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America on the Road
43 minutes | Jun 26, 2022
What’s Toyota’s Stance on EVs? Exclusive Interview with Toyota VP David Christ
While many automakers are putting out happy talk on the prospects of EVs, Toyota is taking a more sober, reasoned view. In this episode, we bring you our exclusive David Christ, Toyota Group Vice President. He is in charge of the Toyota brand in the U.S., and Host Jack Nerad had a chance to sit down with him for a wide-ranging exclusive interview. We think you’ll find what he has to say about electric cars and hydrogen-powered vehicles like the Toyota Mirai a breath of fresh air. In the road test segment Co-Host Chris Teague will examine the pluses and minuses of the 2022 Nissan Altima SR Midnight Edition. The Altima has always been a popular favorite in the midsize sedan category, but does it have the juice to compete with the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry? Chris Teague will have the answers. Also in the road test segment, Host Jack Nerad will take a close look at the 2022 Volvo XC40 T5 AWD Inscription. It's the top-of-the-line conventional XC40, but how does it measure up to the battery-electric XC40 Recharge? We’ll let you know in this week’s episode. In the news this week, Elon Musk says Tesla Motors will cut 10 percent of its salaried workforce because of an impending recession. We’ll have the details and our reactions to that coming up. And also in the news, experts say the nation’s electric grid needs a tuneup if we are to see a more significant number of EVs on the road. It’s a big issue that isn’t getting much attention even as many suggest the need to switch to EVs is critical. All that and more coming up in this week’s episode of “America on the Road” brought to you by Mercury Insurance and Driving Today.com.
43 minutes | Jun 19, 2022
Adding Efficiency to GM’s EVs: Closer Look at 2022 GMC Hummer EV
General Motors is in the process of reinventing itself as a major EV maker. One way it hopes to separate itself from the pack is its Ultium technology. GM’s expertise in electric vehicles is making vehicles like the new 2022 GMC Hummer EV more efficient. In this week’s episode of “America on the Road” we go behind the scenes with one of Ultium’s experts. Our special guest is Lawrence Ziehr, General Motors Ultium Energy Recovery Project Manager. In an in-depth interview, he tells Host Jack Nerad how the Ultium team gets more efficiency from its unique batteries. It’s insightful, leading-edge stuff so stick around for that. In the road test segment, Co-Host Chris Teague puts the 2022 Hyundai Kona N-Line through its paces. Is the Kona N-Line a crossover SUV? Or is it a hot hatch in disguise? Chris Teague and Jack Nerad will share their opinions on that and tell you how the Kona N-Line relates on the value scale. Also in the road test segment, Jack Nerad takes a detailed look at the 2022 Kia Sorento X-Line SX Prestige AWD. The Sorento submodel is designed to have enhanced off-road capabilities. At the same time, it is chockfull of luxury features that help make it a very attractive choice in the hotly contested three-row crossover SUV segment. In the news, some prominent carmakers are asking Congress to lift the cap on the tax credit for electric vehicle purchases. Is it a wise move that will move the needle on global climate change? Or is it a money grab by automakers looking to leverage taxpayer money into more sales for themselves? We’ll have the details and our reactions to that coming up. Also in the news, BMW has announced the test of a new battery that could offer EVs 750 miles of range on a charge. We’ll give you more on this potential breakthrough coming up in this episode of “America on the Road.”
42 minutes | Jun 12, 2022
Texas Two-Step: Getting Dirty in the All-New 2023 Toyota Sequoia
The Toyota Sequoia stood pat for over a decade, but now an all-new 2023 Toyota Sequoia is about to come to market and we’ve driven it. Host Jack Nerad got behind the wheel of several new Sequoias both on the road and off. In this episode of “America on the Road,” Nerad will give you his detailed opinions of what is expected to be a very important vehicle for Toyota. Based on the already well-regarded Toyota Tundra full-size pickup, the new Sequoia sports a powerful hybrid powertrain and a Toyota-designed infotainment system. And it has surprising off-road abilities, as Nerad will describe. Also in the road test segment, Co-Host Chris Teague will detail his weeklong test of the 2022 Ford Bronco Badlands. This off-pavement-oriented trim is one of the hot new model’s most popular, and Teague will describe how it fared in all the tests he put it through in the wilds of Maine. If you are hoping the high prices for new and used cars and trucks will end soon, you might be disappointed. In the news segment, we have the details from new J.D. Power research on how long these elevated car prices will be with us.. We will also share new details on the potential joint car-making venture that involves Honda and Sony. Is a SonyCar in your future? We have a terrific interview for you this week. Our special guests are Matt Lins and Paul Harmon, Mercedes-Benz product experts on the all-new 2023 Mercedes-Benz C-Class sedan. Host Jack Nerad recently had a chance to drive the new C-Class in San Diego County, and he was extremely impressed with the new vehicle. We will give you the insights from Mercedes-Benz’ product planners on the car in this week’s interview segment. All that and more coming on this week’s episode of “America on the Road.”
