Posts Tagged SUV

2010 Mercury Mountaineer

The 2010 Mercury Mountaineer is a midsize SUV, identical to the Ford Explorer with some differences in exterior styling and equipment differences, the Mountaineer is basically an another version of the Explorer with extra premium features and softer suburban look. The Mercury Mountaineer is optional Four-Wheel-Drive SUV, while Ford Explorer is FWD vehicle. The Mountaineer offered decent off-roading capability along with good space for a medium-size family (with optional third-row seats), decent handling and ride quality. The Mercury Mountaineer is available in two trim-levels; base and Premier, rear-wheel drive is standard on both trims, with all-wheel drive optional.

The 2010 Mercury Mountaineer is offered with two engine options; 4.0-liter V6 and 4.6-liter V8. The 4.0-liter engine makes 210 horsepower and 254 pound-feet of torque. The optional 4.6-liter V8 engine puts out a peppier 292 horsepower and 300 lb-ft of torque. A five-speed automatic transmission is standard with the V6, while the V8 comes with a six-speed automatic transmission. Both rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive are available with either engine. The V6 achieves 14 mpg in the city and 19 mpg on the highway while the V8 consumes 15 mpg in the city and 21 mpg on the highway.

The 2010 Mercury Mountaineer base model comes equipped with cruise control, full power accessories, a six-way power driver seat, a leather-wrapped tilt steering wheel with audio controls, and a stereo with a CD player and auxiliary audio jack. There are other optional features available as package called “Five-Passenger Value Package” and “Seven-Passenger Value Package”. The Five-Passenger Value Package adds driver memory functions, rear manual climate controls, leather upholstery, reverse parking sensors, running boards, dual-zone automatic climate control, power-adjustable pedals, heated power front seats, satellite radio and the Sync voice-activated communication and entertainment system. The Seven-Passenger Value Package includes the same features plus a 50/50-split manual-folding third-row bench. Sunroof is also available as stand-alone option.

The Mercury Mountaineer Premier comes standard with rear parking sensors, aluminum roof rails, leather upholstery, aluminum-trimmed heated exterior mirrors with puddle lamps, 18-inch chrome wheels, heated power front seats, a sunroof, dual-zone automatic climate control, rear manual climate controls, driver memory functions and Sync. Optional features on the Premier model include 20-inch wheels, tow package, a power-folding third-row seat, power running boards, a rear-seat entertainment system, second-row fold-flat bucket seats and a voice-activated navigation system with DVD audio and video capability and an internal hard drive.

Category › Car Reviews

Title › 2010 Mercury Mountaineer

Standard safety equipments include antilock disc brakes and stability control with a rollover sensor, front-seat side airbags and first- and second-row side curtain airbags.

The interior looks neat and well arranged with the use high quality of materials. Second-row passengers have good leg and headroom, but the third row is narrow and low to the floor, tall adults might find the third row uncomfortable over long drive. The Seven-passenger Mercury Mountaineers can hold 83.7 cubic feet of luggage, while the five-passenger versions can hold 85.8 cubic feet.

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2011 Jeep Liberty

The Jeep Liberty was launched to replace America’s populer compact SUV the Cherokee. Be it on mud or snow, it has the ability to compete with any other compact SUV.

The new 2011 Jeep Liberty is much improved in terms of riding and handling on the road. Old soft look has been replaced with more rugged look. The new Liberty gets revised independent front and multilink rear suspension. The Jeep Liberty comes in three trim-level Sport, Renegade and Limited editions.

The Jeep Liberty comes with a 3.7-liter, V6 engine with 210-horsepower that achieves 16-mpg in the city and 22-mpg on the highway. The all-wheel-drive version achieves 15-mpg in the city and 21-mpg on the highway. A four-speed automatic transmission with overdrive is standard and a six-speed manual transmission is optional.

The new Jeep Liberty offers more passenger room and features. Standard equipments are body-colored grille, front and rear bumpers, and moldings, remote keyless entry and power-operated and heated foldable side mirrors. Buyers can opt for 16-inch, 17-inch or 18-inch wheels. Other optional features are express-up windows, roof rails, full-open canvas roof system and chrome grille.

Category › Car Reviews

Title › 2011 Jeep Liberty

Standard safety features are smart key that immobilizes the engine in a theft attempt, side curtain airbags, all-disc antilock braking system, electronic stability control with electronic roll mitigation and all-speed traction control. A parking assist system which includes a sonar-based warning system with audible and visual alerts is optional.

The new Jeep Liberty has got a bigger cabin. Dashboard controls are well laid-off and easy to use. Both front and rear legroom and shoulder room are adequate in the Liberty. The loading space is big enough with 31.5 cubic feet of loading capacity. On folding the rear seats the loading space increases up to 64 cubic feet.

