Jump to content
  • Detroit Auto Show

    William Maley

    Return of the Continental!

    It was almost eight months ago when Lincoln rolled out the Continental concept at the New York Auto Show, and today at the Detroit Auto Show, the production Continental was revealed.
     
    In its transition from concept to production model, the Continental hasn't changed much. The front end still features a rectangular mesh grille, but there are different headlights and less chrome. The side profile shows off 'Continental' nameplates on the front doors, and the door handles are integrated into the beltline.
     
    The interior is mostly the same as the concept in terms of design. The front seats boast 30-way power-adjustments, while leather and a mix of aluminum wood trim line the dash and door panels. Back-seat passengers will get a generous amount of legroom and the ability to recline. An optional Revel audio system will keep everyone entertained, while Active Noise cancellation and laminated glass will keep the outside world out.
     
    Lincoln has only announced one engine for the Continental; 3.0L twin-turbo V6 engine producing 400 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque. A six-speed automatic and all-wheel drive will come standard. Expect more information on other powertrains to come out closer to the Continental's launch.
     
    The Continental will boast Lincoln Drive Control which offers the driver the choice of three modes that alter the behavior of the engine, suspension, and steering.
     
    The Continental arrives at dealers starting this fall.
     
    Source: Lincoln
     

     
    You can follow all of our 2016 Detroit Auto Show coverage here.
     
    Press Release is on Page 2


     
    All-New Lincoln Continental Delivers Quiet Luxury: Elegant, Effortlessly Powerful, Serene
    Lincoln Motor Company introduces its elegant new flagship – the all-new Continental – coming this fall Effortless power comes from new 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V6 engine that produces a projected 400 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque1; advanced safety technology is also featured Serene interior offers the comfort of Lincoln's innovative Perfect Position Seat, spaciousness, rear seat amenities, Revel® audio system and top-grade materials

    DETROIT, Jan. 12, 2016 – Lincoln Motor Company heralds the return of its flagship – the all-new Lincoln Continental – an elegant, effortlessly powerful, serene full-size sedan that delivers quiet luxury to the industry’s most discerning customers.
     

    Beginning this fall, Continental offers first-class travel for clients in America and China, bringing warm, human touches and a contemporary design.
     
    The full-size sedan is designed to appeal to culturally progressive clients who define luxury on their own terms – craving superior quality, craftsmanship and safety.
     
    “The Continental name has long been associated with the ultimate in Lincoln beauty and luxury,” said Kumar Galhotra, president of Lincoln. “With the all-new model, we are focusing on creating more human, personally tailored experiences for our clients – providing what we call quiet luxury.”
     
    Elegance through design
    All-new Continental design is thoroughly modern, with Lincoln’s new signature grille and an athletic profile that is dynamic and progressive.
     
    Lincoln’s new flagship welcomes drivers with a brand-exclusive lighting sequence. As the driver approaches the car with the key, LED signature lighting in the lower front fascia and taillamps subtly engages, while signature lighting in the headlamps awakens in a fluid motion. Lincoln mat lights then brighten the pavement around the front doors, helping show any hazards, while select interior lights warmly illuminate the cabin.
     
    Continental door handles are designed to offer elegant and effortless entry with new E-latch door release. The release is discreetly integrated within the beltline, leaving the body side clean. With the gentle touch of a button, the vehicle’s doors pop open, then use available power-cinching technology to automatically close and secure.
     
    An elegant available panoramic sunroof covers nearly the entire roof area; the front half slides up and over the rear – creating a large open-air driving experience and an even greater feeling of spaciousness for up to five Continental occupants.
     
    Effortless power
    Continental offers available technologies that help create better and safer drivers.
     
    The all-new Lincoln-exclusive 3.0-liter V6 engine with twin turbochargers that produces a projected 400 horsepower and 400 lb.-ft. of torque [1] is designed for smooth, responsive, yet quiet power.
     
    Continental’s available all-wheel-drive system is paired with Dynamic Torque Vectoring that transfers torque on demand to the appropriate rear wheel when driving through corners – providing confident handling and stability.
     
    Lincoln Drive Control provides the driver a choice of three settings – comfort, normal and sport – adapting steering and suspension settings to tailor ride and handling. Available adaptive steering helps optimize steering response, enabling the vehicle to react more smoothly and precisely to driver input.
     
    Continental’s Pre-Collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection is designed to enhance occupant safety. A system of cameras and sensors detects if a potential collision may occur, then automatically applies the brakes, bringing the vehicle to a full stop to help avoid or reduce impact. [2]
     
    Effortless assistance for the daily commute is available with optional adaptive cruise control, which can automatically slow Continental in stop-and-go traffic – resuming speed when traffic clears.
     
    To take the stress out of parallel and perpendicular parking, the new 360-degree camera system uses views from cameras mounted in the grille, decklid and 180-degree side mirrors, then seamlessly stitches these snapshots together to create an image in the screen so the driver can see around the car – as if a camera is overhead.
     
    Serene interior
    The all-new Continental interior is designed to help all occupants rejuvenate.
     
    One highlight is Lincoln’s new Perfect Position Seats – inspired by private jets and high-end office furniture – that can be adjusted up to 30 ways. The patented design allows the seat to adjust to an individual’s body shape and weight for optimal stretch and comfort. Available features of these seats include massage, heat and cooling; and independent thigh extensions to provide support.
     
    Rear passengers can enjoy first-class travel amenities, too, with such available features as audio and climate controls, sunshades, and reclining, heated, cooled and massaging seats. The streamlined interior provides generous rear legroom.
     
    Continental occupants also can enjoy an available Revel® audio system developed to work in concert with the interior design and acoustics, transforming the cabin into a personal amphitheater with three distinct listening modes – Stereo, Audience and On Stage. Use of the E-latch release enables optimal speaker positioning in the Continental doors, alongside the conveniently located seat controls.
     
    Innovations in managing vehicle noise and vibration, including Active Noise Control and acoustic laminated glass create a quiet, comfortable environment conducive to conversation or contemplation.
     
    For those seeking the highest expression of Lincoln luxury, three Lincoln Black Label designer themes are available – Chalet, Thoroughbred and Continental-exclusive Rhapsody.
    Inside, opulent materials include leather seating, leather-wrapped console and instrument panel, unique stitching, genuine wood or aluminum appliqués.
     
    All models feature new design details. Stitching on the seats is specified at six to seven stitches per inch for a couture-like appearance, and the slats of the center console door are laser-cut to maximize consistency of the grain pattern.
     
    The all-new Lincoln Continental will be produced at Flat Rock Assembly Plant in Michigan. The Lincoln flagship goes on sale this fall.

