By on November 30, 2018

gladiator

Outside of a Nissan-hosted panel preceding the first media day, the typically mobility discussion was muted at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show (and even that panel wasn’t nearly as eye-roll inducing as the usual Ford pronouncements — at least this panel included actual experts making reasonable points, even if I disagree with some of them.)

L.A. was all about the cars – cars you’ll soon be able to buy, should you have the means.

(Read More…)

By on November 29, 2018

LOS ANGELES – If you weren’t specifically told the Nissan Maxima sedan and Nissan Murano crossover received a redesign for 2019, you’d likely not notice.

I’m not being mean – Nissan just didn’t change much with either vehicle.

(Read More…)

By on November 28, 2018

2020 Lincoln Aviator

LOS ANGELES – A press release full of flying puns heralded the new 2020 Lincoln Aviator.

Tech is the key with this SUV – literally. One available feature is the ability to use your smartphone to unlock the doors and start the engine. Yes, that’s a very 2018 type of thing for an OEM to do.

(Read More…)

By on November 27, 2018

2019 Honda Passport

LOS ANGELES – Chevrolet brought the Blazer name back, and Ford is about to bring back the Bronco. What’s next, a Honda Passport?

That’s not a joke – the company really is resurrecting the Passport moniker. It will be slapped on an all-new five-seat crossover for the 2019 model year.

(Read More…)

By on November 30, 2017

Toyota FT-AC

Toyota pulled the wraps off its FT-AC Concept at the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show today.

Its full name is Future Toyota Adventure Concept, but whatever you call it, this concept is ready for trail duty. Or at least, it looks the part.

As per usual with concepts, details on specs are light. The press release mentions 20-inch wheels with all-terrain tires, fog lamps, LED headlights, infrared cameras mounted on the mirrors that can record off-road driving exploits and in-car Wi-Fi that can be used to broadcast the footage. There’s also a roof rack with rear-facing LED lights that can be controlled from the cabin, and a hideaway integrated bike rack.

(Read More…)

By on December 9, 2016

2018 Volkswagen Atlas, Image: Volkswagen

There’s no doubt Volkswagen needs its new midsize Atlas to be a home run (or, at least, a ground rule double) to keep its American dealers appeased following the now-year-long diesel emissions scandal. Even before the scandal, Volkswagen USA could neither create a product mix befitting American sensibilities nor price its ill-marketed product at price points palatable to the American public.

Yet, Atlas — Volkswagen’s crossover slotting between the compact Tiguan and upmarket Touareg — wears sheetmetal penned by Ativan-popping designers, and one of Volkswagen’s design employees agrees.

(Read More…)

By on November 16, 2016

Alfa-Romeo-Stelvio-1

Automakers have an easy way of determining which new model is guaranteed to make the company money. If the answer to the simple question “Is it an SUV?” is a clear, definite “yes,” well, that’s a good enough indicator for most.

Alfa Romeo knows that in this day and age, not including an SUV in its lineup would be the kiss of death, hence the need for the 2018 Stelvio. Revealed in images on the eve of its Los Angeles Auto Show debut, the Stelvio borrows the face, platform and performance characteristics of its midsize sedan stablemate, the oft-delayed Giulia.

Sporting Italian lines that make vehicles built north of the Alps look frumpy and bureaucratic in comparison, Alfa Romeo also hopes the Stelvio temps buyers with what’s underneath its dress. (Read More…)

By on November 15, 2016

2017 Honda Civic Coupe Si – Image: HondaWe’re far removed from the 91-horsepower 1984 Honda Civic Si.

Honda, on the eve of the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show, introduced the Si version of the tenth-generation Civic in prototype coupe form. Honda plans to bring the Si to market as a 2017 model next year with both sedan and coupe bodystyles.

Expect very few changes for the coupe when this “prototype” becomes a production car next year. In Honda vernacular, “prototype” is as close to production as a production car can be without actually being the production car. (Read More…)

By on November 15, 2016

2017 Nissan Sentra NISMO – Image: Nissan USATwo months after bringing the Juke’s 1.6-liter turbocharged four-cylinder engine to the Sentra lineup, Nissan is one-upping the Sentra SR Turbo with the 2017 Nissan Sentra NISMO.

