In this episode of the Autoblog Podcast, Editor-in-Chief Greg Migliore is joined by Senior Editor, Green, John Beltz Snyder. First, they discuss the news, including the possibility of a compact Toyota pickup, new details about the Polestar 3 and Polestar 5, whether Tesla needs a PR department and fresh info about the 2023 Honda HR-V. They also review the GMC Sierra, Kia EV6, Hyundai Kona Electric and Buick Enclave Avenir.
Next, Consumer Editor Jeremy Korzeniewski reports from the ground at the first drive of the Ford Bronco Raptor, and Multimedia Producer Erik Maier joins in to talk about Autoblog's Father's Day gift guide and other deals.
Send us your questions for the Mailbag and Spend My Money at: Podcast@Autoblog.com. #AutoblogPodcast #CarPodcast #cartalk #cars
GREG MIGLIORE: Welcome back to "The Autoblog Podcast." I'm Greg Migliore. We have an awesome show for you. It is super-sized. It is loaded to the gills with all kinds of things. But I'm going to bring in senior editor for all things green, John Snyder. How are you, man?
JOHN SNYDER: I can't complain. Happy, healthy, and coming into the summer-- a whole different vibe around here in Michigan. So looking forward to it.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, I've really been enjoying the longer days and the warmer weather. I was literally outside last night at like 9:30 moving some mulch to try to get that right aesthetic for the flower beds out front. You can't do that in November, you know?
JOHN SNYDER: Right. Yeah. I'm about ready to take some slow evening cruises in the Beetle with the windows down.
GREG MIGLIORE: There you go. There you go. I need to get to the driving range while there's extra hours, get some more golf in. Last night, I did do your tofu recipe. I forgot to tell you this offline, so I'll tell you this on the podcast.
JOHN SNYDER: Great.
GREG MIGLIORE: Worked out great. The corn starch made-- corn starch, right-- I think that made a nice little crispy kind of texture for the tofu. The noodles came out a little squishy. That was my fault. But just the jar Thai sauce was pretty nice too.
Worked out good. I call it two-beer tofu Tuesday, because I usually have a beer. My rule is if you're boiling water, you should open a beer or something.
JOHN SNYDER: That's a good rule.
GREG MIGLIORE: Gives you about 10, 15 minutes, you let the boil come to a roll, and, hey, you know, you're a beer into your night.
JOHN SNYDER: That's brilliant.
GREG MIGLIORE: I suggest that. There's no Spend My Money this week, but if you're going to spend your money, buy a case of beer, or a sixer, or whatever you're doing while you're boiling water. I had some Sam Adams cherry wheat-- just kind of a nice, like, you know, summer kind of taste. So yeah, worked out pretty well.
JOHN SNYDER: I've been enjoying some of the sort of farmhouse styles from Brewery Vivant.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yes.
JOHN SNYDER: And then my sister gave me a bunch of random goses. I forget what company they're from. It's not a Michigan company, but they're all really good. I love a nice crisp gose.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. Those are good. Farmhouse beers, I think, are good, especially in, like, the spring and the summer. It's kind of the right kind of vibe, I think.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah.
GREG MIGLIORE: Hey, summer beers, drop them in the comments, hit us up on Twitter. firstname.lastname@example.org for summer, beers but also Spend My Moneys. We'd love to get a few of those in.
JOHN SNYDER: And I did see the email from a listener about the Boreal de Calabaza from Jolly Pumpkin.
GREG MIGLIORE: OK. Tremendous beer.
JOHN SNYDER: I believe it's pumpkin. I think it has pumpkin in it, but you don't really taste pumpkin. It's not like pumpkin spice. It's sort of a sour thing going on. And it's big and flavorful.
Ann Arbor, we have Jolly Pumpkin down here. And then they've got a couple of other places around the state.
GREG MIGLIORE: We were just at that one maybe a month ago-- the one in Midtown in Detroit. I had one of the farmhouse ales-- one of the lighter ones, kind of lower ABVs. Very solid. It was also barely noon, so I wasn't looking to really, like, you know, downshift into a day of drinking.
It was just kind of a family day, and farmhouse ale, with what was essentially a pretty early lunch even for me, was pretty good. But should probably get into the show-- got so much to cover.
All right, so we're going to run through news. Compact Toyota pickup, this story really resonated on the site-- we're going to break down what we think that means. Polestar 3 and 5. We've got one is actually here, the other we're seeing sort of European Union patent renderings.
John and I are going to just play a little tennis handball here. Do you think Elon Musk needs a PR person? Automotive news suggested this. I don't think they're wrong. I don't think it would hurt, but it's interesting theory. And then there is some specs and pricing out on the Honda HR-V, and it's a pretty significant update to that small crossover.
We had a long-termer a few years back. It generally was pretty mediocre in all aspects. So what we'll talk about if we think they've moved the ball a little bit forward. Huge drive section. We're going to keep this kind of tight, though, if you will.
So GMC Sierra, it's going back today. It's sitting out in front of my house. $70,000-plus. It's Denali. It's pretty wild. It has the DuraMax diesel under the hood. I drove the EV6 last week-- also nice.
I have a driveway test up that went up yesterday. Check that out. I thought that car was beautiful. I can't wait to talk about that a little bit. John drove the Kona Electric and the Buick Enclave Avenir. It's been a while since we've talked about the Enclave, even though we have been talking about the Wildcat and the Electra on the podcast. So pretty big show.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah.
GREG MIGLIORE: Close things out with Father's Day gift guide. We're going to bring in podcast producer and Autoblog multimedia producer Eric Meyer, who's going to talk about some of the picks. John and I have some takes on those-- and just some of the deals that are still out there if you're looking to get yourself something or get, you know, somebody important in your life a good Father's Day gift. So let's jump right in.
This Toyota compact truck-- this would be slotting below the Tacoma. It would be, essentially, a head-on Maverick competitor, which is something maybe the original Tacoma, you know, when it was smaller, it tended to fill that slot. I really think there's a ton of space for Toyota to do this.
I think they have some brand credibility to play in this area too, much like Ford does. And I think they could get in there. You know, Hyundai is in there with the Santa Cruz. It's not doing quite as well as the Maverick is. But I think Toyota could get in there and go basically head-to-head with Ford.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah. I mean, Ford's a truck company and Toyota, you know, they've been making trucks for a really long time. And first of all, let me say, I love the fact that we're getting some of these compact pickups now. I think it's a great segment.
A lot of people, especially right now with the high gas prices, you might be tired of commuting in your F-150 or whatever. So yeah, being able to get into something smaller, and save some gas, and still have a lot of that utility makes a lot of sense. For Toyota, what I would really like to see is them use their hybrid technology.
It's super solid. Ford used hybrid tech as standard in the Maverick, which I thought was a brilliant move, making the entry version the very efficient version, which makes sense. And I think Toyota would be smart to do the same thing. They've got just a tremendous hybrid powertrain that has proven itself for decades now.
