Articles in Behind the Wheel

Review and Test Drive: 2017 Fiat 500 Abarth

The original Fiat 500 or Cinquecento, known for its appearances in multiple films including “The Italian Job,” was a rear-engine four-seat city car manufactured by the Italian automaker from 1957 to 1975. On its 50th anniversary in 2007, Fiat introduced a new 500 whose design was clearly inspired by the beloved original, this time as a somewhat larger front-engine, front-wheel drive vehicle.
The tiny 2017 Fiat 500 is offered in three …

Auto Industry Debuts Multiple New Vehicles with Apple CarPlay at LA Show

The Los Angeles Auto Show returned to the Convention Center and many automakers took advantage of the post-Thanksgiving event to introduce multiple new vehicles that will be available with Apple CarPlay, Apple’s in-vehicle touch-based display interface that functions as an extension of a driver’s iPhone.
Virtually every car manufacturer offers select vehicles that support CarPlay, including Acura, Aston Martin, Audi, BMW, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, Chrysler, Citroën, Fiat, Ford, Honda, Jeep, Lincoln, …

Why Electric Vehicles May Have the Edge When It Comes to Cost of Ownership and Operation

While electric vehicles still look expensive, when compared to more traditional petrol-powered vehicles, their prices have come down in recent years. But that’s only half the story: their total cost of ownership is significantly lower as is the cost to power the vehicle.
More affordable EVs have come onto the market including the 220-mile (354-kilometer) range Tesla Model 3 (the MSRP is $35,000 although the average sale price is expected to …

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 …