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The automobile in question | The Press



Our collaborator answers questions from readers

The alphabet in a box

The mechanism for changing gears on both a manual and an automatic has been around for over a century. Have the inscriptions to designate front, rear, neutral, etc. always existed? Initially in America, was it like today with the letters DRNL? Given that there have also been cars in France for more than a century, have the designations of the gears had and still have a French designation? Are the dashboards in France (on Citroën, Renault and Peugeot) in French unlike us?

Roger G.

Do not forget the P (Park). As strange as it may seem, it was not until January 26, 1965 that American legislators put order in this nomenclature by imposing a standard for the identification and order of reports (PRNDL) associated with a box automatique. The regulations went into effect on April 26, 1966, and apply to all vehicles sold in the United States. As for the French manufacturers, by consulting certain photographic archives, Renault for example used the letter A (Avant?) and not D (Drive) on its rare models with automatic transmission in the 1950s.



Nissan Altima

I remember my father who, every Sunday, polished the chrome of his Ford Meteor. A little backward, but also of my time. SUVs don’t inspire me. I’m interested in a 2022 Nissan Altima sedan. It’s significantly less expensive than the majority of other all-wheel-drive models. How does its traction system compare to those of other vehicles on the market? Is it a good choice for its winter qualities?

John R.

In this category, the choice is not huge. Nissan’s all-wheel drive is more efficient than that offered by Toyota (Camry), but less efficient than that offered by Subaru (Legacy). That said, this model is a very good choice in its category and for dealing with winter conditions.

We drive a lot


Toyota Corolla Hybrid

I have a 2011 Hyundai Touring bought new that is now over 335,000 miles. I resign myself to change. I live in the region and I travel about 30,000 km/year. I would like to buy a hybrid or electric vehicle. Given the delivery times, I’m crossing my fingers and hoping that my old kitty won’t need a major repair. I haven’t ordered anything yet, I’m looking at the Toyota Corolla or Prius or the Hyundai Ioniq. Should I fall back on a used gas-powered car while waiting for better availability at dealerships? Does it exist, a used hybrid or electric?

Isabelle J.

Yes, there are hybrid and electric vehicles on the used market. And like a combustion engine vehicle, a proper inspection is essential before making the purchase. The Corolla Hybrid is good, but the Corolla Cross Hybrid will undoubtedly be better. This will allow you to obtain a versatility substantially equivalent to that of your current vehicle, if, of course, this criterion is still valid.

Lack of interest ?


Toyota bZ4X

Can you tell me what about the Toyota Prius 2023, which should be completely renewed, according to what I have read on the internet? I left a deposit at a few dealerships to get one. With such enthusiasm for the bZ4X, one wonders if Toyota lacks the time, energy, labor or materials to proudly present the new Prius. Does this silence hide a lack of interest suggesting that it will finally arrive botched?

Dennis C.

The new Prius will be unveiled shortly. We had the privilege of seeing her already. The only thing we can say is that it no longer looks like a spacecraft.

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