Beginning our show is George Kennedy III – is a co-founder of, and the Vice President of the New England Motor Press Association. He contributes to U.S. News & World Report, CarGurus, Forbes Wheels, and here on The Drive. George is driving the new 2024 Jeep 4xE, a plug-in hybrid with 375 horsepower and 470 LB feet of torque. The electric boost allows for low-speed cruising on the trail using the electric power. The four by E Wrangler plug in hybrid is expensive but has great fuel efficiency, towing capacity, and power outlets. It allows owners to test out electric driving and become familiar with the charging process. This can make it easier for them to transition to an electric vehicle in the future. George also was impressed with the 2024 Honda Ridgeline comes with a V6 3.5 liter 280 horsepower powertrain, which is the same as the one used in almost all vehicles in the Honda lineup. This engine has enough power to handle towing and is well-paired with the chassis. It is great to have a V6 engine in a vehicle this size, as a turbo 4 might struggle without the perfect transmission tuning. The starting price of the Honda Ridgeline is around $38,000, which is slightly higher than the average for small trucks, but this vehicle stands apart from the rest.

Brian Moody, Executive Editor of Auto and, explains that a software-defined vehicle is a car that can add new features or functionality through software updates without additional hardware upgrades. IBM is one of the companies leading the way in this field. Building a software-defined vehicle requires creating an infrastructure that includes cloud computing, artificial intelligence, and data interactions with the car. Without the software or the operating system in place, the car won’t work. In other news, General Motors is one of the companies in the running to build the lunar terrain vehicle as the US plans to return to the moon by 2030. The new Hummer electric vehicle may have solar panels, and GM’s altium platform may play a part in this. The recent New York auto show showcased some interesting new car concepts, including the new Nissan Kicks and the new Genesis concept car. Brian compared Ford Explorer and Mazda CX-90 and concluded that Mazda CX-90 is impressive overall in terms of ride handling, interior materials, exterior look, color choices, and technology. Both cars start under $40,000, and the Mazda CX-90 has a straight six engine and all-wheel drive as standard, which is quite impressive.

In a recent interview with automotive journalist Steven Cole Smith, it was revealed that the Chevrolet Corvette ZR1 is set to make a return. Although it has not been officially confirmed by Chevrolet, it is expected to arrive this summer with around 850 horsepower. This is set to make it the fastest Corvette until the rumored Zora arrives, which is rumored to have a whopping 1000 horsepower. The Zora has not been officially confirmed by Chevrolet, but there is a lot of speculation surrounding its release. Steven  discusses the upcoming Long Beach Grand Prix race and notes that there won’t be any Corvette racing, as the GT Daytona cars with non-professional drivers are on the lineup. The aim is to keep the field small because the track is tight, with a length of barely a mile and a half. Stephen also mentions that a total of 27 cars will be racing, including prototypes and various sports cars. The Martinsville race, a NASCAR event held on a small track in Virginia, has a history of nearly 50 years. Another popular NASCAR event is the Talladega race. Recently, Rick Hendrick and Hendrick Motorsports were recognized for their victory at this race four decades ago, which helped establish their reputation. At the time, Hendrick had no sponsorship and only one race left to prove himself. Against all odds, his team emerged victorious, earning him a $50,000 sponsorship. This marked the beginning of Hendrick Motorsports, which has since grown into a thriving car company and dealership.

Lauren Fix -Editor-In-Chief of, closes the show with Alan as she discusses how electric vehicle charging stations are vulnerable to cyber-attacks that could compromise sensitive information. Charging stations connected to the internet may not have proper firewalls in place to protect against attacks. Public charging stations that require payment could also be vulnerable to skimming devices. It’s important for electric vehicle owners to be cautious and take appropriate measures to protect their information. Lauren has also recently test-driven the new Toyota 4Runner, which has been around for 40 years and has a loyal following. There are seven different trim levels, including the TRD Pro, Trail Hunter, and Platinum Edition. The vehicle comes with two hybrid engine options – a turbocharged 2.4 liter 4-cylinder engine and the I-Force Max engine, which is paired with a 48 horsepower electric motor. The Trail Hunter is designed for deep water and has a full skin plate underneath, rubber floor mats, and gold accents in the interior. One unique feature of the Trail Hunter is the 20 inch LED light bar across he front from Rigid and Rigid fog lights. It can tow up to 6,000 pounds and rides on 33 inch Toyo all-terrain tires. Lauren is impressed with the hybrid option for the 4Runner and also mentioned that the new Land Cruiser is also hybrid. She thinks it’s a brilliant move and hopes that more vehicles will follow suit.

[00:00:00] – Contributor George Kennedy III
[00:07:33] – 2024 Jeep Wrangler 4xe
[00:13:00] – 2024 Honda Ridgeline
[00:20:51] – Contributor Brian Moody
[00:30:22] – Concept Cars
[00:37:21] – Mazda X-90
[00:44:11] – Contributor Stephen Cole Smith
[00:51:24] – GT Daytona
[00:57:10] – Martinsville Race
[01:05:00] – Contributor Lauren Fix
[01:15:50] – 2024 Toyota 4Runner
[01:21:30] – I Spy!


Host: Alan Taylor
Producer: Dave Milligan
Copy Editor: Colleen Mahi

Contributor: George Kennedy III

Contributor: Brian Moody

Contributor: Stephen Cole Smith

Contributor: Lauren Fix

  • Contributor: Brian Moody | Executive Editor of Auto and Forbes Wheels, and here on The Drive
  • Contributor: Lauren Fix | Editor-In-Chief,
  • Contributor:  George Kennedy| Co-founder of, and the Vice President of the New England Motor Press Association. He contributes to U.S. News & World Report, CarGurus, Forbes Wheels, and here on The Drive.
  • Contributor: Stephen Cole Smith | Editor in-Chief for Car Coach Reports.

Vehicles Discussed:

2024 Jeep Wrangler 4xe, 2024 Honda Ridgeline, Ford Explorer, Mazda CX90, Chevrolet Corvette ZR1, 2024 Toyota 4Runner


Austin Hatcher Foundation
Foundation of Human Understanding

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