2017 Auto Show Highlights

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceA Look Back
Another year of exciting auto shows has come to an end, and it’s time to reflect on the most impressive and significant vehicle reveals from the past 12 month. With hundreds of new models debuting in Detroit, Paris, New York, Geneva, Los Angeles and other locations around the world, the shows provided plenty of shiny new sheet metal to admire and desire. As we look forward to another exciting year of new-vehicle debuts, here’s a final look at the standout production vehicles of the 2017 worldwide auto show circuit.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceAria FXE — Los Angeles Auto Show
The Aria Group has an impressive 20-year history creating concept vehicles for a variety of car companies, and is even responsible for assembly of Singer Porsche 911s, but at this year’s Los Angeles Auto show the California company built one for themselves — the Aria FXE. With sharp angles and sleek lines, the FXE certainly looks the part of an exotic sports car. And it has the powerplant to back it up. According to Aria, the FXE boasts a hybrid powertrain consisting of a 6.2-liter supercharged V8 gas engine with dual electric motors in the front. Total output is a staggering 1150 horsepower and 1316 lb-ft of torque. That’s enough motivation to reach 60 mph in 2.7 seconds and top out at 210 mph. The company plans to build 400 of these American-made supercars. Normally we would be a bit skeptical about this type of claim — building a new vehicle is no simple task, and many have failed after showcasing a concept such as this — but Aria has the experience to deliver on its promises.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceAston Martin Vanquish S Volante — Geneva Motor Show
The Vanquish is the grand touring flagship of the Aston Martin line, and the Volante S is the ultimate open-top version. With a beautifully sculpted body trimmed in carbon fiber and new quad exhaust outlets, the Volante S looks fast even when standing still. The hidden potential under the hood complements the looks — a 6.0-liter V12 engine producing almost 600 horsepower. The convertible’s ZF Touchtronic III 8-speed automatic transmission has been tuned for faster shifts, and the suspension, dampers, spring rates and anti-roll bars have been set up to give the Vanquish S Volante added performance and handling while retaining the smooth ride expected of a grand touring car.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceAudi A8 — Frankfurt Motor Show
The flagship of the Audi lineup, the A8 moves into its fourth generation with updated styling and an impressive array of high-tech features and luxurious amenities. Up front, the new A8 features Audi’s signature Singleframe grille, but now the grille is wider and has a hexagonal shape. The stylish headlights integrate beautifully around the new grille, and are the start of sculpted lines that carry over the hood and along the beltline all the way to the rear of the car. The new A8 features two displays that work in conjunction with each other or separately, depending on the function in use. These large touchscreens replace the familiar rotary dials and buttons in the current Audi lineup. Although we’re not typically fans of touchscreens since they can be difficult to use while driving, the large icons on the main screen require pressure to activate, with haptic feedback making them feel like physical buttons. The new A8 went on sale in the fall in Europe, but will not be arriving in the U.S. until summer 2018 as a 2019 model.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceAudi RS 3 Sportback — Geneva Motor Show
Following the introduction of the RS 3 sedan in Paris last fall, Audi chose Geneva as the venue to showcase the high-performance 5-door. “The Audi RS 3 Sportback offers our customers an attractive introduction to the RS world,” said Stephan Winkelmann, CEO of Audi Sport GmbH. And the RS world is a fun place to inhabit — this compact model boasts a 2.5-liter 5-cylinder engine pumping out 400 horsepower and 354 lb-ft of torque. With traction courtesy of Audi’s legendary quattro all-wheel-drive system, the RS 3 Sportback can reach 62 mph (100 km/h) in 4.1 seconds and reach a top speed of 174 mph. With a wide track, sport suspension and large brakes, the RS 3 should hold its own against sports cars with much higher starting prices.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceBentley Continental GT — Frankfurt Motor Show
In Frankfurt Bentley introduced the third generation of the Continental GT, featuring all-new styling, technology and powertrain. Although the general shape of the Continental GT remains familiar, the body lines are more sculpted with better definition, thanks to a new process using Super Formed technology. On this third-gen Continental GT, a new larger grille is flanked by larger LED Matrix headlights that flow into the lines of the hood and fenders. To some these elements might seem familiar; this same look debuted at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show on the EXP 10 Speed 6 concept, which has been the influence and inspiration for many design cues on this newest Bentley. As expected, the Continental GT’s interior is all Bentley, employing the highest-quality materials with natural leather, sustainable wood veneers and polished chrome details. And in keeping with tradition, the Continental GT is as much about performance as it is about luxury. Under the sculpted hood resides an all-new version of Bentley’s 6.0-liter twin-turbo W12 engine. With 626 horsepower and 664 lb-ft of torque, the new Continental GT can reach 60 mph in a mere 3.7 seconds with a top speed of 207 mph.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceBentley Continental Supersports — Detroit Auto Show
As Bentley was phasing out the last-generation Continental, it debuted the Continental Supersports at the Detroit show earlier this year. Available as a 4-seat coupe or convertible, the Continental Supersports boasts a 6.0-liter twin-turbo W12 engine that generates an immense 700 horsepower and 750 lb-ft of torque. Teamed with a fast-shifting 8-speed automatic transmission and full-time all-wheel drive, the new Continental can reach 60 mph in a mere 3.4 seconds. Top speed is listed as 209 mph. This high-performance sports car features a specifically calibrated and updated version of the torque vectoring system first introduced on the Continental GT3-R. The Continental Supersports also features a lowered and stiffened dynamic suspension, but the automaker says this car still retains the luxurious ride expected of a Bentley. The seats and door panels feature a new diamond-quilted design, and checkered carbon-fiber fascia panels are a new addition to the existing list of 10 veneers and technical finishes available.

© Rod HatfieldBMW 5 Series — Detroit Auto Show
BMW’s midsize luxury sedan got a complete makeover for the 2018 model year. The seventh-generation 5 Series makes extensive use of aluminum, magnesium and high-strength steel to improve handling while reducing weight. The 5 Series is available in multiple configurations including the 530e iPerformance Sedan, 530e xDrive iPerformance Sedan and the M550i xDrive. Slightly larger than its predecessor, the new 5 Series features the familiar BMW kidney grille with integrated twin circular LED headlights. The two iPerformance sedans are equipped with a 4-cylinder 2.0-liter TwinPower Turbo engine teamed with an eDrive electric motor to produce a combined 248 horsepower. The top-level M550 ups the ante with an M Performance TwinPower Turbo 4.4-liter V8, good for 456 horsepower and 458 lb-ft of torque. The all-wheel-drive performance sedan can rocket to 60 mph in less than 4 seconds, and has an electronically-limited top speed of 155 mph.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceBMW i8 Roadster — Los Angeles Auto Show
A couple years ago when we first drove the BMW i8 it felt like we were driving the future. Now the future is available as a top-down roadster. BMW unveiled the all-new 2019 i8 Roadster at this year’s show in Los Angeles, adding an open-air experience to the hybrid i8. Equipped with an all-season fabric soft-top, the i8 Roadster can go from closed to open in 16 seconds while travelling at speeds up to 31 mph. As the roof opens, a rear window automatically rises to reduce wind turbulence in the cabin; however, the window can be lowered if more airflow is desired. The i8 Roadster (and coupe) are still powered by an electric motor teamed with a TwinPower Turbocharged 1.5-liter 3-cylinder engine. Both the motors receive power increases for the 2019 model year for a total of 369 horsepower. The gasoline engine gets a new sportier sound; the i8 can reach 60 mph in a mere 4.2 seconds. Electric-only range has also been improved to 18 miles. The new i8 Roadster will arrive in BMW showrooms next spring.

