Honda Cargo Wars: How Does 2016 HR-V Compare to Siblings?

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Being the middle child is tough. Your parents are always asking, "Why can't you be more like your older sister?" Meanwhile your bratty little brother gets away with murder. Despite being "born" last, the all-new 2016 Honda HR-V is the middle child in Honda's brood of compact family haulers, smaller than the CR-V crossover and bigger than the Fit subcompact hatchback. Since carrying capacity no doubt tops prospective buyers' lists, we thought we'd see how the HR-V stacks up against its five-passenger siblings.

Related: Research the 2016 Honda HR-V 

The HR-V compact crossover distinguishes itself from the CR-V and Fit with its sporty looks compared with those vehicles' more right-angle-heavy exterior designs; plus, it's about 10 inches shorter than the CR-V and 9 inches longer than the Fit, with a width measuring about 2 inches less than the former and 3 inches more than the latter. Inside, Honda promised the HR-V would provide "unmatched interior spaciousness and cabin versatility." Only real-world users can decide how well those promises will be fulfilled, but in terms of passenger volume, the HR-V certainly holds its own, measuring 100.1 cubic feet compared with the 2014 CR-Vā€™s 104 and the 2015 Fit's 96.

When it comes to cargo space, however, things get considerably more varied. Behind the rear seats, the HR-V has 24.3 cubic feet of room compared with the CR-V's 37.2 and the Fit's 16.6. Meanwhile, with the seats down, maximum cargo space for the HR-V increases nearly 2.5 times to 58.8 cubic feet. The Fit's max cargo space jumps by more than three times to 52.7 cubic feet, while the CR-V's nearly doubles to 70.9 cubic feet.

Check out the graphic below for a side-by-side comparison of cargo volume.

By Matt Schmitz | November 26, 2014 | Comments (1)

2016 Ford Explorer: Base Model Price Unchanged, New Platinum Trim is $53,495

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The refreshed Ford Explorer may have a new face, but it doesn't have a new base price: The 2016 Explorer starts at $31,595, according to Ford's consumer site, the same as the outgoing 2015 version; all prices include a destination charge. Ford plastered a bolder face on the 2016 SUV and added new features, a new turbocharged four-cylinder engine and addressed tech complaints on the inside by replacing touch-sensitive controls with tactile buttons.

Related: 2016 Ford Explorer: First Look

Other trim levels see an increase in pricing this year given the new content like a hands-free power liftgate, heated steering wheel and dual cameras included on the Limited model. Perhaps most interesting, however, is the pricing of the new luxury-oriented Platinum trim level.

By Joe Bruzek | November 25, 2014 | Comments (5)

Recall Alert: 9,000 2012-2014 BMW Vehicles

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Vehicles Affected: Nearly 9,000 BMW vehicles, including model-year 2014 328i Sports Wagons; 2012-14 BMW 320i sedans, 328i sedans, 320i xDrive sedans and 328i xDrive sedans; 2012-13 BMW 528i and 528i xDrive sedans; 2013-14 BMW X1 sDrive28i and X1 xDrive28i sports activity vehicles; 2013-14 BMW X3 xDrive28i sports activity vehicles; 2012-14 BMW Z4 sDrive28i roadsters; and 2014 BMW 428i and 428i xDrive coupes

The Problem: Due to insufficient lubrication, the vacuum pump that supplies brake power assistance may fail, causing a reduction in braking power and increasing the risk of a crash.

The Fix: BMW will begin notifying owners late this month, and dealers will install a locking ring in the camshaft to retain the camshaft seal disk in the proper location for free. This latest action is an expansion of a recall from earlier this year.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call BMW at 800-525-7417, 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 | November 24, 2014 | Comments (0)

Mitsubishi Concept XR-PHEV Photo Gallery (21 Photos)

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Mitsubishi says the plug-in electric hybrid crossover concept it unveiled this week at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show hints at the future stylistic direction its vehicles could take. If that's the case, designers must have been watching a lot of Mexican wrestling when they dreamed up the XR-PHEV judging by its intimidating countenance, which makes the vehicle look like its wearing a lucha libre mask, while the sweptback and downward-sloping look of its profile suggests the masked grappler has just launched himself off the top rope and is sailing through the air, about to drop an elbow on his opponent on the floor of the ring.

Related: More 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show Coverage

According to Mitsubishi Motors North America Executive Vice President Don Swearingen, the XR-PHEV had another objective besides showing off a bold new design. "We also brought it to L.A. to reinforce the message that Mitsubishi is here to stay in the United States," he said in a statement. "As we regrow the brand, we will introduce new models while updating existing ones, creating a new look and a new value proposition for the brand."

Check out the gallery below; Cars.com photos by Evan Sears.

By Matt Schmitz | November 23, 2014 | Comments (0)

2016 Fiat 500X: Up Close

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Fiat's most-recent four-door foray in the U.S. was the supremely ugly, yet versatile Fiat 500L. Much of our staff loved the space-efficient 500L, but I found it hard to look past its pimply, high school-faced awkwardness.

