THE DRIVE with Alan Taylor | Episode #330
Performance, utility, and economy – automotive manufacturers are going above and beyond to exceed consumer expectations. We begin with the perfect example: automotive journalist, George Kennedy, shares his drive experience in the astounding 2018 Kia Stinger GT. With Brembo brakes and a V6 twin-turbocharged engine, Kia’s reputation as a ‘discount car company’ is a thing of the past. George also touches on Ford’s decision to cut most of their sedans, believing they may have been a bit shortsighted. Automotive journalist, BJ Killeen, also offers insight on Ford’s sedan decision after a recent stop at a red light had her surrounded by only trucks and SUVs. Shifting gears, BJ sounds off about her test drive of the 290-HP, 3.5L V6 Lexus RX 350L. While she enjoyed many aspects of this ride, such as the fit and finish and handling, she had a few points that Lexus could improve on with the future models. Next, we catch up with Karl Brauer who calls from the inside of an Acura NSX on his way to the 2018 Drive Towards a Cure “California Adventure”, a charitable event benefiting for Parkinson’s research. Karl pits his 2006 Ford GT against the super handling AWD of the Acura NSX in a surprising review. Then, Luke Schneider, CEO of Silvercar, explains his rental car app which was recently acquired by Audi. Through the app, customers are able to effortlessly rent an Audi A4 or Q5 for an all-inclusive fee ranging from $59-$79 a day. (Yes, all of the rentals are all silver.) Lastly, we catch up with Chris Duke celebrates the 10th anniversary of Motorz TV, announces a brand new episode featuring Alan’s Dodge Demon, and discusses the close of National Car Care Month. Plus, as the ambassador of GM’s BuyPower Card, Chris tells us of the surveys they have been conducting with the help of their patrons. Tune in now to pump your mind full of the latest automotive knowledge!
- [00:00:00] 2018 Kia Stinger GT
- [00:06:28] Disprove Discount Reputation
- [00:12:30] Ford’s Shortsighted Decision
- [00:19:51] 2018 Lexus RX 350L
- [00:29:18] Impressive Small SUVs
- [00:35:53] Ford Copyrights “Maverick” Again
- [00:42:13] Drive Toward a Cure
- [00:48:38] Acura NSX vs Ford GT
- [00:54:44] Silvercar – Rent Audi A4 or Q5
- [01:02:05] 10th Anniversary of Motorz TV
- [01:11:27] DIY Automotive Repair
- [01:18:06] Check Your Manual Before You Wrench
Discover more about segments and guests below…
[00:00:00] 2018 Kia Stinger GT
It’s time to get blown away by the unexpected swing of a well-known manufacturer. Automotive journalist, George Kennedy, just stepped into one for the first time and he deems that the Kia Stinger GT is no doubt a game changer for the company. With the help of a BMW performance engineer and Audi designer, this four-door sports car evokes the idea of a grand touring, luxury coupe. This is a performance car that looks slightly more obtainable than a higher end ride but can definitely give many pricey rides a run for their money. The Stinger may be just the performance machine you need, that won’t break the bank.
[00:06:28] Disprove Discount Reputation
Sometimes an automotive manufacturer brings a car to their line-up that changes the course of the company’s future. The 2018 Kia Stinger GT aims to disprove the company’s discount reputation and automotive journalist, George Kennedy, tells us why they have done just that. A twin-turbo V6 engine makes 365-HP, 376-lb ft of torque, 0-60 in 4.4 seconds, and its huge Brembo brakes take this baby from 60-0 in no time flat. This AWD machine has a base price of $31,900 and if you step all the way up to the GT 2, you’re looking at somewhere in the neighborhood of $52,000. George notes that $52,000 for a Kia might stop some buyers in their tracks but he assures us that this car more than lives up to the hype. Explore more about the 2018 Kia Stinger GT.
[00:12:30] Ford’s Shortsighted Decision
The Ford Motor Company recently released the news that they would be killing off five or their seven sedans. Automotive journalist, George Kennedy, explains that he feels this may have been too drastic a move for Ford. He also states that they may have done it to improve their stock; after seeing sales figures the stocker holders may see the cuts as a positive maneuver. We can’t help but also wonder what will happen to Lincoln. George tells us that they are positioned well enough with the introduction of their new SUVs to service the sedan slashing. The MKZ may cease to exist but George thinks that the Continental is their niche car and doesn’t believe they will cut that one. Is cutting off the production of the everyman car a good move for OEMs?
[00:19:51] 2018 Lexus RX 350L
SUVs are on the rise and automotive journalist, BJ Killeen, recently took an enjoyable test drive in the 2018 Lexus RX 350L. She starts off by raving about Lexus’ exceptional customer service and impeccable fit and finish. This luxury, crossover SUV has a 3.5L V6 engine, pushes 290-HP and 263-lb ft of torque, and houses an 8-speed transmission. Its price starts at $52,685 and the as-driven luxury trim was $61,000. The only downsides that BJ noticed were that the hands-free power liftgate was not a standard feature and there was not enough room in the third row. While there are some improvements that the RX 350L need, BJ shares that she is sure they are still selling well. We are living in the time of SUVs – which one is the one for you?
[00:29:18] Impressive Small SUVs
Technology is standard in all new vehicles and it’s important for OEMs to keep up on the latest additions to our cruising machines. Automotive journalist, BJ Killeen, had the chance to drive the Lexus RX 350L, and unfortunately, they are not exactly keeping up technology wise. While the safety features are all there, this SUV doesn’t come with the standard Apple Car Play or Android Auto. It also had a beautiful 12.3-inch display screen but was controlled by a mouse on the center console that you had to look down at to use. BJ tells us that she is sure Lexus is working hard to correct this for future vehicles. As for fuel economy, it wasn’t terrible for a V6 engine – 19-city and 26-highway. Explore more about the Lexus RX 350L.
