Recall Alert: 226,000 Nissan, Infiniti Sedans and SUVs

2003NissanMaximaRecall

Vehicles Affected: More than 226,000 model-year 2002-03 Nissan Maxima sedans and Pathfinder SUVs, and Infiniti I35 sedans and QX4 SUVs, as well as 2002-04 Nissan Sentra sedans and 2003 Infiniti FX crossovers

The Problem: A defect in the passenger-side front airbag could produce excessive internal pressure causing the inflator to rupture upon deployment; this could result in metal fragments striking and seriously injuring occupants. This expansion of an earlier action involving a massive recall of vehicles from multiple automakers using airbags manufactured by Japan's Takata Corp. addresses both the passenger-side front airbags that were originally installed in the vehicles, as well as replacement airbags that may have been installed as replacement service parts. For example, a replacement airbag may have been installed if a vehicle had been in a crash necessitating the replacement of the passenger-side front airbag.

The Fix: Nissan will begin notifying owners Aug. 11, and dealers will replace airbags on all vehicles in which defective airbags may have been installed either as original equipment or as a replacement; repairs will be made for free.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Nissan at 800-647-7261 or 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 28, 2014 | Comments (0)

2015 Subaru WRX Photo Gallery

Cheap Speed Challenge: 2015 Subaru WRX Premium

The 2015 Subaru WRX finished second in our $30,000 Cheap Speed Challenge. "You really have to experience its neck-snapping off-the-line acceleration to appreciate it," said one of our judges. Check out our gallery below of the WRX up close and on the track.

Click on any image for a larger version.

Cars.com photos by Evan Sears

By Matt Schmitz | July 28, 2014 | Comments (0)

Who Will Be Able to Buy Aston Martin's New Ultra-Luxury Sedan?

Lagonda_Teaser

Remember the boxy Aston Martin Lagonda sedan from the 1970s? It was a striking beast that was representative of its time, and it's still sought after by collectors some 40 years later. Now Aston Martin is set to bring back a fully updated version of the Lagonda super-sedan built off of the company's own VH platform, the same one that forms the basis for the Aston Martin Rapide sedan and Vanquish coupe.

Related: 2014 Aston Martin Rapide S First Look

There's a catch, however; the new Lagonda will only be available to buyers in the Middle East, and even then it will be offered by invitation only. Basically, unless you're a sheik with a pre-existing collection of Aston Martin cars, you're out of luck. Details have not yet been published about the car itself, aside from a couple obscured photos and the fact that the car will be hand-built at the company's Gaydon, U.K., facility, which is the same one that built the bespoke One-77 supercar.

Each car will also be made to order and likely be unique. It will feature carbon-fiber body panels and styling that evokes the original 1976 Lagonda sedan, updated with some modern touches. Pricing has not been announced, and given the wording in Aston Martin's press release, it may never be announced to anyone except those invited to buy one. Expect to start seeing early examples of the new Lagonda around the start of 2015.

Manufacturer image

By Aaron Bragman | July 25, 2014 | Comments (1)

Recall Alert: 2003-04 Mazda6, 2004 RX-8

2003Mazda6Recall

Vehicles Affected: More than 18,000 model-year 2003-04 Mazda6 cars and model-year 2004 RX-8 sports cars

The Problem: A defect in the passenger side frontal airbag may produce excessive internal pressure, causing the inflator to rupture upon deployment of the device; metal fragments could strike and seriously injure occupants. This latest action is an expansion of a 2013 recall related to the ongoing problem with airbag systems manufactured by Japan's Takata Corp., a major world supplier of the devices, involving numerous automakers.

The Fix: Mazda will begin notifying owners in August, and dealers will replace the defective airbag inflator for free.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Mazda at 800-222-5500, 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 25, 2014 | Comments (0)

Top 10 Most Overlooked New Cars

2014Mazda6

Every year hundreds of new-car models are introduced and enter the research process for millions of car shoppers. The dizzying number of choices sometimes shrouds from the masses what are good cars.

More Top 10s

Here are 10 cars that Cars.com's editors agree are overlooked due to no fault of each vehicle's own substantial merits.

 

1. 2015 Mazda6

The Mazda6 is one of the rare family sedans that is both fun to drive and fuel-efficient; it's rated as high as 28/40/32 mpg city/highway/combined with an automatic transmission and the optional GT Technology Package, which includes regenerative braking and active grille shutters. But even the base automatic gets 38 on the highway. Good cabin quality, intuitive controls, comfortable seating and a striking design also fall into the Mazda's favor.

