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Car Stuff Podcast


Whether you drive a car, need a car, or just occasionally bum a ride with friends, you’ve come to the right place. Join the editors of Consumer Guide Automotive as they break down everything that’s going on in the auto world. New-car reviews, shopping tips, driving green, electric cars, classic cars, and plenty of great guests. This is the Consumer Guide Car Stuff Podcast.


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Whether you drive a car, need a car, or just occasionally bum a ride with friends, you’ve come to the right place. Join the editors of Consumer Guide Automotive as they break down everything that’s going on in the auto world. New-car reviews, shopping tips, driving green, electric cars, classic cars, and plenty of great guests. This is the Consumer Guide Car Stuff Podcast.




Public Charging Disaster, Hyundai and Amazon Deal

Jill and Tom opened the show discussing the best things they ate Thanksgiving Day. After a shoutout to a regular listener who would like the Car Stuff Podcast back on broadcast radio, the hosts turned their attention to Jill’s holiday-week experience attempting to travel to and from Chicago and Indianapolis in an electric vehicle. While the car performed well, Jill lamented the lack of charging opportunities along that route, and was frustrated by the long wait to charge at the single level-3 public charger along the way. In the second segment, the hosts welcome Ed Kim, president of AutoPacfic, to the program. Ed weighed in on the recently announced Hyundai/ deal, by which customers will soon be able to order their Hyundai vehicles on the Amazon website. Ed also cleared up some misconceptions about the growing EV supplies, and Tesla’s recent price cuts. In the third segment Jill is subjected to Tom’s “Cyber Monday Auto Gifts” quiz. Jill also shared her impressions of the recently redesigned Toyota Prius Limited AWD.


North American Car of the Year Finalists, Los Angeles Auto Show Recap, Donating Your Car to Charity

Jill and Tom crammed a lot into this episode of the Car Stuff Podcast. Tom noted that he’s eating better because his grad-school daughter is home this week. Jill and Tom also discussed Jill’s lack of interest in corn-based Thanksgiving dishes. Jill ran down this year’s North American Car of the Year finalists in the Car, Truck, and Utility categories. The hosts also answered a listener question about compact crossovers. In the second segment Jill and Tom welcome Colin Weatherwax of Cars for Kids ( to the program. Colin walked the hosts through the auto-donation process, and talked about the benefits of donating a vehicle to charity. Colin noted that motorcycles and boats can also be donated. Note: There is still time to make a donation this year. Jill is subjected to Tom’s “Plymouth or Pennsylvania” quiz in the third segment, which features a Martha Stewart-related Thanksgiving bonus question. Jill and Tom wrapped up the show up by discussing the hybrid-only 2025 Toyota Camry, and Tom’s review of the 2023 Toyota Crown.


Favorite Automotive Tech Features, Mustang Dark Horse, Dealership Hacking Risks

Jill and Tom opened the show examining Jill’s irrational dislike of filled donuts—even jelly filled. Tom stayed off topic for a moment, noting that Google was placing surprisingly racy ads on the Consumer Guide website, including one ad for something called, “Naughty Wedding Photos.” The hosts got serious and talked about a casual poll Tom conducted on Twitter/X to determine drivers’ favorite automotive tech features. The list is very interesting. The conversation moved on to Volvo’s new electric EM90 minivan, about which there is good news and bad. The Conversation turned to the new top-tier Mustang trim level: Dark Horse. Jill recently spent a week behind the wheel of the high-performance Ford, and shares her take. In the second segment, Jill and Tom are joined by CDK Global Senior Product Manager Brenda Lynch. Brenda shared the topline results of a CDK study looking into auto-dealership vulnerability to hacking and malware. Is your personal data safe at your local dealer? Listen to this conversation. In the last segment Jill is subjected to Tom’s “Under $48,000” quiz. Because Tom did a poor job managing the clock this episode, the hosts got in a brief chat about pay raises at U.S. Toyota, Volkswagen, and Hyundai/Kia plants, all of which are certainly steps taken to prevent unionization of their factories.


