GETTING TO KNOW THE NEW KID ON THE BLOCK

Stay: Hotel Hugo SoHo

Peering over the Hudson River from between two iconically New York red brick buildings, the brand new Hotel Hugo SoHo features a mix of modern urban escape and industrial warmth. This new kid on the block is an excellent place to call home for a brief stay in New York City.

Brains, meet brawn

BMW i8

As a concept-turned production vehicle with minimal changes and with no compromise in materials or style, the 2015 BMW i8 might be the most significant automobile of the year.

Your checklist for a beefy LA lunch

Hunting LA’s Best Burgers

From the Archives: The city of Los Angeles is known for Hollywood stars, sprawling traffic...and gourmet burgers. Yes, that sandwich concoction that first appeared in the late 1800s has become a staple in the City of Angels. There are the obvious picks like Umami, Father's Office, Apple Pan and of course In-N-Out; but a quick Yelp search for "burger" reveals almost 6,000 places to sit and enjoy ground meat on a bun. We spent a week seeking some of the lesser known but equally (arguably more) loved options.

Polishing the star

The Past Rumbles to Life at the Mercedes-Benz Classics Center

From the Archives: Vintage has gained traction in recent years, arguably as a reaction to our digital, disposable age. This rediscovered appreciation for beautiful, meaningful objects from our past is exactly why the Mercedes-Benz Classics Center in Irvine, CA exists...that, and to bring back to life those cars which cause us to lust from the deepest parts of our soft, chewy automotive centers.

Composed insanity

Taming 640 Horses in the McLaren 650S

It's an elegantly powerful ultra-supercar. It's capable of crushing more expensive, higher-profile autos on tracks and streets alike. And it's surprisingly rare. So instead of waiting around, GP went to the famous Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca to try out the 2015 McLaren 650S.

Going Where No RV Has Gone Before

Behind the Wheel: Sportsmobile 4WD

From the Archvies: When Charles Borskey started Sportsmobile in 1961, he had no idea the brand would rise to its current reputation as the ultimate vehicle for adventure camping -- or for simply making drivers look badass. Specializing in converting full-size vans into custom recreational vehicles, Sportsmobile turns your base people hauler into a rugged, rock-lovin' beast. GP recently visited Sportsmobile West's Fresno, CA location to see the factory and take a van on the road; the snow and ice created the perfect playground for these hulking yet nimble beasts.

The Nürburgring for Off-Road

Torture Testing Tires on 400 Miles of Baja

The Baja 1000 is one of the most grueling races in all of motorsports. Running nearly the entire length of Mexico's Baja California peninsula, drivers haul ass for 24 hours on motorcycles, production vehicles, trucks and buggies across some of the most varied terrain in the world. BFGoodrich's original K0 tire was "born in Baja" -- so it seemed like the perfect place to test their new version, the K02 All-Terrain tire.

Gear for an Open-Wheel Beating

Kit: Taking on Baja

Packing perfectly for the Baja Peninsula in Mexico means being prepared for everything -- because anything can, and will, happen.

Keep Your Backseat Driver Safe

Buying Guide: Car Seats

You baby has arrived. Such a glorious day -- but suddenly having a days-old human in your hands makes the world much bigger and scarier than when you checked into the hospital, and now you have to get them home. You can breathe a little easier with your baby strapped into one of these great car seats.

Racing's Up-and-Comer Series Appeals to both fans and drivers

Red Bull Global Rallycross: The Best Racing You’ve Never Seen

Though you've probably never heard about it, Red Bull Global Rallycross is arguably motorsports' best kept secret, and its most promising up-and-comer. With its short, simple races, colorful drivers, insanely powerful cars, and racetracks made of dirt, asphalt and even water, it's easy to see why.

Riding Rough Around The Edges

Tossing Dirt: The TORC Off-Road Championship

About two hours north of Green Bay, Wisconsin past idyllic countryside, dairy farms and wide open roads sits the small town of Crandon, where the peaceful silence of nature is replaced by the roar of 900 horsepower engines competing in The Off-Road Racing Championship (TORC) battling for victory while jumping, drifting and wrecking at the world famous Big House. We had an all-access pass to Jarit and Jessie Johnson from team Husqvarna as they continued their race for the championship.

One Less Car In Los Angeles

From the Archives: Navigating LA, which is known for its vastness and interlocking freeways, without a car is akin to a New Yorker pulling his vehicle from storage to run errands in midtown for a few hours. It's crazy. It doesn't even seem like an option. But what if I made it an option? I decided to try the unthinkable: live in LA for one week while my car sat in the driveway. The goal: see just how dependent I was on my car -- and determine just how much I could buck that dependency.

