Many of you are about to flock to the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show that I just returned from covering during its preopening. Here's a good, short list of important cars to see. Bring your phone and earbuds and use these videos as a walk-around guide as you look at each car. I think these will concisely put each one into perspective for you. The videos are in walking order, starting in the South Hall.The BMW i3, the company's first full-fledged electric car and the launch of the new i Series that could reinvent the brand. Jaguar's F-Type Coupe … Read more
I go to five major auto shows every year, and Los Angeles remains my favorite. Its proximity to San Francisco means our CNET crew can take a road trip down, so I don't have to hassle with airport security. The weather is, at the very least, comfortable, and the Staples Center venue provides two big halls that easily hold the wares of the world's automakers.
This year we drove down in the 2014 Dodge Durango, which proved very comfortable and spacious for the extended freeway cruise and let us carry a bunch of our video team's gear. … Read more
LOS ANGELES -- In a launch as quiet as the electric motor that powers its wheels, Mercedes-Benz has been readying its B-class Electric Drive for sales in the summer of 2014. During the 2013 Los Angeles auto show, I joined a small group of journalists given the chance to ride along in one.
Instead of a fleet of slick vehicles prepped for the press, Mercedes-Benz only brought two examples of the B-class Electric Drive to the show. These were research vehicles that Mercedes-Benz engineers had driven for thousands of miles on public roads to collect performance data.
The B-class is … Read more
Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and boy do we have a lot of tech awesomeness to be thankful for this week. Hot on the heels of the PS4 release, Microsoft has just launched the Xbox One. It might have the higher price tag, but does it matter? We get our mitts on the shiny new gaming console and offer up some of our highs and lows. We also checked out the world's first (deeply) curved display smartphone, the Samsung Galaxy Round. Crazy, gimmicky, or brilliant? We'll let you decide for yourselves.
You know what else we're … Read more
LOS ANGELES -- Given the ever-increasing waistline of new Mini Cooper variants, such as the Countryman and Paceman over the years, I feared the update to the basic Mini Cooper hatchback would similarly increase, sacrificing all the fun for which the Mini had been known. But the generation released in 2001 was long overdue for a significant update, and Mini obliged at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show.
And thank the wiser heads at Mini HQ, the new model looks like it preserves what made the previous Mini Cooper so special.
Mini unveiled both the Mini Cooper and the Mini … Read more
LOS ANGELES -- We all scoffed at Porsche when it built the Cayenne, but that model has gone on to become the brand's volume sales leader. In 2012, the automaker sold nearly as many Cayennes as it did 911s, Boxsters, and Panameras combined. Now, at the 2013 LA Auto Show, the automaker is set to do it all over again, unveiling the fifth model in its current lineup: the so-called "baby Cayenne," now officially known as the 2015 Porsche Macan.
LOS ANGELES -- It's that time of year again, where the Green Car of the Year is announced at the LA Auto Show. This year, the honor goes to the the Honda Accord, chosen from a field of 5 finalists that included the Audi A6 TDI, BMW 328d, Mazda3, and Toyota Corolla.
The Accord was chosen for its because it offers a reasonably efficient conventional gasoline model, up to 50 mpg from its hybrid variant, and an impressive 115 mpg combined equivalent from its plug-in hybrid model. The Green Car Journal's panel, which is responsible for choosing the … Read more
Aside from making the name slightly longer, R-Spec designation signals that the 2014 Hyundai Veloster Turbo gains a few go-faster tweaks, but loses a few premium features, offering enthusiasts and tuners boosted performance over the standard model, without the boosted price.
In the "upgrades" column, the Veloster Turbo R-Spec's handling has been improved with higher spring rates, … Read more
LOS ANGELES -- At the 2013 Los Angeles auto show, I had the rare opportunity to drive a car that won't hit U.S. showrooms until 2015, the Audi A3 e-tron. There will be an A3 model here before that, but it will be a sedan and only comes with gasoline and diesel engines. Audi takes a different tack with the A3 e-tron, using its wagon body and fitting the model with a plug-in hybrid drivetrain.
In fact, the A3 e-tron will represent the first plug-in hybrid car from Audi.
LOS ANGELES -- Mansions, yachts, limousines: luxury often equates to large, but Audi has other things in mind with its new A3 model. The smallest car in its US lineup, the all-new 2015 A3 sedan gets features found on Audi's flagship sedan, the A8.
US buyers may be a little confused by the new A3, which has gone from a wagon body style to a sedan, and skipped a model year in the process. Audi intended to market a sedan here, a more popular body style, but development of the three- and five-door hatchbacks took precedence in other markets. … Read more