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Archive for the ‘Auto Sales’ Category

10 of the Most Beautiful Cars Money Can Buy

REPOSTED BY MIDWEST GLASS TINTERS FROM:   YAHOO AUTOS

 

Aston Martin Vanquish

Cars are more than just a means to get from point a to point b. They can be works of rolling automotive art. Legendary designers such as Marcello Gandini, Giorgetto Giugiaro, and more recently Ian Callum are artistic geniuses as much as they’re “car guys.”

While beauty is without a doubt purely in the eye of the beholder, there are certain cars whose sleek lines, luscious curves, or sheer aggression make them universally loved. Well, at least universally loved here at Business Insider.

Thus, this list contains what we consider to be the ultimate collection of automotive elegance on sale today.

10. Volkswagen Scirocco: Based on the fantastic Volkswagen GTI, the Scirocco offers a wide stance and an aggressive, angular front headlight-and-grille combo.

Although the Scirocco is sold around the world, it is doesn’t look like the stylish coupe will be coming to America anytime soon.

9. Chevrolet Corvette Stingray: The Vette has always been beautiful to its devoted followers, but the current generation Stingray is without a doubt the prettiest version of the American idol that we’ve seen in decades.

The Vette perfectly blends elements from its more than 60 years of history with the design needs of a modern sports car. Which is one of the reasons we named the Stingray Business Insider’s first annual Car of the Year.

8. Peugeot RCZ: While most Americans may be unfamiliar with this French sports coupe, the RCZ has been racking up the awards since its debut in 2009 — including Top Gear’s 2010 Coupe of the Year.

The RCZ’s soft, flowing curves and classic “double bubble” roofline make for one gorgeous silhouette.

7.Maserati GranTurismo: Even though the GranTurismo has been on sale since for nearly a decade now, the GT’s elegant lines are truly timeless.

The GranTurismo’s Pininfarina-designed body offers a perfect balance between feminine and masculine features — with its rounded edges elegantly offset by its aggressive front fascia.

6. BMW i8: The BMW i8 looks like no other car on the road today.

With the i8, BMW has successfully blended a cacophony of materials, textures, and angles to create a harmonious composition.

5.Lamborghini Aventador: A Lamborghini should neither be boring nor conventionally beautiful. Fortunately, the flagship Aventador isn’t.

The Aventador’s aggressive lines and stealth-fighter-like edges make for a menacing beauty that’s perfect for Lambo’s attention-hoarding ethos.

4. Ferrari LaFerrari: People tend to find Ferraris attractive simply because they are Ferraris. But the reality is that the company created some misses. The Ferrari LaFerrari isn’t one of them.

Designed in-house at Ferrari, LaFerrari is a bold melange of classic elements from Maranello’s supercars of yore. It lines are sleek, evocative of a space-ship, yielding the ultimate Ferrari hypercar.

3. Aston Martin Vanquish: Like the English spy who is most famous for driving Aston Martins, the pressure on the Vanquish to live up to expectations is great. But Aston’s top-of-the-line grand tourer delivers!

With the Vanquish, designer Marek Reichman gave form to a seductively styled modern interpretation of the classic Aston Martin supercar.

2. Pagani Huayra: The 230-mph Huayra is the second all-new model to emerge from the Italian workshop of Horacio Pagani. It serves as the successor to the widely praised Zonda.

In may ways, Horacio Pagani is an automotive Steven Jobs. No detail, no matter how minute is overlooked. Everything from the design of the car’s active aerodynamics to the “ding” sound the shifter makes is carefully and deliberately crafted.

The result is a hypercar with a rocket-ship body and a sort of steampunk interior — utterly original!

1. Jaguar F-Type: Designer Ian Callum once told me a Jaguar design must possess beauty, simplicity, and sense of visual prowess.

With the F-Type, Sir Ian has checked all of those boxes — and then some.

The F-Type’s feline curves and muscular stance mean this cat from Coventry is ready to pounce.

