This episode of the “Talking Cars with Consumer Reports” video podcast focuses on summertime, even as the kids head back to school and fall is just a few weeks away.

Summer travel season may be about the destination, but how you get there, or just get around, is a major component. Director of Auto Testing Jake Fisher headed east to China and Japan, and he spent a lot of time in rental cars—which were not the SUVs and large sedans that populate fleets back in the U.S.

Associate director Gabe Shenhar traveled to Israel, where he was surprised to learn about the popularity of one particular small SUV. He also road-tripped in the Volkswagen Atlas while taking a son back to college.

And yours truly went all Clark Griswold, putting the family in the modern-day truckster on an East Coast road trip.

Part of our journey this episode included a stint with the Toyota C-HR, noting the similarities and differences between the North American version and one sold in the rest of the world. Plus, we talked about the Chrysler Pacifica Plug-in Hybrid, which may be the best vehicle that Fiat Chrysler Automobile builds.

Last, we answer two questions from Talking Cars viewers, one of which forced us to get out of the garage and onto the track.

As with other "Talking Cars" episodes, this one is available free through Apple Podcasts. (Subscribe to the audio or video.) You'll also find the video on YouTube.

Share your comments below, and let us know if you need advice about choosing your next car.