In this week's Autoblog Podcast, Editor-in-Chief Greg Migliore is joined by West Coast Editor James Riswick. Together, they tackle a week's worth of big news, including the reveals of the BMW M3 and M4 and Volkswagen ID.4, as well as Tesla's Battery Day. Greg's been driving the long-term Subaru Forester, and gives us an update on that, while James discusses the current state and direction of Cadillac after driving the CT5. Then, the two dads talk about child seat safety, as well as random things they've learned from having children of their own.

Transcript

[THEME MUSIC]

GREG MIGLIORE: Hello and welcome to another episode of the "Autoblog Podcast." I'm Greg Migliore. Joining me today from the west coast is our west coast editor, James Riswick. How you doing, man?

JAMES RISWICK: Good. I'm not on fire. So that's good. That's good. So we have-- we have improvements going forward here.

GREG MIGLIORE: For those of you that don't know, James is in Portland, Oregon, which has been faced with the little bit of climate change head on, to put it mildly. The sky is orange. Is it orange right now or yellow or what's it look like?

JAMES RISWICK: No, no, actually, we've returned to perfectly pleasant, slightly rainy weather. But as west coast editor, the entire west coast was on fire. So, you know, it was within my entire jurisdiction.

GREG MIGLIORE: There you go. There you go. It's crazy times. But yeah-- so James is back and healthy. And let's get into the show. We've got some cool stuff coming up in the new segment. You may have heard there's a new M3 and M4, naturally. So that's been a big reveal this week. We're going to talking about something that's actually, I think, pretty important. That's the VW ID4. It doesn't exactly roll off the tongue, but it's a pretty important crossover for them.

And then we have Tesla Battery Day. We're just going to touch on a little bit. I think 0 people have already kind of belabored that, but, you know, we can't let a Tesla event go without us hey, at least kind of weighing in at it.

Reviews. Subaru Forester long term update. I've spent some time in that. You know, it's almost done. It's actually going back in about 10 days. We'll be getting a new long-term-- long-termer. We can talk about that later, though. And then James has been in the Cadillac CT5, which I believe Zac Palmer has also been in. We did a little bit of a swap locally. But James is going to give us his take on that.

And then believe it or not, you may or may not know this, this is sort of safety week for children in cars that encapsulates all sorts of things. But for us, that means we're to talk about car seats and car seat safety, and things you can do, inspections you can go get. Ways, if you're really interested, you can actually get certified-- I didn't know this until I actually had a kid-- but certified technicians for car seats are a thing.

And we'll leave some of these links in the post, so if you're listening to this, you can find out how you can go get your car seat certified or your installation, if you will-- have somebody else take a look at it. Just a little bit of a preview here. First time I took mine in, it was in like, 95% right. But of course, the tech found something, and that's OK. I was glad she did.

So let's get right into this BMW, M3, M4, very important review for you know a lot of you guys who are traditional Autoblog readers. You know, this is one of the-- it's just if you're a performance guy, this is something that you always are excited about. To you, Tesla doesn't matter. This is definitely a more important thing. It's more paramount. Just your initial reactions, James. What did you think of this?

JAMES RISWICK: Um, well, I'm just going to keep my visual critique brief here. Yuck. That's it.

GREG MIGLIORE: All right, so you're keeping it-- keeping it succinct, all right.

JAMES RISWICK: Visual-- visual, that's-- that's my visual interpretation. Take a little step further, I would say that the person in charge of the literal styling of the car, be it your color selection and your interior materials choice and interior colors-- they're doing an excellent job. The green on the M3 sedan-- fantastic. The kind of bright yellow thing going on the M4-- fantastic. Follows in the tradition of Dakar Yellow of the '90s M3. And then your Phoenix Yellow of the 2000 era E-46 M3. It follows in tradition. I like it a lot.

The interior of the M4 has this really cool light blue, almost like Laguna Seca Blue of the 2000 vintage highlighted with yellow. It's very cool. So literal styling person doing a great job. Whoever did the nose, though-- again, let's keep it short, yuck.

GREG MIGLIORE: Fair enough, James. You know the funny thing? I saw-- I was scrolling through Slack-- Slack for those of you who don't, like, work in their-- work from home and work in their basements and such-- it's obviously an online messaging thing. Very common, maybe-- but anyway, I digress. I was scrolling through a Slack messaging thing and I was like, yeah, I kind of like it.

But I was moved really quick. And then, like, two or three people were, like, uh, Greg, did you look at this thing? I think, you, James, actually said something that caught my eye. You were like, get your eyes checked. I'm, like, geez, what's he talking about? But then I kind of went back and looked at it like, oh, wow. As I looked closer, this seems a little ill-conceived.

I know we've had-- a lot of us have had issues with the grille on different BMWs. I actually think that some of the larger ones like the X7, this idea of this weird larger grille could work. The smaller you get, the sportier you get, the less it works. And in this case, I mean, I guess what I don't like about it mostly as we really obsess over the grille, is that it seems to really be tacked on and not flow with the rest of the car, which I think looks OK. It just really seems like they're, like, we got to stand out, let's dial up this, like, crazy grille. And it's a little-- it's a little rough. It's not great, Bob. Let's put it that way.

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah, it really looks tacked on a sedan, especially since we know what the sedan regularly looks like. I will least say that the gloss black outline and the horizontal slats are better than the honeycomby thing that's on the regular 4 Series. But still, again, yuck.

GREG MIGLIORE: I think the-- do you think-- 3 or 4, which one do you think looks better right now?

JAMES RISWICK: Uh--

GREG MIGLIORE: They're both equally--

JAMES RISWICK: Degrees of yuck, yeah. We're just going to go with that. It's just so unnecessary.

GREG MIGLIORE: I'd say the 4 looks marginally better, but only because I feel like-- for me, the M-- yeah, I don't know. It's a little bit of a toss up. I don't know.

JAMES RISWICK: It's just been downhill.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: You know, the E90 one, from the late '00s, the V8 one, that's-- it was just downhill after that. I mean, M4, that's fine, but it started to look a little heavy. Little-- it's like it gains-- it looked like it gained a little around the middle. So yeah, I don't think I'll be lining up to buy one of these on the used market someday. Not that you'd be able to, anyway. M3 used prices are so absurd. Even E36s is from the '90s now are just, like, climbing into ridiculous levels. And people traditionally have not thought very highly of that car. So good luck if you want an E46 that hasn't been bashed to hell.

But that's talking about old ones-- the new one. In terms of-- now we should probably get away from just talking about the way it looks, which may be difficult for people. But otherwise, in terms of its specs, it has the 3 liter turbo inline 6, just like the M4, M3 did. But then it basically has two different silos you're in. There's the regular M3, M4. That has 473 horsepower, 406 pound feet of torque. And it only comes with rear wheel drive and, drum roll, please, a manual transmission. Yay!

[APPLAUSE]

GREG MIGLIORE: Thre you go. Cue the applause, the stand up and cheer ending.

