THE DRIVE with Alan Taylor | Episode #359
It seems like there’s big news coming out every week around this time of year due to the plethora of international car shows that are taking place, like the Chicago Auto Show (CAS). First up to bat to fill us in on CAS happenings is Autotrader Executive Editor, Brian Moody. The 2020 Toyota RAV4 TRD Off-Road, 2020 Kia Telluride, and 2019 Volkswagen Jetta GLI gave Brian a lot to be excited about. While a few SUVs and sedans did stand out, the Chicago Auto Show had a clear focus on trucks. Automotive journalist, BJ Killeen, shares how manufacturers are pushing their trucks further and further, which vehicles caught her eye, and which rides fell flat. Next up, Executive Publisher for Kelley Blue Book, Autotrader.com, and Dealer.com, Karl Brauer, talks about his Rubella scare after the Detroit Auto Show, and the reintroduction of Sublime (a bright green) green to Mopar cars at CAS. Speaking of Mopar cars, Alan and Karl have both had their Dodge Demons for a year and it’s time for their extended review of this beast of a machine. Another monster machine that Alan owns is his 1-of-1 2016 Dodge Viper ACR, but he’s trying to not own it anymore; check out this future classic on ClassicCars.com. Closing the show, Owner of Collins Bros Jeep, Dennis Collins, gushes about the 2019 Dodge SRT Hellcat Redeye; this car loses to the Demon ever so slightly on horsepower, but makes up for it everywhere else. Also, we find out how Black Mountain Jeep’s licensee program works, how the trade wars are affecting business, why Dennis isn’t banking on the restomod market, and what kind of plans Dennis has for the rebirth of the Jeep Gladiator. Tune in for another exciting week of auto show coverage and monster car reviews.
- [00:00:00] 2020 Toyota RAV4 TRD Off-Road
- [00:05:24] Kia Telluride, Subaru Legacy, Shelby GT500
- [00:12:31] 2019 Volkswagen Jetta GLI at CAS
- [00:19:51] 30 Year Anniversaries and Awesome Trucks
- [00:28:20] BJ’s Top Picks from Chicago Auto Show
- [00:35:52] New Chevrolet Blazer a Disappointment?
- [00:42:12] Sublime Green is Back and Rubella Scare
- [00:48:03] Tesla Loses Tax Credit and Autonomy
- [00:54:43] Dodge Demon One Year Report Card
- [01:02:04] It’s Time to Let the 2016 Viper ACR Go
- [01:09:00] Dodge Redeye and Restomod Market
- [01:18:04] Black Mountain Jeep, Tariffs, Gladiator
Discover more about segments and guests below…
[00:00:00] 2020 Toyota RAV4 TRD Off-Road
Since Alan didn’t get to go to the Chicago Auto Show, we have to fill in the blanks with experts like Executive Editor of Autotrader.com, Brian Moody. Unsurprisingly, Brian reports that Toyota announced a host of Toyota Racing Development (TRD) models; what was surprising was their new TRD Pro Series of Sequoia and Four Runner. Perhaps the most interesting revelation was Toyota’s new 2020 RAV4 TRD Off-Road edition; the RAV4 now has more bite to go with its newly masculine look. Are you going to get a Toyota RAV4 TRD Off-Road?
[00:05:24] Kia Telluride, Subaru Legacy, Shelby GT500
There was a lot to see at the Chicago Auto Show. Here to help us cut through the clutter is Autotrader’s Brian Moody. The updated 2020 Subaru Legacy caught Brian’s eye with it’s beautiful interior, huge touchscreen, and Subaru-standard features like AWD and unmatched reliability. Another car making waves at CAS was the 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500. Rumored to have over 700 horsepower, this Mustang is catching up with the huge horsepower of Dodge Hellcat series muscle cars. Lastly, the 2020 Kia Telluride is set to dominate a crowded market by bringing features at an extra-affordable price range of $30,000. Find out more about Brian’s top picks from the Chicago Auto Show.
