Like most of its corporate stablemates, the Town & Country was sent in 2011 to refinement school, and returned with a re-engineered suspension, richer interior and new 3.6-liter 283-bhp V-6 with 6-speed automatic. For 2012, Chrysler burnishes the Town & Country's luxury credentials by making leather seating and rear-seat DVD standard equipment on all models. Also new is Sapphire Blue interior lighting. Returning are the T&C's many virtues: one-touch fold-down Stow 'n' Go seating, standard power sliding doors, power liftgate, Uconnect Web, side-curtain airbags for all three rows and overhead ambient lighting. The SafetyTec package includes the latest features such as blind-spot monitoring, rear crosspath detection and rain-sensitive wipers.
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.
Last year, the MKZ gained the Hybrid model with a 4-cylinder engine and electric motor combination good for a total of 191 hp and an impressive 41 city/36 highway mileage ratings or about 700 miles per tank. Boasting one of the best hybrid powertrains available, the MKZ Hybrid can touch 47 mph on electric power alone, and is a winner in urban driving. Sales of the MKZ Hybrid are running above expectations, and with Lincoln holding the price of the base Hybrid at the same $34,645 as the standard gasoline V-6 model, the gas/electric is a compelling choice. For open-road duty, the 263 bhp V-6 shows the good MKZ chassis to advantage. Luxury features are abundant; new for 2012 is AppLink for voice control of smartphones.
When the Range Rover was introduced over four decades ago, it revolutionized the market by introducing an upscale SUV that was in its element on city streets or muddy dirt tracks. It’s remained the epitome of a classy SUV ever since. Could the Range Rover Evoque do the same for small crossover SUVs? This luxury SUV is powered by a 240-bhp turbo-4 engine, yet it’s so much lighter than a giant Range Rover it delivers similar performance and far better fuel economy. It has a roomy interior and can tackle off-road challenges with the same aplomb thanks to use of the same off-road assist technologies. The 5-door Evoque might be more practical, but it goes up against some tough competitors. The 3-door Evoque, on the other hand, really has no competition yet.
The BMW 640i is offered in both coupe and convertible versions; both showcase performance paired seamlessly with elegant styling. All of this exclusivity is offered in one very dynamic vehicle.
The rear-wheel drive 640i is powered by a 315-hp 3.0-liter turbocharged inline 6-cylinder engine with direct fuel injection, mated to an eight-speed Sport automatic transmission with manual mode and shift paddles. The 640i is equipped with a sport-tuned suspension, Dynamic Driving Control, 18-inch aluminum wheels, adaptive bi-xenon headlights and Comfort Access keyless entry/start. Inside its lush cabin, the 640i provides seating for four, with high-quality leather upholstery, dual-zone automatic climate control and genuine wood trim. A voice-activated hard drive-based navigation system, including 12 gigabytes of dedicated media storage, HD radio and Bluetooth wireless connectivity are also standard. Safety features include anti-lock brakes, electronic stability and traction control, front and rear parking sensors with rearview camera, active anti-whiplash front head restraints and up to eight airbags. A Driver Assistance Package is available, providing more advanced systems such as lane-departure warning, blind spot detection, head-up display and an automated parking assistant. The 640i can also be outfitted with active cruise control and night vision, while other options include full LED lights and Integral Active Steering.
The BMW 640i now comes with more standard equipment for 2013. The list includes ECO PRO automatic start/stop function for improved efficiency, heated front seats, and satellite radio