Category Archives: Commentary

Commentary: A Change at The Top in Dearborn

Tweet Was Mark Fields fired…or did he retire? It was already an extraordinary news cycle in the early hours of Monday morning. It did not involve anything violent or tragic. It was a change of command in Dearborn at Ford … Continue reading

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Commentary: An “Outsider’s” View of The Car Scene in Minnesota

Tweet Photo by Randy Stern Car season began in Minnesota a month-and-a-half ago. I was reminded of it at the time by the flood of social media posts with anxious enthusiasts waiting to arrive at AutoMotorPlex in Chanhassen prior to … Continue reading

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Commentary: What is a Luxury Car These Days?

Remember when luxury meant you sat in a nicely appointed interior and moved with grace along the tarmac? You sat in plush velour or the best leather hides behind a swath of wood trim, elegantly-styled instrumentation, while being entertained by a fine audio system.

Nowadays, a luxury car is all about the toys. How much technology can you truly throw into a $30,000-plus automobile? The list of toys on today’s prestige automobiles is unbelievable. If we just start listing out the latest in active safety technology alone, we may forget about the satellite navigation system, intelligent driving aids, central knob controls, iPod/MP3 player porting and Bluetooth enabler inside the cabin. Don’t forget about the airbag count!

Now, what is the latest “toy?” Let’s see, gas/electric hybrid propulsion systems and cleaner diesel technology. It’s not enough to have performance, but to become responsible towards cleaner greenhouse gasses. To pay over $45,000 for the privilege of being guilty for buying a luxury car and showing your true political stripes concurrently.

This is why I am anticipating a mass abandonment by the glitterati on Oscar Night of the Toyota Prius. Remember last year when some of the key celebrities showed up on the red carpet coming out of the ubiquitous hatchback because it was the latest in automotive efficiency? Now, celebrities can show off their green bling in their Lexus RX400h and the GS450h luxomobiles. Continue reading

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Commentary: Is A “Good” Car Hard To Find?

08 Hyundai Sonata 1
Photo by Randy Stern

What is a good car? That is a question that takes on individual meaning since not everyone agrees what a good car really is. Lots of consumers rely on pundits, enthusiasts and the Consumer Union to help them determine what a good car really is.

“So, Randy, what is a good car?”
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Commentary: GM – Opel/Vauxhall + PSA = ???

Tweet Just before PALEXPO opened up to the world’s automotive media for the 87th Geneva International Motor Show, there was some major news to report. General Motors and the PSA Groupe – the parent firm of Peugeot and Citroen – … Continue reading

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Commentary: On the Air With…

Tweet Tom Stryker on the air in La Crosse – Photo by Randy Stern When I was a kid, I wanted to be a radio air personality. They called these men and women “disc jockeys” in my day. They had … Continue reading

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Commentary: What Turns Your Ignition?

Is this the key to your heart?

If you happen to own a Bentley Continental GT, Flying Spur or GTC, this is it! For those of us familiar with Volkswagen Group products, you may also see this key as a fancified version of the same key that operates your Jetta.

Why am I talking about a key? Well, Edmunds.com began the discussion by listing the ten coolest key fobs out in the market. The weighted Bentley switchblade key/remote locking fob obviously came in first. The list also includes some very prestigious names, such as Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Lexus, Infiniti, Jaguar, Land Rover and Cadillac. Each key and fob is distinctive in relation to their brand. A Range Rover owner can lose their key down a canyon and not get crushed to death if it fell within 30 feet of the point of departure. Some keys no longer employ a blade to enter into a lock or ignition cylinder. The Toyota Prius lets you shove the fob into a slot onto the have you push the button to start the car.
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Commentary: Mitsubishi Eclipse….As Another Crossover?

Tweet To the collective groan of, frankly literally anyone who has heard the news, Mitsubishi brought back the Eclipse…as a crossover. Mitsubishi did acknowledge that they are playing off the name of the extremely popular sports car which sold 1.8 million units … Continue reading

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Commentary: The (Re)State of V&R – 2017

Tweet On Wednesday, February 1, 29 folks showed up at Joey Nova’s in Tonka Bay, MN for some dinner. It was supposed to be Victory & Reseda’s official send-off of the 2017 Polar Run. However, it turned into many other … Continue reading

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Commentary: The Challenge of Mobility…and Then Some

Tweet A temporary mobility fix – All Photos by Randy Stern Let’s talk about mobility…again… I spent the week of the North American International Auto Show without working with a vehicle for publication. I figured I would utilize the entire … Continue reading

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