2020 Lemon Aid New Car Reviews - Luxury

 

Acura TLX  Cadillac CT6  Lexus ES  Nissan Maxima 
Audi A4  Genesis G70  Lexus IS  Tesla Model 3 
BMW 3-Series      Genesis G80  Lincoln Continental  Toyota Avalon 
BMW 4-Series 

Infiniti Q50 

Lincoln MKZ  Volvo S60 
Buick Regal  Infiniti QX50  Mercedes-Benz C-Class  Volvo V60 
Cadillac CT5  Jaguar XE     

2020 Nissan Maxima

 


 

What’s new
All 2020 models feature rear intelligent emergency braking, traffic sign recognition, intelligent engine braking, lane departure warnings, an integrated dynamics control module and intelligent trace control. 

Comments
With the Maxima, Nissan changed direction and moved away from the frumpy-retro styling exemplified by the previous-generation Sentra and Altima, towards radical-futuristic design. The car is striking, and distinctive but you can’t really call it pretty.
The Maxima jettisons its avantgarde look inside, which displays clean, contemporary design. The elegant dashboard houses big, clear gauges and logical controls. After several years of poorly appointed interiors, Nissan is trying to make amends as the appearance and apparent quality of the interior components of the Maxima are impressive.
The sole engine for the Maxima is the 3.5L V6 that powers most large Nissans. Power reaches the front wheels exclusively via a CVT.
The Maxima had long been a wallflower in Canada, with sales of just 971 sold last year, down from 1357 units in 2018 and 2200 in 2016. It is unlikely that the Maxima will be replaced once the current model reaches the end of its run. 

Pricing
Even the base Maxima is very nicely equipped and buyers really don't need to migrate to pricier trims. The SR model, with a wealth of additional features including larger wheels and tires, is priced to reflect its additional content. The range-topping Platinum model features a plethora of comfort and convenience features for a tempting price. The Maxima is an exceptional lease deal for 2020. 

Reliability
Incomplete reliability information available due to limited sales. The Maxima shares components with the previous-generation Atlima, which was rated average for reliability. Premature CVT transmission failures are still being reported.     

Specifications


Body Style: 4SD
Occupants: 2/3

Engines:
3.5L-V6 (300 HP)

Transmissions: CVT
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy:  11.6/100 km

Highway Fuel Economy: 7.9L/100 km


Active Safety Features: Standard forward collision, include pedestrians, autonomous emergency braking, including reverse, blind spot, rear cross traffic, driver awareness and lane departure monitors and adaptive cruise control  


Additonal airbags: Rear seat outboard side airbags

Warranty: 3/60,000, 5/100,000
Current Generation Debut: 2015
Country of Origin:  United States

IIHS Ratings:

Sm. Front Driver: G

Mod. Front: G

Side: G

Roof: G

Sm. Front Pass.: G

Head/Seat: G

Rear: G

Headlight: A

NHTSA Rating:


2020 Tesla Model 3

 


 

What’s new
Tesla changes its pricing and specifications constantly, making impossible to state what has been introduced for a specific model year.   

Comments
The Tesla 3's front end, a tribute to the Renault Caravelle, blends with refreshingly clean and and modern lines to make for a very elegant car. Inside, there is no conventional dashboard on the 3, Drivers face a low-profile door-to-door trim panel, on the centre of which is clipped a large format touchscreen that contains all the controls for the car. The touchscreen is innovative and multi-configurable but does impose a learning curve on all initial users and may be a deal breaker for some intenders. Even simple tasks, like adjusting the ventilator fan or opening the glovebox, requires interacting with the touch screen. Like other Tesla products, interior fit and finish are not up to standards expected for the price asked. The cabin is roomy for front seat occupants and the fixed glass roof panel (mandatory) lends an airy feel to the car. Rear seat riders are a bit of an afterthought on the 3. The rear seat is oddly located in its space and legroom is very tight. Those intending to carry adults back there should try the back seat before they buy. Good trunk space for a car of this size but the trunk opening is small. There is a secondary trunk under the hood.  
The base 3 offers 402 kilometres of range; about the same offered by the Hyundai Kona (415 km), and the Chevrolet Bolt (417 km). Tesla offers two all-wheel drive variants, the Long Range (518 km), and the Performance (499 kilometres). Impressive acceleration with vivid passing power. The 3 handles well, with very little lean in curves. The steering is overassisted and lacks the degree of feedback expected of a car in the luxury segment. Hard brake pedal feel and braking performance is sufflicient but not noteworthy. In typical driving, the regenerative braking system provides most of the braking action.  

