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2019 Volkswagen Arteon: Entering the U.S. in Late 2018

2019 Volkswagen Arteon: Entering the U.S. in Late 2018

The 2019 Volkswagen Arteon comes to America

2019 Volkswagen Arteon - Front - Manufacturer Picture - EuroDrift

2019 Volkswagen Arteon – Front – Manufacturer Picture – EuroDrift

Earlier this year, the stylish, four-door Arteon made its American debut at the 2018 Chicago Auto Show. Consumers got a chance to view the newest Volkswagen that will find its way into showrooms during fourth-quarter of 2018.

There is a bit of controversy over what to call the Arteon. Volkswagen insists that it is a sedan. At first glance, the 4-door car does indeed look like a sedan or maybe a sports coupe. However, the Arteon has a hinged opening above the back windshield. In America, we call that a hatchback.

2019 Volkswagen Arteon - Rear - Manufacturer Picture - EuroDrift

2019 Volkswagen Arteon – Rear – Manufacturer Picture – EuroDrift

Volkswagen insists that the car is not a hatchback.

So, Arteon is a sleek hatchback-sedan that looks like a sports coupe and it comes with three trim levels: SE, SEL, and SEL Premium.

Features and Specifications

2019 Volkswagen Arteon - Engine - Manufacturer Picture - EuroDrift

2019 Volkswagen Arteon – Engine – Manufacturer Picture – EuroDrift

The 2019 Volkswagen Arteon runs on a 2.0-liter turbo-four engine, producing 268 hp and 258 lb.-ft. of torque. Handling is accomplished with an eight-speed automatic transmission and buyers can choose between front or all-wheel drive.

The 2019 Arteon comes standard with heated front seats (heated backseats optional)  and LED headlamps.

2019 Volkswagen Arteon - Interior - Manufacturer Picture - EuroDrift

2019 Volkswagen Arteon – Interior – Manufacturer Picture – EuroDrift

Actually, the full list of standard features is pretty impressive:

  • Autonomous Emergency Braking
  • Blind Spot Monitoring
  • Forward Collision Assist
  • Proximity-Key Entry
  • 3-Zone Climate Control
  • 8.0-inch Touchscreen Control with Apple CarPlay and Android Support

Other options for the Arteon include Volkswagen’s full-LED gauge cluster, sunroof, heated rear seats, and for a truly luxurious ride – a massaging driver’s seat.

Pricing on the 2019 Arteon

Volkswagen Arteon 2018 review – is it better than an Audi? – carwow – YouTube

The official price points haven’t yet been published but should be released this summer. Volkswagen has said that they expect the starting price to be somewhere in the neighborhood of $34,000. If that is true, then it means that the base price of the Arteon will overlap the decked-out price of the Passat. Speculation is that a loaded Arteon SEL Premium will surpass the $40,000 mark.

2019 Volkswagen Arteon - Rear Corner - Manufacturer Picture - EuroDrift

2019 Volkswagen Arteon – Rear Corner – Manufacturer Picture – EuroDrift

 

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake: A Stylish Wagon

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake: A Stylish Wagon

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake - Side in Action - Manufacturer Picture - EuroDrift

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake – Side in Action – Manufacturer Picture – EuroDrift

Basically, the new Jaguar XF S Sportbrake is just a larger, wagon version of Jaguar’s XF sedan. However, unlike the sedan, the Sportbrake wagon only comes with one engine option: the 3.0-liter supercharged V6 with an eight-speed ZF automatic transmission and all-wheel drive.

Yet, why mess with a good thing. This engine is powerful enough to accelerate this 4000+ lb. vehicle at super-fast speeds.

It’s FAST!

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake - Engine - Manufacturer Picture - EuroDrift

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake – Engine – Manufacturer Picture – EuroDrift

Mama move over, this wagon is not for getting groceries or the kids to soccer games.

Jaguar claims that the XF S Sportbrake will do an impressive 0-60 mph in 5.3 seconds. The 380-hp engine has 332 lb.-ft. of torque and never flags at any rpm. When you hit the gas, it GOES! Top speed on the Sportbrake is 121 mph, which is great until you need to stop.

A 4000+ lb. object moving at speeds of 100 mph will NOT stop on a dime. Like older wagons, you still have a bit of yaw in the corners and, truth be told, it still looks like a wagon.

