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Archive for March, 2012

OnStar Offering Vehicle Tracking for $3.99/Month

March 31st, 2012

OnStar Family Link Vehicle Locator Price $3.99/Month Interface Screen Shot Header

Owners of GM vehicles equipped with OnStar will soon be able to subscribe to a $3.99/month service that allows them to track and locate their vehicle at any time. Called Family Link, the service will show the vehicle’s current location at any time via the new OnStar Family Link web site, and will even provide text and email alerts if certain locations are reached.

We can think of a few uses: forgetting where you parked, tracking a stolen car, aiding in EV use planning, keeping tabs on the kids (or a significant other), making car sharing services that much easier, etc. For now, Family Link will only be available on GM vehicles fitted with OnStar as OEM equipment, and not for users of the standalone OnStar FMV system.

All 2012 GM vehicles come standard with OnStar, though features vary by model and subscription package. Family Link will begin its public launch in mid-April.


2012 Honda CR-V Lease Special: $239/month

March 30th, 2012

2012 Honda CR-V April Lease Deal Special Offer $239/Month Header

The 2012 Honda CR-V has room for you, your family and all your gear and will save you a bundle on a $5+-per-gallon summer vacation (23 city/31 highway mpg) over a larger SUV. Honda’s segment sales-leading compact crossover is redesigned for 2012 with all new eager-to-please styling and a versatile interior. Now it can be yours to lease at a price you can afford.

2012 Honda CR-V LX FWD With 5-Speed Automatic

  • $239 per month for 36 months
  • $2,799 due at lease signing
  • 12,000 annual miles, $0.20/mile thereafter
  • Offer ends April 30, 2012

More hot current Honda offers here!


2014 BMW M3: Pricing, Specs and Release Date

March 29th, 2012

2014 BMW M3 Rendering Twin-Turbo V6 M-Power Engine Rumors Header

Years of speculation over the next-gen BMW M3 and its engine have reached fever pitch as the car’s release date gets closer. Now Car and Driver reports the next M3 will use a new advanced BMW M-Power twin-turbocharged V6, rather than a V8 like the current car or a turbo inline-6 in more-typical BMW fashion.

BMW hasn’t offered a V6 engine in a production car, well ever, so this would be a radical departure, but you can bet any powerplant with the M3 label on it will be a work of art.

Reports place engine displacement between 3.0 and 3.5 liters with rumored power output figures of around 429 horsepower and 405 lb-ft. of torque, with info attributed to “a BMW insider.” Enthusiasts claiming insider knowledge of M-Power suggest this may be accurate.

2014 BMW M3 Artist Rendering F80 F82 M-Power V6 Rear Quarter

The yellow car shown here is an artist’s rendering that essentially swaps front and rear design details from the new F30 2012 3-Series onto a current-gen E92 M3 car. Official sightings are limited to heavily camouflaged test mules (shown in the video below), but we do know the new car will debut as a sedan first with the coupe and convertible to follow.

Expect the F80 2014 M3 Sedan to bow late next year with the coupe and convertible to follow with a release date by mid-Summer 2014. As for pricing, we’ll venture to say around $65k to start. The current M3 starts at $60,100.


Cadillac ATS Takes on BMW, Audi, Lexus and Infiniti

March 28th, 2012

Cadillac ATS vs BMW, Audi, Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Infiniti 2013 ATS Header

Cadillac has tried to do the small entry-level luxury car thing before. The 1980s brought the forgettable Cimarron, while in the late 1990s and early 2000s Caddy offered the downright dislikable Catera. Each time Cadillac marketed the cars as a chance to take on the Germans, but failed. Not this time.

The 2013 Cadillac ATS is an all-new rear-wheel drive small luxury sport sedan with its sights clearly set on the BMW 3-Series and sport-minded compact models from Infiniti, Audi, Lexus and Mercedes-Benz that each year try to dethrone Germany’s best. The ATS is sized nearly identically to the new 2012 3-Series Sedan, its width, length and height within fractions of an inch and its wheelbase slightly shorter.

Cadillac ATS vs BMW, Audi, Lexus, Infiniti, Mercedes-Benz Profile

Gentlemen, start your engines: there will be three at launch. The value engine for cost-conscious mpg lovers will be GM’s 2.0-liter Ecotec four-cylinder, making 200 horsepower. Stepping up to sportier, an all-new turbocharged 2.0-liter Ecotec four will make 270 horses and 260 lb-ft. of torque, besting the 328i’s twin-turbo four which outputs 240 horses and 260 lb-ft.

Sitting atop the range, a 3.6-liter V6 will make 318 horsepower and 265 lb-ft. of torque, though curiously it won’t be offered with the 6-speed manual available only with the 2.0T. Buyers will have the choice of a 6-speed autobox with any engine, though the Infiniti G37 and Mercedes-Benz E-Class offer seven cogs, while the BMW has eight. Fuel economy should suffer a bit.

Cadillac ATS vs BMW, Audi, Lexus, Infiniti, Mercedes-Benz Interior CUE

The real question facing Cadillac is: how does the ATS drive? Don’t get us wrong—it looks great on paper: MacPherson strut front and multilink rear suspension with an available driver-adjustable magnetic ride control system. A ZF-designed electronic power steering system, available Brembo brakes and limited-slip differential. Add near-perfect 50-50 weight distribution to that list and you have what BMW has spent decades to engineer.

In fact, Cadillac says the development team set sights on the E46 (1999-2005) 3-Series, a well-balanced and light-on-its-feet car that appeals to many drivers even more than today’s high-tech and heavier BMWs. We can’t wait to wring this thing out.

Cadillac ATS vs BMW, Audi, Lexus, Infiniti, Mercedes-Benz CUE Screenshot

Inside is a sculpted and attractive if a little busy interior. Without decades of conventions to be tied down to, Cadillac could go any direction they liked with this one. Overall it looks warm and inviting with purpose, though the Hyundai Veloster-like center stack is a little weird. Cadillac’s new CUE infotainment system will be on hand.

Does this car have what it takes to run with the pure driving thrill of the BMW and Infiniti, the effortless power of the Mercedes, the luxury of the Lexus and the raw class oozing from the Audi?  We think so.  We commend Cadillac for daring to be great.

The ATS will debut this summer with pricing for the base 2.0 expected to start at around $31,000.


Fake wheelies not your cup of Crown? Then this 1,800-horsepower Camaro should fit the bill nicely.

March 28th, 2012

1800 Horsepower RWHP Camaro Texas Mile Car Under Hood Detail

Forget Mustangs doing fake wheelies at the strip.  The Bowtie Brotherhood are collectively snickering at Shelby’s PR debacle.  This Camaro is the real deal.  Late Model Racecraft is well-known for tuning GM smallblock LS V8 engines to ridiculous heights, but consider us thoroughly impressed.

Forget the supercharged 580-horsepower Camaro ZL1, this just may be the fastest Camaro on four wheels.

[Get Pricing on a 2012 Chevrolet Camaro here]

Watch the dyno run below as LMR’s unassuming fourth-gen Chevy Camaro Texas Mile Car makes an insane 1,808.6 horsepower and 1,330.2 lb-ft. of torque at the rear wheels. The result? How about a 239-mph standing mile, on street tires, with the boost turned way down.

1800 Horsepower RWHP Camaro Texas Mile Car Dyno Graphic