Here’s why the Jaguar F-Type is the most beautiful car I’ve ever seen….

 

 

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Fierce, Capable & Focused – The 2015 Mercedes-AMG C63

REPOSTED BY MIDWEST GLASS TINTERS FROM:  BUSINESS INSIDER

 

Mercedes-AMG C63

 

The introduction of the entry-level Mercedes-Benz CLA launched a new era for the C-Class. No longer at the bottom of the brand’s offerings, the C-Class enjoyed a dramatic redesign in 2014 that enabled it to more closely resemble a miniaturized S-Class; unfettered from its humble origins, it was free to evolve into a more luxurious, refined, and mature sedan.

 

The new 2015 Mercedes-AMG C63 takes this evolution a step further and embraces a more performance-oriented focus, starting with a twin-turbocharged 4-liter V-8—a modified version of the engine powering the new Mercedes-AMG GT. Available in standard (469 hp) and S (503 hp) variants, the engine is said to be the most fuel-efficient 8-cylinder in the high-performance segment. Considering this claim, the C63’s zero-to-60-mph time of 4 seconds (and the S’s 3.9-second sprint) makes this an exceptionally capable compact sedan. Also joining the C-Class family is the Mercedes-Benz C450 AMG, which is powered by a 3-liter twin-turbo V-6 that is capable of reaching 60 mph from a dead stop in 4.9 seconds.

 

At the Algarve International Circuit in Portimão, Portugal, the C63 S proved to be a dynamic, entertaining performer thanks to its prodigious power and dialed-in suspension. Despite numerous blind corners, elevation changes, and decreasing-radius turns, the C63 S felt tenaciously glued down with intuitive, reassuring handling. Unlike some all-wheel-drive AMG models (such as the E-Class), the rear-wheel-drive C-Class AMG is easier to steer with the right pedal, sliding the tail during heavy throttle application.

Mercedes-AMG C63

 

That characteristic makes for a sportier, more exciting dynamic. The 6-piston ceramic brakes do an impressive, fade-free job of slowing down this 3,935-pound car, though Mercedes-Benz’s preemptive braking system intruded during lead/follow sessions when we followed the car ahead too closely. Suspecting the potential for impact, the system braked in order to maintain a safe distance.

 

On the roads surrounding the racetrack, the C63 S felt fierce, capable, and focused, delivering notable performance for its size and weight. As relatively small as its cabin may be, this impressively tuned, nicely finished AMG proves that wonderfully entertaining things can come in small packages.

Mercedes-AMG C63

 

 

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2016 Bentley Mulsanne Speed – Top in Torque

REPOSTED BY MIDWEST GLASS TINTERS FROM:  YAHOO AUTOS/MOTORAMIC

 

Pop quiz: If we asked you which gasoline-powered production car has the most torque, what would you say? The Bugatti Veyron? McLaren P1? LaFerrari? Maybe even a Detroit bruiser?

 

Wrong, wrong, and still wrong.

 

Before everyone sharpens their troll spikes, an explanation. First, we said production cars; The Veyron recently reached the end of its line in preparation for the new as-yet-to-be-announced model from Bugatti. And yes, limiting it to gasoline cars takes out the latest electric cars and diesel pickups.

 

That puts the new 2016 Bentley Mulsanne Speed at the top of the list. Bentley has tuned the 6.75-liter twin-turbocharged V-8 engine in the 2016 Mulsanne Speed to put out 811 lb.-ft. of torque, a boost of nearly 60 lb.-ft. over the base Mulsanne, along with an 25 additional hp, for a total of 530 hp. Bentley traces the origins of that 6.75-liter engine back to 1959, making it one of the oldest engines still getting bolted into vehicles — older than the first-generation Chevy small block and the original Lamborghini V-12 engine (which ended with the Murcielago). The 6.75-liter version of the engine went into production in 1968, and over that time Bentley has tripled the power and torque output it gets from the engine.