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
    December 14, 2011
    Today, Cadillac has revealed the powertrain lineup for their new ATS sedan. The lineup includes two fours and a six.
    The base ATS engine will be naturally aspirated 2.5L I-4 engine. GM hasn't released any details about it, but it looks like to be the same engine found under the new Chevrolet Malibu, which gets 190 HP and 180 lb-ft of torque.
    The next engine up is a 2.0L turbocharged I-4.Now before you go out and think this is the same engine you find in the Regal Turbo and GS, it's not. This 2.0L turbo is a part of a new Ecotec engine lineup and will use an electronically controlled twin-scroll turbocharger to keep its torque curve flat. The 2.0L Turbo is rated at 270 HP and 260 lb-ft of torque. The ATS will be the first vehicle to use this engine and could possibly find it's way into the new Malibu.
    The top engine is the venerable 3.6L direct injected V6 making 318 HP and 275 lb-ft of torque.
    Press Release is on Page 2

    New 2.0L Turbo Engine Boosts the Cadillac ATS


    135 horsepower per liter among top-performing engines in the world
    Compact ATS debuts at North American International Auto Show in Detroit

    DETROIT – A new high-performance 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder engine will debut in the all-new 2013 Cadillac ATS compact luxury sedan, which will be revealed at the 2012 North American International Auto Show in January.
    The Cadillac-tuned, direct-injected engine will produce an estimated 270 horsepower (201 kW). At 135 horsepower per liter, it will be one of the most power-dense automotive engines, besting the highest-performing engines from luxury competitors such as Audi, BMW and Mercedes.
    “This engine is the perfect match for the new ATS, which will be a refined performance luxury sedan,” said Don Butler, Cadillac vice president of Global Marketing. “The 2.0T has an exceptionally smooth and responsive power curve that will make the ATS nimble, quick and fun to drive.”
    The new 2.0T highlights a broad engine lineup that will power the ATS which is slated to begin production next summer. Cadillac will also offer a normally aspirated 2.5L four cylinder engine and a 3.6L V-6 engine in the ATS.
    The 2.0T builds on the advanced-technology heritage of previous GM turbo engines with features that enhance efficiency, durability and refinement.
    Among the 2.0T engine’s highlights: a direct-injection twin-cam, four-valve-per-cylinder engine with continuously variable valve timing; twin-scroll turbocharger with air-to-air intercooler; forged-steel crankshaft with modular balance shaft system; and a two-stage variable-displacement oil pump with jet-spray piston cooling.
    Overall engine friction is reduced by up to 16 percent. The low-friction design means engine power is delivered more efficiently.
    Proprietary computational fluid dynamics analysis techniques were used to develop an all-new combustion system with a higher compression ratio, which also helped boost efficiency.
    “The 2.0T is one of the most advanced and efficient engines of its kind, and contributes to the ATS’s exceptional balance of performance and great fuel efficiency,” said Mike Anderson, chief engineer for the 2.0T engine.
    The 2.0T has a wide torque curve, delivering 90 percent of its peak 260 lb-ft. of torque (353 Nm) from 1,500 rpm to 5,800 rpm – giving the ATS the feeling of immediate power, whether from launch at a stop light or during higher-speed maneuvers, such as passing.
    The turbocharger generates up to 20 pounds of boost and its twin-scroll design helps optimize power availability, virtually eliminating turbo lag and helping deliver a broad power band.
    “It has the exhilarating, responsive power available when you want it, yet can provide the fuel efficiency that will make the ATS a fully competitive vehicle in global markets,” Anderson said.
    At 135 hp/L, the ATS 2.0T four-cylinder turbo engine has the highest power density among key competitors, including:
    Audi A4’s 2.0L turbo (105.5 hp/L)
    BMW M3’s V-8 (103.5 hp/L)
    Lexus IS F’s V-8 (83.2 hp/L)
    Mercedes-Benz C250’s 1.8L turbo (111.6 hp/L)

    Additional details on the ATS will be announced at the 2012 NAIAS. The ATS will be built at the Lansing Grand River plant alongside the Cadillac CTS Sedan, Coupe and Sport Wagon and V-Series performance cars.

