Disney World trip with the 2016 Mazda CX-5

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This year, we were fortunate enough to be able to take the kids to their first Disney World trip in Florida. I worked with Drive Shop to test out the 2016 Mazda CX-5 for the week while there because we needed something reliable. It definitely did not disappoint!

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The color was excellent for the extreme heat. Glacier White with light beige interior. Perfect to keep the car cool when the sun is beaming down.

 

This crossover SUV fits 5 comfortably and had such a smooth ride. The stylish exterior and interior made driving it around south Florida so much fun. We stayed in Palm Bay which is more on the east coast and had to travel an hour and a half to Disney World in Orlando. The SkyActive technology by Mazda made the gas last the entire week even with the long trips.

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The cruise control came in handy during the long trip on the same road and it had a feature I’ve never seen before. It was a car length sensor that you can set the cruise control to keep the car one, two, or three car lengths behind the car in front of you.

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The center console is where the radio controls are as well as the volume and mute. This system has no power off button, only mute. The large center button is a toggle button. It controls the LCD panel for everything. You can also use the touch screen feature, but when driving the center button is easier to navigate everything.

There is a “sport” button that allows you to easily flip the car into sport mode if you’re on the highway and want to feel some extra “umf”!

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The number one thing is it got us to and from Disney safely! There was a little rain storm on the way there and it drove great in it. One of the best features is when I had to use the brights, it has an “auto” sensor when on the auto feature. This allowed the car to automatically turn the high beams off when there was a vehicle coming, and back on when it passed. I haven’t seen that function on any other vehicle yet.

We had a blast at Disney World and a big thank you to Mazda and DriveShop for providing this vehicle for our travels around south Florida!

 

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2016 Kia Sorento SXL V6 AWD Review

2016 Kia Sorento SXL V6 AWD

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I had the opportunity this first week of April to check out the 2016 Kia Sorento SXL in Platinum Graphite thanks for DriveShop. I always love doing car reviews because seeing all of the different options available as they come out makes it really easy for me to choose a car that is right for my family. Sometimes you see a vehicle that looks really beautiful, but then you test drive it, and end up disappointed. Luckily, for anyone looking to get a Kia Sorento for their family, this is not one of the disappointments in my opinion.

Check out my initial reaction when I got the keys for the first time.

If you’ve seen any of my other vehicle reviews, you probably already know that my favorite part is the panoramic moon roof. It just adds so much life to the interior. I usually leave it open everyday to keep the inside feeling bright and big. There is nothing saying you need to keep your moon roof closed and have the car looking dark inside! I do the same with my personal car although there isn’t an awesome panoramic style moon roof in it.

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Do you see how bright it is in the car? Look at all of that natural lighting! You can do your own photo shoot in the car.

The interior in this model is black nappa leather trim and ivory. Immediately after getting into this car, I was in love with how luxurious it looks and feels inside. The seats were so soft and cozy and the front AND middle seats all offer the controlled heated seat option with the front also offering air conditioned seats which is lux-urious! The steering wheel has a heated option as well which is great.

 

You can tell the difference in lighting when the moon roof is closed. Do yourself a favor, keep it open!

The way this car drove was amazing. The 6 cylinders gave great pick up and the car drove smoothly and very comfortably. The new age systems inside were a little difficult to navigate as far as all of the options available, but I am sure if I had longer then 1 week with the vehicle an actually read the manual I’d have it all down to a science.

The back up camera in this model is very efficient. It took a little getting used to, but it has an ACTUAL camera view on the top of the car that allows you to not only see the back of your vehicle like most, but also the front and sides. It gives you multiple camera options too depending on where you want to look. The car monitors and beeps at you to let you know if anything is in your path.

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My one complaint with this car, and again, I did not read the manual, but I couldn’t figure it out if it is an actual option, is that I cannot control the rear heat/AC. The 3rd row has the option for the passenger to control the heat/AC back there which is great… but who usually sits in the 3rd row? Kids rights? I don’t want them controlling their own heating and cooling without me having the option to “fix” it while I am driving on the highway. I can foresee numerous fights ensuing over it which a parent is stuck listening to it without the option to fix it without stopping or pulling over. That is something that would bug me if I was the owner of this 3rd row SUV.

The trunk space is really, really tiny and it is expected with the compactness of this vehicle. But when I say small.. I mean really small. It barely fit an umbrella stroller in it when I took some friends for a play date to the local mall an utilized the 3rd row. But hey, take the good with the bad right? The inside was cozy and spacious even with the 3rd row up. Also, the trunk has a good amount of space when the 3rd row is down.

