By on April 15, 2014


The 2014 edition of the New York Auto Show kicks off tomorrow, with press days continuing into Thursday. TTAC will have live coverage of the show, but here’s a little preview of what you can expect to see starting Wednesday.

Acura TLX: The replacement for the TL and TSX has already been spied, and it’s not the drastic change in styling that many were hoping for.

Alfa Romeo 4C: Alfa’s newest sports car gets its American debut, along with federalization changes and a couple hundred pounds in extra weight.

BMW Concept X5 eDrive: BMW’s biggest SUV gets a plug-in hybrid concept to help people feel good about the polar bears.

BMW M4 Convertible (2015): The M4 for those who can afford the best in hair plug therapy.

BMW X4 (2015): Another incoherent addition to BMW’s lineup, this X3-based pseudo-coupe will add volume to the lineup, and little else.

Chevrolet Cruze: Chevrolet’s compact sedan gets a nose job in advance of its redesign.

Chevrolet Corvette: An all-new 8-speed automatic and a ragtop version of the Z06 will make purists cry, while fattening Chevrolet’s bottom line.

Dodge Challenger: Revised powertrains and styling for Dodge’s ponycar.

Dodge Charger: The Charger gets some slightly more modern styling.

Ford Focus: Ford’s Focus sedan and EV get the corporate grille.

Ford Transit Skyliner concept: A luxury van concept from Ford, sure to be of interest to 1970’s custom van enthusiasts.

Hyundai Sonata: The worst-kept secret of NY is the all-new Hyundai Sonata, which has been leaked several times over.

Kia Sedona: Kia’s oft-ignored minivan gets a new look in an attempt to capture some minivan market share. And it comes in brown.

Land Rover Discovery Vision concept: Land Rover shows off their entry-level Kardashian mobile.

Mercedes-Benz S 63 AMG Coupe: Once known as the CL, the S63 coupe is likely the last word in Grand Touring, but still looks like a very large Honda Accord coupe.

Nissan Murano: The Murano is all-new for 2015, but the big news is the death of the CrossCabriolet, which somehow escaped the grasp of an army of product planners.

Nissan Versa Sedan: America’s cheapest car gets a few tweaks. It will be nasty.

Porsche Boxster/Cayman GTS: Another incremental change for Porsche’s lesser products. Enjoy them now, before they get 4-cylinder engines.

Ram Power Wagon: Just what you need to go down to Home Depot in.

Subaru Outback: No manual. Get over it.

Toyota Camry: Toyota tweaks its most important car, proving it will do literally anything to hang on to the #1 spot.

Volkswagen Golf SportWagen: Diesel. Manual. All-wheel drive. Brown?

Volkswagen Jetta: A few styling tweaks that you can look forward to on your next rental.

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42 Comments on “A Curmudgeon’s Guide To The 2014 New York Auto Show...”

  • avatar

    So go look at one of the BMW’s and just imagine bigger and smaller sizes if the same auto. Then you’ve seen them all.

  • avatar

    The Vette variants won’t make the purists cry…. as long as they continue to offer a traditional manual transmission alongside that spiffy new flappy-paddle automatic.

    • 0 avatar

      I think ….Dumb purists will cry.

      But smart purists will realize that anything that increases sales volume of the vette and allows it to live is good. The C6 rate dropped ~ 66% from beginning to end, which is scary for fans of the car.

      • 0 avatar
        Felis Concolor

        I’m just waiting for the announcement of a bellhousing version of the 8L90, which would be a perfect complement to the crate LS9 for a modern updating of the “build your own muscle car” combination.

  • avatar

    I’ll be there Friday:

    Chrysler 200
    Dodge Charger
    Dodge Challenger
    Hyundai Sonata
    Hyundai Genesis
    Kia K9(whatever)

    In that order…is all I really care about.

    Make my video for my Youtube.

    • 0 avatar

      Grab me a pistol grip shift knob from the Challenger LOL.

      One of the things I miss most about not living in NY anymore is going to the auto show then attending a NY Rangers playoff game at the Garden. I started attending the show when I was a kid in the 80s and it was at the NY Coliseum. Back when they had “slash day” when all of the cars would get vandalized. Ah, the old New York that people are always pining for.

      • 0 avatar

        They still slash. Also pass gas in the back seat. But it’s not as bad as the food and drink pricing. That is a true crime.

        • 0 avatar

          Having attended NY Auto Show, forever…
          Unfortunately there is a segment of the population which thinks the inside trim of the car is a souvenir. Toward the end of the show some exhibitors give up and you sit in cars with partially disassembled interiors. Not Good.

