Articles in Behind the Wheel

Road Test and Review: Apple CarPlay iOS 11 Lane Guidance, Speed Limit Info, and Alternative Routes

Apple has released the latest and greatest version of its mobile operating system, iOS 11, which included significant updates to Apple CarPlay, Apple’s in-vehicle touch-based display interface that functions as an extension of a driver’s iPhone. We took the opportunity to spend a few weeks behind the wheel in several cars with CarPlay to gauge how well it performs.
The additions include useful features such as lane guidance, a new infobox …

Review and Test Drive: 2017 Ford Focus ST

While the words “Ford Focus” might not generate a big grin on the part of most auto enthusiasts, adding two letters – ST – will surely change that. The ST is an enthusiast’s car, fun to drive, inexpensive, and powerful.
Our Ford Focus ST arrived in with the new Triple Yellow Metallic Tri-Coat that makes the car among the most eye-catching on the road.
It comes standard with a turbocharged 2.0-liter four …

BMW: ‘We Don’t Need No Stinking Keys’

MUNICH—The first ignition keys were introduced by Chrysler in 1949, although car doors required keys prior to that time. Early innovations in car keys included jackknife-like flip keys and keys with elaborate marque’s logos on them. Starting in the mid-1990s, cars began to come with transponder keys, programmed to allow only a specific vehicle to start.
Fast forward to the early 2000s when automakers such as BMW and Mercedes-Benz introduced keyless …

Review and Test Drive: 1993 Mercedes-Benz 500SL Coupe/Roadster

One of the most beautiful cars ever built arguably was the Mercedes-Benz SL coupe, which was introduced in 1954 as the 300SL, a model known for its distinctive gullwing doors. The legendary 300SL was developed specifically for the U.S. market as the result of a suggestion by legendary European automobile importer Max Hoffman.
Hoffman, whose home and his Park Avenue Mercedes-Benz showroom were designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, was the son …

Photo Essay: The American Cars of Cuba

One of the images of Cuba ingrained in my mind is the incredible scene of classic American cars from the 1950s that continue to ply Cuban streets. Indeed, a ride in a classic American car (many serve as taxis) is a rite of passage for visitors to Havana.
It is an image Detroit should be proud of: pristine Buicks, Cadillacs, Chevys, Dodges, and Fords chauffeuring tourists around, serving as props for …

Review and Test Drive: 2017 Mazda MX-5 Miata Grand Touring RF

September signals the end of the meteorological summer season and what better send-off to summer than a Soul Red Mazda MX-5 Miata Grand Touring RF. Indeed, that’s what arrived at our offices on a warm and sunny day, perfect convertible weather.
With a striking silhouette that gives it a more coupe-like appearance than its soft-top sibling, it did raise a significant question: Is the MX-5 Miata RF a convertible or a …

Review and Test Drive: 2017 Honda Civic Si

When the bright red 2017 Honda Civic Si arrived at our offices, it stood out, and not because it was arrest-me-red. Based on the rather boldly styled 2017 Honda Civic, the Si adds a 205-horsepower turbocharged 1.5-liter four-cylinder powerplant, a six-speed manual with short-throw shifter, striking 18” wheels, and gear-limited slip differential.
Based on the Japanese automaker’s popular Honda Civic, which was introduced as an inexpensive subcompact in 1972 although it …