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The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
 |  Jan 09 2012, 10:08 AM

Chevrolet’s Sonic compact car is getting some sporty new upgrades. Chevy is adding an RS badge to the Sonic, and all the features that go along with it.

Coming standard with the Sonic RS will be a 1.4L turbocharged Ecotec four-cylinder engine cranking out 138hp and 148 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed transmission in either automatic or standard configuration will be standard with the RS. Along with the added horses, the RS will get lowered and stiffened suspension with performance tuned dampers, four wheel disc brakes and a sport tuned exhaust.

The RS package will feature some new paint and plastic to try and make the compact Sonic look the part of a sport tuned race car. A new grille and front facia, new fog light design, 17-inch rims, new mirror caps, rear facia and spoiler and even a chromed out exhaust will give the RS package the sports car look. To complete the look four new paint options will be included with the RS, they are Victory Red, Summit White, Cyber Grey Metallic and Black Granite.

The interior of the compact will be getting a few upgrades as well to complete the package. New front sport seats, a flat bottomed race inspired steering wheel, aluminium pedals, custom interior RS styling and a custom shift knob for the manual transmission. The Chevrolet MyLink system will also come standard which integrates smart phones with the cars infotainment system.

The Sonic RS should add some much needed get up and go to the compact car’s personality.

GALLERY: Chevy Sonic RS

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GALLERY: Chevy Sonic RS- 2012 Detroit Auto Show

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 |  Jan 09 2012, 9:57 AM

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Nissan is trying to stay at the forefront of the rapidly-progressing electric vehicle market by announcing a plug-in version of their compact van today at the Detroit Auto Show, the e-NV200.

“A potential game changing vehicle in its segment, the battery capacity will support a driving range similar to the Nissan LEAF, while payload and cargo space will offer the same level as the current NV200. The production version would be targeted mainly at businesses, but also at private users or families in major regions,” Nissan corporate vice president, Hideto Murakami said in a press release.

The concept takes cues from the Leaf. “The Nissan e-NV200 Concept is a standout design, sharing the iconic EV look established by the Nissan LEAF but in a modern, active, functional commercial vehicle form,” said Murakami.

The fact remains that this is just a concept, so exterior and interior features have a lot of room to grow, though it makes sense that the company would borrow heavily from their already existing EV formula. Some concepts are easier to take seriously than others, because as many of us know: concepts often remain on the auto show floor and the drawing board. That isn’t the case for the e-NV200, Nissan sayas they are already conducting tests and preparing it for the real world.

The initial trial took place last year during the summer with the Japan Post Service and the company is continued that work in London with FedEx starting last month.

While cars with a range close to the current Leaf’s capacity will be good for deliveries in cities where routes are short and fleets are big, the reality is that charging times and the cost per vehicle may be prohibitive for small businesses who run frequent deliveries, even with federal tax credits.

The gasoline NV200 is produced in Japan, Europe and China and available in 40 countries, but currently not sold in the U.S. Americans can look forward, however, to seeing the NV200 late next year in New York City as taxi cabs.

GALLERY: Nissan e-NV200

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 |  Jan 09 2012, 9:02 AM

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In a press conference that clearly targeted the Honda Accord and Toyota Camry, Ford said consumers “expect more” than what its Japanese rivals have been offering and have, in response, developed the all new 2013 Fusion sedan. The car was unveiled today at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

With a fresh new design, an impressive interior and plenty of technology, the Fusions big boast is its fuel economy, which global product development boss Derrick Kuzak calls “game changing.” Hardly an empty remark, the Fusion will get 26 mpg city and 37 mpg highway with a new EcoBoost 1.6-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine. (Both an entry level 170-hp 2.5-liter 4-cylinder and a 237-hp EcoBoost 2.0-liter will be offered as well).

Taking a step up in fuel economy is the new hybrid model, which bests even the new Camry Hybrid by a significant margin with 44 mpg city and 47 mpg highway. Ford even showed off what it calls the Fusion Energi, a plug-in hybrid, with an incredible 100 mpge rating – 8 more than even the Volt.

GALLERY: 2013 Ford Fusion Debut

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GALLERY: 2013 Ford Fusion

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See AutoGuide’s First Look Video of the Ford Fusion below:

Continue Reading…

 |  Jan 09 2012, 6:46 AM

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Ahead of its official debut at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show, Lexus has released photos and a press release on their refreshed 2013 LX570 SUV. The facelifted LX570 is surprisingly aggressive and sporty, and it’s clear that Lexus is trying to make a consistent statement with their front fascia designs across all their models – starting with the 2013 GS.