VinFast Regroups, Volvo EX30 is a Bargain, and EV Enthusiasts are a Complex Lot

Hosts Jill and Tom opened the show discussing an error on last week’s quiz. As it turns out, poutine is available at McDonald’s locations in Canada. Tom subsequently promoted his regular appearances on the Steve and Johnnie Show heard Saturday evenings on WGN Radio in Chicago. Tom is especially excited that he has been asked to select the bumper music played during his visits. The Conversation turned to Vietnamese EV startup VinFast, which is moving away from a direct-to-customer marketing network to a traditional franchise-dealer arrangement. Tom also mentioned his Twitter/X battle with Tesla fans that took exception to his thoughts on the Cybertruck’s wheel design. Jill shared her preview review of the all-new Volvo EX30 EV, which offers impressive battery range, and is surprisingly affordable. In the second segment, Chad Kirchner of EV Pulse joined the show. Chad talked about the nature of EV enthusiasts, and how the group is not limited to just environmentalists. Chad also shared his take on the state of Tesla, and VinFast’s prospects for success. Jill is subjected to Tom’s “Fake Color!” quiz in the last segment, including a Rolling Stones album-title bonus question.


Silverado EV, UAW Strike, Electric Vehicle Demand

ill returns to the studio for a topic-packed episode. In the first segment Jill recounts for Tom the highpoints of her recent participation in the Rebelle Rally. Tom is impressed that Jill sustained no serious injuries. Jill also gave an update on the North American Car of the Year (NACTOY) voting process. NACTOY finalists should be announced during the Los Angeles Auto Show. Jill also spent some time with the all-new Chevrolet Silverado EV. Jill came away generally impressed, and noted that the truck’s key selling point is battery range. Tom discussed briefly the Mazda Iconic SP concept car, seen at the Toyota Motor Show, which may be a harbinger of the next generation of the MX-5 Miata. In the second segment Jill and Tom welcome Sam Fiorani of AutoForecast Solutions to the show. Sam shared his thoughts on a number of topics including the UAW Strike, the UAW’s inability to unionize transplant automakers, the state of the EV market, and why Tesla is cutting prices so dramatically. Sam also talked about his new webcast—found on YouTube—called “Afternoons! with Kendra and Sam.” In the last segment Jill is subjected to Tom’s “Honda or Hallmark” quiz, and Tom talked about another Tokyo Motor Show reveal, the Honda Prelude Concept. The McDonald’s Canadian menu also came up.


Understanding the EV Supply Glut, The Care and Feeding of a Ford Model A

Bredan Appel of the Sons of Speed sat in for co-host Jill this week. Jill returns next episode. In the first segment Brendan talked about the redesigned 2024 Hyundai Kona, a video review for which will be shared shortly. Brendan and Tom went on to talk about the growing glut of unsold EVs in the U.S., and the impact of massive Tesla price cuts on EV sales. Are there too many EV models on the market? Listen in. In the second segment the hosts welcome Shooting Cars host and producer Zack Pradel to the show. Zack’s popular YouTube channel features new-, used-, and classic-car reviews. Zack talked about the care and feeding of his family’s classic car, a 1931 Ford Model A. As an aside, Zack also noted his position on the rotary-dial-controlled infotainment system found in current-generation Mazda vehicles. In the final segment, Zack and Brendan are subjected to Tom’s “Octane, Yo!” quiz.


UAW Strike Update, Best and Worst Cars We've Owned, Genesis Connected Services

Jill is out this week; you can follow her progress at the 2023 Rebelle Rally by clicking on the link on our Facebook page. In studio for the entire show are Chicago late-night radio legends Steve King and Johnnie Putman. The show opened with Steve explaining the concept of “clear-channel” radio, and why WGN radio in Chicago is heard, at night, in almost 40 U.S. states and in Canada. After a quick chat about the classic films The Desk Set, and Fritz Lang’s epic Metropolis, Tom, Steve and Johnnie discussed the ongoing UAW strike, and comments made Monday by Ford Executive Chairman Bill Ford. We also learned from Steve what a “seat cover” is in CB-radio parlance. In the second segment Steve and Johnnie talked about their best and worst car ownership experiences. Tom also noted the love/hate relationship he had with a 1991 Saab 9000 CD. In the third segment Steve and Johnnie are subjected to Tom’s “1990!” quiz. Steve and Johnie wrapped up the show sharing some good news about Genesis Connected Services.


