High performance comes at high cost

courtesy of Lexus
The new Lexus LC500 Coupe comes with a V-8 engine featuring 471 horsepower.

For fun, let’s assume you have $100,000 to buy a car that you’d occasionally like to drive fast around a racetrack in Monterey or Sonoma with your gearhead friends. We recently drove two cars suited for just that: the exotic-looking 2018 Lexus LC500 Coupe and the muscle-car 2018 Mercedes-Benz C63 S sedan.

Audi S5 is a satisfying ride

courtesy of Audi
The new Audi S5 Coupe comes with an appealing exterior.

Audi has been moving up in the world and now can justifiably claim to be on par with, if not superior to, any of the other prestige German brands.

Cooling off a hot problem

A customer with a 2011 BMW X5 recently came in with an overheating problem. Because this car does not come with a temperature gauge, it can be disconcerting when the instrument display tells you that the car is overheating.

The customer said he saw the warning light and also heard the engine auxiliary fan roaring at full speed. This gave me a good idea of what may have happened.

Following the state's rules on rural roads

Following rules
Megan V. Winslow / Town Crier
Motorists passing cyclists are required to give them a wide berth.

My previous columns focused on safety in town, but riding on rural roads or in a group of cyclists creates its own set of concerns.

Los Altos Hills, Portola Valley and Woodside are the gateway to the Santa Cruz Mountains, and cyclists are often more numerous than cars on some of their roads. Of course, the rules of the road are the same as in town, but two sections of the California Vehicle Code come into play more often in rural areas, and both cyclists and motorists should be aware of them.

Getting more for less

courtesy of Mitsubishi
Fully equipped, the new Mitsubishi Outlander sells for approximately $32,000.

Those looking to buy a solid, standard-size sport utility vehicle with seating for seven and a full range of safety features will spend at least $50,000 if they choose a luxury SUV with Japanese or German nameplates.

Consumers who don’t care about the nameplate, however, can purchase a fully equipped 2018 Mitsubishi Outlander with a 4-cylinder engine for just more than $32,000.

2018 Subaru Crosstrek is practical for families

Courtesy of Subaru
The Subaru Crosstrek has all the safety features of higher-priced vehicles.

Some vehicles we test don’t scream their virtues or demand attention – they just do a good job of doing what they were designed to do and quietly flatter the owners’ good judgment.

The Subaru Crosstrek, redesigned for 2018, is such a vehicle. It may be the most practical vehicle a family could buy in terms of price, utility and safety, and it’s pretty comfortable and attractive as well.

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