The new front and rear bumpers go with the new Lexus spindle grille, 20-inch wheels and upgraded interior. Lighting has also been changed with new LED daytime running lights to go with the new headlight design and larger foglight bezels. In the rear, the taillights have also been tweaked while the license plate surround gets a new look and a tow hitch cover is more integrated.

Powering the LX 570 is a 5.7L V8 engine with 383-hp and 403 lb-ft of torque. An electronically-controlled six-speed automatic transmission is mated to the powerplant while the transfer case provides full-time, four-wheel drive.

Inside, one can expect all the luxury amenities typically found in all of Lexus’s models in a spacious, eight-passenger cabin.

GALLERY: 2013 Lexus LX 570

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See AutoGuide’s complete 2012 North American International Auto Show Coverage Here

 |  Jan 09 2012, 5:51 AM

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No surprises here, but details on Volkswagen‘s new Jetta Hybrid has been revealed ahead of its official debut at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show. Powered by a 1.4L turbocharged engine with 150-hp and 184 lb-ft of torque, the hybrid is combined with a 36-hp electric motor giving it a total output around 170-hp.

Volkswagen is claiming that the Jetta hybrid will get a 45-mpg combined rating, which is around 20- to 30-percent more efficient than the standard Jetta. The hybrid will also feature a seven-speed DSG transmission that can be decoupled from the engine to give the Jetta Hybrid all-electric operation for 1.2-miles up to 44-mph in E-mode. Otherwise, the Jetta can run in all-electric mode up to 37-mph.

The Jetta Hybrid weighs in 221-lbs more than the standard Jetta, giving it a total weight of 3,531-lbs.

AutoGuide.com will have more details when the Jetta Hybrid makes its official debut today.

GALLERY: 2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid

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For complete 2012 Detroit Auto Show Coverage, See Here

 |  Jan 09 2012, 12:01 AM

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Setting the new standard in the mid-size family sedan category, Ford will unveil its all-new 2013 Fusion today at the Detroit Auto Show. Unequivocally good looking and perhaps even downright sexy, the new Fusion will be available with five different powertrains, and Ford claims the car will get best-in-class fuel economy in the gas, hybrid and plug-in hybrid segments.

Starting with three gas powertrains, the Fusion can be had with a 2.5-liter 4-cylinder with 170 hp and 170 lb-ft of torque as a low cost entry-level model. Nearly identical in power is a 1.6-liter EcoBoost 4-cylinder with direct-injection and turbocharging that gets a non-hybrid class-leading 26 mpg city and 37 mpg highway. In fact, that number is actually higher than the quasi-hybrid Chevy Malibu Eco.

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Finally, in the gas-only department anyway, there will be an EcoBoost 2.o-liter 4-cylinder as a performance option making 237 hp and 250 lb-ft of torque – with AWD optional.

The new Fusion Hybrid will deliver 44 mpg city and 47 mpg highway to top the Camry by a significant margin, while the Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid is projected to get 100 mpge – better than even the Chevy Volt.

Along with technologies like SYNC and the latest edition of the MyFord Touch telematics system the new Fusion will also offer plenty of other safety and convenience technologies, including some that are segment exclusives like a new Lane Keeping System. A first in the mid-size sedan class, a camera that reads the road ahead will then signal an alert if the driver isn’t staying in his or her lane. If no corrective behavior is taken the system will then vibrate the steering wheel and finally, if no action is taken, the car will actually adjust the steering in order to return the car to its proper lane.

Other features include adaptive cruise control, a blind-spot monitoring system and Ford’s active park assist.

GALLERY: 2013 Ford Fusion

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See AutoGuide’s complete 2012 Detroit Auto Show Coverage Here

 |  Jan 09 2012, 12:01 AM

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Setting a new industry benchmark, Ford will unveil its new Fusion and Fusion Hybrid today at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. What might just be the best looking mid-size sedan on offer, Ford’s hybrid model also offers class-leading fuel economy with an incredible 47-mpg city and 44-mpg highway rating. Those numbers best the current industry leading Camry by 4 mpg city and 5 mpg highway.

