By Sue Mead.
No matter what climate zone you reside in, spring is the perfect time to clean out the cobwebs of your home, spend some time in the great outdoors, and spruce up your car-perhaps, it’s even time to look for a new model. We chose four updated vehicles to try out so we could share their fun attributes; more premium cabins, upgraded electronics and safety, and more standard features than ever. You might want to test drive one of these for yourself choosing the best fit for your lifestyle. And, by the way, in case you hadn’t heard, the American road trip is back: we hope you’ll take one soon!
2018 Nissan Pathfinder
This three-row crossover that holds seven was recently revised. It comes in front-and all-wheel-drive models. For 2018, it gets automatic emergency braking standard on all trims, plus a new rear door alert system that reminds to check in the back, if something is left behind. SL models can now be available with the Midnight Edition package, adding 20-inch black alloy wheels, black side mirror covers, and a black roof spoiler.
The 2018 Nissan Pathfinder is powered by a 3.5-liter V-6 with 284 hp. and 259 lb.-ft. of torque mated to a CVT transmission. There’s 16 cu. ft. of cargo space in the rear, up to 42.4 to 47.8 cu. ft. behind the second row, and 79.8 cubic feet behind the front seats. Standard are an 8.0-inch touchscreen, a multi-information display, a rearview camera, tri-zone climate control, keyless entry/start, 18-inch alloy wheels, and Bluetooth connectivity.
Higher trims get larger alloy wheels, parking sensors, remote start, heated and ventilated front seats, leather upholstery, Nissan’s Around View Monitor, a heated steering wheel, a power liftgate, a Bose premium audio system, LED headlights, and a panoramic sunroof. Automatic emergency braking and forward collision warning are now standard while other active safety tech like blind spot warning, rear cross-traffic alert, Moving Object Detection, and adaptive cruise control are available only on higher trim levels. It starts at $31,040.
For more information visit: https://www.nissanusa.com/suvs/pathfinder
2018 GMC Terrain
This midsized premium SUV will coddle you in an up-scale cabin that doubles as a mobile office with standard 4GLTE Wi-Fi hotspot connectivity, 4 USB ports and power outlets. The redesigned ute is available in SL (starting at $25,970), SLE ($28,795), SLT ($32,295), and Denali ($38,495) front-drive versions; also available with AWD ($1,750).
There are three new turbocharged powertrains, plus greater refinement and versatility to adapt to customers’ needs today, and more available advanced safety technologies than ever before. Bolder design brings signature cues with stronger, sharper, and more sculpted grille and lighting. Denali trim steps up with standard LED headlamps, a signature satin-chrome grille, 19-inch ultra-bright machined aluminum wheels, and unique accents outside; the interior gets logos and piping on the front seats, plus standard heated steering wheel, navigation, Bose premium seven-speaker sound system, and hands-free programmable power liftgate.
Up to 63.3 cubic feet of storage. Three all-new turbocharged engines have fuel-saving start/stop technology; standard is 1.5-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine that produces 170 horsepower and 203 lb.-ft. of torque mated to a nine-speed automatic. Optional is a 252-hp 2.0-liter four-cylinder that boasts 260 lb.-ft. of torque and 3,500-pound max towing. A 1.6-liter turbodiesel option pairs with a six-speed automatic that gets 137 horsepower /240 lb.-ft. of torque, along with fuel economy of 28/39/32 (FWD) or 28/38/32.
For more information visit: http://www.gmc.com/gmc-life/suvs/introducing-the-all-new-2018-terrain
2018 Ford Mustang
This prestigious icon gets updates that add power and panache. It’s available in EcoBoost, EcoBoost Premium, GT and GT Premium editions and Fastback and Convertible body styles, along with special packages. The Performance Pack Level 2 adds a collection of drive-enhancing components like aerodynamically-balanced, high-performance splitter and a rear spoiler crafted to add downforce for high-speed cornering.
Styling is more aerodynamic and athletic, with a leaner, meaner front and rear-end design; LED lighting; and standard dual-tip exhausts. GTs get quad-tips. An all-new 12-inch LCD customizable digital instrument cluster created by ex-video gamers can be personalized with different screen layouts, 26 color options, displays for up to eight gauges and unique views for normal/snow/wet, sport, and track/drag modes. Also new is heated leather steering wheel; SYNC Connect and a collection of updated driver-assist features, including pre-collision assist with pedestrian detection and automatic emergency braking; distance alert; lane-departure warning; lane-keeping assist; and driver alert systems.
An available FordPass app for smartphones provides access to start, lock, unlock, and locate your car. A quiet or stealth-mode remote start that can be programmed to keep neighbors happy. A 2.3-liter four-cylinder brings 310 horsepower and 350 lb.-ft. of torque, while the reworked 5.0-liter gets 460/ 420 lb.-ft. A revised six-speed manual is standard; optional is a new 10-speed auto. Paddles shifters make quick and fun shifting.
For more information visit: https://www.ford.com/cars/mustang/
2018 Dodge Challenger GT
The all-wheel-drive Dodge Challenger GT is the world’s first–and only—all-wheel-drive muscle coupe. The technologically-advanced drive system not only provides excellent all-season performance and maintains Challenger’s fun-to-drive character, regardless of road conditions.
Dodge’s award-winning 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine is paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission for 305 hp./ 268 lb.-ft. of torque and an estimated fuel economy of 18 city/27 highway/21 combined. Steering-wheel mounted, die-cast paddle shifters and a Sport mode make quicker gear changes Taller and longer, this wide-bodied, third-generation model carries aggressive Dodge attitude in its four-headlamp split grille and pronounced and functional power bulge hood. A rear decklid spoiler, LED halo headlamps, and LED tail lamps add flair.
Appealing is the 1970-inspired high-sill center console and driver-focused instrument panel and the option to adorn the interior with a wide variety of trims; heated and ventilated front seats; a Uconnect 8.4-inch touchscreen display with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto; and six Alpine speakers with 276-watt amplifier. Standard are ParkSense rear park assist and rear camera, a heated steering wheel with power tilt and telescoping column, a universal garage door opener, and aluminum bezels and bright pedals. New for 2018 are F8 Green and IndiGo Blue paint options. It has 19-inch aluminum wheels with painted pockets wrapped in 235/55R19 all-season performance tires. It starts at $33,495.
For more information visit: https://www.dodge.com/challenger.html
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