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2011 GMC Acadia

The 5-door GMC Acadia is one of the best-looking crossover SUVs to debut recently.

2011 gmc acadia 2011 gmc acadia

2011 gmc acadia

The Acadia is well-proportioned overall, with a non-fussy style and just the right size of grille and headlights at the front.

The GMC Acadia is a midsize crossover SUV that has three rows of seats, a good driver seat view of the road, generous cargo room, commendable road manners and pleasing V6 power. The Acadia’s fuel economy rating was 18 miles per gallon in city driving and 26 mpg on the highway.


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Three trim levels are offered: SLE, SLT1, and SLT2. All are available in front- or all-wheel-drive configurations. The only Acadia engine is a 275-horsepower 3.6-liter V6 with variable valve timing with 6-speed, automatic transmission that gets power to the wheels quickly, particularly in the low gears. Maximum torque rating is 251 lb-ft at 3200, and some 90 percent of the peak torque can be had between 1500 rpm and 5800 rpm.

The standard features includes air conditioning with rear controls, power outside mirrors, cruise control, tilt/telescoping steering wheel, power windows, programmable door locks with remote keyless entry, four-way manually adjustable driver’s seat with lumbar adjustment, AM/FM/CD/MP3 audio with XM Satellite Radio, automatic headlamps, daytime running lights, rear spoiler, roof rails and P255/65R18 tires on painted aluminum wheels.

Category › Car Reviews

Title › 2011 GMC Acadia

GMC Acadia comes loaded with safety equipment, including side-curtain airbags, side-impact airbags for torso protection and StabiliTrak electronic stability control and other active safety features that help the driver avoid accidents.

The GMC Acadia is one of the roomiest crossover utility vehicles in its class, with seating for up to eight passengers. The second-row seats slide 4 inches fore and aft and easily flip up and out of the way for access to the third-row seats. Behind the third row, there is a respectable amount of luggage room.

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2010 Land Rover LR2

Rivals to the new Land Rover LR2 compact SUV include the BMW X3 and Acura RDX, but they can’t top

2010 land rover lr2 2010 land rover lr2

2010 land rover lr2

the snob appeal of the Land Rover, which will be instantly recognized at every upscale country club parking lot.

The early 2008 LR2 replaces the Land Rover Freelander, which was popular in Europe but flopped in America. The $33,985 LR2 should


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do much better here because it has more power, room, luxury and versatility.

Potent Volvo Engine

Ford owns Land Rover and Volvo, so the LR2 has a 3.2-liter 230-horsepower inline 6-cylinder engine from Volvo’s S80 large premium sedan. The smooth aluminum engine is sophisticated, with dual overhead camshafts, 24 valves and variable valve timing.

The compact engine is mounted transversely—or sideways—which seems like odd positioning for a Land Rover engine. But it has enough go-power to give the 4,255-pound LR2 strong acceleration for fast merges and passing on highways.

However, with all that weight, fuel economy is only an estimated 16 mpg in town and 23 on highways. And premium gasoline is recommended.

Tedious Push-Button Start

It’s annoying to start and stop the engine. It haspush-button starting, like some other new vehicles. But, before pushing the button to start the engine, one must put a foot on the brake and jam the key fob into a narrow, almost invisible dashboard slot near the steering wheel instead of just putting the fob anywhere in the vehicle—which is the case with other push-button-start vehicles.

Category › Car Reviews

Title › 2010 Land Rover LR2

To stop the engine, you must push the key fob farther into the slot to remove it—and then push the button again. (Land Rover says all this keeps the fob’s battery charged.)

The only transmission offered is a responsive 6-speed automatic, but it perfectly suits the LR2. This is just too plush and prestigious a vehicle to have a manual gearbox for the American luxury vehicle crowd.

Rather Plain Styling

The styling is rather plain, but the LR2 has a nice planted stance. Land Rover and the larger Range Rover models always have been too boxy to win beauty contests.

But the LR2 is nicely sized and its clamshell hood, jeweled headlights, side air intakes and slotted grille give it a strong Land Rover identity.

Steering is quick, and the turning circle is tight. Handling is good for a rather tall SUV, with little noticeable body sway when zipping through curves. The fully independent suspension provides a pleasant ride, although there is mild pitching on some surfaces. Stops are made quickly. The brake pedal has the right amount of firmness, although some may feel it’s touchy.

Sophisticated All-Wheel Drive

The LR2 has no low-range gearing usually needed for good off-road prowess. But it has a sophisticated all-wheel-drive setup and a Terrain Response system controlled by a console switch. The system alters powertrain and suspension calibrations to accommodate normal driving, grass, gavel, snow, mud, ruts and sand.