Yeah, I think that would be a great move for them. I would want more headroom in it than in the Tacoma, though. The Taco is a little low on headroom. That's my one complaint there.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, I agree with you. I think they have to go hybrid for this application. I think the Maverick is very usable. You know, it's comfortable. It's drivable, pick your sort of cliche, if you will.
But I mean, you got a decent sized bed. It's not really much work to drive, as opposed to something like the Ranger, which is a little bit of work to drive. You know, I could see them coming in and making this a product that could really work for a lot of different people.
So I mean, I think Ford, essentially, used the Maverick as a replacement for the Focus. And Toyota has made no indication that they're going to move away from anything smaller, because their car lineup is doing pretty well, actually. But this could really augment that from sales. And you know, they have that attitude too-- like, a cool small Toyota truck that can really do something.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah. I mean, they know how to make a good-looking truck. Yeah, if they could keep sort of the Tacoma and the Tundra styling, don't make it shout hybrid or something, like the Prius-- you know, stick with the truck styling and I think you'll see some success there.
GREG MIGLIORE: In our article, you can see we close things out with we expect a new Tacoma next year, a new 4Runner the year after that. So the timeline roughly could be, like, 2025 or something. You know, I didn't actually realize that Tacoma wasn't really a mid-sizer, per se, until, like, 2005. So you know, for a lot of its history, it was actually a little on the smaller side.
JOHN SNYDER: We've seen so much bloat from everywhere that, yeah, lots of those cars have gotten bigger. And now automakers are able to sort of replace those older versions of their original models with a new nameplate that's smaller and just sort of fills that space that they stepped out of.
GREG MIGLIORE: Do you think they would use the Hilux name?
JOHN SNYDER: Probably not. Just because, you know, that's already a global thing.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.
JOHN SNYDER: They would probably pick a new name for this. But the Hilux is great.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.
JOHN SNYDER: Bring us a Hilux.
GREG MIGLIORE: All right, so shifting gears over to Polestar-- some news this week. We saw some renderings of the 5, which looks pretty great. And then the 3 was, like, officially, officially debuted. It's a dual motor setup.
We know it's going to be built in South Carolina, which is kind of cool. And this is the crossover of the field for Polestar so far. I've driven the 1 and the 2. You, I believe, have as well. My column on the 1 just went up an hour ago, so timing is pretty fortuitous.
I'm really intrigued by this. This is what's going to make Polestar, like, a Tesla fighter-- you know, something very, like, more mainstream, as opposed to the 1, which, as I wrote, that's, like, a Pebble Beach car, you know? And it was a hybrid, actually, ironically.
So this is one that I think competitors include a range of things, like the Model Y, the Model X, the Fisker Ocean. I don't know, you know, the Chevy Bolt-- all sorts of different things. But this is definitely a mainstream play.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah. It's kind of hard to tell from the photo how big this car actually is. But you know, it's going to be built on the same platform as the Next Gen Volvo XC90. So there could be some good space inside of there. With EVs, they're able to package them differently and give a lot of that space that was maybe used by mechanical things, transmission, internal combustion engine, and fill that space with other mechanical stuff, and give more space back to the cabin.
So it could be one of those things where it's sort of House of Leaves bigger on the inside than it is on the outside, especially if they are using that platform. Especially with the new XC90 coming out, they're going to have a pretty clean sheet to work with. So yeah, looking forward to seeing more of this.
From the photo, I like the look of it. It's got that big glass roof that we've seen in the Polestar 2. Hard to tell kind of what's going on up front. There looks to be some sort of spoiler, like, on the hood.
But there's also a teaser video that shows a lot of the lighting. And it looks really nice.
GREG MIGLIORE: Sounds good. Sounds good. What do you think of the 5? That's, again, even a little bit farther down the field here for the Polestar lineup.
JOHN SNYDER: So the patent drawings I don't think do this car justice, just because there's not a lot of detail. You get the shape. And you get some details of the shape. But once you get color and texture onto the car, it really changes it.
But they did a pretty good job of borrowing the silhouette from the precept concept. And I really like the rear end of this car. It really reminds me of the Polestar 1 in that way.
It's kind of like a stretched out Polestar 1-- less chunky of a styling than the Polestar 2, more of that sleeker, sportier, sort of looks like it could be a good Grand Touring car for four adults. But yeah, I'm looking forward to that too. Polestar has proven that it can make entertaining cars that have completely unique design inside and out.
And you know, they really stand out from anything else on the road. Whenever I see a Polestar 2, which is not very often, my eyes are drawn to it immediately. The design is just fantastic. So really looking forward to seeing their new designs on these new vehicles as they come out.
GREG MIGLIORE: I think I do see some of the Polestar 1 in the 5. And you know, this could be intriguing. I think it's just another, like, you know, marker in the Polestar lineup as they try to grow that brand.
And you know, when I look at just some of, like, the startup EV makers, you know, I give Polestar-- I think they have a little bit of a head start because they're obviously backed by Volvo. They're not really a startup.
JOHN SNYDER: Right.
GREG MIGLIORE: But they are a startup brand, you know? And getting some market awareness, getting some space in that Volvo, like, complex down in South Carolina, you know, they're making significant gains. And I'm intrigued to see where they go. I've been impressed with both the products that I've tested.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah, me too. And yeah, they're backed by bigger companies-- you know, Volvo and [INAUDIBLE] but they're going forward with that small automaker mentality, sort of doing things their own way with their stores and whatnot. And I hope they keep that identity. I think they will.
But it's nice that they have that larger support to rely on with a Volvo in terms of manufacturing, and design, and things like that. They have inspiration to draw from.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, definitely. And, hey, you can still get the Orrefors crystal shifter in some of the cars-- at least you could in the 1.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah.
GREG MIGLIORE: So yeah. Cool. So shifting over to somebody who is a legacy EV company-- can we call Tesla that? I don't know, they've been around for 15-plus years now.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah, if you qualify it by EV company, they are the legacy EV company.
GREG MIGLIORE: Exactly.
JOHN SNYDER: They're not like a legacy automaker, but as far as EV companies go, yes, absolutely.
GREG MIGLIORE: Do you think Elon Musk needs a PR guy either for Tesla or just in general? The reason I ask is many of you out there probably read "Automotive News" too. They're a very serious, you know, flagship industry source for the car business. There is an opinion, I guess is what I would call it, an editorial on this subject.
And I thought, that's interesting. They used to have a PR department-- and this is all-- I admit, this is a little inside baseball for people. But beyond, like, having somebody else to buy you and me drinks, do you think this would be good for Tesla?
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah. I mean, they're a big company with-- you know, they have a huge effect on the stock market and the automotive industry. And, really, their only mouthpiece besides their fans is Elon Musk. And he's proven to be a very strong personality, but also kind of erratic.