43 minutes | Jun 5, 2022
Bolt is Back! Driving the Heavily Revised 2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV
Electric vehicles continue to make news this week. In this episode we road test the heavily revised 2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV and take a long look at what many suggest is an all-electric future. Some say an electric future is inevitable but an important new study from J.D. Power shows that a big majority of Americans are still very skeptical about an EV for their households. We’ll give you a deep dive into the study’s findings in the news segment of “America on the Road.” Both Host Jack Nerad and Co-Host Chris Teague will describe their experiences in the newly changed 2022 Chevrolet Bolt EV. It has a new look inside and out, and it’s equipped with the newest Chevrolet Infotainment Plus system. Not only that, but it also has a new low price. We’ll tell you how it stacks up against the other EVs in this week’s road test segment. Also in the road test segment, Jack Nerad and Chris Teague will discuss the 2022 Volvo V90 Cross Country. It’s a vehicle that combines the attributes of an SUV with those of a station wagon. And we found it to be a breath of fresh air in a marketplace filled with cookie-cutter crossover SUVs. Our special guest this week is Derrick Ty. He's Kia Manager of Product and Pricing Strategy and an expert on the all-new 2023 Kia Sportage compact utility vehicle. Jack Nerad recently had a chance to drive the new Sportage in and around Palm Springs, California. And the drive day included a serious off-road course as well. The 2023 Sportage is trying to re-establish its off-road credentials in this all-new package, We’ll have an exclusive interview with Derrick Ty on that vehicle coming up later in the show. Finally, is your vehicle a prime target for catalytic converter thieves? That crime is up astronomically this year and we’ll have the details.
42 minutes | May 29, 2022
Secrets Revealed: Ford EV VP Darren Palmer Discusses the 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning Electric Truck
The 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning battery-electric truck is one of the most important vehicle launches of this generation. To bring you important details on the vehicle “America on the Road” Host Jack Nerad conducted an exclusive interview with Darren Palmer, Vice President of Global Electric Vehicle Programs at Ford Motor Company. To prepare for the interview Nerad drove the all-new 2022 Lightning pickup truck both on- and off-road during the vehicle’s introductory driving event near San Antonio, Texas. He even towed a horse trailer with the all-new battery-electric truck. In the interview with Darren Palmer, the Ford exec will detail how important the vehicle is to the company and what the engineering team sought to accomplish. It’s information you won’t find anywhere else. In the news, Toyota has just introduced the 2023 40th Anniversary edition of its popular and rugged 4Runner SUV, and we have details. Plus, Honda has confirmed that an all-new Honda CR-V is waiting in the wings for 2023. We’ll tell you about that, too. In the road test segment, Co-Host Chris Teague will describe his weeklong adventures in the new 2022 Subaru Forester Wilderness as he gave it the special Maine treatment. Also in the road test segment, Host Jack Nerad tells what it was like to live with the 2022 Kia Niro plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV). The vehicle’s styling and interior treatment have both grown up. See which of the three electrified Niros our host and co-host pick as the best value. All that and more coming up in the Memorial Day edition of “America on the Road.”
