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Fresh body styling, tech breathes life into 2022 MINI John Cooper Works models

Hardtop and softop versions the MINI John Cooper Works have been updated for 2022.

Photo courtesy of MINI

MINI recently announced refreshed model information about more traditional Cooper models. Enthusiasts have been patiently waiting for the plans for the performance-focused John Cooper Works models to be made public. Now those retails are known.

The 2022 MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop and Convertible will feature newly fashioned round LED headlights, a larger hexagonal grille, large side air intakes, modified front scuttles, and a diffuser on the rear apron.

MINI's twin-turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine sits under the hood of both models and generates 228 horsepower and a maximum torque of 235 pound-feet of torque. The engine moves the MINI Hardtop from zero to 60 mph in 6.1 seconds when equipped with its standard six-speed manual transmission. To cut that number to 5.9 seconds, opt for the eight-speed Steptronic Sport transmission. The cabrio has a 6.3 zero to 60 mph time and has its engine paired exclusively with the automatic transmission.

2022 MINI Cooper John Cooper Works

2022 MINI Cooper John Cooper Works

Photo courtesy of MINI

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The rag top of the MINI JCW Convertible opens in 18 seconds via the touch of a button at speeds up to 18.6 mph. Buyers can get the MINI Yours soft top that features a woven-in Union Jack graphic.

Two 85-millimetre stainless steel tailpipes serve as the car's available exhaust option.

MINI's engineers have fine-tuned the car's sporty suspension and given the car a sports brake system co-developed with Brembo and 17-inch JCW light alloy wheels. Eighteen-inchers are available, including a new JCWW Circuit Spoke two-tone designed wheel.

The team has also worked on the available Adaptive Suspension, adding new frequency-selective damper technology that operates with an additional valve acting on the traction side. Additionally, the maximum damping force of the Adaptive Suspension is up to 10 percent higher than before.

MINI buyers will get their cars equipped with the company's redesigned 8.8-inch infotainment touch screen display with a black panel design. Two different color schemes are available for the displays on the central instrument display - Lounge and Sport. In Lounge mode, the display surfaces appear in relaxing shades of blue and turquoise. Switching to Sport mode causes the screen backgrounds to glow in red and anthracite. If desired, the color worlds of the displays can be linked to the standard MINI Driving Modes.

The JCW sport seats have integrated headrests and the model gets an anthracite-colored roof lining, a stainless steel pedal gallery and a model-specific gearshift or gear selector lever.. There's a Nappa leather steering wheel with fresh multifunction buttons, grey contrast stitching, and a John Cooper Works logo on the center spoke.

MINI will sell the models with new comfort, connectivity, and driver assistance equipment packages. The roster of new options includes a heated steering wheel, lane departure warning in the Driving Assistant and the Stop & Go function for Active Cruise Control.

Pricing for the 2022 MINI John Cooper Works Hardtop starts at $32,900 and maxes out at $33,900. The Convertible has a starting MSRP of $38,900 and stretches to $44,900 in its top-tier trim level. Every model has an additional $850 destination and delivery fee.

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Some owners have discovered that their car's video games work when the car is moving.

Tesla

Tesla's vehicles are among the most advanced and forward-thinking products of any kind, but serious innovation doesn't come with tradeoffs. The automaker has been in the news recently because of issues with how its advanced cruise control systems function, and now, Autoblog reports that the NHTSA is asking questions about Tesla giving drivers the ability to play video games and browse the internet while driving.

Tesla Arcade hands-on: the Model 3 is your video game consoleyoutu.be

The feature is intended to be used while the car is parked, such as while charging, so the discovery that people can use them while driving is a serious one. Vince Patton, the person who filed the complaint with the NHTSA, tested his car and found that he could play Solitaire and a fairly involved action game while it was in motion. Internet browsing was also possible, meaning the driver could take their attention completely off the road ahead for extended periods of time.

Tesla Model 3Tesla's screens offer advanced functions that many others do not. Tesla

Tesla was already under investigation over crashes involving its Autopilot feature. Several collisions have occurred between Teslas and emergency vehicles stopped on the side of the road. Following the initiation of that investigation, the NHTSA raised other questions with the automaker over a buggy software update that was pushed out, retracted, fixed, and reissued outside of the normal recall process. Despite their names, it's important to clarify that neither the Autopilot nor Full Self-Driving features are capable of driving the cars without driver awareness and input.

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The 2022 Nissan Pathfinder arrives on dealer lots this summer.

