Watch Out Tesla: Hyundai and Kia is coming soon, like today

Image result for niro ev

The 2019 Kia Niro EV

The Hyundai Group (Hyundai-Kia-Genesis) is serious.    Hyundai’s popular Sonata and Elantra models as well has Kia’s Optima’s and Forte has seen huge declines in sales.  Like the most of auto industry, consumers are choosing SUV’s over passenger cars.  With one exception Tesla.  If you in any major city you have seen a Tesla.

There are more 2018 Model 3’s on the road than the Ford Fusion, Chevy Malibu, and Nissan Altima.

Elon Musk now has the worlds attention.  Within the next 16 months, nearly every automaker will have an electric vehicle with a range of at least 200 miles in their lineup. The problem is, most of the planned vehicles are out of the price range of the average car buyer.  Jaguar I pace starts at 69K , Audi’s E-tron with 240 mile range will hit the streets in April starting at 74K.

The Tesla Model 3 was supposed to be at 35K the affordable electric car.  However, few has seen one. The average Tesla is selling for a pinch over 50k.   Tesla says, they will begin offering the base model this spring.  If you buy the base model as advertised, it will have a range of 264 miles and if your sticking to that price you must like the color black. Any other color is a fifteen hundred dollar option.

General Motors electric offering is the Chevy Bolt.  For 35,000 you can get a nicely equipped Bolt with a range of 240 miles.   The designers at GM went the Prius direction when it came to styling.   A car that said, I’m driving  I’m driving an environmental friendly non polluting car. Unfortunately the Prius isn’t selling and the Chevy Bolt are accumulating dust at Chevy Dealerships.

Its a sound car and a good alternative to Tesla. Unlike Tesla, no one would call the Chevy Bolt sexy.

Enter Hyundai

Hyundai, developed its first all electric car in 1991.  In 2011, the Company introduced the Hybrid Sonata Hybrid to the US Market. Currently, the automaker has seven variations of Hybrid, Plug In Hybrid models including two all electric models the Kia Soul EV and the Hyundai Ioniq models.  Those two electric models have a range of less than 115 miles.

Last November, Hyundai announced they would sell an all electric version of the Hyundai Kona.  This car,while smaller than the Tesla has an all important range of  258 miles.  Only seven fewer miles than the standard Tesla model 3 and a well equipped model will begin at $37,000 excluding the $7500 Federal Tax Credit, no longer available on the Tesla***

The  Hyundai Kona, recently received the Prestigious “North American Utility Vehicle of the Year” a first for any Hyundai.   The Kona. should go on sale any moment in California. That’s the good news for California Residents.  The bad news, is there is a long waiting list.

However, the Kia is plans to release an all electric version of its Niro next month. The NiroEV is larger than the KonaEV. The two vehicles share the same  64-kWh battery  however the range on the NiroEV is 239 miles.    Unlike the KonaEV, the NiroEV will offer faster charging,  a CCS DC fast-charging setup, which can refill the battery to 80 percent in 75 minutes.  30 minute will add approximately 100 miles of range.

  Kia says the NiroEV will go on sale mid-to-late February and will be available in 12 states.  California, Connecticut, Georgia, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Texas and Washington.

Pricing for the Niro EV will began around 38,000 before the $7500 Federal Tax Credit.

What is the Federal Tax Credit and why is it no longer available on Tesla’s? 

The Federal EV Tax Credit is not a rebate on the price of the car that you get instantly when making the purchase. You have to apply to receive it when you file your annual tax return. You or your tax professional will fill out an IRS Form 8936, which is submitted with your return. Since it is a tax credit, you have to wait until you file your next year’s return before you will receive the tax incentive.

You cannot claim the tax credit until you take delivery of the new vehicle. Deposits and prepayments do not count. It is not available on leased vehicles.

Each vehicle manufacturer is allowed to sell up to 200,000 qualifying plug-in electric vehicles (battery-electric cars and plug-in hybrids) before the EV tax credit on their products begins to phase out.  This isn’t for one model, its applies to all EV models sold by a single Auto maker.