And I don't know, it would seem wise to have someone at the company who can sort of-- I know Elon Musk, him being the person talking is trying to provide transparency. You know, this is coming from the top. This is coming from me. I'm telling you, blah blah blah.
But also, you know, there's some obfuscation there. You know, every tweet moves the market or something. And so having a PR division that could communicate some of the things-- basically answer people's questions about the company, because, you know, when people ask Tesla something generally, you don't get a comment.
And there's no one really to ask except for going on Twitter and tweeting Musk directly. So just to have a department that can communicate those things and clarify things Musk says or things that the company is doing, rather than it being leaked emails or whatever, I think would be-- I mean, that's just good business.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. No, I agree with you. I think most major companies have a PR department. There's obviously downsides, you know, because, you know, a PR person's job is to advocate for the company. That's great. That's how it works. And sometimes that butts heads with what we're trying to do as journalists.
But that's just the way the game's played. No big deal there. I do think it would help Elon Musk, and Tesla specifically-- not to talk about all his other ventures-- but I think it would help them, because he would be able to, like, sort of clear things up there. Would be fewer, like, what did you mean by that? Suddenly the SEC is asking questions.
And you know, I think it would also help get the cars in the hands of people, you know? Cynically, and I know there's this kind of school of thought out there that they don't want us testing these cars any more than we really can, because we will be negative, we'll find negative things about them that, you know, some of the more, like, you know, true believers of Tesla are willing to overlook. I don't think that's the case.
I've driven Teslas. I like them. You know, I think that's, like, a misnomer that the mainstream media is going to carve up Tesla once we sink our teeth into the cars. That's just not true. Like, you know, most cars are good.
I do think things would probably come to light that currently don't that aren't particularly flattering for the company. Like, we would get more of an opportunity to maybe examine some of the build quality, some of the interface things, really look at, like, the features like autopilot and be like, well, really, what are they doing here?
You know, that being said, though, you know, Elon Musk is a good promoter of himself and his message. Whether you agree with it or not, I'm not going to go there. But he is, like-- you know, there's politicians who can do this very effectively on both sides of the aisle. To use, perhaps, a less polarizing one, Bob Lutz was great at this.
Can you imagine if Bob Lutz was, like, active on Twitter 20 years ago and Twitter was a thing? Like, I mean, he was-- I mean, Elon Musk is really a lot like Bob Lutz in many ways.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah.
GREG MIGLIORE: He's somebody who the PR department was just, they'd throw up their hands. You'd call them for comment and GM's PR guys would say things like, oh gosh, what did he say now? You know, and I remember-- but it was good for Bob and it was good for the company, really.
That's why they wanted him is he was a brilliant spokesperson who had all the credibility in the world, you know? And he was accessible. So I'll say this-- like, even though I do think a PR department would help Tesla and Elon Musk with the blocking and tackling of communication, he's doing an effective job of promoting himself and his company right now in a way that, say, Bob Lutz did 20 years ago.
So I could see both sides of it. Like, as a journalist, like, yeah, of course, it'd be nice if when they put out a new car we could call somebody to test it. And they used to do that. We did a video shoot-- three-day XR shoot. And the PR person, she delivered it right to, I think it was the hotel, or the track, or wherever we were testing it. Like, you know, they have had this. It's not the, like, craziest thing to propose.
We had one for Tech of the Year. We drove it up north. They delivered it right to our office, and they updated it on the way, and we had a new version of autopilot, I think, by the time we hit Traverse City or Petoskey. So we're not reinventing the wheel here. It would be a tough job.
But I think caged correctly or positioned correctly, like, this would be a win-win for people who want to know more about Tesla. That's how I would put it.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah. I mean, just being able to get basic questions answered-- you know, how does this work? People want to know. You know, your fans want to know about this. If I've got a question for any other automaker, I just say, like, hey, what's the deal with this new engine? How does this one get the extra MPG or whatever?
And it's really interesting. You can sort of dive deep into the technology and appreciate it. But yeah, Tesla does not need a marketing department whatsoever.
GREG MIGLIORE: Right.
JOHN SNYDER: But I do think a PR department would be useful.
GREG MIGLIORE: All right. Sounds good. Let's move over to the Honda HR-V-- a little less controversial. We have some specs and pricing announced just yesterday, actually. This is-- basically now we know everything we want to know about the HR-V.
It's a little bit larger. The engines have a little bit more power. It has more of a grown-up look, I think. The old one really kind of looked like a small crossover in every way. This looks a little more substantial. If you had told me this was the CR-V, I might believe you without looking too closely at it. It has a little bit more of a presence. The old one was pretty mediocre in every way.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah.
GREG MIGLIORE: I think some of the bona fides are better now, though.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah. I mean, just the interior design is way improved. They borrowed a lot from the Civic, which was a great move. The new Civic interior is really cool, excellent. I love that mesh metal vent across the dash. I think that's a really cool look.
I'm glad they carried that over. But yeah, this was a car that desperately needed updating-- like, a total rework, essentially. It was just so old. And you know, they got-- I was sad that they did away with the Fit instead of this car. The Honda Fit was great. But now that this new one's out, I might be a little bit more happy with it than the previous generation.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. I love that grill. It reminds me of, like, the S-2000 Club Racer a little bit vibe there. I think you got to really kind of want to see that, I guess. But I think it's a good look. And you know, this is-- I think they needed something like this to make, like, the lower end of their lineup a little more competitive.
I like the Fit too. That was so much fun to drive. But even the outgoing HR-V was more substantial than that thing. You know, I remember not particularly enjoying that car on the highway or in winter. So this is much more palatable for, like, a long trip or something.
But I mean, the interior looks a lot better. This is, you know, another one I'm going to be really intrigued to drive. There's a lot of interesting cars coming this year. We haven't heard if they're going to offer a hybrid or not. It's available in some overseas markets. Pricing is pretty-- they're pretty aggressive on it, I think.
I mean, granted, again, this is the bottom of their lineup. Base model does start under $25 grand, which, according to our article, is about an $1,800 raise. So you know, I think it's timely. You know, like, nothing's cheap right now, including the Honda HR-V.
JOHN SNYDER: In terms of, like, the rest of the the market, and prices, and supply and demand, I think a price increase, especially with a complete redesign like this, is warranted for sure. but. It's still quite affordable, starting under $25,000.
GREG MIGLIORE: Sounds good. Should we talk about some cars, some trucks?
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah. Yeah.
GREG MIGLIORE: All right, sounds good. So I just drove the GMC Sierra. It's the first time I've actually driven a Sierra in a little while, to be perfectly honest. It has the DuraMax diesel, which I think is a lot of fun. I drove a Cadillac Escalade with that about, I guess, it's been about a month-- three weeks ago now.
So I've been enjoying the diesel and, like, literally everything. This one is pretty nice. I was trying to find the Monroney here. Sticker is just under $80 grand. So this may be the most expensive, like, mainstream truck I've driven. It's $77,645, and then you have to add in another $1,700 for destination.
