The Truth About Cars » Detroit Auto Show http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. Sat, 29 Aug 2015 15:27:23 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.2.4 The Truth About Cars is dedicated to providing candid, unbiased automobile reviews and the latest in auto industry news. The Truth About Cars no The Truth About Cars editors@ttac.com editors@ttac.com (The Truth About Cars) 2006-2009 The Truth About Cars The Truth About Cars » Detroit Auto Show http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/wp-content/themes/ttac-theme/images/logo.gif http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com How Do You Say “New Car Smell” (or “Offgassing”) in Chinese? http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/02/say-new-car-smell-offgassing-chinese/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/02/say-new-car-smell-offgassing-chinese/#comments Sun, 15 Feb 2015 15:25:26 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=1000530 With the return of two storied nameplates like the Ford GT and Acura NSX, it’s easy to understand why the only Chinese automaker with a display at the North American International Auto Show last month in Detroit, Guangzhou Automobile Group Co., didn’t get much attention. For the past decade or so, a number of Chinese car […]

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GAC MOTOR

With the return of two storied nameplates like the Ford GT and Acura NSX, it’s easy to understand why the only Chinese automaker with a display at the North American International Auto Show last month in Detroit, Guangzhou Automobile Group Co., didn’t get much attention. For the past decade or so, a number of Chinese car companies have had displays and press conferences at the media previews to the Detroit show, some of them with plans to export cars to North America, but so far little or nothing of substance has come to fruition from those plans. Whether or not they end up selling Chinese cars here, it does make a little bit of sense to take advantage of the presence at the NAIAS of thousands of members of the international press. That’s probably why GAC used the 2015 NAIAS to have the world premiere of their GS4 compact SUV. In addition to the GS4, which appears to be more of a car based crossover than a serious SUV, GAC also showed their GA6 sedan (which they say was developed for “the higher end market”) and the WITSTAR concept (that included it’s own built in aquarium between the back seats).

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Surprisingly, they kept their display in the concourse of Cobo Hall up for the duration of the industry preview and public days of the show as well, no doubt to gauge the reaction of American consumers (and those Canadians who cross the river from Ontario to see the show as well) should they decide to bring product to this continent. From comments I overheard, consumer reaction may not have been as positive as they hoped.

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Most automotive writers and journalists who cover the car scene leave Detroit by the time the sun goes down on the second day of the NAIAS media preview. I have the advantage that Cobo Hall is just a 20 minute drive from where I’m sitting now so if I forget to shoot photos or video of this or that car in the hubub of the preview, I can always pop downtown during the public days of the show. The GAC cars were on my list of fill-ins, and while I was circling the car taking my usual sequence of car shots, I watched a couple of men check out and sit in the GS4.

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What they saw was a car with the interior trim standards of something from Korea at least a couple of product cycles old. Nothing particularly terrible looking but despite GAC’s claim to be “on par with global rivals”, it’s not quite on the level that most manufacturers are meeting or exceeding these days. The gentlemen adjusted their seats, and fiddled with the controls. As I waited for them to exit the car so I could get more photos, they were talking not about how the GAC GS4 looked and felt, but rather how it smelled. “Offgassing” was what they said.

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After they exited the car and I went to take some interior photographs, I got a whiff (quite literally) of what they were talking about. Standing about 18-24 inches from the car, in the open doorway, the chemical odor was stronger than any “new car smell” I’ve ever experienced. If this is what it smelled like in the relatively cool concourse of Cobo Hall in January, one can only imagine how strong the offgassing would be on a hot summer day with the car sitting in the sun.

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GAC may truly believe that they are on par with global car companies, but right now their products feel and smell too cheap to compete even with the bottom feeders of the North American market. If they tried exporting their current vehicles to North America, to use another golf idiom, they wouldn’t make the cut.