    Blake Noble
    If you're a fan of rear-wheel drive GM muscle, then this year's Detroit Auto Show should give you a decent reason to rejoyce. Photos of the new Chevrolet Code 130R concept have recently begun to hit the internet and, so far, the small, rear-drive Chevy coupe is shaping up to be an interesting proposition.
    The Code 130R is one of two new Chevrolet concept vehicles GM is rolling out for Detroit. With its blistered fenders and square-shouldered roofline, the styling can definitely evoke strong images of the classic 1970 through 1972 Chevelle muscle cars. However, unlike the classic Chevelle, GM says the Code 130R could be capable of up to 40 mpg if it were to go into production thanks in part to its 1.4L turbocharged four-cylinder engine augmented by eAssist technology and linked up to a six-speed manual transmission. The Code 130R is also signficantly smaller as well -- photos suggest that this would be somewhere close to the current BMW 1-Series in size. Depsite its small stature, the Code 130R still has room for four people.
    GM also says that if the Code 130R were to go into production it would carry a price tag somewhere in the ballpark of $25,000. If so, the Subaru BRZ and Scion FR-S may have something to worry about. Now, about that name ...
    Click over to page two to read the press release and view the gallery here.
    Here's a Concept: Chevrolet Puts Next-Gen Buyers in Charge
    Two concept coupes designed to inspire ideas and create discussion
    DETROIT – Chevrolet today introduced two concept coupes at the 2012 North American International Auto Show aimed at inspiring next-generation buyers to take the wheel and suggest ideas for a car they can co-create.
    "Chevrolet has always stood for making the aspirational attainable for all generations" said General Motors North America President Mark Reuss. "These two concepts interpret that vision for a new generation. We're seeking out our newest customers' opinions, listening to their advice, and engaging them in new ways."
    According to U.S. Census data, there are 80 million American consumers approaching 30. They represent 40 percent of today's potential car-buying public and a combined $1 trillion in purchasing power.
    Over the past year, Chevrolet has conversed with young consumers across the United States. Based on their feedback, the Chevrolet concepts explore the styling and functionality this group of new buyers says they are looking for in a car.
    Code 130R, the first Chevrolet concept, is a four-seat coupe with a simple upright profile. Painted in an all-new red metallic paint with matte anodized gold wheels, Code 130R features heritage performance-inspired styling and rear-wheel drive. With an aggressive front fascia, Chevrolet fender flares, straight body side and Chevy crossflag emblem, Code 130R makes a link to Chevrolet's performance heritage.
    Code 130R's designers conceived the turbocharged engine to be tuned to work in tandem with eAssist technology. By shutting off the engine at stops, recapturing braking energy, and smoothing torque during acceleration, this concept takes automotive electrification to the next level and balances turbocharged performance with fuel economy.
    Tru 140S, the second Chevrolet concept is a front-wheel-drive, "affordable exotic" four-seat sporty coupe. The three-door hatchback was designed to be an attractive-yet-affordable sports car. Shown in an all-new matte white with Chevy performance chrome wheels featuring crossflag emblems, Tru 140S is designed to look confident, exotic, expensive and fast. Tru 140S is based off the same platform as the Chevrolet Cruze and the groundbreaking Chevrolet Volt electric vehicle with extended range.
    Tru 140S designers want to demonstrate technologies typically found in more expensive cars, including direct injection and a starter-based stop-start technology, balancing internal combustion and electrification to deliver high value and improved fuel economy.
    The concepts share attributes younger buyers say they value:
    Sedan-sized functionality in performance coupe form that seats four passengers
    Interior connectivity and convenience featuring innovative storage, WiFi, smart phone integration with Chevrolet MyLink and heads-up display
    40 MPG with a 1.4L Turbo Ecotec engine with approximately 150 horsepower
    Possible production price range in the low $20,000s
    "Young customers tell us they want functionality with coupe-like aesthetics. Both the Code and Tru body styles resonated with this audience," said Frank Saucedo, director of the GM North America Advanced Design studio in Los Angeles where the two concepts were developed.
    Inside the concepts, connectivity and personalization enable the individualization that the generation says is essential.
    "This buyer prizes connectivity. Allowing them to stay connected by integrating their personal devices through MyLink and WiFi enabling the vehicle to be their own docking station," said Saucedo. "The interiors currently exist in 2D only. This allows us the flexibility to continue the discussion and encourage more dialogue as we continue to develop these concepts."
    From Detroit, the pair of Chevrolet concepts will travel to major auto shows, key lifestyle events, one-on-one experiences and other venues such as college campuses. Chevrolet also will engage customers using the social media tools that young consumers use to talk with one another.
    "For the car company that can successfully engage this generation, there is a tremendous opportunity," said John McFarland, senior manager for Chevrolet Global Marketing, who heads youth research for the brand. "At Chevrolet, we want to build authentic and meaningful relationships with these customers on their terms. We want to hear what they have to say, engage them in our design process, and give them what they want – not what we think they want."
    * * *
    Founded in 1911 in Detroit, Chevrolet is now one of the world's largest car brands, doing business in more than 140 countries and selling more than 4 million cars and trucks a year. Chevrolet provides customers with fuel-efficient vehicles that feature spirited performance, expressive design, and high quality. More information on Chevrolet models can be found at www.chevrolet.com.
    CHEVROLET CODE 130R CONCEPT COUPE SPECIFICATIONS
    Overview
    Model: Chevrolet Code 130R Concept Coupe
    Body style / driveline: four-passenger coupe, rear-wheel drive
    EPA vehicle class: compact car
    Engine
    1.4L Ecotec turbocharged DOHC I-4 w/ eAssist
    Displacement (cu. in. / cc): 83 / 1364
    Bore and stroke (in. / mm): 2.85 x 3.25 / 72.5 x 82.6
    Block material: cast iron
    Cylinder head material: cast aluminum
    Valvetrain: overhead camshafts, four valves per cylinder, continuously variable valve timing
    Ignition system: individual coil on plug
    Fuel delivery: sequential multi-port fuel injectors with electronic throttle control
    Compression ratio: 9.5:1
    Horsepower (hp / kW): 150 / 110
    Torque (lb.-ft. / Nm): 148 / 200
    Recommended fuel: regular unleaded
    Max engine speed (rpm): 6500
    Emissions controls: close-coupled and underfloor catalytic converters; Quick-Sync 58x ignition system; returnless fuel rail; fast light-off O2 sensor
    Estimated fuel economy (hwy): 40
    Transmissions
    6-speed automatic
    6-speed manual
    Wheels/Tires
    Wheels: 20-inch matte gold
    Tires: P245/40R20
    Dimensions
    Exterior
    Wheelbase (in / mm): 109.3 / 2775
    Overall length (in / mm): 173.1 / 4396
    Overall width (in / mm): 71.5 / 1816
    Overall height (in / mm): 54.7 / 1390
    Track (in / mm):
    front: 60.4 / 1535
    rear: 61.8 / 1569
    Interior
    Seating capacity (front / rear): 2 / 2
    Headroom (in / mm):
    front: 30.7 / 780
    rear: 33.1 / 841
    Note: Information shown is current at time of publication.

    Drew Dowdell

    Cadillac's 3-row crossover finally shows up.

    Cadillac released images and information on their all-new 2020 Cadillac XT6 today.  Based on the same chassis as the GMC Acadia, the new XT6 slots between the XT5 and the Escalade in terms of size and price.  Two trims are available, Premium Luxury and Sport.
    The XT6 is powered by the familiar 3.6 liter V6 with 310 hp. Active fuel management comes standard and allows the engine to run in 4-cylinder mode when V6 power is not needed.  All-Wheel Drive is available on the Premium Luxury and is standard on Sport. The Sport model's AWD is a more advanced active twin-clutch design.  Sport also comes with Continuous Damping Control (note: Not Magnetic ride control - DD) and a faster steering ratio for more enthusiastic performance.  Power is fed through a 9-speed automatic transmission with Electronic Precision Shift. 
    Inside the XT6 provides the driver and all passengers with "the best seat in the house". A contemporary interior aesthetic surround occupants with semi-aniline leather seating surfaces, carbon fiber trim on the Sport, and wood on Premium Luxury models.  Additionally available interior features include an in-cabin air ionizer, heated and ventilated front seats, heated second-row seats,  and a standard heated steering wheel. All models come with 6 USB ports for charging devices.
    Cadillac's CUE Infotainment system now includes 1-touch pairing with users' phones via near field communication and a new rotary controller with intuitive jog functionality. CUE will now allow drivers to store their profile in the cloud for customization across compatible vehicles. 
    Additional CUE features include:
    Updated navigation functionality with natural address entry. Capable of supporting SiriusXM 360L. 4G LTE Wi-Fi® hotspot (includes 3GB or three months of data, whichever comes first). Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for compatible smartphones. Next-generation, 15-watt wireless charging. Teen Driver. The 2020 Cadillac XT6  will be built in Spring Hill TN and will go on sale later this year.
    2020 Cadillac XT6 Debut.pdf

    Drew Dowdell
    Chevrolet unveiled two coupe concepts at the 2012 North American International Auto Show in Detroit today. Chevy is actively courting the sub-30 crowd with these two small coupes with a heavy emphasis on connectivity both virtual and personal. Chevy said that while youth buyers wanted coupes, they also wanted to be able to take their friends with them. Thus the ability to seat adults comfortably in the rear is emphasized. Chevy has also included a high level of digital social connectivity in a way that isn't distracting using the Chevy's MyLink infotainment system.
    The first concept, the Chevrolet Tru 140S, is a front wheel drive "affordable exotic". It is inspired by the sleek lines of Italian supercars. The Tru 140S is based on the Chevrolet Cruze and Volt platforms and features a 1.4 liter turbocharged, direct injection engine with about 150 horsepower. The engine also features automatic start/stop technology for additional fuel economy.