          Also, if you go to Javits, drink water…a lot of it. The air is kept desert-dry to keep condensation from forming, and it makes “airplane air” look like a rain forest.

    • 0 avatar

      K900 is growing on me (who doesn’t like whale-bone trim?), but they should have called it the Morpheus.

  • avatar

    Mazda Miata: the ND is revealed. 2200lbs/170hp, $30K. Kodo design

    Auto journalists and owners get the vapors

  • avatar
    Rod Panhard

    I’m going. It’s a LOT of fun to compare the interiors of the cars immediately, and also to see how they’ve held up on the wear-and-tear cycle of the Auto Show circuit. As for the product reveals? Nothing seems particularly exciting, but I think the new Miata will be interesting.

  • avatar

    I apologize in advance for the derail, but I have a very n00b question:
    What is with the obsession with brown cars here? Are people channeling Ted Bundy and his car that no two people could describe as the same color? The instantly-forgettable nature of cars in that color? I did some searching and never found a clear answer. There was some mention of it being “authentic” in luxury cars and there’s the page on FB, but it still makes no sense to me.

    I’ve had a few brown rentals over the years and don’t see the allure. It seems people that decide to paint fleet vehicles in any shade of brown do so out of a sense that the car is so terrible that they want to spare the poor schmuck that was saddled with it the indignity of being noticed. Every Kia and Hyundai I’ve driven was some shade of brown or tan, accentuating this pattern.

    Could anyone explain this to me?

    • 0 avatar

      Brown was a toxic color for decades and automakers pretty much abandoned it. The Germans brought it back starting the mid 2000s and it has caught the eye of Hipsters and automotive enthusiasts who tire of the endless and drab cycle of silver, gray, and black.

      There is a tiny minority of curmudgeon enthusiasts who insist the answer to every automotive need is a station wagon, with a Diesel engine and manual transmission. They contend that there is no need for minivans, SUVs, CUVs, or most pickup trucks as the ulility and efficiency of the station wagon trumps all. Automotive journalists also tend to promote this view in their writings.

      Derek puts it all together by suggesting that adding brown paint to the magical mix of body style, engine, and transmission will lead to automotive nirvana. Of course, the market will ignore it in droves. But it’s fun to be part of the inside joke.

      • 0 avatar

        How was brown toxic? They made brown cars through at least the mid-80s. It only went out of style in the early 90s, then came back in the 00s. I wouldn’t own one, but then I’ve never owned a car that wasn’t white and I hope to keep it that way.

        I must be a very young curmudgeon. Though I wouldn’t call it the answer to every automotive need (I usually say most uses of an SUV are better served by a minivan or economy car, while most uses of a minivan are better served by a wagon), I agree with them on the other points. If you had to have a universal car that served all normal purposes and lasted for decades, their opinion is sound.

        Thank you for clearing this up for me.

        • 0 avatar

          Other terms you will learn about if you hang out here too much (like I do):
          Panther Love – Old Ford Crown Vics, Lincoln Town Cars, Mercury Marquis’
          W-body Love – 05 to 13 Impalas
          Humorous use of the term Game-changer
          I’m sure the rest of the B&B (Best & Brightest can add a few more…

          • 0 avatar

            W-Body love also should extend to cover the 90s Cutlass Supreme, because a Cutlass Supreme needs love, too.

          • 0 avatar

            The B&B was originally the Bread & Butter meaning the readers who looked at the advertising and bought something, at least that’s the way I understood it

    • 0 avatar

      Read this thread and you’ll know much history. Please feel free to contribute to the meme catalog.

  • avatar

    Thanks, this saves me a few bucks on a pointless trip that would have been. Last year Honda’s area was just bare empty of people. The other big H, from Korea, had people swarming over the new models, Ford was kicking ass, BMW was crowded with its locked up cars. Honda? Shieet, I could sit in every car I wanted and let kid play behind the wheels.

    Acura gotta be careful with the TLX, it may be bigger, faster and better than the RLX.

  • avatar

    Post pictures of the 4C please.

  • avatar

    Is that the X4 in the photo? That’s not bad actually, it’s cute.

  • avatar

    Volkswagen Golf SportWagen: Diesel. Manual. All-wheel drive. Brown. FTW

    TheyBeRollin. my take on the ‘brown’ fixation…….

    said completely in jest of a vehicle with a combination of automobile traits so desirable to an enthusiast and arcane that it will never sell in large numbers. the final icing on the cake would be to offer it in brown.

    hence vws offering of a diesel wagon with a manual transmission and awd (3 strikes out of 4 traits) potentially offered in ‘brown’.

    it may actually come in brown as the current jsw is offered in toffee with mandatory latte colored interior (no black available w this exterior color). quite striking if you ask me.

    so you could end up with a
    w a light colored interior!

    egads. each dealer will get 1 and it will be sold as a gently used demo after playing fetch for parts and other necessitated trips.