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can get a parallax view at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS

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In Defense of the Detroit Auto Show, What Chris Harris Could Have Enjoyed http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/01/defense-detroit-auto-show-chris-harris-enjoyed/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2015/01/defense-detroit-auto-show-chris-harris-enjoyed/#comments Sun, 11 Jan 2015 03:21:01 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=975305 You can put me on the list of fans of Chris Harris. As a car enthusiast, you’ve got to love someone who can get as excited about driving a Citroen 2CV as he is behind the wheel of Ferrari’s latest and greatest supercar. However, while I appreciate his perspective on things automotive his recent screed […]

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You can put me on the list of fans of Chris Harris. As a car enthusiast, you’ve got to love someone who can get as excited about driving a Citroen 2CV as he is behind the wheel of Ferrari’s latest and greatest supercar. However, while I appreciate his perspective on things automotive his recent screed explaining why he’s so glad that he won’t be attending the North American International Auto Show this year was so one sided that I have to stand in defense of one of my home town’s most major annual events.

Almost everything that Harris said about Detroit and the NAIAS is (or was) true.

Cobo Hall is a beehive of activity as workers get displays ready for the big NAIAS media preview on Monday.

Cobo Hall is a beehive of activity as workers get displays ready for the big NAIAS media preview on Monday.

Yes, the city of Detroit is full of decay (though I genuinely think things have bottomed out, there are tiny tendrils of regrowth). Yes, it is cold in Michigan in January (though it’s colder and windier in Chicago when they have their auto show in February). Yes, Cobo Hall, the region’s main convention center, was getting a bit shabby and in need of updating the last time Chris came to the Detroit show in 2007 (though the building has since undergone a $250 million renovation). Yes, some of the exotic and ultra luxury brands like Ferrari and Rolls Royce, and even some of the mainstream auto manufacturers like Nissan and Jaguar Land Rover have opted out of displays in Detroit as the auto industry experienced wrenching financial turmoil, bankruptcies and bailouts since 2007 (though many have returned). Yes, the big auto shows on the European continent, like the one in Germany, dwarf even North America’s most *important car show (though I will point out that in the UK, where Chris Harris lives, they haven’t been able to sustain a big annual auto show for some years now).

All of those things, and more, are true, and I can understand how someone, like Harris, who has a love/hate relationship with Ferrari might be disappointed at not being able to check out Maranello’s costly toys after traveling almost 4,000 miles to go to a major show. I admit that it’s a bit easier for me to attend the NAIAS than it is for Mr. Harris. He needs a passport, a plane, a hotel room and local transportation. I just have to have gas in the car and make sure that I get downtown early enough to find one of the free parking spaces that I know about that are within a couple of blocks of Cobo. I usually apply for credentials late enough to have to pick them up at the show, so to avoid a big line I head downtown early, just before rush hour and it only takes me about 20 minutes to drive there. The NAIAS is situated so conveniently for me that one year, when I discovered after I parked the car at 7:00 AM that I had left my camera bag at home, I was able to drive home to Oakland County, grab my cameras, stop for a splash of gas because the needle was below empty, drive down the Lodge freeway in the teeth of rush hour and be back at Cobo before eight o’clock.

The North American Car and Truck of the Year finalists await the selection of winners.

The North American Car and Truck of the Year finalists await the selection of winners.

Much as what Chris said about the Detroit show is true, there are a couple of valuable aspects of the NAIAS that Chris didn’t mention, aspects that make it worth going through the hassle of getting credentials, dealing with bad weather, all that hard cement under the D.E. McNabb company’s carpeting, and trying to survive the heard of ravenous autojournalists, general journalists and assorted hangers on.

To begin with, for a writer or journalist interested in cars and the auto industry, particularly one that doesn’t work for a large, establishment media organization, the NAIAS is an opportunity to ask questions of executives and engineers that would otherwise be mostly off-limits. Doron Levin, Dan Neil or Paul Ingrassia can get someone like Ford CEO Mark Fields on the phone but while TTAC is fairly influential and read in the executive suites of automakers (we’ve seen the IP addresses in the logs) I rather doubt that the switchboard at the glass house in Dearborn will put me through. While much of the “news” that is generated at the NAIAS is prepacked press releasese, I use the occasion to get answers to my own questions, creating the chance for publishing something genuinely newsworthy.

I hadn't seen it announced, but at least one Chinese car company will have a display and press conference at the NAIAS media preview.

I hadn’t seen it announced, but at least one Chinese car company, Guangzhou, will have a display and press conference at the NAIAS media preview. 