© Mike Meredith, Automotive Content ExperienceBMW M5 — Frankfurt Motor Show
One of BMW’s most revered cars since its inception in 1984, the sixth-generation 2018 M5 made its debut at this year’s Frankfurt show. This new M5 is the quickest and most technologically-advanced ever offered. With a 4.4-liter turbocharged V8 engine producing 600 horsepower, the new M5 will accelerate from zero to 60 mph in a mere 3.2 seconds with 124 mph arriving in 11.1 seconds. Top track speed is listed at 189 mph. All that power gets delivered to the ground through a new 8-speed M Steptronic transmission with Drivelogic and BMW’s new M xDrive all-wheel-drive system. The 2018 M5 is the first BMW ever offered with M xDrive, the M-specific all-wheel-drive system that has three modes: 4WD, 4WD Sport and 2WD with no dynamic stability control. Bespoke M compound brakes are standard, with optional M carbon ceramic brakes that provide a 50-pound reduction in unsprung weight. The 2018 M5 will go on sale in spring 2018; 400 M5 First Editions will be offered worldwide, with 50 available for the U.S. market.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceBuick Regal Sportback — New York Auto Show
Buick is expanding the Regal model line with the addition of the Regal Sportback, a sleek new 5-door with an elegant design, sleek profile and the added versatility of a hatchback. With the second-row seat in place, the Regal Sportback offers a plentiful 31.5 cubic feet of cargo space — more than twice as much as the 2017 Regal — and it increases to 60.7 cubic feet with the rear seat folded. Power comes from a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that produces 250 horsepower and 260 lb-ft of torque, combined with a 9-speed automatic transmission for the front-wheel-drive version. When all-wheel drive is added, torque increases to 295 lb-ft delivered through an 8-speed automatic transmission. Safety innovations include a Buick-first active hood pedestrian safety system, Front Pedestrian Braking and Lane Keep Assist. The standard active hood pedestrian safety system senses the imminent impact of a pedestrian between 16–30 mph and uses a pyrotechnic actuator to lift the back of the hood up about 4 inches to lessen the impact and potentially reduce injury.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceBuick Regal TourX — New York Auto Show
Buick showcased an all-new model at this year’s New York show, expanding the Regal lineup with the very stylish Regal TourX. Along the lines of the Subaru Outback or Volvo V60 Cross Country, the TourX features full-time all-wheel drive and a raised ground clearance to handle more than just rough pavement. “Regal TourX is a crossover in the truest sense of the word, with the drive dynamics of a car and the versatility of an SUV,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president, global Buick and GMC. The hands-free tailgate, versatile cargo area and available roof rack make the TourX quite useful for whatever adventure the driver has in mind. Powering the new TourX is a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that generates 250 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque. A standard 8-speed automatic transmission and intelligent AWD with active twin-clutch distribute power to the ground.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceChevrolet Corvette ZR1 — Los Angeles Auto Show
The Corvette resides at the top of the Chevrolet lineup as the brand’s most powerful offering. That power bar has just been raised with the introduction of the all-new 2019 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1. The ZR1 Coupe had a soft debut at a special event in Dubai, but Chevrolet fittingly chose the 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show in sunny Southern California as the venue to roll out the ZR1 Convertible. This is the first convertible version of the ZR1 since the original in 1970. Given the new ZR1’s strong aluminum chassis, minimal structural changes were required to create the convertible, adding only 60 pounds overall. The new ZR1’s LT5 6.2-liter supercharged V8 engine rates a stunning 755 horsepower and 715 lb-ft of torque. With that much power, the ZR1 boasts the highest output ever for a Chevrolet production vehicle. Top speed is expected to exceed 210 mph. The Corvette ZR1 receives an all-new front fascia that functions beyond mere styling. The new nose is designed to channel more air for better engine and drivetrain cooling. To create space for the supercharger/intercooler assembly, the special carbon fiber hood is open in the middle. The all-new 2019 Corvette ZR1 goes on sale next spring at a Manufacturer’s Suggested Retail Price of $119,995 for the coupe. The convertible MSRP will start at $123,995.

© Rod HatfieldChevrolet Traverse — Detroit Auto Show
Chevrolet introduced the all-new 2018 Traverse midsize crossover earlier this year with a bold new look that follows Chevy’s larger full-size SUVs. With a focus on interior volume, the new Traverse has a longer wheelbase and overall length than the outgoing model, and is expected to deliver best-in-class third-row legroom while offering up to 8-passenger capacity. Two new trim levels are added for 2018: RS and High Country. The sporty RS package includes blacked-out exterior elements, a black chrome grille, a black bowtie and 20-inch wheels, while the luxury High Country includes premium features and technology such as Loft Brown leather trim with suede accents, 20-inch polished wheels, High Country badging, D-Optic headlights and power-folding third-row seats. The standard engine is a new 3.6-liter V6 teamed with a 9-speed automatic transmission, with either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. The Traverse RS is offered exclusively with a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine that delivers more torque than the V6, also paired with a 9-speed automatic.

© Mike Meredith, Automotive Content ExperienceDodge Challenger SRT Demon — New York Auto Show
Dodge stole the show in New York with the introduction of the limited-edition Challenger SRT Demon, powered by a supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI Demon V8 engine that produces 840 horsepower and 770 lb-ft or torque — the highest horsepower V8 engine ever offered in a production car. Dodge claims the Challenger SRT Demon is the fastest production car ever — certified in the quarter-mile by the National Hot Rod Association with an incredibly quick elapsed time of 9.65 seconds with a trap speed of 140 miles per hour. The Demon’s powerplant is based on the same architecture as the 707-horsepower HEMI Hellcat engine, although more than 50 percent of the components have been upgraded. The widest Challenger ever, the SRT Demon adds factory-installed fender flares that increase the overall width by 3.5 inches — required to cover the lightweight 18×11-inch “Hole-shot” wheels with specifically-designed and Demon-branded 315/40R18 Nitto NT05R drag radial tires front and rear. The SRT Demon also adds a wide Air Grabber hood scoop, the largest functional hood scoop for a production car. Inside, the Challenger SRT Demon focuses on the driver and — in the interest of weight savings — the standard configuration deletes the front passenger seat, rear passenger seat, corresponding seat belts and the trunk carpeting. Buyers have the option of adding the front passenger seat, rear seat and trunk carpeting for $1 each.

