2016 Hyundai Tucson gets new styling, efficiency and safety features

2016 Tucson

2016 Hyundai Tucson

 FOUNTAIN VALLEY, Calif. – Hyundai’s all-new 2016 Tucson compact crossover offers an unmatched combination of a modern design, enhanced driving dynamics, increased utility and the latest in safety and entertainment technologies, all with a starting price of $22,700. Hitting dealers later this month, the Tucson is ideally suited for today’s crossover buyers who are demanding a vehicle solution that fits seamlessly into their busy lifestyles. 

Tucson is available in four distinct trim levels, each with a compelling value proposition, offering a Tucson for different buyer preferences. Those include:

  • SE: Well-equipped, price-leading model including popular options
  • Eco: Affordable turbo model that delivers more power and improved fuel economy
  • Sport: Features sporty cues and driving dynamics
  • Limited: Luxury model with leather, advanced technology and other premium features

“The all-new Tucson hits the sweet spot of what consumers are looking for in a compact crossover with competitive pricing advantages at every trim level,” said Scott Margason, director, Product Planning, Hyundai Motor America. “For example, the Tucson SE has a MSRP advantage and averages $700 in additional content compared to its competitors in the class. As Tucson competes in one of the fastest growing and most competitive segments in the industry, we can’t wait for the 2016 Tucson to make its way to dealers in just a few short weeks.”


Model Engine Transmission Drivetrain MSRP

2.0L 4-Cylinder

6-Speed Automatic FWD $22,700

2.0L 4-Cylinder

6-Speed Automatic

AWD $24,100

1.6L Turbo 4-Cylinder

 7-Speed EcoShift Dual Clutch FWD $24,150
Eco  1.6L Turbo 4-Cylinder  7-Speed EcoShift Dual Clutch AWD $25,550

1.6L Turbo 4-Cylinder

 7-Speed EcoShift Dual Clutch FWD $26,150
Sport  1.6L Turbo 4-Cylinder

7-Speed EcoShift Dual Clutch

AWD $27,550

1.6L Turbo 4-Cylinder

7-Speed EcoShift Dual Clutch

FWD $29,900
Limited  1.6L Turbo 4-Cylinder

7-Speed EcoShift Dual Clutch

AWD $31,300

Freight charges for the 2016 Tucson are $895 and not included in the prices above.

Things aren’t what they appear dept: Used car market down 3.5%: Edmunds.com


Franchise dealers buck trend used car sales up 6% first half of 2013

CPO sales are up 12%; used SUV segment still surging


Despite TV ads that proclaim they need, want, desire your used ahem, pre-owned car,  sales of used cars for the first half of 2013 are down 3.4 percent according to the automotive website Edmunds.com.

According to Edmunds.com’s 2013 Q2 Used Car Market Report, 18,995,521 used cars were sold in the U.S. through the first six months of the year, down from 19,666,671 used cars sold during the same period in 2012.

Used, ahem, pre-owned sales from franchise dealers, however are up 6 percent while certified pre-owned sales (think those who bought, serviced and traded at a dealer or rolled over their leased vehicle for another or different ride) earning the moniker CPO (certified pre-owned) are up 12.5 percent in the first half of 2013.

“These trends suggest that the used car market continues to be driven by lease returns and vehicle trade-ins,” says Edmunds.com Director of Used Car Analysis Joe Spina. “And with franchise sales up 20 percent from the first quarter to the second quarter, it appears that franchise dealers’ used car sales are gaining momentum as the year progresses.”

