2022 Toyota Tundra, Rivian R1T, Blackwing, and Hyundai Kona N Line | Autoblog Podcast #701

In this episode of the Autoblog Podcast, Editor-in-Chief Greg Migliore is joined by Consumer Editor Jeremy Korzeniewski for a robust week of reviews and news discussion. They start with what they've been driving, and it's a pretty impressive list. The Toyota Tundra and Rivian R1T hold down the truck end of things, with Hyundai Kona N Line and Cadillac CT5-V Blackwing making an appearance on the enthusiast side. The updated Polaris Slingshot rounds things out. Next, they pivot to news, where Maverick guarantees a little more truck talk. That's followed by GM's new 1,000-horsepower monument to crate motor displacement, Stellantis searching for battery partners, details of the new Honda Civic Si and Tesla's massive third-quarter performance. Then, they spend a listener's money.

Send us your questions for the Mailbag and Spend My Money at: Podcast@Autoblog.com.

Video Transcript

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GREG MIGLIORE: Welcome back to the "Autoblog Podcast." I'm Greg Migliore. We have an enormous show for you today. I'm super psyched. Quick preview, Tundra, Cadillac CT5 Blackwing, a Polaris Slingshot, Rivian R1T. We're gonna Spend Your Money. We have a mailbag question plus news involving the Ford Maverick fuel economy and 1,000 horsepower crate engine.

If that's not enough to stick around for, I don't know what is. Let's bring in Consumer Editor Jeremy Korzeniewski, who's wearing an upper Peninsula hat.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yep.

GREG MIGLIORE: Hats off to you, man.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. Hats on for me. Pick this up in my last trip up to the Upper Peninsula in Marquette, Michigan. And yep, don't live anywhere near that, but I'm repping anyway.

GREG MIGLIORE: You know what? I mean, you're in Ohio. So it's not that far from the UP, if you will. But I mean, it's a hike. You ever get the whitefish that you can get at those kind of like roadside stands, eat them with crackers?

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: I basically live on whitefish when I'm in the Upper Peninsula.

GREG MIGLIORE: Pretty good.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: The smoked whitefish like paté is absolutely--

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Totally on board with the whitefish.

GREG MIGLIORE: Some good beers up there, too.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Great beers, yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: Let me tell you. There's a Sheboygan-- I think it's a blood orange I tried, which is quite good. I highly recommend it. And I think we have so much to talk about. We should probably move on to the news. Let's talk about the Tundra. We both have driven that recently. I drove it just a couple of days ago, and you went to the launch in Texas. So just real quick initial impressions.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Well, I mean, it's the best Tundra Toyota has ever made. But it is not the best full-size truck I've ever driven. That kind of sums it up. I think they did a great thing going with a coil spring, rear suspension. I think that's probably the number one improvement in my opinion-- well, the number one hard metal improvement.

I would say that the suspension update, in the way that the truck drives and rides, is, in my opinion, a greater benefit than the Twin Turbo powertrain. There was nothing wrong with Toyota's old 5.7-liter V8 except that it got terrible gas mileage. The Twin turbo V6 gets better gas mileage. But in my personal opinion, it feels less like a truck engine and more like a boosted car engine.

And that kind of sums up my opinions on the truck. I think it looks good outside. It feels good inside. It drives more like a car than pretty much any other truck with the possible exception of the Ram 1500, the only other one with rear coils incidentally. Would I recommend it? I would recommend it to people who have a strong affinity for Toyota, people who absolutely do not want to buy anything from a domestic automaker.

Well now, they've got a competitive truck from Toyota to choose. And if they don't really use their truck for trucking things and aren't worried about how much they can haul or tow with it, then I think it's a really nice option. I do not think that it is superior to Ford or Ram offerings for 2021. The 2022 GM trucks get a new interior that brings them back up to snuff.

And my gut reaction is all three of the domestic trucks are probably going to outwork the Tundra as it sits. But still, it's a good truck. I'm really impressed by Toyota's attention to detail with it. And I think they kind of targeted the mass market-- or not the mass market. That's not the right way to say it. They targeted like the heart of the truck market is a better way.

They're not like going for every powertrain option, like the Detroit trucks do. They're not going for max towing ratings. They're not going for we can pull more, we can haul more. They're not really going for class-leading figures. They're just making, I think, the best truck available to Toyota truck buyers.

GREG MIGLIORE: I almost hesitate to respond because my opinion is basically yours. I drove it briefly. Oh, not briefly, I got a good hour in it. So that's some time. I took it on the highway, took it through some kind of winding roads. I like the design. To your point, the motor is plenty capable.

It doesn't tend to really win on any individual metric, which I know when you got up close with some of the Toyota product guys, they explain that that's not exactly where they're going. They're just trying to create an overall good truck in basically every area.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Right.

GREG MIGLIORE: I can respect that. I mean, I would say this. You and I are about the same age. And I think you remember when the headlines were like the Tundra comes for Detroit. 20 some years later, that has not proven to be true. This is, I would say, still like a fourth-place truck. And I don't even mean that is not good thing.

It's just the F-150 is better, the Ram is better. The Silverado did slip a little bit. But with this new interior, I think, it will definitely be ahead of the Tundra. And I think it still was to be candid. You throw the Sierra in there, too, just because it's the same thing. And it--

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Right.

GREG MIGLIORE: Sheet metal is slightly different but yeah. And again, that's not like, I would say, too much of a hit towards the Tundra. But I mean, you see this with like sedans and even with compact cars back when those were really a thing. Detroit can never pick off Honda and Toyota because the cars didn't measurably eclipse the establishment.

And the Tundra doesn't do that. And not only doesn't it not measurably eclipse, it's actually behind in most metrics. So if you like the Tundra-- which I happen to like it. And the other thing, too, I think is if you're a consumer of trucks or just vehicles, in general. Not everybody is perhaps like we are, where we look at the numbers.

We look at what we know to be good and make a decision. Some people, I think, many people do buy their vehicle based like how we might buy our phones, which is this isn't the strongest pixel or the best iPhone, but I like how it looks. It has this cool thing. I had one before. And that's how you make a purchase decision. And I feel like it's an upgrade over the existing Tundra, and it's a very, very good all-around truck.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. I would say the one potential snafu is that it's really complicated now. I think that Toyota enjoyed a certain amount of success for truck customers who really just wanted a simple, basic truck. They don't have a simple, basic truck anymore. At the very least, it's a Twin Turbo V6 with a 10 speed automatic transmission.