 

Which is what’s required for dealing with nearly 6,000 lbs. of hand-built British luxury sedan. Getting up to speed would seem like a Herculean feat, but the Mulsanne Speed quietly cruises up into the triple digits with nary a complaint. Even on the track.

 

Wait, what?

 

 

In the hands of five-time Le Mans winner and Bentley brand ambassador Derek Bell, the Mulsanne Speed feels agile and quick over the undulating F1 Circuit of the Americas track just outside of Austin. Even though Bell admits that he hadn’t driven the track prior to our hot lap, the car feels controlled and stable—even at speeds exceeding 130 mph. It hustles from 0-60 mph in 4.8 seconds and 0-100 mph in just 11 seconds; the theoretical top speed is 190 mph.

 

On the road, the eight-speed transmission concealed its work like a head butler as we rocket along the edge of the Hill Country outside of Austin. People appear surprised—and amused—to see the big, attractive car barreling down the toll road. Toss it through a few sweeping turns, toggle the “Charisma” knob and switch to Sport and the steering weights up, adaptive air suspension and damping stiffens, and you and your occupants are treated to a joyously jaunty ride that’s fun for the driver but not vomit-inducing for passengers. Comfort mode is prime for long, fast toll road runs or when stuck in traffic in town, but we wouldn’t recommend it when trying to hurry the car along a curvy road. You can also customize the air suspension and steering feel individually, if you are so inclined. Just in case you were wondering, the Mulsanne Speed is rear wheel drive…and yes, you can (and we did) do a burnout in it.

 

In addition to the ride and raucous speed, the craftsmanship of a Bentley is something to be admired. It takes more than 150 man-hours to complete the interior of a single Mulsanne. (By comparison, that’s roughly how long it takes Toyota to bolt together five entire Corollas.) All the high touch points — vent plungers that look like beautiful antique cigarette lighters, the “Charisma” button that changes handling, even the weighted multimedia control knob that clicks pleasantly under touch — are made of real glass and metal. During the drive, Sam Graham, the Mulsanne line product director, notes that it takes 16 cowhides to envelope the interior. Here in Texas, that counts as half a herd.

 

From a quick glance, the Mulsanne Speed doesn’t look all that different from the run-of-the-mill CEO hauler (if you could call a Mulsanne run-of-the-mill) but it does have a few small visual clues that make it stand out from the standard Mulsanne. Directional wheels that are machined, amazingly, from a single billet of aluminum; a darker chrome grille; a cast “Speed” badge, and door sills marked with “Mulsanne Speed” are all subtle nods to the naughty power under the hood. The Speed is also the first Mulsanne to offer a carbon fiber interior option.

 

 

And of course all this high hustle and luxury bustle comes at a price. The base Mulsanne Speed starts at $335,000, or more than the median home price in Denver. The one we drove bore a few choice sets of the 90 variations of standard options that come in the Mulsanne Speed. Ours included the entertainment package that comes complete with iPad tables in the back seats and WiFi, as well as a package that includes massaging front seats, flip down rear mirrors and additional rear seat champagne cooler. The grand total of the Speed we tested rounded out to $407,000. According to Bentley, most Mulsanne Speeds are customized to around $385,000.

 

Bentley is only making 1,000 of these monsters this year, with a majority going to China and the Middle East, and only a few stateside. The Speed option will cost buyers an additional $30,000 over the base Mulsanne price, but at this level, that’s probably a wise move. If you’re going to buy this kind of hat, you should get all the cattle.

 

 

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45th Anniversary Gold Edition Nissan GT-R

REPOSTED BY MIDWEST GLASS TINTERS FROM: MOTOR AUTHORITY 

 

There are some minor changes in store for the 2016 Nissan GT-R, including a new 45th Anniversary Gold Edition celebrating the GT-R’s heritage.

 

Wearing the same Silica Brass color that adorned the R34 2001 Skyline GT-R M-Spec, only 30 of the special 45th Anniversary 2016 GT-Rs will be offered in the U.S.