JAMES RISWICK: Absolutely. And then you have the M3-M4 competition. Now this has the same engine, but the dial has been turned up to 503 horsepower and 479. This comes only with an automatic. It's a DCT. Standard rear wheel drive for now. And then it'll have all wheel drive as an option. Now that power output largely aligns with what you'd get in the C 63 S Coupe. And it has the same torque as the base C63. So actually, the horsepower and torque between the M3, M4, and that's competition version is kind of-- it kind of goes back and forth with the Mercedes, which is its closest competitor, because it too is offered in a coupe in a traditional sedan.

But the ultimate thing is they get basically the same 0 to 60 time of 3.83, 3.7 seconds. The regular M4 is 4.1 seconds, but that's largely the result of it being-- having the manual transmission. They're just not as quick as the machines are. You are not as quick as the machines are. Frankly, I'm willing to make that sacrifice. 3/10 of a second-- totally fine with that.

And then, you know, we had-- I put up a comparison of specs on the site in looking at M3-- or M4 versus the C-- the C coupe, the Audi RS5, the Lexus RC F, and then the Americans. Ford Shelby GT 350 and Camaro SS 1 LE. Now you can put aside the prices and any sort of brand snobbery, but when you look at these on a comparison sheet, I was surprised at how closely they all align. Even in terms of weight.

And actually, the Americans, they might be-- people might be quick to slag the American muscle cars as big and fat. No, they're lighter by a bit than all of those-- the European sport ones. You know, less sound deadening, fancy leather, and stuff will probably do that. But in terms of dimensions, they're even really close. Nearly identical. So I thought that was really interesting that how closely aligned the American muscle cars now are to these high-end European sport coupes. I mean, the GT 500 has 526 horsepower. And, you know, I thought that was really cool looking at all of them aligned.

GREG MIGLIORE: It's a really nice graphic. You know, to your point James, what is stunning to me is how well the Camaro 1 LE actually really grades out when you factor in the money. And then you look at these raw figures, it's by far the lightest car here, which is surprising. I mean, I guess by far-- it's got the Shelby by about 40 plus pounds.

JAMES RISWICK: That's a couple hundred pounds, Yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: That's-- yeah, I don't know. It's impressive.

JAMES RISWICK: And, of course, I'm very quick to always point out that, you know, a car's goodness is not indicated by a spreadsheet. So I drove the last M4 on a track back to back with the Camaro SS 1 LE. Actually, correction, I drove it with like the V6 one as well as the SS. And it was shocking-- it was shocking how well it did against an M4. I mean, it was definitely quicker around the track than just the base M4 was. I still think there was something to be said for kind of the x factors of the M4, and I did still enjoy that car. But again, they're right there with the M4 for the C 63, and it's really-- and it's really kind of cool, while being cheaper.

But back to the-- actually, we should-- the thing now with the M3, there's also the sedans. It doesn't have a lot of competitors. There's a C 63, the RS5 sport back-- that's a sedan, even though it has a hatchback. And then the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio, da da da. They're all right there are kind of similarly spec'd out, if you will. The Alfa is also 0 to 63 in 3.8 seconds, 505 horsepower. They're all very closely aligned. And I think I can speak for both of us when I say that's a comparison I would like to do.

GREG MIGLIORE: Absolutely. Laguna Seca, man. That'd be a good place to run these things around, have some fun out there. I-- couple other things I want to call out here. If you're, like, listening to this on the weekend, you're walking the dog, you're on your patio maybe sipping a beer, you're, like, what else do I didn't know about the M3 and the M4? Well one, check out the-- obviously, the original story. Check out this comparison that James has done.

And also, check out an M3 through the years done by our road test editor, Zac Palmer, which I think is a really nice read. It gets me a little nostalgic. There's a line from-- I don't know if you're a "Mad Men" fan, James, but there's a line where Don Draper says, nostalgia is a powerful thing. It's where we yearn-- you know, a time we yearn to return to or something to that effect. When I look at this, I think to myself, man, I really-- like, the E90-- I mean, loved it, you know? The first, the E30 and the E36 really stick with me. But yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: We had-- so I guess, like, a decade ago, I worked at Edmunds.com. And we had a long term E90 M3 sedan. It was white. Of course, it had the V8 and it had a manual. And at the exact same time, as part of our kind of classic long term program, we had an E46 M3. Black-red interior with-- with the manual. And it was really interesting having those two cars back to back. And, you know, at the time, the E46 was such a car I kind of lusted after, and really, like, you know, it's kind of car up on a poster on your wall kind of thing.

And I kind of-- I was [INAUDIBLE] surprised-- didn't like it as much as I thought I would. I wasn't-- I wasn't a big fan of the steering as much as I thought I was. It wasn't kind of the same as other BMWs at the time. And it just-- yeah, I was kind of surprised that it wasn't, like-- it didn't-- don't meet your heroes kind of thing. It was still sensational--

GREG MIGLIORE: I was just about to say that. Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah. I did like the E90 better with the V8. And even the one eventually that had the DCT was like really something. But that car is really special. I think the E46 still gets a lot of the-- it gets a lot of the attention still to this day. But that E90 with V8, that'll be a one of a kind. There will only ever be one M3 with a V8 in it. But besides that, just everything about that car was just really dynamically special. And I think just from a-- putting nostalgia aside, if I just wanted to pick one that, like, that's the one I want to drive, it would be that E90.

GREG MIGLIORE: Well, I don't know why you'd put nostalgia aside. I think that's a lot of-- you know, sometimes, that's fun, you know? But I hear you. And I think that's-- Yeah, man. So I've never driven either one of those and that makes me definitely jealous, you know? I-- I would like to drive those cars. So you have any final thoughts on the M3, M4? You know, we could just end it with your original design analysis of yuck.

JAMES RISWICK: [LAUGHTER]

GREG MIGLIORE: You know, I wouldn't disagree. I used to write design pieces a little bit more when I was at Auto Week as we go through our past lives here, and I've been thinking about like the hits and Mrs. Of all the reveals we've had in the last couple of weeks here. And to me, I thought the Z car was a home run. I liked the ID4, which we're about to talk about. But BMW-- like, holy cow, man. I don't know. This-- the design language is urgh.

JAMES RISWICK: I mean, if you look back in time, like, Bangle right that the old the old Bangle cars. So your 5 Series and the Bangle butt of the 7 Series. You know, they were very controversial. Certainly, elements trickled throughout the car industry-- flames surfacing on the side, even that Bangle butt. But BMW walked that back, you know?

Whatever the hell the last generation 5 Series internal code was, I don't know, but whatever-- that looked far more like the E46, sort of like you're your late '90s classic 5 Series than the one in the middle did. The one with like the weird kabuki eye headlights and the rounded front, really slab-like chunky rear end. That-- that is kind of a one-off. That did not trickle through at the BMW line.