But the one thing that really separated the old Tundra from everything else was its dead simple nature. That truck had been in production since what? 2014? Well, not even 2014. That was when it was refreshed. It was like '07 or something. Something crazy like how long that truck has been in production in same basic form.

And by the time 2021 rolls around, it is very much a tried and true and proven platform. You know exactly what you're getting when you buy it. They lost that with this new version of it. The vast majority of customers aren't going to care about that. They're going to be drawn in by the really nice solid interior, the efficient powertrain.

And the dead simple nature of it isn't really what they're looking for. But I do think that that is a thing. And it's gone for good. Like there's never going to be another car that comes out and it's sold in the United States that you're going to look at and say, well, it's just like that's the safe option. That's the tried and true one.

Like buy this one if you're wary of new technology or you just want something that's simple and expected to be super reliable. And yeah, I'll also say I'm shocked-- and this kind of conclude my thoughts on the Tundra. I'm shocked that they took all of the time to completely develop a new platform. It's a new chassis with a lot of parts commonality with the Land Cruiser, that we no longer get in the United States.

And the Tacoma is going to be based on a similar platform, too, the next Tacoma when it's updated. They went to all this trouble, brand new platform, brand new powertrain, brand new engine, brand new transmission, rear ends, brand new transfer cases, all brand new. 100% completely redesigned and yet, not a single class leading figure, with the exception of torque from the turbocharged hybrid i-FORCE MAX.

It's 587-pound-feet, which is 17-pound-feet more than Ford's EcoBoost hybrid. But they're not doing anything extra with that torque. It doesn't actually allow them to pull more and it's not more efficient either than the Ford is. So yeah, I mean, it's just shocking to me that like not a single thing is like the headline.

There isn't a single headline other than, yeah, it's a good truck. It's just surprising in this day and age, especially in full-size trucks that they didn't really come out swinging and say, like we're planting our flag here, whether it's payload or towing or efficiency or something. I mean, there there's no hybrid power generating backup. There's no special tailgate.

And some of that stuff, you might say is gimmicky, and you don't want it. But it's not like the Detroit manufacturers are charging you extra for it. Detroit is going to cost roughly the same as all of its competitors. So it was just surprising to walk in and walk out feeling like, well, that was kind of underwhelming in today's day and age.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. I would agree with you. Like I was driving it, and then I came back to kind of the thought of like, well, I think this is what it is. And that's kind of where it is. It's a good truck.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: It is a very good truck. Like if it sounds like we're being we're damning with faint praise or being real down on it, the thing is we're not. It's actually very good. And I would tell people, yeah, you should take the Tundra for a test drive and see if it's the right one for you. But I just don't think they're going to have a lot of conquests.

I think people are gonna drive it. And maybe some of them will say like, OK, this is the Goldilocks. This is perfect. But it's not gonna be a ton of people. And they're not going to make inroads. They're not gonna dramatically improve their share of the segments with this Tundra.

GREG MIGLIORE: OK. So let's transition to the Polaris Slingshot. This is definitely kind of a curveball for this podcast take us through it, Jeremy.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. So a year ago, I took the new Polaris Slingshot on a two-week loan. And the big deal was that they introduced an automatic transmission for the first time. Along with that, there was a new engine. It's a four-cylinder engine of Polaris's own design, instead of a rehash General Motors unit like it used to be.

But the automatic transmission was the big deal. And tons of people are buying Slingshots now with the automatic, which I think is great because it's getting people into a fun vehicle, the power sports industry that otherwise wouldn't have been able to do so. But I didn't think that the automatic was particularly fun.

And I thought the Slingshot would probably be a lot more thrilling to drive with the stick. So I contacted Polaris. And they were kind enough to send me another one this year right at the tail end of summer, beginning of fall, with a manual transmission. First things first, this is very car-like in operation. There's a steering wheel.

There's a traditional stick shift that sits up between the seats that you operate with your right hand just like you would on any other American vehicle, left-hand drive vehicle. There's a traditional clutch pedal. So it's not like the experience of riding a motorcycle at all. It's very much like driving a car with a stick. Engines up front, single rear wheel drive in the back.

So it's like a weird mash up between a sporty motorcycle and, say, something like a Miata. And my suspicions were 100% confirmed that the manual transmission with a proper clutch and a short-throw shifter really is-- that's the ticket to Slingshot ownership, in my opinion. There's very few vehicles, even enthusiast vehicles these days, that are still being sold with sticks with manual transmissions, proper clutch pedal.

I'm so happy that the Slingshot's one of them. And I would argue that if you are looking at one, it would be worth it to learn how to drive a stick instead of choosing the automatic. If you're just absolutely simply not interested in driving a stick, have no interest in it at all but want to enjoy that wind in your hair motoring, then great. The automatic is fine for you.

But I mean, really, try the stick. It transforms the Slingshot from like a fun vehicle into a thrilling vehicle.

GREG MIGLIORE: Cool. Yeah. I have never driven one. It's on their bucket list for sure. I know you have a lot of expertise in the motorcycle segment. So I feel like having that kind of background would allow you to be able to properly kind of mentally prepare for this experience, which I imagine is quite adrenaline-inducing, to use a bit of a cliche. But good fall driving a Slingshot.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. It's a fun little thing. And I followed that loan up with an Indian FTR 1200 that I've got in the driveway right now. And having those back to back like solidifies the idea that a Slingshot is not a motorcycle. It's like a perfect 50-50 hybrid between a sports car and a motorcycle. But I'll say I'm having a heck of a good time.

GREG MIGLIORE: All right. Sounds good. Let's shift gears over to the Rivian which is--

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Speaking of manual transmissions, let's shift gears, right?

GREG MIGLIORE: There you go. There you go.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: That's a great way to segue.

GREG MIGLIORE: There you go. Although with the Rivian, it is more of just kind of a single EV gear set up, if you will. I relatively brief test drive with this. I took it basically in and around Ann Arbor. I had some expressway time. I drove through some of the small roads, if you will, of like Chelsea and Dexter, kind of out in the country.