Lexus RC F on the Track, EV Startups and the Dealer Franchise System

Tom and guest-host Paul Herrold of the Sons of Speed opened the show discussing the Lexus RC F, a V8-powered small coupe that Paul recently spent track time with. Paul noted that though the RC F has grown dated since its 2014 introduction, the car is very capable on the street and on the track. Listen to hear Paul’s complete review. Tom and Paul also discussed technological “fads” that were introduced by automakers to great fanfare, but since amounted to little in the market place. In the second segment Tom and Paul welcome Dave Sloan of the Chicago Automobile Trade Association. Dave shared his thoughts on a number of topics, including the UAW strike, EV startup carmakers working outside the franchise dealer system, and dealership acquisitions by large, national corporations. Dave joined Paul for this week’s “Whose Brand is it Anyway” quiz.


Bargain Jeep Grand Cherokee, Future Car Features, Fake Car Colors

Jill and Tom opened a busy show by discussing ways that Tom might exploit Jill’s would-be celebrity to expand the popularity of the show. The hosts went on to review the 2023 Jeep Grand Cherokee Altitude, which both agreed feels like a pretty strong value. Jill and Tom opened the second segment by welcoming Robby Degraff of AutoPacific to the program. Robby shared the findings of AutoPacific’s Future Attribute Demand Study (FADS). Robby walked the hosts down the top-ten list of features car shoppers are expected to want on vehicles purchased in the near future, including a very-cool autonomous-driving safety feature. Robby also shared some insights into the Fisker Ocean, a small electric crossover from EV startup Fisker, which he spent some time driving recently. Delivery of the Fisker Ocean has begun in parts of the U.S., though initial volumes are low. Jill is subjected to Tom’s “Car Color or Pop Song” quiz, which wrapped up with a Star Trek bonus question.


EV Charging Levels Basics (Bonus Episode)

In this ten-minute bonus episode, Jill and Tom break down the basics of electric-vehicle charging. The hosts discuss level-1 (wall-outlet), level-2 (home), and level-3 (public, DC) charging. Here's what you need to know before you start shopping for an electric vehicle. Remember to subscribe and to review the show wherever you download your podcasts. Also, leave us a comment on the Car Stuff Podcast Facebook page.


Jeep News, Kia EV9 Review, and the Folly of Ethanol

Jill and Tom opened the showing quickly covering a number of topics including the demise of the Jeep Grand Cherokee V8 engine, the addition of a lower-priced base model to the Jeep Wagoneer lineup, and Tom’s love/hate relationship with the newly updated 2024 Volkswagen Atlas midsize crossover. Jill reviewed the all-new Kia EV9 all-electric 3-row crossover, about which she has much good to share. Also, Tom is being shocked (actual electric shock) by accidentally touching McDonald’s employees at the drive-thru. Strange? The hosts are joined in the second segment by Green Sense Radio host Robert Colangelo. Jill, Tom, and Robert discussed the strange sociopolitical forces at work keeping ethanol in America’s gasoline. The discussion covered the benefits of ethanol, and the many drawbacks, including compromised food security. Robert also briefly discussed a future Green Sense podcast dealing with early climate-change research which went unreported by petroleum producers. How will you do on this week’s quiz? Jill did very well, until the Kellog’s-related bonus question. Remember to follow the Car Stuff Podcast on Facebook to keep up to date on new episodes, and find links to the stories being covered.


Detroit Auto Show, Hyundai Kona, Discontinued Models

Jill and Tom are joined this week by long-time cohost Damon Bell, who is currently serving as Senior Research Editor at Jill and Tom opened the show arguing about the two-screen dashboard found in the current Infiniti QX50 compact crossover. Jill finds the systems dated, while Tom saw the value in having a single screen dedicated to navigation functions. Damon joined the conversation to help summarize the reveals seen at this year’s Detroit Auto Show. Jill, who was in attendance at the event, noted that the press activity was especially light, as was media attendance. The trio covered the reveals of the freshened Cadillac CT5, Ford F-150, Jeep Gladiator, and all-new GMC Acadia. In the second segment Damon reviewed the all-new Hyundai Kona small crossover, noting that the vehicle has gotten larger on the outside, and roomier on the inside. Jill, Damon, and Tom went on to wrap up their “Dead Pool” lists created in way back August of 2021. There is some question as to who did the best job picking vehicles which were soon to be discontinued. Jill and Damon were subjected to Tom’s “Lancia or Listeria” quiz, which—big surprise—was decided by a question about gophers.


