Corbran's Corner

BACK-TO-SCHOOL CARS

by Jim Corbran, Automotive Columnist Like it or not, now that August is here it’s time for us to be bombarded with back-to-school articles, sales, and lists. And this is one of them. But it’s one you never would have read about when I was a youngster: cars for your student to drive back to school in. We went back to school in either a school bus or public transportation. Or walked. But nowadays th

CANADA, OUI. ÉTATS UNIS, NON.

by Jim Corbran, Automotive Columnist Driving down the street the other day, I saw a small crossover vehicle which looked to be a Kia, but was not a model which I readily recognized. Luckily I caught up to it at the light, and found that it was a Kia Ronda. A car I had completely forgotten about. This thing was such an improvement over the previous, rather dowdy-looking Soul-based Rondo, that I dec

JAGUAR CONTEST WINNERS SURPRISED BY THEIR CHAUFFEUR

by Jim Corbran, Automotive Columnist Imagine being these two tennis fans, and finding out that John McEnroe was behind the wheel of the Jaguar XE in which you were being whisked to the All England Lawn Tennis Club for the championships at Wimbledon a couple of weeks ago. It was all part of a contest by Jaguar, for the winners to be chauffeur-driven to the event, which in itself would be a pretty n

THE MAZDAS ARE HERE! THE MAZDAS ARE HERE!

by Jim Corbran, Automotive Columnist To those of you who’ve been eagerly awaiting the arrival of the 2016 Mazda MX-5 Miata: it won’t be long now. A ship recently pulled into the Port of San Diego with the first North American shipment of the popular little roadster, and reports are that many of the cars are the Launch Edition models, in red with tan interiors, which are pretty much sold already. B

CHEVY CRUZE 2.0

by Jim Corbran, Automotive Columnist As all small cars look more and more like each other, at least most of them look pretty good. And the new 2016 Chevrolet Cruze will be no exception. Of course, the new Cruze is larger than the outgoing model, but at least it’s also lighter. Years ago that never would have been the case. The 2016 Chevrolet Cruze – a larger, lighter, more efficient and more sophi

I COULD SEE MYSELF IN ONE OF THESE

Bentley EXP 10 Speed 6 by Jim Corbran, Automotive Columnist Although, I’ve gotta say, if Bentley ever brings this thing to market I hope they come up with a better name. You may remember a two-door coupe version of the Ford Escort called the… you guessed it, EXP. And the whole “10 Speed 6” aspect of it makes me think of someone mounting a six-cylinder engine onto a 10-speed bicycle. Anyway, the Be

THEY’RE EVEN BETTER IN PERSON

by Jim Corbran, Automotive Columnist Where to go to see some awesome classic cars (besides here, of course). Try getting off of your lawn chair and heading over to a Cruise Night or weekend car show. They’re everywhere! Here’s a scant list to get you started (figure all outdoor shows to be weather permitting): Manx Over the Falls, the national Manx Club will gather in WNY from June 25-28. The Manx

NOT EVERY CONCEPT CAR IS A GOOD IDEA

NOT EVERY CONCEPT CAR IS A GOOD IDEA by Jim Corbran, Automotive Columnist I first saw mention of this 2015 Jeep Chief concept car last week in the Automotive News Cars & Concepts newsletter, and when I was done reading I searched in vain for an April Fool’s Day announcement, even though I knew it was June. This is hideous! So from there I surfed on over to the FCA (Fiat Chrysler Automobiles) M

THE 2016 CHEVY SPARK: BIG CHANGES COME IN SMALL PACKAGES

The 2016 Chevrolet Spark is a completely redesigned and more sophisticated execution of the brand’s successful global mini-car that offers greater efficiency and refinement, along with new, available safety and connectivity features. by Jim Corbran, Automotive Columnist Chevy’s smallest car is about to grow a bit. Just a bit. The upcoming 2016 Spark will be built on an entirely new architecture wh

WNY ASSUMES THE LOTUS POSITION

by Jim Corbran, Automotive Columnist Tucked away in the back corner of the Mike Barney Nissan lot at Sheridan and Millersport is one of the more interesting car dealerships in the area. Lotus of Western New York opened for business just about a year ago, and besides having one of the more interesting inventories around, the small, inconspicuous showroom is also a mini Lotus museum, with many rare