Pricing
Limited model range, with just one rear-wheel drive and two all-wheel variants offered. All three drive variants are offered in a single trim which includes Tesla's "Autopilot" limited self-driving system. Tesla's "Full Self Driving" system is a $9200 option as of January 2020. All 3s are equipped with a fixed glass roof panel, which must pad the invoice, add to weight and be a deal breaker for those wanting to avoid the sun. Outrageous (up to $2600) charges for metallic paint. There were long waiting lists for the 3 when it was introduced but cars ordered in January 2020 should arrive in about six weeks. Big tax-payer subsidies are available in Quebec ($8000) and British Columbia ($5000), and the Federal Government offers an extra spiff of up to $5000. The Federal subsidy may spur sales outside of Quebec and B.C. and the rebate can actually be added to those offered by Quebec and British Columbia. As of January 2020, the base model was the single motor, rear-wheel drive Standard Plus rated at 402 kilomtres in range. Stepping up to the Long Range model adds a front-mounted motor and drive unit that turns the 3 into an all-wheel drive vehicle, increases the range to 518 kilometres, the price to $65,990 and reduces 0/100 km/h acceleration from 5.6 seconds to 4.6 seconds. The Performance variant reduces accleration to 3.45 seconds, reduces the range to 499 kilometres and increases the price to $75,990. The Tesla website, which is intended to be the chief purchase portal for the car, lacks sufficient solid information to permit those buying the car to make an informed purchase. Tesla's website would not offer monthly payment tems in late March 2020.     
Reliability

New model, no data available. Below averge reliaility is expected. Initial body faults and assembly gaffes appear to have been corrected. 

Specifications


Body Style: 4HB
Occupants: 2/3

Engines:
One or two electric motors. 386 and 499 kilomere range. 
 
Transmissions: None
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive, all-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy:  n.a.

Highway Fuel Economy: n.a


Active Safety Features: AutoPilot (standard): Active cruise control with vehicle and pedestrian protection and auto stop plus Lane keep assist. Optional Self-Driving reported to be automous on multi-lane divided highways. 

Additonal airbags: no info available

Warranty: 4/80 000, 8/192 000 (battery and powertrain)
Current Generation Debut: 2018
Country of Origin:  United States

IIHS Ratings:

Sm. Front Driver: G

Mod. Front: G

Side: G

Roof: G

Sm. Front Pass.: G

Head/Seat: G

Rear: G

Headlight: G

NHTSA Rating:


2020 Toyota Avalon

 


 

 

What’s new
No changes of note for the Avalon in its second year on the market. Toyota announced an all-wheel drive Avalon but it is unlikely to happen when even the front-wheel drive model is struggling for sales.   

Comments
Though it has never been a market success in Canada, the Avalon has always been a very competent conveyance. Still stuck in the virtually non-existent market niche between a top-spec Camry and the Lexus ES350, the Avalon, with 405 units sold in 2019, has not taken the market by storm. Toyota will only release a new Avalon to a dealer if it receives a "sold" order. 
As for the car itself, the Avalon Limited driven at briefly by the APA was a delight. Its cabin is a symphony of sumptuous leather, matte soft-touch surfaces and genuine wood, all fashioned into shapes that border on the avant-garde. Crisply marked gauges, a large info screen and logical controls make life easy for the driver. Seating is very supportive front and rear and rear seat legroom is impressive. One journalist wanted to grab the keys to the Avalon and set off for Florida, convinced it would be a peerless long-distance ride.
While many luxury cars adopting four-cylinder turbo engines for packaging and government fuel test cycle score reasons, the Avalon has retained its 3.5L V6, which is delightfully refined in normal driving but emits a feral wail when pushed hard. The conventional eight speed automatic transmission in the Avalon is smooth and responsive. While the steering is a bit light, it holds its line well and does have some heft as it is moved off the centre position. The ride-handling compromise Toyota arrived at for the Avalon combines ride compliance and handling confidence in a way that will please most buyers.

Pricing

The base Avalon XSE is nicely equipped but does not have leather upholstery, disappointing in a luxury car. The Limited trim upgrade includes leather, navigation, real wood trim, a heated steering wheel and a memory system, at a fair price and results in a very luxurious car. The Avalon is an exceptional lease value for 2020. 
Reliability
New model, not rated. Predicted reliability is above average, like the previous generation fo Avalon. The use of a normally-aspirated engine and conventional hydraulic automatic transmssion should lead to better durability than if the car was powered by a turbocharged engine or if the car was equipped with a dual clutch transmission or a CVT. 

Specifications


Body Style: 4SD
Occupants: 2/3

Engines:
3.5L-V6 (301 HP)

Transmissions: 8A
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy: 10.9L/100 km
Highway Fuel Economy: 7.6L/100 km
Active Safety Features: Standard forward colision warning, including pedestrians, lane departure, blind spot and rear cross traffic warnings, a lane centring system and an adaptive cruise control system 

Additional airbags: Knee airbags for both front occupants

Warranty: 3/60,000, 5/100,000

Current Generation Debut: 2019

Country of Origin: United States


IIHS Ratings:

Sm. Front Driver: G

Mod. Front: G

Side: G

Roof: G

Sm. Front Pass.: G

Head/Seat: G

Rear: G

Headlight: P

NHTSA Rating:


2020 Volvo S60/V60

 


 

 

What’s new
S60 and V60: The T8 plug-in hybrid (PHEV) is new for 2020. The 60s are subject to numerous minor trim and packaging shuffles this year.   