42 minutes | May 22, 2022
First Drive: 2022 Mazda CX-50 Takes Brand In New, Off-Road Direction
Mazda is well-known for producing vehicles with uncommon handling precision and exceptional driving feel. Now the brand is bringing those attributes to another type of motoring — off-road. It’s a departure but it tracks the rise in popularity of SUVs and crossovers. The all-new 2022 Mazda CX-50 is the standard-bearer in the move off-road. In this episode of America on the road we give the vehicle a very thorough road test in the hills outside Santa Barbara, California. Host Jack Nerad drove the CX-50 through the dirt and along the ridgelines. In the same episode, Co-Host Chris Teague tests an off-road specialist — the 2022 Toyota Tacoma TD Pro. The Tacoma has had a decades-long history as a stalwart off-road pickup, and the TRD Pro variant takes those capabilities to a new level. Continuing with the off-road theme, our special guest is David Partlow, chief engineer on the 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe. Host Jack Nerad recently had a chance to drive the plug-in hybrid version of the new Grand Cherokee outside Austin, Texas, and it was impressive. We’ll get all the details from its chief engineer in the interview segment. Photo: Jack R. Nerad In the news this week a security firm has demonstrated that Teslas’ door locks are vulnerable to hackers. We’ll give you details on that. And a prominent online retailer just dumped a big portion of its workforce as it goes through tough times. We’ll have more on that too. All that and more coming up in this episode of “America on the Road.”
43 minutes | May 15, 2022
2022 Ford F-150 Lightning First Drive: The Future Has Arrived Full Force
The first journalists have driven production versions of the 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning, and we at “America on the Road” were among them. Not only is the F-150 Lightning a remarkable vehicle that is fast, stable, and eerily silent, but it also has superpowers that have very little to do with driving. How about the ability to power your house for days if a thunderstorm knocks out your electricity? How about the ability to recharge other electric vehicles? How about the ability to weigh its own cargo? In our extensive highway driving, we tested Blue Cruise, Ford’s hands-free driving system that turns the Lightning into a semi-autonomous vehicle. And we had the chance to sample the electric pickup’s incredible acceleration. More speed is a flash away every time you push the go-pedal. We also had the chance to put the Ford F-150 Lightning through its paces on a difficult off-road course. It immediately became apparent that the Lightning’s massive instant torque teamed with its sophisticated all-wheel-drive system can make short work of even the most challenging terrain. Worried about the Lightning’s towing ability? We have you covered there as Jack Nerad took to the highway with a 5,000-pound horse trailer hooked up behind. Our interview subject this week is something we all have to be concerned with — car insurance. Justin Yoshizawa, the Director of Product Management at Mercury Insurance, sits down with Host Jack Nerad to tell us about MercuryGo, new usage-based insurance that is as simple as installing an app on your smartphone. MercuryGo takes care of the rest, saving you money every time you drive. The details on MercuryGo will probably convince you it is a no-brainer. In the road test segment, in addition to Jack Nerad’s test of the 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning, Co-Host Chris Teague puts the 2022 Ford Bronco Sport through its paces. He tells us if the Bronco Sport’s three-cylinder engine is up to the task. And he gives us his opinion on whether the smaller of the two Broncos is worthy of that legendary name. In the news, we’ll tell you which major car manufacturer is on the verge of losing its ability to offer federal tax credits on its EV and plug-in hybrid vehicles. And we will offer five commonsense tips for saving gas. That’s all this week on “America on The Road.”
43 minutes | May 8, 2022
Can You Live with the 2022 Volvo XC40 Recharge?
As more and more people consider switching from conventional vehicles to EVs, we wanted to see what it would be like to live with one of the most-appealing EVs out there. So we borrowed a 2022 Volvo XC40 Recharge and put it through a rigorous list of tasks for a week. The XC40 Recharge is Volvo’s leader in its quest to become an all-electric carmaker by 2035. The big question: is: can the average American adapt to the new lifestyle that a leading-edge EV like the XC40 Recharge requires? We’ll tell you the good and the bad of both the vehicle itself and the EV lifestyle in our special report. In the news segment, we discuss exciting development in the innovative quest to create climate-friendly fuels. One fuel we discovered is said to be created from carbon dioxide pulled from the atmosphere, resulting in a closed loop that doesn’t add incremental carbon dioxide to the atmosphere. Instead, with this potential gamechanger, it’s carbon out and carbon in. Will this breakthrough doom electric cars? Host Jack Nerad and Co-Host Chris Teague will discuss this fascinating development. Also in the news segment, Jack Nerad outlines his recent analysis of whether buying a hybrid or plug-in hybrid is a good answer to the nation’s rapidly rising fuel prices. We’ll reveal what he discovered. In the road test segment, Co-Host Chris Teague takes a long look at a very popular compact SUV, the 2022 Chevy Equinox. It’s a vehicle that doesn’t get much love from car testers, but it’s also a vehicle you and your family might cherish. Teague will give us his conclusions. And we have a terrific guest. Phillip Battista is president of dealership technologies at J.D. Power, and he and his team have just launched Shop With Ease. It’s a digital auto retailing solution that allows shoppers the ability to search, purchase, and finance vehicles without having to leave the dealer’s or manufacturer’s website. It could help you buy your next car painlessly and swiftly. All this and more coming up this week on America on the Road.
