CNET Top 5
Tech carsYour favorites among the biggest tech toys of them all.
Can't find a much bigger tech toy than a car. It's CNET Top 5, I'm Brian Cooley with top tech cars you've been lusting for. Grab your pink slip and checkbook and let's get started. #5, is the oddball of the Mercedes line, the S400 Hybrid. The big S class with a smallish V6 and an electric motor. The dealer will tell you it's got V8 performance with V6 economy, but he'll be lying. It's just a big car that doesn't move smartly enough, a full 2 seconds slower than the V8 machine. However, it's the one S class that avoids a gas guzzler tax by getting 4 MPG better fuel economy. I guess that's a win. #4 is the Mini Cooper S. A long time fave with techies, it handles like a go kart, has lots of tech options and is the ideal picnic car since the speedometer can double as a serving plate. On the other hand, it rides like a truck, and I think the retro styling wink is getting a little played after 9 years, but you seem to think otherwise and so it remains a CNET Car Tech perennial. #3 is the Infiniti FX35. Infiniti has been tech gonzo since the beginning, they were out in front around-view cameras, lane departure prevention and blind spot detection, gas pedals that push back when you're lead footing it. But they don't get it all right: Thie FX35 offers a mere 800 *MB* of music storage on its hard drive. Why bother? #2 is Nissan GT-R. Normally weapons of this type costs well into 6 figures and requite a special export license. But the GT-R is more like military gear than a car and makes no apologies. Fast as hell, sporting the most deep tech display ever seen in a dashboard and with looks you either love or hate, it might be the only 80 thousand car that can truly be called a screaming bargain. Before we get to #1, let's take a look at the lamest tech car we've reviewed so far in 2010. It's the Nissan XTerra S. Yeah, it hauls stuff over stuff. But the S trim vehicle doesn't play MP3 discs or have an iPod hookup, or USB port or offer GPS nav, or an AUX jack or .. why did they send this car to us? OK, now our #1 hottest high tech ride, the one you you've been absolutely hammering the last few months: It's the Audi S4. Great cabin tech interface, 3D GPS, B&O audio rig, rorty performance, a 7-speed dual clutch gearbox, good fuel economy and the most uncanny smooth ride. Wow, I gotta' sit down for a minute. No wonder we gave it an EC. Anyway, sorry if I just made you hate your car. That's it for this edition of CNET Top 5. I'm B.C. See you next time.