FORD F-150 WINS BEST BUY TRUCK AWARD- 3rd CONSECUTIVE YEAR

f-150-lariatIts been recognized as one of the top 10 iconic vehicles of the decade by the AutoFOCUS awards. The dynamic Ford F-150 has yet another award to once again add to its tally of accolades.

The 2017 Ford F-150 is taking home the Kelley Blue Book KBB.com “Best Buy” of the Year for trucks award, marking the third year in a row F-150 has won the honor.

The 2017 Ford F-150 – the toughest, smartest, most capable F-150 ever – introduces an updated powertrain lineup with the debut of its all-new 3.5-liter EcoBoost® and Ford-built 10-speed automatic. The powertrain provides 50 lb.-ft. more peak torque, and features improvements across all three EPA fuel economy ratings – city, highway and combined – of 1 mpg over the 2016 model.img_9605

Also new for the 2017 F-150 is the return of the STX Appearance Package bundling numerous exterior and interior features that aren’t normally available to give F-150 customers a great value truck. For comfort and convenience, BLIS®with cross-traffic alert now includes trailer coverage, while SYNC® Connect with FordPass® allows drivers to lock, unlock and locate their vehicle remotely. Customers can also schedule starts and check the fuel level remotely via the FordPass smartphone platform.

Besides it incredible towing attributes, impressive content and technology and drive quality, the Ford F-150 is simply fun to drive. That adds up to a consistently recognized vehicle that continues to get better each year.


 

The Corolla dares to be sexy?

I’m willing to be that the designers of the The Toyota Corolla iM was thinking about all the ways they could make this car uh, shall I say a little sexy? Yes, its true, this 5 door hatchback is pretty impressive to look at, which is something Toyota has been working on and tweaking over the past few years, and with the iM, they got it right in a big way. Add to that the dynamic eye-popping colors and roominess and you’ve got a winner.

Getting right down to business, the test drive was lots of fun because of the drive quality, handling and ease of operation, not to mention the technology. It was all the more impressive due to its 27 miles per gallon in the city and 35 miles per gallon on the highway in the mileage category.

The performance is driven by what’s under the hood. Underneath that hood is an 1.8 liter 4-cylinder dual overhead cam 16 valve engine producing 137 horsepower. There’s a 6 speed manual transmission, front wheel drive with Electric Power assisted steering. For better performance that engine is fuel injected with ventilated front desk brakes. If you’re looking for power in the acceleration, forget it. You’ll get a smooth, gradual increase in speed but not a rocket-burst of power and torque.

Surprisingly enough the car has head and leg room for someone as tall as me so most regular sized human beings should have no problem getting in and out of the car if that’s a concern. The hatchback has more than enough space to haul all the thing any normal family would need from a hatchback.

Inside there’s a 7 inch touchscreen and 6 speakers producing amazing sound with bluetooth connectivity. Other than the few little issues I pointed out earlier, its really  hard to find fault with the Toyota Corolla IM, but its key competitors are doing their best to up the ante, especially in the areas of materials and engine productivity include the Ford Focus, the Honda civic, The Mazda 3 and the Kia Forte 5.

 

BEST PHOTO CONTEST HAS A WINNER

img_1031He’s got the coolest, smoothest most uber-swagalicious photo of them all.  The proof is below right? He’s DeAundre Slater and the powerful image of himself, half sitting behind t
he wheel of the amazing Mazda Miata convertible, but appearing to be stepping out. Congratulations to Mr. Slater for his selection of BEST PHOTO during the 15th annual AutoFOCUS awards held last month at the Miami International Auto Show.

The annual BEST PHOTO contest is held each year during the AutoFOCUS Awards which encourages attendees to take their coolest photos at the auto display of the active sponsors of the event, which included Ford and Mazda for 2016. The “BEST PHOTO” contest is so muimg_1032ch a part of the annual AutoFOCUS Awards and really gets the attendees connected to the sponsors as well as the Auto Show itself” said Tony C. Lesesne, host of the AutoFOCUS TEST DRIVE web show that selects various winners.