[00:12:31] 2019 Volkswagen Jetta GLI at CAS
We can’t rave enough about the 2020 Kia Telluride. Kia has done such an amazing job designing this SUV, and they’ve priced it competitively to boot! Automotive journalist, BJ Killeen, describes the remarkable quality and reliability of Kia vehicles and how that may influence her to make her next purchase a Kia as well. One car that is making her rethink this course is the 2019 Volkswagen Jetta GLI, which sports the Golf GLI’s 4-cylinder 228-HP turbocharged 2L engine, with 258 lb-ft of torque; a 80-HP and 60 lb-ft torque increase from the standard Jetta! Also featured is a 6-speed manual transmission, limited slip differential, and Golf R front brakes. Don’t miss out on this fun ride!
[00:19:51] 30 Year Anniversaries and Awesome Trucks
Time really does fly when you’re having fun, and two cars celebrated their 30 year anniversaries this year at the Chicago Auto Show that embody ‘fun’: the Mazda MX-5 Miata and Acura NSX. Mazda celebrated this anniversary with a Racing Orange version of the bright yellow Miata Club Racer concept from 1989. Meanwhile, the truck segment was having a giant one-upping contest, as the Chevrolet Silverado HD touted a 35,500 lb towing capacity at 910 lb-ft of torque, pulling ahead of the RAM Chassis Cab’s 35,500 lb capacity, but not quite matching its 1000 lb-ft of torque. A truck’s towing capacity isn’t everything, and GMC’s multi-pro tailgate and RAM’s barn door tailgate proved that. Check out some of these tough and prestigious machines on THE DRIVE with Alan Taylor’s Facebook page.
[00:28:20] BJ’s Top Picks from Chicago Auto Show
While news coming out of the Chicago Auto Show didn’t seem particularly explosive, there were plenty of reveals to be excited about. Automotive journalist, BJ Killeen, fills us in on one of her top pics, the 2019 Nissan Pathfinder Rock Creek edition. What makes this rugged SUV trim package special is its bang-for-buck ratio. The Rock Creek package adds on a black mesh grill, black roof rails, black fascia, special badging for only $995. Another stunner was the Ford F150 Harley-Davidson. Ford has been focused on creating special editions based on Harley-Davidson motorcycles, and this year they handed the reins of this project over to an aftermarket company called Tuscany. This move really paid off as it looks amazing, but it will only have a limited run of 1,000 units, which may be fine as most people will be hard pressed to drop $84,000-$97,000 on this vehicle. Listen in to find out why Alan urges us all to do our homework when shopping for vehicles to save loads of cash in the end.
[00:35:52] New Chevrolet Blazer a Disappointment?
Chevrolet Blazers are one of the most popular utility vehicles for those that like to do some off-roading on the weekends. So when Chevy announced they were poised to bring the Blazer back, people were naturally very excited. Unfortunately, Chevrolet took this opportunity to pump out another run-of-the-mill sporty crossover. Automotive journalist, BJ Killeen, wonders if this clears the way for the Ford Bronco to be a huge success. While the Blazer may not have been keeping BJ’s attention, a Chevy Silverado made completely from Legos certainly did! Are you let down by the reveal of the Chevrolet Blazer?
[00:42:12] Sublime Green is Back and Rubella Scare
What’s your favorite muscle car color? If you said Sublime green, you’d be right! Executive Publisher of Kelley Blue Book, Autotrader.com, Dealer.com, Karl Brauer, shares his excitement over Mopar’s reveal of the revived color variation at the Chicago Auto Show. Something that didn’t excite Karl was a four-day stint with brutal cold symptoms that might have been the Rubella outbreak from the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS), which scared the hell out of him! Luckily, it was nothing more than an average virus. Tune in for more.
[00:48:03] Tesla Loses Tax Credit and Autonomy
Tesla is finding itself in a weird spot as they decrease the price of their Model 3 in response to the loss of $7,500 tax incentives. Executive Publisher of Kelley Blue Book, Autotrader.com, Dealer.com, Karl Brauer, looks on the brightside as Tesla starts to turn its first profitable quarters in 15 years of existence. Elon Musk and Tesla are poised to make a big dent in the luxury segment as demand for their all-electric vehicles grow in Asia and Europe. Also, Alan is starting to come around on autonomous cars, as he has been having to take care of his elderly parents. He wishes he had a self driving vehicle to take them where they needed to go right about now! In his heart, though, he will always be a car guy yearning for the thrill of the drive. What do you think about the rise of autonomous cars?