Again, you know, that Z4, they walked that back. The second Z4 looks a lot more like the Z3 than it did the Z4. So you wonder-- you know, OK, so BMW is willing to take big steps and then walks it back. I wonder if this is going to happen. Will these just be the weird nostrils that the current designer guy thinks is not pretty-- he definitely doesn't think it's pretty. I've read interviews with the dude. He does not think-- he's not going for pretty. He's going for challenging. OK, well good job. I guess you've done. It is challenging.

GREG MIGLIORE: Well, he's challenging the rest of us, is what he's doing, to like his cars.

JAMES RISWICK: Yes. But I don't know-- I like pretty cars. I don't know. Maybe I guess I'm weird according to this dude. But I like-- I like pretty cars. And this ain't-- this ain't pretty. I mean, not that old BMWs were pretty, but at least they were just, you know, like, timeless.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: They-- they look good today. And I don't-- I don't-- you know, that Bangle kabuki-eyed 5 Series did not age well. It looks-- it looks-- it's timed. So.

GREG MIGLIORE: Subtle, elegant, timeless-- I would not use those words to describe anything related to the new M3 or M4. You know what this reminds me a little bit of-- is maybe five, six years ago, Cadillac and Lexus were making their vehicles like the F sports and the V series as in your face as they could be. I mean, the Cadillacs almost had fins. They were so, like, over the top.

And now-- and we'll talk about this in a second here-- the CT5, the CT4, I think was a more classically beautiful-looking cars. And I think that's the way to go, which is when you look at some of these earlier M3s, that's-- I think it's more representative of that. It was a different time in BMW's history, too. I think they were in a different place as a luxury maker when you look back in the early '90s versus where they are now. Of course, the luxury segment is changed. But-- but we can leave it there.

Let's talk about the ID4, which it's funny in the news cycle this week, there was Tesla Battery Day, which, like, I heard about that everywhere. NPR, it was on network news. It was a big deal. Blew up social media just because, you know, Elon Musk. But they didn't say a whole lot that was tangible or was even imminent. What is-- and maybe that was just the Tesla segment right there, I don't know-- but what is coming quite relatively soon is the ID4.

This is a-- we'll call it a crossover. It is. It's, like, a compact crossover that looks pretty good. We're looking at a range of 250 miles. And then the price is around 40 grand. So when you take all of those, like, elements, I think it really adds up to a competitive vehicle, and there's a gazillion Volkswagen dealers. You'll be able to get one of these. They'll be available. I mean, this to me is, like, what we need to bring electrification more to the masses.

And I think the fact that it's almost not cool-- I mean, Volkswagen isn't what I would say, like, a cool brand, if you will. It's just a-- it's a brand, you know? It's a Volkswagen. It's whatever, you know? And I think that's what we need for electrification to become more mainstream.

You wrote a piece today kind of weighing in on just how important you think the ID4 is. I would agree with you, quite frankly. It's very important. And I think this could be something that might end up making Volkswagen-- like, this could be the car that fully gets it past Dieselgate, fully gets it past some of its previous missteps. And, you know, we'll see. This could be the home run they're looking for.

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah. Well, first, I will say that for people of our age and older, the problem with the name ID4 is that I immediately think of Will Smith, aliens, and blowing up the White House. But beyond that-- and the movie, "Independence Day" was known as ID4 at the time. Anyway, beyond that, moving on to why this is a big deal.

So there's currently what I call an electric gap, meaning in terms of both size and price. So you have cars like the Chevy Bolt and the Kona-- Hyundai Kona electric. They are affordable. You can-- the average American can buy one since the average American car is around $35,000. Those cars are below that. The problem is those cars are too small for the average American family, and their interiors aren't that nice, and they are kind of subcompact cars. Now that is not a very popular vehicle type for American car buyers.

But then you have ritzier choices-- your Model S, your Model X, Audi e-tron, Jaguar I PACE. They're, like, 80 grand. Yes, there are cheaper versions, but you're still look-- 65 grand. That is way more than the typical American car buyer can make. Therefore, you have this giant gap that is also aligned directly with the exact types of cars and the exact price points that most Americans buy their cars. So really, no wonder no one's buying an electric car, because electric cars are not the body styles and price point that people are buying.

This car fits right into that gap. It is-- starts Just around $40,000 and is actually-- like, it seems, like, well-equipped at that. And then you have-- that's even before you apply the $7,500 federal tax credit in addition to any state credits that you might have. So right there, you're in that $35,000 average transaction price that that will be appealing to the most-- to a very large number of car buyers who are currently buying CRVs, Rav4s, Ford Edges in that price point.

But then the other thing is size. Because people will, quite rightly point out, that a Tesla Model S is in that price range, even though you kind of have to buy an even more expensive one to get equipment, but never mind. But it's like a compact luxury sedan like a BMW 3 Series. But that's not-- you know, the bulk of the market, that would be compact mid-sized SUVs as well as mid-sized family sedans like a Honda Accord.

The ID4 is basically the-- is the same size on the outside as a Honda CRV, Toyota Rav4, Ford Escape. And if you go buy their gargantuan sales, well, that is, like, the bulk of the market. That's what people are apparently looking for. So it has that right size. Inside, pretty similar interior space as those-- maybe a little less cargo room, but it's still totally average.

So what you have here is the exact body style that so many Americans are looking for in a price that is pretty much what Americans are paying. And you add it all-- with a range that's perfectly usable-- 250. And you have their Electrify America charging network that's growing. So you have the potential here for something that can really be a big deal. And it's the first time anything's been like that on both-- filling that electric gap. And I think it's really important because of that, has really strong potential.

Now of course, you still have the x factors of, you know, will people like the look of it? Will people view, as you pointed out, like, Volkswagen as a brand they want to sign up for much-- because that's definitely been fueling Tesla. It's not just that Tesla is an electric car. It's that it's a brand, it's a look, it's what it says. It's more of an all-encompassing thing.

I do think Volkswagen carries, like, a higher brand value than a-- like a Honda or a Toyota or a Ford. Kind of there's somewhat of a residual-- some residual from its days of being kind of a premium, you know, adjacent manufacturer. So it does have the potential there. So I'm really excited about that, not just because, you know-- it, in particular, but it just shows that this is the type of car that we need. And hopefully, other makers are going to be coming out with things like this, because we can talk all we want about, you know, like, a Chevy Bolt and how great it is. But how many people are buying that? Or how great a Jag I-PACE is and how exciting that is, but it's 80 grand.

So, you know, it's really only viable for a small number of people. This is viable for a lot of people. You know, the people-- it's actually the closest that Volkswagen has come to an actual people's car in this country, in, I don't know, decades, my lifetime? I don't know. So that's my rant on the ID4.

GREG MIGLIORE: I think when you look at electric vehicles in the United States, I feel like car companies have never quite gotten the shape or the price right. The price has often been prohibitive because they've tried to recoup some of their investment. I mean, I don't really think no matter how much you charge, you're fully gonna get all the different things you need to do to make a credible electric offering.