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DeAundre Slater with Tony Lesesne after the 15th Annual AutFOCUS Awards

“People love taking selfies and group shots around cars, and have lots of fun submitting their photos. Its not uncommon for them to actually begin to explore options for purchasing the cars once they begin to look at the details.”  Lesesne said next year’s contest will include video and will also allow social media interaction to select winners. A special thanks goes out to Ford Motor Company and Mazda of North America for being a part of this fun activity.

Click the Youtube link below to check out the AutoFOCUS coverage of the 2016 AutoFOCUS Awards and give your feedback – we can’t wait to hear from you.

5 Reasons the Lexus RC 350 may be a game changer

 

By Tony C. Lesesne

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  1. Great DNA! The all new Lexus RC 350 is built from the IS C floor plan, the GS A-pillar, and the IS rear architecture. That kind of DNA is well worth having, and the driver is rewarded as a result.20160702_074211
  2. POWER AND STYLE: The car is aimed at aimed power junkies who also embrace style & design. Powered by a V-6 producing 306 horsepower and 277 lb-ft of torque, the RC 350 accelerates with confidence yet cruises like a large sedan with firmer seats and sporty handling. For more power and style, the F Sport includes adaptive dampers and four-wheel steering, high-friction brake pads, 19-inch wheels.2016-lexus-es-05
  3. COST IN THE SEGMENT: Finally, an affordable fixed-roof Lexus coupe at a base price of $43,715. The F Sport trim version starts at $48,800 (with rear-drive version, adaptive dampers and a sexy power sunroof option is about $1k less than the BMW 435i M sport package.  A fully loaded RC costs about $60,000, which includes a 467-hp V-8.20160702_074113-2
  4. THE FEEL:  It like you’re wearing a well-tailored suite, such as the sweet wrap around seats and sultry interior design.
  5. PERFORMANCE TECH:  You can feel the performance technology at work in the drive and handling.                                                                                                                                                                                                                      To check out the AutoFOCUS test drive, just click the URL below and enjoy the ride.                                                                                                                         https://youtu.be/QeWXjkw53HQ                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             Be sure to join us for the 2016 AutoFOCUS Awards on Sunday September 11th at the Miami beach Convention Center. Tickets can be purchased on Eventbrite at  https://www.eventbrite.com/e/autofocus-awards-noche-de-amigos-2016-tickets-26609103545?aff=eac2

The Nissan Leaf impressive and fun

By Tony C. Lesesne

 

nissanleaf2016-03513The 2016 Nissan Leaf SL is a all electric, fun to drive little 4 seater with a charger port that  is located right in the front of the car between the headlights.

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Here I am about to head back home to charge it up.

It has a hundred and seven mile EPA-rated range again a hundred percent electric no gas. So we’re talking about is about 107 miles per gallon? Estimate so you save about $6,000. Now the cost of the automobile is about 339 thousand $300. It’s got a 6.6 kilowatt on-board charger in a Quick Change Port, regenerative braking system, four-wheel power-assisted vented disc brakes and 17 inch alloy wheels. From a performance standard the surprise is the pick up that you get and the smooth ride that it provides. From a design standpoint it’s a sleek and attractive little vehicle and inside you get lots of space.

downloadIts ‘s an attractive and Nifty little asset. Regarding Safety and Security, the Nissan Advanced air bag system is installed with front seat mounted side impact supplemental airbags as well as roof-mounted curtain side-impact supplemental airbags. That’s pretty impressive. The government gave it a 5-star crash rating. The overall vehicle score is four stars. The frontal driver impact rating is five stars. Quite impressive there as well, as it is given a 5-star side-front seat rating. Some of the other features include the four-wheel anti-lock braking system, tire monitoring system and various other cool technologies that enhance Safety and Security. 20160712_181908Yes there’s an HD radio system with Sirius XM and a USB connect cord for iPod and other compatible devices as well as a Bluetooth hands-free phone system. There are 60/40 split-folding rear seats and a rear view monitor that keeps you advised of what’s behind you as you back out. When you’re driving you can adjust everything with a 6 way adjustable driver seat. Exterior features include the LED low-beam headlights, fog lights below, dual power remote control heating, outside mirrors and features an aerodynamic underbody cover, and rear diffuser.

