Audi Q7

Audi Q7

The Audi Q7 was first unveiled for an exclusive group of journalists. However, it was a closed-door affair that turned out to be quite a successful one with several people from Audi of America joining in to answer any questions regarding the new Audi Q7. The new Audi Q7 is built on the very same platform that is also used by the Volkswagen Touareg and the Porsche Cayenne. It also holds a wheelbase that is quite longer than the Volkswagen Touareg by almost six inches. This kind of wheelbase then provides the Audi Q7 an overall look that exudes a sleek and stretched look.
The Audi Q7 is a sport utility vehicle. This vehicle has proportions that when combined work out very nicely providing a strong look. The vehicle contains and features headlights, tail lights, rear view mirrors and door handles that exude the traditional look that is considered to be simply an Audi. The Audi Q7 SUV has a grill that goes well with the vehicle’s painted horizontal strip and as well as the adopted standard dark gray that is quite standard for Audi’s vehicle lineup. Compared to the other models in the Audi family, the chrome strip around the grille for the Audi Q7 is considered to be quite narrow thus assisting greatly in making the grille of the Audi Q7 look a less overpowering.
It could be noticed that the Audi Q7 has the very same classic proportions that Audi Avants have. This includes a high shoulder line, a narrow window area, a sloping roofline that moves towards the rear of the Audi Q7, and an angled rear window. These all combine to provide a classy look for this sport utility vehicle. Basically, the taillights of the Audi Q7 are very much like the Audi Avant with its tips forming top corners of the license plate opening. Other than that, the Audi Q7 also has a rear bumper that has two long and thin reflectors mounted on it. This rear bumper holds the added assumed function of being turn signals or rear fog lights.
Setting the Audi Q7 apart from the Volkswagen Touareg and the Porsche Cayenne is this vehicle’s optional third row seating. The center row for this sport utility vehicle has the ability to fold back down and slide forward, thus giving ample and easy access to the rear seating. It also contains a middle row that has the capacity to slide forward and provide more legroom for the rear seats. As for the third row, this entire row of seats could fold flat on the floor when it is not utilized. This gives more cargo area in the rear. The Audi Q7 also has an electronic control for this third row.
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Mercedes-Benz® parts in the Aftermarket

Mercedes-Benz® parts in the Aftermarket

Traditionally, finding a source for OEM and aftermarket Mercedes parts meant having to live in or close to a large city like Los Angeles, and flipping through the phonebook to find a licensed Mercedes parts dealer. However, the power of the internet allows for the luxury of finding Mercedes parts and accessories from the comfort of your own home. Whether you are shopping for Mercedes accessories to upgrade your interior or exterior, or repair parts to replace your Mercedes wheels or those squeaky brakes, finding your parts is no longer like pulling teeth! Online Mercedes parts distributors tend to carry an impressive line of quality manufacturers, including Genuine Mercedes-Benz, Bosch, MP Design, Bilstein, GAP, Schatz, and H&R to name a few, so finding quality Mercedes accessories is never difficult.

Mercedes interior accessories come from a number of high quality designers. MP Design is known for its classy Mercedes interior accessories such as front seat adjustment covers, pillar covers and front door speaker covers. Genuine Mercedes-Benz, Lloyd, and Husky, each carry a line of high quality Mercedes floor mats.

As for exterior accessories, Schatz is known for its quality bumper grilles and spoilers. Genuine Mercedes-Benz and Coverking both carry a line of high quality Mercedes Car Covers. Genuine Mercedes-Benz offers that OEM look and feel whereas Coverking is known for it’s its high level of customization. Expression and Lorinser both have an entire line of Mercedes Body Kits to take your Mercedes experience to a new level.

Finding replacement Mercedes-Benz parts can seem effortless thanks to the numerous Mercedes parts manufacturers like Bilstein, Bosch, and Hella. Likewise, Genuine Mercedes-Benz manufactures a number of OEM Mercedes-Benz parts. Whether you’re shopping for Mercedes-Benz wheels or Mercedes wheel spacers, AMG, Lorinser, and Genuine Mercedes-Benz each carry a line of quality Mercedes-Benz wheels and wheel spacers.

