Recall Alert: 414,000 GM Sedans, Sports Cars, SUVs

2012BuickLaCrosseRecall

Vehicles Affected: More than 414,000 model-year 2011-12 Buick LaCrosse and Regal sedans, and Chevrolet Camaro sports cars, and 2010-12 Cadillac SRX, Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain SUVs, all equipped with power height adjustable driver and passenger seats

The Problem: The bolt that secures the driver and passenger power front-seat height adjuster may fall out, causing the seat to drop to the lowest vertical position. If the driver's seat unexpectedly drops, the distraction and altered seat position could affect the driver's control of the vehicle, increasing the risk of a crash. We first reported on the recall last week.

The Fix: GM will notify owners, and dealers will replace the height adjuster shoulder bolts for free. The automaker has not yet announced a notification schedule.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Buick at 800-521-7300, Cadillac at 800-458-8006, Chevrolet at 800-222-1020 or GMC at 800-462-8782. Owners also can 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 | July 29, 2014 | Comments (0)

What's the Most Affordable Compact SUV for 2014?

2014NissanRogue

If you're shopping for a compact SUV, the bevy of competitive options to choose from may overwhelm you. Since our last comparison test in 2012 new models from Jeep, Nissan and Toyota have gone on sale, and they're selling quite well.

Related: What's the Most Affordable Midsize Sedan for 2014

One other thing that has changed recently: Most models in this segment come with relatively well-equipped base levels, or with just a few options selected. That makes finding the most affordable versions easier, but it's not a simple task.

We've done the hard part and compiled the right trim levels that deliver expected features in this class and included the cost of gas over five years to determine the most affordable compact SUV amongst the ranks.

By David Thomas | June 18, 2014 | Comments (1)

Ford Escape Again Walks Away With 'Most-Stolen' Title

2013FordEscape

As stolen SUVs go, crooks are still most likely to abscond with the Escape. Once again, the Ford Escape topped the National Insurance Crime Bureau's list of most-stolen SUVs and crossovers. The Des Plaines, lll.-based nonprofit today released the 2014 SUV hot list, which examines model-year 2011-13 SUV and crossover thefts that occurred between Jan. 1, 2010, and Dec. 31, 2013.

Ford Escape Tops List of Most-Stolen SUVs

According to the NICB, a total of 21,711 SUVs and crossovers were reported stolen in that time; that's up from just less than 20,000 on the list released in February 2013. The consistently coveted Escape did its share in making up the difference in the increase. At 1,421 thefts, the Escape logged 407 more thefts than reported in the 2013 list, a nearly 29 percent spike. Ford also dominates the balance of the top three, with 1,140 Edge thefts and 958 Explorer thefts.

By Matt Schmitz | June 16, 2014 | Comments (2)

Several Midsize SUVs Fail IIHS Crash Test

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The 2014 Honda Pilot didn't do very well in Cars.com's $40,000 3-Row SUV Challenge, and it fared even worse in the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety's latest crash test. The Pilot is one of several SUVs that scored poorly in the IIHS's challenging small front overlap test.

More Safety News

The agency recently performed the test, meant to simulate a 40-mph crash of a vehicle's front corner into another vehicle, a tree or a pole, on nine midsize SUVs; six scored marginal or poor. Only the 2014 Chevrolet Equinox and GMC Terrain took home good ratings, earning them Top Safety Pick Plus status.

The GM twins join the redesigned-for-2014 Toyota Highlander, which was tested last year and also deemed a Top Safety Pick Plus. To qualify for the agency's highest award, a vehicle must earn a good or acceptable small overlap rating, good ratings in four other occupant protection tests and a rating of basic or higher for front crash prevention.

By Jennifer Geiger | April 7, 2014 | Comments (13)

Chevrolet Helps Drivers Pull Fast One With Corvette Data Recorder, 4G Wireless

CorvettePerformanceDataRecorder

Whether your need for speed manifests itself on the track or online, GM is offering two new ways to get a quick fix. This past weekend at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, the automaker announced a first-of-its-kind performance data recorder for the 2015 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray, which allows drivers to record video and audio of their hot laps and then use telemetry technology to analyze and improve their times. Meanwhile, the Stingray and a host of other 2015 Chevrolet models will also be available soon with an accelerated data connection to AT&T's high-speed 4G LTE network.