I was very impressed with it. It's a very intriguing product. To me, right now, like the super truck wars are really getting to be-- like they're getting a lot of choices. I drove the Hummer about a month ago, and I was able to follow it up again now with the Rivian R1T. The one I tested cost about 73,000. To me, this is kind of like what the Cybertruck should look like as far as what Tesla is doing.

I mean, I get that with Tesla, you want to have that kind of Blade Runner look maybe, if that's what you're going for. But it's a cool truck. I was talking to one of their product people. And he was saying, we looked at all the traditional things you'd think about like, Jeep and Ford and all of that, as far as like a rough off-road truck type of thing.

But he's like we also looked at Bentley, Lamborghini, and Porsche. And you can kind of see that just walking around this thing. So it got a lot of attention. And it was fun, not too many Rivians driving through the countryside of Michigan. Yeah, I mean, 0 to 60 in as quick as 3 seconds, that seems to be the party line for like all electric Uber trucks.

That's what they say the Hummer is going to be. Sure, I wouldn't disagree that it was 3 seconds. It's very quick. It's pretty well sorted. There's like several different driving modes. I was in one that I believe is called All Purpose. So it's just generally like normal or comfortable setting, if you will. There's a fair amount of ride height, too.

Like it can really travel from being up to be like if you're doing some off roading, serious off roading, to get down. And it's almost like a sport truck which is kind of neat, I think. It was very compelling product. It's definitely been one of the vehicles I've been very excited to try this year. The range is up to 314 miles with 21-inch wheels.

Later-- and at this point, reading from the press site here from the website actually-- in January, there's going to be one with 400 miles of range. And they're also going to talk about a 250-mile range as well. So they're trying to make a truck depending on how much you want to pay, how much you might need it for. They're trying to build different trucks for you, which I think is cool.

Yeah. It's really something, just to see all these different types of electric vehicles and the shapes and the approaches that you're seeing, companies take from the existing companies, as well as the startups. And if you want something special that nobody else has, if you show up in a Rivian R1T or they're going to make an SUV, that's pretty cool. You're going to be the life of the party.

Now, it can't crab walk like the Hummer can. But it does have this like sort of random-- it's like the behind the rear doors, it opens up, there's a pass through area. For storage, you can actually sit on the dropdown things. It's just an extra storage area. So there are a number of party tricks to the Rivian as well. And I'm excited as far as just the latest entry in the EV truck segment.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. It's starting to become a competitive segment. You also drove the GMC Hummer electric truck not too long ago. Now, the Rivian and the Hummer don't really compete with one another despite the fact that they're both electric trucks. The Hummer is much larger and more expensive than the Rivian, correct?

GREG MIGLIORE: Well, it's 9,000 pounds for starters. And yeah, the Hummer is basically like as wide as a Raptor. And it's a relatively long vehicle as well, whereas the R1T is basically a mid-sized truck. That's what they're pitching it at. They want that type of buyer who needs to do truck things but also maybe is a little bit more of a-- needs a lifestyle approach to the vehicle as well.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. So a year ago, there were no electric pickup trucks in the market. This year, we've got the Rivian hitting. We'll see what happens with Lordstown. But they're still saying that they're expecting production trucks soon. That's actually the only one that I've driven. And then there's the-- Ford Lightning obviously is right around the corner. That's going to be coming out.

Tesla is now saying the Cybertruck is going to be out by the end of 2022. Don't hold your breath for that, but we'll see. And then GM, their Hummer is going to be out. But that's kind of a specialty vehicle. But they're following it up with the Silverado electric vehicle. So in very short time, we'll have gone from no electric pickup trucks to electric pickup trucks from nearly every corner. So yeah, super interesting time to be deep in the automotive industry, right?

GREG MIGLIORE: You, too, you drove the Lordstown Motors. It's the endurance, right? I remember we've talked about this before. But since we both kind of driven these like startup, if you will. Rivian's not really a startup. They've been around for 10 years. They just were in stealth mode sort of. But I mean, my take is it felt pretty well screwed together.

The interior was pretty nice. It's almost like a Volvo vibe in there. It feels like they ever thought some things like as far as like different just basic things. But it felt pretty screwed together, if you will, well-screwed together. Some of the suspension I thought was a little bouncy.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Was it?

GREG MIGLIORE: It's a truck, though, so there it goes. I mean, how did you feel about the Lordstown adventure, though?

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: To be fair, I was mostly driven in it. I didn't do a whole lot of behind-the-wheel piloting of it. I can say that like the chassis, the motors, the battery, that kind of stuff felt like pretty well sorted. Everything else felt on the chintzy end. The body work was that production had these little itty bitty tail lights on it that were kind of stand-ins, because they didn't have the actual truck finished quite yet.

It wasn't running 100% full power. Final production software and the interior basically felt like Fisher-Price quality. So totally different ball game. I will be absolutely shocked if Lordstown actually sells production-intent vehicles before the end of 2021 closes like they've over and over said. Yeah, I don't think that's going to happen. I think now, that they've got to deal with what is it? Foxconn? The big electronics manufacturer.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Foxconn is now going to come and use production space at Lordstown's massive factory. And as long as Lordstown is holding on to that big old factory that used to build the Chevy Cruze, I think they've got a lot to offer as a contract manufacturer. So yeah, I mean, I don't necessarily think the company is folding or going under. But yeah, I don't think they're playing in the same league right now as a company like Rivian is.

GREG MIGLIORE: I would say, just not to put too fine a point on this, but this felt very competitive. Like I think get in there and think, oh, the mirror is going to fall off. They really seem to have it together. And to kind of bring it all together like Tesla needs to get the Cybertruck out because they did that big reveal. They shattered the window or whatever. And I mean, that was what? Two years ago now? I mean, we're at a point now--

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: 2019.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. I mean, Ford and Chevy, they know how to make trucks, are going to be there. And you're going to have several other upstarts that are going to be there, too. So I do think it's critical for Tesla to get their product out there. And certainly, they have a captive audience. It's going to want to go with Tesla, no questions asked.

But I mean, you still got to show up, and you've got a show out. You really need to be there. And right now, I think, they're maybe taking their time a little bit. And I mean, the Ford F-150 Lightning, you're not going to have to worry if that thing screwed together well.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Right.

GREG MIGLIORE: So Piece of thought?