While shopping for Mercedes parts online is often confusing given the lack of visual application of the product, companies like Performance Products have online animated Mercedes parts diagrams that make choosing replacement parts a much less daunting task. With parts diagrams you can see how your chosen Mercedes engine part fits into your Mercedes engine, or how your chosen Mercedes brake pad fits up against your rotor. Parts diagrams take some of the uneasiness out of shopping for parts shopping by providing the visual comfort generally associated with a brick and mortar store.

Lexus LS 2006: Spanning Horizons

Lexus LS 2006: Spanning Horizons

The Toyota Motor Corporation is responsible for the Lexus brand. After all, Lexus is a Japanese brand name that is used by this automobile manufacturer when exporting their products to some places like in North America, the Middle East, Europe, Africa, Latin America, Asia, and Oceania. Also, this brand is the manufacturer’s line for its family of luxury automobiles and vehicles.

One of the Lexus vehicles is the Lexus LS 2006. This vehicle has always held a striking presence. It bears a sculpted form as well as refined features that make heads turn. It also has an aggressively styled front end features. To emphasize its bold look, the streamlined headlamps and front grille gives the vehicle that such appeal. It is sporty and it has a wide stance.

This vehicle has been crafted with a many choices made available both for the exterior and the interior. For the exterior, the choices include Blue Onyx Pearl, Black Cherry Pearl, Cypress Pearl, Briarwood Pearl, Mystic Gold Metallic, Moonlight Pearl, Crystal White, Mercury Metallic, Flint Mica, and Black Onyx. As per the interior colors, customers could actually choose from Cashmere Leather Trim with Golden Bird’s Eye Maple Accent, Ash Leather Trim with Walnut Accent, Black Leather Trim with Walnut Accent, Ecru Perforated Leather Trim with Golden Bird’s Eye Maple Accent, Saddle Perforated Leather Trim with Antique Walnut Accent, or Black Perforated Leather Trim with Antique Walnut Accent.

The Lexus LS 2006 boasts of several features. The Smart Access is actually an option for the vehicle. However, this system actually enables owners to lock and unlock their doors, open the trunk, and also turn on the ignition switch without having to take out the keys to the vehicle out of their pockets or purses. This system actually works just by it sensing the Smart Access key. Also, the Lexus LS 2006’s alloy wheels allot a huge effort of adding to the appeal and beauty of this vehicle. Backed up with the right kind of tires, this vehicle has been rolling its way to success.

Other features of this vehicle include adaptive front lightining, High Intensity Discharge (HID) headlamps with a blue hue, an intuitive parking assist, a laser cruise control system, a power moonroof, auto dimming mirrors, rain sensing wipers, the Mark Levinson audio system, the voice activated navigation system, a backup camera, the Bluetooth technology, a dual climate control system, a rear seat climate control system, rear seat luxuries, a power rear sunshade, the satellite radio, and the HomeLink remote control system.

The new Lexus LS 2006’s total package of features, space, and style puts it at the head of its class. Its performance could also be maintained and taken cared of, that is if the owner uses superior Lexus parts from Auto Parts Discount. Its extensive array of maximum quality Lexus parts and accessories await customers at great wholesale deals. In case you have any difficulties in choosing the right kind of Lexus parts for your vehicle, Auto Parts Discount has friendly customer service staffs that are ready to serve you.

Cadillac v. Lincoln: Does It Matter?

Cadillac v. Lincoln: Does It Matter?

Back during the 1950s and all the way through the 1980s, two American luxury car brands battled for supremacy. For General Motors, builder of Cadillacs and for the Ford Motor Company, builder of Lincolns, corporate prestige rested upon which automaker sold the most models each year. For many years, a pitched battle was raised until the clock struck midnight on New Year’s Eve. During those years, no one knew for sure who the sales winner was until well into January; that is when the final sales tallies were released. Today, the luxury car market has changed dramatically, so much so, that the storied battle between the two automakers no longer matters. So, what brought about this change? Several things, please read on for the details.

More Competition — Before the 1980s, Mercedes and BMW were minor players in the luxury car market. Infiniti, Lexus, and Acura were previously nonexistent brands created during the 1980s by parent Japanese auto giants, Nissan, Toyota, and Honda respectively. Add in Audi, Jaguar, Volvo, and Saab and the competition really heats up.

