Jay Leno Gets Up Close With New Corvette Z06

King of comedy and legendary car collector Jay Leno gets up close and personal with this review of the new 2015 Corvette Z06 convertible.  After watching this video it sure makes me want to head down to my local GM dealer and put my order in. The whole clip is worth watching but make sure you check out the 20:35 mark when the Popo makes an appearance…..

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2014 Cadillac SRX

The year 2013 was pivotal in Cadillac’s recent resurgence and although it’s still early it’s looking like their incredible momentum will continue through 2014. As GM’s top luxury brand and iconic symbol of the American auto industry, the stakes are high for Cadillac to change the playing field and re-establish itself as a top global brand.

2010 Cadillac SRX (10) (1)

During the 90s and early 2000s, the brand’s relevance took a major hit as rivals such as Lexus, Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz offered some very compelling models. However, over the last few years GM has focused heavily on bringing stellar new technology and designs to Cadillac which has resulted in a series of award-winning models such as the performance focused V-Series, CTS and ATS.

2014 Cadillac CTS-V Sedan

2014 Cadillac CTS-V Sedan

Last year, we reviewed the multi-award winning Cadillac ATS which was a dream to drive in the summer with its manual six-speed transmission. Well, now its winter and it made sense to take a look at Cadillac’s SRX crossover.

Cadillac SRX

Cadillac SRX

The SRX’s interior includes two rows of seating which provides ample space for five passengers.  The leather seats are very comfortable and include electronic extendable thigh bolsters in the front seats.  The wood trim and high-quality interior materials make for a high-end look and feel.

Interior of Cadillac SRX

Interior of Cadillac SRX

Under the hood all SRX models come with a 308-horsepower, 3.6-liter V-6 engine paired to a six-speed automatic transmission. The engine makes its peak torque at 2,400 rpm providing enough low-end torque to accelerate onto the highway or to overtake a slower vehicle. With a 0-60 time of 7.1 seconds the SRX is quick for a vehicle that weighs in the range of 4,500 pounds.

Our tester was an SRX Premium AWD model, the top of line trim level available and comes in at $55,640 CDN  MSRP.  This is significantly higher than the base FWD model which starts at $40,285 MSRP so you need to weigh the value of all the extra features. However, both prices are in line with its current competition and the SRX’s warranty is very solid.

Our tester came equipped with some amazing features; GM’s very slick CUE infotainment system which includes enhanced steering-wheel and instrument-panel controls, plus an eight-inch touch screen interface. The touch-screen is motorized and can flip-up to reveal a hidden storage cubby. CUE can pair up to ten Bluetooth devices, and incorporates all the latest technology including standard HD radio and Bose’s Centrepoint® premium 10-speaker surround sound system. In addition, other features include Ultra View sunroof, three-zone climate control; adaptive forward lighting that swivels the headlamps in sync with vehicle steering; on-board power with 2 USB ports, SD card slot auxiliary input jack and 12-volt power outlet; a power lift-gate with adjustable height setting; and a dual-screen video system for rear entertainment.

Rear seats

Rear seats

Cadillac remains one of the most iconic brands in North America and as a result its place in pop culture is immense. There are so many musical cultural references to Cadillac from both past and present (Elvis Presley, Jay LenoLudacris,Travis Barker). However, the biggest one recently comes from Seattle rapper and recent Grammy winner Macklemore’s song titled White Walls which chronicles the singers’s love and appreciation for this American icon. The song’s video captures this vibrant Cadillac spirit as it showcases different Cadillac’s from various eras in all their restored glory.

Efficiency

The SRX is rated at 13.2L/100 km city 8.8L/100 km highway AWD *based on Natural Resources Canada’s 2014 Fuel Consumption Guide

Storage:

The SRX includes 29.9 cubic feet of storage with seats folded forward or 61.1 cubic feet of storage with the rear seats folded down.  Our tester came equipped with the Cargo Management System which includes a U-Rail system, which uses a floor-mounted metal track and an adjustable cargo fence to help keep items in place. Also included are an innovative concealed under floor storage bin and an air-conditioned glove box.

roomy back area

roomy back area

Competition:

The North American mid-sized luxury crossover/SUV market is a crowded one and Cadillac continues to have many strong competitors including; Audi Q5, Mercedes-Benz GLK, Lexus RX 350, Infiniti QX50, BMW X3 and Land Rover Evoque.

Final thoughts:

Despite the ever-increasing stiff competition, the Cadillac SRX remains a top option for consumers looking for a luxury crossover. It brings so much with its five-seat, front-drive/AWD options, latest technology, many safety and road refinement features, all matched with a luxurious interior style. It also does not hurt that many of its styling cues are taken from a mix of the beautiful CTS and Escalade.

Side view Cadillac SRX

Side view Cadillac SRX

Driving the SRX you really notice the amount of engineering that has gone into this vehicle from its lack of body roll to the enhanced power steering which combine to offer a European feel. Along with this, a spirited 0 to 60 time, the SRX’s size and ride height make the car feel solid and safe in all driving conditions.

Overall, the 2014 Cadillac SRX’s unique blend of luxury, refinement and driver confidence provides a top-notch choice for those consumers looking for a luxury crossover.

Midweek News Update

As today is hump day we wanted to provide you with a brief auto news wrap up. Here in Ontario, the big news today was a joint announcement by Canada’s Provincial and Federal governments to provide Toyota Canada with a $34 million investment to help the auto maker build the Lexus RX450h hybrid at their plant in Cambridge, Ontario.  See here for full article.

lexus-rx-450h-hybrid

In other major news, here is an amazing video from Jay Leno’s Garage YouTube channel that provides a sneak peek of the new 2014 Corvette Stingray.  It is evident from all the coverage that GM’s new Corvette has truly become the “darling” of the North American International Auto show with its redesigned good looks, unrivaled price point and striking interior.

Keeping with the auto show theme, Team RedlineNorth is headed to Detroit this weekend to check out the final two days of the North American International Auto show so be sure to look out for our coverage in the weeks to come.

Via Motors

The following is a video of Jay Leno talking to Bob Lutz (former vice chairman of GM) about a new electrified pick up truck that is about to enter the market manufactured by Via Motors.

Bob Lutz was the one of the main proponents of the Chevy Volt during his tenure at GM. He is now a board member at Via Motors, a new company that is focusing producing ‘range extended’, also called plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs).  These are vehicles that run on electricity, but also have a back up gasoline engine.

What makes Via Motors unique in the EV market is their production (or more accurately conversion) to a PHEV of a full size pickup truck based on the Chevy Silverado platform called VTrux.

They also offer a full size SUV (based on the Suburban)…

and delivery van (based on the GM G-2500 van).

To date the vast majority of electric vehicles entering the global market have been modestly sized vehicles. The full size offerings by Via Motors could be a game changer for those who would like to own an electric vehicle, but want more size and space than what is currently available.

In addition, the Via Motors pickup comes with an optional on-board inverter that can be used in place of a generator to power the workplace or provide emergency power.  For contractors, or those who use their pickups in remote locations and require a generator this may be an ideal solution.


The pickup truck will get 40 miles (64 km) on a single charge and an additional 300 miles (482 km) on the gasoline engine.  This will likely provide enough range for the vast majority of the population.

The anticipated MSRP of the vTrux pickup isn’t exactly cheap at $79,999 USD. However,  in many jurisdictions the vehicle would likely qualify for government incentives.

Fleet deliveries have started and consumer deliveries are expected in 2013.