But-- and then even more so, they've made these, like-- many of the shapes in the segments that they've played in have not been where consumers are. Even Tesla with the Model 3 and the Model S, expensive. You know, people are somewhat moving away from sedans-- they're beautiful cars. I mean, you see plenty of them on the road, and they're very attractive. And I think they do a lot for Tesla as a brand and as a luxury brand.

But, you know, Model X, Model Y, you know, that's kind of where they-- they have, I think, their best opportunity. And then when you see a mainstream brand like Volkswagen jump in there, and, you know, people don't have to do brain recalibration to buy a Volkswagen crossover. Yeah, the naming convention-- ID4, that's-- I don't know. They're trying stuff. I get that when you have an electric, like, sort of sub brand, sure. You gotta come up with this whole new, like, you know, alphanumeric nomenclature-- sure, go for it. I just-- I feel like the car industry is getting a little saturated. You don't even know what's what anymore, you know?

But yeah, I mean, so far, this is, I think, one of the most important things we've seen. It generated much less buzz than some of the other things that were a little splashier, a little saucier. But it's hugely important.

JAMES RISWICK: And two other points. One is that even Elon musk yesterday during Battery Day said that, you know, they don't-- they still don't sell an "affordable," quote, car. Something that would start around 25 grand. And when you look at Tesla's packaging and the way they price cars, a 25 grand car that they would-- a 25 grand Tesla starting point would probably put you in around, like, the price point of this ID4, around 4,000-- 40 grand, once you actually put equipment on it. So, like, even he points out that gap that exists. And I was going to make another point, but now I've forgotten it. So we'll just have to--

GREG MIGLIORE: Well, I'll say this-- Tesla can get away with selling expensive cars because it's a prestige symbol. It's a status symbol. Whereas Volkswagen, I think there's a limit to how much people will be willing to pay for a Volkswagen. And so they need to kind of come in with this commodity pricing. And I think it could be a win-- a winning strategy. I mean, we'll see.

JAMES RISWICK: The other thing-- my other point was electric cars tend to be pretty damn dorky. Chevy Bolt-- pretty dorky. Hyundai Kona with its blunt front end-- kind of dorky. Nissan Leaf-- hello? This looked pretty good. I think this looks very sleek. It's doing the LED strip lighting. It's optional, but nevertheless, it has, like, contrasting roof designs.

I don't think that-- it's no less dorky-- no more or less dorky than any of the other compact SUVs out there. So I think that's important. You don't want to drive some dork mobile just because you want an electric car. And I think that's part of the reason that Tesla has been successful. And that they don't have the legacy of an existing car brand.

Like Tesla, is automatically electric car-- you know that. Even with the Volkswagen ID4, you have to educate people that, oh, ID4 means electric car. Well, that's kind of something that's difficult to do. So yeah. I think the lack of dork factor also will be in its favor.

GREG MIGLIORE: Well, while we're talking Tesla here, any battery day takeaways? I, mean for me, The headline is potentially that $25,000 car that's still three years away. I went back and looked at it-- Elon promised this two years ago and it's not here-- in 2018. And now he's sort of kicking the ball down the field and, you know, resetting the downs, to use a couple of bad cliches there. And now we're looking at 2023, maybe. I think it could be a game changer for Tesla, for sure, if they could do that.

Three years is a long time. Battery development is always the trickiest part. You know, what-- you know, that is the true nitty gritty research of design things that you need to do to make your product, you know, different and better, you know? I think some people buy Teslas for the looks. And I think the name, frankly, carries-- like, we were talking about-- it carries a lot. But, I mean, that's how they're going to beat people-- is if they can sell a car at 25 grand, and it's a Tesla, and it's got, you know, the range that they're aiming for. So.

I mean, he threw a lot of other numbers out there. Cybertruck numbers, just a whole bushel of different, you know, Elon Musk things. You know, there's the Plaid Model S, but whatever. I mean, I think that's cool, but I don't think it means all that much. It just-- it further takes them into, like, if you're rich and you want to Tesla, well then, yeah, you can get this one, which to me is an entirely logical move. But it doesn't really move the needle for what they are or what they need to be.

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: That was my big takeaway.

JAMES RISWICK: I'm never terribly impressed by the never-- the always shortening 0 to 60 times. Where they often will just do it once and then kind of go into-- and then that's it. They just do it once. There's a reason-- they don't have the-- you can't-- it is not the performance car of the Porsche's Taycan, because you just-- it just doesn't have the longevity and the repeatability to do all the performance things. And that's fine. That's fine.

It doesn't need to, like-- that's why I'm unimpressed with the 0 to 60 times that they put out. Like, great, you can do it once, and maybe that's all you're ever going to do, but it-- it will not be challenging. You know, I'm sure there are those who looked at the 0 to 60 times of those-- of the M3 and the C 63 S and pointed out that there's some Model 3 that can batter them all. Yeah, but in terms of the overall driving experience, no. No, that is one data point.

So really, the important thing is those batteries-- and not just the cost, but there's also matters of packaging. Because, you know, a Tesla Model S and Y can go a really long way because they're enormous and therefore, they can fit a lot of batteries inside. Whereas something kind of tiny like a BMW i3-- well, it doesn't go that far, because it doesn't have a lot of space for batteries in it. You need a lot of space for them.

The other thing going forward is, you know there's the-- the dark thing about batteries is all the materials that go into them and the mining that has to be done in terms of rare earth metals. And that-- that's not and can't be a very environmentally friendly process. Mining generally isn't. But, you know, where are those-- where is that mining happening? Who's doing it? Cough-- China. And there's-- there's a lot going there. It's not like battery electric vehicles are totally green, you know?

If everyone's driving an electric car, do we-- do we have enough ability to-- to produce that many electric vehicles? And recycling of these things-- like, there is a lot to be-- it isn't just as simple as it initially seems. And it's really not all that simple. Anyway, switching to electric cars.

GREG MIGLIORE: That's an interesting-- well, California says they're going to do it completely by 2035. There's more nuance to it than that, but that was one of the headlines I saw today. Something like no new internal combustion cars in 2035. What I think is interesting too is nobody's really done this story. Maybe we should do it-- I don't know. Like, what is, like, the downsides of driving an electric car? You know, when you look at the complete environmental footprint of all the things you have to do to get some of those parts, which are not easy to get, specifically related to the battery, like, to your point.

Really, this battery day, because it was so battery-focused-- and this shows you, like, the Tesla effect-- when General Motors or Toyota does a thing, people talk about the car. When Tesla does something like this, they talk about all sorts of things. And Tesla, I thought, really did an interesting job of casting the spotlight on to the battery tech itself. Obviously, it was Battery Day.

But, I mean, GM does this stuff all the time, and people are, like, yeah, it's a battery. Here's a bunch of stuff that only really hybrid nerds no one understand and everybody forgets about it. Like, do you know what LTM is? That's, like, their super important powertrain hybrid, you know, amazing thing. And I couldn't tell you much more about it other than I think it's going to be in the Hummer.

