Happy Earth Day! Now more than ever, taking care of our environment is a priority on a lot of our minds. By switching over to an electric vehicle, you are helping reduce your carbon footprint on this earth. Getting into an EV doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg. Here are the top 5 entry-level EVs you can drive!
Car, van or SUV — choose your weapon.
2021 Update: We’re back with the 24 Hour Sale and Midnight Madness (at select stores) on June 16th, 2021. Check out the new offers here:
Check out all the offers here: The OpenRoad 24 Hour Sale Event
What’s on offer:
- A grand prize of 24 months of payments is available to one lucky winner during this event! Please see the terms and conditions here.
- Free gas card with each purchase worth at LEAST $100
- A bonus trade-in offer of $1,000 above market value
- Additional offers and bonuses available on a per dealership basis
- Additional events are available at select dealerships as well – check out their event schedule for more information!
* Doors are open overnight by appointment only, so please let us know when you’re coming 🙂
The Honda HR-V is available with a five-speed stick shift.
In the auto world, a movement has brewing in recent years known simply as “save the manuals.” In an increasingly CVT, dual-clutch and plain old automatic transmission dominated North American landscape, some manufacturers are still choosing to produce vehicles equipped with standard gearboxes, albeit only on certain models and in limited quantities (hey, we’ll take what we can get.) Surprisingly, it’s not just sports cars that are benefiting from this effort, but even small crossovers like these ones we’ve highlighted below.
For people who don’t need a full-blown crossover yet want more room than a car and all-wheel drive, it doesn’t get much better than the Clubman ALL4. Under the hood, a zippy turbocharged 2.0-litre motor serves up 189 horsepower and 207 lb-ft of torque, and towards the back there is a load of cargo space behind the second row and of course the signature dual split rear doors.
A six-speed manual is regular equipment, implementing a little electronic wizardry not immediately obvious. A special internal sensor has been outfitted enabling “active engine speed adaptation,” which in plain English means downshifts are automatically rev-matched so transitions to a lower gear are quick and smooth.
Mazda’s answer to the subcompact SUV craze is the award-winning CX-3, a vehicle built for urban adventurers. The base trim starting at $19,995 packs in a lot of features for the price including push button start, air conditioning, seven-inch touchscreen display, backup camera and most importantly, a slick shifting six-speed standard gearbox.
Any gearhead will tell you Honda has a reputation for building excellent manual transmissions, which rings true whether we’re talking about the one found in the classic S2000 or the new Civic Type-R.
The technology is proven to trickle down throughout the lineup, because while the HR-V has a CVT option, a six-speed standard tranny belonging to the same lineage is otherwise the norm front-wheel drive grades. The lever clicks into each gear with such precision and tactile feeling — and the fact that it’s mated to a peppy 141-horsepower i-VTEC engine — you almost forget you’re in a subcompact crossover.
Even though the New York International Auto Show (NYIAS) takes place at the tail end of the show circuit, it is nevertheless a must-see event for any consumer slash car enthusiast. Established in 1900, the more than a century-old spectacle now takes over four floors in the beautiful downtown Jacob K. Javits Convention Centre with nearly 1,000 cars and trucks on display this year. Read on for three particularly interesting reveals from NYIAS 2018.
Genesis Essentia Concept
People got a taste of what could be a future Genesis high-performance battery electric vehicle when the upscale brand revealed the Essentia Concept, a zero-emissions gran-touring coupe. This EV is guaranteed to turn heads with its low-slung carbon fibre body, flashy butterfly doors and Genesis Quad Lights, which are razor thin, flush mounted laser optical head and tail lamps. A high-density battery pack and multiple electric motors help the Essentia get from 0 to 100 km/h in a flat 3.0 seconds.
2019 Toyota RAV4
The best-selling vehicle in Toyota’s lineup receives a complete overhaul for the upcoming model year. Wearing the latest signature face revolving around a bold hexagonal grille, the once diminutive SUV is no longer gaining 30 millimetres in wheelbase length, 10 millimetres in width and an extra half-inch in ground clearance.