 

In addition to the special paint, the Gold Edition anniversary car also gets a gold-tone VIN plate in the engine compartment and a commemorative plaque on the interior center console. It’s based on the Premium model.

What will the Gold Edition cost you? That’s not clear yet—but you can bet it’ll cost more than the three standard forms of the GT-R: Premium, Black Edition, and NISMO.

 

Prices for those three standard models doesn’t change from last year, however. The Premium starts at $101,770 plus $1,595 destination and handling; the Black Edition is $111,510 plus $1,595; and the NISMO is $149,990 plus $1,595.

 

Changes for the 2016 model year are minimal: the Premium and Black Edition get five more horsepower (for a total of 550 horsepower), and the Premium gets new 20-spoke RAYS wheels finished in a near-black color. The GT-R NISMO’s output remains unchanged at 600 horsepower.

 

The 2016 Nissan GT-R is available now.

 

 

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Ford’s Most Insane & Expensive Vehicle Yet

REPOSTED BY MIDWEST GLASS TINTERS FROM:  THE MOTLEY FOOL

 

There’s little question that Ford Motor Company‘s (NYSE: F  ) recently unveiled 2017 GT is awesome, insanely awesome, even. In fact, when it rolled out at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show in January, jaws dropped and the supercar stole the show. It boasts more than 600 horsepower from a twin-turbocharged EcoBoost 3.5-liter V-6 and is easily one of the world’s most impressive rides.


Ford’s 2017 GT. Source: Ford Motor Company.

Its awesomeness is only matched by its insane price tag. Ford’s performance division announced that the supercar would start around a staggering $400,000 — about four times as much as anyone outside of Ford expected. That price tag means Ford is essentially aiming its GT to compete with the likes of a Lamborghini Aventador, which is practically unheard of for the mainstream brand based out of Dearborn.

 

While the GT will set you back nearly a cool half-million dollars, at least you won’t have to wait in a long line. Ford plans on putting the car — which is built mostly by hand — into production next year, and only intends on building about 250 units.

Ford’s 2017 GT. Source: Ford Motor Company.

If you do the math, Ford’s GT is expected to generate roughly $100 million for the automaker, but that’s a drop in the bucket: Ford churned out $144 billion in revenue last year. However, that doesn’t mean that the vehicle isn’t valuable to Ford investors.

 

“The GT is the ultimate execution of an enthusiast supercar,” said Raj Nair, group vice president of Ford Global Product Development. “GT includes innovations and technologies that can be applied broadly across Ford’s future product portfolio — another proof point that Ford continues raising the performance bar while ultimately improving vehicles for all of our customers.”

 

Not only will the innovative designs and parts created for the GT trickle down to the rest of Ford’s vehicle lineup, but the GT will also give professional and daily performance enthusiast drivers a chance to show off a Ford vehicle. Historically, those types of drivers have a wide influence on mainstream consumers, and that bodes really well for Ford’s new performance division, which will launch more than 12 new vehicles through 2020.

 

Ford’s recent move into designing more performance vehicles comes at a great time, as the company notes that sales in the category are up 70% in the U.S. and 14% in Europe since 2009, which outpaces the growth of the overall industry.

 

Furthermore, Ford’s performance vehicles have succeeded in accomplishing two very valuable things: luring younger millennials and conquering competitors’ consumers. Consider that Ford’s existing performance vehicles, more specifically the ST lineup, has more than 65% of their U.S. buyers coming from outside the Ford brand — a huge win. Also, millennials, who TrueCar projects will purchase roughly 4.24 million of this year’s estimated 17 million new cars, are purchasing Ford’s ST vehicles at a rate twice that of other Ford vehicles.

 

Essentially, these performance vehicles are going to attract the future bloodline of new car sales and help spur innovation across Ford’s mainstream vehicle lineup. And while Ford’s GT is priced for insanity and will probably never be parked in your garage (or mine), its mere existence is very valuable for Ford and its investors.

