2019 Lemon Aid New Car Reviews - Early Preview

Following is an overview of all-new vehicles that were unveiled at various auto shows during the winter of 2018 that are either on the verge of going on sale or scheduled to be in showrooms by the end of the year. 

A sign of our crossover-mad times, fully nine of the 21 vehicles covered in this preview classify as crossovers. In addition to the Kia Forte which will be offered in sedan and hatchback formats, there are three conventional sedans, an old-school station wagon, three hatchbacks and three three all-new pickup trucks (four if you count GM's Silverado and Sierra separately) that will be on sale before 2019 arrives.   

Acura RDX Hyundai Santa Fe Mercedes Benz A-Class Toyota Avalon
Cadillac XT4 Infiniti QX50 Nissan Altima Toyota Corolla Hatchback
Chevrolet Silverado Kia Forte RAM 1500 Toyota RAV4
Ford Ranger Lexus ES Subaru Ascent Volkswagen Arteon
GMC Sierra Lexus UX Subaru Forester Volvo V60
Hyundai Nexo      

 

2019 Subaru Forester

 

NEW

What’s new
All-new fifth-generation Forester goes on sale in the fall of 2019. 
Comments
For the new Forester, Subaru opts once again for a gentle evolution of style rather than a noticeable break with the model it replaces. Underpinning the new vehicle is the Subaru Global Architecture, which supports the Impreza/Crosstrek and Ascent, and will eventually be Subaru's sole platform.
Cabin styling is very traditional, with big, crisply marked gauges and simple, straightforward controls. Seating is comfortable front and rear a 27 mm (one inch) longer wheelbase of the new model results in greater rear seat legroom.  
The 2.5L flat four returns for 2019, now with direct injection and a stop/start system. Power increases from 170 to 182 for 2019 and Subaru touts gains in performance and fuel economy for the updated powerplant. The 2L turbocharged engine has been discontinued for 2019 but Subaru's new 2.4L turbo, which debuted on the recent Ascent, may find its way under the hood of the Forester eventually. All-wheel drive is standard and power reaches the wheels via a revised CVT which now offers a seven-speed manual mode. SI Drive, with Intelligent and Sport settings, is standard. An optional drive mode permits the driver to select Snow/Dirt and Deep Snow/Mud settings.
Subaru's optional EyeSight collision avoidance technology is joined by a lead vehicle alert that signals the Forester driver if that driver has not noticed that the car in front of it has started moving. 
Pricing
No pricing details are available at this time.
Reliability
New vehicle, not rated. Suburu insists its traditional engine issues, leaking head gaskets and excess oil consumption, are in the past. If you plan to keep the car past the five year/100,000 kilometre powertrain warranty, an extended powertrain warranty might be good insurance. 

Specifications


Body Style:  4SW
Occupants: 2/3
Engines:
2.5L-4 (182 HP)

Transmissions: CVT 
Drive Layout: All-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy:  N.A.
Highway Fuel Economy:  N.A.

Active Safety Features: Available forward collision, lane departure, sway, blind spot and rear cross traffic warnings, active cruise control, autonomous emergency braking, lane keep assist and rear obect detection with auto stop  


Additional Airbags: No info available

Warranty: 3/60,000, 5/100,000
Current Generation Debut:  2019
Country of Origin:  Japan

IIHS Ratings:

Sml. Front: NR

Mod. Front: NR

Side: NR

Roof: NR

Rear: NR

NHTSA Rating:


 

 

2019 Toyota Avalon

 