43 minutes | May 1, 2022
2022 Ford Explorer Timberline Puts Sports Back Into Sports-Utilities
After years of existing in the wilderness, Ford Motor Company is taking the midsize Ford Explorer back into the woods. And it hopes the move will help get the midsize SUV out of the woods and into the sales sunshine. We have just tested the 2022 Ford Explorer Timberline, the automaker’s newest version of its very important SUV. The goal is not only to sell Timberline models; it is also to give a new, more adventurous sheen to the Ford Explorer’s image. A “reliable-but-dull” aura doesn’t sell cars the way an adventurous image does, and that’s one of the things the Timberline brings with it. The new model is equipped with better approach and departure angles, tow hooks, all-terrain tires, and increased ground clearance. We’ll tell you if Ford has gone far enough in our review in this episode. Also in this episode, Guest Co-Host Matt Delorenzo tells us about his early drive in the all-new 2022 Toyota Tundra Capstone. It’s the pinnacle of the Tundra full-size pickup truck lineup as Toyota makes a new attempt to become more relevant in the high-volume segment that also features the Ford F-150, Chevrolet Silverado, and Ram 1500. In the news segment of this week’s show Host Jack Nerad and Guest Co-Host Matt DeLorenzo discuss General Motors’ announcement that it will build an electrified version of the Chevrolet Corvette as early as next year. We’ll give you our thoughts on that and on the fact that a full-battery-electric Chevy Corvette is also in the works. Also in the news, Lincoln has just pulled the wraps off a battery-electric SUV, and we will give you the details on that too. We also have a terrific interview this week. Our special guest is Colleen Jansen, the chief marketing officer at Chargepoint. Chargepoint is a major player in the vehicle charging industry that is vital to growing electrification, and we’ll discuss all that with her. Many EV buyers express frustration with public charging, so we’ll talk about that and other important issues concerning vehicle electrification.
43 minutes | Apr 24, 2022
Why Do Mazdas Feel So Special? Mazda Engineer Dave Coleman Reveals Secrets
Have you ever wondered why a Mazda feels like a Mazda and nothing else? We’ll have the answer for you in our exclusive interview with Dave Coleman, Mazda Vehicle Dynamics Manager. Host Jack Nerad had the chance to have a long discussion with Coleman on the recent first drive of the Mazda CX-50 crossover utility. He gave us insight into the special things Mazda does to give their vehicles an edge others lack. Among other things, he'll tell us why Mazda engineers study human calves and what they learn from that. It's a detail that will probably surprise you. And so will Mazda's philosophy about the now-popular drive modes many vehicles offer. Photo: Jack R. Nerad In the road test segment, Jack Nerad gives details on his early drive in the 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe, It’s the plug-in hybrid version of the midsize SUV. And Jeep executives say it is the most capable of all the Grand Cherokees. Is it? Nerad will give his opinion. Photo: Jack R. Nerad Also in the road test segment Co-Host Chris Teague will describe his weeklong test of the 2022 GMC Sierra Limited full-size pickup. The Sierra Limited is one of two 2022 model year Sierras coming to market. He’ll clear up the confusion on that and tell us if the Limited is the one to buy. We also have some fascinating and important news for you. Ferrari is about to introduce a vehicle that would have Enzo Ferrari rolling over in his grave, and we’ll tell you about that. Meanwhile, one state has introduced new regulations that would ban the sales of gasoline-powered cars in 2035 and beyond. We will give you the details on that and what it could mean for you. It could have giant ramifications even if you don’t live in the state.