But this is the Denali Ultimate. So they found a way to add another layer of just even more lavish, luxurious, but still kind of, like, GMC-themed, like, stuff onto it. It has super cruise, which is very impressive. It's a really solid truck.
I mean, when I drove this, it's like this is why, to me, there is no Cadillac full-size pickup truck. You know, they don't really need one. It makes more sense to put it under the GMC banner.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah, 100%. And yeah, that DuroMax is a pleasant engine. You get pretty decent fuel economy, lots of torque. And you know, it's not really loud or clunky. Yeah.
It's been a while since I've driven the Sierra also. But I haven't been in the Denali Ultimate. But yeah, that is-- I mean, that's a statement. I do see how a Cadillac pickup would have way different styling.
But in terms of equipment, and comfort, and luxury technology, the Denali has all that. And yeah, I think the look of it is more of a truck person's look than, I think, Cadillac could get away with.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yes.
JOHN SNYDER: But yeah. I love that grill on the Denali Ultimate. Was yours sort of the almost blacked out, like--
GREG MIGLIORE: Yes.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah.
GREG MIGLIORE: Titanium rush metallic, $500 option, which looks really slick. This is, I think, the best-looking Sierra I've ever driven. It's just very subtle.
It almost has one of those-- it looks like it should be floating in the North Atlantic in 1917. It's just gray and, like, sinister. It's got that kind of dreadnought vibe. I think the vibe of the Sierra versus the Silverado, they've always been kind of alter egos.
I always thought the curvy fenders on the Sierra were maybe a little bit much. And then the Silverado is now way more of a demonstrative design. The Sierra seems to have kind of evolved into being a little more buttoned down.
But with the gray paint, we'll call it gray, 22-inch low gloss black aluminum wheels, which are included with the, like, Denali Ultimate package. It just looks great.
You know, it really is-- in some ways, it's so sinister you wouldn't look at this right off the bat and realize this is the pinnacle. But I mean, for me, that's fine. That's what I would want. I don't want to drive something that's, like, ostentatious. This is, like-- it's everything, but without being too over the top.
JOHN SNYDER: What was the interior finish like?
GREG MIGLIORE: It had a lot of nice, like, wood graining, if you will-- kind of that rich sort of, like, very deep-ish brown, almost like an oxblood. A lot of interesting textures, super comfortable. Put a lot of miles on it-- full grain leather, as they say.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, microsuede headliner. Yeah, I mean, inside, it was as luxurious as any luxury car I've been in. I think GMC is right up there with Ram, I think, as far as having some of their top trims-- some of the nicest, most, like, bougiest interiors as far as, like, in the truck segment.
And to your point, I love the grill-- just that kind of, like, dark gray treatment on an already kind of dark gray body. It's a good-looking truck. A lot of fun to drive, too.
JOHN SNYDER: What did you think of the latest iteration of super cruise?
GREG MIGLIORE: It works well. They've evolved it since 2018-- whatever it was '17, '18-- we gave it the Tech of the Year Award for "Autoblog," which was a step forward then. But I think General Motors is doing a great job of, like, making this technology accessible.
So, like, it's in a number of products. You know, I remember when they said they were putting it in the Sierra. You know, I don't think it's in every across the trim levels. But I mean, it's starting to roll out now across the lineup. It's in some other Cadillacs. So I think--
JOHN SNYDER: Chevy Bolt EUV.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. And maybe it is more widely available in the Sierra lineup. But I think in some ways this is a technology that I don't think GM gets enough credit for. I think they've done something cool, let me put it that way.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah. I was able to test the latest version in the Escalade a few months back and was really impressed with just how well it works. And the fact that it can do lane changes now is really nice. And yeah, there are more and more highways where it actually works too.
They're increasing the coverage for sort of the green zones where you can actually take your hands off the wheel. But yeah, I recently drove the F-150 lightning with BlueCruise, and that feels like Super Cruise felt on the CT6 when it first came out.
It feels like BlueCruise is maybe just a step behind Super Cruise at this point. But yeah, Super Cruise is pretty impressive. And I'd like to try the Super Cruise with towing and things like that at some point. But I'm glad to see it in more vehicles.
You know, some people hate that sort of tech. I think it's really neat. And there's something really satisfying about taking your feet off the pedals, and taking your hands off the wheel, and putting it on your lap, and still feeling safe. You know, Super Cruise does a very good job of communicating what it's doing, and what it sees, and what it expects you to do, and when it expects you to do it, which is, I think, part of what makes Super Cruise so great.
But yeah, it keeps a good distance, follows the curves well, and just works really well. And you feel comfortable taking your hands off the wheel, which that can be an odd sensation-- giving up control, even the tiniest modicum of control. But you know that the truck is monitoring you while you're monitoring what it's doing.
So you know, you're still sort of co-driving with Super Cruise. But yeah, it's an interesting sensation. And it's one that I actually find kind of calming.
GREG MIGLIORE: I'll say this-- when your hands are on the wheel, it's a lot of fun to drive a truck. I had the back kind of window slitted, so like you get that crosswind going through-- that you only get that in like trucks, and in the 4Runner, and Jeeps. It's really you're in that like kind of just adventure mode.
We didn't do anything adventurous with it. We took it Royal Oak and got, like, bagels, and coffee, and walked around, and went to a bookstore-- not exactly the kind of thing you normally do with, like, full-size pickup truck. But I mean, it's just--
JOHN SNYDER: Well, that's probably what most people do with their full-size pickup truck.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.
JOHN SNYDER: They're hauling stuff, you know, a percentage of the time.
GREG MIGLIORE: I was so close going to get some mulch, but, like, last night, as I mentioned, during my after hours mulching, I don't really need any mulch. I've got a good trench going-- like, an embankment on my front-- like, by the house. I just moved some from the back.
And I was kind of like-- I gave myself this little deadline. Like, if you're going to redo the flowerbeds this year, you've got the Sierra, you've got the diesel, go do it. If you're not going to do it this weekend, which you really don't need to do-- you know, like, you've got enough mulch here, man. You don't need to go fill up the trunk and get more. You're just going to have it, like, start cascading down and create more problems.
Like, sort of take the B grade, give yourself a win, and go weed the patio. So that's kind of how my approach was. But now I do need to probably get like two or three bags, which could go in anything. It could go in the Rolls Royce that's supposed to be arriving any minute here just to do the tree.
That'll be my other final project. But I'm not going to do the flower beds. Next time you see a car dropoff, let me know what you think. Let me know if you think I should have gone all in and gone for, like, the A grade, or you think just this, like, sort of B-plus is enough.
I think it's fine. But yeah, man, the Sierra was kind of my break-even point. It's like June 7, June 8, you kind of move on to other projects and take the decent grade.
JOHN SNYDER: Fair enough.
GREG MIGLIORE: I drove the EV6, which I also considered throwing some mulch in. Super impressed with that. I did a little bit of a road test because the styling, really, I was really taken with it. They call it a crossover, but the dynamics, the proportions-- to me, it's more like almost a sport wagon.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah.
