 2012 VSA win is an example of overwhelming superiority in a very competitive product class.


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2012 Honda Pilot Most Satisfying Premium Mid-Size Crossover SUV

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Best in Class 2012 Premium Mid-Size Crossover SUV:  Honda Pilot

2012 Honda Pilot Wins AutoPacific Vehicle Satisfaction Award

Owners of the 2012 Honda Pilot give the Premium Mid-Size Crossover SUV top ratings in twelve of forty-eight rating categories in AutoPacific’s 2012 Vehicle Satisfaction Award research.  Pilot owners give the vehicle top ratings in Seating Capacity, Driver’s Seat Comfort, Flexible Seating, Ease of Loading Cargo, Interior Storage, Cupholders, Wheel Size and Style, Feeling Safe While Driving, Safety Features, Safety Ratings, Price, and Durability.  With a possible high score of 5.0 satisfaction rating points, a score of 4.5 or higher can be considered to be very good.  Pilot owners rated the Pilot at 4.5 or higher in:  Overall Satisfaction, Seating Capacity, Driver’s Seat Comfort, Ease of Loadingn Cargo, Vehicle’s Reputation, Brand’s Reputation, Handling, Reliable/Dependable, Feeling Safe While Driving, Safety Features, Safety Ratings, Quality, and Durability.  Pilot owners give the Pilot ratings under 4.0 satisfaction points in five attributes:  Fuel Economy, Cruising Range, Easy to Understand Controls, Recyclability, Collision Avoidance Technology.


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2012 Chevrolet Traverse Most Satisfying Large Crossover SUV

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Best in Class 2012 Large Crossover SUV:  Chevrolet Traverse

2012 Chevrolet Traverse Winner of AutoPacific's 2012 Vehicle Satisfaction Award

Owners of the 2012 Chevrolet Traverse give the Large SUV a photo-finish win over the Ford Flex while giving the Traverse top ratings in eighteen of forty-eight categories in AutoPacific’s 2012 Vehicle Satisfaction Award research.  The Traverse gets top marks for Cargo Space, Vehicle’s Reputation, Brand’s Reputation, Interior Storage, Braking, Fuel Economy, Easy to Use Controls, Cupholders, Tire Brand/Size/Appearance, Wheel Size and Style, Environmental Friendliness, Infotainment Technology, Dealership Experience, Recyclability, Advanced Powertrain Technology, Collision Avoidance Technology, Range and Warranty.  With a possible high score of 5.0 satisfaction rating points, 4.5 or higher can be considered very good.  Traverse owners rated the Large SUV above 4.5 rating points in:  Overall Satisfaction, Seating Capacity, Exterior Color, Reliable/Dependable,  and Feeling Safe While Driving.  Traverse owners, while the highest rated Large SUV for Fuel Economy, are least satisfied with their Traverse’s gas mileage.  Traverse owners rate five characteristics below 4.0 satisfaction rating points:  Fuel Economy, Range, Environmental Friendliness, Recyclability and Price.


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2012 Cadillac SRX Most Satisfying Luxury Crossover SUV

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Best In Class 2012 Luxury Crossover SUV:  Cadillac SRX

2012 Cadillac SRX Winner of AutoPacific's 2012 Vehicle Satisfaction Award

The Luxury Crossover SUV category is a very diverse segment with several very competitive entries.  Owners of the 2012 Cadillac SRX give the vehicle sufficient scores in importance and satisfaction to win the segment with only six top ratings among forty-eight characteristics measured in AutoPacific’s 2012 Vehicle Satisfaction Award research.   The SRX gets top marks for:  Brand of Audio System, Tire Brand/Size/Appearance, Wheel Size and Style, Dealership Experience, Price and Advanced Powertrain Technology. With a possible high score of 5.0 rating points for each attribute, a rating of 4.6 or higher can be considered to be very good.  SRX owners give the crossover SUV scores of 4.6 or higher in: Overall Satisfaction, Image, Vehicle’s Reputation, Brand’s Reputation, Exterior Color, Exterior Styling, Interior Styling, Handling, Fun to Drive, Reliability, Brand of Audio System, Dealership Experience, Feeling Safe While Driving, and Overall Quality.  Owners are least satisfied with five of SRX characteristics giving them a satisfaction rating of less than 4.0 satisfaction points:  Fuel Economy, Range, Visibility, Environmental Friendliness, and Recyclability.


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2012 Honda Civic: An Honest and Unbiased Review

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Honda just can’t seem to catch a break these days.  With the fallout from the tsunami, a profit sucking Japanese currency issue, the floods in Thailand, and the media in an uproar over the new Civic, well, Honda’s public relations team is working overtime.  So, is the Civic really the worst car out of Honda in years or has the segment just gotten that good?


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2011 F-150 EcoBoost: Raising the Bar…Again

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I need to give you full disclosure:  I love engines with forced induction.  Turbos and superchargers make me smile, well, most of the time.  My father had a Lincoln MKT EcoBoost when they first came out and I appreciated the idea of a turbo V6 but wasn’t particularly impressed with the the package.  The front-wheel biased all-wheel drive torque steer and transmission calibration never seemed to be as polished as I had hoped for in a vehicle of that price point.  It could use a dose of that torque vectoring system from the Focus to balance out the massive amount of power.  My opinion of the V6 EcoBoost from Ford was basically “meh”, as I never felt like the refinement was all there.  A stint in a Taurus SHO confirmed this fact for me.  Sure, it’s a stupid powerful powertrain but it was missing the harmony that made the engine mate up to the car like peanut butter and jelly.  


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2011 Land Rover LR4: The Best 4x4xFar?

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Although the fad of pavement pounders and soccer moms driving vehicles better suited for the Camel Trophy than the city playground is over, Land Rover continues to offer the LR4 for those who still demand the a vehicle with no compromises.  While Land Rover has never been known for quality, they have been known for their off-road prowess.  Jeep might be known for something similar, but Jeep doesn’t offer anything with the no compromises capability of the 2011 Land Rover LR4.  What other vehicle can move seven people off the beaten path in comfort and style and tow 7,000 pounds?


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Analysis: Ford & Toyota’s New “Hybrid Synergy”

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If you think back, GM developed the 2 Mode Hybrid system in collaboration with BMW and Daimler-Chrysler.  Chrysler had about a two month run of Durango and Aspen hybrids.  If you see one on the road you might consider it to be an exotic due to how rare it is.  BMW has a hybrid system in their X6, but it is for performance more than fuel economy.  Daimler has a RWD hybrid system in the Mercedes-Benz S Class, but the fuel economy hasn’t been anything to make headlines with.  While not being much of a success for any party involved in that collaboration, one GM engineer described the 2 Mode hybrid system to me as a “very expensive science project”.  What Ford and Toyota teamed up to do today looks to be more than a science experiment.


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2011 Chevrolet Volt: No Fear of the B.S.O.D. with this Tech-Laden Halo

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In November of 2010, General Motors delivered on a promise they made to start producing the Chevrolet Volt.  Just after production started I had the opportunity to spend a day with a Volt.  While it was a very interesting car to drive for a day, I wasn’t sure what it would be like to drive a vehicle that had the ability to be plugged in, so Chevrolet let me drive one for a week earlier this year.


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Short Take: Volkswagen Golf blue-e-motion

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Volkswagen is excited with the work they have completed thus far on the Golf blue-e-motion battery electric vehicle.  So excited, in fact, that I was recently able to drive one in Germany.


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