Higher Incomes — The average American family’s income level has surged over the past two decades, meaning more buyers are choosing luxury brands. Why settle for a Chevy when you can afford a Cadillac? Why buy a Cadillac when there are so many other choices for consumers?

American Quality Problems — Both Cadillac and Lincoln have had their share of quality issues over the years. Brand confusion has reigned too as Cadillac once sold rebadged Chevy Cavaliers as Cimarrons and as so many of Lincoln’s models have failed to capture the imagination of potential buyers. European brands gained in prominence as many of their models were considered to be better engineered, better built, more fuel efficient, and just as luxurious as the American brands.

Cadillac Transforms, Lincoln Wallows — Although Mercedes and Lexus both outsell Cadillac today, Cadillac has made dramatic improvements over the past ten years while Lincoln has not. Most Lincoln vehicles sold today are simply reskinned Fords while Cadillac has been developing and successfully marketing new models that are unique to the brand. Most Cadillac products today compare favorably with BMW, Lexus, Infiniti, and Mercedes vehicles. Most Lincolns do not compare favorably with any other luxury models. All of this has been proven out in the marketplace as Cadillac regularly outsells Lincoln by more than 2 to 1.

Yes, the luxury brand battle has changed well beyond Cadillac versus Lincoln giving consumers better vehicles and more choice. While Cadillac has successfully redone its dowdy image, Lincoln has not. That, with the increased competition from foreign makes, spells all the difference in what was once a heated battle for American luxury car supremacy.

2006 Chevrolet Corvette Z06

2006 Chevrolet Corvette Z06

What’s new for the 2006 Corvette Z06?
First, the 2006 Chevrolet Corvette has been redesigned for the 2006-year model. It has enhanced features, but in this article I want to tell you specifically about the Z06 features to this model.
The Z06 is, of course, the fastest vette ever built. It will have a 500 horsepower 427 cubic inch engine with lightweight components. What does this mean in a 3130-pound car? It means superior performance beyond all other Corvettes. Estimated 0-60 in less than 4 seconds along with a sub 12-second quarter mile. Top speed is reported to be more than 190 MPH (on a closed race track of course).
What makes this new Corvette so much better? Several components:
500-hp/475 lb.-ft torque
7000 RPM redline
11.0:1 Compression
Titanium connecting rods
Titanium intake valves and pushrods
Hand built engine
Dry sump lubrication
Aluminum body structure
Carbon fiber front fenders
Magnesium front cradle
Fixed roof design for rigidity
Larger grill and cold air intake scoop
Wide rear fenders and a rear spoiler incorporated into the tail of the car
Larger cross-drilled front and rear disc brakes
Larger wheels and tires
3” exhaust
Light weight seats with fixed side bolsters
Options:
Bose audio with an in dash six CD changer
Polished wheels
Telescoping steering wheel
Heated seats
Navigation system
Homelink
XM Satellite Radio
All in all, this is going to be one of the best Corvettes Chevrolet has ever offered. I can’t wait to see one.

2006 Chevy Corvette: Promises of Amazement

2006 Chevy Corvette: Promises of Amazement

The 2006 Chevy Corvette comes as a well balanced package in a vehicle. It has set refinement in its interior and stance as well as exuding the modern sports car feel. For the past years, the Chevy Corvette has consequently received and bagged the Car of the Year award. Starting out as rumors, the 2006 Chevy Corvette has certainly made sure that it would live and outlive the gossip running about. General Motors has made a statement that the 2006 Chevy Corvette is quickest and fastest car that the company has ever produced.

This vehicle comes with sophistication and is a high-performance machine. In many ways, the Chevy Corvette shows off its well-mannered and simply ride dynamics as well as an ultra-slick powertrain performance. Its interior is very much made from quality materials that provides a pleasant and comforting experience for those who would be riding in it. To increase down force, the Chevy Corvette will have a rear lip added to it and will also exhibit a more rounded trailing edge.

This new car has certainly benefited from its advanced hydro forming frame-rail process that was first introduced to the Chevy C5. The adding in and mounting of Magne Ride shock absorbers has proven to be an advantage for it has provided the 2006 Chevy Corvette an active handling as well as an innovative ride system. This vehicle also bears the Chevy C6 powertrain as well as other technologies that are top in its class. The vehicle’s engine has the capacity and capability to make 500 horsepower at around 6,200 rpm. Optional is the 7.0 liter LS7 V8 engine that is hand built.

