Detroit Auto Show News
By Ron Amadon
Several Makers Could Not Wait for the Opening Curtain
Sunday evening Kia showed off Stinger, a long teased five passenger fastback sports sedan that “promises to be the highest-performance production vehicle in the company’s history…”
Kia said the two offered engines are still under development, a standard 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that produces an estimated 255 horsepower at approximately 6,200 rpm. Max torque of 260 lb.-ft. is available from 1,400 – 4,000 rpm.
But enthusiasts will likely be lured to the 3.3-liter twin-turbo V6 engine, anticipated to produce 365 horsepower at an estimated 6,000 rpm and offer max torque of 376 lb.-ft. from 1,300 – 4,500 rpm. Kia is targeting 5.1 seconds to 62 mph and a top speed of 167 mph with the six.
The transmission will be an eight speed automatic, first offered in the KL900 sedan. There will be paddle shifts and rear or all-wheel drive will be offered.
Stinger’s measurements will be 190.2 inches long, 73.6 wide and it will ride on a 114.4 inch wheelbase, dimensions that Kia said are more generous than “others in the segment” citing the Audi A4 and the BMW 4 Gran Coupe.
The suspension consists of a MacPherson front and multi-link rear and the operator will have control of ride-damping and handling traits. Improved high-speed stability is achieved when the system stiffens the front shocks and softens the rear. The system is accessed through five drive modes (a Kia first): Personal, Eco, Sport, Comfort and Smart.
A Head-Up Display will offer speed readings, along with navigation, audio and cruise control settings as well as Blind Spot Detection.
The Stinger is planned to go on sale in the U.S. late this year and pricing will be announced closer to introduction.
Kia said the new offering is aimed at BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Infiniti, and Lexus. Based on early numbers, performance wise, the Stinger should do just that.
Fiat Chrysler announced it will invest $1 billion to retool two plants and create 2,000 jobs. The Warren Truck Assembly Plant in Michigan will be spruced up to produce a new Jeep Wagoneer and Grand Wagoneer. Some of the money will go to the Toledo Assembly Complex in Ohio to build a Jeep pickup. “The conversion of our industrial footprint completes this stage of our transformation as we respond to the shift in consumer tastes to trucks and SUVs, and as we continue to reinforce the U.S. as a global manufacturing hub for those vehicles at the heart of the SUV and truck market,” said Sergio Marchionne, Chief Executive Officer of FCA N.V.
Google’s Self-Driving Project, known now as Waymo, displayed a fully autonomous Chrysler Pacifica van now equipped with the firm’s proprietary software and hardware. Waymo said this is the first self-driving minivan in the world. Testing will begin later this month on public roads in California and Arizona. Backers said the van’s radar can spot a football helmet two football fields away. The vans are said to contain updated sensors, all-new computer and other major system updates.
Over at GM, the covers were taken off the 2018 GMC Terrain that will be available with three new turbocharged engines, including a turbo diesel. The lineup will be a 1.5-liter turbo four, a 2.0-liter turbo four and the 1.6- liter diesel. The two gas engines will be married to a new 9 speed transmission. Further, the Terrain went on a heck of a diet, losing about 465 pounds and is 3 inches shorter than the current model. It will go on sale this summer in five trim levels, including the popular top-of-the-line Denali. It will get additional standard features including a heated steering wheel, navigation, Bose premium 7-speaker sound system and a hands-free programmable power liftgate.
Ford was not about to sit out the night before press day party, so they unveiled the 2018 F-150. The new engine in town is a 3.0-liter Power Stroke V6 turbo diesel along with “enhanced” V6 and V8 offerings. New safety gear includes Pre-Collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection and there are restyled grilles, headlamps, and bumpers. Tailgates now read F-150 and there are new tail light designs. The F-150 has been the nations’ top selling vehicle for 35 years.
Kicking off festivities bright and early Monday morning will be the naming of the North American Car of the Year along with truck and utility vehicle. The Chevrolet Bolt, Genesis G90, and Volvo S90 are the finalists for Car of the Year. Truck of the Year contenders are the Ford F-Series Super Duty, Honda Ridgeline, and Nissan Titan. The new Utility Vehicle of the Year honors will go to either the Chrysler Pacifica, Jaguar F-Pace or the Mazda CX-9.
We will have bulletin coverage in the 7 am Eastern Time zone once the winners have been announced. Following that, we will see a new Toyota Camry, Audi A5, and Lexus LS among others. So keep your mouse headed in our direction on Monday.