Helping achieve that number is a smaller 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine mated to an electric motor and lithium-ion battery pack, delivering 185 hp – a number that is down about 15 hp from the competition. Helping raise the car’s highway mileage is the fact that it can now operate on pure electric power at speeds of up to 62 mph, compared to 47 mph on the previous model.

If not even those numbers impress you then Ford has one more card to play, the Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid. The car is projected to achieve a 100 MPGe (miles per gallon equivalent) rating. That number is actually 8 mpge ahead of the Volt and 13 ahead of the Toyota Prius plug-in hybrid. What Ford has not released, however, is how far the car’s electric range is.

Taking a page from the Hyundai-Kia playbook, Ford admits that while the last Fusion was a smart choice for rational car buyers, it was hardly emotional. That has all changed with this latest model that is, simply put, one handsome sedam. Ford also promises a vastly improved and more spacious interior, with the obvious additions of SYNC and the latest version of the MyFord Touch telematics system.

GALLERY: 2013 Ford Fusion

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 |  Jan 08 2012, 10:34 PM

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Speaking in bold proclamations, GM North America President Mark Reuss said the new Cadillac ATS compact luxury sports sedan “will win” against German rivals. What makes that statement so much more significant is that no one but the Germans, with cars like the BMW 3 Series, have been able to achieve success in the segment.

Reuss said the ATS “represents the new soul of Cadillac”. Marketing VP Butler commented that the three words that can best describe the car are “nimble, quick and fun” – with Reuss even admitting that the term “light weight” isn’t one that could be applied to past Cadillacs.

And yet, the ATS is “mass efficient” weighing “well under” 3,400 lbs say Reuss and commenting that it will be 100 lbs less than either an Audi A4 or Mercedes C-Class. It’s that weight that helps translate into a dynamic vehicle, not to mention the all-original chassis, 50/50 weight balance, Brembo brakes and magnetic ride shocks – a first in the segment. As for those brakes, they’ll bring to ATS to a top from 60 mph in just 109 ft.

Motivating the car in the opposite direction will be a choice of three engines, a 200-hp 2.5-liter 4-cylinder, a 270-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder and a 318-hp 3.6-liter V6. Reuss also dropped a bombshell at the cars unveiling, stating that during it’s lifecycle, GM will offer a diesel engine option in North America.

As a proper sports sedan the ATS is, of course, rear-wheel drive, though an all-wheel drive option will be available.

Looking like a flatter CTS and borrowing the wider grille from the new XTS flagship sedan, Caddy promises big with the interior of the ATS. Along with real wood and metal there’s genuine carbon fiber trim on some models, while gloss black plastic helps give a high-tech look – as does the massive CUE telematics screen.

For more on the ATS, including available features, see here.

GALLERY: 2013 Cadillac ATS Debut

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GALLERY: 2013 Cadillac ATS

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See AutoGuide’s Full Detroit Auto Show Coverage Here

 |  Jan 08 2012, 7:28 PM

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For many, there is only one problem with the Hyundai Veloster: it’s slow. Funky asymmetrical design aside, the interesting new Hyundai product left enthusiasts wanting and so to solve that issue the Korean automaker has unveiled a new turbocharged model today at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.

With a twin-scroll turbo mated to a 1.6-liter 4-cylinder output is rated at 201 hp at 6000 rpm and a significant 195 lb-ft of torque at just 1750 rpm. That’s a serious jump over the standard car’s 138 hp and just 123 lb-ft of torque. With that power (and more standard equipment) comes several hundred pounds of extra weight, putting the Veloster Turbo at 2,800 lbs. More than a MINI Cooper S but less than a Civic Si, Hyundai can still boast a better power to weight ratio than either of those cars.

As for fuel economy, the use of direct injection helps deliver a projected 27/38 rating with the six-speed manual. No numbers for the dual-clutch six-speed automatic are yet available.

In the transmission department both a six-speed manual and six-speed dual-clutch automatic are available, with wider gears for the manual, so as to cope with the added power, while the auto-box gets closer gears to help keep it in the ideal power range.

In addition to power Hyundai has also tuned the car’s intake and exhaust notes and has firmed up the steering to improve driver feel. The car also looks noticeably sportier thanks to 18-inch wheels and it’s quite a lot meaner too, thanks to a large, monotone flat-fronted grille and a complete ground effects kit that ends out back with a large diffuser and two center-exit exhaust pipes. To help the car stand out further are Turbo-exclusive LED daytime running lights, as well as an optional Matte Gray paint – the first matte paint finish offered by Hyundai.