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Tesla's really, really good at rolling out concept vehicles and really, really bad about getting them into production in a timely, efficient manner. And the Cybertruck is just the latest example of that. It's been pushed back. It's been delayed. If you go to Tesla's website right now, you can still put an order in for one.

But all the pricing information, all of the range estimates, all that stuff is gone. It's been stripped from their website, so we'll see. Videos on the internet, one we just published the day before this is being recorded shows that Tesla is still hard at work on it. And it's advancing through the various stages of development. But yeah, it's going to eventually come to market.

I'm confident of that. It's going to be behind, and it's going to be the most unorthodox entry out of all of them there. So very much a wait and see what happens kind of approach with the Cybertruck.

GREG MIGLIORE: So right after the Rivian, I drove that-- right before the Rivian, I should say. I drove the Rivian first thing in the morning. Great way to wake up, if you will, very early. The night before, I drove the Cadillac CT5 Blackwing. So it was sort of like it was almost like serendipitous. You drive this high-powered Cadillac V8, rear wheel drive muscle sedan. It's the day is ending.

And then you start the day with an electric truck from this new company that didn't exist like more than 10 years ago. So just an interesting moment in time. I was also actually thinking driving them in October, where the days get almost equal in shape, and you have long shadows. October is a transitional month, and I feel like we're at a transitional time in the car industry.

That being said, there are mostly internal combustion engines out there. Most of them aren't supercharged 6.2 liter V8 with over 660 horsepower, but that's OK. And man, the CT5 Blackwing is really quite something. I was driving it around, thinking to myself, wow, it's been a while since a car this big sending this much power to the rear wheels, where you're almost like fishtailing with no effort whatsoever.

It's just like it reminded me of when like I actually-- a decade ago, when you get behind the wheel of a Charger. And it was the first time. There weren't that many rear wheel drive cars out there at the time. It was that same vibe. And it's the highest, I think, evolution of the V8, the V8 muscle sedan. I think it's a brilliant Cadillac. I think it's a very niche product.

I think, a little bit of perspective here. No matter how many electric cars come out in the next couple of years, we're still going to be driving internal combustion engines mostly for the next decade. Some people aren't going to be able to afford them. For some people, it's not going to be there. Some people just aren't going to want them. Now, does that mean you'd be driving a V8 Cadillac? Probably not either.

But my point being is there is a place for a car like this on the market and probably for quite some time. This is an instant collector though, I think.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. It's the end of an era. And I think, throughout the remainder of this podcast, I think it's going to be a recurring theme that as one era ends, a new era begins. And I think I touched on in an opinion piece a month ago, maybe a month and a half ago, I don't know, where now is the time to go out and buy that gas-powered car that you've always dreamed of because you're not going to have the option for a whole lot longer.

Yes, there's still going to be a lot of gasoline-powered vehicles but not ones like a CT5 Blackwing. Car companies are not going to invest millions, hundreds of millions of dollars in internal combustion technologies at the same time that they are spending hundreds of millions of dollars investing in battery technologies and motor technologies.

So the fact that you drove them back to back like that is indicative of the time that we're living in right now. The very best time to buy a gas-powered car is right now. And the very best time to buy an electric vehicle is probably a couple of years from now. So we're definitely deep into that transition as like the legacy of internal combustion is coming to an end.

And a new era of electrons is going to take its place. And the elephant in the room is going to be how much it costs to make this transition and how many people are actually ready to jump on that bandwagon with charging and range limits. The whole ownership experience is quite a bit different.

So yeah, it's a super interesting time, as I've said a couple of times already today. And I think it's especially interesting that you were able to have that experience of seeing like the apogee of internal combustion in a CT5 Blackwing and follow it up with this super exciting brand new automaker with a brand new product.

GREG MIGLIORE: I was able to do 0 to 60 in about three seconds with both cars. I didn't really do a 0 to 60 test in the Blackwing. But I did get on the throttle pretty quick. It's listed as 3.4 with 0 to 60 in the CT5 Blackwing. And it's just three seconds about flat, if you will, in the R1T. Both are amazing in their own ways. Let me put it that way.

My one thought when I was driving the Cadillac, though, was like when the V8 really roars and the cylinders are like limbering up and the exhaust is just growling at you-- I'm very interested in buying an electric car myself for personal use. But as I'm like literally getting on that throttle, I'm thinking to myself, do we really want to give this up?

Like wait a minute, this is pretty good here. A V8 muscle sedan, it's not a bad thing. I mean, it's definitely-- I think what we're going to see is it's going to become like the horses of like-- it's such a cliche. But that's what we're going to see-- is you'll spend $100,000 for your Cadillac that you'll put in the barn. And you'll drive it in the summer.

And then you'll be driving in your electric whatever the rest of the time.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Totally.

GREG MIGLIORE: And that's how it's going to be.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yep, agreed.

GREG MIGLIORE: Real quick. I drove the Hyundai Kona last week. I put a ton of miles on this thing. I think it's a pretty good car for the segment it reminded me--

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Which version of the Kona was it that you drove?

GREG MIGLIORE: This is the Kona N-Line.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Gotcha.

GREG MIGLIORE: So 195 horsepower, seven-speed dual clutch, 35 miles per gallon, rode on 18-inch wheels, 10.25 digital cluster. This is not to be confused with the full-on Kona N which is 276 horsepower. Looks pretty good. Mine was in this very kind of like stark sort of crisp shade of white. What I would say is this.

The Kona reminds me that if you're in the market for a crossover, if you will, of this size, you could get a pretty good one.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: I put stuff in it. It's relatively fun to drive, you know. It's competitive. We liked it a few years ago when we did our small crossover comparison test. It didn't win, but it fared quite well. And it's a good entry for Hyundai.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. I voted it as my leading entry in that subcompact crossover comparison because I was involved in that, too. And the Kona got some updates this year, slightly refresh in the styling, which I think is actually improved over what was originally there. And it is a good, solid vehicle. My one big knock on it is that the cargo capacity is lacking with that.

Unless you put the rear seat down, there's just not much space in the back, even compared to vehicles that it competes with-- that I don't even like as much like-- the Honda HR-V and Kia Soul, which actually is what won our comparison test. They just got so much more cargo space. And I think that would be the one thing about Kona ownership that would be irritating is how often you've got to put that back seat down to have enough space.