NEW

What’s new
Toyota takes one more kick at the Avalon can despite extreme indifference from the buying public.
Comments
Despite no interest from the public--444 sold in Canada in 2017--Toyota has elected to release the fifth-generation Avalon in Canada for the 2019 model year. With its massive grille, jagged forms flanking the grille and heavily creased side profile, the new Avalon lacks the sublime elegance of its predecessor.
The new Avalon is yet another new model built on the Toyota New Generation Architecture that now underpins virtually all of Toyota's newest models. Toyota has elected to open up some marketing and literally actual space between the Camry and the Avalon for the new model. Compared with the Camry, the Avalon is built on a 50 mm (two inch) longer wheelbase, which makes for great legroom for rear seat riders.
Toyota has pulled out all the stops when designing the cabin of the new Avalon, which is modern and luxurious. The driver faces large traditional gauges separated by a substantial info screen. The centre of the dashboard is dominated by a large rearward angled screen that flows into the centre console. The visual element of the screen is flanked on each side by four pushbuttons; with a control knob at each lower extremity of the screen. The climate is controlled by a series of buttons that look complicated at first but prove simple to use. From the gothic window sew patterns on the seats and fascinating shapes, the cabin of the new Avalon is distinctive and luxurious and a big step up from what came before. The sporty themed XSE trim features alloy trim and vinyl and faux suede seating with the Limited reflecting a traditional luxury vibe with leather seating and genuine wood accents.
The Avalon is powered by a re-engineered by a 3.5L V6 which puts out 301 horsepower but only 267 lb-ft. of torque. Power flows to the front wheels exclusively through an eight-speed automatic transmission.
The Toyota Safety System, with pre-collision including pedestrian detection, daytime cyclist detection, dynamic radar cruise control and lane departure alert with steering assist, are standard. Also standard is blind spot and rear cross traffic monitors, with the Limited adding a rear self-braking feature to the rear cross traffic feature.
Pricing
New to the Avalon but long a factor of Camry marketing, the new Avalon will be offered in two streams, the sporty XSE and the more traditional Limited trim. The vinyl and faux suede upholstered XSE tirm starts at $42,790. The $47,790 MSRP Limited, with luxury items such as a power adustable heated steering wheel, heated rear seats, ambient lighting, memory seats and leather seating, is good value and your only choice if you want to avoid vinyl upholstery.  
Reliability
New vehicle, not rated. Previous Avalons have been reliable. 

Specifications


Body Style:  4SD
Occupants: 2/3
Engines:
3.5L-V6 (301 HP)

Transmissions: 8A 
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy:  N.A.
Highway Fuel Economy:  N.A.

Active Safety Features: Pre-collision with pedestrian detection, dynamic radar cruise control and lane departure alert with steering assist as well as blind spot and rear cross traffic warnings.


Additional Airbags: Knee airbags for both front occupants

Warranty: 3/60,000, 5/100,000
Current Generation Debut:  2019
Country of Origin:  United States

IIHS Ratings:

Sml. Front: NR

Mod. Front: NR

Side: NR

Roof: NR

Rear: NR

NHTSA Rating:


 

 

2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback

 

NEW

What’s new
An all-new Corolla Hatchback goes on sale in the fall of 2018. 
Comments
Unlike the previous Corolla, which was a sleek and modern design, the new car, with a dramatic and fussy front end and generally lumpy styling, looks frumpy and older than the car it replaces. Toyota debuted the hatchback version (which will replace the Corolla iM) at the New York show but a sedan, which will be the volume seller in the U.S. at least, will surely follow.
Contrasting with the lacklustre exterior, the cabin, with clear dials, a large infotainment screen, interesting shapes, high contrast two-tone colour combinations and plush materials, is very stylish. Despite a longer wheelbase, the roominess of the last Corolla seems to have evaporated and rear seat legroom lags behind other cars in its class. The hatchback model boasts a spacious and versatile cargo hold. Apple CarPlay finds its way into the Corolla for 2019.
Like its C-HR, Prius and Camry showroom mates, the new Corolla is based on the Toyota New Generation Architecture (TNGA). A new 2L four, called Dynamic Force, is found under the hood. Power reaches the front wheels via either a six-speed manual transmission or a CVT.
The second-generation of Toyota's Safety Sense System, called TSS 2.0, will be standard. It features a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection and daytime cyclist detection, dynamic radar cruise control and forward collision warning with autonomous emergency braking, lane departure warning with steering assist as well as a blind spot warning system.

Pricing
No pricing details are available at this time.
Reliability
New vehicle, not rated. The new engine is unproven. The previous Corollas was reliable.   

Specifications


Body Style:  4HB, 4SD
Occupants: 2/3
Engines:
2L-4 (169 HP)

Transmissions: 6M, 6A 
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy:  N.A.
Highway Fuel Economy:  N.A.

