Tag Archives: Asian Cars

The KIA Stinger GT Looks Phenomenal in Person

KIA Stinger GT AWD KIA Stinger GT AWD

Most people seemed to agree that the KIA Stinger GT looked enticing when it first broke cover. I also heard many people say they’d buy one and de-badge it so no one would know it’s a KIA. With its wonderful proportions, the Stinger GT looks even better in person than it does in photos, and the fact that it’s a KIA doesn’t bug me in the slightest. I’m someone who likes to give credit where credit is due, and this could well be a home run for KIA. Let them have their shine.

I’m very curious to see what pricepoint KIA will place the Stinger at. I think it’s obvious they need to go lower to compete with the likes of the BMW 4 Series, but how much lower before it’s too low to be seen as a genuine competitor?

-Nick

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The KIA Stinger GT may shake things up

Kia Stinger GT 1

I saw the rear 3/4 view first, and I thought it might be an Alfa. To my surprise the headline said “KIA.” KIA, as in stupid dancing hamsters, KIA, as in obnoxious salesmen, surrounded by colorful balloons, trying to hard sell the shit out of you. KIA, as in the econo-box of econo-boxes. WTF, right?

But really, those of us who’ve been paying attention, aren’t too shocked. KIA, and parent company Hyundai, have been drastically redefining themselves in the past few years. My last memory of KIA is actually of driving the mighty K900 at Pebble Beach a few years back. I actually liked the car itself a lot, but KIA hadn’t done enough with its brand to be making a serious BMW 7 Series rival. $70,000 for a car with a KIA badge was, and is still, a bad joke, but it showed their ambition, and I definitely loved that.

Now we have the KIA Stinger, a bonafide sport sedan with some serious credentials. One thing I love about Hyundai/KIA’s approach in recent years, is they like to bring a bazooka to the gunfight. They really do their homework when developing a new model, and they aim to win.

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New beginnings, I bought Al’s Miata

Little Red Miata 3

Over the last few months, Al has been constantly talking about the idea of selling his Mazda Miata and buying some cool old American car. He’s been on craigslist like crazy, and has been continually messaging me and many of his other friends asking our thoughts on the possibilities.

I recently got a great new job, which brought with it a nice little pay increase, so naturally I’d been thinking of getting some new wheels. I’ve been missing my old Miata like crazy since I sold it a few years back. It’s like there’s been a hole in my soul that can only be filled by one thing. I needed to get myself another Miata!

So, a week or so ago, when Al sent me some links of cars he was looking at, I floated the idea. I said, “You keep talking about selling your Miata to get something else, and now I’m looking to buy a Miata. Let’s make something happen here.”

Al brought the car by on Saturday morning. I took it for a quick drive, looked it over, and I was sold. We went to the DMV and did all the paperwork.

I paid Al with cash money, but he wasn’t about to go to the bank. No, we were going to check out a car right away. I’ll let him tell the rest tomorrow.

I’m going to live with my new Miata for a few weeks before I do a proper article on it, but so far, so fun. It sure as hell isn’t perfect, but it isn’t trying to be, and that’s the whole point.

It is a delightful little machine!

-Nick Walker

Little Red Miata 2 Little Red Miata 4 Little Red Miata 1

2017 Mazda ND Miata RF, a Skeptical Reaction

2017 Mazda ND Miata RF

The Mazda Miata is now a hard-top targa, complete with flying buttresses!

Mazda calls it the Miata RF Hard Top Convertible, with RF standing for “Retractable Fastback.” Essentially they looked at the Porsche 911 Targa, thought it was a good idea, and here we are.

But is this really a good idea?

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Infiniti Q50 Red Sport 400 Review: Turbocharged For Your Pleasure!

Infiniti Q50 S 3.0t Review 12

I’ve been waiting for the Japanese luxury brands to go turbo for a long time now. They’ve been keeping their cars pretty simple for years, and that’s great for reliability, but in the end, the turbo European cars were faster, a lot faster.  Well now it seems the tables have turned. Infiniti has finally joined the turbo game, and they’ve brought a ringer.

Their new 3.0L twin turbo V6 comes in two flavors, one with 300hp and one with 400hp. The first will compete directly with the existing sport sedan pack, and the second will blow them away. Even with the German’s conservative horsepower claims, none of their offerings reach the 400hp mark. That means the high-output Infiniti Q50 Red Sport 400 I drove here is some very serious business.