Whereas, Elon Musk goes on his livestream, draws almost 300,000 people, and starts talking about battery tech and all these other things. And the conversation just is totally elevated. So, I mean, to me, that just shows you how influential Tesla is as a company right now.

JAMES RISWICK: Well, it transcends-- it transcends the automotive community.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: Whereas, you know, a car announcement is just cars. Well, this is also like tech people in addition to-- so, like, a Tesla is very much yet another tech gadget, not unlike a smartphone or anything else. Whereas a Chevy Bolt is not. It just isn't. People don't think of it that way. So it-- kind of--

GREG MIGLIORE: True. He's putting people into outer space and you know--

JAMES RISWICK: And the fact that Musl does far more than Tesla, as well. Yeah, but also, I mean, Tesla is him, you know? All the other car companies, well, you know, Henry Ford's been dead for a while now. And so has-- you know, like, if Soichiro Honda was still around, like, I bet it would be pretty awesome to have him around dealing with all-- like, coming up with interesting-- he'd be-- he'd be a guy.

I mean, the closest thing another car company has is Toyota. They have a man with the name-- with his name on the door, too. And I think that actually has made, like, a big difference for them. But there's-- there's nothing like that. I mean, with Musk and Tesla, you have the guy who founded the company and who drives it still around. You know, this would have been the case 100 plus years ago in the car industry. But it sure isn't today. They're all dead.

GREG MIGLIORE: It's, true it's true. You do have Bill Ford, who is sort of the executive chairman.

JAMES RISWICK: Oh yeah. That's actually another good example.

GREG MIGLIORE: The grandson-- great grandson of Henry Ford.

JAMES RISWICK: That's another good example. He's done a very-- he's kind of-- he drives the company in a very positive way, including in the green sector. If wasn't for him, I'd argue they wouldn't have made an Escape hybrid before, like, in the early '00s. But that car was, like, way ahead of its time. And it was because he stuck his neck out and, we should do green stuff in the middle of the company not doing anything else that was remotely green or anything else, really.

GREG MIGLIORE: That's true. I mean, he was-- I remember reading an article where, like, the bean counters and the engineers were, like, there is no reason to be doing some of these things. Let's build more Expeditions and things like that. And he was like, well, no, I think we should do this. And my name's on the wall, so we're going to do it, even though at the time, it maybe didn't make sense. So he had a lot of vision for that. And yeah, I mean, you get these figures.

Like, even, I think, like-- you know, Sergio Marchionne-- like, his name wasn't on the building, but he was such an outsized personality that he did kind of like, break through that barrier. But you don't see it for many other car executives, so. And I think-- I've interviewed Elon Musk one time, and I think I-- maybe he was at an auto show a couple other times back-- this is how I'm dating myself-- when Tesla went to auto shows. But-- and this is, like, sort of before he was like really, like, Elon Musk-- he was always Elon Musk, But you know I mean? Like, you could still interview him if he like was speaking somewhere and you weren't herded off by either all the fans or the security.

And, you know, it's interesting, because he kind of was, like, yeah, I don't have it all figured out, you know? And I think, you know, this is more like-- he would use the term his company, that sort of thing. And it's different, I guess, when your name's on the building, let's put it that way. So I think that was a pretty thorough Tesla segment.

We've gone on and on about the news, but I think that's OK, because neither one of us has a lot to say about the cars we've been driving. I've got a long term update here on the Forester and you drove the CT5. I'll just chime in real quick with our Forester. It's going back October 2. You've probably heard a lot about it over the last year almost, exactly. It's been a good long termer. We've put a lot of miles on it.

It's-- you know, it's been used for a gazillion trips up north, as we say here in Michigan. We've tried to get a bunch of staffers through it. Generally, everybody has liked it for the most part. I think-- you know, I didn't do anything in the last, like-- I've had it now for a little over a week. I haven't done anything that's changed my opinion of it. I think it's very competitive.

I think it maybe wouldn't be the first thing I would pick in this segment, but, you know, it's just a good-- you know, a good mule, if you will. This current generation of Forester styling, I'm not totally in love with. We did have it on gold wheels, which is kind of neat with the winter tires. It's back on its normal just, like, stock wheels, which as I do a before and after-- the normal stock wheels look better. Those winter gold wheels were-- like, it was fun at the time when there was a bunch of snow, but now it's kind of, like, ugh, what were we thinking with that?

JAMES RISWICK: It was-- it wasn't the right exterior color for them.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, there was a little bit of a sharp contrast. But yeah, I mean, it's-- it's fine. You know, that four cylinder engine, 182, I think, horsepower-- you know, it's fine. I mean, when I look at like-- basically, when I look at Forester, I immediately start to think Outback and in most cases I would probably go with the Outback over the Forester. I just think it's a little bit all around better sy what it does. And it also manages to be more unique.

JAMES RISWICK: Yes.

GREG MIGLIORE: Whereas the Forester, I think, kind of blends-- blends in.

JAMES RISWICK: Or it doesn't really do anything better apart from providing Popemobile levels of outward visibility--

GREG MIGLIORE: That's amazing.

JAMES RISWICK: --other than anything else. It is insane in there. It really is. It's almost-- it's almost silly, the visibility in that car. But I would rather have the Rav4, for instance.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, the Rav4. Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: But, like, the Outback-- there's, like, literally nothing like an Outback. It's the only one of that size. And besides being just a wagon, it actually is wider and more comfortable than a Forester. And offers that big turbo engine now. And there's some functional advantages, too. So yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: One thing I've noticed, too is I have one child and I have one dog and one wife. And they all fit in the Forester quite well for things like, you know, day trips, camping and whatnot. If we had a second child, I feel like the Forester we would grow just from, like, a comfort perspective. Practically, you could get two car seats in there. The dog will still find a place to lay down and get comfy. But she's pretty big-- she's a golden retriever.

But my point is is, like, you know, you need that third row pretty quick, I think. I can see why Subaru decided to, like, start making bigger vehicles. You know, I don't have the interior dimensions in front of me, But. I've never felt as cramped in an Outback as I do sometimes in the Forester. So.

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah, it's longer. It has more length as opposed to height. And for the most part, if you think about it, like, where do you put the bags and your stuff? You're not-- you're not, like, putting it up high, right? Like, having a dome doesn't really do you a lot of good. So, like, the Outback is longer, so you actually have more like space between the seating rows, which is particularly helpful with the rear-facing child seats.

You know-- hey, for our future conversation here-- as well as more length in the cargo area. So you can fit more of actual bags back there. And I have. It's shocking how much crap you can stuff in the back an Outback. I almost managed to fit as much in there as a Forerunner, which is just a huge box.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah so I was able to get a set of enormous, like, live production-caliber speakers in the back of an older Outback. We drove to Chicago, my brother and I. This is back in probably 2010, so whatever generation of Outback that was. These were huge speakers. I mean, the kind of thing that, like, Van Halen would be rolling out at the Staples Center or something-- I don't know what made me say Van Halen, either. But these are, like, big speakers. And yeah, I mean, just the Outback is, you know, highly usable in that sense.