Then there is the social aspect of the NAIAS. Derek Kreindler and I exchange emails almost daily and speak on the phone every week or two. Jack Baruth and I are in contact even more frequently than that, since our friendship includes interests in things other than cars. However, just about the only time that I see them face to face is at the NAIAS. The same is true for other car writers that I know, even those based in Detroit. There are mentors of mine like Paul Abelson of Land Line magazine and the aforementioned Mr.Levin, currently at Fortune, and it’s good to see them. You also get to meet people that you might otherwise not meet. The only place I’d likely come across Chris Harris himself would be at the NAIAS, well, if he attended.

Besides writing colleagues and people who work for the car companies, over the years I’ve gotten to know some of the people working for the show itself, like Jeannie, the nice lady who runs the credentials process, and then there are the professionally beautiful women. For a beta geezer like me it’s worth a 20 minute drive just to hang with Caroline and Renee, though you won’t see me try to impress them trying to bust a hip hop move at Cobo. Nor anywhere else, though the ethanol (and otherwise) enhanced conversations at the Pink Palace in Allen Park are always fun.

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Some Teamsters were delivering a Graham Paige “Sharknose” for one of the NAIAS displays. A pleasant surprise since I’m one of the relatively few people who know about the car, a personal favorite and likely the first Batmobile.

While I understand Chris Harris’ reticence about coming to frigid Detroit in January, for a car guy like me and likely you the NAIAS is an unparalleled experience. For TTAC writers it’s a great opportunity to cover a big automotive event with a perspective that’s not the same as what you’ll hear from the heard. Also, for Detroiters, the NAIAS is a Big Deal. There are going to be about 6,000 people with media credentials, many of them from the international press and broadcasting industries. Add in all of the people working at the show for car companies that are not based in Detroit. A few years back, Volkswagen flew in a Lufthansa culinary crew, not from New York’s Kennedy airport, but from Munich. Hotels are booked up, restaurant reservations are hard to come by.

From an automotive standpoint It’s going to be an exciting show. It’s been five years since the funereal atmosphere of the 2009 NAIAS. The industry is making money and the horsepower wars continue unabated even as hybrids and EVs proliferate. Things are going so well in the industry that some pundits caution against irrational exuberance. As important as it was to attend the show in 2009 when the industry was in crisis mode, it’s equally important to gauge the industry by the NAIAS when things are going well. We may not see huge shrimp cocktails per the New York Times’ cliche about the Detroit show, but people being people, profitable companies will put on the Ritz trying to impress.

One of the reasons why I was disappointed in Chris Harris’ slagging off of Detroit was that for a car enthusiast there are so many places of interest, museums and the like for them to enjoy, and not just for car enthusiasts. Over the past few decades a steady number of rhythm & blues music fans from Harris’ homeland in the UK and other parts of Europe have come to Detroit to see not just Motown’s Hitsville USA, but also the sites of other recording studios and night clubs where musicians like Jackie Wilson and John Lee Hooker played.

The Motor City has a legendary musical history and culture that includes great blues and jazz performers as well as the relatively better known rock and Motown acts. As a longtime music fan whose collection of over 1,100 vinyl and CD recordings along with about 400 hours of live tape, some of which I recorded myself, I can state unequivocally that you’ll be blown away by the talent you can see for free at open jams held just about every night of the week around the Motor City. Check out the Detroit Blues Society’s open jam and scheduled appearances for details.

On Sunday night, just before the press days, after I meet and schmooze with my friends and colleagues at the Pink Palace in Allen Park, I’ll be heading to the Blue Goose Inn way over on the other side of town in Ste Claire Shores to catch an open jam hosted by Jim McCarty. In addition to being a founding member of Cactus and the Rockets, Jim played a bunch seminal rock riffs as the lead guitarist in the Detroit Wheels, fronted by Mitch Ryder. Sock It To Me Baby. Jim’s such a great guitar player that there’s a false rumor circulating that Mike Bloomfield, who did a lot of session work, played lead on the Wheels’ hits. The rumor pisses McCarty off, and rightly so, but in a way, it’s a huge compliment to be mistaken for Bloomfield, one of the guitar gods.

