Subaru hosted journalists at Japan's Suzuka Circuit near Nagoya recently to demonstrate suspension components that will be marketed as part of the automaker's plan to expand its Subaru Tecnica International division. Eventually, STI will offer complete vehicles, such as BRZ concept shown this week in New York.
The BMW i8 plug-in hybrid is not cheap, starting at $136,650, but the cabin sees the automaker taking chances like never before with sleek seat designs, bold blue seatbelts and ambient lighting that seems fitting for a space shuttle. Test vehicle includes $2,000 Giga package plus optional blue seatbelts.
Lincoln is trying to boost its sagging brand image by launching Black Label versions of new vehicles as they arrive. For $6,000, customers can pick from four main design themes named Indulgence, Oasis, Modern Heritage and Center Stage, all emphasizing premium materials and build quality. The Lincoln Black Label MKZ, priced at $58,165, was judged as part of this year's Ward's 10 Best Interiors competition.
The Volkswagen Touareg has been a laggard in Ward's burgeoning Middle Luxury CUV segment, selling only 6,961 units in 2014. Yes, VW is a mainstream brand, but the Touareg has skewed near-luxury based on price and premium content. The refreshed Touareg sticks with that formula and is much improved. Our AWD V-6 diesel test vehicle stickers for $60,080.
Subaru's redesigned AWD turbocharged WRX sedan, always popular among rally-car enthusiasts, arrives for interior evaluation with stylish carbon-fiber trim, gray and red stitching, a flat-bottom steering wheel and an updated central display that includes a boost gauge. Test vehicle sticker price, including $795 destination charges, is $29,639.