***Last year, Tesla sold nearly 150,000 Model 3’s,  When you include Tesla’s Model S and the Model X its has sold more than 200,000 cars.   To stay competitive, Tesla has reduced prices on all of their models.  

General Motors is projected to reach its maximum by late spring early summer**

In addition to the Federal Tax Credit,  some states are offering credits and rebates. Colorado is currently the most generous of the states, offering a credit of up to $5,000 that can be used in conjunction with the federal tax credit to save you up to $12,500 off the price of the car. In some cases, the incentives come in the form of an instant vehicle rebate.

California offers rebates up to $7000*  for residents on purchased and leased Electric Vehicles, plug in’s and fuel cell vehicle.  The state offers higher rebates for lower income car buyer.  *Unlike Colorado, California’s rebates are based on specific models and the is less you earn, the greater the rebate.

Sometime, Somewhere in 2019  “The 2020 Kia Soul EV “

The Kia Soul is Kia’s best selling model by a wide margin.  It is known for its generous interior space and urban dimensions.   It will also be powered by the same battery as the Kona EV, and the Niro EV.   The Kona and Niro storage is larger the the Soul’s but the Soul upright interior is larger.   The 2020 Soul’s are all new, and with an estimated range of 239 miles the 2020 SoulEV has more than double the driving range of the 2018 SoulEV . The release date of the SoulEv is unknown.  Some sources say next month, others say mid summer.

Currently on sale in California, is the first SUV fuel cell vehicle the Hyundai Nexo

with a base price of 59,000 and a range of 380 miles. Last month Hyundai sold 35 models.   The challenge for fuel cells vehicles, is refueling  stations.

If your keeping count, the Hyundai group has four electric vehicles, four plug in vehicles and one fuel cell SUV.

The demand is high for electric vehicles, with prices under 40K Hyundai will be Tesla’s largest competitor this year in the US.

While Tesla has an apple like following, Hyundai will put a sizable dent into Tesla’s sales by the third quarter of this year.    Tesla’s Model 3 was to be the peoples car, and its technology is superior to anything on Hyundai’s drawing board.   However, what separates these companies is price and service.

 Tesla, has a much smaller dealer network than the Hyundai Group and a shorter warranty.  However, many of Tesla’s fixes can be done electronically without the customer stepping into a service department.  Hyundai has more experience building cars.

If I wanted to buy an electric car today, are there any deals?  

With the exception of the European makes and the Chrysler Pacific plug in hybrid models, deep discounts are available.  There are also deep discounts for the lower range (less than 150 miles) all electric vehicles.

However, the best buy is on the all electric Chevy Bolt.  The Bolt has a range of nearly 240 miles.  When it was released, they sold quickly at full price.  Today, they are sitting on dealers lots.  Deep discounts and are available (check Chevy’s website for rebates) and as of this writing The Chevy Bolt still qualify for the full ($7500 Tax Credit-today**)  

How does the Niro Drive?



Minivan Chic? 2017 Chrysler Pacifica



By: Mark Phelan/Detroit Free Press


Early talk about the ★★★★ 2017 Chrysler Pacifica minivan focused on risk. Chrysler gambled when it revived the Pacifica name and dropped Town & Country. It rolled the dice by breaking from the looks of previous minivans and announcing it will eventually discontinue the Dodge Grand Caravan.

Valid concerns, but they ignore the one sure thing in the minivan business: Chrysler knows its customers like parents know their kids’ names.

Pacifica front seats

A minivan succeeds or fails based on safety, interior comfort, convenience and features. That makes the new Pacifica king of the road.

So admire the Pacifica’s exterior while you can. Compliment its tidy dimensions and clean lines. Admire the rakish profile and character lines running stem to stern. Give the LED and taillights an appreciative glance. Because once you open Chrysler’s latest present to traveling families, you’ll forget about the gift wrapping and fixate on what’s inside the package.