Other highlights from Edmunds.com’s 2013 Q2 Used Car Market Report include:

  • Average used car prices at franchise dealerships are down $118 in the first half of 2013 to $15,986.
  • Hondas sold faster at franchise dealerships than any other used car brand in the second quarter; Lincolns sold the slowest.
  • The top-selling used vehicles by segment remained mostly unchanged in the second quarter. The two major exceptions: Ford Edge unseated Chevy Equinox in the midsize SUV segment and Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class knocked Lexus RX350 off the top perch among entry-level luxury SUVs.
  • Because hybrid vehicle leases increased in earnest in 2010, Edmunds.com expects a material increase in used hybrid inventories in the third quarter of this year. (Edmunds.com offers advice for car buyers looking to buy a used hybrid vehicle at http://www.edmunds.com/car-buying/tips-for-used-hybrid-car-shopping.html.)

Edmunds.com’s 2013 Q2 Used Car Market Report is available for free any time at http://www.edmunds.com/industry-center/data/used-car-market-quarterly-report-q2-2013.html.

Nissan Leaf 25,000 unit US sales mark falls

Another month, another auto maker crosses the finish line of another sales goal.
Nissan’s all-electric Leaf had its best sales month in March, and recorded a 423.5% increase year-over-year last April wile crossing the 25,000 unit sales threshold. The result, Nissan sayeth, it is the world’s best-selling electric vehicle.

“From the beginning our goal with LEAF has been to bring affordable, zero-emission transportation to the mass market in a practical, fun-to-drive package,” said Erik Gottfried, Nissan director of electric vehicle (EV) marketing and sales strategy. “With more than 25,000 LEAFs in the U.S. and 62,000 around the world, we’re seeing the adoption curve for EVs accelerate, and there is tremendous interest not only on the West Coast but in a number of new strongholds like Atlanta, Raleigh, Denver, Dallas, Chicago, St. Louis and many more.”

Nissan says LEAF sales have risen steadily since its launch with sales jumping several-fold in high-performing markets such as San Francisco—where LEAF was the top-selling vehicle for the Nissan brand in April—Los Angeles, Seattle, Portland and San Diego.

“Pioneering the EV trail with LEAF, we’ve had the opportunity to evaluate the purchase process of EV buyers. We have maintained an ongoing dialogue with our customers, and through that we’ve learned just how different the process is for buying a LEAF versus a traditional gas-powered car,” said Gottfried. “We’ve found that customers interested in LEAF come to the showroom exceptionally well educated about the product. Then post-purchase, they stay engaged with us, connect with the LEAF owner community and share their experience broadly, which drives greater interest in LEAF.”

“We’ve also learned how infrastructure plays a role in a consumer’s decision to go all-electric,” added Brendan Jones, Nissan’s director of EV infrastructure strategy and deployment. “We already knew that areas with a higher concentration of EVs would require more charging stations, but trends show that the reverse is also true—a more robust charging infrastructure generates greater interest in EVs and stimulates more EV driving among EV owners.”

Nissan continues to make progress with its commitment to enhance the charging infrastructure in the United States and since announcing plans earlier this year to triple the number of quick chargers from 200 to 600, Nissan and its charging partners already have installed about 50 additional units where interest in LEAF and EVs is highest.

“Nissan is taking a three-prong approach to bolster infrastructure by working with commercial charging partners to bring a variety of charging options to our customers, collaborating with businesses to encourage workplace charging on their campuses and engaging in pilots with our dealers to determine how to optimize the role they can play in EV infrastructure,” said Jones. “This enhanced infrastructure—particularly with more businesses offering workplace charging as an employee benefit—builds range confidence and gives EV drivers better end-to-end charging ability, meaning they can leave home fully charged, plug in at work and be charged when they leave.”

Nissan, which now assembles LEAF, its battery and its electric motor all in Tennessee, introduced the 2013 LEAF with more customer-focused features and an expanded range of trim levels to include a more attainable version and models with more premium amenities such as leather seats and BOSE energy-efficient audio.

U.S. pricing for the 2013 LEAF starts at $28,800 and depending on location, some consumers may get the vehicle for as low as $18,800 by qualifying for federal and state tax credits, making LEAF competitive with gas-powered vehicles of its size. Nissan LEAF currently may be leased for $199 per month with $1,999 down for 36 months. Learn more at www.NissanUSA.com/LEAF.

