Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00
0:00
Available On Air Stations

Savage On Wheels

USE-KPC-SAVAGEM0104.jpg

Savage On Wheels

Mark Savage's auto review column, Savage On Wheels, looks at a new vehicle every week and tells consumers what’s good, what’s not so good, and how the vehicle fits into the marketplace. Value, simple functionality and good looks are always key components on Savage’s evaluation checklist. The Sunday column aims to give an honest account of a vehicle’s merits after a week’s test drive during which gas mileage is measured for a real-world report.

Ways to Connect
  • Genesis is all about luxury, but high-value luxury where you get more than you pay for, or expect to pay. Here in the top-level GV70 Sport Prestige, the styling is fresh, the power raw, and the cockpit elegant.
  • The new 2022 Hyundai Santa Fe excels at value, including all-wheel-drive, an 8-inch touchscreen, adaptive cruise control, all the mainline safety features, and an impressive warranty for under $40,000. XRT is all about appearances though, and there’s no increase in power from Santa Fe’s base 2.5-liter I4.
  • Toyota has been making its Sienna minivan for nearly 25 years and let’s be honest, it still looks like a minivan. But the new 2022 Sienna offers more for the environmentally conscious family: a 2.5-liter I4 hybrid power system with continuously variable transmission.
  • Electric car haters might as well tune out right now as this review of Volkswagen’s new ID.4 all-electric crossover/SUV. That’s because the ID.4 is an extremely well thought out and executed EV that most families would enjoy. Like other crossovers and SUVs it is roomy inside, offers a comfortable ride, a quiet (electrics are quiet by nature) interior, and for us Wisconsinites, there’s AWD.
  • Sedans are nearly as rare today as a functioning VHS tape player, even in the luxury market. Rarer still are sedans with all-wheel-drive and a starting price well below $50,000. I never thought I’d say this, but Lexus offers a cost leader, a high-value premium mid-size luxury sedan with its stylish ES250 AWD F Sport.
  • The 2022 Nissan Frontier has been restyled and rethought to take on the growing market of mid-size pickups ruled by Toyota’s Tacoma, going with muscular styling that has dominated the market since the 1960s.
  • Hyundai’s new Santa Cruz is a crossover’s crossover — a mix of crossover comfort and convenience and a pickup’s utility. Meshing the two most popular forms of transport today, Hyundai insists the Santa Cruz is not a pickup, but a Sport Adventure Vehicle (SAV).
  • The Kia Sorento was redesigned for 2021, along with its cousin, Hyundai’s Santa Fe. Now comes the Sorento hybrid that gets roughly 10 mpg better than the internal combustion engine (ICE) model, yet isn’t a budget buster.
  • Mixing fashion and fun in a luxury SUV/crossover is about as commonplace as legislators agreeing on something. Yet, Infiniti has done it with its new QX55 for 2022, and this comes after its launch of the near perfect QX50 for 2021.
  • Extroverts love MINI Coopers and they should — people chat you up when you’re driving a Zesty Yellow MINI Cooper S Convertible. Driving a MINI is more fun than almost anything else you can do, and this 2022 S version is frisky and the test car’s blacked-out theme ups the cute factor to about an 11.