Theater seats

The 2017 Pacifica uses a brand-new architecture Fiat Chrysler developed to underpin it — and probably one or more big crossovers that will debut later. A 287-horsepower 3.6-liter V6 and nine-speed automatic transmission are standard. All Pacificas have front-wheel drive. The new van is 0.8 inch longer and 0.9 inch wider than the 2016 Town & Country it replaced.

Prices start at $28,595. I tested a well-equipped Pacifica L Plus. Features included automatic parallel and perpendicular parking, adaptive cruise control, dual second-row video and touch screens with kid-friendly games, Stow ‘n Go seats that fold flat into the floor, seating for eight, under-floor storage bins in the second row, power tailgate, DVR and USB compatibility, voice recognition, dual power sliding doors, navigation, Bluetooth phone and audio compatibility and more.


It stickered at $41,975. All prices exclude destination charges.

2017 Chrysler Pacifica screen

The Pacifica competes with minivans like the Honda Odyssey, Kia Sedona, Nissan Quest and Toyota Sienna. Secondary competitors are family-oriented SUVs like the Ford Explorer, Chevrolet Traverse, Honda Pilot, Nissan Pathfinder, Hyundai Santa Fe and Toyota Highlander.

2017 Chrysler Pacifica

The vehicles exist primarily to carry six to eight passengers and their gear. Other than styling, the biggest differences between minivans and family-carrying SUVs are sliding side doors and seating that allows parents and kids to move from one row to another. Those features make minivans outstanding for families with young kids.

2017 Chrysler Pacifica

The Pacifica’s interior is spacious, roomy and comfortable. The materials look and feel good, including simple dials and buttons for audio and climate, excellent voice recognition and an easy-to-use touch screen.2017 Chrysler Pacifica

My test van had bench seats in the second and third rows, and a big console between the front seats. That layout maximizes people-carrying capacity and provides loads of storage, but eliminates the center aisle many minivans offer for easy access to all seats. The middle seats flip up easily for access to the rear. Folding both rows of seats into the floor for max cargo capacity is also easy.

Twin screens mounted in the back of the front seats can be used to play video — with wireless headphones — or to play travel games on long trips. The games include versions of Hangman, the license plate game, ticktacktoe and more. You can play against the computer running the game or versus the occupant of the other seat.

My niece, nephew and sister-in-law — who remains a kid at heart — found the games captivating. Parents are likely to find kids eager to stay in the Pacifica after they reach their destination.

The 3.6-liter V6 features fuel-saving idle stop and delivers plenty of power. The nine-speed automatic transmission shifts smoothly. The interior is quiet at highway speed.

2017 Chrysler Pacifica minivan.

The Environmental Protection Agency rates the Pacifica at 18 m.p.g. in the city, 28 on the highway and 22 combined. The key combined figure beats those of most competing minivans. The Nissan Quest achieved 23 m.p.g.

The Pacifica offers a rich range of safety features, including 360-degree parking cameras; blind-spot, cross-traffic and lane-departure alerts, and front- and rear-parking assist with automatic braking.2017 Chrysler Pacifica


It’s the state of the art in family transportation.

RHOA: S8 EP17 (Finale) Ho! Ho! Ho’s!!

Last night and final episode in a shorten season was okay. For me the night belonged to Ms Phaedra Parks , giving us Bette Davis (Is she a Evil women capable of dropping a dime on her friends? or is she a simple Christian Attorney rasing two boys on her own? ) Most of the action was centered around Phaedra( Bette’s ) Christmas Party (sponsored by Bravo-because we all know, there is no way in hell would Phaedra invite Kenya Moore to any party!) 

Kandi and Todd

The episode begins with Kandi and Todd visiting his mothers (Sharon’s) grave. Todd  was an only child . The two were very close, talking to each other daily. Kandi said, that she didn’t think Todd would make it, not only because he lost his mother but the other stress caused my Kandi’s mother.  Their son will

Damm Porsha

Kandi’s pregnancy and her sister Lauryn pregnancy has rekindled her desire to have children.  Porsha has had an issue with fibroids resulting in a miscarriage during her marriage.  With sis in tow, she meets with her OB. Before meeting with the good doctor she casually shares her plan with with Lauryn. She tells her sister if she cant have a child, her sister will carry her child for her!

