January 15, 2021

Great

Another bonus is Kia’s excellent five-year limited warranty. Negatives are few but include a bit too much wind and road noise on the highway.

Preferred pick: Soul S, $21,710

SPORTY SMALL HATCHBACK: 2021 Hyundai Veloster



Behind the Wheel-Favorite First Cars

2021 Hyundai Veloster




Small but fun, the Hyundai Veloster is a unique pick because of its three-door layout. It has a single door on its driver’s side and two doors on its passenger side. This configuration creates a sporty, coupe-like appearance with the added benefit of an extra rear door to make it easier for rear passengers to get in and out.

The Veloster’s standard 147-horsepower engine is fine, but consider getting the available turbocharged engine. It makes a stout 201 horsepower and gives the Veloster quick acceleration. The extra power is also a pleasing complement to the Veloster’s sharp handling. Just like Kia, Hyundai offers a five-year limited warranty. On the downside, the Veloster’s ride quality is a little stiff, and the cabin can get noisy at highway speeds.

Preferred pick: Veloster Turbo R-Spec, $24,445

SENSIBLE MIDSIZE SEDAN: 2021 HONDA ACCORD



Behind the Wheel-Favorite First Cars

2021 Honda Accord




Few vehicles get closer to “no-brainer” pick status than the Accord. It’s consistently one of the top-selling cars in America, and the latest-generation Accord is one of Edmunds’ favorite midsize sedans. It’s roomy, upscale and enjoyable to drive. The Accord’s standard turbocharged engine provides pleasing power and above-average fuel economy. The Accord Hybrid is even more efficient, sipping fuel to the tune of 48 mpg in the EPA’s combined city/highway estimate.

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Now, this is teamwork.

Chip Ganassi Racing has signed Tony Kanaan to share the No. 48 car with Jimmie Johnson during the 2021 IndyCar season.

(Chris Graythen/Brian Lawdermilk/Getty Images)

Johnson is making the switch from NASCAR, but will only take part in road and street course events, due to his personal safety concerns about racing on the high-speed oval tracks.

Kanaan has been competing at the top level of open-wheel racing for over two decades and has 17 wins under his belt, including the 2013 Indy 500. The 46-year-old will be back there next May, along with races at Gateway and the Texas Motor Speedway doubleheader.

INDYCAR’S 1,000 HP HYBRID DELAYED TO 2023 DUE TO CORONAVIRUS

“I was on the way out and all of a sudden I get a call from Jimmie about running the ovals. He kept saying ‘Doesn’t this make sense?’” Kanaan told The Associated Press. “They didn’t have to twist my arm to come back, especially with Jimmie and Chip.”

Kanaan had planned for 2020 to be his farewell season, but after most races were held with either limited or no fans in attendance due to the coronavirus pandemic, he is looking forward to the opportunity to share his swansong in front of packed grandstands next year.

“Because of the pandemic, I expressed a desire to come back and do ovals. I never said I wanted to do a full season because I was realistic. So, this is just too good to refuse,” Kanaan said.

The Brazilian previously drove for Ganassi from 2014-2017.

“As the Indy car driver market trends younger and younger, experience is something that cannot be taught — especially at the Indianapolis 500,” team owner Chip Ganassi said.

SEE IT: INDY 500 CHAMP TAKUMA SATO’S HEAD SCULPTED FOR BORG-WARNER TROPHY

“There is no one more experienced in the paddock than Tony, and when we needed the right fit for rounding out our oval program, it was clear he was the right choice.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report

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One of San Francisco’s greatest silver linings of this miserable year could evaporate like the midday fog.

City officials shut the Great Highway, that long stretch of blessedly flat road running alongside Ocean Beach, to cars earlier this year because sand covered parts of it and made it impassable. They kept it closed to give people space to exercise while remaining socially distanced during the COVID-19 pandemic.

And what a wonder it’s been. People bike, stroll, run, scoot, roller skate, skateboard and walk their dogs. Artists have used it as large canvas, and protesters have marched along it for racial justice.

So why did Supervisor Gordon Mar write a letter to the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency threatening to pull his support of the people-centered promenade and instead call for the return of cars? Because drivers that used the highway have spilled into the Outer Sunset without behaving like they’re on residential streets. And SFMTA hasn’t done much to stop them.

“We’re seven months into the closure of the Great Highway, and there still hasn’t been effective traffic diversion and traffic calming measures,” Mar said.