This new vehicle would also sport several color schemes that would include white, red, and gold. As for the 2006 Chevy Corvette’s exterior, it will boast a more daring look that will reflect General Motor’s willingness to accept risks when it comes to style and design. The 2006 Chevy Corvette will combine soft curves with machined edges. It will also show off its bold aesthetic design as well as its muscular form and shape from its chiseled front, muscular fenders and flares to its street dominating attitude. The vehicle will hold a full aluminum chassis, large brakes, carbon fiber front fenders and a magnesium engine cradle as well as a removable roof panel.

As for the 2006 Chevy Corvette’s styling, the vehicle will show off great differences to its predecessors. The front end will receive a revised larger air inlet. Also added in would be a function hood scoop, new side vents, a rear lip spoiler and very unique wheels. The vehicle also lost its power passenger seat along with the electric seat bolsters. By eliminating these, the 2006 Chevy Corvette would be saving much on weight. However, what comes as standard are dual zone air conditioning, leather upholstery made in two tones, and a head up display system. Options for this vehicle include a Bose stereo, side impact airbags, a navigation system, and polished wheels.

For the original and best car on the market, nothing is befitting than the excellently crafted Chevy Corvette parts and Chevy parts at Car Parts Rush. This online store has in its stock the highest quality Chevy auto parts that will retain the Chevy’s driving dynamics coupled up with high technology and amazing design. Customers and visitors can simply browse at Car Parts Rush’s website and they can understand why customers and Chevy enthusiasts keep coming back to Car Parts Rush for their auto body parts. Aside from that, Car Parts Rush also takes care of a the task that it has given itself – providing loyalty to its customers along with providing excellent products and unequalled service.

Drive The Dream! The Ultimate Guide To Exotic Car Rental.

Drive The Dream! The Ultimate Guide To Exotic Car Rental.

Let’s face it guys; we’re not all going to be able to pay for a Ferrari or a Porsche. Despite this may be a sad fact to have to face up to, yet its there nonetheless. At times exotic cars are out of reach for all except for those who are affluent and even they occasionally have trouble keeping up with the payments and maintenance of a Bentley or a Lotus. Sure the allure is strong; simply imagine slipping into the leather cockpit of your Lamborghini and cruising around curves at hundred miles per hour with the wind in your hair and the sun on your face.

Sure you may have everything from your driving gloves to your sunglasses and your driver’s license, though the one thing you wish for is to have enough money for a Lamborghini. And then there’s the Camry or Taurus, which in spite everything just don’t have enough horsepower to take mountain roads at 100, and even though you could get it going that fast it would in all probability fly off the road due to its lousy suspension.

Nevertheless what if you didn’t have the chance to own a Lamborghini or Lotus to be able to drive it around those hairpin turns? Well, nowadays we do have a great way to try out a luxury or high-powered sports car of our dreams, with exotic car rental we don’t have to sell our house or steal one from one of your yuppie friends. There are a number of can rental companies, mainly in wealthier areas, starting to specialize in exotic car rental. In fact even the regular airport car rental companies like Enterprise and Hertz are starting to rent out exotics or perhaps luxury cars along with the standard economy and touring cars.

For those who would like to try one out, you don’t need to fly out of town or go on a holiday, almost any special occasion will do. Maybe you want to knock the socks off your date or perhaps impress your wife on your anniversary. Yes, you can either show up at the door behind the wheel of a Lotus Espirit or a Porsche 911. And for those who feel like making their son or daughter’s prom a night to remember then forget about the limo; a sleek black Bentley will get them there in style.

Despite the fact that the exotic car rental is generally a little more expensive than renting a Camry at the airport, it’s at all times a lot more memorable. Besides exotic car rentals also make great gifts; as some rental agencies which rent exotics also rent classic cars, so you could give your dad or uncle the ride of his dreams in a vintage Corvette or brand new Ferrari. Sure, it will make a great gift instead of the usual set of gold clubs or tie clip that you were considering as an alternative!

