Matt Myftiu

Matt Myftiu

Matt Myftiu has been a journalist for two decades with a focus on technology, NASCAR and autos.

The 2019 Chevy Suburban isn’t just big.

It’s not just huge.

It’s absolutely massive.
It’s too big for some people, probably most people.


But the truck-based full-size SUV is great for large families (and sports teams) and can seat up to 9 people comfortably, a claim not many vehicles can make.

It’s also very adjustable, with the second and third rows folding down for maximum storage space. You can either pack in a bunch of people or a bunch of stuff, or sometimes both. You’ll find 39.3 cubic feet of space behind the third row (which is actually comfortable for adults to sit in), and 121.7 cubic feet with the 2nd and 3rd rows folded down.

The downside of this size is maneuverability (or lack thereof) in tighter spaces, as well as the difficulty of finding a proper parking space at times. Once you’re parked though, you won’t have any trouble finding this big boy in the lot. I often just parked farther away, which is generally a wise move anyway.


It terms of the interior, you’ll find in the Suburban a well-appointed design that is sharp looking but just shy of luxury level materials that you’ll find in its GM cousin Cadillac Escalade model

All passengers have plenty of leg and head room, seats are comfy, there’s lots of charging locations for your devices, and tech setup/controls are intuitive.

The Beetle is a resilient little bug … and yes, I'm talking about the 2-door hatchback car legend first introduced in the U.S. in 1949.

Still around almost seven decades after its introduction, the Beetle remains a unique vehicle that's so well-known it's even got its own road game that involves punching your siblings.

I recently tested a 2018 VW Beetle, and I'm back with a full report on how the latest version of this iconic ride fits into today's automotive world.

LOOKS

While there are some adjustments to the look, including a lower roof profile, in the end the 2018 Beetle is what a Beetle has always been -- a small, two-door vehicle that is shaped, well, like a Beetle.

There are technically a couple competitors in the segment (MINI Cooper and Fiat 500), but no one is ever going to confuse those little rides for the Beetle. No other car looks like this, and it’s a very stylish design from the headlights and taillights, to the interior wood design and the sunroof. The exterior design overall was very snazzy, right down to the red trim on the rims to match the paint job.

While visually attractive, the design of the Beetle does lend to poor visibility out of the rear.

Perhaps the biggest flaw in the Beetle is that the back seat of the 2018 Beetle is basically nonexistent. It’s there, but no adult wants to sit there. Consider it a storage area unless kids are going in the rear.


The Beetle comes in four trim levels: S, SE, Coast and Dune: Cloth seats come standard on S models, SE comes with leatherette seating. Coast features two-tone beige and black cloth seats, and the Dune features sport cloth seats with leatherette accents.

Sometimes you’ve got to start over, especially if what’s been hanging around for a while is getting outdated.


Such is the case with the Volkswagen Jetta, which gets a much-needed redesign for the 2019 model year that steps up its presence in the compact car segment. I recently spent some time in a 2019 Jetta, and I’m back with a full report on the improvements and how the updated model measures up.

LOOKS

The Jetta remains a compact car, so don’t expect massive amounts of room. But things are improved in terms of driver and passenger comfort from previous models, and both front and rear passengers will feel comfortable in terms of legroom and headroom. That’s because the 2019 Jetta is longer, wider and taller than the previous version.

The leatherette seating materials in the sporty R Line version of the Jetta I tested were quite comfortable (leather is offered on top trim level), but some of the interior featured hard plastics generally associated with vehicles in this price range. Attractive two-tone seating is also offered.

 

Denny Hamlin, who won the pole for today’s race at MIS with a lap of 210.590 mph, was happy to see some positive results after a bit of a rough stretch. He won all three segments of qualifying on Friday, and was seventh in final practice.

“These guys are really stepping up and we’re starting to make a little hay now. We love to see results when you work so hard,” Hamlin said. “The toughest part is when you work really hard and you don’t get the results and really we had unfortunate circumstances happen to us last weekend with that stop, but overall just been so happy with our performance.”

As far as the race, Hamlin knows he has to approach things a bit more measured than in qualifying.

“We have to get it driving just like it is right now – consistent and easy to drive at this point. You have to make sure you have that same sustainability in race trim for 200 laps around here.”

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