While Nissan's Versa sedan came in for a ground-up redo for 2012, the 5-door Hatchback version carries over from the 2011 model year with two models, S and SL. Perhaps to soothe hatchback fans, Nissan ups the ante by adding four new option packages for the S model and then making what was the Premium package now standard equipment on the SL edition. With that upgrade come such extras as the Bluetooth Hands-free phone system, the "Intelligent" key and 16-in. alloy wheels. Opt for the S version and you get the 122-bhp 1.8-liter twincam four with a 6-speed manual or 4-speed automatic. SL models also have the 1.8 but are only fitted with the CVT transmission. Now the Vehicle Dynamic Control system is standard on both S and SL models.
Even though the traditional pony-car formula is based on a 2-door coupe with rear drive and a V-8 engine, Chevy has grasped the future idea that modern V-6 engines can be lighter and more powerful. So, the result is a 323-bhp 3.6-liter V-6 engine as the base Camaro's powerplant. That's huge power, and feels so, especially with the standard 6-speed manual. The V-8 ZL1 performance model is available with an unbelievably powerful 580-bhp version of the supercharged 6.2-liter V-8. This is the top-line, most powerful Camaro ever, with a 6-speed manual standard, and a 6-speed automatic that saves fuel optional. The SS model is between the standard Camaro and the wild ZL1. All 2012 models have the dark taillight lenses of the 2011 RS.
A slick pushbutton in the HHR pops open the rear doors of the 2-seat panel van version introduced in 2008, meaning you can load the rear cargo area from the sides or the back. Not a lot of front-drive cars are set up this way, but we keep finding tasks where it’s ideal: Dog crate access, test equipment storage, camping boxes, tools, bikes, the list is endless. The 5-passenger window-wagon HHRs now have a rear-vision camera available, and all of the HHRs come with a competent 5-speed manual standard (a 4-speed automatic is optional), which makes them a bit more fun and efficient. Cargo area is impressive for such a frugal and tidy package, and upright seating and a good view out of the windows makes it feel like you’re driving a tall wagon.
The BMW X6 Sports Activity Coupe combines coupe-like agility and style with the versatility of a SUV. The distinctive 4-door, 4-passenger X6 features two rear seats in a sculpted single-seat design and BMW's xDrive intelligent all-wheel drive system.
The BMW X6 is available in two trim levels: xDrive35i and xDrive50i. The xDrive35i is powered by a 300-hp 3.0-liter turbocharged inline six-cylinder engine, while the xDrive50i boasts a twin-turbo V8, generating 400 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque. Both engines feature direct fuel injection, and are mated to an eight-speed Sport automatic transmission with Steptronic manual shift mode and steering wheel paddles. Additionally, BMW's Dynamic Performance Control is standard on the X6, distributing drive force between the rear wheels and enhancing its sporty handling characteristics. Other standard equipment includes 19-inch aluminum wheels, a power moonroof, power liftgate, bi-xenon adaptive headlamps, automatic climate control, leather upholstery and HD radio; the xDrive50i is further outfitted with multi-contour seats and a voice-activated hard drive-based navigation system, including 12 gigabytes of dedicated media storage and DVD video capability (optional on the xDrive35i). Safety features on every X6 include anti-lock disc brakes, Dynamic Stability Control with traction control and rollover sensor, front and rear parking sensors and a tire pressure monitor, as well as front side-impact airbags and overhead curtain airbags for both rows.
The A7 is a captivating five-door Sportback, combining coupe-like styling with the classic luxury of a sedan, then enhancing it with the added versatility of a rear power liftgate. Audi's Drive Select and venerated quattro all-wheel drive system provide dynamic handling, while high-grade materials with excellent fit and finish create an intimate interior environment.
The A7 is offered in one comprehensive Premium Plus trim level. It is powered by either a 310-hp 3.0-liter supercharged V6 engine, or a new 240-hp 3.0-liter turbocharged V6 diesel (TDI) engine. Both engines feature direct fuel injection and start/stop technology, and are mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission with manual mode. Standard equipment includes a power sunroof, 19-inch aluminum wheels, Xenon plus headlights, LED daytime running lights, heated front seats, leather upholstery, three-zone climate control, Advanced Key passive entry/start, HD/satellite radio, Bluetooth wireless connectivity for phone and audio streaming, and an Audi Music Interface; as well, a MMI voice-activated navigation plus system features real-time traffic information and internal memory for digital media storage, while Audi Connect provides a mobile internet hotspot and smartphone integration. Safety features include electronic stability and traction control systems, 4-wheel anti-lock brakes with brake assist, front/rear parking sensors with rearview camera, and Audi pre sense forward collision mitigation, along with dual front, front side-impact, knee and overhead curtain airbags; rear side-impact airbags are optional. Other available technologies include Audi Side Assist blind spot monitoring, Audi Active Lane Assist, Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop & Go functionality, Head Up Display and Night Vision Assistant, including pedestrian detection.
The Audi A7 carries over with minor changes for 2014. It now features a 5-passenger seating configuration, while new standard equipment includes 19-inch aluminum wheels, HD radio, Advanced Key, voice-activated navigation and Audi Connect. Additionally, a new TDI model debuts.