GREG MIGLIORE: It's enough for sort of like a day trip, if you will. I was able to get a carry-on piece of luggage in there when we were just doing a bunch of different things. So we put some like luggage back there rather than packing a bunch of backpacks. I did get a wagon in there. So that actually fit fairly well. So yeah, I was able to tether some things in there.

It didn't take that much skill, but I'll say this. Even for like a weekend away, it'd be tight. It'd be a little bit of work.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Right.

GREG MIGLIORE: So let's throw things back to the Tundra. You did a "Used Vehicle Spotlight." Real quickly, Tundra is if you want to get a used one, they're out there. Like all used vehicles, they're not cheap. Toyotas tend to hold their value quite well. Walk us through your piece though, Jeremy.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. So this kind of goes back to what I was talking about earlier about the simple nature of older pickup trucks. And the one that I highlighted in this piece was the original Tundra. So we talked about the second gen tundra being replaced by the third gen earlier in this podcast. The second gen is the one that everyone's used to seeing around that was available with the big 5.7-liter V8.

The one that I focused on was the first gen. And that's the one with the 4.7-liter V8, automatic transmissions, and a slightly smaller size than every other full-sized pickup truck. Not so small that you'd call it a mid-size, definitely bigger than something like a Tacoma. But a lot of people refer to as like a 7/8 size truck.

Parked next to an F-150, that first gen Tundra was a little bit smaller in pretty much every dimension that mattered. They are excellent trucks, absolute workhorses. Those generations of Toyotas-- the one complaint you can make is that it still had a timing belt instead of a timing chain, which means that every 90,000 miles or so or a little less than a decade, you've got to spend 1,000, 1,200, 1,500, depending on your mechanic, to replace the timing belt.

So that's a demerit. But past that, like regular routine maintenance. The things are just bulletproof. They tend not to die. And their resale value is better than some other trucks because of that. But that's not necessarily a bad thing because then you're sitting on the resale value king when it comes time for you to replace it then. So the initial purchase price, maybe it's $1,000 or more.

But if you ever do sell it, you're going to recoup that. And then also, the reason that it's resale value is better is because it's just so darn reliable. You're less likely to have any sort of problems with it over your ownership period. So if you're the kind of person that maybe you're about to ride this electric car wave. And you've always thought, it would be nice idea.

It'd be nice to have a pickup truck as my second vehicle parked in the garage for those times when I do need to haul something, if I need to take a trip longer than 200-300 miles, whatever the range of your electric car is, a pretty good, strong option for ownership consideration would be that first gen Tundra. That's the direction I was going when I wrote up that "Used Car Spotlight."

GREG MIGLIORE: Oh, sounds good. We'll check that out. That's obviously on our site. You can find it pretty easily. Just search for the Tundra Used Car Spotlight. Let's transition to some news. Ford Maverick, EPA ratings out for the hybrid. You're talking up to 42 miles per gallon, which is quite good for a pickup truck of any sort. This is a relatively small one.

I actually drove this a couple of days ago. I was pretty impressed with it. It's interesting little truck. The interior is pretty good. Lots of different things you can do. My personal take is they kind of went a little too far with the DIY thing with the bed. But either way-- but I mean, they did that, if you will, to try to keep it around 20 grand for starting prices.

I don't know how many people are going to use a 2 by 4 to build their own bike rack. I digress. Very solid fuel economy numbers. And I think really, for the hybrid, that's what's going to be the Mavericks calling card.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. I think not just its calling card but also I think, it's potentially one of its biggest reasons for consideration by shoppers are it's dollars per utility ratio. The big headline figure's 42 miles per gallon in the city. But 33 on the highway and 37 combined is really darn good. And that's 510 miles of range at 37 miles with 13.8 gallon tank.

The amount of utility you're getting for your between $20,000 and $30,000 truck is I mean, off the charts. It's a efficient daily driver, a solid commuter, and with the truck bed in back and the four-door shape. It's also very useful. It's a useful shape, a useful design. And I mean, I imagine they're going to sell the crap out of these things.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. I think these are going to be-- this and the Hyundai Santa Cruz are two very-- I think, going to be very sought after trucks, especially at the like the bottom part of the truck market. And they're both interesting to look at in their own way.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: So we'll see. Like I said, when we look at our next comparison, we were doing compact crossovers. I think we've got some cooler things to work with now in the last couple of years. The market's changed, Maverick versus Santa Cruz, Bronco versus Wrangler versus 4Runner versus Defender like--

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah, totally.

GREG MIGLIORE: We got some things to talk about, I think.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Absolutely.

GREG MIGLIORE: So what about this 1,000 horsepower crate engine? This is from Chevy. Heck, yeah.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. I mean, we were talking earlier like we're foreshadowing a little bit like this transitionary period from the gasoline age to the electric age. Well, here's a relic. Here's something that-- I'd be shocked if we ever see something like 1,000 horsepower crate engine from a mainstream automaker ever again. And we're highlighting this one. It's GM.

The headline figure's 1,000 horsepower, which is absolutely crazy town ridiculous. And people are going to be able to buy these things from their local GM dealership, pick it up in old crate, that's why they call it a crate engine, and drop it into the project of their choice. I've got an old Suburban sitting in my driveway right now that if my 454 big block ever takes a dump, I can drop 1,000 horse crate engine into it.

Mopar has something similar where they're crazy hemi thing. It's up there. It's what? 900 or 1,000 horsepower. Also, they had that really cool-- I think it was a 69 Charger that they debuted it in for SEMA. And no surprise, SEMA was right around the corner. So what's GM going to drop this engine into, show it off to the SEMA crowd.

But yeah, it's crazy that we just went off of a segment talking about a 42-mile per gallon highway rating on Ford's latest pickup truck, and we're moving directly into a absolutely ridiculous GM V8 engine that makes 1,000 horsepower that literally anyone with some money in their pocket or bank account can go by. The golden age of performance is what we're living in right now.

GREG MIGLIORE: 10.3 liters, that's 632 cubic feet. Good grief, man. Like if you put this in your Suburban, I mean, I want to meet you for a coffee or a beer just look at how this monster of an engine would be in there. That being said, we've mentioned on the podcast, I've got a '73 Chevelle out in a barn somewhere. Hey, there's a humble 350 V8 in there. Maybe this is my answer, right?