Active Safety Features: Pre-collision system with radar cruise control, autonomous emergency braking, pedestrian detection and daytime cyclist detection. Lane departure warning with steering assist and blind spot warning. 

Additional Airbags: Driver's knee airbag.  

Warranty: 3/60,000, 5/100,000
Current Generation Debut:  2019
Country of Origin:  Unknown

IIHS Ratings:

Sml. Front: NR

Mod. Front: NR

Side: NR

Roof: NR

Rear: NR

NHTSA Rating:


 

 

2019 Toyota RAV4

 

NEW

What’s new
An all-new RAV4 goes on sale in the fall of 2018. 

Comments
Like the new Corolla, the upcoming RAV4 is built on Toyota's TNGA architecture. Dimensions are essentially the same as before but the wheelbase is 30 mm (1.8 inch) longer than before. Toyota notes that the new vehicle platform is significantly more rigid than previously
Toyota's latest "Power Force" engine series, a 2.5L four in the case of the RAV4, is the mainstream engine for all variants. Power finds its way to the wheels via a conventional eight-speed automatic transmission. The hybrid variant combines the efforts of the 2.5L four and the electric motor and sends power to the front wheels via a CVT. On all-wheel drive hybrids, the rear wheels are driven electrically. All-wheel drive models feature Multi-Terrain settings; with programming for snow, mud, sand and rocks.
Unlike its sleek, car-like predecessor, the new RAV4 has a decidedly trucky look that bears a close resemblance to Toyota's serious off-roader, the 4Runner.
With a longer wheelbase, the cabin is roomier than before. The driver faces big, clear gauges with a distinctly truck-like ambience and the climate and audio controls looks like they would be at home in one of Toyota's pickup trucks. The top centre of the dash is dominated by a large info screen, which is flanked on both sides by four push buttons, with each a control knob at each lower corner of the screen. The cabin materials look and feel better than those in the last RAV4.
The second-generation of the Toyota Safety Sensing system, referred to as TSS 2.0, will be standard on all trim levels.

Pricing
No pricing details are available at this time.
Reliability
New vehicle, not rated. Unproven platform, engines and automatic transmission.   

Specifications


Body Style:  4SW
Occupants: 2/3
Engines:
2.5L-4 (203 HP estimated), 2.5L-4 H (208 HP combined, estimated)

Transmissions: 8A (2.5L), CVT (Hybrid) 
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive, all-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy:  N.A.
Highway Fuel Economy:  N.A.

Active Safety Features: Pre-collision system with radar cruise control, autonomous emergency braking, pedestrian detection and daytime cyclist detection. Lane departure warning with steering assist and blind spot warning.

 

Additional Airbags: Unknown 

Warranty: 3/60,000, 5/100,000
Current Generation Debut:  2019
Country of Origin:  Canada

IIHS Ratings:

Sml. Front: NR

Mod. Front: NR

Side: NR

Roof: NR

Rear: NR

NHTSA Rating:


 

 

2019 Volvo V60

 

NEW

What’s new
An all-new V60 debuted at the New York show in March 2018 and will go on sale this fall. 

Comments
Volvo's new V60 broke cover at the Press Days of the New York show this year. Like the XC90, S-V90 and XC60, the new V60 is built on Volvo's Scalable Product Architecture and is uncommonly elegant. It appears that the recently introduced XC40 was both a rip in Volvo's style continuum and fortunately, an anomaly. The V60 will be built in Belgium but the upcoming S60 sedan will be sourced from Volvo's new U.S. factory.
Volvo has become a master at repurposing various components and XC90, XC60 and S-V90 owners will be very familiar with the gauges, touch screen, audio, climate controls as well as the front seats of their new V60s. The cabin of the V60 is both a vision of restrained elegance and assembled from very attractive components. Seating is comfortable and passenger space and cargo volume are both competitive within the compact luxury segment.
Volvo's Drive-E 2L fours, in turbocharged T5, turbo and supercharged T6, and eventually a plug-in hybrid offshoot of the T6 marketed as the T8. The T5 will be offered with front-wheel drive; with all-wheel drive optional on the T5 and standard on the T6 and T8 variants. A conventional eight-speed automatic is the sole transmission available.
The V60 will equipped with a wide array of active safety features including City Safety system with Autobrake, autonomous emergency braking, with a detection system that can identify pedestrians, cyclists and large animals. Volvo's available Pilot Assist system adds cornering performance, road run-off mitigation and oncoming lane awareness.