Guitarist Jim McCarty, at the Blue Goose Inn, Saint Claire Shores, MI

Guitarist Jim McCarty, at the Blue Goose Inn, Saint Claire Shores, MI

More than likely, one of the other players at the jam will be a 14 year old kid named Brendon Linsley, who’s been adopted by the players in the Detroit blues scene. He’s homeschooled so it’s not unusual to see him, chaperoned by his parents, at a club on a school night. You can find lots of young teens with great musical chops on YouTube, but Brendon has an old soul, as more than one player has put it. He’ll play some unique riff and experienced professional players will perk up their ears and pay attention.

If you’re in town for the media preview and go to the Goose and want to say hello, I’ll be the geezer with the graying red beard and a fedora (not sure if it will be black or grey) with a faux “press” card in my hat band.

I’m not sure who all is going to be at the NAIAS, but The Truth About Cars will have at least three writers on-site at Cobo, Derek, Jack and myself, and our sister site, Autoguide, will have a crew there as well. If there is something particular you’d like for us to do at the NAIAS, a question you’d like answered or a newly revealed car you’d like details on, please let us know in the comments.

A clearer shot of the Sharknose, just because.

A clearer shot of the Sharknose, just because.

* I was going to say “North America’s biggest auto show” but the folks at the Chicago Auto Show have been very nice to me so I will point out that the CAS usually has more cars on display than the Detroit show, and attendance at the McCormick Place event is a little bit higher than the million or so people who attend the NAIAS. Detroit is the king daddy, though, when it comes to new product and concept reveals. About 1/5th the number of journalists attend the Chicago show as register for Detroit.

Ronnie Schreiber edits Cars In Depth, a realistic perspective on cars & car culture and the original 3D car site. If you found this post worthwhile, you can get a parallax view at Cars In Depth. If the 3D thing freaks you out, don’t worry, all the photo and video players in use at the site have mono options. Thanks for reading – RJS

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NAIAS 2013: Infiniti Reveals New Q50 – Same V6 As G37, Now With Optional Battery Power http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/01/naias-2013-infiniti-reveals-new-q50-same-v6-as-g37-now-with-optional-battery-power/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/01/naias-2013-infiniti-reveals-new-q50-same-v6-as-g37-now-with-optional-battery-power/#comments Mon, 14 Jan 2013 15:12:24 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=473678 Fresh off a PR campaign to rename every new vehicle in their line-up, Infiniti has shown their new model with the updated Q-numeric model designation: the 2014 Infiniti Q50. On the surface, the new Infiniti Q50 now shares some more DNA from its brothers and sisters, grabbing the corporate design language and putting it to good […]

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Fresh off a PR campaign to rename every new vehicle in their line-up, Infiniti has shown their new model with the updated Q-numeric model designation: the 2014 Infiniti Q50.

On the surface, the new Infiniti Q50 now shares some more DNA from its brothers and sisters, grabbing the corporate design language and putting it to good use. The front-end lower valance is somewhat similar to new Lexus models, but that isn’t really a bad thing.

Power will again come from the Nissan-Renault 3.7L V6, generating 328hp, that sees ubiquitous use through all of the company’s vehicles. A manual transmission will no longer be an option, with the model offered solely with a 7-speed slushbox powering the rear wheels.

The big news: the Q50 will be available with the same hybrid system currently available in the M35h, good for 354hp, driving either the rear wheels or all four corners. This system relies on the older 3.5L V6 (still used in the Infiniti JX35).

Inside, the gadgetry has received a serious upgrade. Gone is the keyboard-like buttons below the single screen infotainment system. Instead, two screens sitting one atop the other provide the mission control interface for the majority of the tech functions.

Price? Not available. But, if I were a betting man, I’d hunt down the current G37’s MSRP and add 5-7%.

