October 19, 2015 |
Lexus was the first automaker to field a luxury crossover SUV when it came out with the midsize RX model 17 years ago. But it was hardly at the front of the line with the NX, its belated entry in the red-hot small-crossover segment. The compact NX was a brand-new vehicle for the 2015 model year and will continue as a carryover for 2016. I had an opportunity earlier to drive the gas-engine-powered NX, the 200t. This time I spent a week with the hybrid version, the 300h. The hybrid gets significantly better mileage than the turbo-encouraged 200t and its sportier variant, the F model.
September 7, 2015 |
The average price of gasoline at the end of last month was about $2.60 a gallon - the cheapest petrol has been in late August since 2004, according to AAA's national survey. "Prices should continue to fall this autumn due to declining demand and the switchover to winter-blend gasoline," the auto club added. Cheap gas has, on average, saved American motorists $750 a year. It also has triggered wholesale desertions from what had been the growing ranks of the Hybrid Owners' Army. And in what numbers are these HOA troops going AWOL?
August 28, 2015 |
Dressed in navy blue polo shirts and dragging backpacks behind them, the first graders in Christina Gonzalez's class filed into their classroom quietly for their first day at North Camden's Molina Elementary School. There were a few nervous tears, there was some talking, and because of registration glitches, a few students did not yet have name tags on their coat hooks. Otherwise, it looked like any other day. "I am so excited to show you our classroom," Gonzalez said, herding the students gently into the room, decorated with cutout paper bees and colorful posters.
August 21, 2015 |
It's understating the case to call these last weeks of summer "stone-fruit season. " No. This is the real fruit season, the only fruit season. For anyone who cares about sweet and natural deliciousness, all the other weeks are merely prelude to the sticky, juicy days of August. "Stone fruits are a massive favorite for me," says Aimee Olexy of the Talula's triumvirate, "and I look forward to getting them every year. " Right now, white and yellow peaches are at their bursting peak; plums beckon with a lustrous gleam.
August 17, 2015 |
In the case of the Toyota Highlander Hybrid, you have to pay up front if you want to save at the pump - and wear an ecological white hat. The top-of-the-line hybrid I tested, the Limited Platinum AWD, had a base price of $49,990. That's $5,850 more than a comparable gas-engine model. What you get for those extra bucks is a substantial improvement in fuel economy. The conventionally powered counterpart to the tester has EPA mileage ratings of 18 city and 24 highway. The test car is rated at 27 city and 28 highway.
March 2, 2015 |
2015 Toyota Camry Hybrid SE Sedan: Redesigned for 2015. Price: $32,987 as tested (a base hybrid starts at $27,995, while a base Camry, $22,970). Among the more expensive options on the test vehicle were sunroof for $915, security system for $359, and remote start for $499. (For more about the $1,300 Entune Premium Audio, see "Play some tunes," below.) Marketer's pitch: The "Being a Dad" Super Bowl commercial. Sniffle. Conventional wisdom: Camrys are dad cars. Or mom cars. Not cool cars.
February 16, 2015 |
'Excuse me, Miss. Excuse me!" The New York City police officer down on Ludlow Street was tapping my window with the insistence of the law. "Oh boy," I thought. "Here we go again. " I had been idling for way too long, talking on the phone in what definitely could not be considered a parking spot - could not even really be considered a loading spot, if I were honest. I rolled down the window. "Yes, officer?" I asked. "This is the best looking car I have ever seen," he told me, smiling.
February 9, 2015 |
With lagging student test scores and only about 120 students in grades K-4, Spring City Elementary School three years ago looked more like a candidate for closure than for an extreme makeover. But with the boldness of a Silicon Valley venture capitalist, the Spring-Ford Area School District gambled on a radically different approach to fixing the struggling school near the border of Montgomery and Chester Counties. It spent roughly $300,000 over three years to arm students and their classrooms - even kindergartners - with the latest desktops, iPads, Apple TVs, and smartboards.
January 30, 2015 |
Years before anyone cared about kale and way before Brussels sprouts went viral, Tozer Seeds, the largest family-owned vegetable-breeding company in England, started playing around with the idea of producing a hybrid combination of the two. Called Flower Sprouts, they debuted in 2010 at a single department store, Marks & Spencer in London. By late 2014, the market had spread elsewhere in the U.K., Scandinavia and Europe, where sprouts' popularity dwarfs kale's. Now the American version from Tozer - under the brand name Kalettes, to cash in on our continuing obsession with all things kale - is available at Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, and other select supermarkets.
September 29, 2014 |
The same week Mr. Driver's Seat had his first-ever chance to get behind the wheel of the all-electric, new-for-2015 Volkswagen e-Golf, a message arrived in my inbox noting that electrified car sales - meaning electric vehicles and hybrids - are essentially flat for 2013 to 2014. Volkswagen will not be the only manufacturer joining the all-electric car race for this model year. Kia plans the Soul EV and Fiat the 500e for select markets in the near future, and Tesla is adding the Model X to the Model S. These new models join the Smart electric drive, Nissan Leaf, Ford Focus Electric, and Mitsubishi I-Miev.