[00:54:43] Dodge Demon One Year Report Card
It has been a year since Alan and Executive Publisher of Kelley Blue Book, Autotrader.com, Dealer.com, Karl Brauer, first drove their Dodge Demons, and it’s time for the one year review. These cars will do things at racing facilities that would have been inconceivable in a production vehicle just a few short years ago. With low upkeep costs, manageable fuel economy, and a Camry-like drivability, Dodge did an amazing job when sculpting this masterpiece. Listen in for more.
[01:02:04] It’s Time to Let the 2016 Viper ACR Go
Have you ever wanted to own a limited edition 1-of-1 2016 Dodge Viper ACR? Well, you may be in luck, as Alan has decided to part ways with his in favor of another vehicle, even though it pains him. Executive Publisher of Kelley Blue Book, Autotrader.com, Dealer.com, Karl Brauer, discusses the difficulty of letting cars like his 2005 Ford GT and 1970 Plymouth GTX go, so he can sympathize with Alan’s situation. Check out Alan’s 2016 Dodge Viper ACR at Classiccars.com.
[01:09:00] Dodge Redeye and Restomod Market
Alan has long said that if he ever sold his Dodge Demon, he’d buy a Redeye. Collins Bros Jeep Owner, Dennis Collins, just sold a Redeye at Barrett-Jackson for $110,000, a move he says he made to test the market. The Redeye may not have all of the raw stats of the Demon, but it’s 797-HP engine is nothing to scoff at, not to mention its superior handling and drivability. This is a 203 mph car, you’d have to spend $300,000-$400,000 anywhere else to get that kind of speed out of the factory! Changing gears, Dennis comments on the growing trend of restomod projects selling for higher and higher prices while matching numbers cars are on the decline. Don’t bank on this trend continuing, Dennis warns, restomod trim trends are moving very fast and buying numbers-matching cars may be more worthwhile in the long run. Listen in for more great tips.
[01:18:04] Black Mountain Jeep, Tariffs, Gladiator
We all know Dennis Collins, Owner of Black Mountain Jeep and Collins Bros Jeep, as a huge Jeep enthusiast, so what does he think of the Jeep Gladiator? Dennis describes why the longer from of the Jeep Gladiator won’t necessarily hinder its ability to rock climb like its JK and JL Wrangler counterparts. Changing gears, we get a peek into the business of Black Mountain Jeep and what it does for its licensees, the effects of tariffs and trade war on Dennis’ day-to-day operations. Closing the show, Dennis asks if anybody listening has leads on a factory red 1989-1991 Jeep Grand Wagoneer. Let us know at ClassicsDeadorAlive.com!
Explore More with Helpful Links:
- Contributor: Brian Moody | Executive Editor, Autotrader.com
- Contributor: BJ Killeen | Freelance Automotive Journalist
- Contributor: Karl Brauer | Executive Publisher, Kelley Blue Book/ Autotrader.com/ Dealer.com
- Contributor: Dennis Collins | Owner, Collins Bros Jeep/ Black Mountain Jeep
- Website: Chicago Auto Show
- Vehicle Mention: 2020 Toyota RAV4 TRD Off-Road
- Vehicle Mention: 2020 Kia Telluride
- Vehicle Mention: 2019 Volkswagen Jetta GLI
- Vehicle Mention: 1-of-1 2016 Dodge Viper ACR
- Vehicle Mention: 2020 Dodge SRT Hellcat Redeye
- Vehicle Mention: 2020 Jeep Gladiator
- Vehicle Mention: 2020 Chevrolet Blazer
- Vehicle Mention: Mazda MX-5 Miata 30 Year Anniversary
- Vehicle Mention: Acura NSX 30 Year Anniversary
- Vehicle Mention: 2020 Chevrolet Silverado HD
- Vehicle Mention: 2020 Ford Mustang Shelby GT500
- Program Host: Alan Taylor
- Producer: Dave Milligan
- Production Assistant: Joanne Bolden
- Audio Engineer: Dave Milligan
- Copy Editor: Cody Castleberry
Our Sponsors & Supported Charities:
- Austin Hatcher Foundation
- Foundation of Human Understanding
- Go RVing
- Patriot Outreach
- The Little Rock Foundation
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