© Rod HatfieldDodge Challenger GT AWD — Detroit Auto Show
Dodge continues to iterate on the exciting Challenger lineup, showcasing the all-new Challenger GT at this year’s Detroit show. The Challenger GT is the first 2-door American muscle car to feature all-wheel drive, providing the sport coupe all-weather capability. With a 305-horsepower 3.6-liter V6 under the hood, the Challenger GT could prove to be great fun when the snow flies. The GT features Dodge’s high-performance all-wheel-drive system also found in the all-wheel-drive Charger. This technologically-advanced system includes an active transfer case as well as front-axle disconnect to improve both performance and fuel economy. Under normal driving conditions, all the engine’s torque is directed to the rear wheels, but when sensors indicate the need for additional traction, the system automatically engages all-wheel drive.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceFerrari 812 Superfast — Geneva Motor Show
Throughout its storied history, Ferrari has affixed the Superfast moniker to a select number of vehicles, and this new Ferrari certainly deserves the designation. Billed as the most powerful and fastest Ferrari in the marque’s history, the 812 Superfast boasts a new 6.5-liter V12 engine that produces a mind-boggling 789 horsepower at 8500 rpm. With a quick-shifting dual-clutch gearbox, the front-engine 812 Superfast reaches 62 mph (100 km/h) in a mere 2.9 seconds. With enough road (or track) ahead, this latest Ferrari will top out somewhere north of 211 mph. The silhouette of the 812 Superfast evokes a sleek fastback; Ferrari says it’s reminiscent of the 1969 365 GTB4. At the rear are four round taillights — along with four exhaust outlets — that contribute to the 812’s wide stance. When it arrives, the 812 Superfast will roll from the factory in a special new color — Rosso Settanta — to honor the company’s 70th anniversary.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceFerrari Portofino — Frankfurt Motor Show
An all-new convertible graced the Ferrari stand at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The Portofino replaces the aging California and takes its spot as the entry-level model in the Ferrari lineup. The Portofino sports the same turbocharged 3.9-liter V8 engine as the California T; however, the engine has been updated to produce close to 600 horsepower — an increase of almost 50 ponies. Performance is at a level appropriate for a Ferrari: a sprint to 60 mph takes less than 3.5 seconds, while top speed is documented as approaching 200 mph. To help handle the power, an electronic rear differential improves mechanical grip and provides better control when the car is at its limits. The Portofino employs a retractable hardtop that not only adds stiffness and security, when closed it creates a sleek fastback style. Overall styling for Portofino is more in line with the rest of the Ferrari lineup, looking much more modern than the outgoing California. This includes a larger grille, new LED headlights and new taillights. Ferrari’s new Portofino convertible seats four; however, rear-seat use should probably be limited to short trips. Portofino also has a new 10.2-inch display screen, a new steering wheel and 18-way power-adjustable front seats.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceFord Expedition — Chicago Auto Show
The all-new 2018 Ford Expedition appeared at the 2017 Chicago show with a new high-strength, aluminum-alloy body and redesigned high-strength steel frame. Expedition has a more powerful turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 engine with standard Auto Start-Stop, combined with a new 10-speed automatic transmission. Off-road capability is improved with a newly available electronic limited-slip differential when equipped with Intelligent AWD. The 2018 model has more than 40 features and driver-assist technologies new to Expedition, including wireless charging, a Wi-Fi hotspot, SYNC 3, SYNC Connect, power in every row, and a Panoramic Vista Roof. Expedition’s flexible seating includes second-row tip-and-slide seats that provide easy access to the third row even with child seats installed.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceHonda Clarity Series — New York Auto Show
Honda introduced two new Clarity models in New York: the 2017 Honda Clarity Electric and the 2018 Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid, joining the 2017 Honda Clarity Fuel Cell that launched in December 2016. The 2018 Honda Clarity Plug-In Hybrid features an all-electric range of 47 miles. For longer trips, the Clarity Plug-In Hybrid has a 1.5-liter Atkinson-cycle 4-cylinder engine that generates electricity and under some conditions will power the car directly with the total driving range reported at 340 miles. Completing the Clarity Series of electrified vehicles, the Honda Clarity Electric is an all-electric vehicle powered by a 161-horsepower (120-kilowatt) electric motor producing 221 lb-ft of torque, storing power in a 25.5-kWh battery pack. The Clarity Electric can by fully charged in just over three hours at 240 volts and using DC fast charging can reach an 80 percent charge in just 30 minutes. The driving range on a full charge is listed at 89 miles. The EPA fuel economy rating for Clarity Electric is 126 city / 103 highway / 114 combined MPGe. Both the Clarity Plug-In Hybrid and the Clarity Electric offer three selectable driving modes: Normal, Econ and Sport to choose between optimal economy or improved performance. The Clarity Electric is available via a lease program in California and Oregon.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceHonda Civic Type R — Geneva Motor Show
After Honda’s relentless teasing via the Type R concept over the last year, we finally got to see the final product at this year’s Geneva Motor Show. The Civic Type R looks much like the concept with aggressive front-end styling, a hood scoop and a large rear spoiler — Honda even kept the three-outlet exhaust system. With chassis and suspension upgrades designed to make it track-ready, the Type R sports a 2.0-liter turbocharged engine producing 306 horsepower. “The fastest, most powerful Honda ever sold in America, the Type R caps off the incredible success story of our 10th generation Civic lineup,” said Jeff Conrad, senior vice president & general manager of the Honda Division, American Honda Motor Co., Inc. The long-awaited Civic Type R went on sale earlier this year.

© Rod HatfieldHonda Odyssey — Detroit Auto Show
One of the most popular minivans on the market, the all-new 2018 Odyssey debuted at last-January’s Detroit show. With an expressive new exterior design, the 2018 Odyssey features the new “Magic Slide” second-row seat system that offers multiple seat configurations and third-row access options. The center second-row seat can be removed, or the outboard seats can be moved laterally between five positions for third-row access. The 2018 Odyssey is powered by a 280-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 engine with a standard 9-speed automatic transmission or a 10-speed automatic for upper trim levels. The new Odyssey features advanced connectivity and entertainment with new Display Audio, CabinWatch, CabinTalk & streaming video with 4G LTE Wi-Fi. The new CabinControl app enables smartphone control of key vehicle systems as well as audio and rear-seat entertainment features. Inside, the new Odyssey features high-grade materials including a soft-touch instrument panel. The instrument panel incorporates a new 7-inch, full-color TFT display; an 8-inch high-resolution Display Audio touchscreen interface is available for EX and above.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceHyundai Elantra GT — Chicago Auto Show
Hyundai’s latest model in the updated Elantra lineup made its debut at the 2017 Chicago Auto Show. The all-new 2018 Hyundai Elantra GT offers sportier looks with added versatility. Built on an all-new platform, the Elantra GT is stiffer, stronger and lighter than the previous generation. This is largely because half the structure is now advanced high-strength steel — nearly double the outgoing generation. Two different versions of the Elantra GT are available: GT and GT Sport. The GT gets power from a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine putting out 162 horsepower, while the GT Sport upgrades to a 1.6-liter turbocharged powerplant that produces 201 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque. Buyers can choose between a 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox or a 6-speed manual transmission.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceHyundai Kona — Los Angeles Auto Show
Hyundai adds a new compact crossover to the U.S. market with the Kona, featuring a bold, expressive design and fun-to-drive character in a small, entry-level model. The front-end design incorporates LED headlights and daytime running lights, and LED taillights bring up the rear. The aggressively-shaped black fender flares extend into the headlights, taillights and rocker panels. Hyundai offers two powertrain options for the Kona: a standard 2.0-liter that produces 147 horsepower and 132 lb-ft of torque mated to a 6-speed automatic with SHIFTRONIC manual shift mode. An optional 1.6-liter turbocharged direct-injection engine produces 175 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque, paired with a 7-speed EcoShift dual-clutch transmission. Kona is offered in bright color choices and available contrasting roof colors.