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For Drive, Reverse, Parking and Neutral, just rotate this knob

I know that I won’t be doing any road trips with this vehicle. So this vehicle is really good for a roundabout City Vehicle. It’s also good for individuals who don’t plan to do any long-range driving but just want to get around town with Comfort, convenience and fuel saving economy. 2016-nissan-leaf_100526982_mOh and by the way I forgot to mention that the Bose 7 speaker audio system was phenomenal. I can assure you that I had it on blast most of the time I spent inside rthe car. It was like jhaving a real concert right there inside the cockpit.

The gadgets and controls are pretty easy to figure out and the ride quality really was much more enjoyable that I expected. Also the space in the hatchback was more ample than expected as well, so getting my stuff back there; from groceries to equiptmenrt was easy enough.

We expect this car to make the nomination list for the upcoming AutoFOCUS Awards this fall. With that said, be sure to look out for the next AutoFOCUS test drive review, and don’t miss the 2016 AutoFOCUS Awards on Sunday September 11th 2016 at the Miami Beach Convention Center. Just contact us for more information.  www.lesesnemediagroup.com

The Audi TT is a tough competitor in its class

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by Tony C. Lesesne

 

I’ve always loved the look and style of this car, but I was curious about the performance it would deliver on the open road. When it came time for the test-drive for this blog, my curiosity was satisfied.20160513_162749

The 2016 Audi TT is a redesigned version which is about 100 pounds lighter. The 2016 Audi TT is a small all-wheel-drive sports car available as a coupe configured with a 2+2 seating arrangement or a two-seat convertible.

The addition of Audi’s virtual cockpit, which utilizes a 12.3-inch TFT screen to display navigation maps and instruments bring a new level of satisfaction to the driver. Three different modes are available, one that emphasizes the navigation map, one that squeezes the map and enlarges the instruments and a Sport-oriented layout with a large central analog tachometer and central speedometer. 20160513_192155High-quality materials and a clean, elegant look that’s simple and tasteful make it easy to appreciate. 20160513_162941The back seats don’t provide much space for passengers unless you squeeze them in. In the TT coupe, there’s a 10.8-cubic foot cargo area that’s expandable to 25.1 cubic feet with the split-folding rear seats down which is a very good thing.

A turbocharged 2.0-liter I-4 is the only engine available and is rated at 220 hp and 258 lb-ft of torque in the base model and 292 hp and 280 lb-ft in the TTS. Both the TT and TTS will come exclusively with a six-speed twin-clutch automatic transmission.20160513_163328-2 The all-wheel drive system in all TT models is able to move 100 percent of torque to the front or rear wheels as determined by a microcomputer. Fuel economy in the TT is class competitive at 23/30 mpg city/highway for the TT coupe and convertible, and 23/27 mpg for the TTS coupe.

Standard safety features on the 2016 TTS include dual-front, front-side, and side curtain airbags. Blind spot warning is available as part of the technology package.

The base TT comes generously equipped with automatic full LED headlights, LED taillights, automatic climate control, leather/Alcantara upholstery, heated front sport seats, 50/50 split-folding rear seatbacks, Audi’s MMI infotainment system with handwriting recognition technology, the slick virtual cockpit, Bluetooth connectivity, keyless entry and start, rear parking sensors, and Audi Drive Select. 20160513_153140Navigation, a rearview camera, blind spot warning, and heated power-folding side mirrors are available as part of the Technology package. Nappa leather upholstery is available as part of the Audi Design Selection package or the S Sport Seat package. A Bang & Olufsen audio system and 19-inch alloy wheels wrapped in summer performance tires are available as standalone options.

Driving the TT was lots of fun. It has excellent pick-up for those moments you need to get onto the expressway from the on ramp. It also handles with confidence when taking on curves and moving around tight spots. The low center of gravity provides a clean and exciting view of the road in front, tempting the driver to push the limits of the car, so let this be a warning to those of you with a lead foot. The TT is well-positioned in a very tight and competitive segment which includes the Mercedes-Benz SLK class, the BMW Z4, the Porsche Boxter, Alfa Romeo 4C, and the Nissan 370Z.

Be sure to watch the AutoFOCUS Test drive web tv shows each week at http://www.lesesnemediagroup.com