GM developed the performance data recorder with British motorsports-engineering firm Cosworth, and the system will be available on the 2015 Corvette; pricing will be announced later. The PDR's three major components are a high-definition camera mounted in the windshield header to record the driver’s point of view, a self-contained telemetry recorder that uses a GPS receiver to record performance data and a 32-gigabyte memory-card slot in the glove box for recording and transferring video and vehicle data of up to 13 hours.

By Matt Schmitz | January 6, 2014 | Comments (1)

Which New SUV Is Comparable to the Saturn Vue?

"Which new SUV is comparable to the Saturn Vue? I am driving my fourth Saturn Vue and have been really frustrated at the thought of replacing it. I already looked at the Equinox but passed because it is not comparable — it's bigger and pricier. Then I saw the Chevrolet Captiva! Problem solved — or so I thought (fleet only). If I can't buy a Captiva, I will go to another brand. I buy new, so a used Captiva is not an option in my mind."

Sue

By Matt Schmitz | October 20, 2013 | Comments (1)

GM Offers Siri Eyes Free Integration on Six More Vehicles

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Look for Siri Eyes Free Integration on a host of 2014 GM vehicles. Previously offered on the Chevrolet Sonic and Spark, Apple's voice-activated "intelligent assistant" — requiring neither the driver's hands nor eyes for use — will now be available on the Chevrolet Camaro, Cruze, Equinox, Malibu, SS and Volt, the automaker announced Monday.

Through the vehicles' available Chevrolet MyLink multimedia system, users with a compatible iPhone running the iOS 6 or iOS 7 operating systems can direct Siri to perform a number of tasks while they keep their eyes on the road and hands on the wheel. To use the feature, motorists connect their iPhone with the MyLink radio via Bluetooth, pair with the system and use the steering-wheel voice-activation button to begin and end sessions. In addition to the feature's no-look use, it prevents the iPhone's screen from lighting up, further mitigating distraction.

By Matt Schmitz | October 15, 2013 | Comments (1)

Which Cars Have Heated Seats with Separate Back and Bottom Heaters?

In the new Chevrolet Impala, I noticed the heated seats are two-stages like GM vehicles used to have. But many GMs I've been in recently have just the one setting for bottom and back combined. Is this GM-wide? Which vehicles have the two-setting heaters?

Anonymous

By Rick Popely | September 29, 2013 | Comments (1)

Which Midsize SUV Is Safe, Reliable and Fuel-Efficient?

"Which midsize SUV is safe, reliable and fuel-efficient?"

Anonymous

2013ChevroletEquinox

Several SUVs may fit that description, depending on what you consider fuel-efficient and what qualifies as midsize. Here are five suggestions: Chevrolet Equinox, Honda Crosstour and CR-V, and Toyota Highlander and RAV4.

All have been rated Top Safety Picks by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and at least some versions of those models have EPA highway mileage ratings of 25 mpg or more.

In addition, all have performed well in recent reliability measurements by J.D. Power and Associates. For example, the Equinox had the fewest problems among compact SUVs in the 2012 Vehicle Dependability Study and the RAV4 was second highest among all SUVs in the 2013 study.

Although you asked about midsize SUVs, we're including smaller models because of their higher fuel-economy ratings. Versions of the Equinox, CR-V and RAV4 top 30 mpg in EPA highway estimates. Among midsize SUVs, ratings of 30 mpg or more are rare, and the list shrinks with all-wheel drive.

Several other SUVs may meet all or most of your criteria, depending on how flexible you are about size. We suggest you check crash-test ratings on the Cars.com Research page, which is found at the Safety & Recalls tab, and tap the resources of the Cars.com Vehicle Recommender to find models that offer the fuel efficiency you desire, other features you may want and fit within your budget.

Have a car question you'd like us to answer? Send us an email at tips@cars.com.

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By Rick Popely | August 11, 2013 | Comments (4)

Do All- and Four-Wheel-Drive SUVs Require More Maintenance Than Two-Wheel-Drive Ones?

2013LandRoverLR2
Some do, some don't, and it often depends on whether the vehicle is used in what manufacturers describe as "severe" driving conditions, such as towing, driving through water or hardcore off-road use.

Most SUVs available today are car-based crossover models, so they aren't intended for off-road driving, but they can be used for towing, in dusty or muddy conditions, heavy stop-and-go driving and other such conditions that qualify as severe. In those cases, you might need to change the transfer case and differential oil periodically instead of just having it inspected. If you drive any vehicle for extended periods under severe conditions, you should perform other routine maintenance items more often, such as oil and transmission-fluid changes, so that isn't unique to all-wheel- and four-wheel-drive vehicles.

By Rick Popely | July 9, 2013 | Comments (0)

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