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NAIAS 2013: Everyone’s Most Favorite-ist Car Exec Saves Least Favorite-ist Electric Car…With A 6.2-liter LT1 V8! http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/01/naias-2013-everyones-most-favorite-ist-car-exec-saves-least-favorite-ist-electric-car-with-a-6-2-liter-lt1-v8/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/01/naias-2013-everyones-most-favorite-ist-car-exec-saves-least-favorite-ist-electric-car-with-a-6-2-liter-lt1-v8/#comments Mon, 14 Jan 2013 14:09:24 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=473621 It isn’t often one of the biggest news items coming out of NAIAS 2013 is from a tuning house … especially a tuning house nobody has ever heard of before. Attach the name Bob Lutz to a car, along with a brand new, fire breathing, tire shredding 6.2L LT1 V8 from the new Corvette, you […]

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It isn’t often one of the biggest news items coming out of NAIAS 2013 is from a tuning house … especially a tuning house nobody has ever heard of before. Attach the name Bob Lutz to a car, along with a brand new, fire breathing, tire shredding 6.2L LT1 V8 from the new Corvette, you are bound to turn some heads. Oh, and they wedged it into a Fisker Karma.

That’s Maximum to the Bob.

The supposed soon-to-be production ready boutique supercar is called the VL Automotive Destino. While the fossil-fuel burning horsepower generator and its choice of automatic or manual transmissions is an addition, the rest is a story of subtraction. Gone is the weird polarizing Fisker Karma face for a more Ferrari-esque affair. Chuck out the batteries and their added risk of fiery death. Oh, and that EcoTec? That’ll just get in the way of its bigger brother.

Everything else is pretty much as it was when it left Finland.

Want one? They say toward the end of the year you’ll be able to buy one. The price? If you’re asking, chances are you won’t be able to buy one.

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NAIAS 2013: LEAKED – Jeep Grand Cherokee Gets First Diesel Since Dr. Z Era http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/01/naias-2013-leaked-jeep-grand-cherokee-gets-first-diesel-since-dr-z-era/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/01/naias-2013-leaked-jeep-grand-cherokee-gets-first-diesel-since-dr-z-era/#comments Mon, 14 Jan 2013 14:09:18 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=473640 The big news to come out of Jeep today: DIESEL. And we aren’t talking about some HD truck diesel from a Ram pick-up. No, a proper fuel-sipping one, in the form of a 3.0L V6, will be available on the Grand Cherokee starting in the 2014 model year. Whoa, I think I just experienced the […]

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The big news to come out of Jeep today: DIESEL. And we aren’t talking about some HD truck diesel from a Ram pick-up. No, a proper fuel-sipping one, in the form of a 3.0L V6, will be available on the Grand Cherokee starting in the 2014 model year.

Whoa, I think I just experienced the weirdest deja vu…

Oh, right…remember when the Germans kinda sorta owned Jeep and they used one of their executives as a pitchman? He was old, had a moustache that would be a great supporting actor on Magnum P.I., and he tried to hock Jeeps to children?

Click here to view the embedded video.

Anyway, back to the new Grand Cherokee.

After receiving a bit of a refresh, some higher-end models will be offered with the new-fangled 8-speed automatic from ZF – the same transmission that allows the Ram 1500 to get better fuel economy than a Caravan. Will it be mated with the new diesel? We’re not sure. Maybe Sergio will tell us during the official reveal later in the week.

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NAIAS 2013: Nissan Teases Versa Note, Because Note Means Hatchback http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/01/naias-2013-nissan-teases-versa-note-because-note-means-hatchback/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2013/01/naias-2013-nissan-teases-versa-note-because-note-means-hatchback/#comments Mon, 14 Jan 2013 13:06:34 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=473613 Nissan is keeping true to its promise of offering up a new model every 3.5 seconds for the rest of time. What you see above is the newest child to be birthed from Yokohama Prefecture, Japan – the Nissan Versa Note. You can buy a new Nissan Note in Japan – a high roofline 5-door […]

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Nissan is keeping true to its promise of offering up a new model every 3.5 seconds for the rest of time. What you see above is the newest child to be birthed from Yokohama Prefecture, Japan – the Nissan Versa Note.

You can buy a new Nissan Note in Japan – a high roofline 5-door hatchback – but, we still have the older Versa hatch (though, honestly, who would want a Versa hatch that looks anything like the new Versa Sedan? Smart move, Nissan.)

Why not just ship the new Note from Japan, add a Versa badge, and call it a new model? Product development at its finest!

…or maybe Nissan will give us a surprise.

Never mind, who am I kidding?

