Mercedes revamps the C-Class sedan for 2012 and adds an attractive new coupe to the mix. Both begin with the C250 Sport featuring a new 201-bhp 1.8-liter direct-injection 4-cylinder turbo. The C350 nets a 302-bhp 3.5-liter V-6. Targeting enthusiasts, the top C63 AMG has a 451-bhp 6.2-liter V-8. Sedans also offer a C300 4Matic with a 228-bhp 3.0-liter V-6. Standard 7-speed automatics include a Speedshift multiclutch version for the C63. Redesigned interiors gain new audio with a 5.8-in. color display, Bluetooth and USB port. Coupes receive standard paddle shifters, sport bucket seats and split-folding rear seats. Attention Assist, Adaptive Brake with Hold function, Lane Keeping Assist and Blind Sport Assist are among C-Class safety features.
The big news at Honda for 2013 is the all-new, ninth-generation Accord. It’s a bit smaller on the outside for improved handling, and edgier styling sets the tone for the new sedan, coupe and plug-in hybrid. New engines include a direct-injected 2.4-liter 4-cylinder with a choice of 6-speed manual or continuously variable transmissions. The new 3.5-liter V-6 offers a 6-speed automatic. A 2.0-liter Atkinson cycle 4-cylinder teams with a 120-kW motor and lithium-ion batteries for the hybrid. Honda claims an electric range of 10–15 miles in city driving at speeds up to 62 mph with battery recharging taking less than four hours via a 120-volt outlet. New features include Lane Watch blind-spot display plus a standard rearview camera.
R&T Overview:The Sierra HD has been hitting the weight room over the summer, and boasts a pumped-up towing capacity for its efforts. The 3500HD can now drag 23,000 lb. behind it, and the 3500HD regular cab gasoline dually has an increased payload capacity of 7215 lb. There’s also a high-idle switch available this year for the 2500HD. But it’s not all sweat and blood for 2012. There’s a new navigation radio for the Denali and SLT; cruise control is now standard on the Work Truck; and heated and cooled leather seats (and a rearview camera) come standard on the Denali. The Sierra HD was heavily revised last year, so much carries over—6.0-liter gas V-8 or 6.6-liter turbodiesel, 6-speed automatic, tough independent front suspension and a solid warranty.
The Range Rover Sport is slightly smaller and lighter than the regular Range Rover but, powered by the choice of the same two engines, it is much more spritely, if that’s the right word for any SUV. There’s no mistaking it for anything other than a Range Rover, but a lower roofline and more swept back windshield give it a sportier look. Although it costs around $20K less than its bigger brother, it still has a luxurious interior. There are only some minor interior trim upgrades for 2012. They include upgraded infotainment components with a touchscreen interface and an updated instrument cluster. The navigation system has also been improved, and the power tailgate now has user-selectable opening height.
The GMC Terrain is a boldly styled five-passenger crossover SUV engineered with excellent fuel economy and passenger comfort in mind, offering best in class second row leg room. A long wheelbase and wide tracks contribute to car-like ride and handling traits while reducing body roll for a safe, stable driving experience.
The Terrain is offered in SLE, SLT and Denali trim levels as well as in front-wheel or all-wheel drive. It is powered by either a 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine with 182-hp, or a 3.6-liter V6 engine with 301-hp. Both all-aluminum engines include direct injection and are mated to a six-speed automatic transmission that helps to maximize efficiency. Standard safety features include four-wheel anti-lock brakes, stability and traction control systems, six airbags, OnStar, tire pressure monitoring and a security system. Available features include forward collision alert, lane departure warning, rear park assist, power liftgate, remote vehicle start, InteliLink, rear entertainment system and seven-inch touch screen navigation system.
For 2014, the Terrain carries over with minimal changes that include new 17 and 18-inch wheels.