The 2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake – Not Built for Comfort

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake - Front Corner in Action - Manufacturer Picture - EuroDrift

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake – Front Corner in Action – Manufacturer Picture – EuroDrift

So, here is the problem. The Sportbrake is a $73,000 wagon that only seats five people and doesn’t have the cargo space to haul anything over 6 feet long. It’s also been noted that both the front and back seats are not that comfortable. Both are flat and firm, making long trips a bit tedious.

Jaguar has done what it does best, it’s made a fast car, in a category where fast is not all that common. The Sportbrake also has plenty of power to tow and it looks pretty darn good for a wagon. The lines are sleek and definitely make you think of a Jaguar.

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake - Front Grille & Headlight - Manufacturer Picture - EuroDrift

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake – Front Grille & Headlight – Manufacturer Picture – EuroDrift

What’s missing are the things that make people want to buy wagons in the first place: seating, cargo space, and comfort.

So, for wagon enthusiasts with money to burn, why not? It’s fun and fast and sure to turn a few heads. However, if you are just interested in a fast and powerful car, the XF sedan might be a better choice.

Jaguar XF Sportbrake (2018) Features, Interior, Design [YOUCAR] – YouTube

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake - Interior - Manufacturer Picture - EuroDrift

2018 Jaguar XF S Sportbrake – Interior – Manufacturer Picture – EuroDrift

The Italian Job: 2003 Mini Cooper S

The Italian Job: 2003 Mini Cooper S

Fun Facts About the Italian Job 2003 Mini Cooper S

There are lots of iconic movie cars, but very few “small” cars outside of Herbie the Love Bug and, of course, the Mini Cooper from the Italian Job.  In fact, both the original 1969 and the 2003 movie, act as a full-length commercial for the Mini Cooper.

The original picture features three Mk1 Austin Mini Cooper S’s, in red, white and blue and the 2003 movie showcases the 2003 Mini Cooper S, modified both on and off-screen.

1963 Austin Mini Cooper S Mk1 - Front - The Italian Job - Wikimedia Commons - EuroDrift

1963 Austin Mini Cooper S Mk1 – Front – The Italian Job – Wikimedia Commons – EuroDrift

On-Screen and Off-Screen Modifications

On screen, the Mini Coopers were to be used to “get back the gold” after a double-cross. The main characters devise a plan to update and modify three small cars (Mini Coopers). They want them to be FAST and with a beefier suspension to carry the heavy bars of gold they hope to recover.

Off-screen, it was actually necessary for the movie makers to make modifications to the three cars before shooting could take place. Two electric-powered Mini Coopers and a Mini Cooper S had to be built because gasoline-powered vehicles are prohibited in Los Angeles’ subway system. Without the modifications, that iconic chase scene through the tunnels could not have taken place.

Another Mini Cooper with two steering wheels was used for some of the shooting. This was so that a stunt driver could navigate while the actors did their thing for the camera. This one of a kind Mini now sits on display at the Mini factory in Cowley, Oxford.

Specs on a Non-Modified 2003 Mini Cooper S

The Italian Job (2003) – Trailer – Paramount – YouTube

How close to what you see on the screen is a real Mini Cooper S?

A non-modified 2003 Mini Cooper S has a 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine with a mechanical-drive supercharger and produces 163 horsepower.  Though it’s a bit slow off the line, the six-speed manual transmission means there’s plenty of power and good control. However, be prepared to do a lot of shifting. If it’s your daily driver, you may find that to be a bit of a nuisance.

All in all, people find the Mini-Cooper fun to drive around. However, most agree that the size and shifting make it a bit impractical for families or the daily commute.

 

 

Everyone Deserves a Second Chance… Including Volkswagen

Everyone Deserves a Second Chance… Including Volkswagen

VW Emissions Scandal & Why They Deserve a Second Chance

2018 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible - Front - PAS 2018 - EuroDrift

2018 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible – Front – PAS 2018 – EuroDrift

For the 642,000 people working for Volkswagen, the actions of a few have altered their lives irrevocably.

You are probably aware that from 2006 to 2015, VW based their US sales strategy on selling “clean diesel” vehicles such as the Passat and the Jetta. They claimed that these vehicles rivaled electric-hybrids like the Toyota Prius in both performance and emissions.

