May 20, 2008

Jalopnik Circles The Wagens

Jalopnik overwrites the first installment of their trademark 3-part review of the VW Jetta SportWagen. The verdict so far: they look better from the inside [as someone who's only ever seen the potato-shaped Wunderwagen in photos, I would certainly hope so]. And they compare somehow to Frank Lloyd Wright houses [which, if you don't know that Wright's designs were often shot through with fatal, impractical and technical flaws that the imperious architect shoved down the throats of his cowed, fawning clients, is mostly supposed to be a compliment.]

Still, the TDI Wagen's spot on our shortlist is VW's to lose. It's now supposed to arrive in August. ... [jalopnik]


Meanwhile, the PR folks at Subaru apparently have the carblogging world by the short hairs. The flacks are "leaking" silly, teasy promo videos of their new mid-sized 7-seat wagon, the Exiga, one blink-and-you-miss-it shot a day, which the bloggers are dutifully reporting. So far, the frame captures I've seen look an awful lot like the version Subaru unveiled in Tokyo in 2007.

The Exiga goes on sale some time this year in Japan, where mid-sized 7-seaters are everywhere. Whether the third row will travel to the US or not, I guess we'll have to wait until the marketers throw their lapblogs that bone.

Subaru Exiga Spied [sic] Testing [jalopnik]


I don't understand why VW has used "Toyota Corolla" as their styling inspiration for their latest generation Jetta and Passat. Toyota is also notorious for having a mushy, disconnected ride and these latest offerings also lean more in that direction than their German heritage would normally suggest. I've owned four VWs (and three Audis) in my life, but these leave me cold.

By the way, loved the comment on FLW. So true!

Why is it that Japanese carmakers decide not to export their sensible mid-sized seven seaters to the US?

I know we've got the new Honda Stream coming next year but I've heard that they will not be importing the seven seater. I guess they don't want to mess with their Odyssey and Pilot business, but really. If you give Americans a decent seven seater wagon with a small range of engines and fuel options 4-cyl, 6-cyl, hybrid and diesel, they will buy them. Considering the prices for fuel nowadays I don't see why everyone needs a maxivan or SUV.

Why aren't there more options?

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