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Car Reviews

Watch Munro's Tesla Model Y Teardown Proceed: Floorpan, Wiring

Paint? You don’t need no stinking paint?

Sandy Munro continues his Tesla Model Y teardown video series on his Munro Live YouTube channel. In the video we bring to you today, Munro looks closely at the Model Y’s floorpan, EPP floor risers, and wiring and seat stanchions.

Munro starts off this segment looking at the underside of the Model Y’s front carpeting, and how Tesla wisely uses expanded polypropylene foam (EPP) to achieve the desired result. He likes how they use the EPP to raise the Model Y’s floor so Tesla can use the same floorpan for the Model Y as they do for the Model 3.

Sandy Munro removes the EPP attached to the underside of the carpet in the Model Y

Every Model 3 part that Tesla can repurpose to use in the Model Y saves money, and Munro is a big fan of repurposing as well as saving money as long as it makes sense. 

Before moving onto the next item Munro points out that there are unpainted metal surfaces on the floorplan of the vehicle. 

We’ve has people come in and say “Oh my God, my car doesn’t have any paint on the steel for the seats” – Sandy Munro

Munro quickly dismisses that concern, saying that those surfaced do not need to be painted. In fact, in his opinion, it’s better that they aren’t painted because that saves money and is more environmentally friendly. We’ve had concerned Model 3 owners end us pictures of unpainted metal seat supports that had a good deal of surface rust on them, also. 

“If you were to look at a number of seats across the various manufacturers, you will find that about 50 percent do not paint the seat supports (bottom and/or back). They will however paint any area that is visible to the customer – i.e. the lower mount points and sometimes the rails if they are not covered with trim. So most have determined that they can live with a little surface rust on non-visible parts. Besides, eliminating the paint is good for the environment.” – Al Steier, Director of the Benchmarking Innovation Center at Munro and Associates

We reached out to Munro and Associates back then to help determine if it was an issue, and we were told not to worry, that it’s a common practice and won’t lead to any problems.

Sandy exposes the piping that protects the wires that connect the charge port to the battery.

Munro then walks around to the rear of the vehicle so we can see the connection for the high-voltage cable for the charge port. He shows that the wiring is located in pipe, instead of the cabling that he’s normally expect to see there. The Model 3 has the usual high-voltage cables that other EV makers do, but Tesla upgraded it for the Model Y and Munro calls it a “great idea”.

Sandy Munro points to the unpainted seat stanchions

Lastly, Munro looks at the stanchions used to lift the Model Y seats up. By using those, he concludes that Tesla was able to use the Model 3 seats in the Model Y, another example of repurposing that saves time and money. 

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Car Reviews

Tesla To Implement Revised ‘Launch Mode’ For Model S and Model X

It’s reportedly going to allow for even quicker starts by adjusting the damping, front ride height and power delivery.

Tesla is apparently going to change the Launch Mode feature that will really alter the way cars equipped with the air suspension (Model S and Model X) take off from standstill. According to @greentheonly who tweeted and broke the news about this, cars will apparently lower the front ride height and adjust damping to get the best possible start – this is reportedly going to be called the ‘cheetah stance.

He doesn’t go into much detail, though; check out the tweet in its entirety below

Altering the suspension to make the most of available traction is nothing new and it can even be traced back to the Ferrari Enzo supercar which stiffened its rear suspension for a fraction of a second just before and during a gear change in order for it to not destabilize the car. But since Teslas don’t have gears, what this new launch mode will is keep the front axle as planted as possible.

Whenever you do a hard launch in any car, the center of gravity is shifter rearward, and the front wheels have a tendency to lift off the ground. They don’t actually come off the ground in road cars, but they do for specialized machines such as dragsters.

We suspect that aside from lowering the front suspension, this revised Launch Mode will also stiffen the rear suspension in preparation for launch. This will further help to keep the front axle as planted as possible.

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Car Reviews

Forester vs. Tiguan, Koenigsegg Gemera deconstructed, 2020 BMW 745e review: What’s New @ The Car Connection

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan vs. 2020 Subaru Forester: Compare Crossover SUVs

The 2020 Volkswagen Tiguan and 2020 Subaru Forester are boxy compact crossovers with all-wheel drive and good safety ratings. Our comparison finds the Tiguan is larger and the Forester is a better value. 

