Richmond Auto Mall - Tony Whitney Reviews

2017 FORD TRANSIT VAN

Every now and again, I like to get my hands on a commercial vehicle. After all, these rigs are the lifelines of our delivery systems for all kinds of goods and produce and without them, it would be a very different world. In recent times, there’s…

2017 FORD EXPLORER SPORT SUV

The widely popular Ford Explorer has been with us since 1990 and is now in its fifth generation, so few vehicles in this class are quite as well developed. In the US, it’s been the best-selling SUV for an amazing 25 years. In its early years, you…

2017 TOYOTA COROLLA iM

When Toyota decided to quietly drop its Scion line of vehicles there was some disappointment among buyers who thought the offshoot had some very worthwhile models in its range. Thankfully, two Scions have been subtly transferred to the Toyota range…

2017 JAGUAR XE SUPERCHARGED SPORTS SEDAN

It was rumoured for a long time that Jaguar was working on a sports sedan sized like such competitors as the Lexus IS, Audi A4, Mercedes C-Class, BMW 3-Series and one or two others. This is a hot-selling segment in the auto industry and it’s good to…

2017 JEEP WRANGLER RUBICON RECON 4X4

You can buy an off-road capable 4X4 for a surprisingly reasonable price if you look around, but when it comes to getting involved in serious trail-bashing activity involving very steep grades, loose rock, ford-crossing and deep sand, the choice…

2017 TOYOTA 86 SPORTS COUPE

When Toyota decided to retire its Scion brand there was a lot of concern over what would happen to some of the stars of the lineup, cars like the FR-S sports coupe. Thankfully, one of the survivors was the FR-S, which has appeared in the Toyota range…

2017 MERCEDES-BENZ-C63-S-AMG-COUPE

Every now and again I get my hands on a car that hits the mark so impressively it makes me want to mortgage my home and get one of my own. Such a model was the Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG Coupe S that I’ve been driving for a while. The C63 in this guise…

2017 TOYOTA TUNDRA TRD PRO FULL SIZE PICKUP TRUCK

One of the “hazards” about being an automotive journalist is that you never quite what you’ll be driving next and because of often-tight test vehicle scheduling, you’re not really able to pick and choose. All too often when the weather is wintery,…

2017 MAZDA6

Last time I reviewed a Mazda6 a few years back, I said that it was often overlooked by intermediate sedan buyers and that it was one of those rare automobiles that could enjoy twice the usual four-year model run and still look good. Even so, the Zoom…

2017 JAGUAR F-PACE LUXURY CROSSOVER/SUV

Years ago, even before its fairly short period of Ford ownership, Jaguar, management made it quite clear that the famed British carmaker would never build an SUV. It was “not Jaguar’s thing” and the very idea of offering such a vehicle, rather than…

2017 LEXUS NX 300h COMPACT LUXURY HYBRID

Lexus gives its customers an amazingly wide range of products to choose from in every configuration. Compact luxury SUVs are often a gap in auto builders’ model ranges, but not at Lexus where the NX model is offered with both conventional (2.0-litre…

2017 HONDA RIDGELINE PICKUP TRUCK

Honda introduced its Ridgeline sport utility truck in 2005 as a 2006 model and it was something of a sensation at the time, being the only pickup class vehicle Honda had ever offered in North America. The first generation truck has had a very lengthy…

2017 NISSAN PATHFINDER

Nissan’s Pathfinder has undergone a major workover for 2017 and the occasion prompts a look at the history of this very long-lived SUV. It’s been in the marketplace for more than 30 years and was one of the pioneers of the most popular vehicle…

2016 VOLKSWAGEN TOUAREG FULL SIZE SUV

The Touareg is Volkswagen’s largest SUV and is a distant relative of the Porsche Cayenne as the vehicles were jointly developed by the two allied German automakers. Although it carries a VW badge and not the famed shield of Porsche, it’s nonetheless…

2017 HYUNDAI ELANTRA

For 2017, Hyundai has introduced an all-new Elantra, a product that long been very popular in Canada with tens of thousands on the road going back several generations. Part of its popularity is linked to its “ideal” size. It’s not too large and…

2017 HONDA CR-V

An all-new Honda CR-V is an important event for the Canadian market. This compact crossover has always been very popular in Canada and has been a leading product in its class right from the first model back in 1995. The fifth generation 2017 CR-V…