Shade Alert

Porsha drops by Phaedra’s.  It seems Porsha was troubled.  (TROUBLED) there was a report online about the Feds going to Kandi’s and Todd’s home to seize Apollo’ motorcycles and other assets and she wonders how they knew to go to Kandi’s house, the Feds also visited  Peter and Cynthia’s. When Porsha asked (in a shady way) if she told the Feds?  Phaedra Davis was cool. No!

No Happy Endings

Cynthia surprises Peter with a massage. She is dressed up in a masseuse uniform.  The scene is set, massage table,candles,oils,towels with the promise of a happy ending. Peter is naked under the sheets, Cynthia  has climbed on top of him when they hear the door. Its her daughter Noelle and her dad.  They’re home early. SURPRISE!


The MAIN event

(Shade will the thrown)

With Phaedra filing for divorce ,she wants to open a new chapter in her life. It’s time for an over the top holiday party. She enlists the help of Mr Over The Top Dwight..

There are drunken elf’s. Snow Women in Short, Short Short Shorts. A Kenya like Grinch, Brother and Sister Leaks who just came from Church. An a Pimp Santa Clause.  If they had just let the camera roll during the party, the show would have been much more entertaining as there were people drunk off their asses.  Thor (Tammy) would have passed out again. DAMM!!!!!!

Everyone was invited. Tammy (Thor) brings one more scary looking child out in public.   Bob (someone bring me a comb for this scene) Whitfield has been a delight this season and seems to want to get back with Sheree.

Tammy and Bob are friends, however there is a thorn in Sheree’s  side. At one point Bob might have said that he and Tammy slept together.   SOOOOOOO  with all parties together Sheree asked Tammy did you tell Bob what went down in Miami?  She said you never slept together  Bob clearly embarrassed started fumbling. which Sheree said  “Slut got your tongue?”   Bob said no.  The two looks like they are trying to reconcile however, Sheree is dragging one foot.

Porsha and her friend came in wearing tight short shorts (Ho’s from Christmas Present)

Phaedra and Chris(Kim’s Hubby) entertains the crowd with a choreographed dance.

Nene and Gregg enters.    Nene went to sit down next to Kandi.  They have never been and will never be close.  Kandi very uncomfortable with five weeks left is not feeling Nene.   However, when she wants to be, Nene (yes I said it) can be charming.   She acknowledged there differences and made light of it. (oil and water)

The men are together and Peter asked Todd did Phaedra ever pay him. Todd said she sent half and he is over it, he has a child coming.

Kenya enters as the Grinch (very fitting)  with green make up and green hair.  She meets with the ladies and immediate stirs up shit about the Feds and the raid on Kandi’s house. She more than suggest that Phaedra did it and Cynthia adds the Feds came to her house too. Phaedra (Bette Davis) hears part of the conversation and briefly pauses and is unfazed.

Its the season finale. We learn Cynthia’s Eye Wear is doing fine.


Porsha is going to be on next seasons Apprentice

Kim Fields is going to be on Dancing with the Stars

What did you think of the commercial ?

Did Phaedra Drop a Dime?

Next week the REUNION!!!!








Mark Phelan @ Detroit Free Press Say’s 2016 Cadillac ATS-V leaves luxury rivals in dust

2016 Cadillac ATS-V Coupe

The fast and luxurious ★★★★ 2016 Cadillac ATS-V coupe continues Cadillac’s assault on the BMW M Sport and Mercedes-Benz AMG high-performance brands.

Those factory super tuners are the only other nameplates that are in the game with the sleek ATS-V. The Caddy hits 60 m.p.h. in 3.8 seconds, has a terminal velocity of 189 m.p.h. and leaves most luxury coupes in its dust.

A sweet 464-horsepower twin turbocharged 3.6-liter V6 engine, magnetic ride control, Brembo brakes, carbon fiber and plenty more goodies distinguish it from the regular ATS coupes, which top out at 321 horsepower.