    • 0 avatar

      IMHO carrying around the 300-odd pounds of extra weight associated with AWD in an ordinary sedan is only justifiable if it has so much power it will easily come unstuck on dry pavement in 2nd gear.

      If you want it to go skiing, get dedicated great winter tires instead as over-confidence from AWD will only get into the ditch quicker.

      • 0 avatar
        Sam P

        All wheel drive is useful not only in the snow, but in rain as well. I went from an AWD car to a RWD car and miss being able to accelerate at full throttle from a standing stop in the rain without spinning a tire or having the traction control intervene.

        • 0 avatar

          I’m with you here. It’s too bad that my options are so slim. Living in the PNW as I do now, it’d be nice to have AWD, with a manual, in a sedan or coupe… All these traits are rare together.

          Hopefully others decide to use a similar drivetrain in more cars (I just saw in another post that they’ll be putting it in an A3 “Sportback”). The problem is getting over their reputation for poor reliability, the wagon body (not my style), and marketing for this model (which I keep hearing on iTunes radio).

        • 0 avatar

          @Sam P: “I…miss being able to accelerate at full throttle from a standing stop in the rain”

          Yeah, that’s a huge loss, because one really needs to do that so often.

    • 0 avatar

      Finding a used example of one of these in good condition would be like winning the lottery. The harder part would be finding a small cache of wrecked ones in a nearby junkyard to keep an old one on the road in 15-20 years.

      This is, of course, the problem with unusual cars. The only saving grace is that well-built diesel engines tend to last forever.

  • avatar

    I’m going next Sunday. If you stick around till the end you get to see them drive the cars out.

  • avatar

    If anyone was concerned that Jaguar’s F Type might have impacted Porsche cynical pricing, rest assured it has not happened. Witness the Cayman GTS. The GTS costs $11,400 more than the already pricey Cayman S. And for that 11 grand difference you get two option (Sport Chrono and PASM) which you could option on the Cayman S for about a third of the price increase of the GTS over the S. And what else do you get? A few minor exterior tweaks and oh wait….15 more hp and a whole 7 lb ft of torque. Oh and a GTS badge.

    Here’s hoping that their stablemate, Audi, sends another shot across their bow with the new TT-RS. There has to be a limit to the nonsense auto journos will endorse to get Porsche cars to review and a limit to the gouging that their customers will endure.

  • avatar

    The Skyliner looks brilliant, and I want to check it out.×250/b/c/0/ford_transit_skyliner_concept.jpg

  • avatar

    Alfa Romeo’s been saying that their going to sell cars here for years. I’ll believe it when I see it.

    • 0 avatar

      They have. They sold the 8C here, even though they don’t have dealers or etc. People (and blogs) continually refuse to accept that the 8C was sold in America.

      • 0 avatar

        Yes it looks like they did.

        • 0 avatar

          Blogs deny this so they can make their claim of “OMGZ no Alfa here since 1995 when they left foreverzz!”

          Just like they deny that Infiniti models were sold in Japan previously (no dealers), so they can make “OMG first time everz sold there JDM!”

  • avatar

    They just released the engine specs on the 2015 TLX. Shedding 150 lbs is quite an achievement. But since Acura is pushing it’s PAWS AWD/9 speed transmission/Accord genetics, the car most likely lost it’s beloved front double wishbones. That’s something to fly the national flag at half mast over.

    On the other hand, if it’s still got them, and they happen to be aluminum, then I will lust after that car.

    Ugh, only if some after market mfg made good front aluminum control arms for the EF/EG/EK chassis then…OMG.

  • avatar

    I find the reduced amount of swag and the reduced quality of the show models disturbing.
    When I was a kid, there were keychains, little toy cars, posters, etc.

    The past few years, you have to like the company on FB, follow them on Twitter, take a pic on instagram, give them your email and first borns’ footprint, and then, you might get a crappy lanyard.

    As for the models…. More like successful business spokeswomen, than professional show girls. Oh and last year, they didnt even allow for re-entry.
    The food sucks. Pack your own sammiches!!

    That being said, it is still the best way to sit in as many cars as possible without visiting a dealership.

  • avatar

    Isn’t Mirage cheaper than Versa, in manual version anyway?

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