R&T Overview:When you build one of today's most potent performance cars, how do you make it better? Easy. Up the horsepower, which is what Nissan has done with the GT-R. By increasing turbocharger boost pressure, modifying valve timing and the fuel-air ratio, then cutting exhaust backpressure, the 3.8-liter V-6 ups horsepower from 485 to 530 and torque from 434 lb.-ft. to 448...laid down via the ATTESA E-TS all-wheel-drive system. To go with the added power comes revised exterior styling, which cuts the coefficient of drag to 0.26 and adds 10 percent more downforce. There are two GT-R models, Premium and, new for 2012, the Black Edition. The latter has a unique seat trim, interior colors and 6-spoke wheels. Two exterior colors are added: Deep Blue Pearl and Jet Black.
Nissan's Quest is so new that it enters 2012 with no changes. There is already plenty to work with if you're in the minivan market. The Nissan has a bold "face" and is boxy, which is appropriate to minivans. Like any good people-hauler, the interior is quite flexible, making it a place to haul the family or cargo. The easy fold-flat second- and third-row seats see to that, and the third row folds forward so there's no need to stow it. The standard and optional equipment list is extensive, some obvious, such as the one-touch power sliding doors. Others are just simply great ideas, like the Advanced Climate Control system that reduces allergens and bad smells. Or the fill alert that beeps the horn when you've inflated the tires properly.
R&T Overview:The Malibu is similar in size to the slightly larger Impala, but just because the two cars share the bowtie logo on their grilles doesn't mean they drive alike. The Malibu feels light on its feet, which is great for handling response, and a real trick considering the Malibu could stand to skip a few lunches. With this confident foundation, the standard stability control, traction control and 6-speed transmission programming make both the high-tech 2.4-liter four version and the roaring 3.6-liter V-6 model into “point-and-shoot” sedans. Although there is a manual-shift feature—a switch on the shift knob—the driveline works much smoother without using it. The Malibu's fastback styling intrudes slightly on rear head space, but comfort in front is top-notch.
The Chevrolet Corvette is the best high-performance value in America. The Corvette delivers supercar performance for the price of a midsize luxury sedan. For 2014 the Corvette is all-new, with the most powerful standard engine ever offered.
Now called the Corvette Stingray, the new for 2014 seventh-generation Corvette is a lighter and stiffer two-seat sports car available initially as a targa-roof coupe and later as a convertible. The coupe and convertible include a new 450-hp LT1 6.2-liter direct-injection V8 engine with Active Fuel Management and variable valve timing. It is matched with an all-new seven-speed manual transmission with automatic rev matching. A six-speed automatic with steering wheel paddle shifters is available. Both transmissions include launch control. An optional dual-mode exhaust adds 6-horsepower. Standard equipment includes high-intensity xenon headlamps, LED taillamps, a configurable electronic dash, an advanced infotainment system with Chevrolet MyLink and Bose audio, and an updated fully-wrapped interior with leather seat trim. The Z51 package adds performance to the coupe and convertible with a sportier suspension, wider wheels and tires, differential and transmission coolers, high performance brakes, and an electronically controlled limited-slip differential.
For 2014, the seventh-generation Chevrolet Corvette Stingray is completely redesigned and all-new.
The Sierra 1500 carries on for 2012 in familiar fashion, although buyers will find more standard equipment and additional comforts. Power door locks are standard on all models, and even the Work Truck model gets standard cruise control. The Sierra Denali now comes standard with heated and cooled seats and the rearview camera system. Powertrain choices abound—a V-6, four V-8 variants, or a hybrid powertrain that delivers 20 mpg city. The smaller engines get a 4-speed automatic; the larger V-8s come with a 6-speed automatic. There are three cab options—regular, extended and crew. Ample trailering and off-road options can be had, but if entertainment options are your priority, a new navigation radio with satellite, DVD, MP3 and USB is available.