42 minutes | Apr 17, 2022
Volvo Transforms Itself with All-New C40 Recharge EV
Volvo is turning itself into a completely new brand with a strong emphasis on EVs. The latest example of that is the all-new Volvo C40 Recharge, a vehicle we got a chance to test drive in the desert of Southern California. Kristina Vasandani, Volvo Senior Product Manager, is an expert on the C40 Recharge EV, and Host Jack Nerad got the chance to talk with her at length about the new car and how it fits into Volvo’s plans to concentrate heavily on electric vehicles. We’ll have that insightful interview for you in this week’s episode of America on the Road. It is New York Auto Show week so the new model introductions came thick and fast. In our news segment, we’ll tell you about the 2023 Toyota bZ4X electric sport-utility, the 2023 Kia Niro, the 2023 Honda HR-V, and the truly mind-boggling 1,050-horsepower Lucid Air Grand Touring Performance. Does a sedan really need 1,000 horsepower? Or 1,050 for that matter? We’ll discuss all that and the implications of what was introduced in New York including what it all means to you. In the road test segment, Co-Host Chris Teague took the wheel of the all-new 2022 Ford Maverick. Equipped with a hybrid powertrain, the base XL model could be the best automotive bargain on the road right now. Chris Teague will tell us how the small pickup worked out for his family as winter turned to spring in Maine. At the same time, Host Jack Nerad had the opportunity to drive the 2022 Toyota 4Runner TRD Pro, a sport utility that has strong off-road credentials. In the course of the rigorous test that involved a trip from Southern California to the Central Coast, he put more than 600 fresh miles on the 4Runner’s odometer. Was it up to its on-road and off-road tasks? We’ll reveal that in this week’s episode.
42 minutes | Apr 10, 2022
What Does GM-Honda Electric Vehicle Partnership Mean to You?
Two global giants that many feel are past their prime have gotten together on a major joint venture to build electric vehicles. General Motors and Honda have announced plans to codevelop a series of “affordable electric vehicles” based on a new global architecture using next-generation Ultium battery technology. GM currently uses Ultium battery tech in its just-introduced GMC Hummer EV pickup truck. The companies say they will enter into global production of millions of EVs starting in 2027. One of the first products of the collaboration will be compact crossover vehicles, one of the most popular vehicle types in the U.S. We’ll discuss what this means to you in this episode of America on the Road. If you drive a big SUV or tow a boat, you might find your next vehicle more expensive because of some revised federal regulations. We’ll tell you all about that in AOTR as well. And a major auto show has just been postponed “indefinitely” and we’ll tell you what that could mean to auto shows worldwide. This week our special guest is Jolanta Coffey, Chief Engineer on the Ford Bronco. Host Jack Nerad will talk with her about how far the Bronco has come in its first year after re-entering the market and what comes next. In the road test segment, Guest Host Matt DeLorenzo will be reviewing the all-new 2022 Kia EV6. And Jack Nerad got the chance to drive the 2022 Dodge Durango R/T, a midsize sport-utility unlike just about every other midsize SUV on the market. DeLorenzo and Nerad will discuss the merits of both. The 2022 Dodge Durango R/T Tow N Go leverages the SRT’s menacing looks, 5.7-liter HEMI V-8 performance, best-in-class towing of 8,700 lbs. and an increased top speed of 145 mph.
43 minutes | Apr 3, 2022
Ford Shows Off 2023 Ford F-150 Rattler — New, Affordable Off-Roader
Ford has just introduced a new low-priced off-road version of the F-150 pickup that is sure to be a hit. And we’ll tell you all about it in this episode of America on the Road. The 2023 Ford F-150 Rattler is a rugged, entry-level addition to the Ford truck lineup. Its standard four-wheel-drive is a tipoff to its off-road emphasis. Designed with affordability in mind, it is based on the XL series, and it leverages FX4 content. The F-150 Rattler’s list of special mechanicals includes skidplates, special off-road shocks, electronic locking rear differential, and hill descent control. The F-150 Rattler also looks the part of a canyon cruiser with a dual exhaust system, all-terrain tires, and painted 18-inch aluminum wheels. F-150 Rattler badging on the fender vents and rattlesnake-inspired graphics let others know what its intentions are. In the road test segment, Co-Host Chris Teague will offer a very special look at the 2022 Volkswagen GTI. Why is it special? Because the GTI isn’t just another press fleet car. Instead, it is Teague’s very own just-leased GTI, and he’ll give us the lowdown on its pluses and minuses. Does he have buyer’s remorse? We’ll find out in this episode. Also, in this episode, Host Jack Nerad got the chance to drive the 2022 Toyota Venza as he paid a motoring visit to two of his daughters in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area last weekend. Among other things, the Venza transported Nerad and his daughters to a college baseball game, a barbecue dinner, and a fried chicken lunch. And when he wasn’t eating, he was driving the hybrid-powered Venz all over the metroplex. How did it fare? The answer will be clear in this edition. Finally, America on the Road also has a special guest this week. Scott Caplan is co-founder of Everwash, a new company that has devised an interesting and innovative way to keep your car clean. We all wash our cars and don’t think much about it but Nerad will talk with Caplan about the ingenious business he has built revolving around car washes. That and more coming in this week’s episode of America on the Road.
