What You Need to Know About the New 2016 Mercedes-AMG GT S

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A new sports car from Mercedes aims at a segment it hasn't played in before, and it's one that's got some tough competition. Our initial tests find it does the job admirably too.

It also heralds an odd name change. The GT S omits Benz entirely from the car's name. Find out more about the 2016 Mercedes-AMG GT S below:

Snapshot

  • Starting price: $130,825, including a destination fee
  • Competes with: Aston Martin V8 Vantage, Audi R8, BMW M6, Dodge Viper, Maserati GranTurismo, Nissan GT-R, Porsche 911 Turbo
  • On sale: April 2015

 

What We Like

  • Lightning fast transmission
  • Glorious V-8 exhaust note
  • Versatility from street to track
  • Styling

 

What We Don't

  • Poor visibility
  • Tablet-like navigation screen
  • Numerous buttons

 

Cars.com First Drive

More Details and Photos

Pricing Information

 

Cars.com photo by Aaron Bragman

By David Thomas | January 30, 2015 | Comments (0)

Gas Price Freefall Stalls

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The streak of consecutive daily declines in U.S. gasoline prices ended earlier this week as prices rose in several states, but the party may not be over for motorists who have gotten used to spending less and less at the pump.

Related: What Was the Best-Selling Car in 2014?

The national average for regular unleaded stood at $2.04 Thursday, according to the AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report. That was unchanged from a week ago, but up a penny from Monday. Pump prices jumped by double digits in some Great Lakes states during the past week, which AAA said was due to refinery issues in that region.

Widespread price declines at the pump could resume soon because U.S. crude oil was trading at less than $45 a barrel on news that oil stockpiles have hit the highest level since records began in 1982. U.S. oil prices closed Wednesday at $44.45 per barrel, the lowest since March 2009. Oil accounts for more than half the cost of a gallon of gas.

Even with the current glut of oil, gas prices are expected to rise starting in the spring when refineries shut down for routine maintenance, temporarily crimping the supply in the areas they serve, and then switch over to summer gas blends that cost more to produce. In addition, motorists typically drive more during the warm months, increasing demand.

Forecasters, though, doubt that pump prices will come close to the 2014 peak of $3.70.

By Rick Popely | January 30, 2015 | Comments (0)

IIHS: Late-Model SUVs Have Lowest Driver Death Rate; Small Cars Have the Highest

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Remember the old warning of SUVs rolling over and killing you? Thanks to the spread of electronic stability systems, the opposite is now true. Late-model SUVs have the lowest driver death rates among all cars, according to a new study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. In fact, the rollover death rate for model-year 2011 vehicles is 75 percent lower than it was among 2004 model-year cars.

Related: Study: Half of Young Driver Fatalities Were in Vehicles at Least 11 Years Old

IIHS analyzed driver death rates for 2011 models and 2008-2010 versions of the same cars (not a previous generation) from the 2009 through 2012 calendar year. During the observed period, two models accounted for zero driver deaths: the Honda Odyssey minivan and the Subaru Legacy sedan. Certain versions of seven other models had zero driver deaths, too: the front-wheel-drive Kia Sorento and all-wheel-drive or four-wheel-drive versions of the Audi A4, Lexus RX 350, Mercedes-Benz GL-Class, Toyota Highlander Hybrid, Toyota Sequoia and Volvo XC90. Other versions of those models either had higher death rates or too small a sample size, IIHS spokesman Russ Rader told us, and the study was too far along by the time 2013 fatality data arrived late last year.

In total, five of the nine zero-death cars were SUVs. By contrast, eight of the 10 cars with the highest driver death rates were small cars:

By Kelsey Mays | January 29, 2015 | Comments (0)

Kia Teases Concept Ahead of the Chicago Auto Show

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It sure is cold and blustery here in Chicago; it looks like Kia's getting ready for next month's Chicago Auto Show with a snow-capable new concept. The automaker released a teaser image of the "advanced and capable" electric all-wheel-drive (e-AWD) concept.

Related: Chicago Auto Show News

Details are slim, but Kia says the new concept is aimed at active urbanites and "intended to enable a wide array of outdoor activities from skiing and snowboarding, to camping, hiking and mountain biking." That tall order suggests it's an SUV, but the concept's front end looks very Soul-like. Could an all-wheel-drive Soul be coming to the automaker's lineup? We'll know more when the e-AWD concept debuts at the show on Feb. 12.

Manufacturer image

By Jennifer Geiger | January 29, 2015 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2011-2012 Toyota Avalon

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Vehicles Affected: Approximately 52,000 model-year 2011-12 Toyota Avalon sedans

The Problem: Toyota is reporting that if items in the trunk come into contact with one of the audio system's subwoofer wires, it could be dislocated and a short circuit might occur. This increases the risk of a fire. The automaker is not aware of any crashes or injuries related to this recall.

