2018 Lexus GX-460 Luxury SUV

 

The Lexus was brought to the studios of Pirate Radio FM104.7 for an analysis by George Gray and Matt Arguello:

Full time four wheel drive – Fire Agate Pearl paint – Sepia leather seating and mahogany trim – 7 passenger w/ 4 captains chairs – 109.8” wheelbase – 192.1” long – Weighs 5,130 lbs. and tows 6,500 lbs. – 18”, Gunmetal silver painted twelve-spoke aluminum alloy wheels – LED daytime running lights and 8” infotainment center – Backup camera, Lexus navigation, adaptive cruise control, tilt wheel, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, and Bluetooth capability   Moonroof and rear dual screen entertainment system – P265/60R18 Bridgestone Dueler mud and snow rated tires – XM/AM/FM Mark Levinson premium surround sound 11 speaker stereo – 4.6 liter, 301 horsepower 8 cylinder engine with six speed automatic transmission – zero to 60 in 7.8 seconds – $72,485.00  list price           Built in Toyota, Aichi, Japan – 414 miles of range, 18 mpg highway/15 mpg city/16 mpg combined – 23 gallon tank

2018 Mazda6 FWD Signature Sedan

The Mazda6 was driven to Pirate Radio (104.7FM) for a walk-around by both DJ’s, Matt “The Big Kahuna” Arguello, and George “Elvis” Gray:

Front wheel drive – Machine Gray metallic paint with Chestnut Nappa leather seating – 5 passenger – 111.4” wheelbase – 192.7” long – Weighs 3,560 lbs.   19”, Sport silver painted ten-spoke aluminum alloy wheels – LED daytime running lights and 8” infotainment center – Backup camera, Mazda navigation, adaptive cruise control, tilt wheel, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, and Bluetooth capability – Moonroof – P225/45R19 Bridgestone Bliizzak winter tires – XM/AM/FM Bose premium 11 speaker stereo – 2.5 liter, 227 horsepower turbocharged 4 cylinder engine with six speed automatic transmission – zero to 60 in 6.5 seconds – $36,140.00  list price           Built in Hofu, Japan – 508  miles of range, 31 mpg highway/23 mpg city/26 mpg combined – 16.4 gallon tank

2019 Honda Insight FWD Touring Sedan

The Honda hybrid was driven to Pirate Radio (104.7 FM) for an analysis by the DJ’s, Matt “The Big Kahuna” Arguello and George “Elvis” Gray:

Front wheel drive – Cosmic Blue metallic paint with Ivory leather seating – 5 passenger – 106.3” wheelbase – 184” long – Weighs 2,987 lbs. – 17”, Sport black/silver painted ten-spoke aluminum alloy wheels – LED daytime running lights and 8” infotainment center – Backup camera, navigation, adaptive cruise control, tilt wheel, and Bluetooth capability – Moonroof – Remote engine starter – AM/AM/FM premium 10 speaker stereo – 1.5 liter, 151 horsepower gasoline/electric 4 cylinder engine with continuously variable automatic transmission – zero to 60 in 9 seconds – $28,985.00  list price           Built in Greensburg, Indiana – 477  miles of range, 45 mpg highway/51 mpg city/48 combined – 10.6 gallon tank

2019 Toyota Sequoia 4 x 4 TRD Sport

The DJ’s at Pirate Radio 104.7 FM, George “Elvis” Gray and Matt “The Big Kahuna” Arguello, took at look at the Seqouia in the studio parking lot:

Four wheel drive with limited slip differential – Magnetic gray metallic paint with black leather seating – 7 passenger – 122” wheelbase – 205” long   Weighs 5,985 lbs. 20”, TRD Sport black painted twelve spoke aluminum alloy wheels   LED daytime running lights and heated front and rear seats – Backup camera, navigation, blind spot monitor, cruise control, lane departure warning, and rear park assist/cross traffic alert, Bluetooth capability – Power sliding moon roof – XM/AM/FM Entune/JBL premium stereo – 6.1” touchscreen    5.7 liter 381 horsepower V-8 engine with six speed automatic – zero to 60 in 6.6 seconds – $59,745.00  list price           Built in Princeton, Indiana – 449 miles of range, 17 mpg highway/13 mpg city/14 combined – 26.4 gallon tank

2019 Volkswagen Jetta 1.4T SEL Sedan

The Volkswagen was driven to Pirate Radio (104.7 FM) for an analysis by the DJ’s, Matt “The Big Kahuna” Arguello and George “Elvis” Gray:

Tornado Red paint – Heated Titan black leatherette buckets and five passenger seating – 8” touchscreen multimedia display – Cruise control, radar equipped   LED headlights and daytime running lights – Panoramic moon roof and lane keeping system – BeatsAudio premium stereo with subwoofer – 147 horsepower, 1.4 liter turbo four w/ 184 lb. ft. of torque – Eight speed automatic transmission and front-wheel drive – Backup camera and start/stop technology – 16” alloy wheels and 14.1 cubic ft. trunk – $25,265.00 –  Made in Puebla, Mexico – 40 highway-30 city-34 combined  MPG – 528 miles of range w/ 13.2 gal. tank