Dodge dishes on 2 Dart special edition packages

2013 Dodge Dart SXT Special Edition

2013 Dodge Dart SXT Special Edition

  • New Dart SXT and Limited model “Special Edition” Packages and new Rallye
  • Appearance Group make ordering popular class-exclusive Dart features a snap
  • New Dart SXT Special Edition package includes a black cross-hair grille, projector fog lamps, leather-wrapped steering wheel, cruise control, Bluetooth and class-exclusive features, including dark-tinted projector headlamps, LED racetrack tail lamps, integrated dual exhaust and front passenger seat in-seat storage for a U.S. Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price (MSRP) of just $595
  • New Rallye Appearance Group lets buyers customize their Dart SXT Special Edition and includes a unique dark front fascia, Rallye badge and class-exclusive 17-inch Hyper Black aluminum wheels for a U.S. MSRP of $395
  • New Dart Limited Special Edition package adds a power sunroof, heated front seats, heated steering wheel, dual zone automatic temperature control, SiriusXM Satellite Radio and class-exclusive features, including LED racetrack tail lamps, premium Nappa leather seats and Garmin Navigation on the 8.4-inch touch screen for a U.S. MSRP of just $1,810
  • Dart continues to build awareness – it has recorded five consecutive month-over-month sales records to date
  • Dart attracts the youngest demographic in the compact car segment; 60 percent of buyers are new to the Chrysler Group
  • Dodge Dart tops compact car segment in total quality, according to Strategic Vision Total Quality Index
I’ve not been a fan of “special editions” in the past because they usually add a few different seat cloth selections, three different hubcaps, a spoiler on the trunk (now called the rear deck lid), a few more spiffs on the instrument panel and a higher price tag. Sometimes car makers did create a more fun to drive, kick in the pants ride for the extra greenbacks they pulled from your wallet. Other times, it was simply perfume on a slow-selling pig.
Dodge has announced what appears to be a clear departure from past history with three models of its 2013 Dart with two special edition packages and one Rallye Appearance Group.
More importantly, the prices of these packages are quite reasonable and the listing of equipment is extensive and real. It seems that Dodge has gone out of its way to truly add value to a customer’s purchase.

“These new Dodge Dart Special Edition packages show how we’re listening to our customers,” said Tim Kuniskis, President and CEO, Dodge Brand. “Since we launched the all-new Dart last June, we’ve been able to see how customers are ordering their Darts, and as a result, we have simplified our offerings to meet their requests – allowing us to offer them an even better value in the process.”

2013 Dodge Dart SXT Special Edition

2013 Dodge Dart SXT Special Edition

The Dodge Dart SXT Special Edition features all the standard equipment on the SXT model, including a 2.0-liter 160 hp, Tigershark 4-cylinder engine, power windows, power locks, remote keyless entry, power mirrors, air conditioning, 60/40 split folding rear seat, four-wheel independent suspension, 17-inch aluminum wheels, unsurpassed 10 standard airbags and much more.

The $595 Special Edition package adds a black crosshair grille, dark tinted projector headlamps, projector fog lamps, LED racetrack tail lamps, integrated dual exhaust, Uconnect Voice Command with Bluetooth, leather-wrapped steering wheel, cruise control, steering-wheel mounted audio controls, front-passenger seat in-seat storage, remote start (with automatic transmission), USB port, rearview auto-dimming mirror with microphone, overhead console with sunglass holder, 12-volt auxiliary power outlet, trip computer, vehicle information center, tire pressure monitoring display, active grille shutters and underbody aerodynamic treatment.

2013 Dodge Dart SXT Special Edition with the Rallye Appearance

2013 Dodge Dart SXT Special Edition with the Rallye Appearance Group

Along with the SXT Special Edition, Dodge Dart customers can also order the new SXT “Rallye Appearance Group,” which includes a unique black front fascia, Rallye badge and class-exclusive 17-inch Hyper Black aluminum wheels for a U.S. MSRP of just $395.