JAMES RISWICK: It's also really-- and it's also, like, literally big. I mean, it has a lot of-- it's well-packaged, but it's huge.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: It's a really bit-- I live in Portland, so surprise, I see a lot of them. And, like, they are a big vehicle. I have a 2013 Audi All Road, and it's, like, dwarfed by the thing.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: It's really shocking. I mean, they're kind of-- they're similarly, you know, tall wagon things. But the Outback is way bigger. Way bigger.

GREG MIGLIORE: So tell me about this Cadillac you've been rolling around in-- CT5.

JAMES RISWICK: No, actually I drove it a month ago, because I've been-- I've been off for a month. But yeah. So it's an interesting car. I will try-- we're running long here, so I could probably speak another 40 minutes about Cadillac in general-- ugh. But you can tell where they put their money. And it goes-- a big giant chunk of it goes to the chassis people, because, like, on a mountain road, this large sedan is pretty damn masterful.

I mean, it just-- it is brilliant. You hit a mid-corner bump, and it just-- it's like it's not there at all. And Cadillac, quite clearly, wanted to set out-- and I say that Cadillac acts like BMW stole their girlfriend and wants to show them up at every opportunity. And how to do that is to oh, everybody wants BMW, because they're wonderful to drive, and they go around the Nuremberg Ring, yadda yadda, so we're going to do that. We're going to build a car that can do all that. And they did that.

Problem is I don't know how many people care anymore about that. BMW doesn't think they do because BMW doesn't even build BMWs to that extent anymore. They've made them bigger and comfier and more luxurious. And to that extent, the CT5 just does not resonate. It looks great. As you pointed out earlier, the CT5 shows a level of taste and restraint and classic proportions and detailing that Cadillac hasn't had since like the Bill Mitchell Era in the '60s. I mean, it's a-- they look really nice.

But then the interior-- all that cash that went elsewhere-- there was not a lot left over for the interior. It is pretty-- in terms of its design, pretty derivative of the last generation BMW-- kind of to further the point from earlier. The materials are just eh. I kind of went on a rant like this to my father-- he later got in the car and went, well, this seems nice enough. And I'm, like, yes, exactly. That's kind of my point. This is nice enough. Like, that was their goal. It was, like, we just need to make this nice enough.

The problem is, again, people are looking for-- if you're spending 60, 70 grand, which is what the CT5 costs-- if you're spending that much money, you want your luxury car to feel special. And you get into a Mercedes E Class and you're, like, yeah, yeah, this is special. This is different.

And then to another point-- Lincoln. So Lincoln has figured it out not by making sure that the Aviator can go around the Nuremberg Ring, but by one, just blowing everything away with power. So kind of, like, the classic luxury sedan of yeah, we don't care about handling, but we'll give you a boatload of power. And just interior. Like, design and making it feel special and different.

And offering something that when just-- like, when most luxury car buyers are looking for something, they're going to get in and go, well, this is clearly different than the BMW or the Audi. This is offering me something. This seems special. I don't mind paying that much more for it. That's something you will immediately notice.

It is also something you will appreciate every single day. Being able to absolutely haul ass on a mountain road and with wonderful aplomb and ability-- that's great, but how often are you really doing it? When in an ideal world, it could do that, and look really swank and special inside, but it just doesn't.

And the thing is, like, when I think of Cadillac, I think of big, grand, just classic cars, classic American luxury. And when you look at Cadillac's concept cars over the years, that's exactly what they've been. So clearly, someone kind of clues into that. But the cars they make don't-- don't do that. They're trying to be something that I don't think Cadillac really is, and people don't expect them to be. And this is just yet another car that just doesn't really live up to, like, what I think most people expect Cadillac to be.

GREG MIGLIORE: That's a-- that's a really good point. I think one of the areas where you've seen Cadillac sort of get its lunch eaten is the interiors. I mean, Lincoln-- if you think back 10 years ago, their interiors were a punch line. And now, we rave about them. We're, like, these are great interiors. And nobody is frankly, more surprised than me to like almost be praising Lincoln as effusively as we have been lately with their interiors almost across the board. So that to me is definitely an area of growth for Cadillac.

I like how this looks, though, the outside of the car, for sure. I mean, you know, we were talking about understated elegance and performance, and this embodies all of that. It does go back to that more timeless look from the '60s. I'll drop another "Mad Men" reference. I always liked Don Draper's '62 Coupe Deville. I thought that was a great-looking car. It was simple, it was clean. It was sort of a tasteful awakening from some of those, like, '58, '59s with the crazy fins.

So, I mean, when Cadillac is at its best, like, in some ways, it's already telling you you've arrived. Like, Cadillac-- I mean, literally, people who don't know cars will still use the expression the Cadillac of. The name itself is so steeped in history, you don't have to try hard. Like, you don't. I mean-- so sometimes, I do think that they, like-- trying to win on the number growing and all these things that don't necessarily matter-- it just feeds to more of their identity crisis.

Whereas I think if you asked me which brand has a more truer sense of itself right now, it's Lincoln, for sure. I mean, you know, I don't have the sales figures in front of me, but like they have good interiors. To your point, James, they will obliterate you with just raw power, you know, from a wide variety of engines-- maybe not wide, but they have a couple. And the interiors-- or the exteriors are OK.

You get over to Cadillac, and it's like the interiors are a mixed bag. They' messed around the V Series, which it's like-- I feel like in some ways, they're really creating a lot of confusion there unnecessarily by not explaining what the tiers of their performance brand are. Because once they let the horses out of the barn, people are, like, well the V series are these, like, detuned things. They want to use V, like, on the crossovers-- what are they doing.

And then Cadillac comes back and they're like, well, actually, no, no, this is the V series now, but we had this Blackwing engine and, like, naming. So it's just been a series of missteps. And yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah, they should have come out with Blackwing first.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: Because, I mean, that's a really great marketing thing. It's easier to remember, oh, Blackwing, that's the cool one, right?

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: As opposed to just adding another letter to the gobbledygook that already exists. And the other thing-- like, OK, Lincoln interiors-- they're not-- like, in terms of like the quality and construction, they're not to like, BMW or Mercedes or Audi or anything. Like, they're still not that like, [INAUDIBLE]. But, like, in terms of the design, meaning the way it looks, and the styling about all the mixtures of materials and, like, the unique colors, especially on Black Label, it looks special.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: I mean, that makes a difference, as opposed to just kind of, like, derivative luxury car, which is kind of what the Cadillac is. Like, it's just not to the same level as the outside. It's--

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: The thing is it's nice enough. But in order to really make a difference, you need to go above and beyond, which is what Lincoln did. Because they need to reacquire people's attention. And unlike Lincoln, Cadillac, as you said-- like, what do you drive? I drive a Cadillac. That sounds cool still to this day, despite all the lame cars they've made over the years. Like, it's still cool.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah, and-- maybe their electric thing, the Lyriq-- apart from the silly spelling of it-- will be something to be excited for.