 

 

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BMW’s Supercar of the Future?

REPOSTED BY MIDWEST GLASS TINTERS FROM:  BOLD RIDE

 

BMW M Coupe concept supercar photo

 

In a world where hybrid hypercars reign supreme, it seems the days of naturally-aspirated GT supercars are all but forgotten. Thankfully, Aston keeps our GT dreams alive with cars like the Vanquish, and one artist wants to do the same for BMW.

 

South African designer Idries Noah (aka idi3d), created this stunning BMW M GT concept to take on the likes of Aston Martin and other GT supercars. Similar to the competition, the concept is long, sleek, and puts down a hypothetical 600 horsepower from a twin-turbocharged V8.

PHOTOS: See More of the BMW M GT Concept by Idries Noah

 

BMW M Coupe concept photo

 

Using cues from the current generation M6, and digging into the history books with the 850i, the M GT manages to conjure up both classic and modern lines in one handsome package. According to Noah, it’s also created to be both lighter and faster than the current-generation M6.

 

The M GT is just a design study of what could be, but it’s definitely something we could see in the BMW lineup in the near future.

 

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1 Million Vehicles Recalled by Chrysler in the past 2 Weeks

REPOSTED BY MIDWEST GLASS TINTERS FROM:  247WALLSTREET.COM

 

 

Owners of 703,000 Chrysler sport utility vehicles (SUVs) and minivans are being notified to bring their vehicles in for a repair to the ignition switch. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles N.V. (NYSE: FCAU) recalled more than 300,000 Jeep Grand Cherokees and Dodge Durangos last week to repair a faulty fuel pump.

 

The latest recall, announced Saturday, is similar to the ignition switch problem that caused General Motors Co (NYSE: GM) to recall about 2.6 million vehicles last year. The vehicles’ ignition switch has been found to slip out of the “Run” position into the “Off” position, which may cause the engine to stall, shutting down the power steering and the brakes and disabling the airbags. Owners have been told to remove all extra keys and doodads from the key ring until the switch is repaired.

 

The vehicles included in the ignition switch recall are model year 2008 through 2010 Dodge Grand Caravans and Journey and Chrysler Town and Country. The recall was first issued in June of last year, and some of the vehicles included in the latest revision have already been repaired once. The company said at the time that it had received approximately 32 customer complaints and 465 warranty claims related to the ignition switch shutting off inadvertently. Chrysler also said it was aware of two “alleged rear end collisions” related to the faulty switch.

 

Chrysler will conduct the recall in two stages. The first is expected to launch April 6, 2015, and will cover the model year 2008 and 2009 vehicles. The second stage is expected to launch August 3, 2015, and include all the model year 2010 vehicles.

 

 

 

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Chicago Auto Show – What to See

REPOSTED BY MIDWEST GLASS TINTERS FROM:  CRAIN’S CHICAGO BUSINESS

 - The 2016 Ford GT Supercar

The 2016 Ford GT Supercar

This year’s Chicago Auto Show at McCormick Place is all about muscle. Automakers at the event this weekend are unveiling the most powerful, technologically advanced engines ever seen for street-legal vehicles.

 

Research continues on electric and hydrogen and hybrid technologies in Detroit and Palo Alto, but this year’s show, at a moment when gas prices hover around $2 a gallon, is focused squarely on horsepower. BMW, Acura and Mercedes-AMG are each showing off new cars with approximately 550 horsepower.

 

Here’s what else to see:

The new racing-derived Ford GT supercar concept debuts with a turbocharged V-6 engine that generates 600 horsepower.

 

Cadillac will show off its CTS-V ultra sedan with an eight-speed transmission producing 640 horsepower in what is essentially a Corvette V-8 power plant.

 

The Nissan GT-R LM Nismo race car, with 600 horses, will be here on its way to competing at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. A Nismo street concept with a bit less muscle will be available for viewing, too.