The already well-equipped Dodge Dart Limited features a starting U.S. MSRP of just $19,995. For an additional U.S. MSRP of $1,810, the Dart “Limited Special Edition” package bundles the most popular premium features for a U.S. MSRP of $21,805.

The 2013 Dodge Dart Limited is packed with a slew of standard features, including the standard equipment of the SXT model plus unique bright grille, bright door handles, projector fog lamps, power heated mirrors with supplemental signals and courtesy lamps, 8.4-inch Uconnect touch screen, Floating Island Bezel, ParkView rear back-up camera, 7-inch full-color TFT (Thin Film Transistor) LED reconfigurable instrument cluster display, premium door trim panel with soft-touch upper surfaces, leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio control and speed control, accent stitching on the instrument panel, power 10-way driver’s seat, including power lumbar support, driver and front passenger seatback pockets, overhead console with sunglass holder, front passenger in-seat storage, illuminated front cupholders, illuminated vanity mirrors, temperature and compass gauge, 12-volt auxiliary power outlet in console, speed sensitive power locks, power front windows with one-touch up/down, ambient LED interior lighting, automatic headlamps, active grille shutters, underbody aerodynamic treatment, tire pressure monitoring display and Limited badge.

2013 Dodge Dart Limited Special Edition

2013 Dodge Dart Limited Special Edition

The Dart Limited Special Edition package adds premium Nappa Leather seats, heated front seats, heated steering wheel, power sunroof, racetrack LED taillamps, Sirius/XM Satellite radio, Sirius/XM Travel Link, Uconnect 8.4-inch touch screen with Garmin navigation, dual-zone automatic temperature control, remote start and universal garage door opener.

About Dodge Dart
The 2013 Dodge Dart redefines performance with an agile, fun-to-drive experience, compliments of its Alfa Romeo roots. It crafted with high-quality materials and loaded with state-of-the-art technology and class-leading safety features. The new Dart GT model builds on that foundation and offers attributes compact car buyers appreciate such as a 2.4L engine with 184 horsepower, a sport-tuned suspension, available hyper black 18-inch aluminum wheels, along with class-exclusive features like an 8.4-inch Uconnect Touchscreen media center and LED racetrack taillamps. The Dart provides drivers with the ultimate combination of power, efficiency, technology and style, all for a starting U.S. MSRP of just $15,995. The Dart is one of Kelley Blue Book KBB.com’s “10 Coolest Cars Under $18,000.”

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Jeep’s Wrangler, Grand Cherokee, Acura Capture Edmunds.com’s 2013 Best Retained Value Awards


There’s few people, or companies, that don’t like receiving awards. Especially if the award notes your product has staying power, is desired and retains its value long after the sale.

The folks at Jeep and Acura are probably tired from smiling all week after Edmunds.com cited the brands for having the best retained value, in a  projected residual value estimation after five years of ownership after being sold new. Edmunds.com qualifies the new price as being based upon its own True Market Value (TMV).

Jeep won in the non-luxury division, while Acura won in luxury division. That Jeep is placed in a non-luxury grouping is curious, given the addition of specific model and the up-level packages that can be ordered to run the stickers right up into what many would consider a luxury price and ride…but, I digress. Jeep’s Wrangler and Grand Cherokee were noted for their value while Acura’s

“Jeep’s small lineup is led by two popular models – Wrangler and Grand Cherokee – that deliver big residual value for their owners. The Wrangler is especially vital to the brand because its retained value sits at an elite level matched by few other vehicles in any segment,” says Edmunds.com Director of Auto Remarketing Joe Spina. “Meanwhile, this is the second year in a row that Acura has won, and the brand clearly has done a great job distinguishing its value in a hypercompetitive luxury market.”