    The Chevrolet Code 130R shares an engine with the Tru 140S, but it turns it 90 degrees for a rear wheel drive arrangement. The Code 130R's upright profile evokes Chevrolet heritage without being retro.
    Though not officially said, we are assuming that the Code 130R rides on the same Alpha platform as the Cadillac ATS shown yesterday since the wheelbase is the same and track is only 0.9 inches wider.

    Both concepts were shown without interiors intentionally. Chevrolet wishes to keep the design and development process open to future ideas.
    Browse the galleries below for your Chevy Coupe goodness.


    William Maley

    Only 2 percent of G-Class buyers will take advantage of it

    Mercedes-Benz has been releasing a surprising amount of information on the upcoming 2019 G-Class before its debut at the Detroit Auto Show. Last month, the German automaker dropped some information concerning the interior. This latest batch of information deals with the off-road capability, something that only a small number of G-Class owners will take advantage of.
    Mercedes says the 2019 G-Class will retain a ladder-type frame, three differential locks, and a low range ratio. The front features an independent suspension setup with double wishbones on the axle. The rear retains a solid axle with four longitudinal control arms on each side. Ground clearance is slightly higher than the current G-Class  - 9.49 vs. 9.26 inches. 
    The 2019 G-Class will also come with 'G-Mode' that automatically adjusts the engine, transmission, suspension, and steering to improve off-road performance. G-Mode will automatically come on when one of the differential locks is engaged. A 360-degree view camera system helps with driving in difficult terrain.
    Mercedes will be fitting the G-Class with a nine-speed automatic transmission. Aside from improving fuel economy, the transmission will make driving the G-Class more comfortable and quieter.
    For now, you can look at pictures of a camouflaged 2019 G-Class tackling Austria's Schõckl Mountain test track.
    Source: Mercedes-Benz
    Press Release is on Page 2


    The new Mercedes-Benz G-Class: The legend on the Schöckl: More control, more comfort
    Every G-Class has to conquer the Schöckl. Mercedes-Benz uses the 1,445 metre high local mountain near the Austrian city of Graz as a test track. The 5.6 km route includes gradients of up to 60 percent and lateral inclinations of up to 40 percent. During the development stage, a "G" has to endure a good 2,000 strenuous kilometres on this very demanding course. The new G-Class masters the route with noticeably more control and comfort.
    The primary goal of development was to make the new G-Class even more effective off-road. The G thus remains a true G – thanks to its standard ladder-type frame, the three 100-percent differential locks and LOW RANGE off-road ratio. Its suspension is the result of collaboration between Mercedes-Benz G GmbH and Mercedes-AMG GmbH. The result is an independent suspension with double-wishbone front axle in combination with a rigid rear axle. During development work, the engineers had the task of fighting for every millimetre, because off-road capability also means maximum ground clearance. The raised axle with independent suspension decisively contributes to this, and additionally increases the stiffness of the body with a strut brace.
    Agile off-road as well
    The components of the double-wishbone front axle are directly fixed to the ladder-type frame without a suspension subframe. The attachment points on the frame of the lower wishbone in a Z-direction are positioned as high up as possible. This arrangement ensures good driveability beyond the asphalt. Specifically for the G-Class, the new front axle is designed in such a robust way that the off-road performance and off-road capabilities of its predecessor are maintained and partly even surpassed. The new rigid rear axle is guided with four longitudinal control arms on each side and a Panhard rod. The off-road vehicle stays on track more robustly, and is agile and effortless in off-road applications.
    The exceptional handling characteristics and driving safety on account of the driver's high level of control can only be experienced first hand. The following figures, however, clearly show that every little detail to improve the off-road characteristics has been checked and optimised where possible.
    As before, high ground clearance and long suspension travel form the basis for the further improved off-road characteristics of the G-Class. The figures speak for themselves:
    Slope climbing ability of up to 100% on suitable surfaces Ground clearance between the axles, 241 millimetres, plus 6 millimetres maximum fording depth now 70 centimetres in water and mud passages, plus 10 centimetres Driving stability at angles of 35°, plus 7° Angle of departure: 30°, angle of approach: 31°, plus 1° Breakover angle: 26°, plus 1° Suspension travel: Front axle: Spring/rebound travel of 85/100 millimetres; rear axle: Spring/rebound travel of 82/142 millimetres The new "G-Mode" paves the way where there are none
    One of the prerequisites for the improved off-road handling characteristics is the new "G-Mode". The G-Class changes to "G-Mode" independently of the chosen drive program as soon as one of the three differential locks has been activated or LOW RANGE has been engaged. This off-road mode adapts the adjustable damping of the chassis and the steering as well as the accelerator characteristic, avoids unnecessary gearshifts and ensures maximum off-road capability. A small "G" icon discreetly lights up in the instrument cluster. The G simply swallows up major bumps, and even in extreme terrain the driver does not have to frantically hold on to the steering wheel to effortlessly manoeuvre.

    New automatic transmission on board
    For the power transmission, the 9G‑TRONIC automatic transmission with torque converter was specifically adapted to meet the needs of the off-road icon. The developers have managed to reduce the shift and response times of the 9-speed transmission by means of a dedicated software application. The wide transmission ratio not only makes driving quieter and more comfortable especially at low engine speeds, it also simultaneously contributes to reducing fuel consumption.
    The new transfer case is flange-mounted directly on to the 9G-TRONIC. It is adjusted in such a way that 40 percent of the drive torque reaches the front axle and 60 percent reaches the rear axle. The permanent all-wheel drive ensures maximum traction.
    The low-range ratio can be engaged via the LOW RANGE switch in transmission mode N at speeds of up to 40 km/h. The gear ratio of the transfer case is then changed from 1.00 in HIGH RANGE to 2.93. It is possible to switch from LOW RANGE to HIGH RANGE at speeds of up to 70 km/h. The gear ratio of the transfer case is 2.93 and thus significantly shorter than in the predecessor model (2.1), which becomes noticeable particularly when pulling away on an extreme gradient.
    All-round visibility from a bird's-eye view is possible thanks to the optional 360° camera, the reversing camera and three further cameras. This means that obstacles located below the window line or in front of the vehicle such as a hill crest do not remain hidden. The information is presented clearly in full HD in a choice of different views on the multimedia system's display. Dynamic guide lines show the road and the width of the G-Class. In addition, the off-road screen specially designed for the G-Class also displays data such as height, gradient, angle, compass, steering angle and activated differential locks.
    Furthermore, for particularly arduous applications, 18-inch all-terrain tyres are available.