© Mike Meredith, Automotive Content ExperienceInfiniti QX50 — Los Angeles Auto Show
At this year’s Los Angeles show Infiniti debuted the 2019 QX50 midsize luxury crossover carrying a new interpretation of Infiniti’s Powerful Elegance design language, remaining true to the designs of the QX50 Concept and QX Sport Inspiration. The new design features a strong shoulder line that flows from the headlights, along the bottom of the clamshell hood and along the full length of the car, anchored by the signature Infiniti double-arch grille up front. Power comes from a 2.0-liter VC-Turbo engine, which is the first production-ready engine that adjusts compression ratio to optimize both power and efficiency. Combined with a continuously variable transmission, the VC-Turbo is rated at 268 horsepower and 280 lb-ft of torque, and is expected to be rated at 27 mpg combined with front-wheel drive and 26 mpg combined with all-wheel drive.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceInfiniti QX80 — Los Angeles Auto Show
Infiniti’s full-size SUV gets redesigned for 2018 with inspiration from the QX80 Monograph concept and a bold new take on Infiniti’s Powerful Elegance design language. The hood sits higher and leans forward for a more squared-off, vertical front end and a longer, flatter hood. Inside, the QX80 features high-quality materials and a handcrafted experience. The Infiniti QX80 draws power from a 5.6-liter V8 engine that produces 400 ponies and 413 lb-ft of torque, combined with a 7-speed automatic transmission that features Adaptive Shift Control and manual shift mode with Downshift Rev Matching. In 2-wheel-drive configuration, the 2018 QX80’s fuel economy is rated at 14 mpg city, 20 mpg highway and 16 mpg combined. Four-wheel-drive variants are capable of 13 mpg city, 19 mpg highway and 15 mpg combined.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceJaguar E-PACE — Frankfurt Motor Show
Following the successful launch of the larger F-PACE SUV, Jaguar adds the 5-passenger compact performance E-PACE to its lineup. The design resembles the F-PACE, combining sport sedan styling with the practicality and versatility of an all-wheel-drive compact utility vehicle. The E-PACE features lightweight suspension, standard all-wheel drive and an available Active Dynamics package. Standard JaguarDrive control offers the choice of four driving modes: Normal, Dynamic, ECO and Rain / Ice / Snow. The E-PACE draws power from a choice of two turbocharged 2.0-liter Ingenium gasoline engines, producing either 246 horsepower or 296 horsepower, both combined with a ZF 9-speed automatic transmission. The latest connectivity technology offers streaming for up to 8 devices with the optional 4G Wi-Fi hotspot. A 12.3-inch full-color TFT display and head-up display are optional. LED headlights are similar to the F-TYPE sports car design with slim bladelike LED rear lights. The upper trim levels include Jaguar J-blade daytime running lights around the outer edges of the headlights.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceJaguar F-TYPE — New York Auto Show
The 2018 Jaguar F-TYPE debuted at the New York Auto Show with a new look, new powertrain options and new standard technology. For the first time, the F-TYPE is offered with a 4-cylinder engine — a 296-horsepower turbocharged 2.0-liter teamed with the 8-speed Quickshift transmission. Peak torque is produced as low as 1,500 rpm, helping the 4-cylinder F-type reach 60 mph in 5.4 seconds. Top track speed is 155 mph. The F-TYPE continues to be available with supercharged V6 and V8 engine options, including the 575-horsepower F-TYPE SVR. Design updates for 2018 include new full-LED headlights, a new front bumper and new air intakes. New lightweight slimline seats offer improved ergonomics and comfort but also provide a weight savings of more than 17 pounds. A new F-TYPE 400 SPORT special edition is offered only for the 2018 model year powered by a 400-horsepower version of the supercharged 3.0-liter V6 with suspension updates and special 20-inch wheels.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceJaguar XF Sportbrake — Frankfurt Motor Show
Many car companies offer wagons in Europe, but in America the crossover has all but extinguished any interest in wagons. That said, we’re happy to report that the wagon is not completely dead in America, and a perfect specimen will be arriving later this year: The Jaguar XF Sportbrake. “As with the XF sedan, every line on the Sportbrake serves a clear purpose, creating a fast sweeping silhouette,” said Jaguar Director of Design Ian Callum. “This gives the car a sense of speed and a very dynamic appearance. As a result, I think it looks just as sporty as the sedan, if not more so.” More than just a pretty face, the Sportbrake brings additional utility to the sporty XF lineup. With 31.7 cubic feet of cargo space behind the seats, that number can be expanded to almost 70 cubic feet with the rear seats folded flat. Naturally, there’s also plenty of power under the hood — the Sportbrake is equipped with Jaguar’s supercharged V6 engine that produces 380 horsepower. Jag’s intelligent all-wheel-drive system will be standard on all variants. The XF Sportbrake is slated to arrive in Jaguar showrooms soon, marking the first time an XF wagon will be offered in the U.S.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceJeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk — New York Auto Show
There’s no question that Jeep is the master of handling just about any off-road terrain. At this year’s New York Auto Show, Jeep proved that it can handle the track as well with the all-new supercharged Grand Cherokee Trackhawk. Taking a page from the Hellcat guide to horsepower, the new Grand Cherokee Trackhawk boasts a supercharged 6.2-liter V8 engine putting out a ridiculous 707 horsepower and 645 lb-ft of torque. With that much power on tap driving all four wheels, the acceleration figures are quite astounding. The Grand Cherokee Trackhawk will hit 60 mph in a mere 3.5 seconds. For a little perspective, a Porsche Cayenne Turbo S is about three-tenths slower to perform the same sprint. With a top speed of 180 mph and the ability to reach a quarter mile in 11.6 seconds, Jeep claims the Trackhawk is the most powerful and quickest SUV on the market.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceJeep Wrangler — Los Angeles Auto Show
In Los Angeles the Jeep brand revealed the next generation of its most iconic model, the Wrangler. Tracing its roots back to the original World War II U.S. military vehicle, the 2018 Wrangler stays true to its heritage in design and off-road capability while evolving with new fuel-efficient powertrains, improved on-road dynamics and advanced safety and technology. The 2018 Wrangler retains its 7-slot grille and round headlights, although the grille is taller and wider, and the outer edges now trace around the shape of the headlights, reminiscent of the Jeep CJ. Overall, the new Wrangler body is more aerodynamic, and the windshield can still be folded flat to the hood. Two hardtops, a new Sunrider soft-top and a new Sky One-Touch power top, are offered. Both 2-door and 4-door versions are available in Sport, Sport S, Rubicon and Sahara trim levels. The 2018 Wrangler continues to have advanced off-road capability with two 4-wheel-drive systems and — for the first time — a 2-speed transfer case with full-time 4-wheel drive. Three engines will be available starting with the 285-horsepower 3.6-liter V6, a new 270-horsepower turbocharged 4-cylinder and 3.0-liter EcoDiesel with 442 lb-ft of torque that will arrive in 2019.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceKia Niro PHEV — Los Angeles Auto Show
Kia introduced the 2018 Niro Plug-In Electric Hybrid at the Los Angeles Auto Show, the third plug-in electric model from Kia. With an EPA-estimated electric-only range of 26 miles, the Niro PHEV is rated at 105 MPGe with overall EPA ratings of 48 mpg city / 44 mpg highway / 46 mpg combined. The Niro PHEV is powered by a 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine teamed with a 60-horsepower electric motor for a total combined output of 139 horsepower and 195 lb-ft of torque. The Niro PHEV has the same 6-speed dual-clutch transmission as the Niro, with four drive modes: EV, Hybrid, Eco or Sport. The higher capacity batter is stored under the cargo floor and rear seat, retaining the same amount of cargo capacity as the Niro Hybrid.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceKia Sorento — Los Angeles Auto Show
Kia’s largest crossover, the 7-passenger 3-row Sorento is refreshed for 2019 with subtle design changes, a revised interior and new technology. The new front-end design includes a more detailed grille, a new bumper design and new headlights with full LED lighting for SX and SXL trims. The redesigned fog lights use projection bulbs for EX and SX trims and LEDs for SXL. At the rear, the Sorento receives a new bumper, new exhaust tip and new taillight design with LEDs for EX trim and higher. Inside, the Sorento features a revised instrument cluster with new graphics, a new steering wheel, a new shift knob, revised air vents and center stack design. A third-row seat is now standard for all trim levels. New technology includes Driver Assistance Systems, Harman-Kardon audio with Quantum Logic and wireless phone charging.