Nissan adds large vehicles to Takata airbag recall

Nissan is recalling large vans, SUVs, and trucks for a faulty driver-side airbag inflator that could rupture and spray metal fragments into the cabin and cause injury or death, the automaker announced last week.

Review update: The 2020 Lexus ES 300h shelters drivers in the right place

Long-distance journeys may have settled into your mind, in this time of sheltering in place. One day we’ll be able to drive far, far away—and for that day your shopping list could start and begin with the 2020 Lexus ES 300h Ultra Luxury.

From Motor Authority:

Koenigsegg Gemera design

How Koenigsegg’s 3-cylinder engine makes 600 horsepower

The Koenigsegg Gemera is a four-seat hypercar that can do 0-62 mph in a claimed 1.9 seconds, but perhaps the most remarkable thing about this Swedish rocket ship is its 2.0-liter twin-turbocharged inline-3, which makes a staggering 600 horsepower. 

2021 BMW 5-Series Touring spy shots

The BMW 5-Series is currently into its seventh generation and the latest model will soon reach the midway point in its life cycle. In BMW tradition, the car will receive a facelift to keep it looking and feeling fresh over the second half of its life.

Tesla created a ventilator out of Model 3 parts to help the coronavirus pandemic

Tesla is one of several automakers attempting to retool factories to build ventilators in response to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The Silicon Valley firm released a video showing how it plans to use Model 3 parts to make a ventilator.

From Green Car Reports:

2020 BMW 745e xDrive – drive review

First drive review: 2020 BMW 745e plug-in hybrid luxury sedan goes your own way, all so posh

The BMW 7-Series plug-in hybrid drops its mpg, boost its electric range slightly, and becomes a much better-driving luxury sedan. 

McLaren plug-in hybrid sports car could have 20-mile electric range, arrives late 2020

The sports car maker McLaren is reportedly developing a plug-in hybrid that will focus a little more on electric range and efficiency. 

Future Hyundai electric cars might clean the air while they charge

Electric cars produce no “tailpipe” emissions, but what if they could also help clean up existing air pollution? The Hyundai Prophecy concept shows a way for future electric cars to gain that ability.

 

 

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Car Reviews

Toyota Announces Measures To Aid Customers Amid Coronavirus Lockdown

Looking at the current lockdown scenario and the problems customers might face once this phase gets over, Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) has announced a series of measures that will give it some relief in these troubled times. Among a host of service packages announced by the company include Free Maintenance Service, Roadside Assistance and extension of warranty on their vehicles. This includes both vehicles which have been purchased new or have been bought from company’s used car arm, Toyota U-Trust. Apart from that the major has also announced a reprieve on extended warranty as well as their Pre-Paid maintenance package called SMILES for up to two months.
Naveen Soni, Senior Vice President, Sales & Service, Toyota Kirloskar Motor, said, “To avoid any inconvenience to customers, we are trying our best to ensure seamless communication and hassle-free processes. Our ‘Customer Connect’ program is a step to build confidence, and show our commitment to our valued customers and our dealer partners, in these times of distress.”

Both the drivers of sales for Toyota in March have been the Innova Crysta and the  Fortuner

In a unique gesture free emergency support will also be given to customers who do not have the coverage till 15 days post the lockdown. Toyota says along with its dealerships it is actively addressing customer queries over phone and ensuring they are helped and guided in an effective manner. The dealerships are also providing doorstep facilities as essential services, with full cooperation from local authorities, in case of emergencies. Looking at the prolonged parking of the vehicles due to the lockdown various maintenance tips have also been given to the customers.

Additionally, TKM is offering an extension for the customers whose respective programs or products may have expired during this lockdown period. This extension will be valid till until 31st May, 2020. To ensure the vehicles remain in the best of the conditions, vehicle inspection, car cabin care and tyre & battery care will be provided once the dealerships are operational, albeit at a price.

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Car Reviews

2019 Subaru Crosstrek: Recall Alert

Vehicles Affected: Approximately 4,900 model-year 2019 Subaru Crosstrek SUVs equipped with rear seat belt assemblies with a dual-mode locking mechanism

The Problem: The seat belt webbing sensor locking mechanism may not lock as intended, which may not properly restrain the occupant in a crash involving multiple impacts, increasing the risk of an injury.