42 minutes | Mar 27, 2022
Jeep’s Jim Morrison Details How Brand Will Move Forward with EVs
Jeep continues to move toward electrification while retaining all the capabilities that it is known for. The latest example of that is the 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe, a plug-in hybrid version of the new five-passenger SUV. In this episode Host Jack Nerad interviews Jim Morrison, head of Jeep in North America, about the brand’s recent efforts to add electrified versions of many of its top products. The interview was conducted as Morrison piloted Nerad around the Camp Jeep obstacle course. In it Morrison talks at length about the Jeep’s philosophy concerning EVs. It’s an enlightening 15 minutes of conversation from within a Jeep Wrangler 4xe. In the road test segment Guest Host Matt DeLorenzo takes a long look at a vehicle that he believes deserves more respect — the 2022 Toyota Prius Nightshade Edition. Once the darling of the “green set,” the Prius has taken a back seat lately, but DeLorenzo and Nerad believe it is worth a second look. Also in the road test segment, Host Jack Nerad gets behind the wheel of the 2022 Genesis G80 luxury sedan. While luxury-brand sedans aren’t as popular as they used to be Jack Nerad suggests the Genesis G80 is more than reason enough to give high-zoot sedans another look. In its quest to break into the luxury ranks dominated by Mercedes-Benz, BMW, and Audi, Genesis has filled the G80 with tons of valuable features. It could well be the best buy among all the top-of-the-line luxury sedans these days. In the news, a recently released safety study from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety finds that pedestrians need to be wary if they are near SUVs and pickup trucks, and we’ll tell you in this episode. And in the midst of the chip shortage, Volkswagen is committing a huge amount of money to electric vehicle production in North America. We have the details on what that could mean to you in the next few years. All that and more is coming up in this edition of America on the Road.
43 minutes | Mar 20, 2022
Ford Intros 5 New Mustang Models
For the 2022 model year, the Mustang will offer five new special edition models while standing pat mechanically. With no major changes this year in powertrain or suspension, the special editions should give buyers a new reason to take a look at the venerable sports model. The limited editions are designed to suit a wide variety of tastes. They include the Shelby GT500 Heritage Edition, Ice White Edition Coupe, California Special GT Performance Package, Coastal Limited Edition, and the Stealth Edition. Each model adds unique appearance items to suit their intended audiences. In our road test segment, host Jack Nerad takes a long look at the Mustang to see how it stacks up in the crazy market we now find ourselves in. Helping us sort out this crazy market is an expert on auto retailing. Marina Angelides, the chief financial officer of automotiveMastermind, is our special guest this week. She deeply understands the intersection between the car buyer and the car dealer, and she’ll help us all get a handle on what is going on as the prices of both used cars and new cars skyrocket, leaving consumers in the dust. In the car review segment of this week’s America on the Road, Co-Host Chris Teague will examine the Infiniti QX80 luxury full-size SUV. The segment has grown ever more competitive, and Teague will give his opinion on whether the QX80 is a worthy competitor for the Cadillac Escalade and Lincoln Navigator. In the news, Jack Nerad returned from the J.D. Power Automotive Summit filled with information about the current state of the industry and where it is likely to go in the future. He’ll share those insights, and Nerad and Teague will discuss the return of the much-missed Acura Integra. Can it pull Acura from its funk? That and more in this episode of America on the Road.