© Rod HatfieldKia Stinger — Detroit Auto Show
Arguably one of the stars of the 2017 Detroit show, the Kia Stinger is the Korean brand’s first-ever performance sedan. Based on the GT concept shown at the Frankfurt Motor Show in 2011, the Stinger carries through much of the styling and ideas found in that original GT. Stinger retains the signature Kia grille, but the design features a wide stance, short front overhang, steeply-raked windshield, vented hood, sleek LED headlights and bold fenders. The quad oval exhaust pipes will indicate to anyone following that this is a performance car. Two different powertrains are available, including a 3.3-liter twin-turbo V6 that produces 365 horsepower and 376 lb-ft of torque. With the larger engine, the Stinger GT can hit 60 mph in under 5 seconds with a top speed of 167 mph — figures not typically associated with a Kia automobile. Stinger will also be Kia’s first model to offer rear- or all-wheel drive.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceLamborghini Aventador S Roadster — Frankfurt
Nothing makes a bold statement like a Lamborghini — especially the flagship Aventador. Any Aventador turns heads, but here in Frankfurt the Italian car company turned up the “look at me” factor with a new Aventador S Roadster. A futuristic design that has creases and angles in myriad directions, the S Roadster clearly makes a bold statement. The engine cover has two windows so passersby can gawk at the massive V12 engine. The 2-seater offers a variety of interior treatments including leather, Alcantara and carbon fiber trim. As with any Lamborghini, the Aventador S Roadster is as powerful as it looks. Lurking behind the passenger cabin is a 6.5-liter V12 engine producing 740 horsepower and 509 lb-ft of torque. Power is delivered to all four wheels via a “robotized” 7-speed gearbox that performs gear changes as quickly as 50 milliseconds. With the quick transmission and powerful engine, the Aventador S will achieve 100 km/h (62 mph) in a mere 3 seconds. In 6 more seconds 124 mph will flash by. With the driver’s right foot planted on the floor, this Aventador will eventually reach 217 mph. Deliveries of the new Aventador S Roadster will begin February 2018 with a base price of $460,247.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceLamborghini Huracan Performante — Geneva Motor Show
Granted, there are no models in the Lamborghini stable that aren’t incredibly sleek and fast, but periodically the Italian automaker introduces a special variant designed for even more extreme performance. At this year’s Geneva Motor Show, that model would be the Huracan Performante. “The Huracan Performante is the convergence of technological developments to produce a car delivering perfect performance,” says Automobili Lamborghini Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Stefano Domenicali. Utilizing forged carbon fiber to reduce weight by almost 90 pounds versus the standard Huracan, the Performante uses active aerodynamics to improve performance on the road and the track. The Huracan’s 5.2-liter V10 generates 640 horsepower. These changes have delivered the desired effect — Lamborghini recently reported that the Performante completed a lap of the legendary Nurburgring in 6:52.01, making it one of the fastest production cars ever.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceLand Rover Range Rover Velar — Geneva Motor Show
In Geneva Land Rover expanded its lineup of luxurious, capable SUVs by introducing the all-new Range Rover Velar. The name has significant meaning, even if a bit obscure — Velar was the code name used on the original pre-production Range Rovers of the 1960s. Slotting between the Evoque and Range Rover Sport, the “Velar brings unprecedented glamour, modernity and elegance to the Range Rover family,” according to Land Rover Chief Design Officer Gerry McGovern. In addition to its expected off-road prowess, the Velar features premium seating for five. A standout feature is the all-new infotainment system called Touch Pro Duo, designed to make in-car technology clearer, quicker and more enjoyable to use. The system features two high-definition touchscreens and learns from the user, anticipating needs to provide what the user wants, when it’s wanted. The new Range Rover Velar arrived in U.S. showrooms earlier this year with a starting price of $49,900.

© Rod HatfieldLexus LS 500 — Detroit Auto Show
Toyota’s luxury brand took the wraps off the latest version of its flagship LS at the 2017 Detroit show, and it’s arguably the most dramatic redesign the car has had in its 28-year run. Longer, wider and lower than its predecessor, the all-new 2018 Lexus LS 500 features coupe-like lines and showcases the latest iteration of the trademark large spindle grille. The new platform that debuted with the LC 500 coupe underpins the new LS sedan. This — combined with considerable weight savings —provides a smoother, quieter ride as well as better handling than the previous version. The new LS 500 sports an all-new 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 engine rated at 415 horsepower and 442 lb-ft of torque. Teamed with a quick-shifting 10-speed automatic transmission, the LS 500 has enough power to push this big luxury sedan to 60 mph in about 4.5 seconds. Inside, passengers will find the level of comfort, luxury and technology expected of a Lexus flagship.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceLexus RX L — Los Angeles Auto Show
Lexus debuted an all-new three-row version of the popular RX midsize luxury crossover at the Los Angeles show. Standard 7-seat configuration includes a 40 / 20 / 40 split-bench second-row seat, and an available 6-occupant version adds second-row captain’s chairs. Leather seat trim for the first two rows, tri-zone climate control and a power-fold third-row seat are all standard. To add the third-row seating, Lexus extended the body 4.3 inches and changed the angle of the tailgate for improved headroom. The RX L is offered in RX 350L and Rx 450hL trim levels. The RX 350L is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 engine that produces 290 horsepower and 263 lb-ft of torque with either front-wheel drive or available Dynamic Torque Control all-wheel drive. The RX 450hL is powered by a hybrid system combining the 3.5-liter V6 with two electric motors for a total output of 308 horsepower. The standard all-wheel drive uses a separate electric motor at the rear to drive the rear wheels when conditions demand it.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceLincoln Nautilus — Los Angeles Auto Show
Lincoln debuted a new midsize luxury crossover in Los Angeles called the Nautilus. Replacing the MKX in the Lincoln lineup, the Nautilus draws strongly on styling cues from the flagship Continental sedan and the full-size Navigator SUV, including a bold signature grille and beltline trim. Acoustic glass reduces wind noise and Ultra Comfort seats can be adjusted up to 22 ways. Standard power for this new luxury SUV comes from a 245-horsepower 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine, and an available 2.7-liter turbocharged V6 produces 335 horsepower and 380 lb-ft of torque. Both engines get combined with an 8-speed automatic transmission and include Auto Start-Stop. New driver assistance technologies include lane-centering and evasive steer assist. The Nautilus appears to represent a new naming direction for Lincoln, finally abandoning the confusing MK nomenclature.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceLincoln Navigator — New York Auto Show
The wraps came off the all-new 2018 Lincoln Navigator at this year’s New York Auto Show, and the new model hasn’t strayed much from the look of the concept that was introduced just one year ago. The large grille immediately grabs attention, and when the driver walks up to the Navigator, the Lincoln logo lights up softly along with LED lighting that illuminates the ground around the vehicle. Inside, ambient lighting accents all three seat rows at night, while during the day a panoramic sunroof ensures that even those sitting in the third row don’t feel claustrophobic. The big Lincoln has big power to match — a twin-turbo V6 engine that puts out 450 horsepower, delivered through a new 10-speed automatic transmission. Made to be luxurious as well as family friendly, the new Navigator offers multiple USB ports, wireless phone charging, Wi-Fi hotspot as well as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. A rear-seat entertainment system is also available featuring two 10-inch display screens.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMazda Mazda6 — Los Angeles Auto Show
The Los Angeles show hosted the introduction of an updated Mazda6. The flagship sedan of the Japanese automaker’s lineup, the Mazda6 gets updated styling as well as a new powerplant designed to elevate it to what the brand calls “Mazda Premium.” The 2018 Mazda6 now features a revised chassis designed to provide a more comfortable ride, better handling and a quieter interior. The most obvious update is a new grille flanked by standard LED headlights and integrated fog lights that give the car a wide stance. Also available is a gorgeous Soul Red Crystal paint. The Mazda6 will be available with the SKYACTIV-G 2.5T engine first introduced in the CX-9. This turbocharged 4-cylinder engine puts out 250 horsepower and 310 lb-ft of torque at just 2000 rpm for excellent performance.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMcLaren 720S — Geneva Motor Show
For the first time since McLaren returned to the sports car market six years ago, the brand is introducing a second generation for one of its models. The latest entry in the Super Series is the all-new 720S, which is lighter, stiffer and more powerful than the outgoing 650S it replaces. McLaren’s stated goal for the 720S was to combine the refinement of the 570GT with the extreme performance of the 675LT. The result is a wider range of abilities, providing excellent performance on both road and track. At the heart of the 720S beats a new 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 engine, placed — of course — behind the cabin. As the name indicates, power is rated at 720 PS (710 horsepower). Performance stats are quite impressive: 62 mph arrives in 2.9 seconds, 124 mph in 7.8 seconds and at 21.4 seconds the speedometer will be eclipsing 186 mph. Maximum velocity is approximately 212 mph, and the 720S can blow through a quarter mile in a mere 10.3 seconds. The new 720S started arriving in showrooms this summer with a starting price of $284,475.