The Fix: Toyota has not announced details of the fix but has said that in the interim, dealers will disconnect the rear subwoofer.

What Owners Should Do: Toyota has not yet provided an owner notification schedule. Owners can call Toyota at 800-331-4331 or visit www.toyota.com/recall for more information.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

More Recalls

By Jennifer Geiger | January 29, 2015 | Comments (0)

2015 Toyota Sienna: Car Seat Check

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Toyota updated its minivan for 2015 and while most of the changes are cosmetic, like tweaked front-end styling outside and a new control layout and nicer materials inside, parents should be happy about a useful addition to the third row. For 2015, the Toyota Sienna now has two sets of Latch anchors in its third row, up from one.

More Car Seat Checks

The 2015 Sienna performed well in our Car Seat Check thanks to loads of legroom room, but hidden second- and third-row tether anchors kept it from earning more top grades. The Sienna is available with a three-passenger second-row bench seat or a pair of captain's chairs; our model had the captain's chairs.

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

How many car seats fit in the third row? Two

By Jennifer Geiger | January 29, 2015 | Comments (1)

2015 GMC Yukon XL Real-World Cargo Space

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The redesigned 2015 GMC Yukon comes in two varieties: large (Yukon) and super-sized (Yukon XL). The Yukon's cargo space didn't wow us: Despite its large exterior footprint, it only has 15.3 cubic feet of space behind the third row. "Cargo space behind the third row is surprisingly small," wrote Cars.com reviewer Kristin Varela in her review of the "large" Yukon. The 2015 Yukon as well as the Yukon XL's cargo space measures smaller than the previous generation.

Related: Research the 2015 GMC Yukon XL

Stepping up to the super-sized Yukon XL provides much more room with more than 20 inches of additional length from a 14-inch longer wheelbase. The plus-sized XL doubles the cargo space behind the third row to 38.9 cubic feet of space. Overall room for the 2015 Yukon XL with the second and third rows folded increases from the Yukon's 94.7 cubic feet to the XL's 121.1 cubic feet.

See how well common cargo items fit in the Yukon XL's cargo space, below.

By Joe Bruzek | January 29, 2015 | Comments (0)

What You Need to Know About the 2015 Toyota Camry

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The redesigned 2015 Toyota Camry looks a little different but feels and performs the same as the old one — meaning the best reason to buy a new one is because you like the one you already have. Here is an overview from the Cars.com staff:

Snapshot

  • Starting price: $23,795, including a destination fee
  • Competes with: Chevrolet Malibu, Chrysler 200, Ford Fusion, Honda Accord, Mazda6, Nissan Altima, Subaru Legacy
  • On sale: Now

 

What We Like

  • Roominess and visibility
  • Decent power from either engine
  • Fuel efficiency
  • Build quality

 

What We Don't

  • Interior materials
  • Gaping front grille
  • Firm ride (SE trim)
  • Wind and road noise

 

Cars.com Expert Review

2015 Toyota Camry Car Seat Check

$27,000 Midsize Sedan Challenge Results

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Cars.com photo by Evan Sears

 

By David Thomas | January 29, 2015 | Comments (2)

2015 Nissan Murano Review

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"The redesigned 2015 Nissan Murano is a quiet, comfortable, roomy five-seat SUV that's perfectly executed for empty-nesters or others who prize a spacious cabin and cargo area, but who have no desire for a third row," says Cars.com reviewer David Thomas.

2015 Nissan Murano Expert Review

By Jennifer Geiger | January 28, 2015 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: Certain 2013-2014 Nissan and Infiniti Crossovers

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Vehicles Affected: Approximately 170,665 model-year 2013-14 versions of the Nissan Pathfinder crossovers manufactured between June 20, 2012, and Nov. 18, 2013; model-year 2014 Pathfinder Hybrids manufactured between July 18 and Nov. 18, 2013; model-year 2013 Infiniti JX35 crossovers manufactured between Nov. 29, 2011, and June 14, 2013; model-year 2014 Infiniti QX60 crossovers manufactured between May 16 and Nov. 18, 2013; and model-year 2014 QX60 Hybrids manufactured between July 18 and Nov. 18, 2013.

The Problem: In these vehicles, the hood release cable assembly may have been installed incorrectly, so the hood may not latch properly. This could cause the hood to open while the vehicle is being driven, increasing the risk of a crash.

The Fix: Dealers will modify the angle of the hood release mechanism to provide additional length to the release cable for free.

What Owners Should Do: Nissan has not yet provided an owner notification schedule. Owners can call Nissan at 800-647-7261 or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at 888-327-4236 for more information.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

More Recalls

By Jennifer Geiger | January 28, 2015 | Comments (0)

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