Episode 8 of Talking Cars with Consumer Reports features our car experts answering reader questions and comments, submitted through our Facebook pages and YouTube channel. The queries are fielded by Director of Auto Testing Jake Fisher and Senior Engineers Gabe Shenhar and Tom Mutchler.
As you'd expect, question topics range far and wide. We answer questions about EPA vs. real-world fuel economy, what to do with a car after a car accident, and why some head restraints are uncomfortable.
Then we talk about the Lexus IS compact luxury sedan, addressing some YouTube criticism about why our First Drive video veers from Lexus' corporate spin. (The horror!) Another YouTube comment wonders why we don't like continuously-variable-transmissions (CVT) for quick acceleration. Several readers ask about testing off-road capability of SUVs and crossovers. Finally, Jake helps a reader find out what highly modified sports coupe would win a "Fast and Furious"-style drag race.
Along the way, listen for Jake's vocal rendition of engine noises and whether Tom would buy a Lexus LF-A supercar or a used Beechcraft Bonanza airplane for $400,000.
We'll post Episode 9 of the podcast on July 25, featuring a discussion of four newly tested vehicles: Chevrolet Impala, Hyundai Santa Fe, Kia Forte, and Ram 1500. (Look for the road tests coming soon.)
Talking Cars Episode 7 - Tesla battery swap, diesels, and some disappointing test results
Talking Cars Episode 6 - Rapid-fire reader questions
Talking Cars Episode 5 - Life with the Tesla Model S
Talking Cars Episode 4 - Roadsters and the latest test cars, plus answer reader questions
Talking Cars Episode 3 - Tesla, small SUVs, and a sideways track tour
Talking Cars Episode 2 - Highlights from the New York Auto Show
Talking Cars Episode 1 - Car buying advice