2020 Mazda Mx-5 Miata Luggage Test | How Much Fits In The Trunk?

2020 Mazda MX-5 Miata Luggage Test | How much fits in the trunk?

The Mazda Miata would not be my first choice for a road trip car. Would probably be in the bottom 10, in fact. The interior fits me like a coffin, the seats pinch my back and the amount of passenger legroom is laughable. It's not exactly the most serene car, either. 

But hey, there are sadists out there who may want to venture somewhere in it. I work with some of them. So, as they were the ones who requested this, here is the answer to the question: how much luggage fits in the Miata's trunk?

2020 Honda Pilot Luggage Test | How Much Fits Behind The Third Row?

2020 Honda Pilot Luggage Test | How much fits behind the third row?

To date, the Volkswagen Atlas has managed to swallow more pieces of my luggage behind its raised third row than any other three-row crossover. The Hyundai Palisade came close as it was able to fit the four biggest bags in my travel arsenal. In this segment, I have also tested the Mazda CX-9 and Toyota Highlander, both of which are at the bottom of the segment in this one area. 

On paper, the Honda Pilot should be among that smallest group, providing 16.5 cubic-feet of space when the third row is raised. The Highlander is 16 cubic-feet, while the Palisade has 18 and the Atlas 20.6. In practice, however, the Pilot turns out to be far closer to those class leaders. Let's see why.

2021 Acura Tlx Patent Images Show It Looks Much Like Type S Concept

2021 Acura TLX patent images show it looks much like Type S concept

Acura brought its Type S concept to last year's Monterey Car Week as a glimmer of what we could expect from the all-new TLX coming next year. Since then, we've had better glimpses of the sedan in unintended leaks, the first in Acura's own infotainment system, now in patent images from the European Union Intellectual Property Office. Discovered by French forum Worldscoop, the details in the grayscale drawings match the color image from the infotainment software, giving us another look at hotly anticipated sedan that will infuse much-needed excitement into Acura's lineup. Even though the images show rear bumper cutouts plenty large enough to house quad pipes, the patent is presumed to show the standard TLX trim, not the Type S trim we know is coming.

Even so, we can see plenty of Type S concept influence even with the less aggressive bodywork, such as the narrower upper grille and more pronounced lower grille, the garnish on the lower intakes, the side mirror design, and flared rear fenders. The rear end in the patent shows the same taillamps and decklid shutline, aero vents in the bumper, and the reshaped license plate holder moved from the trunk to the bumper. 

2020 Toyota Highlander Luggage Test | How Much Fits Behind The Third Row?

2020 Toyota Highlander Luggage Test | How much fits behind the third row?

The 2020 Toyota Highlander is bigger than the model it replaces, growing some 2.36 inches in overall length. All of that pretty much went to its very end, as the cargo area aft of the third row sees the only significant increase of interior space, growing to 16.0 cubic feet from 13.8. 

Sounds good, but when you look at the 2020 Highlander versus these primary competitors, you'll see that 16.0 is still smaller than them all. And it's behind that third row where extra cubic feet can really make the difference, where one bag might be left behind or you'll have to resort to a rooftop carrier. By contrast, the Highlander's space with the third or second rows lowered is seemingly on par for the segment, as by those metrics, all entries are basically various degrees of enormous.

Mazda Cx-30 Cargo Capacity Test | How Much Fits In The Trunk?

Mazda CX-30 Cargo Capacity Test | How much fits in the trunk?

The 2020 Mazda CX-30 is pretty much a lifted Mazda3 hatchback. Same platform, awfully similar dimensions, and the interior's a spitting image (if not identical). Ditto cargo capacity. On paper, the two have virtually the same amount of space behind their raised back seats, with the CX-30 at 20.2 cubic-feet and the 3 with just a teensy less at 20.1. 

Now, before I go any further, let's see how much that 20.1 cubic-feet relates to in the Mazda3. I wasn't yet doing this test format back then, hence the video. 