GALLERY: 2013 Hyundai Veloster Turbo

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See AutoGuide’s First Look Video of the Veloster Turbo below:

Continue Reading…

 |  Jan 08 2012, 4:27 PM

Part of “the biggest statement Lincoln has ever made at an auto show” is the MKZ sedan concept, which is set to debut at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show right around the corner.

Up until now, we haven’t even had a single idea on what the concept may look like, but Lincoln has released the first official teaser of the sedan ahead of the show. The photo reveals the return of the full-width taillight for Lincoln, but more importantly proves that a fully new redesigned vehicle for the brand is the right direction to help Ford reinvigorate sales of their luxury brand.

AutoGuide will have more on its official debut at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show. Until then, see the complete show preview here.

 |  Jan 08 2012, 1:16 PM

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Cadillac has been steadily improving its products for a decade, shedding its old man stigma in favor of a new brand identity, favoring luxury with a performance twist. After all this time, on the eve of the Detroit Auto Show, the GM luxury division is finally ready to put its money where its mouth is, launching the ATS as a direct rival to the segment leading BMW 3 Series.

With a choice of a 4-cylinder, turbo 4-cylinder or V6, the ATS matches solid power with one of the lowest curb weights in the segment, with Caddy claiming the ATS will come in at under 3,400 lbs.

Weight reduction was key in the development of the ATS, helping to maximize the performance and efficiency of the powertrains while making the vehicle more nimble overall. Cadillac says every component of the vehicle was checked to see if a lighter alternative could be found. To help keep weight to a minimum the ATS features an aluminum hood, magnesium engine mounts and “natural-fiber” door trim panels. The result shows in the vehicle’s balance as well, with a 51/49 weight distribution.

Based on an all-new rear-drive architecture, the ATS uses a MacPherson front suspension and the brand’s first 5-link independent rear end. Both automatic and manual transmissions will be offered, as will all-wheel drive.

To maximize performance the ATS comes with an adjustable Magnetic Ride Control suspension standard, a ZF variable electric steering system and 17-inch wheels. Brembo brakes and 18-inch wheels are optional.

As mentioned, three powertrains will be available with a base 2.5-liter 4-cylinder making 200 hp and 188 lb-ft of torque. A mid-level turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder will deliver 270 hp and 260 lb-ft of torque from just 2400 rpm, while a top-level direct-injection 3.6L V6 makes 318 hp and 267 lb-ft. Cadillac says the ATS will get over 30 mpg highway – aided in part by grille shutters that close at highways speeds.

In terms of design, the ATS is clearly a Cadillac, with an overall shape similar to that of the CTS, while taking design cues from the new XTS flagship sedan. Most evident is a wider two-piece grille that’s still imposing but toned-down on the chrome.

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Inside the cabin is a solid leap forward, using real wood, metal and carbon fiber as well as hand-stitched leather on the instrument panel, console and doors. Numerous color options are available and Cadillac says the cabin was designed to offer a driver-focused experience. Of note, sport seats with power-adjustable side bolsters will be available.

A focal point in the cabin is Cadillac’s new CUE telematics system, designed to be both high-tech and easy-to-use, with iPad like controls on the 8-inch LCD screen.

In addition, Cadillac has stuffed its new car with numerous safety and convenience technologies that include: a back-up camera, full speed adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, blind spot monitoring, adaptive forward lighting, hill hold assist, a collision alert system and even intelligent brake assist that will stop the car on its own (going forward or in reverse) if a collision is detected.

“More than just another new entry, the ATS aims to change the status quo of the European-dominated segment,” says Caddy VP of marketing Don Butler.

The 2013 Cadillac ATS will go on sale this summer.

GALLERY: 2013 Cadillac ATS

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See AutoGuide’s Complete 2012 Detroit Auto Show Coverage Here

 |  Jan 07 2012, 5:00 PM

Ford intended to roll out a slow unveiling campaign for its important 2013 Ford Fusion sedan ahead of the upcoming Detroit Auto Show. However, a minor bug in its iPad teaser app revealed a complete front-three-quarter view of the new car. Acting quickly, the image has since been removed.