 

Ford F-150 4 x 4 Supercrew Pickup

The Ford F-150 was driven to Pirate Radio (104.7) so that George “Elvis” Gray could help me analyze the unit:

When I got my driver’s license, GMC Truck and Coach was building America’s first V-6 powered pickup (pretty much America’s first V-6, period).  At that time (1963) it was customary for most pickups to have V-8 power, and to think of a six-cylinder pickup was to think of a cheap pickup.  That was unless it was a GMC, thought to be a premium brand with its huge V-6s and lots of torque.  I remember farmers bringing their GMC’s into Grant, Nebraska, and chugging around town running errands and rounding up supplies.

Now, 55 years later, Ford Motor Company has moved to V-6 power for their best-selling pickup lineup (both gasoline and diesel).  When I picked up Ford’s 2018 F-150 for this test, I was anxious to experience the V-6 that they employ in these vehicles.  My loaner was powered with a 3.0 liter diesel engine with turbocharger and 250 horsepower at 5,000 rpm.  Torque for the unit was 420 lb. ft. @ 2,500 rpm, enhanced by installing the turbochargers and direct fuel injection.  Ford adds a sound enhancer to the V-6, and thus the driver gets the sound of a V-8 upon acceleration – this one enjoyed it.  A ten-speed SelectShift automatic (console shifter) was also on hand.

The F-150 was the Lariat edition (M.S.R.P. – $62,955.00 with all options and freight), the middle of the road offering of their five models.  Quite fancy it was, with two rows of heated leather seating, navigation, Bang and Olufsen audio system, blind spot monitor, adaptive cruise control, oversized moonroof, tailgate ladder with grab bar, trailering package, electric sliding back glass, heated steering wheel and Lightning blue tri-coat metallic paint.  Additionally, the pickup had a FX4 off-road package with locking rear axle, hill descent control, skid plates and tuned front and rear shock absorbers.

With such equipment, it would seem as if the Ford F-150 would not impress on the highway.  That was not the case, as ride, handling, road noise and guidance were all on target.  Visibility in this truck will surprise a person, and hats off to Ford for putting the scallops in the driver and passenger glass for peeking under the exterior mirrors.

Styling has been a hallmark of Ford pickups for a long time, and the company has enjoyed the number one rung on the sales ladder for over three decades.  For 2018, the vehicle has been restyled, but the big news is the aluminum alloy now used to produce the cab and box.  Ford calls it “high-strength, military-grade aluminum alloy” and it shaves between 500 and 70o lbs. off of the weight of the unit.  Thus, the fuel economy (I got 21.8 mpg), acceleration, and load capacity are all enhanced.  This Ford F-150 Supercrew has quite a range of capabilities.

 

2018 Volkswagen Jetta 1.4T SE Sedan

Front wheel drive – Silk Blue metallic paint – Cornsilk Beige leatherette trim   5 passenger – 183” long like a Toyota Corolla – Heated front bucket seats   Weighs 3,000 lbs. – Power sunroof – Backup camera, blind spot warning, and cruise control -XM/AM/FM stereo – 4 speakers – 6.4” touchscreen – 1.4 liter Four cylinderTurbo engine with 150 horsepower – torque is 184 – Zero to 60 in 8.4 seconds – Six speed automatic transmission – 16”  alloy wheels   205/55HR16 all season radials – $23,095.00  list price        Built in Puebla, Mexico – 550 miles of range, 32 mpg combined, 28 mpg city, and 38 mpg highway – 14.5 gallon tank

Lexus GS-300 F Sport RWD Sedan

A trip was made to Pirate Radio (104.7 FM) to review the Lexus with Matt “The Big Kanuna” Arguello and George “Elvis” Gray:

Rear wheel drive with 3 driving modes – Ultrasonic Blue Mica blue paint with jet black leather seating – 5 passenger – 193” long like a Chevy Malibu   Weighs 3,805 lbs. with a 38.6’ turning circle – 19”, machined split-five spoke aluminum alloy wheels – Heads up display and LED daytime running lights   Backup camera, navigation, blind spot monitor, cruise control, lane departure warning, and rear park assist/cross traffic alert, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto capability and heated steering wheel – Power sliding moon roof – XM/AM/FM Lexus premium stereo – 8” touchscreen – 2.0 liter 241 horsepower, turbo-four engine with eight speed automatic – zero to 60 in 5.8 seconds – $54,520.00  list price     –      Built in Toyota, Aichi, Japan – 525 miles of range, 30 mpg highway/21 mpg city/24 combined – 17.5 gallon tank