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

The 2022 Nissan Pathfinder doesn't have to be capable of rock crawling or deep water fording. What it has to do is service the needs of families in their daily life and give them the opportunity to competently go off-roading on rocky trails should they desire. The new, fifth-generation models does just that and adds in enough nifty features to make it among the most compelling choices for three-row SUV buyers.

The 2022 Pathfinder is thoroughly modern though not the boxy off-roader it once was. The SUV's styling harkens back to that time with a tilted, darkened C-pillar and a return to a more muscular body style. That styling makes straightforward visibility good but for shorter drivers seeing what is immediately in front of the grille is a challenge that necessitates using surround view camera technology (available only in upper trim levels) when navigating challenging terrain.

2022 Nissan PathfinderThe Pathfinder can easily handle the roads less traveled.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

Under the hood is a 3.5-liter V6 that offers up 291 horsepower and torque - plenty to do the job without complaint. The SUV's nine-speed automatic transmission replaces the continuously variable transmission (CVT) from the previous generation and delivers smooth shifts. Though low-end torque isn't as robust as I like it to be, once up over 35 mph, the Pathfinder's powertrain delivers smooth, powerful sailing.

The redesigned architecture and components underpinning the Pathfinder make it stable on the road and don't allow it to wallow on winding roads. Even off-road, the suspension provides the right blend of stability while the drive dynamics allowing the driver to feel engaged with their surroundings whether on freshly paved roads, city streets, or muddy trails.

Nissan has given the Pathfinder a 6,000-pound towing capacity and even when maxed out the engine's functionality is strong as ever. The transmission can get held up in a gear mid-range when performing this function, however, with 5,000-6,000 rpms registering on the tachometer but a quick release of the gas pedal recalibrates the offering bringing it down to a more traditional 2,000 rpm range.

The eight-seater Pathfinder clearly has the Toyota Highlander in its sights, with good reason. It's the top-selling three-row SUV in the country. Nissan boasts that three adults can fit across the rear bench seat of the Pathfinder and, as long as they're average size or smaller, the marketing talking point holds up. There is gobs more room back there than there is in the Highlander.

2022 Nissan PathfinderNissan has given the Pathfinder ample cargo space.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

Getting in and out of the third row is easy thanks to one-touch buttons on the outboard side of the second-row chairs that move the SUV's captain's seats forward creating enough room to get through to the back. Smartly, Nissan's engineers have put duplicates of these buttons on the back side of the same seats allowing third-row passengers to simply press the button to move the seat up.

The third row can also be accessed via a split between the captain's chairs as well, a space traditionally occupied by a center stowage bin/cup holders/arm rest. Owners can quickly remove the center console by opening a panel on the front and pulling the release mechanism. The one-handed operation takes seconds and the console can be easily stored in the under-floor trunk space behind the third row seat for ease.

Speaking of cargo space... The Pathfinder is one of the most spacious midsize SUVs on the market today for both passengers and cargo. There is a substantial amount of room behind the third-row seat and the under-floor storage area is nearly twice the size of the one in the Highlander. Plus, it has a feature that allows the area cover to be automatically propped up when pushed up by a user. This is especially help when carrying groceries or plants home and keeps them from being crushed.

The first- and second-row seats are suitably comfortable, even for extended periods of time and standard trig-zone climate control makes finding the right in-cabin mix easy. Bottle holders in the pockets of the front doors are exceptionally large, fitting even bulky water bottles.

2022 Nissan PathfinderThe Pathfinder's front row seats are comfortable.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

In front of the driver is a standard tachometer, speedometer, and 7.0-inch driver information display. Buyers can upgrade to a fully digital 12.3-inch instrument cluster and head-up display but they're not reason enough to upgrade to the top-tier Pathfinder Platinum on their own.

Nissan packs the new Pathfinder with a host of desirable features that make living with the Pathfinder easier including one-touch auto up/down windows, a wireless phone charger, grocery hooks in the rear cargo area, USB ports in all three rows, second-row sunshades, rear door keyless entry, wireless Apple CarPlay, and a motion-activated lift gate.

The 2022 Nissan Pathfinder is priced to start at $33,410 for the two-wheel drive S base model and $35,310 for the four-wheel drive S base model. The model tops out around $50,000 with destination and delivery included, which seems fair when comparing the Pathfinder to other vehicles in the market.

2022 Nissan PathfinderThe Pathfinder can tow up to 6,000 pounds.Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

If you're thinking of purchasing a Ford Explorer, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Hyundai Palisade, Kia Telluride, Honda Pilot, or Highlander, do yourself a favor and schedule a test drive of the new Pathfinder when it arrives at a dealer lot near you. You may just be surprised how seamlessly it fits into your daily life compared to the competition.

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