The FJ Cruiser has fun written all over it. Retro styling evokes Toyota's legendary FJ40 from the halcyon days of the 1960s. This thoroughly modern edition is built atop a shortened 4Runner frame employing a 4.0-liter V-6 and 5-speed automatic transmission with 4x2 or part-time 4x4. Selecting the 6-speed manual gearbox nets full-time awd with a locking center differential. The FJ's clamshell side doors aid rear seat access. A Trail Teams Special Edition, now offered in Radiant Red, features Bilstein shocks, Active Traction Control, 10-speaker JBL sound, floating ball multi-information display and unique cabin trim. Convenience, Upgrade, Off-Road and TRD packages along with individual options enable buyers to build the FJ of their dreams.
Toyota's curvaceous crossover now comes in a choice of three trim levels. The LE replaces the former base model while gaining standard heated mirrors and a windshield wiper de-icer. Moving up to the midrange XLE adds leather trim, Smart Key with push-button start, a backup camera and power tailgate. Carryover 2.7-liter 4-cylinder and 3.5-liter V-6 engines team with front- or all-wheel drive. The flagship Limited V-6 has standard navigation, panoramic sunroof, JBL Synthesis sound with satellite radio, USB/iPod port and Bluetooth streaming audio. Option packages enable these features to be added to the XLE. Designed at Toyota's Calty Southern California studios, the Venza continues to deliver a smooth, carlike ride with SUV-style cargo capacity.
The Ford Fiesta is a sub-compact, front-wheel drive, five-passenger car. Available in four and five-door bodystyles, the current benchmarks for the sub-compact segment are being tested by the Fiestas styling, comfort and luxury features, technology, and overall practicality.
The Fiesta is offered in three trims, S, SE, and a Titanium model. For 2014 there is the addition of the new ST trim to the hatchback lineup. Power comes from a 120-hp 1.6-liter four-cylinder engine, mated to a five-speed manual transmission. An advanced six-speed PowerShift automatic transmission is optional. The ST gets a turbocharged, direct-injected version of the 1.6-liter that offers nearly 200-hp, mated to a six-speed manual transmission. Standard features on all models include air-conditioning, capless fuel filler system, power body-colored mirrors, tilt/telescoping steering wheel, aux audio input jack, electronic power-assisted steering and hill launch assist. Higher trim levels include cruise control, keyless entry, Ford's MyKey system, HD and satellite radio, alloy wheels, power windows, rearview camera with reverse park sensing, SYNC hands-free communications and entertainment system and SYNC with MyFord Touch. Standard safety features include AdvanceTrac electronic stability control, seven airbags including a driver knee airbag, tire pressure monitoring system, engine immobilizer and four-wheel anti-lock brakes.
For 2014, the Fiesta is a refresh with new interior and exterior styling, feature changes across the entire lineup and the addition of the ST performance hot hatch.
The handsome Golf, now in its sixth generation, is the most successful VW nameplate ever, with global sales topping 27 million. It’s easy to see why. The Golf is available as a practical 3-door or 5-door hatchback, fitted with engines that run from the economical to the powerful. The base engine is the 2.5-liter 5-cylinder, which is not especially smooth but has the torque that buyers in the U.S. appreciate. Much better are the turbocharged 200-bhp 2.0-liter 4-cylinder found in the sporty GTI, and the 2.0-liter turbodiesel in the Golf TDI, which gets fantastic highway fuel economy of 42 mpg. Who needs a hybrid? For 2012, the option packages have been simplified, with the TDI Tech Package now having LED running lights, keyless entry and pushbutton start.
The Audi S7 is the sport-refined version of the luxurious A7 Sportback, boasting more power, exclusive design details and a level of technological sophistication few cars achieve.
The quattro all-wheel drive S7 is equipped with a 420-hp 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 TFSI engine with direct fuel injection and Audi's new cylinder-on-demand technology that deactivates four cylinders when under partial load. This powerful engine is paired with a seven-speed S-tronic automatic transmission with manual mode and steering wheel paddle shifters. Standard equipment on the S7 includes Audi Drive Select, 19-inch aluminum wheels, Xenon plus adaptive headlights, LED daytime running lights, leather upholstery, heated front seats, dual-zone climate control, Advanced Key passive entry/start, HD/satellite radio, Bluetooth wireless connectivity, and an Audi Music Interface with iPod integration; as well, a MMI voice-activated navigation plus system features extended functionality, including real-time traffic information and internal memory for digital media storage, while Audi Connect provides a mobile internet hotspot and smartphone integration. Additional standard equipment exclusive to the S7 includes a sport-tuned suspension, performance tires, alu-optic exterior mirrors, sport seats and a sport steering wheel. Standard safety features include electronic stability and traction control systems, 4-wheel anti-lock brakes with brake assist, rear camera parking assist, Audi Side Assist blind spot monitoring, Audi pre sense rear collision warning system and front, front side-impact and overhead curtain airbags; rear side-impact airbags are optional. Additional advanced safety technologies offered include Night Vision Assistant with Pedestrian Detection, Audi Active Lane Assist and Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop & Go functionality.
All-new last year, the Audi S7 carries over with minimal changes for 2014. Power-folding exterior mirrors are now standard, along with the Audi Side Assist blind spot monitor and Audi pre sense rear collision warning system. Additionally, a new Black Optic Package offers unique 19-inch aluminum wheels, along with a high-gloss black grille and body-colored exterior mirrors.