"Rowdy, raucous and oozing testosterone"— that was the Dodge Challenger of yesteryear, yet the modern interpretation of this iconic muscle car exhibits the same manners relative to its 21st century competitors as the 1970s Challenger did with its contemporaries. The Challenger is a straight-up blue-collar street brawler. If you're not shy, skip the V-6-powered SXT and new Rallye Redline (an SXT in sportier trim) and head right for the R/Ts (there are three versions this year) with their mighty 5.7-liter Hemi. Need more grit? The Challenger SRT8 392, cradling a 6.4-liter Hemi, is a 470-bhp, 12-second ET beast with a price-per-horsepower ratio that's tough to beat. Nothing new on the sheet this year except four exterior colors and the Rallye Redline.
Like its Dodge Charger big brother, the Challenger was given a midcycle refresh for 2011. Out went the old 250-bhp 3.5-liter V-6, and in came the new 305- bhp 3.6-liter. New chassis architecture and suspension tuning refined the ride and handling. Dodge also released the first run of 392 Hemi SRT8 Challengers, which deliver 470 bhp as well as the fuelsaver mode that shuts the V-8 down to four cylinders at loafing speeds. For 2012, Dodge continues the SRT8's refinement with a new 2-mode active damping suspension with "auto" and "sport" modes. The SRT8 also gets an exclusive leatherwrapped heated steering wheel. Those looking for middle ground should seek out the R/T, with 5.7-liter V-8 and either 5-speed automatic or 6-speed manual.
The Jeep Grand Cherokee retains Jeep's legendary off-road prowess while providing many luxurious and technical amenities.
The Grand Cherokee is available in two-wheel and four-wheel drive configuration with five trims levels: Laredo, Limited, Overland, Summit, and SRT8 (four-wheel drive only). All trims (except the SRT8) are powered by a 290-hp 3.6-liter V6. The V6 can be upgraded to a 360-hp 5.7-liter V8, or even a new 240-hp 3.0-liter turbo diesel V6. The SRT8 trim features an exclusive 470-hp 6.4-liter V8 Hemi engine. All trims and engine combinations are paired with an eight-speed automatic transmission, with steering wheel mounted paddle shifters. Both V8 engines feature a Multi-Displacement System (MDS), which seamlessly deactivates four of the eight cylinders depending on engine operating conditions. Adaptive cruise control, dual-pane panoramic sunroof, heated and ventilated leather seats, heated steering wheel, power liftgate, rear seat DVD entertainment system, rear parking camera, a multimedia infotainment system with hard drive navigation system, and UConnect wireless connectivity are available. The optional (standard on the 4x4 Overland and Summit) QuadraLift air suspension features full time four corner load leveling and improved off-road performance by increasing ground clearance. Standard safety features include seven airbags, electronic stability control, active font head restraints, brake assist, and tire pressure monitoring.
For 2014, the Jeep Grand Cherokee's interior and exterior receives a significant redesign. The 3.0-liter turbo diesel engine and eight-speed automatic transmission are new additions. Also, more features and advanced technology have been added as well.
The Hyundai Elantra is a compact car with handsome styling and nice lines. It has excellent interior space and standard safety equipment.
The Elantra is available in Sedan and Coupe body styles. Both body styles have seating for five and class-topping cargo capacity. One engine is offered; a 148-hp, 1.8-liter four-cylinder. A six-speed manual transmission or a six-speed automatic with SHIFTRONIC are available. Standard safety features include four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes, electronic stability control with traction control and six airbags. Available features include a power sunroof, turn signal equipped exterior mirrors, 17-inch aluminum wheels, heated front and rear seats, leather seating surfaces, satellite radio, navigation, Bluetooth and more.
A Coupe variant has been added to the Elantra line-up for 2013. The sedan GLS trim now sports 16-inch wheels and tires, cruise control, air-conditioning and a telescoping steering wheel. The sedan Limited trim gains a power driver seat with lumbar.
The BMW M6 is, essentially, in a class by itself. What other manufacturer makes a car that is, all at once, a rip-snorting, 500-horsepower, V-10-powered coupe/convertible with other-worldly handling, yet demonstrates a gentlemanly degree of civility and sophistication that only the most refined luxury grand touring machines in the market today can offer? It’s the automotive equivalent of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. Like its overachieving sedan relative—the BMW M5—the M6 was the benefactor of some light upgrades to its interior and exterior last year, so the vehicle is essentially unchanged from 2008. But when viewed from every angle (with the notable exception, for some, of the rear) this is one sensationally styled machine that requires little in the way of enhancements for 2009.