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. And to kind of complete the circle, GM is also doing a crate electric motors that will bolt up to your old vehicle's transmission or clutch plate or whatever, flex play, whatever it is that you're building in your garage. So yeah, interesting time for tinkerers, right?

GREG MIGLIORE: I can't wait to see what cars-- if they show these in cars at SEMA, which is like coming up the first week in November. Usually they do something very interesting. Like they'll put the electric motor in something like they did put it in a '73 Chevelle, Laguna one year, they've done it in a bunch of other things.

Then sometimes, they take like the crate motor and drop it in something crazy. Same with Mopar. Not going to make it there this year. But I like the show. I really do. It's a show where you see the craziest stuff from the aftermarket industry. The OEMs bring out some really interesting things. And at the end of the day, Mopar or Jeep usually serve beer after the press conference.

So I mean, I don't really know what else you want from an auto show. The Tudor world is different, but you can see some wild stuff out there.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Absolutely. Yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: So how about-- let's just keep going back and forth here. Go back to the Stellantis battery deal. You were running the show earlier this week, earlier one morning. When this came across the wire, what's going on there?

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. So regular listeners to the podcast, so remember a few months back, we talked about Stellantis, which, if that doesn't sound familiar, that is the name of the holding company that owns the guts of Fiat Chrysler-- so Dodge, Jeep, Ram, Chrysler, Fiat, Alfa Romeo, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

So they announced a plan several months back because everyone is getting on this bandwagon of having EV days where they say exactly what they're going to do over the next, say, five years. And they do it because the stock market likes them to do it. And people who are investing need to be reminded that, hey, we're not going to fall behind in electric technology.

And that's what Stellantis is trying to do. The big question, they announced things like electric Dodge muscle cars and electric Jeeps, electric Alfa Romeos, Maseratis, everything that you can imagine. But no one knew where any of this stuff was going to come from because to make these kinds of vehicles with any reasonable kind of power and range, they're just absolutely packed to the gills with batteries.

Well, Stellantis has no batteries. They have some deals with the likes of LG for their Pacifica hybrids. But those are relatively small battery packs and sold in relatively small numbers. If they're actually going to make a dent in EV sales, they're going to have to get their hands on just loads and loads of batteries that's going to mean factories.

So back-to-back days, news came down that Stellantis is partnering with major battery manufacturers. The two that have been announced or pre-announced are joint ventures with LG, which is the company that provides already the batteries for the Pacifica Hybrid, and the other one is Samsung. Everyone knows Samsung as a company, they are a very large battery producer as well.

And both of these are tried and true brands. I maybe say under my breath that LG has had some issues with Hyundai and with Chevy, providing batteries for the Kona hybrid or excuse me, the Konas and the Bolts. They haven't been exactly free from fires, which is exactly what you don't want to hear. But yeah, they are huge battery supplier.

Both of them out of South Korea. And Stellantis is entering joint ventures where they'll build very large battery factories. Some people referring to them as gigafactories that will supply the North American market with batteries for vehicles under the Stellantis brand.

GREG MIGLIORE: All right. So let's go back to internal combustion engines. Honda Civic Si, enthusiast favorite, Turbo 4. We're looking at 200 horsepower. Of course, you get a six-speed manual. It's just kind of completing the latest generation of the Civic lineup. I've always liked the Civic Si. For me, this is more like the car versus Type R or something a little bit crazier.

And those Honda manuals, they are just silky. So this, to me, looks like everything I'm looking for from the new civic Si. My only complaint-- and I'm always talking about design on the podcast-- I feel like the Civic, just in general, this generation isn't quite as good looking as it was before. It's a little bit more toned down.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: So but otherwise--

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: The last couple of Civics have been-- sorry to cut you off. The last couple of Civics have kind of been avant garde. They went to that really sleek, low-slung, look, and it's something like 2008 or 9. Then the most recent one kind of got chunky and blocky but still very different and like I said, a little bit avant garde. Whereas, this one, it's like tell someone to draw a sedan with a Sharpie on the back of a napkin.

And they just drew you a new Civic. Discounting that, it looks like it's going to be everything that a automotive enthusiast would want in a daily driven car. As long as that automotive enthusiast is OK with the manual because as Greg said, six-speed manual standard, not only is it standard, it's the only option. You cannot get an automatic in the Civic Si, which kudos to Honda for that.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. I think that kind of puts a nice bow on it actually. That's a good way to really cater to your enthusiast base. And that's fine with me.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Right.

GREG MIGLIORE: Tesla made money again, second straight quarter. Kind of shocking in some ways that they're putting together this much stability. It's almost becoming blase. What I think is interesting with Tesla is we're kind of like hitting them on like when's the Cybertruck is going to get here. But they are putting up some solid financials consistently. So I mean, that's a good set of stability for Tesla.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: It is. If you drill into the story a little bit, there's still a lot of caveats. Like for instance, they made nearly $280 million selling regulatory credits still. If you don't know what that means, when a car company is not able to meet its government mandated fuel efficiency standards, they can buy their way out of that jam by buying credits from companies who vastly exceeded theirs.

Obviously, since Tesla only makes electric cars with zero emissions, they have huge backlogs of credits. And they're more than happy to sell them to any other company that needs them to stay in the good graces of the federal government. They made nearly $280 million doing that last year-- or excuse me, last quarter, third quarter. That's a lot. They had to take a write down based on their Bitcoin.

They are currently at a 15% operating margin, which is pretty darn good. But they don't expect to actually stay on that 15% operating margin as they continue investing in new battery technologies, as they continue building new plants, and as they continue ramping up production of their popular models like the Model 3 and Model Y, which incidentally are not as profitable as more expensive vehicles like the Model S and Model X.

So on one hand, they've turned a corner. They are consistently profitable now. On the other hand, they're still spending huge amounts of money as they continue ramping up their operations globally. So it's interesting to see that they can have an announcement where they are more profitable than expected, more profitable in a quarter than they've ever been.

And Wall Street actually reacts by the stock going down a little bit, which is what happened late last night. So not completely out of the woods, like they've still got a long slog ahead. But I would say it's impressive what they were able to do with all the headwinds and the amount of money that they have to spend in order to compete with more established car companies.