It’s been three years since Nissan showcased a Sentra NISMO concept at the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show, but the 2016 Los Angeles Auto Show sees the arrival of a production version that is, according to Nissan, more than just a bodykit.

In this case, NISMO also means a stiffened structure, unique suspension tuning, and the requisite exterior upgrades.
(Read More…)

By on November 30, 2015

Scion C-HR Concept (54 of 74)

I am writing to you today from Los Angeles, California, which is currently 65 degrees Fahrenheit (also known as 1.4 million degrees Celsius) and home to approximately 800 Mercedes G-Wagens per square mile (6.7 million G-Wagens per square kilometer).

I have been driving around Los Angeles for about a day and a half now, and I have very much appreciated all the unique cars I’ve seen. For example, I have already seen: The new Scion iM. The new Smart car. An early 2000s Toyota RAV4 EV. Bright red and bright green examples of Porsche Cayenne GTS. And the new Toyota Prius, which I personally like, even though the vast majority of car enthusiasts believe it to be Satan in hybrid hatchback form.

But the main automotive event going on right now in Los Angeles is not on the streets. It’s inside, at the Notorious B.I.G. Convention Center, where the Los Angeles Auto Show is currently underway. I watched this auto show with great interest, because many exciting new cars were revealed, and then quickly forgotten about moments later when the next exciting new car was revealed.

And so, today, I ask the question that is on the mind of virtually everyone, from automotive PR directors to automotive PR directors’ assistants: Why the hell are we still doing the whole auto show thing?

(Read More…)

By on November 23, 2015

2017 Hyundai Elantra at 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show (2015 LAAS)

Shortly after the debut of its Avante brother in South Korea, the Elantra was revealed for the first time in North America last week at the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show.

Going into its sixth generation, the Elantra looks offer even more in its class with the addition of new safety kit and technology that makes even class-above vehicles blush.

But, even though the new Elantra is much improved over the outgoing model in almost every conceivable way, it’s hard not to think it looks a bit, well, familiar.

(Read More…)

By on November 23, 2015

2017 Cadillac XT5 luxury crossover

It didn’t take long after the North American debut of the 2017 Cadillac XT5 for people to ask, “What’s next?” for the crossover-starved luxury brand.

At the Los Angeles Auto Show, Cadillac chief Johan de Nysschen told Automotive News that the next Caddy crossover will come in two years and would likely slot below the XT5, in terms of name — but not necessarily in terms of size.

Cadillac’s next crossover, the XT4, will likely go on sale in 2018 with a bigger, three-row crossover coming one year later to bookend the XT5. The battleship-sized Escalade will remain, and a smaller, subcompact crossover could arrive at the end of the decade to give the brand a full range to offer a crossover-crazed market.  (Read More…)

By on November 19, 2015

IMG_3557

Volvo’s newest concept car is so advanced it doesn’t need sheet metal, wheels, doors, headlights or even an engine, man.

The Volvo Concept 26, unveiled Wednesday at the Los Angeles Auto Show, is the company’s vision for autonomous driving — which, at least publicly, it’s beating many of the big boys to the punch. The vision apparently includes a center-mounted tablet and an automatic 26-inch screen that emerges from the friggin’ dash.

(Read More…)

By on November 18, 2015

IMG_3602

You’ll excuse us if the new 2017 Mazda CX-9 photos we took lack a little substance. Mazda’s newest crossover was on lockdown by the automaker in Los Angeles on Tuesday, allegedly because competing engineers were a little to eager to snap pictures underneath the new girl’s sheet metal.

Whether we’re allowed to take pictures of it now or later, Mazda’s newest crossover (presumably) gets a whole host of the automaker’s latest and greatest including its new 2.5-liter, turbocharged SKYACTIV four cylinder that makes 250 horsepower* and 310 pound-feet of torque.

(Read More…)

By on November 18, 2015

IMG_3401

(The Sentra still really needs an SE-R model.)

Nissan unleashed its heavily refreshed 2016 Nissan Sentra on Tuesday at the Los Angeles Auto Show completing the overhaul to the automaker’s line of sedans. The compact sedan, which still uses the same 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine as the last model, sports a few of the Maxima’s designs and even fewer of the new Altima’s curves (we’ll have our first drive for that soon).

The company’s V-shaped grille and boomerang headlights are present, but some of the more unique features will have to wait for the Sentra’s complete overhaul a few years from now.

(Read More…)

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