By David Thomas | July 23, 2014 | Comments (9)

2015 Volkswagen Passat: What's Changed

2015VWPassat1.8

Most significant changes: More power, better fuel economy for TDI models

Price change: TBD

On sale: TBD

Which you should buy, 2014 or 2015? 2014 gas, but 2015 diesel

Volkswagen's midsize family sedan receives only a few minor trim and package changes for 2015, with the most notable to the base model S and Wolfsburg Edition trims. An optional Technology Package is available for the two trims and includes a backup camera and a touch-screen stereo system with eight speakers (instead of the current six). Satellite radio also is part of the Technology Package on the S trim; it's already standard on the Wolfsburg.

Related: What Is the Most Affordable Midsize Sedan for 2014?

All TDI diesel models get a new 2.0-liter engine that comes with a 10-horsepower bump to 150 hp as well as increased fuel economy. The Passat TDI now gets an EPA-estimated 44 mpg highway for the manual transmission and 42 mpg highway for the automatic.

By Aaron Bragman | July 22, 2014 | Comments (11)

Small Trunks in Midsize Hybrid Sedans Limit Usefulness

AccordHybrid

Family-friendly hybrids are still more elusive than you'd think. My test of the 2014 Honda Accord Hybrid proved that hybrid midsize sedans can be a great option for small families that don't haul a lot of stuff in the car's trunk. Alternatively, they also merit careful consideration if those families carry around a lot of gear.

2014 Honda Accord Hybrid Review

In the Accord Hybrid, as in its competitors, the hybrid system's batteries take up some quality trunk space. But how does its cargo space compare to other Accord models? And what about its competitors?

By Sara Lacey | July 21, 2014 | Comments (3)

2015 Volvo S60 Review

2015VolvoS60

"While Volvo has built a reputation for safety, the 2015 S60 succeeds because it is a powerful, agile sedan," said Cars.com reviewer Mike Hanley. Check out Hanley's review for more.

2015 Volvo S60 Expert Review

Cars.com photo by Evan Sears

By Matt Schmitz | July 18, 2014 | Comments (4)

2015 Hyundai Sonata Earns IIHS' Top Safety Pick Plus Award

2015HyundaiSonataCrashTest

Hyundai's midsize sedan is back for 2015, redesigned and safer than ever. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety today announced that the new Sonata earned its most prestigious safety award, Top Safety Pick Plus. The Sonata earned the honor by overcoming the previous version's lackluster rating in the stringent small overlap frontal crash test, which replicates what happens when a vehicle's front quarter strikes a tree or utility pole.The 2015 Sonata — Hyundai's second model to earn the institute's top honor this year — earned an acceptable rating in the small overlap test, improving on its previous rating of marginal.

2015 Hyundai Genesis Earns IIHS' Top Safety Pick Plus Award

The Sonata's optional forward collision warning system also qualified it for the Safety Pick Plus rating; the Sonata's system earned a basic score. To qualify for Top Safety Pick Plus, a vehicle must earn good or acceptable in the small overlap test; basic, advanced or superior for front crash prevention; and the top score of good in four other crash tests assessing performance in moderate overlap front, side, roof strength and head restraint tests.

IIHS image

By Matt Schmitz | July 17, 2014 | Comments (0)

Tesla to Launch Compact, Low-Cost Sedan in 2017

Tesla

Tesla has confirmed a third model, dubbed the Model 3, will show up around 2017. Tesla CEO Elon Musk originally wanted to call it the Model E — which, together with the extant Model S sedan and forthcoming Model X SUV, would have landed Tesla enough S-E-X appeal for late-night comedians to have a field day. But Ford sued because it had rights to the Model E name, explains British car magazine Auto Express, which broke the story, so Tesla had to go with Model 3 — or Model III, depending on exact nomenclature. The all-electric Model 3 will have a smaller platform than the Model S and take on the BMW 3 Series. Musk told Auto Express it would be priced around $35,000, or half the cost of a Model S. Still, the Model 3 images that Auto Express posted "were mock-ups based on their own speculation," Tesla tweeted on Tuesday.

Read more from our friends at USA Today here.

Cars.com photo by Evan Sears

By Kelsey Mays | July 16, 2014 | Comments (6)

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