When purchasing a new car, crash safety ratings tend to fall below other priorities like style, fuel economy, performance, amenities, cost and even brand loyalty. That’s unfortunate, since more than a handful of cars will consistently fail to perform well in the one situation we all hope to avoid: a serious accident. If you’re smart, and especially if you have kids in tow, you’ll take the time to bone up on which vehicles are the safest. Of the 22 cars that received the highest safety rating from the IIHS (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety), these are the absolute best.
Keep Your Backseat Driver Safe
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.
The Worst Kind of Collision Course
Evidence is mounting that points to the type of frontal collision as a grave contributor to whether passengers live or die in an accident, alongside the typical factors like speed and road conditions. An off-set crash — where 25 percent or less of the fascia of the car collides with either another vehicle or a hard, stationary object and causes the car to pivot sharply — is especially lethal, accounting for a quarter of frontal crash deaths. We examine why.
Something's askew in the world of crash testing
It’s both conventional wisdom and fact that heavier cars tend to be safer for their drivers and passengers in crashes. But when it comes to crash test ratings that are widely recognized in the automotive industry and consumers, weight is not brought into the equation with the heft it deserves.
Long Rifle of the Air Age
When General Nathan Twining, chief of staff of the U.S. Air Force from 1953 to 1957, called the Boeing B-52 “the long rifle of the air age” shortly after it entered service on June 29, 1955, no one imagined that the eight-engine, 390,000-pound bomber would still be operational 60 years later.
Racing's Up-and-Comer Series Appeals to both fans and drivers
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.
Old School and Off Road
Steep slopes, muddy trails, river crossings and scree slopes turn a garden variety trip into a journey. Adrenaline junkies, take note: off-road excursions are just as exciting as transcontinental road trips, if not more so. Set yourselves up with any of these great vintage off-road adventure cars and you’ll see why.
This Week's News On Wheels
This Week in Motoring: a whale of a plane, the Uber/Lyft wars, one man’s reunion with his vintage Porsche, a commemorative Land Cruiser and more.
High-Class Elbow Grease
The 2014 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance is a six-day automotive smörgåsbord on the bucolic greens of the Monterey Peninsula. We sent our non-car enthusiast editor, Matthew Ankeny, to see the scene, hear the stories, and relay the results.
Riding Rough Around The Edges
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.
From NYC to Maine in Toyota's big rig
When daydreaming of a classic summer road trip vehicle, a pickup truck is not what normally springs to mind — especially a massive 5,800-pound one that gets 17 mpg. However, seeing as the 2014 Toyota Tundra ($26,000+) could haul the space shuttle Endeavor across an LA freeway, I figured it could handle my family, a few bags and nearly 700 miles of road tripping.
Father of the modern SUV, for better or worse
You can’t build a successful SUV today without incorporating comforts like leather and DVD players alongside trail-dominating suspension and chunky all-terrain tires. If any car proved this formula was a successful one, it was the car that did it first: the Jeep Wagoneer.
Hyundai Makes a Comeback
The old-wood pine forests and gravel roads of the Neste Oil WRC Finland made for gorgeous scenery in early August. And Team Hyundai, plus two of their Finnish drivers, made for a great story.
Bring the rugged past to the present
The Land Rover Defender 110 and the Jeep Grand Wagoneer are two of the finest classic SUVs on the market; both are as capable as they are classy. The only question is: how much money are you willing to throw at these bad boys?
This week's news on wheels
This Week in Motoring: the most expensive car ever sold, plenty of eco-cars, the science behind Tony Stewart’s tragic sprint car accident, Motor Trend‘s awesome drag race and much more.
The horse without the mane is just as wild
In the middle of a cool Chicago summer, sunlight bounces off the unmistakeable Rosso Corsa hood of a V8 Ferrari. A mere eighth of a depression of the throttle produces a sound I can only describe as a chorus of angels descending to earth on winged stallions. Against all odds, Ferrari’s delicious V8 458 Spider has won me over to top-down driving.
Prancing, galloping and snorting beauties
Great Ferraris are some of the most stunning cars to ever put rubber to pavement. These ten pageant winners out of Maranello stir the soul and make car lovers out of hotwheels-vrooming youths.
The Theater of Motorsport
There’s a particular theater to motorsport. The hair-bristling caterwaul of a race exhaust. The aromas of hot metal mechanics. The gritty dust of tire soot. And that’s for spectators.
Step beyond the yellow line into pit row and things get far more visceral. And though we could prattle on in paragraphs about what it’s like to be face-to-face with theatrics of racing Ferraris, we figured it best to report this story through the medium of film.
The Quail Preview
Ferrari enthusiast and luxury watch retailer David Lee is headed to this year’s The Quail at Pebble Beach. And, more importantly, he’s bringing his collection of vintage Ferarri supercars with him. We got a sneak peak at some of his rare beauties.
The Ferrari 330 P3 and P4 may have never won at Le Mans, but they remain some of the most beautiful and coveted cars of all time. Born of a bitter rivalry between Ford and Ferrari, this is their story.
The Horse Prances On
From motorsport victories to pop culture appearances, these are the moments that helped solidify Ferrari’s rightful spot as one of the greatest (if not the greatest) automotive marques of all time.
The Week's News on Wheels
This Week in Motoring: Lambo’s new performance driving school, this year’s Pebble Beach Concours, a winged ambulance and more.
Confusing, a little odd... and molto bello
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.
We drove a Chevy Cruze Clean Turbo Diesel from New York City to West Michigan for a 2,000-mile round trip. Here’s what we learned.
Clean, Torquey and Efficient -- What's Not to Love?
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.
Feel The (Clean) Burn
Diesels have come a long way since the days of smoke spewing trucks and roaring German sedans. New advances in diesel tech have made the fuel a more viable option for passenger cars, and they may have some serious benefits over their gasoline counterparts.
Where MPG meet MPH
Diesel engines may just be the perfect fit for motorcycles. They offer bullet-proof reliability, stump pulling torque and the kind of range even Ted Simon can only dream of. Add to that the fact that refuelling doesn’t involve extended time out of the saddle and it makes you wonder why there aren’t more on the market. We found four examples that would look great
in our garage on the road.
A battle of torque, efficiency, and German luxury
The Germans are all over the diesel car market. Which makes complete sense: those Europeans are passionate about the practicality that diesel-powered cars provide, not to mention the kind of torque that can pull Tyrannosaur teeth from their sockets. If you want a capable German diesel that nets both solid mileage numbers, good driving dynamics and the aesthetics and comfort a stylish German sedan affords, then look to Audi and BMW at the two ends of the price spectrum.
A Great American SUV, Proven
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.
A case study in the downsides of the CUV
The BMW X6 been around since 2007 and has found shockingly good sales success for BMW, even earning a refresh this year: all this, despite its inferior specs, a small interior, and the fact that it looks like it’s been whacked with the same ugly stick as the Pontiac Aztek. So how does the X6 manage to draw buyers?