Appreciating the Lincoln Mark VI

Appreciating the Lincoln Mark VI

For four whole model years, the Lincoln Mark VI lived fully. It was in production starting from the year 1980. Its time to shine on the roads and on the streets was cut short come 1983. The Lincoln Mark VI has been made available in two body styles that comprise of a coupe and a sedan. The coupe held two doors while on the other hand, the sedan held two doors more. The power source for this vehicle was a choice between two capable engines which were the 5.0 liter V8 engine and the 5.9 liter V8 engine. The Lincoln Mark VI was considered to be a part of the whole Lincoln Mark line of vehicles from the Ford Motor Company’s luxurious Lincoln division. In truth, this vehicle is more or less a carryover or a reskinned Lincoln Mark V.

Upon the introduction of the Lincoln Mark VI, the vehicle contained only very few changes as compared to its predecessor which was the Lincoln Mark V. In fact, most people noticed that the changes were only small and minor revisions in the design and style. Although people also noticed that the Lincoln Mark VI was crafted and manufactured to be slightly smaller than the vehicle which came before it. The most noticeable among all minor changes were the new headlight covers that the Lincoln Mark VI sported around. The vehicle also was a proud owner of a new steering wheel design. The hallmark opera windows that the Lincoln Mark V had were still continued in the Lincoln Mark VI. Along with these windows were the grille that held a Rolls Royce styling and design; and also the rear tire hump.

The changes made the Lincoln Mark VI look kind of awkward provide not much appeal, and thus it held not much appeal. However, this kind of styling and design has made Lincoln think of a project that would bring the vehicle in the limelight. What it did was it asked four designers to individually design and style a Lincoln Mark VI their way. This brought about popularity to the car. And along with that popularity came the reputation of being one of the most sought after vehicles for vehicle and car collectors.

At Lincoln Parts and Car Parts, one can find the store’s offering of a great selection of Lincoln auto parts, accessories, tools, and maintenance supplies like Lincoln Mark VI parts. Interesting parties, Lincoln owners, and aficionados could simply visit Lincoln Parts and Car Parts and they could easily access the huge selection and collection of Lincoln parts and accessories that include a/c condensers, catalytic converters, engine parts, exhaust manifold parts, fuel tanks, mirrors, and radiators among many others. The parts offered at Lincoln Parts and Car Parts are guaranteed to perfectly fit Lincoln vehicles. At Lincoln Parts and Car Parts, the Lincoln products have been manufactured from durable and quality materials.

Cadillac DTS: Reviving Cadillac Classics

Cadillac DTS: Reviving Cadillac Classics

The 2006 Cadillac DTS is another addition to the Cadillac brand. Cadillac, which is the brand that is very much associated and connected with luxury, is right on the path of reliving and reviving its products from the past. This new vehicle from Cadillac is a large luxury sedan that promises to provide an excellent performance, just like its ancestors did. It holds the styling that is simply and uniquely a Cadillac’s. It also boasts of a new interior, a much refined chassis tuning, as well as having the new NorthStar 4.6 liter V8 engine.

Not only sporting a new interior, the exterior holds such changes as well. This vehicle comes with a new front end sheet metal, grille, fascia, and some high intensity xenon headlamps. Added also to the 2006 Cadillac DTS is a new deck lid, a rear quarter, a rear fascia, and the light emitting diode (or LED) tail lamps. It also boasts of vertically shaped headlamps and tail lamps, an egg crate grille, and a dihedral shaped hood. The interior is very much clean and sculpted with a reliving of the past designs and added up with some contemporary refinement details as well. The new additions for the 2006 Cadillac DTS’ interior include dual firmness seats that have been purposely crafted and designed so as to provide comfort and support. There also are available real burl wood garnish, a lowered and more forward positioned instrument panel, spaciousness, a new analog clock, soft back urethane surfaces for the instrument panel and upper doors, and an integrated center stack design.

As per safety, the 2006 Cadillac DTS holds features that include dual front airbags, front side airbags, curtain side airbags, antilock four wheel disc brakes, a tire pressure monitor, wiper activated headlights, daytime running lights, and an emergency inside trunk release. The comfort and convenience features for this vehicle include the OnStar assistance system, air conditioning with tri-zone automatic controls including controls in the rear, an interior air filter, a power steering, a tilt steering wheel wrapped in leather and holds climate and radio controls, a cruise control, leather upholstery, an eight way power front bucket seats with lumbar adjustment, a center console, cup holders, a trunk pass-through, heated mirrors with turn signals, power windows, power door locks, a remote keyless entry system, a remote engine start, an AM/FM/CD/MP3 player, an analog clock, a tachometer, a trip computer, illuminated front visor mirrors, variable-intermittent wipers, a rear defogger, an automatic day and night rearview mirror, a compass, map lights, automatic headlights, and floor mats.