2017 MERCEDES-BENZ SLC 43 AMG

Among the pure sports car models offered by Mercedes-Benz, the SLC 43 is “entry level,” but don’t get any ideas about this being some kind of poor relation in the family. The SLC, especially in the AMG guise my tester featured, is fast, nimble and…

2017 AUDI Q7 LUXURY FULL SIZE SUV

The Audi Q7 is the pinnacle of the German automaker’s SUV/crossover lineup and as such, it’s lavishly equipped, superbly finished, notably powerful and features the company’s near-legendary Quattro all-wheel drive. This is a large, roomy SUV with…

2017 HYUNDAI SANTA FE XL AWD ULTIMATE

The Hyundai Santa Fe is a mid-sized SUV and the largest in this class produced by the Korean automaker. It originally appeared in 2000 and the current model is the third generation of the product and was launched in 2014. I recently drove a 2017…

2016 RAM 1500 LARAMIE LONGHORN CREW CAB PICKUP TRUCK

Pickup trucks are immensely popular in North America, both for work and for recreational use, and prices can vary widely as one might expect. There are basic ‘work special’ versions of most trucks that have no frills at all and come with rubber floor…

2017 ACURA NSX

There’s a brand-new Acura dealership at the Richmond Auto Mall, but the store is no stranger to Richmond, having operated on #3 Road for 30 years. In fact, Richmond Acura was the Honda luxury division’s very first dealership in Canada. The business…

2016 TOYOTA AVALON LIMITED SEDAN

Toyota has an amazing range of vehicles of all kinds and many of them are top sellers in their segments, but one product that’s often overlooked by people shopping the large semi-luxury sedan market is the Avalon, which offers just about everything…

2016 HONDA FIT EX-L NAVI SUBCOMPACT HATCHBACK

The Honda Fit is a subcompact hatchback and on a worldwide basis, one of Honda’s best-selling vehicles. It’s been around now since 2001, but it was 2006 before the car made its North American debut. It’s built in eight countries and so far, Honda has…

2016 JAGUAR XJ L LUXURY SEDAN

A flagship Jaguar is always going to be something very special and the 2016 XJ L is just that – an opulent, comfortable, speedy and beautifully built automobile from one of the world’s most prestigious luxury car builders. It’s the biggest car…

2016 FORD FLEX CROSSOVER

The Ford Flex has always been something of a standout in the fullsize crossover field. For starters, it doesn’t look like anything else out there. It’s low and sleek and its stance on the road makes it appear a foot lower than most other large…

2017 GENESIS G90 LUXURY FLAGSHIP SEDAN

Hyundai has been well established in Canada for many years now and after making a start with fairly basic economy cars like the Pony and Stellar, it gradually started building more ambitious vehicles and established a name as a manufacturer of…

2016 VOLKSWAGEN JETTA SEDAN

Volkswagen’s Jetta sedan has been around for many years after starting life back in 1979 as more or less a “Golf with a trunk.” Since then it’s acquired a character of its own and many people would never know that it uses Golf running gear and much…

2016 VOLKSWAGEN GOLF R

The long-lived Volkswagen Golf dates back to 1974 and is possibly the most imitated small car in automotive history with countless automakers coming up with versions of their own. It’s hard to believe today that it was VW that virtually created the…

2016 MERCEDES-BENZ S 65 AMG COUPE

For many years, Mercedes-Benz has been almost the only luxury car manufacturer to include in its range a two-door coupe based on a large sedan. The reasons many makers shy away from this layout is the belief that most buyers want four doors when they…

2016 TOYOTA YARIS SEDAN

Toyota’s Yaris sedan is this automaker’s entry in the subcompact market, a segment that’s very strong with younger first-time buyers and also among older folk, possibly retired, who don’t need a large car anymore. The Yaris may be small, but it’s…

2016 JAGUAR F-TYPE R AWD CONVERTIBLE AND COUPE

It’s claimed the fastest Jaguar road car ever built and it only takes a few minutes behind the wheel to realize why. It’s the F-Type R, available as a coupe or convertible and boasting a supercharged V-8 that produces acceleration so impressive it…

2016 FORD ESCAPE ECOBOOST TITANIUM

Ford’s Escape falls squarely into the compact crossover class and thus competes with a very large number of rival products. In Canada, this class has always been very popular, although the subcompact crossover segment (a size notch lower) is growing…

2015-2016 DODGE CHALLENGER LINEUP

Who was it who said that muscle cars have faded from memory? Not Dodge for sure, because right now, the automaker offers a range of Challengers that by far exceeds anything the company achieved in the 1950s and 1960s. Buyers have a great choice when…

