2012 Los Angeles Auto Show Preview

Derek Kreindler
by Derek Kreindler

The 2012 Los Angeles Auto Show is upon us, and as usual, TTAC will have photographers in the field, complete with live shots of all the new debuts, while we provide anger-tinged appraisals of all the new debuts. Press days don’t start for another couple of days, but we’ve got a rundown of what to expect after the jump.

Acura: The beak brand will debut their new flagship luxury sedan, the RLX. Having already seen a rendering of the production car, I’d advise you all to brace yourself for an avalanche of conservative styling. The base front-wheel drive car will get a sophisticated four-wheel steering system, while the top-spec model will get the much touted Sport Hybrid AWD system.

Audi: The big news here is the proliferation of diesels. Four of them. The Q5, A6, A7 and A8 will get Audi’s new twin-turbo V6 diesel, joining the Q7 as part of Audi’s TDI lineup. What about the A4?

BMW: A coupe version of the i3 concept will be displayed.

Chevrolet: An EV version of the Spark will be unveiled – performance should be brisk, with a 0-60 time of under 8 seconds, but the car will only be sold in California for now, ostensibly due to compliance issues.

Chrysler/Fiat: The big story at Chrysler is actually Fiat; the 500 EV and a convertible version of the 500 Abarth will bow. The 500L, a four-door pseudo-crossover based on the 500, will add some depth to Fiat’s lineup in the USA.

Ford: The already unveiled Transit Connect Wagon will be shown in public, and a Fiesta ST is all but confirmed. The baby ST should get its motivation from the 1.6L Ecoboost used in the Fusion and Escape.

Honda: The sort-of newly restyled 2013 Civic will be presented by Honda to atone for their deadly sin, the 2012 Civic. We’ve seen the exterior revamp already, but the interior is still the big question mark.

Hyundai: An unnamed concept is set to be shown.

Jaguar: The XFR-S will borrow the 550 horsepower supercharged V8 from the XKR-S and transplant it into the dated but still charming XF.

Kia: An all-new Forte, including a coupe and hatchback will debut.

Mercedes-Benz: A concept vehicle depicting the G-Class in the year 2025 will be shown alongside the SLS Black Series.

MINI: The Clubvan commercial vehicle will be revealed, as well as the Paceman two-door crossover.

Porsche: The slow-selling Cayman will be replaced by…an all-new Cayman that looks a lot like the Boxster, and even uses the same powertrains. Who would have guessed?

Subaru: The 2014 Forester is the big news here. The next-generation 2.0L turbocharged Boxer will be available, but only mated to a CVT gearbox.

Toyota: The RAV4 and it’s famous 4-speed automatic will die a quiet death, replaced by an all-new version. We’ll get our first look on Wednesday.

Volkswagen: The ragtop version of the new Beetle will be unveiled.

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2 of 18 comments
  • Dave M. Dave M. on Nov 26, 2012

    "Of all the cars you mentioned the only one that even remotely interested me was the Forester…until you said no manual : (" I believe the base model will still have the manual...

  • KalapanaBlack KalapanaBlack on Nov 27, 2012

    I believe the G-wagen concept has already been shown in pictures. It's... eh. It's somebody's dream. I am 99% sure I saw a new Forte sedan on the highway over the Thanksgiving holiday. I believe I was heading north on I79 through West Virginia when I saw it, but I'm not 100% sure on the location. It was between Allentown, PA, and Charleston, WV. It caught my eye as a very bloated looking Rio. I got a decent look at it, but it was heading in the opposite direction on a divided interstate highway. Looked just like the already released pictures. No camo or anything. Not sure what it was doing in the wild. I just assumed they were already on sale.

  • Raven65 This was basically my first car - although mine was a '76. My Dad bought it new to use as a commuter for his whopping 15-minute drive to work (gas is too expensive!) - but it was given to my sister when she left for college a couple of years later - and then she passed it down to me when I got my license in 1981. It was a base model... and I mean BASE... as in NO options. Manual 4-speed (no o/d) transmission, rubber floor (no carpet), no A/C, and no RADIO (though I remedied that within a week of taking ownership). Dad paid just over three grand for it. Mine was a slightly darker shade of yellow than this one (VW called it "Rallye Yellow") with the same black vinyl "leatherette" seat covers. Let me tell you, the combination of no A/C and that black vinyl interior was BRUTAL in the SC summers! Instrumentation was sparse to say the least, but who needs a tach when you have those cool little orange dots on the speedo to indicate redline in gears (one dot for redline in 1st gear, two dots for redline in 2nd gear, three for 3rd). LOL! It wasn't much, but it was MINE... and I LOVED it! It served me well through the remainder of high school and all the way through college and into my first "real job" where I started making actual money and finally traded it in on a brand new '89 Nissan 240SX. They gave me $300 for it!!!. I wish I still had it. Thanks for the trip down memory lane!
  • Analoggrotto Telluride is still better
  • Arthur Dailey So how much more unreliable is a 50 year old Italian made vehicle in comparison to a 5 year old Italian made vehicle? After 50 years wouldn't most of the parts and areas most prone to failure have been fixed, replaced and/or addressed?Asking for a friend? ;-)
  • Pig_Iron This is happy news for everyone in the industry. 🙂
  • Dukeisduke Globally-speaking, in August, BYD was the fourth best-selling brand name. They pushed Ford (which had been fourth) to sixth, behind Hyundai.