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For the price of this specific model with all of the options, I think it’s a little high for a KIA in particular with a price tag of $46k, but this is fully loaded. I say for a KIA because before these models recently, KIA was seen as a cheaply made vehicle at an affordable price. It isn’t the case anymore as they’ve stepped it up a lot, but the resale value is currently not great on a KIA at the moment. As far as the interior that I was so excited about, the nappa leather seats leave a little to be desired because although they look beautiful and I’d probably pay extra to have them, they seem like they’d rip or tear easily for like “pleather” instead of real leather which is thicker. Here is the window sticker of this exact model with all of the options I spoke about;

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19MPG avg is a little lower then I’d expect for a smaller SUV such as the Kia Sorento.

Here’s some more look into the details. Look at the gas and break, they look like straight out of a race car!

Overall, we had a great time with this car for the week. It proved to be able to take on a ny task we had for it, including BOYS! My son was trying to participate in the vlogging review of the car and he was able to stand straight up in the back which was cool for him.

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Review of the 2016 Mazda 6

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This past week I had the privilege of testing out the Mazda 6 Grand Touring from DriveShop. That gave me something else to be thankful for during the Thanksgiving week!

This beautiful deep red color I had is called “Soul Red”. I was never a big red car person. I mean, they’re nice, but I usually go for the black or beige colors. Wow. Wow is all I can say. I felt so luxurious and stylish driving around in this beautiful red car. I had so many compliments on it everywhere I went. It is for sure a show stopper.

Surprisingly affordable, the Starting MSRP for this model is $21,495. The navigation system and sirius satallite radio come standard in this vehicle at no extra charge which is a bonus!

Mileage is 28city/40 hwy which is what you’d expect from a sedan.12359812_10208066777047744_1874810296_o

The inside of this one is not far behind the luxury of the outside. In fact its right on par. Having a family of 4, and both kids being in car & booster seats, space is always a number one concern. That is the reason I went to a “mom mobile” aka an SUV sometime back. The Mazda 6 was shockingly roomy an fir us all with room to spare. The boys loved it an called it “The red car”. I thought my 3 year old was literally going to cry when I had to give it back! There was a small sunroof that made it feel that much more open and let some extra light in. It was cold an the heated seat feature got a lot of use! The interior color in this model is Black/Espresso. The black makes it easy to hide dirt generated from little boys! LOL!

Did I mention that the driver seat has a memory button that remembers just how you like your seat? Two of them to be exact. How convenient because I hate getting in the car after my husband has the seat pushed all the way back and I can’t reach the pedals! Pushing 1 or 2 lets the seat do all of the work to get it back to exactly how I like it, and quickly.

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The trunk space is another thing that shocked me. It fits almost as much as my Mazda CX-7 does and that’s an SUV. It isn’t too high, but the depth of it makes you actually have to step back and figure out how it goes back so far!

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The active driving display, or as I like to call it, the futuristic dashboard is one of the features that makes the Mazda 6 one of the top rated safety vehicles of 2015. It has something I haven’t seen before, which is the ability to tell you when you’re riding far enough away from the car in front of you. It’s funny because that is one of the things my husband always criticized about my driving. He says I tailgate the cars in front of me often… I don’t agree, but this feature sure helps me be mindful of how far back I should be to be at a safe distance. The other safety features are the back up camera, the blind spot alert on the side view mirrors, and the drifting lane alert. It’s a little hard to see in a photo because it’s through a glass, but here is the active driving display showing some of what I covered above.

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After having this vehicle for a week during the holidays, it really made me think about how I’d love to have this vehicle even though it is a sedan. I do miss it, as do my kids. It is certainly a contender in any of our choices for a sedan in the future if we decide to go that route. Mazda has outdone itself again!

The warranty it comes with is 36 month/36,000 miles bumper to bumper. 60 month/60,000 mile powertrain warrantly.

#ZoomZoom!

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The Beautiful 2015 Hyundai Sante Fe Limited Edition, Chuggington, Tball, & NY Baby Show

2015 Hyundai Sante Fe Limited Edition AWD

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I was so excited when I heard I would be testing out the all new 2015 Hyundai Sante Fe in the Limited Edition with All Wheel Drive. It was fully loaded and had so much to offer a family of 4 like mine.

Thanks to the 411 Mommas and Drive Shop for making this review possible.

I LOVE being able to be a guest on the 411 Mommas!

Check out my Video Review on The411Mommas.com or below;

How nice is this vehicle? I mean, seriously, the color is so luxurious, as is the inside. I felt so proud driving this around town and it made me want to seriously consider buying one for my next family SUV. It is a little bigger then what I am used to, but it handled so well that wasn’t an issue at all.

Some of the features that I really loved were the safety features. Like the blind spot monitor which alerts you by beeping or lighting up whenever someone is in your blind spot. How it works, is the car senses when another vehicle is on the side of your car. If you’re driving on the highway, the light will just illuminate as the cars drive by. Right when you put your blinker on to get over (depending on the direction your going) it will beep if there is a vehicle in you blind spot on the side where you’re trying to go.

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Talk about luxury, this baby has heated AND air conditioned seats as well as a heated steering wheel option. The steering wheel sensitivity can also be changed based on what you’re most comfortable with. The frosted mocha color is the one I had, and I have to say it was beautiful! The interior felt so clean with the light wood grain and beige and black seats.