2020 Toyota 4runner | How Much Fits In The Cargo Area?

2020 Toyota 4Runner | How much fits in the cargo area?

Of course all the luggage in my garage fits inside the 2020 Toyota 4Runner. I mean, duh, it's a midsize SUV and a boxy one at that. Thankfully, then, there's a lot more to talk about here than answering "will it fit?"  There's the matter of just how much stuff you can bring along on a rugged 4Running adventure (holy cow it's a lot!). There's the optional sliding cargo floor, the TRD Pro's jumbo roof rack and the new-for-2020 proximity entry that lets you open the tailgate by keeping the key in your pocket. And oh yes, as always, there's the power-lowering rear window.  Now, if you're looking for something a lot meatier to bite into with the 4Runner, read Dan Edmunds' Suspension Deep Dive. But, if you're still hungry, let's commence the luggage test.  Here's the cargo hold, which comes with a whopping 47.2 cubic feet of space behind its back seat. For some perspective, I'd consider the Honda Passport to have a ton of space back there, especially when compared to other two-row midsize crossovers, yet it only has 41.2 cubic feet.  Now, that 47.2 number is without the sliding cargo floor that you can see up there. To see how much you lose, here's the cargo area without it. It's not insignificant. Here is a better look at the sliding cargo tray. Here is the mechanism that deploys it as well as the little pop-up ledge near the back seats that comes with it.  Now, to the luggage. To start, I kept the cargo cover in place and kept the back seat at its fully upright and locked position.  As always, I use two mid-size roller suitcases that would need to be checked in at the airport (26 inches long, 16 wide, 11 deep), two roll-aboard suitcases that just barely fit in the overhead (24L x 15W x 10D), and one smaller roll-aboard that fits easily (23L x 15W x 10D). I also include my wife's fancy overnight bag just to spruce things up a bit (21L x 12W x 12D). Snooze. I almost could've stood there from 10 feet away and chucked them inside. OK, but what if I tried to load them all using the slide-out tray. A little harder, but still do-able. Honestly, at this point I started to question how useful the tray was. Perhaps a shorter owner would find it helpful, but even if there's still a ton of space left over, you still lose some, and you also have to make sure to load everything just-so onto the platform to make sure it doesn't topple off and stop the tray in its tracks. Verdict: I'd skip it. But the luggage testing doesn't stop there. Now, let's remove the cargo cover, which is a typical reel unit that easily pops out.  Now you can see just how much space is left over, or ... ... How much you can still carry when you fully recline the back seat. And I do mean FULLY recline, because the 4Runner is quite indulgent back there, as your author can attest in the photographs below.  As you can see, though, I've hardly been putting the max Tetris effort into this. Let's put the seats back fully forward (still perfectly comfortable), keep the cargo cover removed and see just how much stuff you can fit back there. Boom! That would be all the luggage described above plus a 38-quart cooler, a giant two-person inflatable river raft, a small Harry Potter Ravenclaw backpack and a Graco Pack 'N Play portable play pen. I'd say that's pretty representative of a family weekend 4Running adventure. And if you still have more stuff ... The TRD Pro includes a serious roof rack with four movable cross bars. I'm not really sure what would've been left in my garage to throw up there (plus the weather was garbage, hence the lack of an Army Green photo), so you'll just have to use your imagination.  Now, if this reminds you of the FJ Cruiser's rack, that's probably the point. The dearly departed FJ also donated the TRD Pro's Army Green paint for 2020 and the Voodoo Blue paint (pictured) for 2019. Dear Toyota, why can't we have them both every year?  And to use the Voodoo Blue truck one more time, here's the always-awesome power-lowering rear window. It is fantastic.  Note the spot next to the R in 4Runner. It's a key hole on the 2019 TRD Pro, but for 2020 ... It has buttons that do what they say they do since proximity entry has been added to all trims but the SR5 and TRD Off-Road for 2020.  So there you have it. Not only is the 2020 Toyota 4Runner extremely awesome, it's extremely practical too. 

Much Of Japan Sizzles In Summer Heat

Much of Japan sizzles in summer heat

Much of Japan sweltered on Tuesday, as temperatures hovered around 35 degrees Celsius. Weather officials are urging people to take precautions against heatstroke, as the hot weather is expected to continue for about a week.

A high pressure system brought clear skies over much of northern and western Japan on Tuesday. The cloudless conditions helped temperatures soar.

Hottest Day Of The Year Observed In Much Of Japan

Hottest day of the year observed in much of Japan

Japanese weather officials say they believe the rainy season has ended in Tokyo and other parts of the Kanto-Koshin region. They say the mercury soared above 35 degrees Celsius in many cities to mark the hottest day of the year yet.

A high pressure system hovered over wide areas between northern and western Japan on Monday.

Continuing Heavy Rain Threat To Much Of Japan

Continuing heavy rain threat to much of Japan

Weather officials are calling for caution as continuing heavy rain may cause landslides, flooding in low-lying areas, and swollen rivers till midweek.

The Meteorological Agency says the lingering seasonal rain front is bringing active rain clouds to parts of eastern and western Japan.