The iPad app only launched earlier in December and despite the rather limited amount of information, the new image leak looks to be very promising. Featuring a sporty and aggressive profile, the new Fusion also wears a new Ford corporate grill (also seen on the new Ford Focus Electric Vehicle). Overall, the exterior is handsome and well proportioned.

Moreover, we reported last week that the new Fusion will feature a trick lane-departure warning device as well. Be on the look-out for more information regarding the Fusion after its official revealing at the upcoming Detroit Auto Show on Monday and for a complete show preview see here.

[Source: Autoblog]

 |  Jan 07 2012, 1:30 PM

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One of the debuts everyone has been anxiously awaiting for has been leaked, with the all-new 2013 Dodge Dart hitting the interwebs ahead of its official 2012 Detroit Auto Show debut.

The first Chrysler product to be based on a Fiat architecture, the 2013 Dodge Dart looks sporty, contemporary and honestly, very refreshing to see. Essentially a replacement from the now defunct Caliber, the Dart looks to be in an entirely different league than what it’s replacing. The vehicle itself is based on the Alfa Romeo’s Giulietta platform and once it hits American soil it’ll be available with three different four-cylinder engines.

A 2.0L  packs 160-hp while a 2.4L will have 184-hp. A 1.4L turbocharged powerplant that is also seen in the Abarth 500 will feature 160-hp. The front-wheel-drive compact will feature Fiat Group’s six-speed, dual-clutch transmission with a six-speed manual option but ultimately will get an all-new nine-speed transmission that is currently being developed by the ZF Group.

AutoGuide.com will be on hand at the official debut at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show, so stay tuned as we’ll have more photos and details on this new stunner from Dodge.

Check out the video of the all-new 2013 Dodge Dart below and see our complete 2012 Detroit Auto Show Coverage here.

GALLERY: 2013 Dodge Dart

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 |  Jan 06 2012, 9:45 AM

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The battle axes are sharpened and starting to swing in Germany between the three largest luxury car makers, as Audi admits for the first time that they plan to sell their compact Q3 SUV in America.

The Volkswagen-based luxury brand has been hinting and teasing the notion that we might get the Q3 on North American soil, but until now there wasn’t any way to be sure. Now Audi has confirmed it will reveal a Q3 “Vail” Concept at the Detroit Auto Show on Monday, using the vehicle as part of a larger strategy to overtake BMW as the top-selling luxury brand by 2015.

“The next pillar of the market that we have to conquer is the United States,” Audi CEO Rupert Stadler said in London on Thursday. “We see opportunities in the SUV and sedan segments.”

Audi has been growing as a brand outside the U.S. but making a more solid footprint in the American market is essential for them to meet their goal. Here in the States BMW and Mercedes still have a strong grip on luxury sales, but by introducing smaller cars, Audi may be able to change that. Along with the Q3, Audi is expected to deliver several versions of its next generation A3, including a sedan.

Another key point in their strategy will be manufacturing cars domestically rather than shipping and therefore significantly limiting availability to consumers, something BMW and Mercedes have already figured out.

It isn’t as easy as flipping a switch, though, according to Stadler, Audi is finally profitable in America, giving them the confidence to go from wading into full swim.

“In the next decade, we will have to think about the next icon in the Audi brand,” Stadler said. Given the strong trend toward smaller, more economy-minded cars, we’re eager to see what he has up his sleeve.

GALLERY: Audi A3 Concept

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[Source: Automotive News]

 |  Jan 05 2012, 8:00 PM

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Scion will be doing away with their Matchbox-style vehicle display at the upcoming 2012 Detroit Auto Show to make way for their new “Thunderdome” experience.

The Matchbox-style display has been used by Scion for the last five years at all major auto shows, but with the new 2013 Scion FR-S making its North American debut, Scion knew they had to do something newer, bigger and better.

Scion’s new booth space at the Detroit Auto Show will be 30-percent larger than last year’s, featuring an expansive product and media theater nicknamed “Thunderdome.” A 15-foot-tall, overhead LED surround structure will enclose the new exhibit with the 2013 Scion FR-S at the center of it all. And rightfully so, as the new rear-wheel-drive sports car is sure to be a huge hit in America – read our review on the new FR-S here.

In total, the Scion display will have nine products on hand, including their iQ micro sub-compact. Each product will have their own zone and video wall with digital product information and comparison tool. Those attending the show will also get to tinker with Scion’s sX, an award-winning experience that features branded content, user participation and information sharing.