ATS-V coupe prices start at $62,665 for one with a six-speed manual transmission, rev matching and no-lift shift. An eight-speed automatic transmission costs $2,000.

2016 Cadillac ATS-V Coupe

I tested a nicely equipped ATS-V with the manual transmission, Bose audio, navigation, touch screen, voice recognition, Bluetooth phone and audio compatibility, launch control, Michelin Pilot Super Sport summer tires, 18-inch aluminum wheels, front and rear parking sensors, 4G LTE Wi-fi hot spot, head-up display and more. It stickered at $73,470. All prices exclude destination charges.

Cadillac also builds an ATS-V sedan, which has more rear passenger space and performance and features essentially identical to those in the coupe. Prices start at $60,465.

The ATS-V coupe competes with cars like the BMW M4, Audi RS 5, Lexus RC F and Mercedes-Benz AMG C 63. The ATS-V stacks up with them well on paper and performs beautifully on the road.

The twin-turbo V6 delivers immediate power for confident passes and quick starts. The manual transmission’s short throws, buttery operation and light clutch make for quick, easy shifts. Its rev-matching and no-lift features are well-suited to days at the track, as are the launch control and other electronic aids.

2016 Cadillac ATS-V Coupe

The adaptive suspension’s sensors send instructions to magneto-rheological fluid in the ATS-V’s shock absorbers fast enough to change damping to suit each inch of road at 60 m.p.h. The composed ride delivered a fine combination of comfort and stability on the winding roads of the Texas Hill Country.

The ZF variable-ratio steering is precise and direct. The Brembo performance brakes have loads of stopping power.

The comfortable front seat has plenty of head and legroom and useful storage bins in the center console and hidden behind the touch screen.

My car had optional Recaro sport seats. They were comfortable, with bolsters for plenty of lateral support and a wide range of adjustments.

Cadillac’s flat-panel capacitive controls for climate control and some other functions leave something to be desired. The control for fan speed, which puts the “off” touch point in the middle of the space your finger slides across from low to fan, is mind-bogglingly poor design.

2016 Cadillac ATS-V Coupe

The voice recognition for phone calls and navigation is fast and pretty accurate, though distinguishing between “Congress” and Commerce” streets in Austin was beyond it.

The rear seat is for emergency use only. Leg room is minimal. The low roofline restricts rear headroom. The trunk is smaller than the M4, RS 5 and C63 coupes offer and has a small opening.

Motor Trend Drives the Caddy

My car had a $6,195 track-performance package that included a digital recorder for data and video, a lightweight battery and several pieces of carbon fiber trim. Unless I planned to spend lots of time on track, I’d probably leave it on the shelf and spend the money on blind-spot and cross-traffic alert, a couple of very useful features my car lacked. I’d like them to be standard in a car with significant blind spots and a base price over $60,000, but Cadillac points out that they add weight many ATS-V drivers will happily trade to save .01 second on the track or highway entrance ramp.

The ATS-V’s styling looks like its fresh out of 2025. The extreme wedge shape, short overhangs and quad exhaust pipes virtually guarantee this speedy little car will look continue to good for a long time.

2016 Cadillac ATS-V Coupe

2016 Cadillac ATS-V Coupe (Photo: Cadillac)

Behind the Wheel

2016 Cadillac ATS-V coupe

Rear-drive four-passenger luxury performance coupe

Price as tested: $73,470 (excluding destination charge)

Rating: ★★★★ (Out of four stars)

Reasons to buy: Power, handling, style

Shortcomings: Rear passenger space, audio and climate controls, trunk space

Competitive EPA fuel economy ratings

(Manual transmission models where available)

Cadillac ATS-V: 17 m.p.g. city/23 highway/19 combined. Premium gasoline

Audi RS 5: 16/23/18. Premium gasoline

BMW M4: 17/26/20. Premium gasoline

Lexus RC F: 16/25/19. Premium gasoline

Mercedes-Benz C 63 AMG: 13/19/15. Premium gasoline


Comparative base prices (excluding destination charges)

(Manual transmission models where available)

