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Don Adair: Kia Forte thrives in the compact sedan segment

Who can argue with the crossover’s growing popularity? Crossovers are roomy, utilitarian and, with the easy availability of all-wheel-drive, enormously practical in snowy climes. In our rush to crossovers, though, let’s not forget the humble four-door sedan. Sedans are more affordable than crossovers, they’re more… Read more

Driver distraction persists

I’ve written columns devoted to driver distraction many times over the course of a decade or so. And writing about it can evidently only raise awareness, since it has remained rampant despite reporting by me and countless others. While drivers have always been distracted by… Read more

What self-driving cars won’t do

I pondered erratic driver behavior during a recent drive on a two-lane Washington highway. It could have been in any state or on any highway, since certain ill-advised, unexplained driver actions seem to surface everywhere. The crazy act I endured for over ten miles was… Read more

Don Adair: Kia Sorento — so many options, you might need a spreadsheet

Should your crossover shopping lead you to the 2017 Kia Sorento, I’d advise taking along a spreadsheet. The midsize Sorento is available in a dizzying array of configurations. The $20,000 spread that separates the base L trim ($26,295) and the topmost SX Limited ($46,595) merely… Read more

Don Adair: Volvo’s new S90 flagship pays a winter visit

Like an emissary from the Land of the Midnight Sun, Volvo’s new S90 sedan stopped by for our first real taste of winter. Of course, Volvo knows winter. The rigors of Swedish winters gave rise to its focus on stout construction and safety innovation. Volvo’s… Read more

More readers weigh in

I received much communication in response to my column making a plea for additional lanes on US Highway 195. One of those emails came from M.D. who drives 195 every day. But instead of the section south of Spangle, he drives the northerly four-lane stretch… Read more

Winter driving considerations

Hopefully, we’ve honed our winter driving skills during the December appearance of snow-covered roads. The basics of slowing according to conditions, effecting gentle input to steering, throttle and brakes, and leaving extra space around your vehicle should be habit by now. But there are other… Read more

Dubious road to autonomy

The availability of self-driving cars is imminent, but the route leading to them is still somewhat dubious. Much of the confusion stems from the current approach by automakers. Given corporate competition and secrecy, each manufacturer is on a different page as to the how, what,… Read more

Don Adair: Kia boosts fortunes of Cadenza near-luxury sedan

With the 2017 Cadenza sedan, Kia fast-tracks its North American learning curve. Kia made its name here selling well-equipped, value-priced small cars and crossovers and covering them with the industry’s best warranty. Now, it aims to repeat that success in larger, more luxurious segments. Quickly…. Read more

Fans of full-time headlights

My column, “Seeing the light,” elicited many responses, answering my query of where readers stand on full-time vehicle lighting. The column was meant to open debate on the merits or faults of daytime headlight use. But while nearly 20 drivers responded, the debate was non-existent,… Read more

Don Adair: Subaru Forester occupies unique space in its segment

Subaru has created an enviable space for itself in the compact crossover category. Subaru debuted the Forester crossover in the U.S. in 1998. It was based on the compact Impreza sedan, and ran Subaru’s full-time mechanical all-wheel-drive system. In snow and mud, it easily outpaced… Read more

195: A four-lane plea

I think we’ve all heard of frequent fatalities occurring on U S Highway 195, which is better known around here as the Pullman Highway. There are serious mishaps on just about every bit of that 95-mile stretch of mainly two-lane roadway on a regular basis…. Read more

Don Adair: GMC Acadia enters 2017 leaner, smarter and more efficient

You can call it downsizing or your can call it right-sizing; either way, GMC’s 7-passenger Acadia crossover enters 2017 leaner and smarter. For 2017, the midsize Acadia ($29,925 FWD/$35,375 AWD) has lost 7.2 inches in length, 3.5 inches in width and 6.6 inches in height…. Read more

Don Adair: Nissan Armada accommodates 8, tows up to 8,500 pounds.

If you found yourself salivating over the Infiniti QX80 we reviewed recently, but couldn’t get past its eye-watering ($88,850) price tag, take heart; Nissan may have your rig. The all-new, 2017 Nissan Armada is a mechanical twin to Infiniti’s QX80. The large, truck-based SUVs are… Read more

Motoring miscellany

I always appreciate reader input. The comments and questions you send provide a real-world glimpse of items on drivers’ minds. Here’s a sample of those communications. A common query came in from L.H., who wrote, “What is the passing rule for passing a school bus… Read more

Don Adair: Ford Fusion Energi a comfortable way to go green

We live in anxious times. We’re anxious about politics, errant space rocks and the doneness of the bird we’ll cook for Thanksgiving. Why add range anxiety to that mix? For many, the anticipation of driving an electric car beyond its battery-powered range is a show-stopper…. Read more

Seeing the light

After returning to standard time, there’s an earlier advent of evening darkness. As we adjust our biological clocks to our physical ones, the reality is that it now gets dark an hour earlier than it did during daylight savings time. Judging by their behavior at… Read more

Curbing road rage

Perpetually, news reports remind us that road rage is an impetus for collisions, fights and even death. Stress can escalate during the holiday season; don’t exacerbate it with road rage. Remember, other drivers may be as angry with you as you are with them. The… Read more

What happened to EVs?

A few years back, during a big gas price spike, electric vehicles (EVs) were all the talk. Now, in the midst of a gasoline price rollback, much of that talk has subsided. Nevertheless, automotive engineers are quietly working on advancing the technology. For most consumers,… Read more

The need for speed

When the first car was built, I’ll bet its builder wanted to see how fast it would go. As soon as a second car was assembled, I suspect it raced the first car. Since their inception, an exhibition of speed has always been associated with… Read more