 

The new Dodge SRT Charger Hellcat, which with 707 horses is being touted as the most powerful sedan ever built, may be the ultimate in muscle. (Visitors can get the feel of driving it by hopping into the Hellcat simulator positioned close to the real thing.)

 

The 2016 Cadillac CTS-V, with a 640 horsepower engine, is the most powerful in Cadillac’s history, allowing the car to reach a top speed of 200 mph. But it’s a rear-wheel drive, a liability in snowy Chicago winters. Figure on the car stickering at $70,000 and above.

 - The 2015 Bugatti Veyron.

The 2015 Bugatti Veyron.

If you missed it at last year’s show, don’t miss the French-made 2015 Bugatti Veyron 16.4, a mid-engined sports car that generates a whopping 1,001 horsepower from an 8-liter, 16-cylinder engine. It rolls from 0-to-60 miles per hour in an eye-blink of 2.5 seconds and cruises at a top speed reputed to approach 260 mph. It gets just 7 miles per gallon in city driving, but then anybody paying up $2 million or so for this ultimate road machine probably doesn’t much notice the current price of gas at the pump, much less pump his own.

 - The 2015 Buick Avenir

The 2015 Buick Avenir

It’s not all about muscle, however:

The Buick Avenir, a rakish four-door with swooping lines and a boattail-styled rear, will remind some of the 1970s Riviera. Extras include an ionic air filtration system inside and an active fuel-management system that deactivates cylinders when not needed. The Avenir is not ready for production yet, but the 2016 Buick Cascada, the brand’s first convertible in 25 years, will be for sale this fall, probably at around $40,000.

 

Kurt Schiele, co-owner of BMW, Jaguar and Toyota dealerships in Elmhurst, is looking forward to the appearance of the Toyota FT-1 concept car, the brand’s first serious sports car since the late 1990s, when the Supra expired. Schiele says the silhouette of the car flies in the face of Toyota’s ordinarily conservative designs. “It’s crazy and radical but flows together smoothly,” he says. He expects it will eventually come into production with a price tag of $50,000 or less.

 

The 2016 Lincoln MKX has adaptive headlamps that curve with the road and a 360-degree camera to give maximum views.

 

An all-new 2016 Honda Pilot, which got its last update in 2009, will be shown for the first time with plenty of bells and whistles.

 

Aston Martin will show off the DB9 in a “carbon edition” that advertises less weight, while its latest V-12 engine generates 510 horsepower.

 

The 2016 Acura NSX is unique for that brand in that it was designed entirely by American engineers and will be built at the company’s Marysville, Ohio, plant. It will start at around $150,000, about the same as the new Ford GT, which is built to compete, performance-wise, with the likes of Ferrari and Lamborghini.

 

The Honda FCV concept car runs on hydrogen fuel cells with a range of 300 miles on a single tank of compressed hydrogen (taking three minutes to refuel).

 

The Chicago Auto Show runs from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday through Feb. 21 and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Feb. 22. Admission is $12, $6 for seniors 62 and older and $6 for children aged 7 to 12 (free for children 6 and under).

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10 Best Used Cars Vs. New Cars

REPOSTED BY MIDWEST GLASS TINTERS FROM:   AUTOBLOG.COM

 

10 Best Cars to Buy Used Over New10 Best Cars to Buy Used Over New10 Best Cars to Buy Used Over New10 Best Cars to Buy Used Over New10 Best Cars to Buy Used Over New10 Best Cars to Buy Used Over New10 Best Cars to Buy Used Over New10 Best Cars to Buy Used Over New

 

Buying a slightly used car over a new car can sometimes save you thousands of dollars while still giving you all the benefits of a new car. With warranties that last anywhere from 4 years all the way up to 10 years nowadays, it’s a no brainer for some buyers to buy slightly used vehicle over a new one.

 

It’s no secret that a brand new car loses thousands of dollars in depreciation value as soon as it leaves the dealer’s lot. For some people, it won’t matter. The benefits and the feeling of having a brand new car may often outweigh any financial penalty to some consumers. Buying new also sometimes gives you the option of customizing your options for your specific wants or needs.