Loving the Nissan Ariya, Dealerships Embrace ChatGPT, Driving the Alfa Romeo Tonale

Jill and Tom opened the episode talking a little about the Detroit Auto Show which opens this week. The hosts will have complete coverage of the event next week. Tom complained a little about the Infiniti QX50 premium compact crossover. Though Tom generally likes the vehicle, he is annoyed that its much-promote high-tech VC-Turbo engine has not imbued the crossover with either standout power, or impressive fuel economy. Jill and Tom went on to review the 2023 Nissan Ariya compact electric crossover which both hosts basically love. Jill is annoyed that Nissan has done little to promoted the vehicle, which Tom suggests is part of the plan, and that Nissan may not yet be ready to deliver the Ariya in serious volume, and that stepped-up advertising is on hold for now. The duo welcome Ken Chester of the Tech Mobility Show in the second segment. Ken walked Tom and Jill through the adoption of ChatGPT by automotive dealers, and how the technology can be used, and misused, in that application. In the third segment Jill is subjected to Tom’s “Fun Car Engine” quiz. Jill and Tom wrapped up the show discussing the all-new Alfa Romeo Tonale small crossover, which Jill is driving this week.


GMC Sierra Denali Ultimate, UAW Plays Hardball, Chinese Cars Go West

Jill and Tom are both in studio this week. Jill talked a little about why she’s been away from the show, including a quick summary of the vehicles she’s recently seen and her time preparing for this year’s Rebelle Rally. Jill talked about her test drive of the 2024 GMC Denali 2500 Ultimate, a super-premium trim-level addition to the maker’s pickup-truck lineup. Tom talked briefly about the Fisker Alaska, an electric midsize pickup due for the 2025 model year. In the second segment the crew is joined by Sam Fiorani of AutoForecast Solutions. Sam walked Jill and Tom through a number of topics, including the UAW/Detroit 3 labor-contract negotiations, Chinese cars being exported to the West, and the Radnor Hunt Concours auto show running from September 8-10 in Malvern, Pennsylvania. Jill is subjected to Tom’s “Chevrolet or Oldsmobile” quiz in segment three.


Comeback of the Manual Transmission, All-New Lincoln Nautilus

Brendan Appel sits in for Jill this week, and discussed a pair of articles he wrote regarding the survival of the manual transmission. Brendan argues that carmakers have hastened the demise of stick shift by limiting availability and underestimating demand. Brendan notes the surprising popularity of stick shift on a number of new sporty offerings. In the second segment Brendan and Tom welcome Monica Gorgas, brand manager for the redesigned Lincoln Nautilus midsize crossover. Monica walked the hosts through the changes to the premium crossover, including Tom’s favorite: Digital Scenting. The new Nautilus goes on sale early next year. Brendan is subjected to Tom’s “Cars of 1980” quiz, including a bonus question regarding bad movies, such as Spanglish and Star Trek: The Motion Picture.


Mustang GTD, Corvette Legacy and the Future of Chevy's Sports Car

Tom and guest co-host Brendan Appel of the Sons of Speed open the show discussing the recently revealed Mustang GTD, an extreme performance version of Ford’s popular pony car. Brendan lamented the fact that, despite rumors to the contrary, the GTD is not a mid-engine car. The hosts went on to discuss an article just posted to the Consumer Guide Daily Drive Blog in which Tom attempts to correct common mispronunciations of car and car-brand names. In the second segment Tom and Brendan welcome Steve Garrett to the podcast. Steve is president of the Corvette Club of Kansas City (CCKC) and host of the popular Corvette Today podcast. Steve walked the hosts through a number of Corvette news items, including the recently introduced Z06, and the coming E-Ray hybrid ‘Vette. Steve also shared his thoughts on the rumored Corvette crossover. In the last segment, Brendan is subjected to a brutal Mercedes-Benz model quiz.