In addition to these brand-level awards, Edmunds.com issued model-level awards in 22 separate categories. Ford and Toyota tied for the most model winners with four apiece. A full list of all 22 model winners can be found in Appendix 1 below and on Edmunds.com’s Best Retained Value® Awards page at http://www.edmunds.com/car-reviews/best-retained-value-cars.html.

All vehicle makes with more than 100,000 unit sales in the U.S. in 2012 were eligible for this year’s brand-level Best Retained Value® Awards. All model-year 2013 vehicles that were launched by the end of 2012 and had unit sales in March 2013 that were at least 20 percent of the average unit sales for the models in its segment were eligible for this year’s model-level Best Retained Value® Awards. Edmunds determined each model’s competitive segment based on its body type and the sales-weighted average MSRP of all available styles (excluding destination charges) of that model’s body type.

More details on Edmunds.com’s Best Retained Value® Awards can be found at http://www.edmunds.com/car-reviews/best-retained-value-cars.html.


2013 Edmunds.com Best Retained Value® Awards
Model-Level Winners




Retained Value^

Compact Truck




Convertible Under $35,000




Convertible $35K-$45K




Convertible Over $45K


Shelby GT500


Coupe Under $25,000




Coupe $25K-$35K




Coupe $35K-$45K


3 Series


Coupe Over $45,000








Large Light Duty Truck


Silverado 1500


Large Heavy Duty Truck


Sierra 3500HD


Sedan Under $20,000




Sedan $20K-$30K




Sedan $30K-$40K




Sedan Over $40K




SUV Under $25,000




SUV $25K-$35K




SUV $35K-$45K




SUV Over $45,000


LX 570






Wagon Under $35,000




Wagon Over $35,000








^ – Retained Value is the projected private party resale value after five years in the market and assuming 15,000 miles driven per year, expressed as a percentage of the True Market Value® (TMV®) price when sold new.

Honda Accord, Civic and CR-V Named Best Family Cars by Parents Magazine, Edmunds.com


There may not be too much of a good thing, or as someone once opined “there’s an embarrassment of riches”. The folks at Honda may well agree after the 2013 Honda Accord SedanCivic Sedan and CR-V compact SUV were all named to the 10 Best Family Cars list compiled by Parents Magazine and Edmunds.com. Honda’s hat-trick were selected over hundreds of models for excelling in the safety, fuel efficiency, technology and connectivity.

2013 Honda Accord EX-L V-6 Sedan.

2013 Honda Accord EX-L V-6 Sedan.

“As one of the most purchased brands by families and the leading manufacturer on this list, this recognition represents our laser focus on customer satisfaction,” said Mike Accavitti, senior vice president of auto operations at American Honda. “The Accord, Civic and CR-V all lead their respective segments in retail sales and Honda continues to focus on selling high value vehicles to one customer – or family – at a time.”

All-new for 2013, the Honda Accord was recognized as one of the top sedans for families by Parents Magazine and Edmunds.com. The Accord features available technology features like the LaneWatch™ blind spot display. With safety a top shopping consideration for families, the Accord earns industry-leading safety scores, having been rated as a TOP SAFETY PICK+ by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and distinguished by a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) 5-star Overall Vehicle Score.1

For the second straight year, the Civic was named among the top rated family cars for budget shoppers. Receiving significant upgrades for 2013, the Civic boasts class-leading standard features like a rearview camera, HandsFreeLink™ Bluetooth®, Pandora® internet radio interface, SMS text message feature and steering wheel audio controls. The Civic was also the only small car to be rated a TOP SAFETY PICK+ by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) and distinguished by a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) 5-star Overall Vehicle Score.1

2012 Honda CR-V EX-L AWD

2012 Honda CR-V EX-L AWD

Recognized for a second year as a top crossover vehicle was the CR-V. It is also rated by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) as a TOP SAFETY PICK and is distinguished by a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) 5-star Overall Vehicle Score.1

For more information about Parents Magazine and Edmunds.com’s list of the 10 Best Family Cars for 2013, please visitwww.parents.com and www.edmunds.com.