© Rod HatfieldMercedes-Benz AMG GT — Detroit Auto Show
Mercedes-AMG celebrated 50 years of performance with a new addition to the AMG GT line of sports cars, as well as updates to all AMG GT and AMG GT S variants. The new 2018 AMG GT C Coupe was initially offered exclusively as the Edition 50 to commemorate the golden anniversary of AMG, which was founded in 1967. The U.S. market was allocated 50 coupes and 50 roadsters of the AMG GT C Edition 50. The Edition 50 gets finished in Graphite Grey Magno with black chrome accents and black-surface AMG forged wheels. All 2018 AMG GT variants will include the AMG Panamericana Grille, which pays tribute to Mercedes-Benz motorsports history with 15 vertical bars similar to the Mercedes-AMG GT3 race car. All AMG GT versions are powered by a 4.0-liter Biturbo V8 engine with a different output for each level. For 2018 the AMG GT and AMG GT S both receive power increases, with the GT now rated at 469 horsepower (13 additional) while the GT S gets rated at 515 horsepower (12 additional). The GT C produces 550 horsepower and 502 lb-ft of torque, while the GT R tops the range at 577 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMercedes-AMG E63 S Wagon — Geneva Motor Show
We admit to a certain bias when it comes to the E63 S Wagon, since it is one of our dream cars. With a near-perfect blend of luxury, performance, style and utility, this AMG wagon can fit any number of lifestyles and needs. There’s plenty of cargo space — increased by folding the rear seats — and with Mercedes’ 4Matic all-wheel-drive system, the E63 can handle all kinds of inclement weather. What really makes this luxury wagon a standout is its handcrafted AMG 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 engine under the hood, which generates an extreme 603 horsepower and 627 lb-ft of torque. Sprints to 60 mph take 3.4 seconds and top speed is limited to 180 mph. Both figures put the wagon in the company of some rather exotic sports cars.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMercedes-AMG Project ONE — Frankfurt Motor Show
In Frankfurt Mercedes-AMG celebrated the AMG brand’s 50 anniversary in proper fashion with the introduction of an extreme supersports car, the Project ONE. This 2-seat coupe borrows from Mercedes’ extensive Formula One experience in what is basically a street-legal race car. When most car companies refer to bringing their racing technology and experience to the street, it usually isn’t as literal as what Mercedes-AMG has done. The Project ONE employs a full-fledged Formula One hybrid drive system consisting of a 1.6-liter direct-injection V6 engine that uses an electrically-assisted turbocharger. This gets teamed with an additional electric motor linked directly to the driveshaft, as well as two electric motors fitted to the front axle that provide acceleration and braking at each wheel for better stability and all-wheel-drive control. This extremely complex system of electric motors, gas engine and turbocharger comes together to produce more than 1000 horsepower. Although we typically tell you how fast a car such as the Project ONE would reach 60 mph, Mercedes-AMG is only reporting that this extreme supercar will reach 124 mph (200 km/h) in less than 6 seconds. Top speed is reported to be 217 mph. When it goes on sale only 275 will be built, and each will cost €2.275 million (US$2.72 million).

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMercedes-Benz CLS — Los Angeles Auto Show
The idea of a sedan with the lines of a coupe has become a common design style, but in 2003 Mercedes-Benz arguably started this trend with the introduction of the CLS. At this year’s 2017 Los Angeles Auto Show, the German car company took the wraps off an all-new third generation of the groundbreaking CLS. Still exhibiting the 4-door coupe look, the new 2019 CLS showcases a new Mercedes-Benz design with a new forward-slanting grille flanked by low-set headlights that seem to wrap around the corners. Inside are many of the features and displays found in the recently-launched new S-Class. Initially available as the CLS450, the new car’s power will come from an all-new 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder engine that features EQ Boost — an integrated starter/generator — as well as a 48-volt onboard electrical system. The new motor produces 362 horsepower and 369 lb-ft of torque, while the EQ Boost can bring in an additional 21 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque over short periods of time. This extra boost can aid in acceleration or allow the gas engine to shut off when coasting for better fuel savings — basically providing benefits typically only possible with a hybrid. The new CLS is expected to go on sale in fall 2018.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMercedes-Benz E-Class Cabriolet — Geneva Motor Show
With the introduction of the E-Class Cabriolet in Geneva, Mercedes-Benz completes the redesign of the entire E-Class lineup. The E-Class utilizes a classic soft-top rather than a heavier, more expensive hardtop. The top is multilayered and insulated to keep the interior quiet, even when driving at high speeds. The top on the E-Class Cab can be raised or lowered in 20 seconds at speeds up to 30 mph. With the top raised, the cabriolet has a similar silhouette to the E-Class Coupe. The E-Class also features the signature M-B Airscarf, which circulates warm air near the neck when ambient temperatures are low. Mercedes now offers the E-Class Cabriolet with 4Matic all-wheel drive for the first time ever.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceMitsubishi Eclipse Cross — Los Angeles Auto Show
A new compact crossover in the Mitsubishi lineup, the Eclipse Cross made its North American debut in Los Angeles. The Eclipse name was previously used on a sport coupe in the Mitsubishi lineup, so it was somewhat surprising to see the name return on a crossover SUV. The 2018 Eclipse Cross combines coupe styling with crossover utility, and is powered by a 1.5-liter direct-injection turbocharged engine that produces 152 horsepower and 184 lb-ft of torque. The Eclipse Cross features Super All-Wheel Control that integrates the vehicle dynamics control systems (including stability control, anti-lock brakes and active yaw control) with the all-wheel-drive system to control torque supplied to each of the four wheels.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceNissan Kicks — Los Angeles Auto Show
The all-new 2018 Nissan Kicks debuted in Los Angeles, joining the Nissan lineup as a new entry crossover alongside Rogue and Rogue Sport. Its unique styling adds a sporty flare with a tall crossover stance, bold fender arches, a V-Motion grille, a floating roof, boomerang shaped taillights, standard Intelligent Auto Headlights and available LED low-beam headlights with LED accents. The entirely-new Nissan Kicks derives power from a 1.6-liter engine rated at 125 horsepower and 115 lb-ft of torque, teamed with an Xtronic continuously-variable transmission. Fuel economy is expected to be 33 mpg combined. Automatic Emergency Braking is standard and Intelligent Around View Monitor is available as an option. Nissan Kicks is scheduled to go on sale in June 2018.

