MotorTrend October 2020


MotorTrend is the world's automotive authority. Every issue of MotorTrend informs and entertains with features on the testing of both domestic and import cars, car care, motor sports coverage, sneak peeks at future vehicles, and auto-industry news.

United States
12 期号


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@markrechtin Welcome to MotorTrend’s new Buying Guide and Ultimate Car Rankings We will shop for and buy cars again. Leases are up. Or maybe a long-held car is costing more to maintain than a new car payment. Certainly, some folks are masking up and braving the threat of COVID to go car shopping because they have to. With the average age of every car on the road being nearly 12 years, folks need new wheels. But many Americans are simply hunkered and bunkered at home, satisfied with their existing car and mildly troubled only by the occasional dead battery. This issue—and more important, MotorTrend’s revamped Buying Guide website—is for both audiences: those who need car-buying information now, and those who have time to kill and are researching what to purchase when this whole mess…

trend 10.20

Jeep Wrangler Goes Both Ways TWO FIRSTS IN THE WORKS FOR JEEP: A FACTORY-INSTALLED V-8 AND A PLUG-IN HYBRID The Jeep Wrangler identity is built on doing one thing and doing it well. Facing the future, the off-road brand’s flagship has decided to go both ways: green and mean. The Wrangler, like many vehicles, is caught between two worlds. In the world of today, customers are buying more power with less concern about fuel economy, and parent company FCA’s unofficial motto is to Hellcat all the things. In the world of tomorrow, strict regulations worldwide are pushing automakers toward hybrid and electric vehicles. Jeep has decided not to decide and just built both. On the same day, Jeep announced both the Wrangler 4xe plug-in hybrid and the Rubicon 392 Concept with a 6.4-liter V-8.…


2020 Audi S4 Cars like the Audi S4 have a complicated set of responsibilities. They have to be fast, high-tech, comfortable, well-built, efficient, safe, and satisfying to drive—not to mention good-looking. Personally, I prefer the looks of the old car, but that doesn’t mean the new car isn’t handsome enough to satisfy those who can afford the $50,895 starting price. Audi’s adaptive dampers don’t give the S4 a Jekyll and Hyde duality—the changes in personality aren’t that extreme. But every time you switch from Sport to Comfort, the car relaxes and coddles you along the way. Ask for a heated massage from the red-trimmed sport bucket seats, and the calming effect is only heightened. Move the dynamic select switch in the other direction, and the S4 firms up, the eight-speed auto changing…

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Maserati’s MC20 supercar has come together in record time. Sources in Modena say work on vehicle architecture ideas took place in 2018, but actual development of the car did not start until January 2019. With start of production scheduled before the end of this year, that means a development time of barely 24 months. “It’s the quickest program I have ever worked on,” one insider says. Maserati designers and engineers relied heavily on virtual tools to create and test fully digital versions of the car before constructing any prototypes. The process worked so well, our source says, that when engineers tested the first physical prototype, they found it delivered exactly the same performance and handling characteristics they’d tuned into the digital versions. With all-wheel drive, high ground clearance, and long-travel…


Recycling Combustion: Might we soon buy gasoline made from CO2? I admit that writing about this month’s subject makes me feel a bit like Charlie Brown running toward Lucy and her football. This particular football, as a general concept, is just so alluring: Take a problem (excessive atmospheric CO2) and turn it directly into a solution that lets us keep driving the vehicles we love—via carbon-neutral gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel. This latest scheme solves many of the problems that have yanked the ball on my previous runs, giving me the courage to barrel toward it one more time. My three prior columns explaining ways of converting atmospheric CO2 into liquid fuels ran in July 2008, June 2012, and October 2018. The early ideas started by scrubbing CO2 from the air with…


Max Missoni Design Director, Polestar For most automotive designers, taking their CEO through a design review can be a fraught process. The auto industry is mostly run by accountants and engineers, number crunchers who rely on systems and processes to produce something that sells on emotion. Polestar design director Max Missoni has a slightly different challenge, however: His boss, Polestar CEO Thomas Ingenlath, is himself a designer. When Ingenlath left Volkswagen to become head of Volvo design in 2012, he brought with him to Sweden the Austrian-born Missoni, who’d worked for the German automaker since graduating from London’s Royal College of Art in 2002. Missoni was made vice president of exterior design for Volvo in 2014, and in 2018 he became Polestar’s design director after Ingenlath was made CEO of the premium electric…