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Convertible Incredible

What can be more appealing than driving a convertible? Convertible sports cars, with their sleek and sophisticated looks, are much in demand in the market. For someone who is hoping to snag his own top-down, here are some of the models he needs to consider:

1. 2005 BMW Z4

Sure, this baby is expensive – hey, it’s a BMW – but its dynamics and features pretty much explain the price. This German sports car makes a statement as it speedily cruises along the highway.

2. 2005 Audi TT

High-performance, power-engined and invigorating, the 2005 Audi TT always garners an excellent rating in car reviews. With its awesome windscreen, roll hoops and headlamps, the driver cannot go wrong with this one.

3. 2005 Chevrolet Corvette

Over time, Chevrolet Corvette has proven itself with its remarkable power. Now in its sixth generation, the 2005 Chevrolet Corvette is smaller than its older counterparts, but better. With a horsepower of 400, it can go from zero to 60 mph per hour in four seconds. Unbelievable! This makes the Corvette a staple in any summer.

4. 2005 Lexus SC 430

The Lexus SC 430 is inspired by, no less than, the French Riviera. This car can go from coupe to a raging roadster in a span of 25 seconds. It is stylish, glamorous and powerful.

5. 2005 Mazda Miata

This model is pretty affordable for its look and power. This is very dependable and dynamic and it will knock the driver ‘off his feet’. With its reactive suspension and immense horsepower, this convertible sports car is one for the books.

6. 2005 Volkswagen New Beetle

Charming and cute like any other Beetle, this monster-engined convertible promises an adventurous ride on those lazy summer afternoons.

7. Jaguar XK8 Convertible

Great design, awesome interior, and technologically-advanced, this convertible can bring out the best in every driver. Its speed can go up to 155 mph per hour and the acceleration? Zerp – 60 mph in just 6.7 seconds. Now that’s truly incredible!

8. 2006 Cadillac XLR

This is a top-of-the-line convertible sports car, which promises “capacity like no other.” It is almost $78,000 but who cares? This is probably the best in the market now.

9. 2005 Chrysler Crossfire Roadster

Test drive this car and see that it is more amazing than its previous version.

All these convertible sports cars are undeniably worth the money and the effort to maintain them.

A Peek Into 2007 Hybrid Vehicles

Hybrid vehicles have become more popular in the past few years, as drivers are constantly trying to find ways to save on gas costs. Pump prices have rocketed especially after the Iraq war in 2003, as the flow of oil supplies was disrupted. Ever since that year, gas remains expensive and continues to rise due to market turbulence, high demand and conflicts in the Middle East.

Is 2007 the year to jump on the bandwagon for hybrid vehicles? Consider that using hybrid technology will be more expensive compared to purchasing a standard vehicle. Some of the top vehicle makers have already released an impressive line of hybrid vehicles for 2007 that will likely make car buyers scamper to showrooms similar to bored wives going to a mall sale.

The 2007 Toyota Camry Hybrid

Updated for 2007, the Toyota Camry Hybrid is a 4-door sedan that can carry 5 passengers. This hybrid vehicle is powered by a standard I4, 2.4-liter hybrid engine boasting of 192-horspeower. This hybrid vehicle achieves 43-mpg in city driving and 37-mpg on highway drives. The Camry has automatic transmission and overdrive is standard.

Initial Impressions

The 2007 Toyota Camry Hybrid has been lauded for its impressive interior and consumption. However, many users have complained that consumption struggles to achieve as what is advertised by the company. Some even say that this vehicle only achieves 34mpg maximum.

Toyota has pulled out all the stops for this hybrid vehicle but it comes with a price, and expensive at that. Sold at an average of $29,000 in showrooms across the US. This vehicle is a nice option for those that do not want to scrimp on luxury but save on gas.

2007 Ford Escape Hybrid

A hit vehicle in 2006 that just got better for 2007. The 2007 Ford Escape is a 4-door sport-utility vehicle that can carry a maximum of five passengers. This hybrid vehicle comes in two trims, the 4WD and FWD.