GREG MIGLIORE: It's so much fun to drive. I had the single motor version.
JOHN SNYDER: Oh nice.
GREG MIGLIORE: It had this mat-- it also had kind of a matte gray paint, which really just set it off. It's funny how, like, something as simple as paint-- you can put that paint on a Honda Fit or something, but then when you put it on a car that's that forward-looking, that technology is just advanced-- it's an electric car, and I found it really rewarding to drive.
It was sporty. I had the rear-wheel drive model-- again, the single engine. Steering was good. And the interior, I thought, was pretty clever too. You can essentially toggle between, like, the HVAC and then the audio system, which I thought was really clever.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah, that one took me a little bit of getting used to. Couldn't figure out how to switch it. There's like a little touch capacitive bar. But yeah, I drove this shortly after driving the Ioniq 5-- and two unique takes on the same platform and offering very different vibes. The EV6 definitely has a more driver-oriented, sporty sort of feeling behind the wheel, whereas the Ioniq 5 is more lounge-like, let's say.
If you're going to be flogging your EV around, I would want to be in the cockpit of the EV6. It just feels like a really good driver-oriented cabin. And I think from the exterior, you also get sort of a more sporty vibe from this car. It does have a slightly shorter wheelbase than the Ioniq 5.
The EV6 has the same wheelbase as the Palisade Telluride, whereas the Ioniq is a few inches longer, actually. Which made the Ioniq 5 a little more stable on the highway. I mean, they're both big, a lot bigger than they look.
But the EV6 is a little more playful in the corners because of that slightly shorter wheelbase. But yeah, it looks sportier than the Ioniq 5. The Ioniq 5 looks, I don't know, kind of weird-- but in a way that I really like. Whereas the EV6, I think, is more mainstream attractive. It's not a mainstream looking vehicle, but I think it has a broader appeal.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, I would agree with that. It's interesting that the more risk-taking sporty one is the one that turned out being more mainstream. But I like the Ioniq. And when I saw the Bolt, I was like, no, EV6. Then I drove the Ioniq 5, very taken with it.
I keep trying to throw it back to almost like an '80s kind of theme with the headlights. I don't know, that's what I keep trying to position it as.
JOHN SNYDER: It looks like something out of "Robocop."
GREG MIGLIORE: Yes, exactly.
JOHN SNYDER: Movie set.
GREG MIGLIORE: Exactly. But then I was in the EV6 and I'm like, this is gorgeous. It's sporty. There's another guy at preschool drop-off who has one and I keep trying to be like, who is this guy? You know, but I guess they're actually for sale. Like, they're out there. It's not as hard to get as you think.
JOHN SNYDER: And the Ioniq is not available in every state yet.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.
JOHN SNYDER: Whereas the EV6, that was their goal was to have one that at every dealer by the time their Super Bowl ad aired. Yeah, I think that's a huge win for Kia over their sibling. They're very competitive even though they're from the same company.
But I think that's a huge plus for Kia is that they were able to offer it nationwide from the get-go. It's just going to get more people looking at it, more heads turned, and more people interested, and more people in the car.
GREG MIGLIORE: So let's talk about, speaking of Hyundai, you were in the Kona recently. You went down to Nashville, you drove a number of, actually, Hyundai vehicles. The Kona, though, what do you think?
JOHN SNYDER: It's so much fun to drive. It's a lot different than the Ioniq 5 and EV6.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yes. Different generations.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah. Much smaller. Front-wheel drive, but, man, it's fun. It's still, you know, super sporty. You know, it's got, I think, 201 horsepower, close to 300 pound feet of torque. So this little thing gets cruising pretty quickly. And it's so small and it rotates really nicely.
I would love to have one of these to commute in. The one drawback for someone like me, with kids, is that the rear seat is small. But if that's not a problem for you, the actual rear cargo area is pretty spacious.
It'd be a great car for weekend trips. We got a range of 258 miles, which is great. And so you can travel pretty far on a single charge.
And if you have any sort of good fast charging in between you and your destination, you could road trip in this thing and it would be fun. It's super sprightly. You know, some cars, the naturally aspirated internal combustion engines are going to bog down in the hills. This thing, it'll just rock it right up any hill.
Plenty of torque. It'll spin the front wheels a little bit if you give it a good boot. And I really like the styling of it too. I think it's still a good-looking car, especially in certain colors. They've got sort of this, like, sage green that's really nice. They have a bright blue that's also really fetching.
And then inside, it's comfortable. The materials are mostly good, especially in the limited trim level. And you have a digital instrument panel in front of you and easy to use infotainment-- just all around a great little vehicle.
GREG MIGLIORE: I think it does a good job of being a good marker for Hyundai's commitment to value. And, like, they'll chase that all day. You know, you can still get-- like, their price points are still very aggressive across the board, really. I mean, even the Palisade, you know, their sort of flagship SUV, you could get a basic one, you know, in the $30s still. So you know, they'll chase that all day. And I think that's good for them.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah, for sure. I mean, it's one of the most affordable EVs out there.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.
JOHN SNYDER: It starts at $35, $295. There's also, you can get the $7,500 tax credit for it. Really, there's only a few other electric vehicles that are more affordable-- the Bolts, the Leaf, and the Mazda MX-30 if you live in California, which only has 100 miles driving range, and the Mini Cooper SE is about the same price as the Kona Electric, which is also a really fun car, also small.
But that only has 110 miles of range. The fact that you get 258 miles of the Kona, that's a huge value in terms of miles per dollar.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, I've been impressed with the Kona over the years, just the different versions of it. It fared quite well in our small compact car comparison a couple of years ago. The Kia Soul won it, but this one had its defenders, let's put it that way.
JOHN SNYDER: I was one of them.
GREG MIGLIORE: You were one of them. I liked it too. Really the only thing we didn't like in that contest was the HR-V. And honestly, that was, I think, on a subliminal level why I wanted to talk about the HR-V updates is I just had such, like, a mediocre feel for that car, that crossover in the segment, including things like the Kona.
We tested a nice version of it. Just had moved so much past it even at that point that, you know, we'll see. So I did like the HR-V, though, driving around that fall-- took it to a lot of cider mills, I'll say that. This is a few years back.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah.
GREG MIGLIORE: Close out the drive section with the Buick Enclave Avenir. It has been a long time since I've driven the Enclave. How is it these days?
JOHN SNYDER: It's feeling a little long in the tooth, to be honest. But it is very, very comfortable. The Avenir depends on your taste. I think it's a very mature design. And everything looks really nice.
The quilted leather is beautiful. The curvaceous wood trim is also really nice looking. It's mostly a quiet vehicle, very comfortable. This one had the adaptive suspension, which makes for a very calm ride. And you know, it's a very roomy vehicle.