The Nissan Versa Note is set to be revealed tomorrow, so keep your eyes here.

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NAIAS Preview: 2013 Ford Fusion Official Shots And Specs http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/01/naias-preview-2013-ford-fusion-official-shots-and-specs/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/01/naias-preview-2013-ford-fusion-official-shots-and-specs/#comments Mon, 09 Jan 2012 04:39:30 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=424825 Some of the commenters took me to task for what seemed to be undue praise for the 2013 Ford Fusion. So, without prejudice, here is the 2013 Ford Fusion and Ford Fusion Energi. The 2013 Fusion will be based on the same platform that underpins the Ford Mondeo. Three powertrains will be offered; a 2.5L […]

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Some of the commenters took me to task for what seemed to be undue praise for the 2013 Ford Fusion. So, without prejudice, here is the 2013 Ford Fusion and Ford Fusion Energi.

The 2013 Fusion will be based on the same platform that underpins the Ford Mondeo. Three powertrains will be offered; a 2.5L four-cylinder utilized on other Ford products, making 170 horsepower and 170 lb-ft of torque mated to a 6-speed automatic, and two Ecoboost options. A 1.6L Ecoboost will make 179 horsepower and 172 lb-ft and will be the sole configuration available with a 6-speed manual transmission. Fuel economy for the 1.6L is said to be 26/37 mpg city/highway. A 2.0L Ecoboost will put out 237 horsepower and 250 lb-ft of torque, but will have an all-wheel drive option. A 6-speed automatic is the sole transmission.

The Fusion Hybrid returns with 47/44 mpg city/highway figures being reported. The Atkinson cycle engine is downsized from 2.5L to 2.0L, making 185 horsepower and 130 lb-ft of torque but transmission details weren’t available at this time. A lane departure warning system, SYNC, active park assist, blind spot monitoring system and MyFord Touch will be available.

A plug-in Fusion, dubbed the Fusion Energi, will be available. Ford didn’t disclose battery pack size, charge times or official range figures (although it is estimated to be 500 miles) but the car is said to get 100MPGe.

Plug it in. Photo courtesy of Ford. Zemanta Related Posts Thumbnail Zemanta Related Posts Thumbnail 2013 Ford Fusion 2013 Ford Fusion 2013 Ford Fusion Energi 2013 Ford Fusion Energi 2013 Ford Fusion 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid 2013 Ford Fusion 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid 2013 Ford Fusion Energi 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid 2013 Ford Fusion 2013 Ford Fusion 2013 Ford Fusion 2013 Ford Fusion 2013 Ford Fusion

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NAIAS Preview: Cadillac ATS http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/01/naias-preview-cadillac-ats/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/01/naias-preview-cadillac-ats/#comments Sun, 08 Jan 2012 19:08:03 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=424775 The Cadillac ATS was revealed this morning amid a torrent of lewd headlines and premature requests for an ATS-V wagon. Visually identical to the CTS, the ATS is supposed to be a competitor to the BMW 3-Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class and Audi A4, with the biggest question being what the hell is going to be done […]

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The Cadillac ATS was revealed this morning amid a torrent of lewd headlines and premature requests for an ATS-V wagon. Visually identical to the CTS, the ATS is supposed to be a competitor to the BMW 3-Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class and Audi A4, with the biggest question being what the hell is going to be done with the CTS?

Powering the CTS will be a 2.5L 4-cylinder as the base engine that will likely make 190 horsepower, 180 lb-ft and return 30 mpg on the highway. This engine will likely end up in Hertz Premium Collection editions of the ATS, but there’s also a 2.0L 270-horsepower turbocharged 4-cylinder, and a 3.6L V6 making 318 horsepower. A 6-speed manual and 6-speed automatic will be offered.

Vague mentions of a 3,400 lb curb weight were thrown around, but nobody has determined what engine or transmission combinations were in reporting this figure. The 2013 BMW 3-Series, for reference, weighs in at 3311 for a manual 328i at its lightest, while an automatic 335i tops out at 3509, the heaviest car in the range. The ATS will have a multilink rear suspension, available Brembo brakes, all-wheel drive and magnetic ride control. Cadillac’s CUE system will also be offered.