The 3rd row seats have their own controls for heating and air conditioning which is excellent. Any time you have a large SUV, it’s always an issue controlling the temperature throughout the entire vehicle. The back usually has a vent, but not it’s own temperature controls, so that was great. There is also a 12V socket that you can plug into in the trunk as well which is neat. You can blow dry your hair in the trunk of your car in desperate situations! Haha!

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The over-sized moon roof extends all the way to the 3rd row seating and would make a great “camp out” for kids in the summer to watch the stars with the AC on and maybe a pillow and blanket. There isn’t only a moon roof. The front portion of the glass is actually a sun roof. You can choose to have that open fully, just a tad, or not at all.

I didn’t have to use the 3rd row seating this time, because it was only the 4 of us in the vehicle this week, so I kept the 3rd row seats down the whole week. When I tell you there is a ton of room, that is almost an understatement. I fit my sons stroller back there, and 2 giant bags of laundry and I still had room for about 3 times that back there. The back seats were split apart, which I loved because you don’t have to lower a rear seat to get to the 3rd row. That was always a turn off for me in other 3rd row seating vehicles because I have 2 kids in car seats. So it was a hassle to pull down the seat for someone to climb back there and again when they get out. It also just made the vehicle feel so open and fresh.

This option had tinted windows, which helped keep it cooler inside. Even though the tinted windows kept most of the sun out of my kids eyes, it was nice to have the visors built in to give that extra sun block. My 2 year old seems to always have the sun-facing seat and complains during most family trips in our current vehicle but he did not complain at all in this one!

I am so in love with this SUV, that even though the gas mileage is 19 MPG and about 10 MPG less the my current vehicle, I don’t even mind. It is so worth the extra gas money to have the added safety and convenience to me. Plus, I started with a full tank, and drove it to and from work each day, and I didn’t even need to put gas in it the entire week. So for my personal use, it was fine and not a gas guzzler.

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I hope you get a chance to check out this car, you will not be let down!

Spring Break Vlog & DriveShop 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander Review

2015 Mitsubishi Outlander SE – The 411 Mommas

Check out the Video of our visit to Michigan for Spring Break via the 411 Mommas;

My family and I took a vacation to Michigan to visit family this past week. I was lucky enough to hook up with DriveSTI via the 411 Mommas while there and get to test out the 2015 Mitsubishi Outlander for the week. Last time I reviewed the 2015 Outlander Sport, so I was excited to try the standard edition because it had 3rd row seating.11133812_10206294538422886_6840765496378079147_n

The 3rd row seating was probably my favorite feature of this vehicle for this trip. It enabled all of us to travel together in one car rather then taking multiple and following each other. And we sure traveled & shopped a lot!

While I had the vehicle, we visited the Ann Arbor Hands on Museum which was really cool! I have a giveaway going on for 4 passes to this museum if you’re local to Michigan or plan to visit before the year is up (they expire Dec 2015).. Just check out the post below this one.

We also went shopping at the 12 Oaks Mall and made some pit stops along the way. I don’t know what it is, but I love going to malls in other states. There’s something just a little bit different seeing the state pride attire at each.

We took a family 6-person trip to Target and boy did we shop. We left with over 6 bags of stuff filled with toys, clothes, and groceries and guess what? Yep, we were able to fit it ALL in the trunk with one of the 3rd row seats pushed down as well as a stroller AND my sister in-law in the far back seat. It made it easy that she was able to hop out of the back of the trunk being that I had a car seat and booster seat and myself in the middle row. I didn’t have to worry about folding the seat down to let her out.

The push to start was another plus, but you already know I fell in love with that feature from my last review for DriveSTI. When you’re a big shopped like me, it’s easy to open the car or trunk with a quick tap instead of fiddling with your keys or in my case, trying to find them in your purse while holding bags and a 2 year old.

This standard model (I had the Cosmic Blue color if you’re wondering) didn’t come with a GPS built it. I thought that was odd being that it is 2015 and all vehicles should come equipped standard with GPS, but I guess it’s still an “upgrade”. It did still feature a 6.1″ touch screen panel to maneuver the audio features and also had the controls built into the steering wheel which I loved.

The temperature in Michigan was still in the upper 50’s, so we needed to use the heated seats quite a bit. I have to say, I miss these the most! It was rainy majority of the time – April showers, so we didn’t get to enjoy the sunroof, which was a bit small in my opinion anyway,

The gas mileage on this was amazing for how big it was, 26 MPG combined, but it’s a 4 cylinder, so the pick up when you press the gas shows it.To me though, gas mileage is a big deal and I rather have the car move just a bit slower then fill it up everyday.

All in all, we enjoyed having this addition to our vacation and it allowed us more time with our family instead of driving to our destinations in different vehicles.

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  • I received this vehicle for review purposes but all views and opinions are 100% my own.