GALLERY: Scion FR-S

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See AutoGuide’s complete 2012 Detroit Auto Show Preview Here

 |  Jan 05 2012, 10:33 AM

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Scion has announced it will show its new FR-S sports car to the public at the Detroit Auto Show next week. The new flagship vehicle for the youth-oriented brand, the FR-S is essentially a rebadged version of the Toyota GT 86 (or just Toyota 86), which will go on sale in other markets later this year.

Powered by a 200-hp 2.0-liter boxer 4-cylinder engine with direct injection it can be had with either a 6-speed manual or six-speed automatic.

Weighing just 2,700 lbs, it boasts a 53/47 weight distribution and a center of gravity that is among the lowest of any production car.

GALLERY: 2013 Scion FR-S Reveal

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GALLERY: 2013 Scion FR-S

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Click here to read AutoGuide’s Scion FR-S Review, or watch our video review below:

Continue Reading…

 |  Jan 05 2012, 10:03 AM

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Subaru will use next week’s Detroit Auto Show to stage the first North American showing of its new BRZ sports car.

Co-developed with Toyota, the BRZ is an unconventional Subaru as it is rear-wheel drive and not all-wheel drive. It does, however, feature a 4-cylinder boxer powerplant, which allows the car to have an ultra-low center of gravity and an excellent weight balance. With a low curb weight of just 2,700 lbs, the BRZ makes 200-hp and 151 lb-ft of torque.

Mechanically similar to the Toyota GT 86 (to be sold in North America as the Scion FR-S), we’ve already had a chance to drive that car and you can see our review here.

Pricing for the BRZ has yet to be announced but Subaru has said the car will be available at dealerships starting in late spring.

GALLERY: Subaru BRZ

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See AutoGuide’s complete 2012 North American International Auto Show Preview here.

And discuss this story at SubaruBRZForum.com

 |  Jan 05 2012, 9:32 AM

As we get closer and closer to the start date for the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, MI., more and more rumors are circulating the web as to what will be unveiled at this years show.

One such rumor is in regards to a mystery GM concept. Sources suggest it will be a Chevrolet product, and the name that has been kicking around the most is the Chevelle.

Rumors regarding a return of the Chevelle has been around for two years now and was initially expected to bow at the L.A. Auto Show two years ago, but all we got was a scale model. Many expected that the concept would have been unveiled at the Chicago Auto Show, but that never happened either.

So could Detroit play host to this much anticipated concept? Will the new Chevelle be as cool as the 1970 model (pictured)? And will it be called the Chevelle or something else, as GM has the name “Chicane” also trademarked.

With the first press day only a few days away, you won’t have to wait too long to find out the answer.

[Source: Jalopnik]

 |  Jan 04 2012, 10:30 AM

There was a time, not so long ago, when Porsche decided they didn’t need to participate at the North American International Auto Show because Detroit, Michigan wasn’t the right demographic market for their products.

Oh, how times have changed. Not only has Porsche returned to the venue, but they are staging a World Premiere of one of their most important models, the latest 911 Cabrio (991 Coupe pictured above).

Those who will be in Detroit (that includes us) will be the first to lay eyes on the drop-top version of the 991-generation model Cabriolet.

Bernhard Maier, a Porsche AG board of management member for sales and marketing said; “The USA is and remains an important market for Porsche with good growth prospects. Detroit was deliberately chosen for the world premiere of the new 911 Cabrio because the USA is far and away our largest 911 Cabrio market.”

The latest generation of 911 will go on sale on our turf next month, with the Cabrio following a few months later. So if you’re rich and you know it, you now know when to visit your local area Porsche dealer.

 |  Jan 04 2012, 10:00 AM

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Taking center stage at Porsche’s return to the Detroit Auto Show next week will be the all-new 911 Cabriolet. It’s not, however, the biggest news the German sports car maker will announce.

Rather, Porsche will confirm that later this year it will begin sales of a diesel version of its top seller, the Cayenne SUV. Pricing has yet to be announced, but the luxury SUV (which is already on sale in other markets) is powered by a 3.0-liter V6, making 245 horsepower and 405 lb-ft of torque, and is capable of a 0-60 time of 7.6 seconds.

Last year Porsche Cayenne sales in the U.S. accounted for 55.6 percent of total sales.