 

For those of you that see the value in buying almost-new over new, iSeeCars.com has looked at the data for over 15.7 million cars sold over the past year and put together a list of the 10 Best Cars to Buy Used Over New.

 

Check out the gallery to find out which of the 10 almost-new cars have the largest drop in financial value; giving you, the buyer, the best purchase price advantage if you’re looking to save some money.

 

  • iSeeCars.com analyzed 15.7 million cars for sale over the last year to identify which ones had the biggest price differences between new and lightly used models.
  • The top 10 cars with the largest price differences lost 29.2 per cent to 38.2 per cent in value after only one year of ownership.
  • Buying a used 1-year-old model over a new car can mean substantial savings for consumers — from $6.8K up to $37.6K.

 

The 10 Best Cars to Buy Used Over New

Rank Make Model % Price Difference over the First Year
1 Hyundai Genesis -38.2%
2 (tie) smart fortwo -36.9%
2 (tie) Cadillac CTS -36.9%
4 Chevrolet Impala -33.5%
5 GMC Yukon XL -32.8%
6 Volvo S80 -32.6%
7 Mercedes-Benz S-Class -32.4%
8 Lincoln MKS -30.4%
9 MINI Cooper -29.3%
10 Jaguar XK -29.2%

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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13 Exciting New Cars Coming in 2015

REPOSTED BY MIDWEST GLASS TINTERS FROM:   FREEP.COM

 

 

After a strong year for car and truck sales, automakers have a flood of new models in the works to woo buyers in 2015.

Here are some of the vehicles expected to debut over the next 12 months:

 

■ Acura NSX: Designed, developed and built in the USA, this all-wheel drive hybrid super car is the heart of Acura’s plan to become a leading luxury brand. The two-seat NSX will be one of the most eagerly watched introductions at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. While it will sell in small numbers, Honda engineers are throwing the kitchen sink at the NSX — including separate electric motors for each of the front wheels and a mid-engine gasoline-electric hybrid package — to reestablish Acura as a go-to brand for performance, technology and excitement.

 

■ Cadillac SRX: The SRX crossover was an immediate hit when Cadillac introduced it, but the handsome five-seater has grown old. Cadillac needs a new model with the latest features and improved fuel economy to cash in on the boom in luxury SUVs.

“Luxury crossovers are incredibly popular,” IHS Automotive senior analyst Stephanie Brinley said. “The SRX replacement is a chance for Cadillac to cash in on that and continue their run of excellent products.” The SRX replacement will have a new name as Caddy switches to names that combine letters and numerals, like BMW and Audi use.

 

■ Chevrolet Cruze: By far the best small car Chevrolet has built, the current Cruze’s features and fuel economy gave the brand its first legitimate competitor for the best from Japan, Korea and Germany.

GM puts such high stock on the Cruze that CEO Mary Barra, who was then in charge of product development, delayed the new car a year to make sure it didn’t repeat the mistakes of the botched redesign of the Malibu midsize sedan. The result: a roomier interior and other improvements in the sedan that goes on sale next fall.

 

■ Honda HR-V: Honda’s entry in the hot subcompact SUV market, the HR-V could win the brand new buyers, thanks to slick looks and one of the larger engines in the segment. “It’s going to get a lot of attention,” Brinley said. “We’ll be talking about small crossovers all year.”

Fuel economy, price and features will be key for the HR-V, whose competitors will include the Chevrolet Trax and Fiat 500X. The HR-V looks to have one of the roomier interiors in the pack.

 

■ Hyundai Tucson: Hyundai’s smaller SUV will grow slightly larger in 2015 to make room for — you guessed it — a future subcompact crossover. That will push it closer in size to the Santa Fe, potentially creating a traffic jam on Hyundai dealership floors.