It's got more cargo space than a lot of other three-rows. There's a lot of space behind the third row. So you know, for a vehicle that is less than the price of a BMW or Mercedes, you get most of the comfort, a lot of the tech, and all of the space for a better price.
There's some things about it that I just don't really like-- the feel of the switchgear, for instance, feels like it could have been plucked out of, you know, the Chevy Malibu or something, you know? And the design itself is not new.
It's getting kind of musty. But it is attractive despite its age. But yeah, I think the space is a big thing. And then the amount of luxury you get for the price-- those two things put together make it pretty attractive if you like the looks.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, I think it's just, to your point, it's a little long in the tooth. Doesn't have to be super cutting edge, if you will. I mean, it's a Buick-- like, basically, I think they may call it a midsize, but it's a large SUV crossover, I guess, technically, because it is unibody.
But it is what it is. I mean, I've generally liked driving them. You know, they're nice-ish. But there's nothing that really distinguishes it. Looking at the pictures in your story, which definitely check that out if you're wondering what we're talking about-- you should check out John's story, because it's one of the only places you may see a Buick Enclave these days, it seems like, because I don't see too many of them on the roads.
The infotainment seems a bit dated. I don't know if there's way to option that up. I mean, the Avenir is the top trim.
JOHN SNYDER: That's what you get.
GREG MIGLIORE: That's it. Yeah, it's not great, Bob. The Acadia, I think, has a nicer infotainment than that-- some of the nicer trims, or at least presented nicer. Buick has some big things in store. This is a volume play. It is what it is.
JOHN SNYDER: It is what it is.
GREG MIGLIORE: All right, so something that's a little more exciting than the Buick Avenir Enclave is the Ford Bronco Raptor. That's kind of awesome, right?
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah.
GREG MIGLIORE: All right, so Jeremy Korzeniewski, our senior editor for all things consumer, is out driving this thing. So, Jeremy, what's going on?
JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Hey, thanks, Greg. Yeah, this is Jeremy from "Autoblog." I'm outside of Palm Springs, California, driving the new Ford Bronco Raptor. There's a lot that I can't talk about yet. I can't tell you what it's like to drive. I can't tell you how well it tackles any of the off-roading that we did or what it's like to drive on the road.
You'll have to come back on June 20 to read all of our driving impressions. But I can tell you about the terrain that we drove on. And that'll indirectly tell you a little bit about the Bronco Raptor's capabilities without me breaking any embargoes.
I can tell you that we did two distinct types of off-road driving on this event-- rock-crawling with absolutely huge boulders, sand covered everything that we could see-- inclines, declines. And the other kind of driving that we did a lot of was high speed desert running-- even jumps. We ran over whoops, we ran over just huge, huge bumps.
And if we had enough speed, then we'd get all four tires in the air. And that is synonymous with what the Ford Raptor program is all about. Actual parts of the off-road course that we were driving today were used for the 2022 running of King of the Hammers. If you're not familiar with King of The Hammers, you should probably Google that.
It is an intense off-road competition with purpose-built vehicles. And the terrain is some of the most difficult terrain that you're going to come across here in the United States. In fact, I would say it's probably the hardest and most intense off-roading that I have ever done in an automaker-sponsored press trip. And I've done a lot of them, including others from Ford.
So just know that Ford's mindset with this vehicle is, as you'd expect from a Raptor-branded vehicle, is to conquer the toughest terrain that you're going to come across. I can't tell you how it handled any of on road or off-road driving. However, I can tell you that nothing broke.
And keep in mind the kind of terrain that I'm talking about we drove on. To make it all work, it needs massive suspension travel-- the kind of suspension travel that you can measure in feet, not just inches. Fox live valve shocks, 37-inch tires, which are just absolutely huge in person. And the fact that they're such big tires and they sit enough outside the regular body work-- like, more than 8 inches wider than a regular Bronco-- that requires just an incredible set of flares to go over the wheels and tires.
It has an incredible presence on the road. If you see one of these things drive by, you'll immediately know that it's a Bronco Raptor. You're not going to confuse it with any other type of Bronco that Ford builds. This is the top of the line off-road design from Ford.
It has beefy frame modifications. I'll talk more about those in my write-up. 3-liter twin turbo V6 with 418 horsepower and 440 pound feet of torque. Keep in mind that is a turbocharged engine-- a relatively small displacement V6 for that kind of power. So I'll talk about more what impact that has on the driving experience.
I can also talk about the weather. It has been intensely hot here in the California desert. I saw temperatures as high as 108 degrees today while I was out testing. And fortunately, the air conditioning meant that I didn't overheat. And it's not breaking any embargoes for me to tell you that the vehicle didn't overheat either.
So more to come on the Ford Bronco Raptor. Like I said, you'll have to get the full story on June 20. So stay tuned for that. All right, back to Greg.
GREG MIGLIORE: All right, that was the latest edition of "Dispatches." Got to give some credit here-- this was John's idea, sort of like port of call letters, dispatches from wherever our editors are in the world. We'll get Jeremy back on in the coming weeks to tell you more about what it was like to drive that rough and tough Bronco. But thanks, Jeremy. Be safe. We'll talk to you soon.
So yeah, pretty excited to hear more about that. We should now bring in-- what's that, John?
JOHN SNYDER: Definitely.
GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, definitely. I think embargo is going to be up pretty soon. I mean, this is going to be sweet.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah.
GREG MIGLIORE: So let's now bring in Eric Meyer, our multimedia producer. He's going to walk us through the Father's Day gift guide.
ERIC MEYER: What's up, guys? Thanks for having me on.
GREG MIGLIORE: Good to see you.
ERIC MEYER: Yeah, likewise. So we are talking about Father's Day. You two are both fathers. I am not. But something--
JOHN SNYDER: You've got a dog.
ERIC MEYER: True. True. I think there's a strong internet debate about whether or not being a dog dad counts.
JOHN SNYDER: Kids are easier.
ERIC MEYER: Oh man. Direct all comments to John Snyder on that one.
GREG MIGLIORE: Hey, my dog has thrown up three times this week, whereas my kid has not. So I'm just saying, on the level of degree of difficulty, Blue has been a bit harder. Let's put it that way.
ERIC MEYER: Touche. Touche. I guess that's true. But yeah, so one thing that I really like that we do-- it's kind of become an annual tradition at this point at "Autoblog." We will just poll the staff and see either what they're planning on getting their dads for Father's Day or what they're hoping to receive for Father's Day.
I think that Father's Day is one of those holidays that sometimes doesn't really get the recognition it deserves. Particularly, there's kind of this tendency for men to not be as open about their love for their fathers. And I think that this is a great opportunity, a great time of year to kind of express that, you know? Let our dads know we love them.
Dads are great. So yeah, that's kind of why we do this-- one of the reasons why we do this. And it's kind of cool to see what everyone is planning on getting their dads or what they're hoping on getting from their families. But yeah, is there anything that you guys are hoping to get for Father's Day?
JOHN SNYDER: Indian food.