GALLERY: Porsche Cayenne Diesel

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See AutoGuide’s complete 2012 North American International Auto Show Coverage here

 |  Jan 04 2012, 9:30 AM

We’ve already been given the scoop on Volvo‘s upcoming V60 Plug-in Hybrid, however, given the nature of that vehicle, it was hardly surprising that Europe was most definitely its target audience.

Considering that North American (and Chinese) buyers clearly have a strong preference for gasoline engined vehicles over diesels, as well as SUVs over wagons, Volvo has now announced that it will build an XC60 Plug-in Hybrid with a petrol engine for these markets, which will make its world debut at the 2012 North American International Auto Show in Detroit .

The news is particularly welcomed by US dealers, providing a much needed boost in the shape of a green “halo” vehicle, at a time when much of Volvo’s vehicle lineup is essentially marking time and (apart from volume sellers like the XC60 and S60) significantly new models are still a ways off.

The XC60 gas/electric Plug-in Hybrid will sport an electric motor producing 70 hp, along with a four-cylinder gasoline engine, resulting in a total power output of 350 hp. According to Volvo, this version will be able to travel a distance of up to 35 miles on electricity alone as well as delivering some 50 miles per gallon in Hybrid mode.

It also uses an innovative electric AWD system, with the gasoline engine powering the front wheels, while electric power can be fed to the rear wheels when accelerating or in low grip situations.

“A plug-in hybrid is the ideal eco-car for today’s conditions,”  declared Volvo President and CEO Stefan Jacoby. “It gives a large proportion of motorists sufficient range on electricity for their daily commute. More than half of U.S. drivers cover less than 30 miles a day. With its three driving modes, the XC60 Plug-in Hybrid Concept also offers the owner a conventional model’s interior space, safety, performance and long range. It gives the driver uncompromising flexibility to cover every type of motoring need.”

Although deliveries of the European diesel/electric V60 Plug-In Hybrid are scheduled to begin late this year, so far there’s been no word on US availability of the XC60 Plug-In Hybrid, though it’s likely cars will be on dealer lots sometime during 2013.

GALLERY: Volvo XC60 Plug-in Hybrid

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See AutoGuide’s complete 2012 Detroit Auto Show Preview Here

 |  Jan 04 2012, 8:30 AM

A couple weeks back, we saw the first teaser of Toyotas upcoming NS4 Concept Plug-in Hybrid vehicle that is set to debut at the upcoming 2012 Detroit Auto Show. Now that the show is just around the corner, Toyota has shared a video about its new advanced plug-in hybrid.

Little is known about the NS4 other than that it’ll show off Toyota’s next-generation of plug-in hybrid technology. But based on the video, the concept is clearly very futuristic, with its interior details really getting us excited for its debut.

The NS4 Concept will debut alongside the Prius c Hybrid at the upcoming Detroit Auto Show.

See the video below:
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 |  Jan 04 2012, 8:00 AM

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Lexus has released new photos of its stunning new concept car, pointing to the future of the brand’s styling as well as a possible new model. The LF-LC hybrid concept adapts the brand’s new grille, as first seen on the 2013 GS, while looking like a luxurious 2+2 version of the LFA supercar.

Lexus has said little about its new super coupe, although badging on the side has revealed that it is a hybrid. In a brief release Lexus says the car, “is envisioned as offering Advanced Lexus Hybrid Drive to deliver both driving performance and fuel efficiency.”

Look for full details to come with the car’s official debut planned for the North American International Auto Show next week.

GALLERY: Lexus LF-LC Concept

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Click here for AutoGuide’s complete 2012 Detroit Auto Show Coverage

Discuss this story at LF-LCForum.com

 |  Jan 03 2012, 7:39 PM

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Nissan‘s all-new Pathfinder Concept is set to debut at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show on January 9th and the Japanese automaker has just teased us with two real short video clips highlighting the new SUV’s front and back.

The videos are complete teasers, but it clearly showcases the Pathfinder’s traditional SUV hallmarks that have been renovated for the new platform, complete with a dramatic new aerodynamic design.

Nissan continued to brag about the upcoming Pathfinder Concept’s features, which include “thoughtful” technology, seating for seven, and plenty of cargo room. The four-wheel-drive Pathfinder Concept previews the upcoming next-generation production Pathfinder that is set to go on sale next fall.

Check out the two short videos after the break.

GALLERY: Nissan Pathfinder Concept Teasers

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