Your checklist for a beefy LA lunch

On the Burger Trail in Los Angeles

The city of Los Angeles is known for Hollywood stars, sprawling traffic...and gourmet burgers. Yes, that sandwich concoction that first appeared in the late 1800s has become a staple in the City of Angels. There are the obvious picks like Umami, Father's Office, Apple Pan and of course In-N-Out; but a quick Yelp search for "burger" reveals almost 6,000 places to sit and enjoy ground meat on a bun. We spent a week seeking some of the lesser known but equally (arguably more) loved options.

Confusing, a little odd... and molto bello

Driving the Dino 308 GT4, the Most Controversial Ferrari in History

Featuring a slew of firsts, the Ferrari Dino 308 GT4 was wrapped in controversy, failed in sales and has been looked down upon by aficionados for years. Today there is a resurgence in the interest of this ill-fated groundbreaker. We talked to one proud owner to find out why.

Clean, Torquey and Efficient -- What's Not to Love?

Economy Plus: Driving 5 Great Diesels

The only problem with hybrids is how boring they can be to drive. Diesel cars, on the other hand, offer outstanding torque with hybrid-like fuel economy. We take five great ones out for a spin.

A Great American SUV, Proven

Six Weeks in the Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel

The 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee EcoDiesel will haul you and your stuff for nearly 730 miles on one tank, all the while spoiling you with leather, panoramic roof, digital screens and tons of hauling capabilities. Is this the best American SUV ever made? After six weeks and a variety of tasks and duties, we think it's certainly up there.

Not your neighbor's crossover

Driving the SQ5, Audi’s Secret Powerhouse

From the Archives: Perhaps the most enjoyable car to drive in 2014 is one you wouldn't even stop to admire in a parking lot. The 2014 Audi SQ5 ($59,400) doesn't have ostentatious styling; its idling engine wouldn't wake a sleeping babe; it can seat a family of four comfortably with room for luggage. Yet it's an absolute powerhouse.

Back and better than ever...or is it?

Quick Spin: 2015 Volkswagen Golf GTI

Longer, wider, lighter and with brand new tech, the Mk VII Golf GTI goes head to head...with past versions of itself.

Polishing the star

A Visit to the Mercedes-Benz Classics Center

From the Archives: Vintage has gained traction in recent years, arguably as a reaction to our digital, disposable age. This rediscovered appreciation for beautiful, meaningful objects from our past is exactly why the Mercedes-Benz Classics Center in Irvine, CA exists...that, and to bring back to life those cars which cause us to lust from the deepest parts of our soft, chewy automotive centers.

One 577-hp wagon. One dry lake bed.

GP Short: Mercedes-Benz E63 AMG S 4Matic Wagon

The 2014 MB E 63 AMG S 4Matic Wagon has more horsepower than a Ferrari 458 and gets to 60 a full second before a Porsche 911. And it has room for your family, their luggage and the family dog. We turned off traction control and let it loose on a dry lake bed.

Five reasons to start a family

Testing Five Great Alternatives to the Minivan

There's no question about a minivan's utility. But until someone comes up with one that doesn't at least partially emasculate red-blooded men, we choose to drive these other vehicles -- ones that offer up utility, a semblance of driving pleasure and better aesthetics than a toaster oven.

If the Cloud rode a motorcycle, this would be it

Quick Spin: 2014 Zero S Electric Motorcycle

After testing out Zero's do-anything DS last year we were sold on electric motorcycles. We wanted more, and we got it with a chance to cruise around on their torquey 54 horsepower sport bike, the 2014 Zero S.

Million Dollar Baby (maker)

Inside a Porsche Panamera Turbo Camera Car

From the Archives: Though most movies don't cause the viewer to think about camera angles, lighting or color tone, there are some (Star Trek, Eagle Eye, Fast & Furious) with sequences and scenes that leave you wondering "How the hell did they shoot that?" This is how the hell: a matte-black, modded out Porsche Panamera Turbo, replete with a full camera crane. Needless to say, we smiled for the camera.

Watching Pedalers and Panoramas from a support car

GP Short: 2014 Tour of California

We took our espresso stateside this year, catching the Giro d'Italia on television and showing up in person for the 2014 Tour of California, where we shot this video while riding along in a support car.

Vanquishing miles of road and years of your salary

The 2014 Aston Martin Vanquish Volante Balances Beauty and Brawn

Aston Martin has been putting cars on the racetrack, in movies and on teenage boys' walls for more than 100 years; no wonder even people who don't care about cars can recognize them in an instant. The 2014 Aston Martin Vanquish Volante ($296,000) is just another prince in their royal lineage.