The Fix: Dealers will replace the rear seat belt assemblies for free.

What Owners Should Do: Subaru will begin notifying owners April 24. Owners can call the automaker at 844-373-6614, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or visit its website to check their vehicle identification number and learn more.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer. To check for other recalls, and to schedule a free recall repair at your local dealership, click here: Subaru Crosstrek

More From Cars.com:

  • Recall Basics: Everything You Need to Know
  • My Car Is Recalled, But There’s No Fix Yet: What Do I Do?
  • Why Can Dealers Sell Used Cars With Unfixed Recalls?
  • The 10 Biggest Recalls in 2019
  • More Recall News

Cars.com’s Editorial department is your source for automotive news and reviews. In line with Cars.com’s long-standing ethics policy, editors and reviewers don’t accept gifts or free trips from automakers. The Editorial department is independent of Cars.com’s advertising, sales and sponsored content departments.

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Car Reviews

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan vs. 2020 Subaru Forester: Compare Crossover SUVs

2020 Subaru Forester

Just like every culture has a distinct take on a stuffed dough ball—empanada, pierogi, panzarotti—every automaker has a distinct take on a compact crossover. The 2020 Subaru Forester is the steamed bun of this analogy, and the 2020 Volkswagen Tiguan is the lesser known bierocks. 

Both are distinct, both are boxy, both have good standard features, but the Forester stands out a bit more. On our menu, it earns a TCC Rating of 6.8 compared to the Tiguan’s 6.0. This score partly reflects the relative freshness of the Forester, which was overhauled for 2019 and won our Best Car To Buy 2019 award. A refreshed Tiguan is planned for 2021, yet it’s not without its charms, which we outline in detail below. 

MORE: Read our 2020 Volkswagen Tiguan and 2020 Subaru Forester full reviews

2020 Subaru Forester

2020 Subaru Forester

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

Both compact crossovers don 17-inch wheels and a conservative two-box shape. Both wear lower body cladding that suggests some off-road ability, but the Forester does it better with nearly an inch more of ground clearance and standard all-wheel drive. While the Forester is a couple inches taller, the Tiguan is longer and wider and is roomy enough to fit a third row that can haul grade-schoolers around town in a pinch. 

The Forester has a steeper windshield that offers excellent outward vision. The Tiguan’s conservative exterior carries over inside with a clean cabin design that isn’t as busy as the two-screen approach of the Forester. The Forester’s dash is topped with a hooded screen for vehicle info and active safety features. Functionally, it helps to compartmentalize all the possible info, but we prefer the look and feel of the Tiguan that has aged well inside. 

Both start around $26,000, but the Tiguan’s optional all-wheel drive adds another $1,300. Since the Forester comes with all-wheel drive and better basic features, it’s the better deal. But the Tiguan has more grunt and is sportier than the Forester. It uses a 184-horsepower 2.0-liter turbo-4 with an 8-speed automatic transmission making 221 pound-feet of torque. Drive modes can enhance the steering feel or delay the shift points for added fun, and even though the 8-speed can dawdle under heavy throttle on passing moves, it’s more responsive and has more snarl than the Forester. Its slightly lower ride height also adds a bit more handling prowess. 

2019 Subaru Forester

2019 Subaru Forester

2019 Subaru Forester

The Forester uses a more workmanlike 182-hp 2.5-liter flat-4 engine powered by a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) making 176 lb-ft of torque. The flat-4 can be noisy, but the CVT is one of the better ones in that it is hardly noticeable as it finds the best “gear” for the driver’s inputs. This may not equate to fun, but even with all-wheel drive, the Forester is way more efficient than the Tiguan, which is probably more important. The EPA rates it at 26 mpg city, 33 highway, 29 combined, whereas the all-wheel drive Tiguan rates 20/27/23 mpg. Even with front-wheel drive, the heavier, larger Tiguan only gets 25 mpg combined. 

Both compact crossovers offer spacious cabins with comfy front seats and roomy enough back seats to fit five passengers. The available third row in the Tiguan, which costs $595 with all-wheel-drive models, is functional in a pinch. A family of five would want to size up from either vehicle and consider the VW Atlas or Subaru Ascent for more room, however.