Cadillac ATS-V: $62,665

Audi RS 5: $70,900

BMW M4: $64,500

Lexus RC F: $62,400

Mercedes-Benz C 63 AMG: $63,000


Specifications as tested

Engine: 3.6L twin-turbo 24-valve V6

Power: 464 @ 5,850 horsepower @ 5,800 r.p.m; 445 pound-feet of torque @ 3,500 rpm

Transmission: Six-speed manual

Wheelbase: 109.3 inches

Length: 184.7 inches

Width: 72.5 inches

Height: 54.5 inches

Curb Weight: 3,700 lbs

2016 Mazda 6: When all you want to do is get your Zoom Zoom ! (Review)

2016 Mazda6

By: Emme Hall/

The mid-size sedan market is a crowded segment indeed. Long dominated by the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry, the segment has had to make some room lately for the refreshed 2016 Mazda6, and the Grand Touring trim line is a worthy competitor.


Engine Power Torque Transmission MSRP Price As-Tested Rating
2.5L DOHC inline-4 184 hp @ 5,700 rpm 185 lb-ft @ 3,250 rpm 6-speed automatic $30,195 $33,395 Buy it!

Visually the Mazda6 is one of the boldest out there. The front fascia has lost the traditional Mazda smiley grill and it’s replaced by a more aggressive look. The fenders flare out to accommodate the 19-inch alloy wheels, and the LED headlights add a luxury style point to the front end.

Under the hood Mazda has given us a 2.5-liter SkyActiv 4-banger, good for 184 horsepower and 185 lb-ft of torque. Power goes to the front wheels via a 6-speed shiftable automatic transmission, although a 6-speed manual is available on the Sport and Touring trims. Our GT trim gets a bump in fuel economy to 28 mpg in the city, 40 mpg on the highway, and 32 mpg combined with the optional i-ELoop system. This technology captures energy usually lost during braking and uses it to power accessories, taking a bit of load off the engine.

2016 Mazda6

Inside the design is pretty clean with excellent fit and finish. The new 7-inch touchscreen, operated by a dial on the center console, is an improvement over previous years. You get the array of expected features inside including Bluetooth, cruise control, dual climate control, and iPod connectivity. Also standard on our top of the line model are a back up camera, heated front seats, power-adjustable driver and passenger seats, and a Bose 11-speaker sound system.

The interior design is very clean and it’s a comfortable place to spend your commute. Fit and finish are excellent, one of the best in the segment, and the rear seats offer plenty of room, even for those over 6-feet tall. The trunk offers 14.8 cubic feet of space, which is less than the Accord, Camry, Nissan Altima, and Hyundai Sonata.

2016 Mazda6 interior

Behind the wheel is where the Mazda 6 really shines. This is a sedan for the practical guy or gal with a glint of driving enthusiasm in their eye. I’ve always been a fan of Mazda’s hydraulic power steering system and although this is electric and a bit too light for my tastes, it is very precise and quick with a good amount of road feel. The chassis is tuned more towards the stiff side, which may turn some buyers off, but it allows for stand out cornering. The Mazda6 loves the high revs especially when in Sport mode. The transmission allows the driver to rev all the way to the red line to eke out all 184 horses before shifting. The paddle shifters get to the next gear quickly and while the car does feel underpowered, like many Mazdas, it’s nimble quality still elicits an emotional response that is lacking from other 4-door sedans.

Of course, there is a lot of competition in this segment. The best selling Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, and Nissan Altima all have an available V6, and the Hyundai Sonata is available with a 2.0L turbo. However, the naturally aspirated 4-cylinder trim lines of the competition are all pretty close in power, fuel economy, and price and they just don’t have the same excitement about them as the Mazda6.

2016 mazda6

On the TFL Car scale of:

Buy it!

Lease it!

Rent it!

or Forget it!

The 2016 Mazda6 gets an enthusiastic Buy It! The car is well-designed and a joy to drive, while still being a practical choice for those with enthusiast leanings.

See what you think about the 2015 Mazda6 as it takes a performance lap around the TFL track.