Expert Advice |  the car in question

Expert Advice | the car in question

Our contributor answers questions from readers.

Posted yesterday at 11:45 am

eric lefrancois

eric lefrancois
special collaboration

a faithful

Q: I am looking for a small all-wheel drive car. I live in Montreal (and want to shovel less) and the chalet is in hilly terrain. I keep my cars for a long time. I’m a Toyota fan, but the CH-R doesn’t come with all-wheel drive. So, Kona, HR-V? Other suggestions? — Line B.

A: If you want to stay loyal to Toyota, we suggest you take a close look at the Corolla Cross. Especially since this model will be offered in the fall with a hybrid motor (not rechargeable). You might also consider the Subaru Crosstrek for the quality of its four-wheel drive system, as well as the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross, a vehicle that offers attractive value for money (all-wheel drive as standard) and a warranty that’s likely to reassure. you (10 years on the powertrain). As for its other two options, the Kona has several draws, but service mechanics are slow and trunk volume is tight. As for the HR-V, it will undergo a full test bed next week. It is a new generation (reliability file still virgin), more wrapped up, more expensive and less intelligent than the model it replaces.

To end the Volt


the chevy volt

Q: I have always believed that the system used by GM’s Volt would be the system of choice before we had enough EV range (600-800km) for people to buy it. A range of 70 to 100 km (rechargeable) for close trips and a generator that charges at maximum efficiency for long distances. How do you explain the abandonment of this system? —Richard G.

A: Even today, many consumers find it difficult to understand this decision by General Motors. And this misunderstanding in this file, like so many others, is a matter of communication. The Volt was a great idea technologically and, as you point out, an excellent ambassador for introducing consumers to electric propulsion. The main reasons that led to the scrapping of this technology were: its profitability, its low commercial success and, above all, its quickly reached limits. On this subject, note that the Voltec architecture was compatible with a small aerodynamic car. It could not be adapted to an SUV the size of an Equinox for example. The latter would have required a range extender (read gas engine) that was more powerful, heavier (required to add a larger gas tank) and even more expensive to produce.

system prisoner


The CarPlay infotainment system

Q: We regularly hear negative reviews about the infotainment systems in some new cars. Is it possible to replace this one with another? — Marc-André L.

A: Unfortunately not. For almost ten years, Google and Apple have each launched their own standard (Android Auto and CarPlay) to use their software through the vehicle control screen and the driver’s mobile phone. The so-called “closed” systems that allow the computer giants to maintain control of the data collected from users. This is where the battle begins. Many manufacturers prefer “open” systems to maintain control of their valuable data.

who pressions


The Acura RDX

Q: Owner of a 2013 Acura RDX, 155,000 km, I planned to keep my car for another two to three years and then replace it with an equivalent electric car in terms of comfort, reliability and safety. My trusted mechanic informed me this week that I will have to consider expensive repairs (steering, AC, body) in 10-12 months. So I have a little time to replace my vehicle, but not as long as I would like. Buying an electric car seems unrealistic to me in this time frame.

Is it an option to lease a gas car for three years and then buy an electric car? and can it be cheap? Would it be more interesting to buy a gasoline car (new or used) with the intention of reselling it after three years? and can it be cheap? To take into account, my height, 1.96 m. Midsize sedans are not for me. What scenario to consider? What SUV models might be right for me? —Jean-Pierre B.

A: The problem at the moment is the availability of vehicles (gas or electricity). Considering the sometimes unreasonable cost of multiple used vehicles, you’re better off heading to renting a new vehicle and ideally a plug-in hybrid, given your intention to make the jump to electric in the future. This technology bridges the gap between the old and the new world, as it allows the battery to be recharged not only by the internal combustion engine, but also from a power outlet, which allows driving in “all-electric” mode for about fifty kilometers . The problem is that a plug-in hybrid SUV isn’t very cheap to buy, nor is it necessarily immediately available. At more reasonable prices, you can inquire about the future Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV (presumed but unconfirmed range of about 80 km) scheduled for release in the fall, or the Hyundai Santa FE plug-in hybrid.

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