Tag Archives: european cars

2000 BMW Z3 Review

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Contrary to what most people think, the Z3 was not the first Z to start off the Z series (Z3 and Z4). That title goes to the Z1.  During 1989-1991, BMW built the Z1. The Z1 featured many innovative touches such as doors that slide down in their sills and a removable plastic body. This car could be driven with all of the body panels completely removed. They were never sold in North America, and the Z1 was discontinued after just two years and with 8,000 models produced. After noticing the success of the Mazda Miata roadster, BMW decided it wanted a piece of the action. Introduced in 1996, the Z3 made its debut in the James Bond film, Golden Eye, which BMW used to promote the car. The BMW Z3 emphasized its mix of modern BMW mechanicals with retro styling cues from the BMW 507 (a classic BMW roadster). It gained new interior and exterior revisions in 2000.

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2012 Volkswagen Golf GTI teaser

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Review coming soon!

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2009 Dodge Charger SE and 2009 Lexus IS250 Comparison

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You can check out the individual reviews of both here: 2009 Lexus IS250 Review and 2009 Dodge Charger SE Review.

There is no doubt that these two cars are different in many ways. One is a compact luxury car, the other isn’t. The Lexus is a fully loaded version whereas the Dodge is a basic rental car spec. The Lexus IS250 is a direct competitor to the BMW 3 series (the 328i to be specific) and the Dodge Charger is a larger and more powerful alternative to the Dodge Avenger. Two different cars created for different clienteles. But what if you take away the price and luxury gap out of the equation? They are rear wheel drive and are powered by V6s. In my opinion, I am interested in finding out whether the more expensive Lexus is a better package than the Dodge under these circumstances. On the basis of styling and driving dynamics, which is the better car? Continue reading

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2008 Audi A4 2.0T Review

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What can I say about German engineering? When it comes to luxury cars, the German engineering is present in cars. You can feel it in the ride, the handling, and the overall feel of the controls. The Audi A4 is an example of such engineering. As Audi changed its nomenclature from just numbers (80, 100) to numbers and letters (A4, A6, A8), their cars adopted a different approach to beating BMW and Mercedes Benz in the luxury market. Audi, a division of Volkswagen, would use Volkswagen platforms to keep costs down, while focusing on driving performance and comfort. The Audi A4 succeeded the Audi 80 in 1996, as an attempt to better the likes of its rivals BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C-Class. Following up on the first generation A4’s success, the second generation A4 promises even better driving performance. Continue reading

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2014 Mercedes Benz SLK250 Review

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Fun fact: The original Mercedes SLK was the first production luxury convertible to feature a folding hardtop. This novel feature enabled the SLK to look like a coupe with the top up, and a roadster with the top down, while also providing extra comfort and security that other cloth top convertibles could not match.  It was a success, selling around 55,000 worldwide in its first year (expensive convertibles do not usually sell this well). However, the original SLK garnered a reputation as a chick car, as it did not provide the driving experience its looks suggested. The second generation SLK in 2005-2011 sacrificed the previous SLK’s smooth lines for a more racier design. Even though handling was improved considerably, its image as a chick car remained, and its handling was still far off the pace of a Porsche Boxster. The latest SLK retains the retractable hardtop while promising better performance than the last two SLKs. Continue reading

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2011 BMW 740Li Review

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Debuting in 1977, the 7 series was higher in status and price compared to its 3 and 5 stablemates. It promised a better driving experience with more power and luxury. The first two generations (E23 and E32) did not take off as well as expected as it looked too similar to the 5 series. The 1994-2001 E38 generation fared slightly better due to being featured in several hit movies such as Tomorrow Never Dies with James Bond, and The Transporter. However, it still looked like an oversized 5 series. It wasn’t until 2002 that the 7 series’ popularity soared. The redesigned 7 series (E65) was the best selling 7 series of all time. At the time, Chris Bangle was BMW’s designer, and he was responsible for the controversial styling on the 3, 5, and of course, the 7. Controversy hit the 7 series due to its radical styling and complicated controls. But it finally looked different than other BMWs. Redesigned in 2009, this 7 series builds on its fundamental traits of the older 7, while dialing back on the styling. Continue reading

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