Pricing
Volvo Canada has announced an MSRP of $43,900 for the base front-wheel drive T5 model.
Reliability
New vehicle, not rated. Below average reliability is expected, especially as the car ages. The four year 80,000 kilometre powertrain warranty is typical for the European brands but the sheer complexity of the T6 and T8 engines make the coverage look inadequate.    

Specifications


Body Style:  4SW
Occupants: 2/3
Engines:
2L-4 T (T5: 250 HP) , 2L-4 T-S (T6: 316 HP), 2L-4 T-S-H (T8: 390 HP estimated)

Transmissions: 8A 
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive, all-wheel drive*

City Fuel Economy:  N.A.
Highway Fuel Economy:  N.A.

Active Safety Features: Adaptive cruise control, collision warning with full autostop, rear cross traffic detection and lane departure warnings and lane keep assist as well as City Safety system with pedestrian, cyclist and small animal recognition. 


Additional Airbags: No info available Warranty: 4/80,000
Current Generation Debut:  2019
Country of Origin:  Belgium

IIHS Ratings:

Sml. Front: NR

Mod. Front: NR

Side: NR

Roof: NR

Rear: NR

NHTSA Rating:


 

 

2019 Volkswagen Arteon

 

NEW

What’s new
The Arteon, an all-new Volkswagen range-topping passenger car that replaces the Passat CC in the VW lineup, goes on sale this fall.
Comments
Based on Volkswagen's ubiquitous MQB platform, the Arteon is a substantial vehicle that is roughly the same size as the Passat. However, unlike the very pedestrian-looking Passat, the Arteon is, with taut forms and inspired detailing, a very elegant machine. Though it looks like a sedan, the Arteon is actually a hatchback.
The Arteon's cabin will look and feel very familiar to most Volkswagen owners. The dashboard touch screen, climate and audio controls are all repurposed from other VW models and drivers of upscale trims will face the multi-configurable transistor film technology (TFT) gauge pod that has been working its way into many Volkswagen Group products over the last few years. The rest of the cabin reflects a very traditional manifestation of elegance. Seating is comfortable front and rear and legroom is generous for all occupants. The hatchback tail is both commodious and versatile.
The Arteon will be powered by a high-output version of VW's 2L turbo four that produces 268 horsepower. Power reaches the wheels exclusively through a conventional hydraulic eight-speed automatic transmission. Front-wheel drive is standard; with 4Motion all-wheel drive optional.
Active safety equipment like forward collision warning, autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control with stop and go and lane departure with lane assist, will be available.

Pricing
No pricing details are available at this time.
Reliability
New vehicle, not rated. The Arteon should demonstrate average reliability for the first three or four years, with reliability expected to decline after that.   

Specifications


Body Style:  4HB
Occupants: 2/3
Engines:
2L-4 (268 HP estimated)

Transmissions: 8A 
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive, all-wheel drive*

City Fuel Economy:  N.A.
Highway Fuel Economy:  N.A.

Active Safety Features: Active safety equipment like forward collision warning, autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control with stop and go and lane departure with lane assist, will be available.


Additional Airbags: Unknown 

Warranty: 4/80,000, 5/100,000
Current Generation Debut:  2019
Country of Origin:  Germany

IIHS Ratings:

Sml. Front: NR

Mod. Front: NR

Side: NR

Roof: NR

Rear: NR

NHTSA Rating:


 

 

2019 Mercedes-Benz A-Class

 

NEW

What’s new
Now in its fourth generation in other markets, the Mercedes-Benz A-Class will come to Canada for the 2019 model year.  