Goodbye Nissan Titan, Hello Hyundai Santa Fe, Accessorizing a Pickup Truck

This week Tim Esterdahl of Pickup Truck Plus SUV Talk subs for Tom who is still under the weather. Jill and Tim open the show by discussing the demise of the Titan, Nissan’s ill-fated and slow-selling large pickup truck. The conversation extended to the likelihood of Toyota bringing a small pickup truck to the U.S. to compete with Ford’s popular Maverick. Jill shared her thoughts on the radically redesigned Hyundai Santa Fe, which is due to arrive in showrooms next year. In the second segment Tim talked about his recent experiences modifying his own pickup. Tim has made a number of updates to his truck, most of which he installed himself. In the third segment Tim is subjected to Jill’s light-duty-truck quiz.


New Toyota Land Cruiser, Used EV Prices Plummet

Jill and guest cohost Nicole Wakelin, host of the Road Reflected podcast, opened the show talking about “sad snacks,” with Nicole arguing that most healthy and/or gluten-free treats aren’t worth the effort. Jill shared the news that industry colleague, and one-time Road America public-relations manager, Enrique Ramirez lost his battle with cancer. Enrique worked tirelessly to raise money for cancer research. The hosts went on to discuss the resurrection of the Toyota Land Cruiser, which returns soon to U.S. dealerships after a three-year hiatus. They took note of the new vehicle’s blocky design, and discussed the truck’s considerable cult following. In the second segment, Jill and Nicole are joined by Executive Analyst Karl Brauer. Karl shared research conducted by iSeeCars finding that used-electric-vehicle prices had plunged in the past year. Doe Karl think this is a good time to invest in a used EV? Listen in. Jill subjected Nicole to a “basic” car-history quiz in the last segment, including a bonus question about Italian ice. Note: Tom is taking some time off this week.


Lexus LS 500h, Corvette Crossover, and the Volvo EX30

Sitting in again for Jill is Paul Herrold of the Sons of Speed. Jill returns next week. Paul and Tom began the show correcting mistakes made last week. Both hosts were guilty of misstatements which have been begrudgingly corrected. Tom followed up on last week’s podcast, which included an interview with Don Drucker of Chicago’s famous Superdawg Drive-In. Having learned that the establishment’s tamales are meat free—and he being vegetarian—Tom sampled the tamales. Listen to his review. Paul talked about paint-protection film (PPF), and why someone might want to consider having their car treated. Paul recently had his car protected, and is a believer in the process, though it can be pricey. Tom talked briefly about the 2023 Lexus LS 500h, which he recently reviewed. Though the car is not especially space efficient, and a little difficult to get in and out of, Tom is generally a fan of the large luxury sedan. Paul and Tom welcome Sam Fiorani of AutoForecast Solutions to the show in the second segment. Sam talked about his new podcast (find the link on Car Stuff Podcast Facebook page). Sam walked the hosts through a number of topics, including the realities of a Corvette crossover, automakers developing their own charging network, and why the new Volvo EX30 electric crossover is so affordable. Paul was then subjected to Tom’s color quiz. Did Paul win? Listen in.


Driving the Maserati MC20, Car Culture and Chicago's Legendary Superdawg Drive-In

This week Paul Herrold of the Sons of Speed sits in for Jill. In the first segment, Paul shared the details of his recent trip to Italy which included a visit to the Maserati factory, and a test drive of the brand’s exotic MC20 sports car. Paul and Tom also discussed recent cuts to the price of Ford’s electric F-150 Lightning pickup truck. In the second segment Paul and Tom welcomed Don Drucker, Operations Manager of Chicago’s legendary Superdawg drive-in restaurant to the Car Stuff Podcast. Don shared the institution’s history, and talked about late-night car culture. Superdawg celebrates its 75th anniversary this year. Paul is subjected to Tom’s “Which Costs More?” quiz in the final segment, and Tom talked a little about driving an affordable base-trim Jeep Grand Cherokee L.