© Rod HatfieldNissan Rogue Sport — Detroit Auto Show
The Rogue midsize crossover is Nissan’s best-selling model in the U.S. Building on that success, the Japanese automaker revealed a new compact crossover, Rogue Sport, based on the same Rogue platform. The new compact 5-passenger Rogue Sport rides on a wheelbase that is 2.3 inches shorter; the overall length is 12.1 inches shorter. The styling of Rogue Sport is very similar to the Rogue, including the sporty V-motion grille and LED daytime running lights. Rogue Sport is powered by a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine producing 141 horsepower and 147 lb-ft of torque, combined with an Xtronic CVT and front- or all-wheel drive. Rogue Sport is offered in three trim levels: S, SV and SL. Although the Rogue Sport is new to the U.S. market, it is also sold in other markets as the Nissan Qashqai. Based on sales in those other markets, Nissan expects the Rogue Sport to do well in the U.S.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePorsche 718 GTS — Los Angeles Auto Show
With added power and performance, the 2018 Porsche 718 Boxster and 718 Cayman GTS trims debuted at the L.A. show. Now the hottest versions of the mid-engine coupe and roadster, the GTS sets itself apart from the standard 718 with a Sport Design front fascia, tinted front indicator lights, tinted taillights, a black lower rear fascia, black tips on the standard sport exhaust and matte-black 20-inch wheels. Inside, drivers will find standard Sport Seats Plus with Alcantara centers and embroidered GTS logos on the head restraints. The Sport Chrono Package with its dashboard-mounted chronometer also is standard. The GTS is more than simply a styling exercise: the 718’s 2.5-liter 4-cylinder engine generates 365 horsepower — 15 more horsepower than the 718 S variants. The GTS has a standard 6-speed manual transmission, but is also available with Porsche’s 7-speed PDK dual-clutch gearbox. The 718 GTS can reach 60 mph in under 4 seconds when equipped with the quick-shifting PDK box. To enhance performance, the GTS has standard Porsche Torque Vectoring, a mechanical rear-differential lock and Porsche Active Suspension Management. The 2018 Porsche 718 Cayman GTS starts at $79,800, while the 718 Boxster GTS is priced at $81,900. Both are slated to arrive in showrooms in March 2018.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePorsche 911 GT2 RS — Frankfurt Motor Show
For those seeking the ultimate 911, the GT2 RS sits at the pinnacle of Porsche performance. The fastest and most powerful street-legal production 911 ever, the GT2 RS boasts 700 horsepower while weighing only 3,241 pounds. This favorable power-to-weight ratio results in very quick 2.7-second sprint to 60 mph and a top track speed of 211 mph. Power comes from a 3.8-liter twin-turbo engine based on the powerplant from the 911 Turbo, but with larger turbochargers and an improved cooling system. The GT2 RS uses a custom 7-speed double clutch Porsche Doppelkupplung — or PDK — gearbox. The Porsche 911 is designed to do more than just sprint in a straight line — even the most basic model earns kudos as one of the best-handling sports cars on the road. The GT2 RS is no exception — it features a race-bred chassis with rear axle-steering and ultra-high-performance tires. Larger air intakes and a big rear wing provide necessary downforce, and the Porsche Ceramic Composite Brakes ensure consistent stopping power. The optional Weissach package reduces weight by nearly 40 pounds, further enhancing the performance of the 911 GT2 RS. The GT2 RS arrives in showrooms early in 2018 with a starting price of $293,200.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePorsche 911 GT3 — Geneva Motor Show
The latest version of the 911 GT3 made its world debut in Geneva sporting more power, more speed and higher precision. As Porsche puts it, they’ve “created a new ruler of the racetrack,” but this one can be driven on the road to the track as well. The new GT3 is powered by a 4.0-liter engine producing 500 horsepower — practically the same engine used in the 911 GT3 Cup Car. Driving enthusiasts will be pleased to hear that the GT3 can be equipped with a 6-speed manual gearbox, as well as Porsche’s quick-shifting PDK transmission. Acceleration to 62 mph (100 km/h) takes a mere 3.4 seconds with the PDK, and top speed is just a tick under 200 mph. The GT3 will certainly get noticed on road or track with its large rear wing and large air intakes up front.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePorsche 911 T — Los Angeles Auto Show
The number of Porsche 911 variants seems to be never ending — in Los Angeles the latest iteration made its debut. The new 911 T pays homage to the 911 T from 1968 and is designed to be about pure performance. By using lightweight glass, opener loops instead of standard door handles and reduced sound insulation, Porsche has made the 911 T the lightest in the 911 Carrera lineup. The 911 T (T stands for Touring) also comes with many features designed to further enhance performance, including a sport suspension with lowered ride height, available rear-axle steering, a mechanical rear-differential lock and a shortened gear lever. Powering the 911 T is a twin-turbo 3.0-liter flat-six engine that puts out 370 horsepower and 331 lb-ft of torque. Equipped with a manual gearbox, the 911 T can reach 60 mph in 4.3 seconds with a top track speed of 182 mph. A PDK transmission also is available, which cuts the time to 60 mph to a mere 4 seconds. Expected to arrive in showrooms next March, the 2018 Porsche 911 T is priced at $102,100.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePorsche Cayenne Turbo — Frankfurt Motor Show
The all-new 2019 Porsche Cayenne Turbo made its world debut at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show. With fresh styling inside and out, the third-generation Cayenne Turbo can be identified by its wider painted wheel arches, quad exhaust outlets, special 21-inch wheels, and an adaptive roof spoiler that adjusts depending on acceleration and braking. Power comes from a 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 engine that generates 550 horsepower and 567 lb-ft of torque — enough grunt to push this SUV to 60 mph in a mere 3.7 seconds on its way to a top speed of 177 mph. The Cayenne Turbo also features a new lightweight chassis, 3-chamber air suspension, high-performance Porsche Surface Coated Brake technology, rear-axle steering and Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus — all designed to improve ride and handling. The 2019 Porsche Cayenne Turbo isn’t expected to arrive in showrooms until fall 2018.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePorsche Panamera Sport Turismo — Geneva Motor Show
The newest addition to Porsche’s sports car lineup, the Panamera Sport Turismo extends the roof of the Panamera 4-door sports car to create a wagonlike profile that increases cargo volume, makes rear-seat access easier and allows three passengers to sit back there. The Panamera Sport Turismo is offered in four versions for the U.S. market: Panamera 4, Panamera 4 E-Hybrid, Panamera 4S and Panamera Turbo. The same four engine choices found in the standard Panamera will be available on the Sport Turismo, including the 550-horsepower twin-turbocharged 4.0-liter V8. Pricing for the Sport Turismo starts at $96,200.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperiencePorsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo — Los Angeles Auto Show
Not only is this the latest member of the growing Panamera family, it may also have the longest name in Porsche history. Earlier this year Porsche added the Sport Turismo to the lineup, which is more wagonlike than the standard Panamera, offering more cargo space, more rear-seat headroom and room for three passengers in the rear. Now the Sport Turismo is available with the Panamera’s most potent powertrain. The Turbo S E-Hybrid ST sports a twin-turbo 4.0-liter V8 teamed with an electric motor to produce a massive 680 horsepower and 626 lb-ft of torque. This big 4-door Sport Turismo can reach 60 mph in a mere 3.2 seconds — faster than most sports cars — and can achieve a top track speed of 192 mph. The Turbo S E-Hybrid ST comes with all the bells and whistles, including Porsche Ceramic Composite Brakes, Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus, a Sport Chrono Package, Porsche Active Suspension Management and 21-inch 911 Turbo Design wheels. Expected to appear in showrooms next spring, the 2018 Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid Sport Turismo has a starting price of $188,400.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceSaleen 1 — Los Angeles Auto Show
The name Saleen has been associated with performance since the company began customizing and enhancing Ford Mustangs in the mid-1980s. About 17 years ago, Steve Saleen introduced the brand’s first purpose-built supercar, the Saleen S7. In the City of Angels Steve Saleen was on hand presenting the company’s latest product, the Saleen 1. This beautiful mid-engine sports car was designed and built in-house and features a lightweight yet strong carbon-fiber body and aluminum chassis. Power comes from a Saleen-built 2.5-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that produces 450 horsepower and 350 lb-ft of torque. A 6-speed manual gearbox is standard; however, an automatic transmission with paddle shifters is available. The Saleen 1’s potent engine and lightweight yet rigid construction create impressive performance figures. Saleen claims this new sports car can hit 60 mph from a standstill in 3.5 seconds with a top speed of 180 mph. More importantly, with the latest in electronics and purpose-built suspension, handling should be equally impressive — the company claims the Saleen 1 can achieve 1.2g on a skid pad. Pricing starts at $100,000 (which seems like a bargain), and deliveries are expected to start by the middle of 2018.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceSubaru Ascent — Los Angeles Auto Show
Subaru has introduced an all-new model to its lineup. The Ascent is the largest vehicle Subaru has ever produced, and it will be a welcome offering for loyal Subaru fans who need more room. With seating for up to eight occupants, the 3-row Ascent is can also be had as a 7-passenger version with second-row captain’s chairs. When it comes to comfort and convenience in the Ascent no one is left out, featuring eight USB charging points, 19 (yes, nineteen) cupholders, standard three-zone climate control, air vents for all three rows and reading lights in all seating positions. Power for the brand-new Ascent comes from a new 2.4-liter turbocharged boxer engine that produces 260 horsepower and 277 lb-ft of torque, combined with a continuously variable transmission. Full-time all-wheel drive will be standard across the board; active torque vectoring will also be standard, which enables better handling. Ascent is expected to arrive in showrooms next summer.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceSubaru Crosstrek — New York Auto Show
The first complete redesign of Subaru’s popular Crosstrek debuted at this year’s New York Auto Show. Slightly longer and wider than the outgoing model, the new Crosstrek gets new styling that features the familiar hexagonal grille and “hawk-eye” headlights. With a sculpted hood, larger fender flares, matte-black cladding and an impressive 8.7-inches of ground clearance, Crosstrek is easily differentiated from its Impreza sibling. Built on the all-new global platform designed to significantly enhance body and chassis rigidity and strength, the Subaru Crosstrek offers up driving dynamics similar to the all-new Impreza, aided by suspension improvements, a lower center of gravity and more responsive steering. Inside seats have been updated, there’s a redesigned steering wheel and more space is available for passengers and cargo. Powering Crosstrek is a revised 2.0-liter 4-cylinder Boxer engine shared with the Impreza, producing 152 horsepower and 145 lb-ft of torque — a slight increase compared to the outgoing model. As expected, all Crosstreks come standard with full-time all-wheel drive.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceSubaru Legacy — Chicago Auto Show
A few years ago, Subaru unveiled the next-generation Legacy at the Chicago Auto Show, and this year the Windy City seemed like the appropriate venue to reveal an updated version of the all-weather sedan. The 2018 Subaru Legacy features revised styling with several updates to comfort, safety and infotainment systems. Exterior refinements include wider, lower grille openings as well as a new bumper that better integrates with the trademark hexagonal grille, which is also larger than the previous model. In the rear, the tailpipes are better integrated into the fascia. The 2018 Legacy gets the latest STARLINK infotainment system featuring Bluetooth wireless capability, iPod control and long-awaited smartphone integration with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceSubaru WRX / WRX STI — Detroit Auto Show
It may be a few years before the high-performance Subaru WRX and WRX STI are built on the new, improved Impreza platform, but the company has made many updates to the current offerings showcased at the Detroit show. Both variants receive a restyled front fascia with a more pronounced grille and larger lower grille openings, providing a more aggressive look. The top-level WRX Limited gets LED Steering Responsive Headlights, as do all STI trims. Front and rear suspension has been retuned for the 2018 WRX, and the shifter feel has been enhanced. A new Performance Package is also available for the WRX Premium, featuring Recaro 8-way power seats, red-painted brake calipers and upgraded JURID brake pads. The STI gets similar suspension retuning for 2018, with the addition of a revised AWD system and its first-ever 19-inch wheels. An upgraded Brembo Performance Brake System is available, identified by yellow calipers, as well as larger drilled rotors all around for better heat dissipation.