GREG MIGLIORE: Let me use a sporting analogy that I think you may appreciate. As a native Michigander, I've been a lifelong Red Wings fan. My grandparents actually had season tickets at the Olympia, which is the stadium they played at in the '50s and the '20s, for that matter. James, as some of you may know, is Canadian, and I would assume as a Maple Leafs fan, because I've seen you wearing your white and blue gear quite frequently.

Cadillac right now reminds me of the Montreal Canadiens, a team that has not won the Stanley Cup since 1993, but has the most decorated history of, like, any hockey franchise, ever. Even more than the two teams that we both would put our allegiances to. So that would be my analogy right there-- a team, a brand, a company that at times, has had among the most glittering histories, but at the moment, isn't currently winning. So how's that for an analogy? I don't know.

JAMES RISWICK: I don't know, man, the Leafs have sucked a lot more than the Habs have. So.

GREG MIGLIORE: Well, fair enough.

JAMES RISWICK: So it could be us.

GREG MIGLIORE: All right.

JAMES RISWICK: [LAUGHTER]

GREG MIGLIORE: All right, fair enough. Yeah, I remember the Leafs were good when they had Doug Gilmore and Felix Potvin, but--

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah. Yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: I feel like I was not all that old when that was going on and that was a long time ago.

JAMES RISWICK: That was '93.

GREG MIGLIORE: Geez.

JAMES RISWICK: Actually, the last time that the Habs won the Stanley Cup and the last time a Canadian team won was 1993.

GREG MIGLIORE: '93, the Canadiens. OK.

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah. Well, the Leaves I haven't won the Stanley Cup since '67.

GREG MIGLIORE: OK. Well--

JAMES RISWICK: Not since they expanded from six teams.

GREG MIGLIORE: I was going to say-- Montreal had some good years there in the '70s and the '80s. Toronto-- I guess it's been a little while, but yeah. We can leave it there. We might be losing viewers or listeners. Maybe we're not, I don't know. Every now and then, my favorite thing is when we go on some crazy tangent somebody writes in about the tangent.

It's like, so we've spent 58 minutes breaking down important cars, reveals, the socioeconomic impact and environmental ideas of batteries. But yeah, let's talk about '90s hockey. We'll get a couple emails.

JAMES RISWICK: We got an email about the viability of devoting so much of your cap space to so few players on the current Toronto Maple Leafs. But we should at least talk about the car seat thing.

GREG MIGLIORE: That's actually pretty important. It is National child-- let me just get this right here real quick. It is National Child Passenger Safety Week. So I was boiling it down to something more like car seats, but it's like, if your kids in a thing with wheels that's moving, that's what this week celebrates. And Saturday is National Car Seat Inspection Day. Go ahead, James.

JAMES RISWICK: That's probably going to be a little hard at this time of year. As you mentioned earlier, there's-- you can be certified as a car seat fitment engineer person. I was planning on doing that so I could put car seats into cars and review them and such. But of course, I'm not going to do that at the current moment, because that seems like something that would involve, like, contact with people. So I might delay that for--

GREG MIGLIORE: You don't want to crawl all over strangers cars and--

JAMES RISWICK: No no no no. No no no no no no no-- just for the certification process. I wasn't going to be one of those people, I was going to be certified to review it with some authority.

GREG MIGLIORE: Got it.

JAMES RISWICK: But nevertheless, I am now fitting car seats to two cars because I now have a child in the last month. So I'll be occasionally reviewing stuff like that. Right now just with the infant car seat, I have a Honda Odyssey out front-- this was not planned. This is just a new car that comes out. But of course, the first car I get back-- I get after parental leave is a minivan.

GREG MIGLIORE: They knew it. They, like-- literally, they sniffed it out, they're, like, here you go, old man. Take your minivan.

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah. Yeah. But that one is-- yeah, so you know, the importance of child seats. The one I got was a Chicco car seat. Couldn't have been easier to install the base. Like, seriously, I just kind of winged it the first time before reading the instructions. Then read the instructions and I got it right the first time. So, like, kudos to the designers of these things to actually make them pretty easy to do. I will say, though, I researched which one to do.

And I really encourage people to do that, because there's a lot of really quality reviews out there, people who crash test these things-- Wire Cutter. There's Baby Gear Lab I looked at. You know, they do a really good job of thoroughly testing these things as opposed to just going to target and buying the one that's on sale and oh, look at that feature, yadda yadda. There's so much more about it. I mean, like, that's how I'd buy a car. Like, I'm not just going to walk around to the lot and pick the pretty one. You have to do research.

But especially with these, because you might not see the full breadth of capability, seeing the crash scores. You know, people who, like us, are used to driving multiple cars, they're used to seeing multiple car seats and have some concept of what's better than others. So I really encourage people, if you're in the position, to actually do research about these things. Because although-- you know, with government mandates, they're all safe to a certain degree-- but beyond safety, there's also usability. And, you know, that can make your life so much easier.

I mean, the thing we have, it's so brilliantly engineered-- how quickly you just pop him into the car seat, and just carry him into the car, and click him in. Like, that's it. Like, how quickly it is to get them in and out of the damn house is really brilliant. And it's a well-engineered product. And, you know, maybe something else wouldn't be so well done. So I at least highly encourage people to do research and, you know, maybe even spend a little extra money, because, you know, it's definitely worth it for just making your life easier.

GREG MIGLIORE: It's definitely one purchase where you feel no guilt about being, like, yeah, let's go with the one that's a little bit more, you know? I mean-- it's-- you know, what I would say too is, like, do the research, find the one-- you know, you want to get the ones that have good reviews, obviously. But also, find the one that's right for you. You know, are you going to be taking the car seat in and out of multiple cars? What kind of car do you have? Obviously, how old is your kid-- that sort of thing. And then get it checked out.

I will-- you can look at the [INAUDIBLE] website and they have a nice handy link. You know, we'll try and drop this into the podcast post itself, but you should drop your area code in there, your zip code in, and it shows you a couple of places where you can go to get your car seat checked.

Again, when my son was born-- he's over two now-- but I took it to this car dealer that was, like, the closest one. And the tech just looked it over and she was like, yeah, you got it almost right. I forgot what I did. I did, like, one extra thing that I didn't need to do-- and it's neither here nor there. But most of the seats are relatively simple to get in.

Sometimes, I find her a little tricky to actually get them in right. You know, you're trying to get, like, the level and the angle and, like, you know, all the belts tight and all that sort of thing. And they change, too. The technology changes. I think it's interesting. Like, you know, even people who, like, have kids that are just slightly older, you know, will say, oh wow, yeah, our car seats didn't have that. Or you get that, that's cool. Or hey, you have to turn it this way now, you know? Like, stuff like this changes all the time, so it's definitely worth doing some research.