Comments
The A-Class is the first vehicle of the next generation of the budget-line from Mercedes that also includes the B, CLA and GLA models. While it it is in fourth generation, the new A-Class is the first version of the vehicle to be marketed in Canada. Canada will get the hatchback and the forthcoming sedan, whereas only the sedan will be offered to U.S. buyers. 
Compared with the current Mercedes B-Class, the A-Class is built on a 39 mm (1.5 inch) longer wheelbase and 29 mm (1.1 inches) longer overall, presaging a larger B-Class the next time it is renewed. The new A-Class hatchback is easily identifiable as a Mercedes and benefits from being designed during one of the "elegant" periods Mercedes occasionally stumbles into. Inside, the A-Class driver faces a long and shallow tablet-like screen which has a gauge package in front of the driver and infotainment sector over the dash centre stack. The climate controls are manipulated by a succession of small buttons just below the info screen. The rest of the dash is dominated by vintage-themed circular vents. With interesting shapes and some tasteful two-tone colour combinations, the cabin looks welcoming. The iOS-Android cellphone interface will be standard on the new A-Class. 
The A-Class will be powered by a 2L turbo four which produces 221 horsepower, 13 more than the current B-CLA-GLA trio. Power will reach the front wheels, or optionally, all wheels, via a seven-speed dual clutch automated manual transmission exclusively.  
Pricing
No pricing details are available at this time.
Reliability
New vehicle, not rated. Reliability should be average for the first three or four years, deteriorating after that. The short powertrain warranty of four years/80,000 kilometres, shows a lack of faith in the long term prospects of the main mechanical elements. The regular scheduled maintenance option package available from Mercedes is highly recommended.  

Specifications


Body Style:  4HB, 4SD

Occupants: 2/3


Engines:
2L-4T (221 HP)

Transmissions: 7A dual clutch automated manual 
Drive Layout: Front-wheel drive, all-wheel drive*

City Fuel Economy:  N.A.
Highway Fuel Economy:  N.A.

Active Safety Features: No information available. 


Additional Airbags: No information available 

Warranty: 4/80,000
Current Generation Debut:  2019
Country of Origin:  Unknown

IIHS Ratings:

Sml. Front: NR

Mod. Front: NR

Side: NR

Roof: NR

Rear: NR

NHTSA Rating:


 

 

2019 Infiniti QX50

 

NEW

What’s new
The second-generation QX went on sale in mid-2018. 
Comments
The QX50 changes focus this year; moving from a premium rear-wheel drive platform derived from a luxury sedan to mainstream front wheel drive underpinnings. Production has moved from Japan to Mexico.
The exterior design is very Infiniti, and the interior is both attractive and luxurious. Front seat passengers are very well catered for but the oddly shaped rear seat, lack of toe space under the front seats and unimpressive legroom may make rear seat riders contemplate staying at home. 
Nissan's big V6 has been jettisoned for a powerful 2L four which Infiniti refers to as the VC-Turbo, VC standing for variable compression. The engine adjusts the compression ratio between 8:1 (for performance) and 14:1 (for fuel economy). Former Swedish carmaker Saab toyed with this idea and won several awards for the technology, but abandoned the concept after General Motors (Saab's owner at the time) cut off funds for further development. This technology is innovative but unproven and complex; potential owners may be comforted by Infinit’s six-year/110,000 kilometer powertrain warranty.

Pricing
No pricing details are available at this time.
Reliability
New vehicle, not rated. The engine features unproven technology and if you plan to keep the car past the powertrain warranty, an extended powertrain warranty would be advisable.   

Specifications


Body Style:  4SW
Occupants: 2/3
Engines:
2L-4 T (268 HP)

Transmissions: CVT 
Drive Layout: All-wheel drive

City Fuel Economy:  N.A.
Highway Fuel Economy:  N.A.

Active Safety Features: Forward collision warning with pedestrifan detection. Radar cruise control with autonomous emergency braking. Lane departure, blind spot, rear cross traffic warnings, distance control assist and steer assist.  


Additional Airbags: None

Warranty: 4/80,000, 6/110,000
Current Generation Debut:  2019
Country of Origin:  Mexico

IIHS Ratings:

Sml. Front: NR

Mod. Front: NR

Side: NR

Roof: NR

Rear: NR

NHTSA Rating:


 

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