    Drew Dowdell

    Same Sausage, Different Lengths

    Mercedes Benz will be doing the full reveal of the 2017 Mercedes Benz E-Class on Monday, January 11th, however images of the car slipped out ahead of time. The exterior design of the new E-Class won't shock anyone as it now looks like a larger C-Class or smaller S-Class. The current E-Class is one of the oldest sedans in Mercedes' line-up and this move brings it up to date with the rest of the family look.
     
    Primary motive power is expected to come from a 2.0 liter turbo 4-cylinder and a twin-turbo V6. Alternative fuel minded customer will again have a diesel option this time with an all new 2.0 liter diesel while a plug-in hybrid will also join the line. AMG models are expected to produce around 600 horsepower. The transmission will be a standard issue Mercedes 9-speed and the 4Matic all-wheel drive system should be available on most variants. Fuel economy is rumored to be increased by up to 20% on certain models due to improved aerodynamics and 150 lb weight loss.
     
    A new autonomous drive system called Drive Pilot (Not DriveMatic Mercedes? I need that German consistency! - DD) will be available that will maintain lane position and speeds up to 60 mph without lane markings, and 120 mph with them. The driver will need to touch a sensor on the steering wheel every 2 minutes or so to keep the system active.
     
    Inside, the E-Class will have a posh new interior, again straddling the space and design features of the C-Class and S-Class.
     
    The 2017 E-Class will be officially revealed at 9:35 am eastern time on January 11th 2016.
     
    We'll have more for you as we get closer to the live reveal. You can follow this and all of the 2016 Detroit Auto Show stories on our North American International Auto Show page
     


    Drew Dowdell

    The Acadia sheds 700lbs and almost 7 inches in length.

    At the North American International Auto Show in Detroit this morning, GMC took the wraps off the 2017 GMC Acadia.
     
    The new Acada is being re-positioned in GMC's lineup as more of a mid-size model. For 2017, the Acadia sheds 700 lbs, drops 7.2 inches in length, and 6.4 inches in wheelbase. While it has lost some of its bulk, it will still offer up to 7 passenger seating with 5 passenger and 6 passenger configurations available.
     
    The top of the line Denali trim returns with its unique trim and wheel, and additional features like HID headlamps and a new continuous control dampening control suspension system. Joining the lineup is an All-Terrain model that adds additional modes in the All-Wheel drive system for advanced hill climbing, body colored grille, and unique interior trim. The All-Terrain model will only be available in 5-passenger configuration.
     
    Powering the 2017 Acadia are the familiar 2.5 liter 4-cylinder and 3.6 liter V6. The 4-cylinder, a first for the Acadia, produces 194 hp and 190 lb-ft of torque at 4400 rpm and promises to return 28mpg highway in front-wheel drive models. For additional fuel savings in the city, the 4-cylinder features automatic Start-Stop. The 3.6 liter V6 is a newer version of the previous V6. It gains 29 horsepower and 5 lb-ft of torque over the previous version (less of a gain over previous Denali). The V6 does not have an estimated EPA fuel economy rating yet, however expect it to be slightly improved on over the old model's 17 city / 24 highway in FWD configuration. Both engines are coupled to the familiar 6-speed automatic transmission.
     
    The all-wheel drive system is new and is the same active dual-clutch system that has recently been introduced on the Cadillac XT5, Buick LaCrosse, and Buick Envision. The all-wheel drive system has a 2x4 mode that disconnects power to the rear wheels for additional fuel economy. Correction: The Active Dual-Clutch system is only on the All-Terrain model. Other models get a single clutch system.
     
    The 2017 GMC Acadia goes on sale this spring and will be produced in Spring Hill Tenn.
     

     
    You can follow all of our 2016 Detroit Auto Show coverage here.
     




    GMC Introduces All-New 2017 Acadia


    700-lb. lighter, more efficient crossover aimed at heart of midsize segment Expanded range of available active safety features, including Front Pedestrian Braking and Surround Vision Camera New powertrains include a 2.5L I-4, offering a GM-est. 28 mpg hwy, and an available est. 310-hp 3.6L V-6 Acadia Denali with new, exclusive Continuously Variable Ride Control New Acadia All Terrain with an advanced AWD system with Active Twin Clutch On sale this spring

     

    DETROIT – GMC today introduced the all-new 2017 Acadia – a reimagined crossover aimed at the heart of the midsize segment, designed to offer great versatility and refinement, with more advanced safety technologies.
     
    The new Acadia offers more-efficient powertrains, while continuing to offer three rows of seating on most models. The premium Acadia Denali returns, along with a new All Terrain model offering enhanced off-road capability.
     
    “GMC is a strong, growing premium brand and the Acadia is a cornerstone of our success story,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of GMC Sales and Marketing. “The all-new Acadia leverages GMC’s proven SUV experience to take on and shake up one of the largest vehicle segments, with a strong blend of design, technology and capability.”
     
    The new Acadia goes on sale this spring, almost a decade after its original introduction, and coming off of its strongest sales year ever in 2015 with 96,393 deliveries.
     
    “Typically, a vehicle’s sales can be illustrated on a bell curve during its lifecycle, but the Acadia’s success has defied convention with impressive sustainability,” said Aldred. “It’s a shining example of GMC’s momentum and we’re confident it will grow with the new Acadia.”
     
    New size, bigger advantages
    The strategic re-scoping of the 2017 Acadia offers customers a midsize crossover positioned between the compact Terrain and full-size Yukon. Depending on the model, it is available with five-, six- or seven-passenger seating, while offering greater maneuverability than the first-generation model.
     
    “The new Acadia captures a greater feeling of refinement, in everything from the responsive feeling behind the wheel to the way passengers interact with its intuitive features,” said Rick Spina, executive chief engineer for compact and crossover SUVs at General Motors. “It’s a vehicle that offers the functionality Acadia is known for, while delivering big advantages and balance to customers’ everyday lives.”
     
    The new Acadia is 700 pounds lighter than the current model, which pays dividends at the gas pump. A new, 2.5L engine is standard, offering an estimated 28 mpg on the highway for FWD models (EPA estimate not yet available; estimate is based on GM testing). City fuel economy offered is GM-estimated at 22 mpg (FWD) and is bolstered by GMC’s first application of Stop/Start technology, which enhances efficiency in stop-and-go driving.
     
    A new, available 3.6L V-6 engine is more powerful and efficient than the current model, while offering 4,000 pounds estimated trailering capability (with the available towing package). It is GM-estimated at 310 horsepower (231 kW) and 25 mpg highway (FWD models – EPA estimate not available).
     
    Both of the Acadia’s new engines feature direct injection and variable valve timing, and both are mated to six-speed automatic transmissions and an electronically controlled drive mode selector.
     
    Legacy of functionality and spaciousness
    The 2017 Acadia builds on a legacy of intuitive functionality, with new features such as a split-folding second-row seat that improves on the original Smart Slide feature of the current model. It offers greater flexibility, including the capability of the curbside seat sliding and tilting forward, even with a forward-facing child seat in place, while the driver-side section tips and slides forward for easier access to the third row.
     