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

2020 Volkswagen Tiguan

Both models come well-equipped with standard active safety features including automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection. Since the Forester is newer it comes with more safety tech, including active lane control and adaptive cruise control. It earned top scores in crash testing from both the NHTSA and the IIHS, which gave it a Top Safety Pick+ award. The Tiguan, which comes with blind-spot monitors and rear cross-traffic alerts, earned a Top Safety Pick award, but hasn’t been tested by the NHTSA.

Standard equipment on the base models includes split-folding rear seats, a 6.5-inch touchscreen, cloth seats, Bluetooth connectivity, at least one USB port, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, which are better than the native infotainment systems of either. While the Forester Touring model tops $35,000 and the Tiguan SEL Premium balloons to $40,000, we prefer the base model Tiguan S ($27,265 with all-wheel drive) and the Forester Premium ($28,405) as the sweet spot of features and value. Premium adds heated front seats, power-adjustable driver’s seat, leather-wrapped steering wheel, and a panoramic moonroof to the Forester.

All things considered, the 2020 Subaru Forester dough ball does it better than the 2020 Volkswagen Tiguan, as our TCC Rating indicates. The Tiguan is more fun to drive and the available third row offers some interior flexibility, but the Forester excels at what is more important to most consumers with better features, safety scores, and fuel economy.

Summary

Styling

Performance

Comfort & Quality

Safety

Features

Fuel Economy

MSRP

Invoice

Fuel Economy – Combined City and Highway

Engine

Drivetrain




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Tesla To Offer 'Basic' Autopilot For Model 3 Long Range RWD

Original Tesla Model 3 owners will finally get their wish.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk replied to a recent tweet asking about the possibility of offering a basic version of Autopilot for original Tesla Model 3 Long Range Rear-Wheel Drive cars. He admitted it was a good idea and said it will be made available to buy in the Tesla app.

Tesla currently only offers the Model 3 in three official configurations: Standard Range Plus, Long Range (AWD), and Performance (AWD). All three come standard with Autopilot. You can also special order a Model 3 Standard Range, which doesn’t include Autopilot. Tesla used to offer the Model 3 in a few other versions. One popular configuration was the Long Range Rear-Wheel Drive.

Early Model 3 owners had to pay $3,000 to get Autopilot. It wasn’t standard in vehicles bought prior to April 2019. The Model 3 Long Range Rear-Wheel Drive was the first version of the Model 3 that came to market. Tesla stopped producing it in June 2019, but you could still order it “off the menu” for a short time. Some owners of this vehicle who didn’t initially opt for Autopilot argue that they should still be able to add it. This is especially true since all current Model 3s come standard with Autopilot.

As you can see from the tweet below, Jason (@jgrano305) made the request to Musk. While we don’t have any details yet about when this will become available or how much it will cost, the CEO plans to work with his team to move it forward. As always, we love to hear from you in the comment section.

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Car Reviews

Car leasing scam: Fraudsters advertise fake vehicle contracts to catch out motorists

Car leasing is the latest target for fraudsters with organised criminals aiming to use the coronavirus pandemic as a way to scam motorists out of their money. Fraudsters have been seen advertising fake leasing deals online or posing as companies willing to offer changes to their payment plan during the crisis. 

READ MORE

  • Don’t be caught out by this DVLA car tax scam

These scams may offer road users a competitive deal and take relevant payment information without providing a vehicle.

Scammers can also set up fake email accounts and social media channels using names of genuine brokers. 

The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) recently issued a warning to the public about an expected rise in scam activity during the coronavirus pandemic.

Analysis from campaign group Take Five to Stop Fraud says just nine percent of Britons can spot a scam. 

This can leave many motorists caught out and could give criminals easy access to personal information. 

Tom Preston, Managing Director of Hippo Leasing said: “The FCA recently issued a warning to the public about an expected rise in scam activity following the disruption and anxieties caused by the Coronavirus pandemic. 

“It’s a time when many of us are worrying about our job security and finances which can prove lucrative for fraudsters.”

Road users are advised by car experts Hippo Leasing to take extra precautions to avoid being caught out by the car scam. 

Motorists can protect themselves from the scam and prevent handing information to criminals through five simple tips and tricks. 

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Is it too good to be true? 

Motoring expert, Tom Preston, says if a deal is too good to be true then it probably will be. 