GREG MIGLIORE: Well. I would say, if that doesn't be their becoming part of the establishment, what does? They outperform Wall Street's expectations if their stock goes down.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Right.

GREG MIGLIORE: I mean, if GM and Ford would say, hey, how's it feel? All right.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. Totally.

GREG MIGLIORE: All right. Since we're talking money, let's spend some money. We'll go to the mailbag. First, we just have kind of a comment. David writes, I should spend some of your money on a sprinter conversion van.

5-seater room for two, motorcycles inside, beds above, solar awning, rear hammock holder, a shower, add the bathroom, towing an enclosed trailer with a VW Syncro with a Vespa 50 CC scooter inside for what I need to downsize. I'm not greedy. So that's just kind of an observation. I don't know. You've had vans. Any thoughts?

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: I like where this David guy is going with this. I want a sprinter conversion van with two motorcycles, a bed, a hammock, shower, and toilet with an enclosed VW Syncro and a 50 CC, bedside, too That sounds like a dream garage to me. I especially like the idea that he wants to spend our money doing it. I'm all about spending other people's money. So David, kudos. And I'm right behind you.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. I mean, I guess in some ways, it's fair. We've spent so many people's money over the years. We should probably start cutting checks. I hope you don't mind if their rubber checks because we don't have any money to buy other people cars. All right. Spend some money, Mark in Palm Springs writes, live in Palm Springs, California and have a condo on the strip in Las Vegas.

Let's see. Both he and his husband are in their mid to late 50s, retiring in the next couple of years. Weekends are often spent in Las Vegas, and we drive regularly through the Mojave Desert about four hours between houses. I love cars and their styling. But I'm not a gearhead. Trying to decide what to do in the future. And we've got a few cars here, so we're to work through this.

The current car stable is a '93 Mercury Capri XR2, turbo five-speed manual, 117,000 miles, used only occasionally around town locally. Just have the car repainted, ceramic porcelain on the paint after repainting, new interior, new convertible top, new stereo bill-- new stereo, excuse me. Car will not be sold, and it's just fun to have around town.

I think that's awesome. Just full stop, we should just include a link to the '93 Mercury Capri XR2 in the show notes because this is a cool car that you might have forgotten about.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. You don't see these everyday.

GREG MIGLIORE: You definitely don't. You definitely don't. But let's move into some of the-- this is the moving pieces part of it. 2010 Acura TL with the super handling all-wheel drive and the five-speed manual, 136 on the clock. This was his husband's car that he recently replaced with-- we'll get to it-- the 2020 Volvo. Husband wants to get rid of the car.

But Mark is hesitating because it's such a nice car, and we've taken care of this. It does show typical wear from mileage and use. I remember this car. I like this a lot back when I was at Auto Week. 136 is a lot on the clock, though, in my mind. Let's just read through a couple of these, though, just to get the full picture. 2014 Focus ST3 with 60,000 miles.

This is a car he drives to work daily. Sometimes it does go to LA and Vegas and back. It's got some dings. They enjoy driving the manual. They redo the paint and the stripes, maybe do some mods to the engine, try to get a little more performance out of it or sell to reduce the number of cars. 2015 Ford F-150 XLT truck with 70,000 miles. That thing's just getting started.

This is largely the commuter truck between Palm Springs and Las Vegas. The dogs can get room in the back seat. That's great. My golden retriever loves to riding trucks. She especially liked the Raptor a while back actually. Truly used as a truck though. So that's looking to maybe replace with a Lightning down the road. But they're a little concerned that it might not get 300 miles consistently on a charge.

And you don't really want to run out of electricity when you're in the middle of the Mojave Desert. Then there is also the Volvo S60 T8 Inscriptions, just like our long term, awesome. All right. Bring this together a little bit here. Thinking about retirement and the future, so you probably want to downsize some of these vehicles or at least the overall fleet looking at convertibles.

Actively looking at a Corvette convertible 3LT. They have an order for it, but they haven't actually test driven anything. So there's a little bit of it sounds like nuanced and maybe nervousness here. This is a wise choice. Wait for the all-electric Corvette. I don't know if you want to wait for that or not. And then other cars on the consideration, Mercedes E-450 convertible, Jaguar F-type, Porsche Boxster, mini convertible, Mustang convertible, also on the punch card, if you will.

Husband does not like Audi, had a bad experience. He does not like BMW. They're everywhere in Southern California. Not a Toyota fan so that eliminates Lexus. Although the LC convertible is very enticing. How does it drive? I haven't driven that in a while. So I'm not really well informed on that. It drove great about three years ago, the last time I drove it. And it looked awesome.

The 124 Abarth is another car they like, but it's discontinued. I kind of like that one. I'm not sure that's the route I would go to be perfectly honest compared to some of the other stuff on here. Style, reliability, color, handling performance, tech, and then not a car that everybody else drives. So Mark, first of all, thanks for sending us this email. It is really well thought out.

Your fleet of cars, frankly, if you didn't do anything, it's awesome. But I'm out of breath. I'm going to toss it over to you, Jeremy. I think I know what I'm going to do with this. But I'll throw it over to you first.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: OK. First of all, congratulations. You guys have a pretty cool stable of vehicles as is. Keep the Capri, obviously. You already said you're going to do that. I think that keeping the Capri kind of scratches the itch for something unique and fun and something that people aren't going to know a lot of.

So keep that one. Keep it in good shape, and keep it in the garage. I would sell the Acura. The TL is a really cool car, especially with the five-speed manual. If you're listening and you are having trouble picturing what this is, do you remember when Acura in the mid-2000s went from their real classy design and switched over to that very pointy front beak-looking one?

This is the TL that he's talking about here. It was available with the 3 and 1/2 liter V6 and a five-speed manual or excuse me-- yeah, five-speed manual transmission and all-wheel drive. It was a really cool car back then. I wouldn't keep it. I don't think you have a reason for it, especially because you have that brand new Volvo. I like the fact that you kept it in good shape.

But that just means you're going to recoup your as much as your investment as possible. When it comes time to sell it, used car prices are up. And try like Cars and Bids or I mean, probably not to bring a trailer. But if it's in good shape like it sounds like it is, try Cars and Bids, and sell it to someone who's going to appreciate it. That's what I would do with that.