    The 50/50-split third-row seat folds flat for a completely flat load floor behind the second row and when the second row is also folded, there’s 79 cubic feet (2,237 liters) of cargo room. Levers at the rear of the vehicle make it easier to fold the second- and third-row seats.
     
    Additional solutions range from simple to technologically advanced. The rear of the center console, for example, features a unique pull-out storage drawer. It is accessible to rear-seat passengers and allows items such as electronic devices and small toys to be stored out of sight, for greater security and reduced clutter.
     
    There’s also a new, standard rear seat alert that can remind the driver when an item may have been left in the second- and third-row seats. Additionally, all three rows offer USB charge ports for compatible electronic devices.
     
    Design evolution
    The new Acadia offers a greater emphasis on refinement, while remaining instantly recognizable with an evolution of the vehicle’s signature, professional grade design cues such as a chrome-trimmed grille, squared off and flared wheel arches and wraparound rear side windows with dark D-pillars.
     
    “It’s a confident design influenced by extensive customer input,” said Helen Emsley, executive director, Global GMC Design and User Experience. “The original Acadia was very truck-inspired, but the new model has a decidedly SUV influence conveyed in sculptural details, softened corners and a sleeker windshield angle.”
     
    New dimensional grilles and wraparound headlamps – HID lamps on Denali and halogen projectors on other models – reinforce the confident, refined appearance, while standard LED signature lighting on all models reflect GMC’s premium attributes. Complementing C-shape rear lighting graphics add a cohesive detail to the design.
     
    Premium cues distinguish the Acadia Denali. Like all Denali models, it features a dimensional chrome grille, along with integrated chrome side trim, chrome-accented door handles, a chrome lower-rear fascia and specific six-spoke wheels.
     
    Inside, all Acadia trim levels feature unique interior color and trim combinations and incorporate authentic aluminum trim.
     
    Latest safety and connectivity technologies
    As a contemporary crossover designed for families on the go, the 2017 Acadia offers the latest active safety features to protect them, as well as the latest technologies to keep them connected.
     
    The active safety features are designed to help make drivers more aware of their surroundings and potential crash situations. They are available depending on the model and include:
    New Front Pedestrian Braking New Low Speed Forward Automatic Braking (standard on SLT-2 and Denali) New Forward Automatic Braking (available on Denali) New Following Distance Indicator New IntelliBeam automatic headlamp high-beam control New Surround Vision camera system New Safety Alert Seat Forward Collision Alert Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning Lane Change Alert with Side Blind Zone Alert Front and Rear Parking Assist.

     

    An available Tow Vision Trailering system helps make hitching easier by employing a rear-vision camera, with dynamic guidelines, to help line up the Acadia’s hitch with the trailer, as well as offering views of the trailer while driving.
     
    And when it comes to connectivity, the Acadia is plugged in with available phone integration technology through GMC’s available IntelliLink system. It offers support for Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, making it easy to connect to some of the features smartphone users rely on most. (Vehicle user interfaces are products of Apple and Google and require a compatible smartphone and adherence to data plan rates, terms and privacy statements.)
     
    Additionally, an available OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot provides a mobile hub for drivers and passengers to stay connected. The hotspot is on whenever the vehicle is on and comes with a three-month/three-gigabyte data trial.
     
    New foundation and driving dynamics
    Built on a new, lighter body structure, the 2017 Acadia’s driving dynamics are more responsive, while its shorter length and narrower width enable greater maneuverability, for easier turning in parking decks and easier parking in home garages.
     


    Wheelbase (in / mm)


     
     

    Length


     
     

    (in / mm)


     
     

    Width


     
     

    (in / mm)


     
     

    Height


     
     

    (in / mm)


     
     

    Turning radius


     
     

    (ft / M)


     
     

    Curb weight


     
     

    (lb / kg)


     
     

    2017 Acadia


     
     

    112.5 / 2857


     
     

    193.6 / 4917


     
     

    75.4 / 1916


     
     

    68.7 / 1745 (w/o mast, w/ roof rack)


     
     

    38.7 / 11.8


     
     

    3956 / 1794 (est. - FWD)


     
     

    2016 Acadia


     
     

    118.9 / 3021


     
     

    200.8 / 5101


     
     

    78.9 / 2003


     
     

    72.6 / 1844 (w/o mast, w/ roof rack)


     
     

    40.4 / 12.3


     
     

    4656 / 2112 (FWD)


     

    The body structure incorporates press-hardened, high-strength steels, which allowed thinner components in some areas offering comparable or better crash performance than conventional materials. They also help reduce the base curb weight by 700 pounds (318 kg), compared to the current model.
     
    New splayed front frame rails also contribute to crashworthiness. They flare outward to provide effective folding and crushing performance during small overlap frontal crash situations.
     
    The new Acadia retains a front-drive layout with available all-wheel drive. All models feature a new drive mode selector, which allows the driver to alter chassis and powertrain attributes to suit a variety of driving conditions. Front-drive models offer Normal (2x4), Snow, Sport and Trailer/Tow modes, while AWD models offer 2x4 (AWD disconnect), 4x4, Sport, Off Road and Trailer/Tow modes.
     
    The AWD disconnect mode effectively disconnects the rear axle from the drive system to save fuel. On-demand AWD capability can be reapplied on the go by switching the drive mode selector to 4x4 mode.
     
    Additional chassis and driving dynamics features include:
    MacPherson strut front suspension Five-link rear suspension Rack-mounted electric power steering system Four-wheel disc brakes with Duralife rotors Electronic park brake Available electronically controlled continuous damping system.

     

    All Terrain
    The new All Terrain model matches distinctive design elements with enhanced off-road-driving ability.
     
    At the heart of the Acadia All Terrain’s capability is an advanced AWD system with Active Twin Clutch, which optimizes traction for every condition it encounters. And while it is engineered for optimal performance in wet, snowy and icy conditions, it also provides enhanced stability in dry conditions.
     
    It also has a specific All Terrain mode in place of the Off Road mode on the drive mode selector, which works with the model’s exclusive AWD system to offer enhanced hill-climb capability.
     
    All Terrain models are distinguished from the rest of the Acadia lineup with a body-color grille surround, black chrome trim and unique wheels. Inside is exclusive five-passenger seating, dynamic All Terrain interior accents and covered storage bins in the rear cargo floor in place of a third-row seat.
     
    Manufacturing
    The 2017 GMC Acadia will be produced at General Motors’ Spring Hill (Tenn.) assembly facility, with globally sourced parts.
     