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1Government 5-Star Safety Ratings are part of NHTSA’s New Car Assessment Program (www.SaferCar.gov). Model tested with standard side airbags (SABs). Vehicles tested under the new program cannot be compared to MY10 and earlier vehicles.

Honda cuts Fit EV lease price $130 to $259/month

  • New three-year lease term requires no down payment and includes unlimited mileage, routine maintenance and collision coverage
  • Customers receive 240 volt EV home charging station equipment as part of the lease
2013 Honda Fit EV

2013 Honda Fit EV


It may not be a free lunch, but any time anyone can save a buck, or say $130 in a new or currently held car lease, it’s a win-win situation. With that in mind, Honda recently cut the price of the all-electriv FIT EV lease from $389 per month to $259, effective today, June 1.

Honda proudly notes the new three-year lease term stretches customer’s electric dollar even further with no down payment, unlimited mileage, routine maintenance, collision coverage and a 240 volt EV home charging station equipment (not including installation),1 from Leviton.

Existing leases also get the reduction, going forward starting in June 2013. With the reduced payment, unlimited mileage, maintenance and collision coverage, this new lease program makes the Fit EV one of the most affordable2 electric vehicles available in the U.S.

“The Fit EV already is a benchmark electric vehicle with a leading-range rating, fun-to-drive dynamics and excellent packaging,” said Steve Center, vice president of Environmental Business Development at American Honda Motor Co., Inc. “Now it’s the only EV on the market with no down payment, unlimited mileage, collision coverage and a free home charging station, giving customers an unprecedented value that only Honda can provide and a compelling reason to get off the barrel and onto the grid.”

Further, the Fit EV online application process has been streamlined for quicker approval and delivery. Underscoring Honda’s reduced price, its network of qualified Fit EV Honda dealers in California, Oregon, New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Maryland, Rhode Island and Connecticut will expand from 36 to more than 200 by the end of June.

Recently named one of the Ten Best Green Cars by KBB.com , the 2013 Honda Fit EV is the most efficient 5-passenger electric vehicle on the market with a combined adjusted Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) mile-per-gallon-equivalency rating of 118 MPGe3, an EPA-rated driving range of 82 miles, and a low energy-consumption rating of just 29 kilowatt hours (kWh) per 100 miles.

Fit EV customers also can take advantage of Honda’s partnership with SolarCity to install solar power with no upfront cost, allowing them to recharge their vehicle with clean, affordable power from the sun.

Customers interested in leasing the Fit EV should cyber surf over to http://automobiles.honda.com/fit-ev/. Information on the SolarCity partnership can be found athttp://www.hondasolarcity.com/.

2013 Honda Fit EV

2013 Honda Fit EV

Fit EV Competitive Lease Comparison

1Customer responsible for costs associated with installation of the 240 volt, 32 amp charging hardware, which is provided by Leviton, Honda’s preferred charging station supplier. Equipment remains with the customers after lease term.
2See chart above.
3132/105/118 city/highway/combined miles per gallon of gasoline-equivalent (MPGe) rating; 82 mile combined (city/highway) driving range rating (adjusted). Ratings determined by U.S. EPA. Your MPGe and range will vary depending on driving conditions, how you drive and maintain your vehicle, battery age/condition, and other factors. For additional information about EPA ratings, visit http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/label/learn-more-electric-label.shtml.
4Amount due at signing may include down payment, capitalize cost reduction, acquisition fee, security deposit and first month payment. Does not include taxes and title fees.
5Collision Coverage is included with the lease. This means that Honda is taking the risk and responsibility for repairs to the Fit EV, leaving to the lessee only the responsibility to obtain and carry liability insurance for at least the minimum required by the lease. There is no deductible, and Honda will evaluate and approve all repair requests submitted. The lessee will be required to call a toll free number to report all collisions/damage and receive instructions to arrange for repairs.

Connect with Honda:
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