“These vehicles are smash hits in the rest of the world,” Cars.com Detroit bureau chief Aaron Bragman said. Hyundai thinks a roomier interior and new looks could make the Tucson a hit with U.S. buyers.

 

■ Jaguar XE: Jaguar’s first compact sedan launches the British brand into direct competition with aggressive sport sedans like the BMW 3-series and Cadillac ATS. It’s a tough market, but success is vital to Jag’s global growth plan. An expected all-wheel drive model could help.

“Jaguar’s never had a viable candidate in this segment, but this one ticks all the right boxes” with contemporary looks and features, Bragman said.

The XE is one of the first tests of the Indian Tata Group’s ability to develop a luxury car without former Jag owner Ford’s help.

 

■ Jeep Renegade: Developed primarily for sale in Europe, China and other regions, the subcompact Renegade’s appeal in the U.S. is unknown, but Jeep could use an appealing entry-level model. A lot will depend on whether the Renegade delivers on Fiat Chrysler’s promise of serious off-road capability.

“It gives young buyers the classic Jeep looks and all the benefits of a Wrangler with a better price, higher fuel economy and more safety equipment,” Bragman said. “You’re going to see them all over college campuses.”

 

■ Lexus RX: Like the similar-sized Cadillac SRX, the RX is one of the older five-seat midsize luxury SUVs on the market. It’s also the best-seller in its segment, and the vehicle other automakers gear themselves up to compete with.

“The RX is the most popular luxury crossover in the U.S.,” Bragman said. “It’s the vehicle that made Lexus a volume brand.”

Expect advanced features and a luxurious interior to keep the competition on its toes.

 

■ Lincoln MKX: Ford’s luxury brand is basking in the warm response to the smaller MKC SUV it launched in 2014. The five-seat MKX needs to make a big impression to maintain that momentum and compete with the replacements for the SRX and RX.

“The MKX’s success is very important to Lincoln,” Brinley said.

Look for Lincoln to build on its strength making high-end interiors with the new MKX. The new Revel audio system will also debut on the MKX, which should be on sale this spring.

 

■ Mazda MX-5: Mazda might still exist without the affordable little roadster also known as the Miata, but its “Zoom-zoom” claims to be a brand for enthusiasts would ring hollow. The curvy new model boasts a 50/50 weight distribution for handling and a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine.

“The MX-5 is Mazda’s icon, the car that sets the stage for the rest of the brand and defines Mazda as a company,” Bragman said. “It impacts the whole company, every model in the lineup.”

 

■ Nissan Titan: Nissan was the first Japanese automaker to build a full-size pickup, but the Titan has never met sales targets. At one point, Nissan nearly quit Titan development all together to use a truck developed by Chrysler’s Ram division. When that deal fell apart, Nissan doubled down on the Titan, developing the 2016 Titan that will debut at January’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

The new Titan promises to be more capable, with a wider choice of models and a powerful and efficient 5.0-liter V8 diesel from Indiana-based Cummins Engine.

 

■ Toyota Tacoma: The midsize Tacoma pickup is one of Toyota’s core models, with as avid and loyal a following as the Camry or Corolla. The 2016 model debuting at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit faces unexpectedly strong competition from the new Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon midsize pickups.

“Toyota’s likely to remain the sales leader, but it’s possible they were caught a little off guard by the Colorado,” Brinley said. The strong likelihood that the Nissan Frontier midsize pickup expected later in the year will offer a V6 Cummins diesel adds to the 2016 Tacoma’s challenges.

 

■ Volvo XC90: The XC90 was one of the most popular European SUVs when it debuted, but it’s been on the market too long, with too few updates. Volvo product development slowed to a crawl when Ford sold the Swedish brand to a Chinese company during the Great Recession.

The company’s getting back on its feet, and the XC90 is key to winning back safety-conscious family buyers who are Volvo’s core audience.

“The interior is striking,” Bragman said. “They used some very creative materials and design themes. It’s a stunning place to sit.”

 

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