JAMES RISWICK: I will also say that in terms of, like, looking-- doing all my research for these, you know, buying stuff-- the most expensive stuff is not the highest rated stuff. Like, just because-- just because one costs $700 does not make it better than the one that cost 250. I mean, that's what you're looking at. Some of these things are just like-- like, the luxury of car seats and strollers and things. And it's-- it's often. like, quite clearly looking at these reviews, it's definitely not worth it. It's not the same difference as say, like, a Mercedes E Class and a Hyundai Elantra, you know? Like, it definitely does seem to be more of a gap than we would notice. That goes for strollers, as well.

GREG MIGLIORE: And if you play it right, you can get your, like, car seat to work with your stroller, which is what we did, which worked out pretty nice. It clips right into the stroller, and, you know, that's a good way to do it.

JAMES RISWICK: We bought a different-- I bought a different stroller from a different manufacturer than the child car seat. You can get an adapter. I don't know how the like, perfect car seat systems work. But with this, I mean, it is an added step. You have this-- you have this metal ring, basically, that you have to remove every time. And it's a bit of a pain in the ass, it's an extra step.

Versus just buy the car seat alone or the stroller alone. Just, like, push a button and just immediately, like, pulls it-- it falls into nothing. But that was the downside. But by doing that, it allowed me to get the top-rated car seat and stroller that was, like, the most compact.

GREG MIGLIORE: There you go.

JAMES RISWICK: Be able to fit into the most number of cars. It's a Thule one. Really cool, actually. I'm very impressed by-- it's a new model.

GREG MIGLIORE: We have a City Mini GT for our stroller, which my son--

JAMES RISWICK: Oh, grand touring. Its Grand touring.

GREG MIGLIORE: Grand touring. Yeah, yeah. yeah. it's almost like the European one. He never rides in it.

JAMES RISWICK: Only two doors.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, two doors. It's sportier. It actually has, like, the off road tires, which works pretty nicely when you're trying to cut through into the park. Yeah, I mean, it's interesting. I was swapping car seats, like, all the time, getting him in and out of like press cars. And now with just you working from home, it's like, we just leave his car seat in my wife's car, and that's where he rides, you know? There's not too many reasons to stick him in, like, a McLaren, for example. Nor would he sit in a car with no back seat.

JAMES RISWICK: The nice thing about the infant car seat is that it has the separate base. So I have the base that we'll leave in my wife's car. And then I have-- I bought a second one that I'll just put into whatever press car I had at the time. So that one, I'll have to continuously like fiddle with. But that's also part of the review process for the car, so that's kind of nice. Without-- but therefore, not interfering with my wife's car.

I don't know what I'll do when he graduates to the full on reverse-- the-- the car-- the next car seat. The one that starts off rear-facing and then goes to fronts-- convertible.

GREG MIGLIORE: Convertible car seat.

JAMES RISWICK: Car term. I can't even think of that.

GREG MIGLIORE: Grand touring, convertible, yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah, because that one does not have the base, and you have to remove that, as I'm sure--

GREG MIGLIORE: That's a big pain. I long for the days of the base. The base, boom, it's in, you're done. It's easy. I had a Britax or brit-ex, however you say it, 35 Elite. Literally, that would be like, walked downstars on lunch, in, done, gone. Moving a convertible car seat, even from press cars parked next to each other, is a lot less fun. They're heavy. And, you know, if you're going from a Honda Odyssey, or, like, a Chrysler Pacifica, which is really easy to install a car seat in, to even something like a Ford Explorer that's just higher up and the doors are kind of cut differently-- like, accessibility gets a lot more difficult or less easy, you know?

And that's why I see why minivans are so popular with parents. They're amazing as far as getting your kid and your dog and any other people you're responsible for in and out, just because they're so easy. It's the perfect height.

JAMES RISWICK: I mean, one of the things I'm going to do-- and one of the things I couldn't find when I was researching was the actual like-- OK, so they talked about the car seat. But they didn't really talk about putting the car seat in different cars. Meaning, like, I can now-- I can actually drive putting the car seat in the middle. But I couldn't drive my car if I put it behind me.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: I would not-- meaning my Audi All Road, which is effectively an Audi A4. I couldn't drive that. And then there are cars that if you put them behind one parent-- like, the passenger seat is super far forward. Like, you have to origami yourself into the front. And that's one thing where, like, those subcompact SUVs aren't very good, because there's just not a lot of space in between the two rows.

So that information, I really strong-- I could not find like any information about that. I'm tall. The seats go in far back. So I was really worried that, like, I wouldn't be able to drive our own car around with him in the car. I'll see the with the convertible seat if that's different. But that's one thing going forward I will be testing to kind of put some-- basically, a gift to tall parents out there who might struggle to know, like, will this car seat work with my car or will this car I'm about to buy work with my car seat.

GREG MIGLIORE: That's a good point.

JAMES RISWICK: Or really, bring the damn car seat on a test drive.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yes, for sure.

JAMES RISWICK: Do that. You know--

GREG MIGLIORE: You have to do that, especially if you're talking, like, the bigger car seats like the convertibles. Like, because, I mean, kids are in car seats for a while now, you know? And you're conceivably going to have that car for a while. Absolutely.

JAMES RISWICK: Bring your stroller, too. Bring whatever on a test drive. And oh-- OK, so here's another thing as kind of an aside. They'll just bring me cars to test drive now.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah.

JAMES RISWICK: Like, this is one-- this is one rare good thing about all this crap. Is that, like, cars will-- they'll deliver you cars. And they-- like, I went car shopping with my dad this weekend, and they just gave us the car. We signed like a loan agreement like we do with one of our press cars. And so they just let us-- so to that point, you can, like-- now someone will drop off a car at your house. You can put whatever the hell you wanted it to make sure it works. So that's really cool. Everybody should know that you can do that.

GREG MIGLIORE: See if it fits in your garage, you know, that sort of thing.

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah.

GREG MIGLIORE: Sounds good. All right. Well, we start out with the M3 and the M4 and we're ending with car seats. So I feel like we've really blitzed the spectrum as far as life moments. All the different things you might want. I think we could leave it there. Anything else going on in your life there, James?

JAMES RISWICK: No. Just remember, everybody-- yuck.

GREG MIGLIORE: There you go. Design analysis. He's our new design editor. Do you remember-- I don't know if you ever read "Automobile" all that much. Robert Cumberford was the design editor for years. Can you imagine if one of his columns just said yuck at the front and that was it?

JAMES RISWICK: Yeah, you know, that's great. That's just just like, yuck, and then white space.

GREG MIGLIORE: White space.

JAMES RISWICK: That would be great. Why not, you know?

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. All right. Well, we could leave it there. Thanks for listening this week, everybody. Again, be sure to get your car seats checked out and of course, be sure to strap your kids in safely, all that good stuff. Enjoy the weekend. It is officially fall. We'll see you next week.

[MUSIC PLAYING]

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