Honda Boosts 2015 Fit's Gas Mileage

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The redesigned 2015 Honda Fit receives a much-needed fuel economy boost over the outgoing model's wimpy 31 mpg combined rating with automatic transmission. For 2015, Honda bumps the Fit's EPA ratings as high as 36 mpg combined (33/41 mpg city/highway) on LX trim levels with the optional automatic transmission.

2015 Honda Fit Expert Review

New engine and transmission technology unlock the improved mileage now that the engine uses direct injection and a new continuously variable automatic transmission, which replaces a conventional five-speed automatic. Don't do the CVT cringe just yet, however; Cars.com reviewer Kelsey Mays was impressed by the Fit's drivability with the CVT in his review of the 2015.

By Joe Bruzek | April 10, 2014 | Comments (11)

The 2015 Subaru WRX Looks Better in Black (17 Photos)

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The 2015 Subaru WRX drew mixed opinions from our editors at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show where a WRX clad in a striking red exterior debuted. Naysayers didn't think Subaru went far enough with an aggressive design, while others counted on the STI to be the aggressive and over-the-top model.

2015 Subaru WRX: Up Close

As one of those among the disappointed, the WRX's styling redeemed itself once I began testing a 2015 WRX painted Crystal Black Silica at our home base in Chicago. Cars always look better in black, right? The black exterior seems to mask what I thought were awkward proportions between the rear wheel arch and rear quarter panel; there's a lot of body back there and not a lot of wheel to fill it.

By Joe Bruzek | April 8, 2014 | Comments (4)

2014 Chevrolet Impala Ownership Costs: First Quarter

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We've spent money on fuel and floormats for our 2014 Chevrolet Impala after three months and 3,000 miles of driving, but little else. The Impala is one of our Cars.com long-term test cars and our Best of 2014 winner.

More on Our Long-Term Fleet

The Impala's OnStar online vehicle diagnostic information tells us to expect an oil change at 5,300 miles, but even then, we don't expect maintenance to be an ownership cost. Our Impala is backed by Chevrolet's two-year/24,000-mile maintenance program that includes oil and filter changes, tire rotations and a 27-point inspection for up to four scheduled services within the program's term.

By Joe Bruzek | April 3, 2014 | Comments (0)

2014 Mitsubishi Mirage Real-World Cargo Space

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Mitsubishi has an answer for those asking where all the no-frills, super-lightweight subcompact cars with big gas mileage and a low MSRP have gone. The 2014 Mirage is of that ilk, with up to 40 mpg combined EPA fuel-economy ratings and a starting price of $13,790 with destination and a manual transmission; add $1,000 for the automatic transmission and its 40 mpg combined rating.

2014 Mitsubishi Mirage Review

The four-door hatchback's micro size doesn't leave much room for rear passengers or cargo. Frugal commuters may not put too much importance on how many golf bags fit in the hatch without folding the seats — zero, actually — but the Mirage's small size results in a fuel-friendly 2,000 pounds.

By Joe Bruzek | March 13, 2014 | Comments (3)

2014 Nissan Versa Note Real-World Cargo Room

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The 2014 Nissan Versa Note offers an unusual amount of interior room compared to its subcompact peers. Rarely does a small hatchback have enough rear-seat legroom and headroom to make a 6-foot-tall adult feel at home in the backseat.

2014 Nissan Versa Note Review

You may expect equally impressive numbers from the cargo area, but think again. The Versa Note's cargo room isn't as noteworthy as its passenger space with a maximum of only 38.3 cubic feet when the rear seat is folded.

By Joe Bruzek | February 21, 2014 | Comments (0)

2014 Chevrolet Impala Mileage Update: 2,162 Miles

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The 2014 Chevrolet Impala we thoroughly tested for Cars.com's $38,000 Full-Size Sedan Challenge took home the comparison's top honors by besting six of its competitors. The mileage portion wasn't as much of a win for the Impala; it finished midpack and averaged 26.3 mpg compared to the best sedan's 30.2 mpg (Toyota Avalon) over our 200-mile route.

Follow Our Long-Term Fleet

As Impala owners, we're going to dive deeper into the V-6 sedan's 19/29/22 mpg city/highway/combined fuel economy rating over the thousands of miles we plan to accumulate during the next year. We expect the comfy Impala to be a go-to in our fleet over the summer once road-trip season begins.

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

2015 Chrysler 200: Explaining the Trim Levels

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A redesigned player enters the mid-size sedan segment about twice a year, making it one of the most hotly contested segments as well as a best-selling one. The current-generation Chrysler 200's sales for 2013 were 122,480, which was near the bottom of the mid-size sedan segment. It garnered roughly a third of the Honda Accord's 366,678 yearly sales, which is the country's second best-seller to the Toyota Camry and its 408,484 in yearly sales.

2015 Chrysler 200 Up Close

The 2015 Chrysler 200 only has one direction to go when it hits dealerships this spring. Potential buyers of the slickly styled redesigned sedan will be confronted with varying standard features on the four trims levels, including two engine choices and front- or all-wheel drive.

By David Thomas | January 24, 2014 | Comments (6)

2014 Ford Fiesta EcoBoost SFE: Quick Drive

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Cars.com reviewer Kelsey Mays and I recently went for a quick spin in a 2014 Ford Fiesta equipped with the new turbocharged 1.0-liter three-cylinder engine, which boasts EPA gas mileage ratings of 32/45/37 mpg city/highway/combined. It is the latest of a trio of gas-only models hitting the market that nip at the heels of hybrid cars. The EcoBoost Fiesta proves remarkably drivable ... if you don't mind adjusting how you operate its five-speed manual transmission.

By Joe Wiesenfelder | December 26, 2013 | Comments (17)

Volkswagen Jetta GLI Celebrates 30 Years With Special Edition

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Volkswagen's high-performance Jetta GLI has been around since 1984 when Volkswagen swapped go-fast goodies from its GTI cars into the Jetta body. To commemorate 30 years, Volkswagen is introducing an Edition 30 package on the 2014 GLI in early 2014.

Today's GLI features a 210-horsepower, turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine with 120 more ponies than the original's 90 hp. A sports suspension, 17- or 18-inch wheels, upgraded brakes, six-speed manual transmission and available six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission make up the remainder of the GLI's sports package. Sports seats and sports pedals decorate the interior.

By Joe Bruzek | December 20, 2013 | Comments (3)

2014 Ford Fusion Hybrid: Chasing 47 MPG

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Last year, we weren't the only ones to observe less-than-stellar fuel economy from the then-new 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid compared to its 47/47/47 mpg city/highway/combined EPA rating. Other publications and owners also reported mileage lower than the EPA ratings. The pile of complaints didn't fall on deaf ears.

In August 2013, Ford released software updates to the 2013 Fusion Hybrid and other hybrids to modify various hybrid parameters for improved fuel economy, especially in cold weather. Official EPA estimates haven't been revised, but we recently tested a 2014 with the updates. Our number to beat was 40.63 mpg recorded with a 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid tested last year. So how did the 2014 model fare during our drive?

By Joe Bruzek | December 12, 2013 | Comments (34)

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