    CONTACT:
    Megan Soule
    GMC Communications
    313-495-1297
    megan.soule@gm.com
     
    2017 GMC ACADIA PRELIMINARY SPECIFICATIONS
     
    Overview
    Models:
    GMC Acadia / Acadia Denali / Acadia All Terrain
    Body style / driveline:
    crossover SUV / front-engine; front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive
    Construction:
    body-frame integral
    EPA vehicle class:
    sport utility vehicle
    Manufacturing location:
    Spring Hill, Tenn.
    Key competitors:
    Honda Pilot, Toyota Highlander, Ford Explorer; Jeep Grand Cherokee
     
    Powertrains
    Engine:
    Ecotec 2.5L DOHC I-4 (LCV)
    3.6L V-6 VVT DI (LGX)
    Displacement (cu in / cc):
    150 / 2457
    223 / 3649
    Bore & stroke (in / mm):
    3.46 x 3.97 / 88 x 101
    3.74 x 3.37 / 95 x 85.8
    Block material:
    precision sand-cast aluminum w/ cast-in-place iron bore liners
    cast aluminum w/ cast-in-place iron bore liners
    Cylinder head material:
    cast aluminum
    cast aluminum
    Valvetrain:
    DOHC, four valves per cylinder, continuous VVT
    DOHC, four valves per cylinder, continuous VVT, Active Fuel Management
    Fuel delivery:
    high-pressure direct injection and electronic throttle control
    high-pressure direct injection and electronic throttle control
    Horsepower
    (hp / kW @ rpm):
    194 / 145 @ 6300 (SAE certified)
    310 / 231 @ 6600 (est.)
    Torque
    (lb.-ft. / Nm @ rpm):
    190 / 258 @ 4400 (SAE certified)
    271 / 367 @ 5000 (est.)
    GM-estimated fuel economy (city / hwy):
    22 / 28 (FWD)
    17 / 25 (FWD)
    Transmission:
    Hydra-Matic 6T50 six-speed automatic
    Hydra-Matic 6T70 six-speed automatic
     
    Chassis / Suspension
    Suspension (front):
    MacPherson strut; continuous damping control (Denali)
    Suspension (rear):
    Five-link independent; continuous damping control (Denali)
    Steering type:
    electric variable-effort power steering with Active Return Assist
    Turning circle (ft / m):
    38.7 / 11.8
    Brakes:
    four-wheel-disc, variable brake system with power assist; Duralife brake rotors and low-drag brake calipers
    Wheel size and type:
     
    18-in. aluminum
    20-in. aluminum
    Tires:
    P235/65R18all-season
    P235/55R20 all-season
     
    Dimensions
    Exterior
    Wheelbase (in / mm):
    112.5 / 2857
    Overall length (in / mm):
    193.6 / 4917
    Overall width (in / mm):
    75.4 / 1916
    Overall height (in / mm):
    68.7 / 1745 (w/o mast, w/ roof rack)
    Track (in / mm):
    64.5 / 1638 (front)
    64.5 / 1638 (rear)
    Curb weight (lb / kg):
    3956 / 1794
     
    Interior
    Seating capacity:
    five, six or seven passengers (depending on model/configuration)
    Headroom (in / mm):
    front: 40 / 1016 (without sunroof)
    2nd row: 39.6 / 1006 (without sunroof)
    3rd row: 37.2 / 945
    Legroom (in / mm):
    front: 41 / 1042
    2nd row: 39.7 / 1008
    3rd row: 31.1 / 789
    Shoulder room (in / mm):
    front: 59.4 / 1508
    2nd row: 58.7 / 1490
    3rd row: 54.3 / 1378
    Hip room (in / mm):
    front: 55.7 / 1414
    2nd row: 53.3 / 1355
    3rd row: 42.9 / 1090
    Cargo volume (cu. ft. / L):
    12.8 / 362 (behind third row)
    41.7 /1181 (behind second row, third row folded)
    79 / 2237 (second and third rows folded)
     
    Note: Information shown is current at time of publication. Please visit http://media.gmc.com for updates.

    William Maley

    Unlike the last special edition, this one actually has more power

    Subaru has been keeping their S-series of WRX STI vehicles in Japan since the first model (the S201) was launched in 2000. But today at the Detroit Auto Show, Subaru has decided to treat us by bringing over the S209 to the U.S.
    Under the hood, STI has overhauled the EJ25 2.5L turbocharged boxer-four engine with an HKS turbocharger, revised intake system, forged pistons and con rods, and less-restrictive exhaust. Output has increased 310 to 341 horsepower. Torque remains at 290 pound-feet. In a nod to the 2004 to 2007 STI, Subaru has fitted an intercooler water spray system controlled via steering wheel paddles to cool down the intercooler. A six-speed manual routes power to all four wheels.
    For the chassis, Subaru has widen the track by 0.6-inches, upgraded the Bilstein dampers and bushings; added 0.8-inch rear anti-roll bar, fitted a handful of stiffening braces and bars, and a set of 265/35 Dunlop GT600A summer tires wearing 19-inch BBS wheels. Subaru claims this gives the S209 more than 1.00 g of lateral grip.
    The exterior is much more aggressive with wider fenders to allow for additional cooling, rear-fender vents to reduce drag, under spoilers all around the vehicle, and a large rear wing.
    No mention on price, but we're expecting it to be near or above the $48,995 for the last special edition WRX STI to grace our shores - the Type RA. There will only 200 models built for the U.S., either wearing WR Blue Pearl with gray wheels or Crystal White Pearl with gold wheels.
    Gallery: 2019 Subaru WRX STi S209
    Source: Subaru