2016 HYUNDAI TUCSON COMPACT CROSSOVER

The compact crossover market is a hot one for Canadians and this class is by far the best selling among SUV-type vehicles. Every major automaker has a compact crossover in its range and some have several. Even luxury brands have gotten into the act…

2015 LEXUS LS 600h L HYBRID LUXURY SEDAN

It’s often believed that buyers who spend large amounts of cash on upscale luxury sedans don’t really care about fuel costs, but this has been proven something of a myth. It’s probably fair to say that nobody enjoys visiting service stations several…

ALL-NEW FORD F-150 FOR 2015

I’m often asked what the best-selling vehicle is in North America right now and there’s often a look of surprise when I confirm that it’s the Ford F-Series pickup. In fact, it’s held that status for close to 40 years and more than likely, there are…

AUDI RS 7 HIGH-PERFORMANCE SPORTBACK

It’s one of the world’s finest four-door sedans by any standards and it might be less appreciated than it should be in a performance market dominated by Mercedes-Benz AMG and BMW M models. It’s the remarkable Audi RS 7 and it’s unique in its class by…

2015 NISSAN SENTRA SV MT

Each year, Nissan’s popular Sentra continues to be improved and for 2015, the company is adding a fair number of interior comfort and convenience refinements to most models. Nissan’s aim with the Sentra is “class above” style and an enhanced driving…

2015 FORD MUSTANG GT CONVERTIBLE

To the folks who were around at the time, it may not seem like 50 years since the first Ford Mustang rolled off the production line, but that’s the truth of it. The iconic American sports car has been around that long, and it’s celebrated with subtle…

TOYOTA PRIUS c ECONOMY HYBRID SUBCOMPACT

Whenever people get together and start talking about hybrid vehicles - a popular topic these days - the conversation often runs around the phrase “they’re great, but too expensive.” Car buyers often have the notion that hybrid vehicles are too costly…

2016 HYUNDAI TUCSON HYDROGEN FUEL CELL ELECTRIC VEHICLE

Automakers have been experimenting with hydrogen fuel cell vehicles for many years now and I’ve driven a number of them but usually these drives have been brief and always with a member of the engineering team beside me in the passenger seat. All…

2015 HONDA PILOT SE

For many SUV/crossover buyers, compacts are a little too small and full-size rigs a tad on the large (and thirsty) size. Thankfully, the auto industry has the answer and several makers produce mid-size models that for most family needs, fit the bill…

2015 VOLKSWAGEN TOUAREG DIESEL

The Touareg is Volkswagen’s large SUV and has been in the range now for several years, since 2002 to be exact. It’s reasonably common knowledge that the Touareg was developed along with the Porsche Cayenne and uses the same platform and many common…

2015 NISSAN VERSA NOTE SUBCOMPACT HATCHBACK

The Versa Note is Nissan’s entry in the hotly-contested and now well populated subcompact hatchback market. Products like this are very appealing to a very wide range of buyers from young people perhaps buying their first new car to retirees who are…

2015 MERCEDES-BENZ GLA 250 COMPACT CROSSOVER

Right now, the compact luxury and semi-luxury crossover/SUV market is booming - an interesting development because not that long ago you could count every model on the market on one hand. Just a few that come to mind are the Range Rover Evoque, Audi…

2016 FORD GT SPORTS SUPERCAR

Ford created something of a stir around the auto shows earlier this year when it announced plans to produce a new sports supercar. Generally known for its range of ever-improving lower and mid-priced models, Ford nonetheless has something of a…

2015 TOYOTA TACOMA COMPACT PICKUP TRUCK

Full-size pickups seem to snare most of the headlines nowadays so it’s easy to forget that for many users - both work and recreational - a compact truck can be the best choice. Not everyone needs the bulk and payload capability of a big truck and…

2016 MERCEDES-BENZ AMG GT HIGH PERFORMANCE SPORTS COUPE

Back in 2003, Mercedes-Benz sprang something of a surprise by entering the supercaR market with its Mercedes SLR McLaren - a luxury product aimed straight at the Ferrari/Lamborghini segment. It was a great-looking car and with its Formula 1 design…

2015 TOYOTA YARIS SUBCOMPACT HATCHBACK

Subcompact cars have become increasingly popular in recent years and most major automakers have at least one model in their ranges. And while many buyers are young people, possibly enjoying their first car, the class is also popular with retired…