GREG MIGLIORE: Well, yeah, that sounds pretty good. That sounds pretty good. I like to grill on Father's Day. I think that's always fun. My son is pretty good at helping.
He likes to turn the different meats, which maybe don't try that at home-- holding your four-year-old over a grill. But the tongs are quite long, so that's always good. Yeah, I don't know.
Actually, my Father's Day gift almost to myself that I got myself in November is actually on the gift guide. That's the EGO electric lawnmower. So I think that's a solid gift for all you dads out there if you're looking to upgrade to electric. That's there.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah. Electric tools are where it's at. I've converted pretty much everything to electric-- electric chainsaw. I love that electric chainsaw.
ERIC MEYER: Nice.
JOHN SNYDER: Things like that are great.
ERIC MEYER: What brand do you go with, John, for your electric tools?
JOHN SNYDER: It depends. I sort of mix and match. I have used Cobalt for electric mower and weed whacker, my chainsaw is a Craftsman, and then sometimes I just get whatever's cheapest at Harbor Freight.
GREG MIGLIORE: There you go. There you go.
ERIC MEYER: That's a good call.
GREG MIGLIORE: I have never tried Cobalt. I would like to. My electric stuff is EGO, let's see, RYOBI, Black & Decker, and I think I'm down to three brands-- all purchased or given to me at different times. So, like, that's why it's a little, like, you have three different brands? You know you can share the batteries, right?
It's just that's how they've accumulated. But there's a lot of cool stuff here in the gift guide. Eric, you want to tell us just some of the ideas here? It was a staff submitted thing, so these kind of come from all corners of the "Autoblog," you know, world.
But you know, obviously, the lawnmower was my contribution. But I'm kind of intrigued by this, like, coffee thing that senior producer Chris McGraw threw on there.
ERIC MEYER: Yeah. So this is-- so if you know anything about our senior producer, Chris McGraw, he's a big time outdoorsman. He's always camping, always hiking. He lives in Colorado, so he's always in the mountains-- and big coffee guy as well.
GREG MIGLIORE: As I am too.
ERIC MEYER: Yeah, yeah. So he chose this jet boil flash camping and backpacking stove cooking system. So I don't think this is something that necessarily has to be for coffee. I'm pretty sure you could heat up, like, soups or things like that in this. But it seems like a neat device.
I'm not nearly as much of an outdoorsy kind of person as Chris is, but I know that Chris-- I think Chris has one of these-- this is similar to you, Greg, has one of these and these recommending it because he loves it. But it's one of those things, it can boil water in under two minutes.
GREG MIGLIORE: Wow.
ERIC MEYER: So if you're like-- yeah, so if you wake up and you're really dying, it's just one of those, I need coffee, kinds of days-- especially if you're camping up in the mountains or something, you want to get to it as soon as possible. It seems like a pretty great option.
GREG MIGLIORE: I like it.
JOHN SNYDER: It does. The one that I have been meaning to get, and this was Armor's pick for the list, is a portable jump starter for your car. I've been meaning to get one forever. And now that I have a super old Beetle that doesn't seem to maintain a charge very well, I think I might have to get one of these. It's crazy how small they are.
ERIC MEYER: Yeah.
JOHN SNYDER: They're a little bit bigger than your phone and it'll jump start your car. And you can also use it as a sort of a power brick for charging devices or whatever else. And the one that Armor picked is also a flashlight.
So if you're broken down at night, you bust this thing out, you can see what you're doing, and you can jump start your car, and get back on the road.
ERIC MEYER: Yeah. It is really crazy if you're like me-- so I've had a portable jump starter for it feels like probably eight years or so. But it's one of the huge ones. I mean, it's like a little miniature briefcase. It's like nowadays, yeah, just like you said, they're so compact.
They do so much more. You know, flashlight can charge your phone. It's way more beneficial. I mean, obviously, it's pretty important. It's got to start your car.
But in 2022, if your phone's dead, that could be potentially as challenging as if your car battery's dead. So yeah, definitely that's a great gift idea, I think, for anyone. James Riswick, our senior editor on the West Coast, actually chose a lightweight child carrier backpack, which is pretty interesting.
So again, I'm not the dad here, but do either one of you guys ever go hiking? Or you know, obviously, you guys go on walks with your kids-- but have you ever been in a situation where you either have thrown your kid just on your back or in some kind of--
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah. We definitely use different carriers-- nothing quite as elaborate as what James found here. This is sort of like the Air Force One of child carriers. But yeah, tremendously useful when you don't want to push a stroller around or you just want to go for a nice little hike in the woods.
Did a lot of winter hikes with Wally just on my chest or on my back. And it was really nice. It was fun-- just watching him sort of look up at the treetops and explore the world. Yeah, it's a fun thing.
GREG MIGLIORE: Pretty cool. Yeah. We had one somewhat like this, but it was more of like a baby carrier type of thing. And I remember vividly walking around the beaches around Destin, Florida kind of the panhandle, a couple of years back on, like, a winter kind of getaway. We drove somewhere warm in our long-term Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid and had a great family road trip.
So that was pretty cool. Sometimes, you know, your kids don't want to walk and you need to carry them.
ERIC MEYER: Yeah. I definitely get it. And especially if there's any kind of, like, verticality on the walk, I imagine a stroller is not going to be the best option there.
JOHN SNYDER: For sure.
ERIC MEYER: So yeah, something like that seems like a great idea. Another idea our production manager Eddie Sabatini-- he's actually gifting his dad a 12-month Amazon Prime membership, I think mostly for-- I mean, everybody knows about Amazon Prime. I think most people still probably associate it with faster deliveries, which is true. But I think in Eddie's case, it's mostly for the subscription to Prime Video which has sneakily become a really strong streaming service.
I mean, there's a lot-- obviously, for our audience, the "Grand Tour" is a Prime original. I don't know if either one of you guys have ever heard of or have watched the show "The Boys." That just came back. It's like a really brutal superhero show, but it's really good. If you're--
JOHN SNYDER: I read the comic books too.
ERIC MEYER: Yes. Yes. Very good. There's an incredible sci-fi show called "The Expanse" on Prime Video. It's just-- it's become really good. And the nice thing about it is it's all the benefits of a really good streaming service, plus all the other benefits of just normal Amazon Prime. So it's kind of like a two for one-- two for one kind of gift, or three for one or four for one kind of gift depending on how many Prime services you use. But yeah, I think the main one probably is the Prime Video.
JOHN SNYDER: Yeah, that's the biggest reason to have it, in my opinion. And there's lots of great children's programming too-- lots of PBS stuff on there.
ERIC MEYER: Oh, nice.
GREG MIGLIORE: That's true. Yeah. Yeah, actually, this is somewhat, like, as a side note. But everybody says Netflix, like, the sky is falling for Netflix-- they're losing more subscriptions. I've been watching way more Netflix lately. Like, every month in the last few months, I found like a show that I've really gotten into. I call it, like, the after hours film club.