43 minutes | Mar 13, 2022
Can Ford Leverage the F-150 Lightning into EV Pickup Dominance?
Battery-electric pickup trucks are top of mind right now, and Ford has taken the early lead in the sweepstakes with its 2022 Ford F-150 Lightning. What does that truck deliver? And how will Ford capitalize on its early start? To answer those and other questions, Host Jack Nerad talks with Jasen Turnbull, Ford F-150 Lightning marketing manager. He’ll share details on the electric truck and answer some tough questions about EV truck capabilities. In the road test segment, Co-Host Chris Teague will put the 2022 Nissan Sentra under the microscope. With gasoline prices climbing higher every day, it is likely many consumers will turn to small, inexpensive cars like the Sentra, and Teague will share details and give his verdict on the car. Will Nerad agree? We'll see. If the Nissan Sentra isn’t for you, perhaps you’d prefer the 2022 Toyota Corolla. A heads-up competitor to the Sentra, the Corolla has long been one of the world’s most popular cars. But now it is turning over a new leaf with the sporty Corolla APEX. Host Jack Nerad had that vehicle as his test car for the week, and he and Chris Teague will share their opinions on it. Is it sporty enough? Is it a good bargain? We’ll give you our opinions in this edition of America on the Road. In the news segment, a major carmaker and a world-famous consumer electronics company are teaming up to build electric vehicles, and you could see the results of that effort soon. We’ll have the details. And in other news, Stellantis, the global conglomerate that builds Jeep, Ram, Dodge, and Chrysler vehicles, has unveiled its plans for success in the electric-vehicle age. And some of the company's goals are eye-opening, to say the least. Much more on that coming up in this, the 100th episode of America on the Road.
43 minutes | Mar 6, 2022
Will New Kia EV6 Change Brand Forever?
Kia is seeking to change the way it is perceived — shifting from being a value brand to a maker of leading-edge electric vehicles. It’s a big change, and we have one of the architects of that change as our special guest this week. Steve Kosowski is Manager, Long Range Strategy & Planning at Kia America. Host Jack Nerad had the chance to sit down for an in-depth interview with him recently. One of the subjects was the introduction of the all-new Kia EV6, the first salvo in what could be a barrage of new Kia battery-electric vehicles. And the conversation ranged far beyond Kia’s first EV in this new series to what is likely to come over the horizon. In the road test segment, Co-Host Chris Teague got behind the wheel of the all-new 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee L. It’s the first three-row Grand Cherokee, and it has all the features it needs to be a strong player in the midsize SUV segment. Chris Teague will tell us how it survived the Maine winter. Also in the road test segment, host Jack Nerad drove the 2022 GMC Sierra 1500 Limited Denali on a road trip to the Southern California low desert. The Sierra Limited lineup was designed to be a stopgap until the heavily revamped 2022 Sierra arrives. But maybe that's not giving it enough credit. Is the Limited a good bargain. After braving snow in Southern California, Jack Nerad will give you the answer. In the news, a major global carmaker shut down production after a suspected cyber attack, and we’ll have the details on what that could mean to you. Plus, a start-up electric vehicle company is having difficulty meeting expectations. Will they get back on track or will they succumb to the massive competition that is building in the EV pickup truck sector? We’ll give you our opinions.
42 minutes | Feb 27, 2022
Ram CEO Mike Koval Tells How Brand Will Compete in an Increasingly Electrified Future
For those not paying attention, Ram is on a roll. Despite inventory shortages that have plagued the industry, the truck brand finished 2021 with a sales increase. Ram brand total year sales were up 4 percent year over year, the second-best year for the brand ever. At the same time, Ram’s competitors have announced electrification efforts that could alter the balance of power in the truck segments. So how will Ram answer that? In this episode, we interview Ram brand CEO Mike Koval. He will describe Ram’s newest installment in its Built to Serve line of limited-edition trucks, which will honor firefighters, police officers, and emergency medical service providers. And he will discuss with Host Jack Nerad the ways Ram intends to move forward with electric truck models that he says will outpace those from competitors, be they established brands or startups. In the road test segment, Co-Host Chris Teague will review the Honda Passport TrailSport. The new off-road-oriented version of the crossover SUV features standard torque-vectoring i-VTM4 all-wheel drive, rugged-design tires, unique styling touches, navigation system, roof rails, and more all-terrain gear all for an MSRP of $42,470. Does it pass the Maine off-road test? Teague will give us the answer. Also in the road test segment, Host Jack Nerad will take a close look at the venerable Toyota Highlander. Long a favorite in the midsize crossover segment, the Highlander is available in conventional and hybrid versions. But which would be better for your family? Nerad and Teague give their thoughts on that thorny question and others regarding the Highlander. In the news, Tesla Motors is in even more hot water with federal safety authorities, and we’ll have the details. And if you are looking for a dependable vehicle — and who isn’t — we will have definitive information for you from a very credible source -- J.D. Power. All that and more is in this episode of “America on the Road.”