He said he’s convened meetings with SFMTA staff, neighborhood residents and other city officials over the past three months, and nothing much has changed beyond some signs diverting traffic to Sunset Boulevard. Mar said he’s “very serious” about seeing real change by early December or he will call for the Great Highway to be reopened to cars Monday through Friday and remain in its current blissful state only on the weekends.

Matt Brezina, who co-founded People Protected to promote the safety of people over the convenience of drivers, said a stop sign should be added at every corner along the Lower Great Highway, the residential road just to the east of the Great Highway.

“The pace at which SFMTA executes on basic street safety issues is abysmal,” Brezina said.

He added, though, that Mar’s threat to pull support of the car-free Great Highway to promote safety is shortsighted. After all, the Great Highway is safer than it’s ever been.

“If you build a highway along a beautiful stretch of coastline, guess what? It draws people driving in their sports cars to live out their automobile commercial dreams,” Brezina said. “And you know who that’s dangerous to? Little kids who live in the Sunset who used to have to cross the highway to access the beach.”

A portrait of Zinnea C., 4, as she marches along the Great Highway behind hundreds on protesters on Tuesday, June 2, 2020, in San Francisco, Calif. Protests in the Bay Area and the nation continued following the death of George Floyd, who died after being restrained by Minneapolis police officers on Memorial Day. Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin is charged with third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter for the death of Floyd.

Kristen Holland, spokeswoman for SFMTA, said the agency will install four speed tables — speed humps with longer raised middles — along the Lower Great Highway this month. The agency is also hosting a virtual town hall on the matter Saturday.

What happens with the Great Highway will be a good indicator of whether the city will be able to preserve its other pandemic silver linings: outdoor dining in parking spaces, closed-to-cars Twin Peaks Boulevard and JFK Drive, Slow Streets to close residential roads to through traffic and Shared Spaces to close commercial thoroughfares on certain days.

Jodie Medeiros, executive

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a man using a laptop computer: The Drive and its partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links. Read more. With Black Friday fast approaching, many of us are starting to consider what Holiday 2020 will look like as far as shopping in stores versus online. If you’re like many Americans, you may be […]


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The Drive and its partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links. Read more. With Black Friday fast approaching, many of us are starting to consider what Holiday 2020 will look like as far as shopping in stores versus online. If you’re like many Americans, you may be […]

With Black Friday fast approaching, many of us are starting to consider what Holiday 2020 will look like as far as shopping in stores versus online. If you’re like many Americans, you may be concerned about heading out the stores for a Big Box Black Friday Bonanza.

If you’re looking for gift ideas for the car geek in your life, you need a specialty retailer that has all the parts, tools, and automotive accessories you’re looking for. And in 2020, that spot is the legendary Pep Boys.

Pep Boys has got you covered with amazing online deals on automotive gifts, many of which are better than its in-store offers. And you can browse all of the sales from the safety and comfort of your own home. You can even do it in your pajamas if you want; we won’t tell. 

Like a lot of retailers, Pep Boys isn’t waiting until Black Friday to release its best deals of the year. Pep Boys has already started knocking down prices in big ways and will continue to do so throughout the entire month of November–and all the way through the holidays. We’re seeing major markdowns on some of its top-selling products. 

But there’s no way we could list them all. Pep Boys is offering across-the-board Black Friday deals all month long, like 25 percent off car batteries, brake pads and rotors, and shocks and struts, and many more vehicle-specific parts and accessories than we can possibly list. 



Pep Boys Black Friday 2020


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Pep Boys Black Friday 2020

It should be noted that while many of these products are available for purchase online, you may need to go into your local Pep Boys store to pick them up–which should be fast and easy thanks to Pep Boys curbside pickup option. 

So if you’re looking for the best deals on automotive gifts for the car aficionado in your life, look no further than Manny, Moe, and Jack this Black Friday. (Editor’s Note: Prices were valid at press time, but deals expire and prices can change. Check the Pep Boys website for the latest information.)

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Slime Compact Pro Power Tire Inflator

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This super-compact tire inflator packs a ton of power into a tiny package, making it the perfect gift for drivers of cars and light trucks. It’s lightweight and super portable, and comes with a long 17-foot air extension hose

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CPO vehicles benefit from that extra assurance that the vehicle you are buying is free of defects. In the event that you have a problem, the manufacturer or dealer will often provide repairs free of charge or at a limited cost.

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