Related: More 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show Coverage 

I'm more onboard with the 2016 500X, Fiat's smaller newcomer with available all-wheel drive, meant to compete with the growing breed of smaller-than-compact SUVs like the Honda HR-V, Mazda CX-3 and Chevrolet Trax.

By Joe Bruzek | November 22, 2014 | Comments (0)

2015 Land Rover Discovery Sport: Up Close

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By now it should be evident that Land Rover's purchase by India's Tata Motors in 2008 was a very good thing. The company has had one hit after another, and the Discovery Sport looks like another one.

Related: More 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show Coverage

It's larger than the LR2 it replaces, as well as the Range Rover Evoque, and it takes on the styling direction seen in the Range Rover and Range Rover Sport, but with a more rounded nose to distinguish it a bit. It looks good from all angles. The only misstep I see is that the optional black roof looks odd with a wide, body-colored C-pillar, the only pillar that isn't black.

By Joe Wiesenfelder | November 22, 2014 | Comments (1)

2015 BMW X5 M and X6 M Photo Gallery (49 Photos)

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Dial M for motorsports. BMW is introducing the race-ready variants of its X5 sport activity vehicle and X6 sport activity coupe this week at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show, on track for a spring 2015 release. Consistent with their performance purposes, the X5 M and X6 M rock aggressive-looking racing cues such as enlarged scoops, 21-inch wheels, unique tiers, rear diffusers, quad tailpipes and monochrome blue or gray metallic paint.

Related: More 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show Coverage

Both the M and M boast sweet interior flourishes, too. Sporty cues in the cabin include a unique steering wheel, paddle shifters and gauges, Merino leather seats with contrast stitching and M badging, a simulated Alcantara headliner, a Nappa-covered dash and plenty of aluminum trim. The X5 M starts at $99,650 and the X6 M at $103,050, including destination.

Check out the gallery below; Cars.com photos by Evan Sears.

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

2016 Volvo XC90 Photo Gallery (33 Photos)

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Save for the instantly identifiable diagonal crosspiece logo that is Volvo's trademark, the 2016 XC90 three-row crossover injects some new flare into the Swedish automaker's familiar design. Updated cues include a waterfall grille with vertical bars, T-shaped daytime running lights Volvo likens to Thor's hammer and slightly ridic 22-inch wheels.

Related: More 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show Coverage

Also departing from garden-variety Volvo style, the seven-seat cabin has a horizontal, stacked dashboard. Other interior features include a crystal shifter, a leather-covered dash and a Bowers & Wilkins premium stereo with an air-ventilated subwoofer.

Check out the gallery below; Cars.com photos by Evan Sears.

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

Nissan Prices 2015 Murano SUV

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The third-generation 2015 Nissan Murano has made quite a splash, slated to arrive in showrooms early next month with its show-car styling and high-tech, luxurious interior. And now, Nissan has announced pricing for its premium SUV: The new model will start at $30,445, including the destination fee. That price is for the front-wheel-drive Murano S model; four trim levels will be offered overall, each with an all-wheel-drive option.

Related: More Nissan Murano News

The S all-wheel drive starts at $32,045, with just one package offered, a navigation system. The SV comes in at $33,505 for the front-wheel-drive model or $35,105 for the all-wheel-drive version. Only one package will be offered here as well, a Premium Package. Stepping up from there will be the leather-lined Murano SL for $37,835 with front-wheel drive and $39,435 for all-wheel drive. The top of the line is the Murano Platinum, starting at $39,885 for front-wheel drive and $41,485 for all-wheel drive. The SL and Platinum models also offer a Tech Package, with items such as NissanConnect, navigation, Around View monitor, Intelligent Key with push-button start, an 11-speaker Bose premium audio system and more. Available safety systems include blind spot warning, forward collision alert with emergency autonomous braking and rear cross-traffic alert.

Pricing for the various packages has not yet been provided by Nissan. The new Murano goes on sale Dec. 5 at Nissan dealerships nationwide.

Cars.com photo by Evan Sears

By Aaron Bragman | November 20, 2014 | Comments (0)

2016 Volvo XC90: Up Close

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The 2016 Volvo XC90 is one of Volvo's first steps in reviving the Swedish brand in the U.S., which has seen declining sales during the past 10 years. Volvo's new XC90 ā€” debuting at the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show ā€” could very well change how the general public views Volvo vehicles given the luxurious experience inside the all-new seven-passenger SUV.

Related: More 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show Coverage 

The seven-passenger XC90 is littered with high-quality materials that would look right at home inside a Mercedes-Benz S-Class, combined with technology including a massive touch-screen that wouldn't look out of place in a concept car ā€” think Tesla-Model-S-touch-screen big.

By Joe Bruzek | November 20, 2014 | Comments (1)

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