Like, everybody else goes to bed somewhat early because we get up pretty early-- speaking of having kids and Father's Day. Like, 7:30 is a major sleep-in around here, you know? So people go to bed early. But in after hours film club with, like, me and the dog, I've been watching a lot of Netflix stuff. So I'll have to see what's on Prime.
I haven't looked over there. I will say this-- have either of you guys watched the "Lincoln Lawyer" on Netflix yet?
JOHN SNYDER: No.
GREG MIGLIORE: It's pretty good. It's a solid-- it's like a miniseries. I think they're going to do a Season 2, that 10-episode block. It's a riff on the novels which became a movie with Matthew McConaughey, which now it's kind of like a series. It's pretty good.
He drives a mid-'60s Continental convertible, and I think a Navigator is among the other cars, which is kind of cool. There's no other reference to Lincoln in it. It's just like-- you know, it's-- I mean, it's the underlying method that Lincoln crept into the original one. There was no, like, official deal, but I guess Matthew McConaughey got a deal out of it because he became, like, the Lincoln guy.
But I would highly recommend that.
JOHN SNYDER: OK.
GREG MIGLIORE: And I'll have to see what else is on Prime. I ordered some string for my weed whacker, and it arrived courtesy of Prime in, like, five hours. I was like, I don't need it this fast. Like, I'm not going to cut the grass for another week.
But it helped, because I was able to do some edging, and that's electric. So why don't we close this out with your Oculus headset there, Eric?
ERIC MEYER: Yes. So this is one-- I almost felt a little weird recommending this one, because people have very correct opinions about Facebook slash Meta, who does now own this product, technically. However, I will say, despite your feelings about Meta and Mark Zuckerberg, VR is the coolest thing in the world.
If you haven't experienced it, try to find a way to use, like, a real VR headset. You can do the cardboard headsets for your phones or whatever. It's not the same. You got to find a real VR headset.
And I think the best one-- just the best all around one, the most affordable one, and the one I have is the-- it used to be called the Oculus Quest 2. It's now called the Meta Quest 2. But you can search either one, you'll find it. They haven't done a great job switching the branding over quite yet.
But it's-- I mean, it's truly mind-blowing. I wrote in the guide, it's hard to even describe without experiencing it. It really transports you. And there's a couple different things I like about it. Obviously, there are games you can play in virtual reality, particularly there's a great golf game on there that's really fun.
To me, that just feels very dad-ish. I think most dads are-- this is probably not true, but in my mind, most dads golf.
GREG MIGLIORE: I enjoy golf.
JOHN SNYDER: I think if you don't golf already, you have to start once you have a kid.
ERIC MEYER: That is true. I think that's a rule. I think that's a rule. But outside of the games, especially, you know, one of my parents isn't very mobile. So if one of your parents is the same, I think something like a VR headset can also be really interesting in that just the video aspect of it can really, like, put you in situations that might otherwise be difficult for you to physically be in.
For instance, you can-- it feels like you're sitting in the passenger side of a race car, or you might be joining someone on a climb up a mountain, or you can just kind of explore all these museums all around the world. There are all these different just places all around the world.
And it's just-- it really, really does a great job of tricking your brain into-- I mean, you obviously know you're sitting in your living room. But it really transports you. And so, John, I know that-- I know you have one of these as well. Would you agree with my assessment?
JOHN SNYDER: Oh, 100%. Yeah, you convinced me to get one during the pandemic when everyone was not hanging out with each other. And you were telling me about this. And it just sounded so neat.
And then I got it. And the whole family loves it. But you sort of showed me some of the apps, and games, and stuff. And it was crazy-- we were playing, you and I, we were playing disk golf together from our own living rooms. And it felt like we were in the same room. It's wild.
It was a great way to sort of hang out with someone without having to leave the house. So yeah, for someone who might have a mobility issue or just lives far away from people, it's a great way to connect with other people. There's lots of-- you can play poker. There's all sorts of stuff. And yeah, it's a great party trick when someone comes over who hasn't seen it before.
ERIC MEYER: Yes.
JOHN SNYDER: Put them on the roller-coaster with this, and their mind is just blown. And yeah, this one, I really like that it's sort of all self-contained. You're not wired up to anything. You have this standalone headset and these two hand pieces. And that's it. And for $300, you know, that's cheaper than most video game consoles.
ERIC MEYER: Cheaper than a phone. Cheaper than a lot of-- and the technology just packed into this thing is--
JOHN SNYDER: It's incredible.
ERIC MEYER: It really is incredible. Even, obviously, visually, it's amazing. But something that I don't see talked about almost ever is the audio is incredible too. It's like this crazy 360 open air audio. It's so immersive and so cool. So yeah, I think that's a great gift and just a great piece of tech in general, if you are a technology enthusiast.
GREG MIGLIORE: Sounds good. Sounds good. There's another deals post floating around out there if you're interested. You could find that, just search for Father's Day Deals 2022. You can see things like a hammock, portable grill, which is always fun for tailgating, lots of different things out there-- a different kind of electric lawnmower if you maybe have a smaller lawn, that type of thing.
But check that out as well. Good gift possibilities if you're still searching. But that's it. Eric, thanks for joining us today. It was good to hear about the Father's Day gift guide. We'll have to have you back to talk about some of the other gift guides we do throughout the year. And it's always good to hear what we have out there, the ideas behind them, and that type of thing.
ERIC MEYER: Yeah, definitely. I appreciate you guys having me on. And I will say if anybody wants to check it out on the site, we will have the staff picks guide just right on the home page over the weekend. So if you're listening to this the day it comes out or the day afterward, just head to Autoblog.com, it'll be right there for you.
GREG MIGLIORE: And of course, Eric hosts our stream, which is-- why don't you tell everybody what time that is, when and where, how you can get a hold of that.
ERIC MEYER: So it's currently on hiatus because I did just move. And I am kind of building up the new studio. I've been renovating the entire basement area of the new house. So there hasn't really been a great space to set up.
However, when it comes back, we do that on Tuesdays from 2 o'clock to 4 o'clock Eastern time. We stream racing and driving games. I know the new F1 game is coming out very soon. And actually, to tie it back in, the new F1 game does have a virtual reality mode that you can use with the Oculus Quest 2.
That seems like it's going to be pretty mind-blowing. So I'm pretty excited.
JOHN SNYDER: I will be getting that.
GREG MIGLIORE: That's pretty intense.
ERIC MEYER: For sure. So yeah, keep an eye out for that in the next few weeks.
GREG MIGLIORE: All right, sounds good. Super-sized podcast today. Again, if you have questions, get in the mailbag. You want us to spend your money, we would like to spend your money. That's email@example.com.
If you enjoy the show, five-star rating on Apple podcasts, Spotify. We are on every podcast platform. We're there where you need us. John and Eric, good catching up with you. Everybody else, be safe out there. You guys can be safe out there as well. And we'll see you next week.