Of Course We Want A Kia Optima Station Wagon

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If ever there were a misunderstood style of motoring vehicle, it'd be the wagon. Sorry, minivans, some may look down upon you, but at least you still exist. The traditional wagon is all but gone for today's car shoppers with a few exceptions of some luxury models, Subaru's Outback and the new Volkswagen Golf SportWagen.

Related: 2015 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen Starts at $22,215

That's why we're excited to see Kia reveal some early photos of the Sportspace concept ahead of March's Geneva International Motor Show. It hints at the next production version of the popular Optima sedan, which will also debut at the European show.

By David Thomas | February 17, 2015 | Comments (10)

2016 Hyundai Veloster Rally Edition Photo Gallery (27 Photos)

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Hyundai updated its sporty hatchback for 2016 with a lightly revised face; the bigger news for the Veloster is the addition of the Rally Edition to the lineup.

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The new Rally Edition trim gets imitation carbon-fiber body accents, specific badges and Matte Blue paint; it rides on 18-inch aluminum-alloy wheels with performance all-season tires. Check out the gallery for more; Cars.com photos by Evan Sears.

By Jennifer Geiger | February 17, 2015 | Comments (0)

2016 Kia Rio Video

Kia gave its subcompact car a visual update for 2016. Outside, sedan and hatchback versions of the Rio get a more polished face, says Cars.com reviewer Kelsey Mays. Inside, the changes are also minor and include a revised control panel.

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Check out the video for more.

Watch on YouTube

By Jennifer Geiger | February 17, 2015 | Comments (0)

How Different is the 2016 Hyundai Elantra GT?

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The restyled Hyundai Elantra GT is a good example of how a relatively small styling change can have a big impact on a car's appearance. The 2016 hatchback's new grille uses the same space as the one that was there before, but the new design is bolder yet works with the car's lines. This is still the sleek, sporty-looking hatchback you know.

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The cabin layout carries over relatively unchanged, but the Elantra GT's classed-up materials and finishes still impress for 2016. The newly available multimedia system has crisp graphics that look sharp.

By Mike Hanley | February 13, 2015 | Comments (2)

Small Changes Add Up With the 2016 Kia Rio (31 Photos)

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The redesigned 2016 Kia Rio quietly debuted at the 2015 Chicago Auto Show with a few interior and exterior changes and just a passing mention in Kia's press conference. While subtle, new front and rear styling provide the subcompact Rio with a more dominant presence that's especially so in the Rio 5-Door hatchback, though the Rio sedan also receives a similar new look.

More 2015 Chicago Auto Show News 

Kia played with the design of the front and rear bodywork to give the Rio visual width through the use of a more horizontally styled front lower bumper and a new grille more in line with the rest of the Kia lineup. Sure, it sounds like a stretch that those minor changes could make any kind of an improvement, but looking at all the changes on the auto show floor the results are indeed apparent and substantial.

By Joe Bruzek | February 13, 2015 | Comments (0)

2016 Hyundai Elantra GT: First Look

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Competes with: Mazda3, Volkswagen Golf, Ford Focus

Looks like: Hyundai's gaping grille is spreading

Drivetrain: 173-hp, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine; six-speed manual or automatic transmission; front-wheel drive

Hits dealerships: March 2015

Starting price: $19,625, including an $825 destination charge

The 2016 Hyundai Elantra GT hatchback debuted today at the 2015 Chicago Auto show with revised styling and new available technology and convenience features. It hits dealerships in March with the same starting price as its predecessor: $19,625, including destination.

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By Mike Hanley | February 13, 2015 | Comments (0)

2016 Hyundai Veloster: First Look

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Competes with: Mini Hardtop, Subaru WRX, Volkswagen GTI

Looks like: Minor exterior tweaks make it hard to differentiate the 2016 model from the 2015.

Drivetrain: 1.6-liter direct-injection four-cylinder engine paired with six-speed manual (138 hp) or six-speed dual-clutch automated manual transmissions (132 hp); 201-hp, turbocharged 1.6-liter four-cylinder, six-speed manual or seven-speed dual-clutch automated manual transmission; front-wheel drive

Hits dealerships: May 2015

All versions of Hyundai's sporty hatchback get minor updates for 2016, and a new Rally Edition also joins the lineup this year. The Rally Edition was unveiled at the 2015 Chicago Auto Show.

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The 2016 Veloster wears a revised hood, new wheels and a tweaked grille; newly available on Turbo models is a performance-oriented dual-clutch seven-speed automated manual transmission.

By Jennifer Geiger | February 13, 2015 | Comments (2)

2015 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen Starts at $22,215

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The new Golf SportWagen replaces the Jetta SportWagen in Volkswagen's lineup when it goes on sale in April with a $22,215 starting price, including an $820 destination charge. That's $400 more than the base price of a 2014 Jetta SportWagen, but the Golf SportWagen has more standard features and gets better gas mileage, according to VW. The $25,415 base price for the TDI diesel version of the Golf SportWagen is nearly $2,000 less than the Jetta SportWagen TDI.

More 2015 Chicago Auto Show Coverage

Both gas and diesel versions of the Golf SportWagen are offered in S, SE and SEL models with increasing levels of features. The $22,215 base price gets you a Golf SportWagen S with a turbocharged four-cylinder gas engine and a manual transmission that's rated at 36 mpg highway. Standard features include 15-inch alloy wheels, Bluetooth connectivity, a touch-screen stereo with iPod integration, simulated leather upholstery and air conditioning. An automatic transmission costs an additional $1,100. When equipped with a diesel engine, the S trim level also has keyless access with push-button start, a backup camera and 16-inch alloy wheels instead of 15-inch ones.

By Mike Hanley | February 12, 2015 | Comments (1)

2016 Kia Rio: First Look

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Competes with: Ford Fiesta, Hyundai Accent, Chevrolet Sonic, Toyota Yaris

Looks like: Rio gets a dose of style with a restyled, more dramatic looking face

Drivetrain: 138-hp, 1.6-liter four-cylinder; six-speed manual and six-speed automatic

Hits dealerships: Early this year

More 2015 Chicago Auto Show News

Kia's on a styling tear lately, with eye-catching updates to its Sedona minivan and Sorento three-row crossover. Now it's the Rio's turn. The 2016 subcompact sedan and hatchback debuted this morning at the 2015 Chicago Auto Show with a fresh new face and lightly revised interior.

By Jennifer Geiger | February 12, 2015 | Comments (1)

2015 Honda Fit Earns NHTSA 5-Star Safety Rating

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For 2015, the redesigned Honda Fit has something to brag about: improved safety ratings. The subcompact hatchback received a five-star overall safety rating out of five from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Related: 2015 Honda Fit Photo Gallery

It also earned five stars in NHTSA's front and side-impact crash tests and four stars in the rollover test. That's an improvement over the 2013 Fit's NHTSA crash tests where it received four stars out of five across all the tests.

It's no surprise that the 2015 Fit earned better crash-test scores than the previous generation; the automaker made structural modifications designed to enhance its safety scores. Honda revised the 2015 Fit's bumpers with upgraded steel bars under the plastic covers after production started.

By Jennifer Newman | February 2, 2015 | Comments (1)

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