© Rod HatfieldToyota Camry — Detroit Auto Show
The Toyota Camry has been the best-selling passenger car in America for the last 15 years, so it’s a big deal to completely redesign this popular model. But that’s exactly what Toyota has done, debuting the all-new 2018 Camry at this year’s Detroit Auto Show. “The all-new 2018 Camry is, without a doubt, the most captivating midsize sedan we’ve ever produced,” said Bob Carter, Toyota senior vice president of automotive operations. Lower and wider than the previous generation, the new Camry has an updated front grille, integrated headlights and sculpted lines to give Toyota’s bestseller a more engaging presence. To up the level of engagement, Toyota redesigned the trim levels so each Camry variant has a more distinctive look. The LE / XLE features a wide, more luxury-focused grille, while the SE / XSE takes on a more aggressive look with a grille similar to the look of Toyota’s luxury brand, Lexus. Camry’s interior features improved ergonomics and completely reengineered front seats, and rear seats offer plenty of legroom and headroom. Three powertrains are available: a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder, a 3.5-liter V6 and a fuel-efficient hybrid.

© Mike Meredith, Automotive Content ExperienceToyota Land Cruiser — Frankfurt Motor Show
Toyota debuted the new Land Cruiser full-size SUV in Frankfurt — one of the only SUVS still produced with a body-on-frame design that continues to offer a high-level of off-road capability. The new exterior features a bold new grille, and a new Torsen locking differential provides even better off-road capability in slippery conditions. Inside, Land Cruiser features a redesigned dashboard, new Optitron instrumentation, available ventilated front seats and available heated rear seats. Sold as a full-size luxury SUV in the U.S., Land Cruiser continues to be popular around the world, especially in countries where true off-road capability is an everyday necessity. The Land Cruiser is offered with different specifications in other markets, and no details about the U.S. version were available. That said, this new design gives an indication of what to expect when more information about the U.S. model comes to light.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceVolkswagen Arteon — Geneva Motor Show
Volkswagen introduced the all-new Arteon at this year’s Geneva show — a premium sedan that will eventually replace the aging CC. With sleek coupelike lines, the new Arteon is actually a fastback with a wide-opening rear hatch that offers impressive cargo capacity. As the future flagship of the VW lineup, the Arteon will be available with the latest high-tech safety features including — for the first time — predictive cornering lights that use camera and navigation information to illuminate curves in the road as you approach them. “The new Arteon has the proportions of a Gran Tourismo (sic) with a highly functional overall concept. It offers the very latest infotainment features and semi-automated driving functions. At the same time, our new top-of the-line model offers great value for money,” said Dr Herbert Diess, chairman of the management board for the Volkswagen brand. The Arteon is expected to go on sale next year as a 2019 model.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceVolvo XC40 — Los Angeles Auto Show
Volvo’s new compact SUV, the 2019 Volvo XC40 made its North American debut at this year’s Los Angeles Auto Show. The smallest SUV in Volvo’s lineup, the XC40 joins the full-size XC90 and the all-new midsize XC60 and will initially be offered with Volvo’s T5 four-cylinder Drive-E powertrain and all-wheel drive. Later in 2018 the XC40 will add a T4 front-wheel drive version, followed by other powertrain choices including hybrid and full-electric options. The XC40 is scheduled to go on sale in the U.S. in spring 2018.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content ExperienceVolvo XC60 — New York Auto Show
The Swedish car company seems to be on a roll — shortly after coming to market with an all-new XC90, S90 and V90, Volvo introduced the next-generation of the versatile XC60 in New York. Representing about 30 percent of Volvo’s global sales, the XC60 is very important for the company. “We have a strong heritage in designing stylish and dynamic SUVs that offer the latest in technology. The new XC60 will be no exception. It’s the perfect car for an active lifestyle, and it represents the next step in our transformation plan,” said Hakan Samuelsson, president and chief executive of the Volvo Car Group. Billed as one of the safest cars ever made, the new XC60 features a new system called Oncoming Lane Mitigation, which can autonomously steer out of the way to avoid a head-on collision. Production of the new Volvo XC60 began in April at the Torslanda Plant in Sweden.

© Rod HatfieldVolvo V90 — Detroit Auto Show
Wagons may no longer curry favor among U.S. shoppers, but the wagon has been part of Volvo’s heritage for more than 60 years, and this all-new V90 is probably the sexiest one yet. The long hood, sleek lines and wide stance make this is one of our favorite vehicles at this year’s Detroit show. “Wagons are an important part of Volvo’s history,” said Lex Kerssemakers, president and CEO of Volvo Car USA. “After successfully launching the XC90 SUV, S90 sedan and most recently V90 Cross Country, we complete our 90 range with the introduction of our new luxury wagon,” Kerssemakers noted. The V90 is available with front- or all-wheel drive, and can be equipped with either the 250-horsepower T5 or 316-horsepower T6 engine. In an unusual move, Volvo dealers won’t have the V90 sitting on showroom floors for immediate customer purchase. The 2018 Volvo V90 will be sold exclusively as a custom-order model that can be obtained via Volvo’s Online Concierge or the Overseas Delivery program.

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