First Drive

2019 Audi A7 Sportback First Drive

2019 Audi A7 Sportback First Drive

While SUVs may seem the darlings of the automotive industry right now, there's definitely plenty of room to innovate and wow the crowd in other segments: especially when you have a long list of new things to show off, like Audi. While the 2019 A8 represents the marque's vision for sedans, the 2019 A7 Sportback embodies Audi's vision for those buyers who demand a sportier sedan. The A7, however, is not one that can be confined and defined inside a rigid box. Instead, it takes inspiration from both past and present, and in the process embracing coupe, sedan, and even wagon in a single body.

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2019 Jeep Cherokee First Drive: More than just a new face

2019 Jeep Cherokee First Drive: More than just a new face

SUVs are one of the fastest growing segments in the automotive industry, which makes now the best time to put one’s best SUV foot forward. Jeep, a name more associated with offroad vehicles, broke into the SUV market with the Cherokee as far back as the 70s. But as it expanded its portfolio, adding the luxury Grand Cherokee to its roster, the Cherokee seemed to have gotten left out of the massive changes, the grand innovations, and the big splashes. And so for 2019, Jeep is giving the SUV a much-needed pampering, giving the Cherokee a new face, a new interior, and a new powertrain, all while keeping it an unmistakable part of the Jeep family.

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2018 Jaguar E-PACE First Drive: The crossover cub

2018 Jaguar E-PACE First Drive: The crossover cub

The world may have embraced the practical charms of the SUV but, as the 2018 Jaguar E-PACE demonstrates, there’s still room for experimentation when you’re building a compact crossover. Second in the automaker’s SUV line-up, and arriving just ahead of the all-electric Jaguar I-PACE, the new 2018 E-PACE is an unusually thoughtful take in a segment jam-packed with options. Indeed, a whole lot more thought has gone into the E-PACE than the tiny footprint might suggest.

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The 2018 Lamborghini Huracan Performante doesn’t want to kill you

The 2018 Lamborghini Huracan Performante doesn’t want to kill you

"Don't crash." Two simple words, but with a lot of emphasis when you're talking about the brand new 2018 Lamborghini Huracan Performante. The line-up of professional drivers responsible for coaxing faster and faster lap times - not to mention more and more trophies for the automaker's awards cabinet - currently facing me does nothing to disabuse the knowledge that, on a track, I'm a novice at best. Suddenly, the idea of planting a raging $280k supercar into a wall seems all too possible.

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2018 Mercedes-Benz S Class first drive: From Maybach to S65 AMG

2018 Mercedes-Benz S Class first drive: From Maybach to S65 AMG

The Mercedes-Benz S Class represents the commitment to build the best car in the world, so you can't accuse the German automaker of having low ambitions. Then again, with more than four million sales of the "Sonderklasse" - or "Special Class" - and its variants under its belt since 1972, it seems there's a market out there for obsessive attention to detail and a price tag to match. That makes the 2018 S Class line-up not only important to Mercedes-Benz, but to the industry as a whole.

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2018 BMW M5 First Drive: V8 and AWD for the most advanced M-car

2018 BMW M5 First Drive: V8 and AWD for the most advanced M-car

There’s a war brewing. In the world of the all-wheel drive, best-of-the-best performance sedan, a new challenge approaches. Watching, warily from the corners is the 2017 Audi RS7 Performance, with its massive 605 hp and 553 lb-ft of torque. Then there’s the 6,000-pound elephant in the room, the Mercedes-AMG E 63 S, with its 603 hp and faintly ridiculous 627 lb-ft of torque. Each is a stellar performer, and each has some big new competition. The new 2018 BMW M5 is here, and I’ve been testing it on and off the track.

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2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC63 S 4MATIC+ First Drive: SUV royalty

2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC63 S 4MATIC+ First Drive: SUV royalty

When money is no object, and you feel the need for attention on the school run, the 2018 Mercedes-AMG GLC 63 SUV with its handcrafted 4.0-liter V8 biturbo engine is the ultimate midsize SUV for the family. If you can't make it first in the line for school pick-up with a 0-60 mph time of 3.9 seconds - thanks to 469 HP and 479 lb.-ft of torque - then there's something wrong. All that power starts right at 1,750 rpm, too, so hold on tight the moment your lead foot hits the gas pedal, because that’s some serious grunt for a family hauler.

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2018 Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo First Drive: A rocket not a wagon

2018 Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo First Drive: A rocket not a wagon

Whatever you do, please don’t call the new 2018 Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo a station wagon. Even describing it as a hatchback is off-limits. I can understand why you might be tempted, since the roofline is ever so slightly stretched in order to accommodate a smaller fifth passenger. But this is not your grandfather's wagon, not least because - and I know I'm not the only one to think this way - the second-gen Panamera is absolutely gorgeous to look at. That means, even if I have to call it a "five-door sedan with a lift-back," I'm prepared to declare that the Panamera's "Sport Turismo" variant is one of the sleekest, most beautiful and luxurious ways to get around today. All for just $6,000 more than the regular car.

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2019 Audi A8 First Drive: The new luxury

2019 Audi A8 First Drive: The new luxury

"Vorsprung durch Technik" doesn't translate to "know your place, human," but in the case of the 2019 Audi A8 it probably should. Fourth generation of the luxury sedan, it's the most technologically advanced, gadget-packed iteration to-date, paving the way for Audi's autonomous driving future among a host of other "firsts". While the new A8 won't find its way to US shores until fall 2018, Audi invited us to get an early preview - I just didn't expect to have a crisis of identity while I was there.

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2018 Honda Accord first drive: No more bland

2018 Honda Accord first drive: No more bland

I know what you’re thinking: “It’s a Honda Accord. Skip to the mileage estimates and whether or not there’s room for a car seat in the back, and then we’re done here, Mr. Automotive Writer Guy.”

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2018 Aston Martin DB11 V8 first-drive: The driver’s GT

2018 Aston Martin DB11 V8 first-drive: The driver’s GT

First the bad news: just because Aston Martin is adding a V8 engine to the DB11 lineup, doesn’t mean that the car is much more affordable, just in case you’ve been holding out. Indeed, if price is important to you, then might I divert your attention to the 2018 Lexus LC 500 instead. The V8-powered DB11 is on an entirely different level, distinguishing itself intriguingly when compared to the driving dynamics and characteristics of the 600 horsepower V12 DB11 we drove earlier this year.

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2018 Lexus LS 500 First Drive: The luxury of identity

2018 Lexus LS 500 First Drive: The luxury of identity

If it's usually your thirties when you discover your real identify, you could argue the 2018 Lexus LS 500 and LS 500h are ahead of schedule. The fifth-generation of the automaker's flagship luxury sedan arrives just before the car's thirtieth birthday, promising more refinement, more technology, and - arguably most important - more character. If the original LS defined Lexus as a luxury upstart in 1989, the new LS finally sees the automaker come to terms with its Japanese roots.

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