The RAV4 will be sold in two 2.5-litre four-cylinder flavours, both utilizing new Dynamic Force Engine tuning. One runs on pure gasoline, mated to an eight-speed Direct-Shift automatic transmission, and the other is a hybrid driven by a continuously variable transmission. The Japanese automaker is also debuting an available Dynamic Torque Vectoring all-wheel drive system on the platform significantly improving traction in different environments.
Classic MINI Electric
The BMW Group had one of the most fun world premieres at NYIAS: a fully electric powerplant stuffed into a classic MINI shell. The unique amalgamation is a way of celebrating a commitment to preserving its heritage, and to set the scene for the MINI 3 Door EV due out next year, coinciding with the nameplate’s 60th anniversary. The one-off restoration features dazzling red paint, a contrast white top and yellow MINI Electric badging similar to those on the plug-in Countryman.
If you go far back enough through MINI’s timeline, you will discover a past steeped in racing. The BMW Group is trying to rekindle that competitive flame with the John Cooper Works GP Concept design study, a model bred for the track.
“The MINI John Cooper Works GP Concept is all about the unfettered feeling of driving and levels of performance found in motor sport competition,” said Peter Schwarzenbauer, member of the BMW AG board of management also responsible for Rolls-Royce and BMW Motorrad. “This is driving fun in its purest form.”
Called the “maximum MINI” because of its exaggerated proportions, the model is a larger than life version of the standard variant. For example, the GP possesses a much wider stance thanks to flared fenders, aggressive front and rear lower bumper aprons, deep side skirts and a massive hatch spoiler. Much of the body aero is constructed out of carbon fibre to keep the weight low and the fun factor high.
Designers have created a new take on the signature black and red paint scheme of JCW — the body is dipped in Black Jack Anthracite, which depending on the light changes shades slightly, and the accenting trim is finished in a more vibrant Curbside Red Metallic. The number 0059 stamped into the quarter panel is a reference to the 1959, the year the brand was born.
Peer inside the racy vehicle and you’ll notice the cabin is just as serious as the exterior. A roll cage provides reinforcement, surrounding only a pair of bucket seats with five-point safety belts. The instrument cluster is all digital, and is paired with a Head-Up Display feeding the driver important information directly into his or her line of sight so concentration remains on the road whipping by.
While sparse, the interior has still been given a dash of style using smooth leather on the headrests bolsters, a third Highspeed Orange highlight colour on the belt straps and steering wheel stitching, and an interesting 3-D knitting technique used to create the textured central section of the seating.
The 2018 Canadian International Auto Show is in full swing right now at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre, and this year it’s all about the concepts. Here are a trio of big ones from three different manufacturers.
MINI Electric Concept
Not even a year after MINI released its first production plug-in hybrid, the Countryman PHEV, the brand has introduced a fully electric concept. Looking like a futuristic Cooper, much of the grille has been smoothed over to reflect to reflect the removal of the internal combustion component. The body sports special aerodynamic pieces, unique badging and “Striking Yellow” paint accents for differentiation. A production version is scheduled for 2019.
Infiniti Project Black S Concept
A collaborative project between Infiniti and the Renault Sport Formula One Team — a partnership that has existed since 2016 — Project Black S is a racy reimagination of the Q60 Coupe. Finished in a menacing matte grey, the designers have blacked out all the chrome found on the standard Q60, such as on the front bumper and door pillar surrounds, and utilized healthy amounts of carbon fibre in fabricating the exterior parts. Under the sheet metal, an Energy Recovery System recoups unspent electricity to boost power and torque output.
Toyota i-TRIL Concept
This environmentally friendly compact EV is the product of Toyota Motors Europe and affiliate ED² design studio based in Nice, France. Intended for those living in a so-called SMESTO (small to medium-sized town), the one-plus-two seater uses Active Lean Technology, which allows the front wheels to lean to one side during cornering similar to a motorcycle, while the rear pair stays perpendicular to the road. This allows a super tight turning radius with no physical discomfort to the passengers. The i-TRIL can travel more than 200 kilometres on a single charge and is operable in manual or autonomous modes.
And it will be called the MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4.
The new not-so-mini JCW Countryman is now the brand’s biggest model, and packs an equally large punch.
We’ve picked out five models that all have features to make canine transport more pleasant.