44 minutes | Feb 20, 2022
All-New Ford Bronco Raptor Lights Up 2022 Chicago Auto Show
This special edition of America on the Road includes interviews from two of the most important attendees at the 2022 Chicago Auto Show. With cool trucks the overarching theme of the show, Host Jack Nerad captured exclusive interviews with two men responsible for some of the coolest trucks on the show floor. Arie Groeneveld is the chief engineer of the just-introduced Ford Bronco Raptor high-performance desert runner. Direct from the show floor, Groeneveld and Nerad discussed the special qualities the Bronco Raptor has and detailed how Ford was able to develop it so swiftly. Far from the surf breaks of Southern California, Hiren Patel, head of Nissan’s North American design operation, sat down with Nerad to describe the development of each of Nissan’s three truck concepts unveiled at the show. The three concepts – the Project 72X, Project Hardbody, and Project Adventure – are all based on the 2022 Frontier mid-size pickup, a vehicle that Patel and his team at NDA played a primary role in designing. In the road test segment, this episode of America on the Road has some surprises for you. Our road test vehicle is the 2022 Volvo XC40 luxury SUV. The compact luxury SUV is one of Volvo’s most popular vehicles and a big player in that growing segment. But that isn’t the surprise. The unusual bonus is our test of the Airstream Pottery Barn Edition 28-foot travel trailer. Nerad and his wife Sandi recently had a chance to experience the top-shelf trailer in a funky Southern California retreat, and we tell you all about it.
42 minutes | Feb 13, 2022
Nissan Shows 3 Hot Pickup Truck Concepts at Chicago Auto Show
A number of new vehicles were just unveiled at the Chicago Auto Show, which is running right now on the Windy City’s lakefront. Among the most impressive vehicles on display are three concepts from Nissan based on the Frontier pickup. The Project 72X, Project Hardbody, and Project Adventure share the 2022 Frontier Crew Cab platform but they are designed to cater to three different mid-size truck audiences. The concept vehicles start with three different Frontier grade levels – S, SV, and PRO-4X respectively. All three combine readily available Nissan and aftermarket parts and accessories with custom-designed pieces and custom graphics. “We’re offering three looks at three styles to show how owners could modify their new Frontiers,” said Hiren Patel, project lead designer, Nissan Design America, Inc. “The common ground is that they all use their trucks as canvases for personalization.” We’ll have more details on introductions at Chicago in the news segment of America on the Road. Kia is making a concerted effort to change the way people think about the brand. It’s not that the brand needs a makeover because it has been doing very well, thank you, but it has just launched the first of what will soon be a wave of electric vehicles. And the company has to convince Americans that the value-brand they have come to trust is now a go-to source for high-tech electric vehicles. To tell us how Kia intends to do that, our guest is Russell Wager, head of marketing for Kia in America. Host Jack Nerad had a chance to catch up with him recently to get a behind-the-scenes look at what the year will bring. In the road test segment, Co-Host Chris Teague will be giving us a long look at the 2022 Mitsubishi Outlander. It shares a platform with the well-regarded Nissan Rogue, and Chris Teague will tell us how Mitsubishi has transformed the vehicle to match up with its buyers. Also in the road test segment, Host Jack Nerad just got the chance to drive the heavily revised 2022 Hyundai Kona. While not all new, the 2002 Kona has a long list of changes that make it a much better vehicle than the 2021 model. Our top news story details how car dealers are being forced to get creative about finding used cars to sell. With both new and used car inventories tight around the country, dealers are going to greater lengths than ever to get vehicles to sell. And their efforts might mean a windfall for you.
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