He says all legitimate companies adhere to rules set out by the FCA and will carry out checks before offering you a deal. 

These businesses will not contact you through email or text messages to offer motorists lower monthly premiums so these may be a scam. 

Does it sound too complicated? 

Tom Preston says scammers will often hit victims with jargon to confuse them into agreeing to a policy. 

However, leasing companies will usually give you clear information about key information such as deposits and payment information. 

READ MORE

  • Avoid buying a vehicle with a clocked mileage today

Research as much as possible 

Some scammers have upped their game by paying for advertising space on social media apps.

Motorists who see an accept online should always search up the company’s website and contact details to see if this sounds legitimate. 

The British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (BVRLA) can also inform you whether the company is a genuine leasing broker before signing up to an agreement. 

Don’t break under pressure

Honest salesmen will provide you with information and give you time to make a decision of whether the policy is right for you. 

If someone is rushing you to sign an agreement you should not trust them and could show something is not right.

Report it if in doubt 

Motorists should report any scam top Action Fraud for further investigation. Just 14 percent of cases were reported in 2017 despite a total of 4.7 million incidents of fraud. 

Tom Preston said: “If you’ve come across a car leasing scam, or fallen victim to one, it’s important to report it so steps can be taken to close the fake social media account, website or email address before others get caught in the trap.”

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Road traffic falls by up to three-quarters during lockdown

Road traffic had fallen to 73 per cent less than normal by 29 March, but is starting to increase again despite the lockdown


Road traffic in the UK initially fell by almost three-quarters during the coronavirus lockdown, according to new Government data, but is now on the rise again.

Since 27 February, the Cabinet Office has been releasing daily traffic figures to accompany the Government’s coronavirus press conferences. At first, this data showed a dramatic fall in the number of vehicles on the road.

  • Spike in road accidents during 10-minute evening period

The lowest levels seen were on 29 March, when there were 73 per cent fewer motor vehicles using the roads than pre-coronavirus. However, although traffic levels fell steadily up until this point, the numbers are now going back up.

In spite of the ongoing coronavirus lockdown, road traffic levels have now started increasing again. The latest figure available is for 3 April and showed there were 63 per cent fewer vehicles on the UK’s roads than pre-coronavirus.

The news follows the Government’s persistent messages to the British public that they must remain in their homes at all times, unless doing one of the following things:

  • Shopping for essential items (e.g. food and medicine) as rarely as possible
  • Taking one form of exercise per day (e.g. walking, running or cycling) alone or with members of the same household
  • Attending medical appointments
  • Assisting an elderly or vulnerable person
  • Travelling to and from work (only if working from home is not possible)

In spite of the clear advice, there have been numerous reported cases of people breaking lockdown rules, leading to suggestions that the Government could tighten the law even further.

Although there has undoubtedly been a significant drop in the number of people driving their cars, as shown by the figures, the increase in road traffic since 29 March could be indicative of a few drivers starting to disobey the rules by taking unnecessary journeys.

Do you think tougher lockdown measures should be imposed? Let us know the comments below…

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Car Reviews

Jonny Smith Calls VW e-Up! 'The Anti-Tesla EV'

He reviews a new VW e-Up!, argues its simplicity is actually somewhat refreshing.

There are plenty of EVs out there that are designed to shout about being electric and make you feel different compared to a conventional gas or diesel car. These are ideal for those who want an EV to make them feel more special than a normal car and those people probably won’t appreciate the honest simplicity of the Volkswagen e-Up!.

At launch, it had a small 18.7 kWh battery pack and it didn’t offer a lot of usable range, but the latest version of the electric Up! fixes that problem. It now comes with a 32.3 kWh pack that grants it a WLTP range of 260 km.

Its main advantage, though, is that it’s quite affordable by EV standards. And its sister models, the Skoda Citigo iV and SEAT Mii Electric are cheaper still and they offer the exact same powertrain.

As Jonny Smith puts it in his review of his e-Up! long term loaner (which he picked up after taking back the e-Golf he’d been driving for two years), it doesn’t feel luxurious or techy and for this reason he calls it ‘the anti-Tesla.’ In fact, with exposed metal inside and not that many features, it feels pretty spartan, but if you can get over that (and aren’t explicitly looking for a premium feeling car), then it’s definitely an EV worth considering.

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