Performance
Our V60 Cross Country was powered by a 250 horsepower, 2L turbocharged four that Volvo refers to as T5. From a smooth, linear throttle tip-in to maximum acceleration, the T5 engine is quick, eager and flexible. What it isn’t, except at idle or when cruising, is smooth and quiet. Whether accelerating leisurely in town or pushed hard at highway speeds, engine noise from the T5 is too prominent for a luxury car. While it could be difficult to alter the sound profile of the engine, it should be easy enough to stuff in enough sound absorbing materials to prevent the din from reaching the cabin. While excess engine noise in a luxury car powered by a high-powered small-capacity engine is not unique to Volvo, it is disappointing. Thrilling sounds (BMW’s normally-aspirated straight six) or power unit serenity (the old Jaguar V8) was traditionally a key reason for stepping up to a luxury car, is rapidly evaporating in the luxury class. 
The T5 engine is hooked up to a conventional eight-speed automatic transmission that ably harnesses the output of the engine, providing enough gears for quick low-speed acceleration and relaxed cruising. Observed fuel economy of 12.9L/100 km during early winter conditions was heavier than expected and shows the engine is meant to flatter the U.S. EPA fuel economy test cycle rather than to deliver real-world fuel economy benefits to owners.
The Volvo’s steering feels meaty with good heft and tracks true at highway speeds.
The brakes are nicely weighted, easily modulated and very strong, with no lost motion.
Control weights for throttle, brakes and steering are all similar and all responses to driver inputs are measured and predictable.
Volvo must have spent a great deal of time honing the ride-handling balance of the V60 Cross Country, as the car feels unflappable on the road.
Small door windows and the rising line of the cargo area glazing combine to create outward visibility that is less than panoramic. Large door mirrors, a comprehensive 360 degree camera system and blind spot and rear cross traffic monitors meld together to help compenstate for the limited visibility.

Comments
Like the XC90, S90, V90 and XC60, the new S60 and V60 are built on Volvo's Scalable Product Architecture. The sedan and wagon are both very elegant. It appears that the recently introduced XC40 was both a rip in Volvo's style continuum and fortunately, an anomaly. The V60 is built in Belgium but the S60 sedan is sourced from Volvo's new U.S. factory.
Volvo has become a master at using the same components across their model range. XC90, XC60, S90 and V90 owners will be very familiar with the gauges, touch screen, audio, climate controls as well as the front seats of their new S60s and V60s. The cabins of the new cars is a vision of restrained elegance and are assembled from very attractive components. Seating, a Volvo hallmark, is very comfortable. Space is very good up front but rear seat legroom should be better in a car this big. The raised ride height combined with a regular station wagon cabin height make for awkward ingress and egress on the V60 Cross Country, especially for rear seat occupants. 

Pricing

The V60 wagon is priced $1500 higher than an S60 sedan of the same trim level. On the S60, the base T5 Momentum, with heated front power seats and forward collision warning, autonomous emergency braking and a lane keep assist stystem, is nicely equipped. The $2600 Momentum Plus package is needed to get blind spot monitors or to be able to order the the Momentum Pro Assist system with autonomous lane centering and adaptive cruise control. limited self driving system. On the S60, moving up from the front-wheel drive T5 Momentum to the all-wheel drive T6, costs $5000. The range-topping Inscription trim, with Nappa leather, real wood trim, ventilated front seats and a number of comfort and convenience items, is good value. The Premium package is reasonably priced but the Premium Plus package is overpriced. The PHEV T8 is priced $14,000 higher than a T6 R-Design and the Polestar costs $7400 more that a similarly-equipped T8. The all-wheel drive V60 Cross Country T5 is priced $3000 more than the front-wheel drive V60 T5. The Volvo S60 T6 Inscription is priced about the same as the Audi A4 Technik but offers more power, a much more contemporary design and you will not see a car just like yours on every street corner. The 60 series cars are exceptional lease values for 2020. 

Reliability
New vehicle, not rated. Complex supercharged and turbochared T6 engine. Four year/80,000 km warranty with no additional powertrain waranty. Some engine troubles have been reported and electrical glitches are common. Leasing the S60-V60 for no longer than the warranty is recommended.

Specifications


Body Style:  4SD, 4SW
Occupants:  2/3
Engines:
2 L-4 T (250 HP), 2 L-4 T S (316 HP)*, 2 L-4 T PHEV (400 HP, 415 HP Polestar)
Transmissions: 8A 
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive, all-wheel drive*

City Fuel Economy: 11L/100 km
Highway Fuel Economy: 7.4L/100 km
Active Safety Features: Standard forward collision warning, autonomous emergency braking and a lane keep assist system. Optional blind spot and rear cross traffic monitors, a lane centring system and adaptive cruise control

Additional airbages: No information is available
Warranty: 4/80,000 with no additional powertrain warranty
Current Generation Debut: 2019
Country of Origin: Belgium and United States

IIHS Ratings:

Sm. Front Driver: G

Mod. Front: G

Side: G

Roof: G

Sm. Front Pass.: G

Head/Seat: G

Rear: G

Headlight: M

NHTSA Rating:


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