We drive the Hyundai Sonata, get up close and personal with the 2015 Ford Edge, check in on June car sales, and try to digest the latest massive GM recall—this is the Week in Reverse, here at The Car Connection.
This week starts with a first drive in the 2015 Hyundai Sonata. Built in Alabama, the Sonata has become one of Hyundai’s core cars—so this time it’s been restyled with a look you might call more conservative, and less daring than before. Still driven by a lineup of four-cylinder engines, the Sonata is much quieter and more composed this time around—it’s lost all the rough edges in noise and ride quality. It’s also gained a new Eco edition with a small turbo engine and a dual-clutch transmission, for a 32-mile-per-gallon EPA combined rating.
Also new for 2015 is the Ford Edge. Shown off at a press event in Michigan, the new Edge wears a smart new look that was sketched out in concept form for auto-show crowds late last year. The look upgrades the Edge's SUV silhouette into premium territory—and inside, the Edge gets some of its buttons and knobs back, ones it had ditched in favor of the controversial MyFord Touch system. The new Edge offers a standard turbo four and automatic, a turbo V-6, or a normally aspirated V-6, all with an automatic transmission and an option for all-wheel drive. The new Edge goes on sale next year—stay tuned for a first drive.
This week, we filled you in on new-car sales in the month of June. The heated pace kept up, and most automakers posted big gains--Chrysler, Toyota, and Nissan sales rose, and so did GM’s, despite a record number of recalls. Ford and VW sales fell. Despite the onset of summer, analysts are expecting the sales streak to continue—with 2014 possibly ending somewhere near 17 million vehicles sold.
GM announced more recalls this week…of course. Some 8.2 million vehicles were added to the ignition-switch recalls announced earlier this year by the company; they include the Chevy Impala and Cruze; the Cadillac CTS; and Pontiac and Oldsmobile cars long since out of production.
And finally this week, we took a first look at two new operating systems coming to your car’s dashboard: Apple CarPlay and Google Android Auto. Google’s interface will let drivers plug an Android-powered smartphone into the dash, then pair the device with Android Auto via Bluetooth. Once that's done, the car's center stack essentially becomes a second screen for the phone. Apple’s CarPlay, meanwhile, got closer to production as Hyundai demonstrated it in their new Sonata. Hyundai is one of a slew of companies—including Ford, GM, Honda, and Toyota—that will connect Apple users to their cars through CarPlay.