Nissan Bumps Pathfinder Prices for 2015

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Nissan's popular seven-passenger crossover got a host of additional standard and optional features for 2015, and all trims levels get a modest price increase. Base two-wheel-drive models of the 2015 Pathfinder start at $30,395, including destination — $300 more than the 2014 version.

Related: 2015 Nissan Pathfinder: What's Changed

The 3.5-liter V-6 and an updated version of the continuously variable automatic transmission continue to 2015; no word yet if the new-for-2014 Pathfinder Hybrid model will return for 2015.

New features this year include blind spot warning and rear cross-traffic alert on SL and Platinum models; hill descent control for all-wheel-drive Pathfinders; a 120-volt outlet on SLs; a dual panoramic moonroof on Platinum trims and the SV model gets fog lights, an auto-dimming rearview mirror and heated side mirrors for 2015. Also new in the SL Tech Package is the Around View Monitor camera system as well as a tow hitch and harness. The SL Premium Package also gets an upgrade with navigation and the Around View Monitor system. Nissan also added a Family Entertainment Package for 2015 with a DVD entertainment system and dual 7-inch screens in the front row's head restraints.

Pathfinder S, SV, SL and Platinum trim levels in front- or all-wheel drive return for 2015; full pricing is below:

By Jennifer Geiger | October 21, 2014 | Comments (1)

DeLorean Motor Co. Takes Film Fans 'Back to the Future'

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Crazy to think for those of us who are old enough to have seen "Back to the Future" in its original run, but we've nearly reached that famed "future" date when Doc Brown flew Marty McFly 30 years into the future in a DeLorean time machine. Yes, one year from today will be Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2015, the date to which Doc and Marty jumped ahead on the space-time continuum, yet we're still waiting on those flying cars, hoverboards and power-lacing sneakers. One company, however, is making DeLorean time machines.

Related: Top 10 Movie Cars

Yes, you can travel back in time on a nostalgia trip in an honest-to-goodness DeLorean car courtesy of the DeLorean Motor Co., which continues to keep the short-lived, long-defunct brand running all these years later. It not only restores and sells traditional DeLoreans, the company outfits some to be replicas of the famed movie car ... at a price.

By Matt Schmitz | October 21, 2014 | Comments (1)

2015 Subaru Outback: Car Seat Check

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In its 2015 redesign, beloved family hauler the Subaru Outback continues to smartly straddle the line between a practical wagon and a rugged SUV, while getting subtle updates to its exterior styling, interior upgrades and improved fuel economy. Families will appreciate the new Outback's roomier cabin, cushier feel and an improved center storage bin that can hold larger items like an iPad. We last car-seat checked the Outback in 2012; that model proved as delightfully utilitarian as the vehicle's reputation. Can the 2015 live up to that easy-to-use, easier-to-love rep?

How many car seats fit in the second row? Two

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By Matt Schmitz | October 21, 2014 | Comments (0)

Parents As Driving Instructors: What Works?

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There will come a day when parents are the passengers and the kids are behind the wheel. Like all other aspects of parenting, it's good to remember that we are often not the first ones to teach our kids to drive, but because so few parenting books cover "Teaching Your Kid To Drive," we decided to write that chapter ourselves for National Teen Driver Safety Week.

Read More #FamilyCarAdvice

First off, teaching your kids about cars and safety can begin long before your child — forgive me, teen — gets behind the wheel for the first time. While they're driving, parents can discuss with their kids what's happening out on the road, what the street signs mean, why speed limits exist and how to look both ways when entering an intersection (even if you have the green light). My 12-year-old son and I recently had a conversation about what a protected left turn is. It was cool, and now he's always looking to see if there's an arrow and what color it is.

I talked to moms and dads of older teens to find out what kind of parent is the preferred driving coach and to gather tips. The panel is made up of parents whose kids have received their driving permits (so they can drive with a parent or guardian onboard) or driver's licenses.

By Sara Lacey | October 21, 2014 | Comments (0)

Dodge Prices 2015 Charger Lineup

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Hot on the 2015 Dodge Challenger's trail of burnt rubber comes its four-door muscle-car mate, the Charger. Chrysler has announced pricing on the newly updated Charger lineup — including the 707-horsepower SRT Hellcat — with the starting price of all but one model increasing by no more than $1,000. The base SE trim starts at $28,990, including a $995 destination charge. That's $1,000 more than the 2014 version, but Chrysler says it's the "most-equipped entry Charger model ever." The 2015 Charger is available in SE, SXT, R/T and SRT trims.

Related: 2015 Dodge Charger: First Look

Last year's SRT8 models are replaced by the SRT 392 and SRT Hellcat, the latter of which starts at a range-topping $64,990. Up from three in 2014, the lineup now offers four engines: the base 3.6-liter V-6, 5.7-liter V-8, 6.4-liter V-8 and the Hellcat's supercharged 6.2-liter V-8. For comparison, the 2015 Challenger starts at $27,990 with destination and tops out at $60,990 for the Hellcat, the 2014 Chrysler 300 starts between $32,390 and $50,926 for the SRT8 version, and fellow full-size sedan the 2014 Chevrolet Impala starts between $27,670 and $36,715 for the top LTZ style.