 

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Porsche Cayenne Diesel Coming To America In 2012 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/01/porsche-cayenne-diesel-coming-to-america-in-2012/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2012/01/porsche-cayenne-diesel-coming-to-america-in-2012/#comments Wed, 04 Jan 2012 16:54:45 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=424249 Forget Amerindian prognostications of the apocalypse occurring in 2012 – the sight of an oil-burning Porsche SUV is enough for some to consider it the end of the world. The announcement of a diesel powered Porsche Cayenne was buried deep within a press release for the Porsche 911 Cabriolet’s debut at the 2012 North American […]

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Forget Amerindian prognostications of the apocalypse occurring in 2012 – the sight of an oil-burning Porsche SUV is enough for some to consider it the end of the world.

The announcement of a diesel powered Porsche Cayenne was buried deep within a press release for the Porsche 911 Cabriolet’s debut at the 2012 North American International Auto Show. According to the release, the spring launch of the previously revealed Panamera GTS “…will subsequently be followed by the Cayenne Diesel as Porsche’s first compression-ignition car in the USA.”

A bit of digging on the Porsche UK site shows that the Cayenne Diesel puts up some decent numbers. 245 horsepower and 405 lb-ft of torque with the sprint to 60 mph coming up in 7.6 seconds. A V6 powered Cayenne with the Tiptronic gearbox is only .2 seconds quicker. The Diesel has the clear edge in fuel economy – returning 8.4L/100km in the city and 6.5L/100km – according to our conversions thats 27 mpg around town and 36 mpg on the freeway. The Cayenne V6 returns a meager 16/23 mpg by comparison.

Pricing and positioning for the Cayenne Diesel hasn’t been announced, but we can look to both the existing Cayenne lineup as well as its competitors for clues. The current Cayenne lineup has the Cayenne V6 at $48,200, while the V8-powered Cayenne S retails for $65,000. The Hybrid model (with a supercharged V6 and hybrid drivetrain is $69,000. The diesel will have to bridge the substantial gulf between the two cars, and given Porsche’s propensity to charge exorbitant sums for trivial widgets like colored wheel crests, look for the Cayenne Diesel to err towards the higher side of the pricing spread.

BMW and Mercedes-Benz offer their own range of diesel engines on certain SUVs (the X5, M-Class and GL-Class. The R-Class is questionable as an SUV), but their pricing strategy differs as widely as their respective marketing narratives.  BMW positions the X5 diesel as a much more expensive option – costing some $9200 more than a base X5 35i with the 3.0L twin-turbo I6, while the Mercedes ML350 BlueTEC carries a premium of $1590. The GL350 BlueTEC on the other hand costs $1000 less than the base gasoline GL450.

 

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Chrysler Keeping It Quiet For Detroit Auto Show http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2009/12/chrysler-keeping-it-quiet-for-detroit-auto-show/ http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2009/12/chrysler-keeping-it-quiet-for-detroit-auto-show/#comments Mon, 21 Dec 2009 18:20:19 +0000 http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/?p=339831 Chrysler have seen the Detroit Auto Show as a venue for excessively extroverted stunts. Previous years saw a Jeep dropping from the ceiling, leaping minivans and cowboys herding cattle outside the exhibit hall. Top Chrysler executives even traditionally poured drinks for visitors at its Firehouse bar. But with the economy coming of recession and Chrysler […]

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Kerboom! (courtesy: popular mechanics)

Chrysler have seen the Detroit Auto Show as a venue for excessively extroverted stunts. Previous years saw a Jeep dropping from the ceiling, leaping minivans and cowboys herding cattle outside the exhibit hall. Top Chrysler executives even traditionally poured drinks for visitors at its Firehouse bar. But with the economy coming of recession and Chrysler coming out a Chapter 11 reorganisation, CEO Sergio Marchionne feels that the extravagance needs to be severely curtailed, and according to Asiaone.com, he has put an embargo on press events. “We wanted to be respectful of everyone’s time. Mr. Marchionne is a very practical guy,” Chrysler spokesman Rick Deneau told AFP. “We didn’t have anything to show.” Well, besides a Lancia rebadged as a Chrysler, but who wants to draw a lot of attention to that?

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