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Configurator Fun: 2017 Acura NSX

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The 2017 Acura NSX Configurator is live now, so I wanted to see what my hypothetical new NSX would look like, and how much it would cost.

I’ve stated before that I think the new NSX is a tad overpriced. It starts at $156,000 and can top $200,000 with options. Frankly, I’d have a tough time spending that kind of money for an Acura badge. That said, as a 573hp hybrid supercar, the NSX doesn’t come up short in performance or technology appeal. I also think it looks great, especially with the right options.

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Subaru BRZ, Scion FR-S, and Toyota GT86 FA20 Tuning and Modification Guide

Stanced Scion FRS First Class FitmentThe Subaru BRZ, Scion FR-S, and Toyota GT86 are all basically the same car underneath. A popular fun machine at an affordable price is an appealing thing, and they’ve sold pretty well.

Most car enthusiasts will wind up wanting to modify and upgrade their cars, tailoring its experience for their own personal tastes. There are many ways to go about modifying a Toyobaru 86 variant. This is my own take and advice on the best way to go about modifying the car intelligently and cost-effectively.

Feel free to agree or disagree in the comments…

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Highlights from the 2016 Philadelphia Auto Show

Philly Auto Show 2016 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio

The Philadelphia Auto Show was lively this year, with many of the newest releases on display.

I must admit that I am completely in love with the blue Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio you see above (it’s stick too). I also got my first look at the new Fiata (124 Spider), Cadillac XT5, Honda Ridgeline, and the oh-so-sleek Volvo S90. I also got a good look at the new Toyota Prius, which was regrettable on the eyes.

There are a lot of great new cars to be excited about!

Enjoy the gallery.

-Nick

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Jay Leno Drives This Custom JDM Datsun Sunny

This is a classic Datsun Sunny 1200 pickup and it is a JDM wet dream.

It has a custom front clip, made to look like an original Skyline GT-R, and it has an SR20DET engine under the hood with a big ass turbo on it. In terms of “cool,” this Datsun is just dripping with it, and once again, Jay Leno proves he’s probably the luckiest guy on Earth.

Enjoy!

-Nick

Stanced Mitsubishi Lancer Evo at First Class Fitment

Modified Mitsubishi Lancer Evo First Class Fitment 3

This Mitsubishi Evo was clean as hell. It looked a lot like that ridiculous Time Attack Evo from Forza Motorsport 3 that may have been the cause of a broken controller.

I’m not sure exactly what mods were done to this car, but it looks like one of those deadly Evos that might just be able to embarrass some pompous fool in a Ferrari.

Either way, it’s level of stance was on point for me. It’s low and flush enough to look great, but there’s still a little bit of room for the suspension to move.

The one question I really want to know, though, is:

Is that wing really functional for the car’s performance?

Enjoy the photos!

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NAIAS 2016 Reaction: Lexus LC 500

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Yes, folks, this is a real production car, not a concept car. Lexus dropped a bomb on the North American International Auto Show, and they call it the LC 500.

What is it?

The Lexus LC looks to be a luxury sports car somewhere between the small Porsche 911 and the huge BMW M6. It appears Lexus has taken the inspiration behind their mighty LFA supercar, and has distilled it into a more approachable, more affordable, sports car.

The price for the LC 500 will be around $100,000 when it goes on sale, right on par with the Porsche and Bimmer.

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2016 Mazda ND Miata Club Review: Joy On Four Wheels

Mazda ND Miata Club 1

The original Mazda Miata brought driving enjoyment to the masses. Like the great British and Italian roadsters before it, the Miata offered the full wind-in-your-hair experience, but it did so without all of the reliability problems suffered by the european cars. It was a simple, affordable, enjoyable machine. They basically materialized fun, and gave it four wheels.

Some have criticized the Miata for being soft as a sports car, though, even saying that it isn’t really a sports car at all. For the original NA Miata in stock form, I have to I agree. It’s a lot of fun, and is surely a great roadster, but a stock NA Miata lacks the handling composure that really defines a true sports car.

As the Miata has grown and evolved over the years, Mazda has worked to make it more of a sports car, while keeping it a great roadster as well. When I took the new ND Miata out for a spin, it became clear that Mazda has finally found the right balance for the total Miata experience.

In some regards Mazda has taken the Miata back to its roots. In other ways it has benefitted from many modern technological improvements. All in all, I am confident in saying that it is the best Miata they’ve ever made. Here’s why…

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