I'd keep the Focus ST. That kind of scratches that itch of a daily driver that has the manual transmission, which is another reason why I think you probably don't need the Acura anymore. I don't see a reason to get rid of a 2015 F-150 XLT that you already have in drive. I would hold off on the electric truck for now until you find out exactly what is up with the Lightning and if it will meet your needs.

My gut tells me and all my research tells me is that Ford is underestimating, on purpose, the total capability of its battery packs. I think you're probably going to easily press the 300-mile range with a good Lightning. But I would wait until maybe second, third year after the initial demand dies down a little bit and then place your order on that.

And by that time, you'll probably be ready to replace your 2015 F-150. Keep the Volvo S60 T8. Great car, absolutely great car. You just bought it. It's 2020. Your husband's daily driver. Awesome. So you'll drive your Focus ST mostly. He'll drive the Volvo. As far as what to do in the future, well, you've kept your Capri, so that's cool. You've gotten rid of the Acura.

So I'm thinking if my choice is between a Corvette convertible or the Lexus LC convertible that you said, even though you don't love the Lexus brand that you might actually consider. I go all in on the Lexus LC convertible as my future retirement splurge car to enjoy and hang out and drive. I love the LC. I have not driven the convertible.

I have driven the hardtop. I trust Lexus as a good solid brand with excellent engineering. I think you probably get a long service life out of that car. Unless you're planning on doing track days and hot rodding around in it. If I were of retirement age, I would rather be driving around in a luxurious and still pretty darn high-performing Lexus LC than I would in a Corvette. That's me. and that's where I'm going with it.

GREG MIGLIORE: Cool. So I'm going to make a-- I'm going to be a little more-- make some harsher decisions, I guess, if you will. So I agree with you, sell the Acura. It's great. Unless you have some real personal attachment to it, I think it's time to say goodbye to that. It's not a collectible. Now's a great time to sell a car. Cars and Bids is a place where this thing is like exactly what you see on there.

And I'm also going to say sell the Focus. I like this car. It was fun. There's definitely-- it was good for what it was. But I feel like you've got some other things. Even though it is an ST, there's other things out there that I think maybe you might want to go for. And this just sort of declutters, if you will. Keep the Capri. Definitely keep the truck because again, I think the Lightning probably will, at some point, meet your needs.

But no need to jump into that now. I would keep the F-150. It's only a 15. I mean, that thing's just getting started. You might as well keep that. You've got the Volvo. So now you're down two cars. So you've got some like, I'd say, bandwidth to go try some new things. I would go ahead and get the Corvette. I think that is-- it's a mid-engined Corvette, so easy enough.

I think that's going to really scratch a lot of just like-- it's just going to be everything you want. It's the mid-engined Corvette. I don't think getting that car will give you any regrets, I think. I think that's just a very it is what it is. It's going to be fun. We haven't really pinned down timing on when an electric or Corvette hybrid is going to come out.

I don't know, maybe ask the President. I mean, literally GM isn't saying anything on it. But it seems like every time Biden tours a GM plant, he makes a joke about the electric Corvette which we love. So I don't know about that one. But I mean, the mid-engined Corvette is pretty awesome. And it's a good all-around sports car, it's great value. So I think that's a good move.

Then what else I would consider doing? Again, you don't really need to do this. But if you're going to sell two cars, maybe replace it with two cars. So what I would suggest is looking at the Boxster. Maybe a used Boxster, maybe it's a toy car, I don't know. But I personally think the dynamics of the Cayman and the Boxster are just so good.

They're so dialed in. A little bit more affordable than, say, a 911 obviously. That's something you might want to look like. Now, at this point, you've got like three sports cars. Maybe that's a bit much. My logic is it's a little more like precise and in some ways, cutthroat and ruthless than Jeremy is, because he's only saying sell one car. I'm saying sell two.

But if you're going to sell two, like I said, go get something fun. And I think you get the Corvette. And then I would say, look at the Cayman or the Boxster. And maybe get a used one if you just want to like try it out for a little while, then you can sell it again. I would do Corvette just for the overall. Also hey, you're going to retire. You might as well get like the new mid-engined Corvette.

I think that's just a nice like almost present to yourself. That's cool. Again, I would also look at the Boxster and the Cayman. And if you decide to say, hey, maybe the Corvette isn't really what I want, my one A move would be check out the Boxster. I like the current generation. I like the last generation. I don't think there's a big drop off. If anything, like going back a few years, you might be able to let somebody else take the depreciation hit.

I drove one in Mallorca back in '14. Great car. I mean, if you gave me that car right now, I would be totally fine with it. I don't necessarily need the 21 or 22. So I think those are like the Porsches hold up well. Either in addition to the Corvette, which I'll admit might be a bit much, or in place of the Corvette. That would be the route I would go.

The Jaguar is awesome, but I feel like after a few years, the F-Type of ride's kind of rough. It's a little uncouth. I mean, it's a beautiful car. But I don't know, I'm not sure I'd want to own one for very long. But I do like that. Let me put it that way. 124 Abarth, same thing, only just more like less power. So yeah, that's where I would kind of come down with my prescription here.

JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Yeah. No. I like that. I like your counterpoint. Sell the ST and the Acura TL. I will counter by saying there's probably not going to be a lot of manual transmission vehicles that you're going to be able to replace. That would be impractical for daily driving like the Focus ST is. So consider that. But you do have the truck, which is very practical.

Also, the monkey wrench that I would throw in is with the budget that we're talking about, you can get a really cool vintage classic car that as a retirement purchase isn't a bad idea. If you're picky and choosy in getting the right thing, you're not going to lose any money on it. In fact, you might see that it appreciates in your later years, which never hurt anybody.

So if you're thinking of something flashy and showy like a Corvette or a Boxster, don't forget that there's old Corvettes and old Porsches that are pretty darn cool, too. Not to mention every other brand that-- I mean, how cool would it be to park a Jaguar XKE in your driveway and make crisscross the desert in something cool like that? So just a thought.

GREG MIGLIORE: All right. Lots of advice. Please, write back and let us know what you end up doing. Great email. Thanks for writing, Mark. Thanks for listening, everybody. Send us your Spend My Money, that's podcast@autoblog.com. Everybody, be safe out there. Have a great weekend.

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