Polishing the star

The Future of the Past: Visiting the Mercedes-Benz Classic Center

Vintage has gained traction in recent years, arguably as a reaction to our digital, disposable age. This rediscovered appreciation for beautiful, meaningful objects from our past is exactly why the Mercedes-Benz Classics Center in Irvine, CA exists...that, and to bring back to life those cars which cause us to lust from the deepest parts of our soft, chewy automotive centers.

Not your neighbor's crossover

Audi’s Secret Powerhouse: Quick Spin in the Audi SQ5

Perhaps the most enjoyable car to drive in 2014 is one you wouldn't even stop to admire in a parking lot. The 2014 Audi SQ5 ($59,400) doesn't have ostentatious styling; its idling engine wouldn't wake a sleeping babe; it can seat a family of four comfortably with room for luggage. Yet it's an absolute powerhouse.

Your average valedictorian Nascar champion

30 Minutes With: Brian Vickers

Racing since age eight, missing prom so he could suit up for the Nascar Nationwide series, winning Nascar's Busch series championship at the tender age of 20: Brian Vickers sounds like a man of one dimension. That would be a false assumption.

Rubbin' is racing

Hot Laps: Becoming a Nascar Driver in 72 Hours

From the Archives: The best way to appreciate NASCAR is not by cracking a Bud and plopping on the couch but by getting in the driver’s seat. Unfortunately that's a pipe dream for most -- but when PEAK Motor Oil invited me to their Stock Car Dream Challenge as they searched for a future driver for the Michael Waltrip Race team, I grabbed my helmet and Nomex onesie and streamed Garth Brooks/Chris Gaines all the way to Charlotte Motor Speedway.

Old World Skill, New World Techniques

GP Short: Sitting in on a 3D Tailoring at Seize Sur Vingt

New York-based Seize Sur Vingt understands the importance of fit, but then, so do the vast majority of tailors. More important is that they've come up with a new way to bring top-notch Italian tailors and American clients together that doesn't involve a nine hour flight. It's a simple solution that long-distance daters have been using for years: Skype.

These are a few of our favorite things

Photo Essay: Cars and Coffee

From the Archives: One of my favorite things to do on a Saturday is roll out of bed at 5:30 a.m., grab a camera and my jacket and drive 48 miles from LA to a business park in Irvine. There, on any given Saturday, hundreds of cars worth millions of dollars gather for Cars and Coffee, a special event where two common denominators create a mood of friendship, relaxation and shared passion.

The filmmaker/editor's secret weapon

Tested: Blackmagic Cinema Camera

Fitting right between the Indie filmmaker's DSLR and Hollywood studio's Arri Alexa, the Blackmagic Cinema Camera ($2,000), with its 13 stops of dynamic range and 2.5K sensor, makes filmmakers jump for joy. We took it on a test drive.

A Bacchanal of Music, Sun and Style

GP Short: Coachella

Goddammit, you missed Coachella again. Bradley Hasemeyer, recognizing your FOMO, made the quick 130-mile journey from LA to Coachella Valley to capture the iconic music festival on nothing but an iPhone 5 and the iPro lens kit.

No excuses, just good shots

Essential Gear for the Amateur Movie Maker

From the Archives: Today's affordable tools, cameras, classes and copious creative outlets have brought making a film (one of the best story-telling devices) nearly to the everyman. Still, all those advances can't change a basic fact: sometimes making a movie means going to where the story is rather than waiting for it to come to you. But paying to check 10 Pelican cases of equipment will essentially eat your entire production budget, not to mention it's tough to sneak into a location if you have a fleet of boxes and bags. This kit can be carried by one or two people in traditional suitcases -- which means you get your shots, no matter where those shots may be.

The Asian Phaeton?

Behind The Wheel: 2015 Kia K900

Kia has far surpassed expectations in a relatively short time frame, shifting from a producer of poorly designed, poorly built econo-boxes to well-made, adventurously styled cars that square off with practical Asian stalwarts like Honda and Toyota. Recently they set their sights on the European luxury market with their 2015 Kia K900 ($59,500 base). We grabbed some seat time in a powerful, VIP-trimmed $65,000 Kia to decide for ourselves if it was worth the price tag -- and to decide if the Germans should feel threatened by this Asian invasion.

Achtung, Baby

Behind the Wheel: Audi Quattro Concept Mini

Concept cars, by definition, push the limits of automotive invention. But even in a field of enigmas and paradigm shifters there can be standouts, vehicles that make competitors look like toys. This is the realm of the new Audi Quattro Concept Mini, which calls to mind an R8 V10 Spyder designed by a Lilliputian Frank Lloyd Wright. It's whole-heartedly future-thinking in its indoctrination of a new and entirely untapped target market. Watch the video for our review.