By Matt Schmitz | October 20, 2014 | Comments (0)

NHTSA Urges Quick Fix of Defective Airbags

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is counseling owners of vehicles affected by the massive Takata airbag recall to act fast to replace their defective airbags. The recall, expanded several times during the year, involves airbags that could deploy with too much pressure and cause injury. It affects millions of Toyota, Honda, Mazda, BMW, Nissan and General Motors vehicles.

Related: BMW, Chrysler, Ford Join Ever-Expanding Airbag Recall

Unsure if your vehicle is affected? Click here to look up your vehicle using NHTSA's Vehicle Identification Number tool. According to the government safety agency, the following vehicles are affected:

By Jennifer Geiger | October 20, 2014 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2002-2005 Lexus, Toyota and Pontiac Cars, Pickup Trucks, SUVs

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Vehicles Affected: Nearly 250,000 model-year 2002-05 Lexus SC luxury coupes and Toyota Sequoia SUVs, and 2003-05 Tundra pickup trucks, Corolla sedans and Matrix hatchbacks, and Pontiac Vibe hatchbacks, all originally sold or currently registered in high-humidity areas of southern Florida, along the Gulf Coast, Puerto Rico, Hawaii, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, Saipan and American Samoa

The Problem: The front passenger airbag inflators are susceptible to rupture in a crash, necessitating the deployment of the front passenger airbag. The inflator could rupture, causing metal fragments to strike and seriously injure the passenger-seat occupant or others.

The Fix: Toyota will notify owners of Toyota and Lexus vehicles, and GM will notify owners of Pontiac vehicles. Dealers will replace the passenger-side airbag inflator for free. As an interim measure if a replacement is not available, the dealer will disable the front passenger airbag and advise owners not to use the front passenger seat until a replacement inflator is installed. Toyota will begin notifying owners around Oct. 25; GM has not yet announced a notification schedule.

What Owners Should Do: Owners of Toyota and Lexus vehicles can call Toyota at 800-331-4331, and owners of Pontiac Vibes can call GM at 800-521-7300. Owners can also call the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236, or go to www.safercar.gov, for more info.

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

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By Matt Schmitz | October 20, 2014 | Comments (1)

New Honda HR-V, 2016 Acura ILX to Debut at 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show

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Honda and its Acura luxury division plan to debut at least two vehicles at next month's 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show. One is Honda's latest — and smallest — SUV, the HR-V; the first exterior images of the tiny crossover appeared last April. As we expected, Honda says the Fit-based HR-V will slot below the popular CR-V, which means it should compete against a burgeoning segment of entry-level crossovers like the Nissan Juke and Chevrolet Trax. Honda also confirmed the HR-V would have a lower price than the CR-V, which starts at $24,150 including destination.

Related: More 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show News

Acura, meanwhile, announced today it would unveil a "substantially new" 2015 ILX with a "potent new powertrain," updated styling and "substantially upgraded" cabin design. The brand released a teaser image of the compact sedan, above. It makes sense, as Acura moves to expand the ILX's role as the entry-luxury car in its lineup; both the TSX and TL have been succeeded by the TLX. But through September, ILX sales have amounted to just 12,854 cars — a figure beat by the Buick Verano, Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class and Audi A3/S3.

Stay tuned for full details and up-close impressions on both cars in our coverage of next month's auto show; press days are Nov. 18-20.

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By Kelsey Mays | October 20, 2014 | Comments (1)

2015 Cadillac Escalade Review

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"Like a linebacker in an expensive suit, the Escalade has dynamite looks and slick moves, and while its price matches foreign competitors, its sophistication falls just short," Cars.com reviewer Aaron D. Bragman said. Check out Bragman’s review for more.

2015 Cadillac Escalade Expert Review

Cars.com photo by Aaron D. Bragman

By Matt Schmitz | October 20, 2014 | Comments (0)

Hey, Parents! We're Sabotaging Our Teen Drivers

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As parents, we often subscribe to a "do as I say, not as I do" mentality. This is dangerously apparent with our teen drivers, and studies have shown that parents are unknowingly sabotaging their teen drivers by demonstrating that mentality. Because it's National Teen Driver Safety Week, let's take a look at the common mistakes parents make that may be hurting their teen drivers.

Read More #FamilyCarAdvice

Don't Text and Drive (But I Can): We beat teens over the head with the "never text and drive" message, yet they see us do it on a regular basis. According to a 2012 study by Liberty Mutual Insurance and Students Against Destructive Decisions, 91 percent of teens reported seeing their parents talk on cellphones while driving, and 59 percent witnessed their parents sending a text while driving.

Monkey see, monkey do. Teens mirror the behaviors they see: 90 percent of teens say they've talked on cellphones while driving, and 78 percent admitted to sending text messages while driving.

By Kristin Varela | October 20, 2014 | Comments (0)

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