Sales records show that as many as 580,000 found their way into the garages of unwary consumers. All of these customers thought they were buying high-performance, EPA-friendly autos.

But they weren’t.

Instead, they were actually purchasing vehicles which spewed 4x the legal limit of noxious fumes allowed by the US Nox Regulations.

Who’s to Blame for VW Emissions Scandal?

2018 Volkswagen Tiguan - Front - PAS 2018 - EuroDrift

2018 Volkswagen Tiguan – Front – PAS 2018 – EuroDrift

So, how did this fraud continue for close to a decade? Who knew and who didn’t?

Actually, the emissions scandal was the work of only a handful of people.

About 40 people, worked together to cover up the results of the failed emissions testing. The fraud went all the way to the top and there is little doubt that the CEO, Winkerton, knew of the issue in 2016. Many feel that he knew about it before then and may have had a hand in its execution.

Once the story broke, vehicle owners began filing civil lawsuits and criminal investigations began. Several executives found themselves facing jail sentences and VW’s CEO was forced to resign. In addition, the company was hit with billions of dollars in fines and settlements.

2nd Chances for VW Workers

Volkswagen’s diesel scandal, explained – The Verge – YouTube

Unfortunately, the lasting implications for the 642,000 auto workers who had nothing to do with the VW Emissions Scandal are real. VW sales have still not returned to same levels they were before the diesel scandal. Some US auto dealers reported that they had days during the past two years when they didn’t see a single customer in their showrooms.

Yet, finally, this past quarter, VW sales have started to climb.

According to Autodata, it looks as if VW has gained 12% over previous year’s sales. This could mean that the public is willing to forgive and forget now that those who engineered the VW Emissions Scandal have had to pay the piper.

2018 Volkswagen Atlas - Front - PAS 2018 - EuroDrift

2018 Volkswagen Atlas – Front – PAS 2018 – EuroDrift

BMW Vehicle Subscription Service: Testing in Nashville

BMW Vehicle Subscription Service: Testing in Nashville

BMW Begins Offering Subscription Service in Nashville

2018 BMW M2 - Front - PAS 2018 - EuroDrift

2018 BMW M2 – Front – PAS 2018 – EuroDrift

Just this week, BMW began testing their new BMW vehicle subscription service in Nashville, Tennessee. Similar to the Cadillac and Volvo subscription services, drivers can request vehicles through a mobile app and if desired, can even drive a different car every day of the month.

Once you request your car from the BMW subscription service, a concierge from the local dealer delivers the car to you. It comes fully fueled and detailed and you can even have them preset the car to match your preferences.

Lease, Buy, or Use the BMW Vehicle Subscription Service?

2018 BMW M4 - Front - PAS 2018 - EuroDrift

2018 BMW M4 – Front – PAS 2018 – EuroDrift

Most people are familiar with the buying and leasing process. What they may not realize is how the BMW subscription service might better fit their needs.

A lease can allow you to drive a car for a lower monthly sum than it takes to finance a purchase. For many, it’s a way to drive a nicer car without having a hefty down payment. However, when leasing, you are tied to that one vehicle for the term of your lease and you still have to find auto insurance and maintain the car.

Subscription plans allow you to “own” or “rent” a car month-to-month. This is perfect for those who don’t want the hassle of owning or maintaining a car year around. The BMW subscription service also includes insurance, maintenance, and roadside assistance as part of the subscription fee.

How Much Does It Cost?

BMW’s New Subscription Service I Fortune – Fortune Magazine – YouTube

The cost of the BMW vehicle subscription service is similar to that of other car companies. For between $2,000 and $3,700, BMW lovers can pick between various models such as the BMW M2, the 5 Series, and the X5.

For hybrid enthusiasts, the 530e iPerformance and X5 xDrive40e iPerformance are also available.

And if speed is your thing, then you might want to tool around town in the M4 convertible, M5, M6 convertible, X5M, or X6M.

As of now, the BMW vehicle subscription service is still in the testing phase. Nashville should allow them to learn and grow the program to better meet the needs of their customers before launching it across the country.

2018 BMW X2 - Front - PAS 2018 - EuroDrift

2018 BMW X2 – Front – PAS 2018 – EuroDrift

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