This SUV hybrid is powered by a I4, 2.3-liter, 155-horsepower engine. Can achieve 36-mpg in city driving and 31-mpg in highway driving. Both trims come with transmission is variable speed automatic.

Initial impressions

A favorite among vehicle critics, the 2007 Ford Escape Hybrid for its Interior Space, Fuel Economy, GPS, and Comfort. Fuel Economy is outstanding and most consumers supposedly achieve 35 mpg, which is just below the advertised 36 mpg. However, attaining this type of performance will rely on the skills and behavior of the driver. 2007 might be the year Ford reclaims its dominance in the SUV market with the new Ford Escape.

2007 Mercury Mariner Hybrid

Looking to extend its great run in 2006, Mercury has updated the Mariner Hybrid for 2007. This vehicle only comes in one trim, the 4WD. This hybrid vehicle is powered by an I4, 2.3-liter, 133-horsepower hybrid engine. This vehicle can achieve 33-mpg in city driving and 29-mpg if cruising on the highway.

2007 Lexus GS 450h

All-new for 2007, the Lexus GS 450h is the hybrid that will propel the company in the new year. This hybrid vehicle is a 4-door luxury sedan and comes only in one trim, the Sedan.

The 450h is powered by a standard V6, 3.5-liter, V6, 339-horsepower hybrid engine. This hybrid vehicle can achieve 28-mpg in city driving and 28-mpg when cruising on the highway.

Initial impressions

The 2007 Lexus GS 450h has been lauded for having the best interiors around. Gas mileage is supposedly revolutionary and performance is comparable to the BMW M3.

Audi A4: From Passat and Back

Sometimes an automaker will introduce a vehicle based upon the platform of a “lesser” model. Typically, this plan is employed when costs need to be cut to realize real savings. The theory is that the shared platform can be tweaked enough to distinguish the upscale model from the ordinary one. Add in leather, a taut suspension, and upgraded powerplant options and you can probably pull it off. For Audi, the introduction of the all-new Audi A4 during the mid1990s allowed the German automaker to capitalize on the success of the Volkswagen Passat, a midsize car from its European cousin. The plan worked, but it was only a temporary move. Let’s take a look at the Audi A4 and its surge to the top of German automotive excellence.

For years, the Audi 80 defined the smaller cars in Audi’s line up. By the early 1990s, the aging model was in need of updating and the name itself would need to be changed with the two digit alphanumeric model designation recently adopted by Audi. Cost pressures, however, made the development of an all-new from-the-ground-up model impossible. Instead, Audi tapped Volkswagen and based the original Audi A4 upon the successful VW Passat.

Platform sharing has been common amongst automakers for generations. General Motors regularly spreads it platforms across brand lines while Toyota and Honda have learned that their respective Lexus and Acura luxury makes could share much with their high quality and successful standard brands.

Still, the wheels of autodom are always turning and the original Audi A4 is now in its fourth generation and is built on its own platform. Indeed, the newest Audi A4 shares nothing with its VW cousin and is poised squarely to do battle with the BMW 3 Series, Mercedes C Class, the Volvo S60, and Cadillac’s Swedish built BLS.

So, what does today’s Audi A4 owners get for the money? Quite a lot! Read on:

A choice of three models including a sedan, a wagon, and a cabriolet

Two engine choices: a 2.0L I4 and a robust 3.2L V6

Front wheel drive or Quattro all wheel drive

A plethora of transmission choices including manual, automatic, and manumatic shifters

Major safety initiatives including power assisted safety restraints, head and side air bags, antilock brakes

12 way power seat for the driver

Leather, aluminum, and clothe appointments

Premium 10 speaker sound system

16 inch, 5 spoke alloy wheels

Base prices start around $28,000 for the sedan and climb to just over $37,000 for the cabriolet; all prices are slightly lower than competing models from Mercedes and BMW.

Fortunately for Audi A4 lovers, the German automaker isn’t holding still and plans for a fifth generation Audi A4 are underway. The newest model may switch to rear wheel drive and a coupe is receiving serious scrutiny. Regardless of the final decisions, Audi A4 owners know that their favored model will keep up with the competition. This is great news for those wanting a car incorporating German engineering without the Mercedes or BMW price tag.