[00:35:53] Ford Copyrights “Maverick” Again
There used to be a trick that former head of pickuptrucks.com, Mike Levine, used to do and automotive journalist, BJ Killeen, tells us that it is still around. Mike used to go down to the copyright office and try to get a heads up on things that were coming down the line for OEMs. Recently, someone took the same approach and after some research, it seems that the names Maverick and Timberline have been registered to Ford. Is Ford bringing back the Maverick? Is the Timberline a new truck heading our way? What does the future hold for the blue oval?
[00:42:13] Drive Toward a Cure
Executive Publisher of Kelley Blue Book, Karl Brauer, joins us from inside an Acura NSX on his way to Drive Toward a Cure “California Adventure” which benefits Parkinson’s. He shares his first impressions from behind the wheel of this silver beauty. This has now become a historic car for the brand and the designers have helped it age gracefully. Karl’s favorite part about this performance monster is the Super Handling AWD – which extends to all four wheels at a time and can actually send more power to whichever wheel needs it. Even after all these years, the designers keep making this car a blast to drive.
[00:48:38] Acura NSX vs. Ford GT
Can you picture cruising in a ride that has a price range anywhere between $150,000-160,000? Well, Karl Brauer of Kelley Blue Book called us from a real-time test drive of an Acura NSX, which he got to commandeer for the Drive Toward a Cure “California Adventure”. This car is equipped with three electric motors plus an internal combustion V6 and this amazing combination makes the NSX just as capable as any modern supercar. Alan poses the difficult question to Karl – his precious Ford GT or the Acura NSX? Karl tells us that the driving the GT, with no computer systems, is more engaging from a pure experiential stance but the NSX would destroy his GT on the track with its confident and refined performance. These rides are widely available, all you must do is simply call up your Acura dealer. Find out why Karl felt giddy driving the NSX at its press launch.
[00:54:44] Silvercar – Rent Audi A4 or Q5
We all know that traveling can be stressful enough but there is now an app that can make renting a car a piece of cake. It’s now possible to rent an Audi A4 or Q5 for just $59-$79 a day. The Silvercar app, brought to you by CEO Luke Schneider, says that the app essentially solves two major problems – never knowing what car you are going to get and saving the hassle of standing in line and grueling paperwork. Audi loved his app so much that they bought it and now there are 21 different locations to rent through them. You simply download the app and reserve your car fully equipped for one reasonable fee. They’ve even made it possible for your phone to unlock the car once you arrive, so you don’t have to wait in line to get the keys. Oh, and did we mention, the Audis are all silver? Learn more about this affordable car rental option now.
[01:02:05] 10th Anniversary of Motorz TV
May 09, 2018 marks the 10 year anniversary of Motorz TV and Chris Duke is excited to tell us all about the newest episode. It is an educational episode about rotating tires and Alan even brings his Demon out to play. Chris explains that April was National Car Care Month and so the episode also features safety precautions, tool information, and skilled techniques. Chris and Alan pay tribute to Craftsman tools and allude to the fact that there is a big surprise coming from the company that DIYers have known and loved for years. Tune in for more on Motorz TV.
[01:11:27] DIY Automotive Repair
The weather is getting nice and it’s time to get your car out and work on it. Chris Duke, Host of Motorz TV, is the ambassador for General Motors’ BuyPower reward card and he shares about a survey they recently released. It turns out that 90% of the people they asked don’t work on their own vehicles. He assumes that it is because vehicles are getting more technologically advanced. It turns out that some people don’t even know that you can’t jump a new car with jumper cables because it will short out the computers. Join us for more as Chris demystifies DIY car care.
[01:18:06] Check the Manual Before You Wrench
You can work on your own car! Chris Duke, Host of Motorz TV, explains that with mechanic rates on the rise, it’s time for people to remember what it is like to wrench on their own car. Mechanics are charging anywhere from $100-$125 an hour and they get to charge you the book rate on whatever the job is, even if it takes them less than the estimated time. Paying retail for the part through the mechanic is expensive as well and it may be possible to do something yourself for a small portion of the cost. With the perfect Craftsman tool and the manufacturers (or Haynes manual) for your car or, you can get the job done right. Make sure you do your research and get the right parts for the right ride, but it is possible to do it yourself. You can tune into Motorz TV episodes or the numerous YouTube videos out there for help. It’s time to get out your toolbox and lift your hood.
Explore More with Helpful Links:
- Contributor: BJ Killeen | Automotive Journalist
- Contributor: Karl Brauer | Executive Publisher, Kelley Blue Book
- Guest: George Kennedy | Automotive Journalist, Boston Globe
- Guest: Luke Schneider | CEO, Silvercar
- Vehicle: 2018 Kia Stinger GT
- Vehicle: 2018 Lexus RX 350 L
- Event: Drive Toward a Cure 2018 “California Adventure”
- Program Host: Alan Taylor
- Producer: Dave Milligan
- Production Assistant: Joanne Bolden
- Audio Engineer: Dave Milligan
- Copy Editor: Jess Baumgardner
Our Sponsors & Supported Charities:
- Austin Hatcher Foundation
- Foundation of Human Understanding
- Go RVing
- Haynes Automotive Manuals
- Patriot Outreach
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About THE DRIVE with Alan Taylor
THE DRIVE with Alan Taylor puts you in the driver’s seat for a unique, fast paced look at today’s automotive industry. This is your pedal-to-the-metal, two-hour thrill ride devoted to the latest car news and test-drive results, how-to tips car maintenance tips, auto show coverage, expert insights and behind-the-scenes race day action. Don’t miss exclusive interviews with top auto executives, athletes, celebrities and prominent newsmakers from around the world.