The all-wheel drive mainly works in front-wheel-drive mode with only a small amount of power shot to the rear wheels during most driving conditions—until more rear-wheel power is needed.

2010 land rover lr2

2010 land rover lr2

Well Equipped

Anti-lock brakes, traction/anti-skid control with rollover sensors and hill-descent control are standard. So are many comfort, convenience and safety items, which include front-seat side airbags and side-curtain airbags with rollover deployment.

Among the few options is a $700 package containing heated front seats and a heated windshield. A $3,500 technology package has a navigation system, upscale sound system, satellite radio, rear radio controls and a wireless cell phone link.

2010 land rover lr2

2010 land rover lr2

Narrow Rear Door Openings

It takes some extra effort to slide in and out, but occupants sit high. Outside door handles are large, but narrow door openings inhibit back-seat entry and exit.

The cargo opening is high, but there’s only a moderate amount of cargo space for an SUV unless the rear seat backrests and bottoms are folded forward, which is easily done.

While it feels solidly built, the LR2 is too new to have a track record. And reliability has been an issue with some Land Rover and Range Rover models.

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2010 Jeep Compass

If you have a vehicle with the same iconic brand name recognition as Coca-Cola, why not take advantage of that

2010 jeep compass 2010 jeep compass

2010 jeep compass

name? The Chrysler unit of DaimlerChrysler has done just that by adding the car-like 2007 Compass to its Jeep line.

Chrysler knew that expanding the market for Jeep would eventually involve introducing more car-like models, and that would be tricky


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if it didn’t want Jeep to lose its go-anywhere “trail-rated” off-road reputation.

That reputation helps distinguish Jeeps from many other SUVs, although only a small percentage of SUV owners go off-road or do serious off-road driving. It’s the fact that those owners could tackle rugged terrain with a Jeep that adds to the appeal of this SUV.

Also, Chrysler needed a new vehicle on which to base a car-like Jeep so it wouldn’t have to spend a small fortune developing an all-new entry. One really didn’t become available until the compact Dodge Caliber crossover vehicle (some call it a car or station wagon) went on sale this year.

The Compass 4-door hatchback is based on the utilitarian Caliber 4-door hatchback. So it’s no

Category › Car Reviews

Title › 2010 Jeep Compass

surprise that both are made in the same Belvidere, Ill., plant that long made the discontinued Dodge Neon.

Jeep Styling Cues

The 4-door Compass has sufficient Jeep styling cues, such as round headlights, a 7-slot grille and trapezoidal wheel openings. But it looks sleeker than other Jeeps with its new silhouette, which includes a steeply raked windshield. Rear door handles are integrated in the rear roof supports, as such handles have been for years in several Nissan SUVs such as the Pathfinder.

Who will buy a Compass? Jeep is aiming it at folks who want Jeep’s free-spirited image, but also the comfort and roominess of a modern, space-efficient compact car/crossover—along with fairly good fuel economy.

2010 jeep compass

2010 jeep compass

Average Highway Performance

Powering the new Jeep is a 2.4-liter 172-horsepower 4-cylinder engine that DaimlerChrysler jointly developed with Mitsubishi and Hyundai. It provides good in-town acceleration, but just average highway performance because it isn’t very large and the Compass is fairly heavy for its size at 3,071 to 3,351 pounds, depending on the trim level.

Estimated fuel economy doesn’t touch the 30 mpg level, which would be a good selling point. Rather, weight holds down estimated economy to 25 mpg in the city and 29 on highways with the standard 5-speed manual gearbox and 23 and 26 with the responsive continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) that was in my test Compass.

The CVT costs $1,000 for the base Sport trim level and $1,150 for the upscale Limited version. Only 87-octane gasoline is required.

2010 jeep compass

2010 jeep compass

Significant Safety Features

All Compass trim levels have standard anti-lock brakes with a brake assist feature for surer panic stops and traction control and an anti-skid system with rollover sensors. Also standard are side-curtain airbags, although front-seat side airbags cost $250.

Handy items include a console sliding armrest that moves 3 inches for shorter drivers and has a flip pocket for storing a cell phone. There’s also an available 115-volt power outlet, grab handles above all doors with clothes hooks on the rear handles and a removable self-charging lamp in the roof above the cargo area that can be used as a flashlight.

The open storage bin above the glove box may seem like a good idea, but items in it will end up on a front passenger’s lap or the floor during a sudden stop.

The Limited adds air conditioning, cruise control, leather upholstery, heated front seats, height-adjustable driver’s seat, fold-flat front seat, reclining rear seat and 18-inch tires—along with more exterior glitz such as bright front/rear fascia overlays.

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