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During our drive of the Chevrolet Camaro Convertible, we chatted with one engineer about GM’s Zeta platform, which underpins rear-drive full size cars. Among remarking how much we adored the Pontiac G8 sedan and how we longed for a revival of the car, the engineer broke into a broad grin and said “well, these things have a way of happening.”
Cut to Saturday, where GM’s Mark Reuss announced the debut of a vehicle based on the Camaro platform at the Chicago Auto Show. The only other car built on the platform is the Holden Commodore, which formerly underpinned the G8 and is the basis for the Chevrolet Caprice PPV, a model only sold to law enforcement agencies for police duty.
In recent weeks, photos of the Caprice have emerged that show it looking very ready for civilian duty (seen above). Gone are the steel wheels, push bars and flashing lights, and to the untrained eye, the car could be any other full-size American sedan.
There’s a strong chance the car will be a new variant of the Caprice, although a high-performance Camaro Z28 is also rumored to bow in Chicago. With Chrysler’s new 300 sedan (and Dodge’s Charger) being the only rear drive full size car on the market (and receiving rave reviews), Chevrolet will certainly want to capitalize on this and smash the 300′s monopoly. The only question is whether the vehicle will be the long-wheelbase police version (based on the Holden Statesman) or the standard length Commodore based car that was previously given to Pontiac as the G8. Engine choices will likely be the familiar 3.6L V6 making 300 horsepower or more, and a small-block V8 of indeterminate output.
[Source: Detroit News]
See AutoGuide’s complete 2011 Chicago Auto Show Preview here, with coverage starting Wednesday, February 9th.
In the hubub surrounding the Hyundai Sonata and Hyundai Genesis, the Hyundai Azera gets overlooked as neither fish nor fowl. The full-size front driver has fallen off the map.
Evidently, there is still a market for the Azera, and the latest generation has just been launched in Korea as the (appropriately named) Grandeur. The new Azera is two inches longer than the outgoing model, and receives the new 3.8L Lambda V6 to replace the current car’s 3.3L unit that’s become antiquated after spending far too long on the market.
The Azera’s sharp new styling could make it a pretty potent competitor to cars like the Ford Taurus and the Toyota Avalon, which may put driving enthusiasts to sleep, but have a substantial following among people looking for something to eat up highway miles during long-distance driving. Look for the new Azera sometime in 2012.
The latest batch of Hyundai Azera photos have surfaced, and the vehicle looks to be following in the footsteps of its little brother, the Sonata, by looking nearly identical to its mid-size counterpart.
With its re-design, the Azera moves from its position as a stodgy-looking competitor to the Toyota Avalon and towards a sportier full-size car. Honestly, we can’t see why such a vehicle is necessary when the Sonata seems to be able to do it all, but with no V6 option on the Sonata, the Azera will likely have that role covered, and a 3.8L Lambda V6 is the most likely candidate.
Gallery: Hyundai Azera
[Source: Car Throttle]
General Motors is hoping that their next Chevrolet Impala, due in 2014, will be looked at as more than just fodder for the rental car lot. With a new platform shared with the Buick Lacrosse, the next Impala, due in 2014, should represent a significant jump in both style and performance – although based on the current car, that’s not saying too much.
The report in Automotive News also points to a possible rear-drive performance sedan for Chevrolet, which would almost certainly be based on the rear-drive Holden Commodore platform. The car would also be slated for a 2014 release, and one Chevrolet insider told Automotive News that “we are going back to the essence of what Chevrolet was and stood for — well-designed, beautiful, sculptured pieces, with lots of customer value.” Chevrolet is selling a Holden model to police fleets as the Chevrolet Caprice, but sales to the public are not planned at this time.
[Source: Automotive News]