Audi gave us a hint of future designs in the form of the prologue show car, and many feel it is a look at what the upcoming A9 model might look like. It is somewhat shorter than the current A8. The concept car sports 605 horsepower from a 4.0-liter biturbo V8 and a 0-60 time of just 3.7 seconds. “A luxurious lounge,” is how Audi describes the interior with an infotainment system that “brings driver and passenger into dialog with one another.” Basically there is a touchscreen that runs the full width of the dash panel that will allow, for example, the co-pilot to select a navigation route and forward it to the driver. Presumably that could include pleadings for a coffee and bathroom breaks.
Mercedes introduced a new luxury car with an old name – Maybach. It is 8.1 inches longer than the S600, on which it is based, with much of the extra room going to those in the rear seats. There is a panoramic sunroof, along with the expected leather trim, leg rests to the rear, massaging seats and two silver-plated champagne flutes. Under the hood is a 6.0-liter twin turbo V12 (!) offering 523 horsepower. Mercedes will offer this car next April at a starting price of somewhere around $200,000.
Arriving early next year will be a new small crossover from Honda based on the Fit. Called the HR-V it will feature multiple seating/cargo modes including the Fit’s reconfigurable second row “Magic Seat.” Look for 58.8 cubic feet of storage space helped by the fact that it will be about 9 inches longer than the Fit. A 1.8-liter four is up front with 138 horsepower and 127 lb-ft of torque mated to a CVT. Two-wheel or all-wheel drive will be offered and there will be three trim levels. No word yet on price.
Wowing them at the Lexus stand was the LF-C2 concept in the form of a 2+2 roadster. “The LF-C2 concept shows what’s in store for our brand’s future design direction,” said Jeff Bracken, Lexus group vice president and general manager. It is 185.6 inches long or roughly three inches shower than a Mustang. No word on power trains, but it sure was a looker and something should spark some convertible life into the Lexus lineup.
Scion announced that it will be overhauling its lineup with the announcement that a production version of the iM concept car and another new Scion model will be displayed in April at the New York show. It also plans to bring three other new products to market in three years. The concept iM is pictured.
Here’s some welcome news from Volvo. It announced a “Complete renewal” of its entire model range in five years with its CEO saying the brand will “not only stay in the U.S., we will prosper.”
So some good news from Scion and Volvo and now it is on to day two for the press at the L.A. Show and naming of the Green Car of the year.
Car and Driver is out with its Top 10 cars of the year. They are the BMW M235i, Cadillac CTS, Corvette Stingray, Ford Mustang GT, Honda Accord, Mazda 3 & 6, Porsche Boxster/Cayman, Tesla Model S 60 and the Volks Golf/GTI. You can see more in the January 2015 edition.