    Subaru Tecnica International Unleashes Most Powerful Model Ever With Limited-Edition STI S209
    Debuts at 2019 North American International Auto Show First-ever STI-crafted S-line performance vehicle sold in the United States Limited production run of around 200 units Available exclusively in the U.S. 341-horsepower (est.) 2.5-liter SUBARU BOXER engine Aggressive new look with wide fenders, front canards and rear wing Performance-focused chassis with flexible strut tower bar and draw stiffeners Exclusive 19 x 9-inch forged BBS® wheels with bespoke Dunlop® SP Sport Maxx® GT600A tires Brembo® brakes with new high-friction pads Available in two exterior colors: World Rally Blue Pearl and Crystal White Pearl January 14, 2019 , Camden, N.J. - Subaru Tecnica International (STI), a wholly owned subsidiary of Subaru Corporation, today introduced the limited-edition STI S209, the first-ever S-line STI product produced exclusively for the U.S. market. As an S-line product, the STI S209 encompasses upgrades in power, handling, aerodynamics and driver engagement, and undergoes final assembly in Kiryu, Japan, where it receives engine modifications and bodywork alterations that in total require it to be homologated for the U.S. by STI; thus, the S209 is considered the first “STI-built” Subaru sold in the U.S. The S209 carries on a high-performance tradition that dates to STI-built models that were exclusive to the Japanese domestic market – the 2000 S201 through the 2018 S208.
    Designed with a focus on high-performance driving, the S209 draws inspiration and tech transfer from STI’s most formidable track machine: the WRX STI Nürburgring Challenge racecar, which won the SP3T class at the 2018 24 Hours of Nürburgring, marking the fifth time STI dominated the SP3T class at the grueling endurance race. The S209, like the Nürburgring Challenge racecar, wears an expanded wide-body exterior treatment, which extends the vehicle’s overall width to 72.4 inches, or 1.7 inches wider than a standard WRX STI. The bulging fenders accommodate wider front/rear tracks (+ 0.6 in front/rear) and 265/35 Dunlop® SP Sport Maxx® GT600A summer-only tires wrapped around lightweight 19 x 9-inch forged BBS alloy wheels. The all-new tires, developed exclusively for the S209 by Dunlop, are a significant contributor to the car’s tenacious maximum lateral grip of over 1.0 g. Vents on the front fenders provide additional engine cooling, while vents on the rear fenders rectify air turbulence to reduce drag. Brembo brakes, with cross-drilled steel rotors and 6-piston monoblock front calipers and 2-piston monoblock rear calipers, provide stout stopping force, thanks in part to upgraded high-friction pads that deliver improved fade-resistance.
    Underneath the S209’s broader body are specially developed Bilstein® dampers, stiffened coil springs, a 20mm rear stabilizer bar and pillow-type bushings for the front/rear lateral links. The S209 incorporates reinforcements to the front crossmember and rear subframes and, a la the Nürburgring racecar, a flexible front-strut tower bar and flexible front/rear draw stiffeners. The flexible tower bar, unlike a conventional rigid bar, is split and joined with a pillow ball joint in the center to be longitudinally mobile while helping laterally stiffen the body of the car. The result is optimum tire grip during lateral moments combined with compliant ride during longitudinal moments. Meanwhile, the draw stiffeners apply tension between the body and cross member to optimize chassis flex, improving stability when cornering and delivering better ride, handling and steering response. Other Nürburgring racecar tech that trickles down to the S209: front, rear and side under spoilers; front bumper canards; and carbon-fiber roof panel and rear wing.
    A thoroughly reworked version of the legendary EJ25 2.5-liter turbocharged BOXER engine propels the S209. Featuring an STI turbocharger manufactured by HKS®, the EJ25 serves up an estimated 341 horsepower, thanks in part to a larger turbine and compressor (up 6 and 8 percent, respectively, compared to WRX STI) as well as maximum boost pressure that has been increased to 18.0 psi (16.2 psi for WRX STI). Proudly displaying an S209 serial number plate, the enhanced BOXER engine utilizes forged pistons and connecting rods that are both lighter and stronger. Midrange torque, too, gets a notable bump, up 10 percent at 3,600 rpm, delivering higher corner exit speeds when driving on track.
    For ultimate driver engagement, the S209 comes exclusively with a close-ratio 6-speed manual transmission that routes power to a full-time Subaru Symmetrical All-Wheel Drive system with front/rear limited-slip differentials, a Driver Controlled Center Differential (DCCD), Active Torque Vectoring and Multi-Mode Vehicle Dynamics Control. A recalibrated SI-Drive system offers three modes: Intelligent (I) for improved fuel economy and smoother power control; Sport (S) for optimized power balance between response and control; and Sport Sharp (S#) for achieving the best acceleration times. STI engineers recommend Sport over Sport Sharp for circuit driving, as the less aggressive throttle map allows for greater driver control.
    To feed more air to the EJ25, the S209 uses a high-flow intake system featuring a new intake duct, induction box with conical air filter, silicone turbo inlet duct and, a nod from the 2004-07 WRX STI, an intercooler water spray system that lowers intercooler temperature via manually operated steering-wheel paddles. More air demands more fuel, so the S209 receives a new high-flow fuel pump, larger fuel injectors and an STI-tuned engine control module. High-performance mufflers deliver 17-percent less airflow resistance while larger hand-polished stainless-steel exhaust tips – 101mm in diameter – deliver aggressive appearance and acoustics.
    The S209 receives multiple tweaks to elevate it from other STI sedans. An STI badge replaces the traditional Subaru star cluster on the center of the D-shape steering wheel, which is wrapped in Ultrasuede® with silver stitching, a treatment that carries over to the lid of the center console storage box. An S209 serial number badge resides on the center console, and S209 badges adorn the passenger-side dash and the headrests of the Recaro® front bucket seats, which feature new silver-hued inserts. Outside, special S209 badges are affixed to the front grille and fenders as well as the rear decklid.
    Only around 200 units of the STI S209 will be built, earmarked exclusively for the U.S. Available exterior color/BBS wheel combinations will be WR Blue Pearl/gray wheels and Crystal White Pearl/gold wheels. Pricing will be announced closer to the on-sale date in late 2019.

    William Maley

    The father of the minivan learns some new tricks

    Goodbye Town & Country, Hello Pacifica? No Chrysler isn't bringing back their crossover from the mid-oughts. That is the name of their new minivan which made its debut this morning at the Detroit Auto Show.
     
    In terms of design, the Pacifica is inspired by the 700C concept with a 200-esque front end and sloped windshield. Chrysler lowered the beltline and mounted the rear-view mirrors below it to increase the feeling of space. Wheel size goes up to 20-inches. The Pacifica is similar in size to the Town & Country - a tenth of an inch smaller in length, half an inch bigger in height, and an inch bigger in width.
     
    The interior borrows a lot from newer Chrysler models with flowing curves, different color and material choices, and the latest version of Chrysler's UConnect system. Rear seat passengers will get the option of UConnect theater which includes a pair of 10-inch touchscreens. No matter where you sit in the Pacifica, you'll definitely feel there is a lot of space thanks to 200 cubic feet of passenger space.
     
    For power, the Pacifica will come with a 3.6L Pentastar V6 with 287 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. This will be paired with a nine-speed automatic. There will also be a plug-in hybrid version which gets a detuned version of the 3.6 (248 horsepower and 230 pound-feet of torque) paired with an electric motor and 24-kWh battery. Chrysler says the Pacifica plug-in can travel up to 30 Miles on a full charge and take about two hours to charge when plugged into a 240V outlet.
     
    Compared to the outgoing Town & Country, the 2017 Pacifica is much lighter thanks to a new platform and the use of lighter materials such as all-aluminum sliding doors.
     
    No word on pricing for the 2017 Pacifica lineup, but we would expect the base LX to be within the $30,000 to $35,000 ballpark. The 2017 Pacifica arrives at dealers this spring, with the plug-in hybrid following in the fall.
     
    Source: Chrysler
     


     
    You can follow all of our reports from the 2016 Detroit Auto Show here.
     
    Press Release is on Page 2


    All-new 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Reinvents Minivan Segment With Unprecedented Level of Functionality, Versatility and Technology
    2017 Chrysler Pacifica and Pacifica Hybrid revolutionize the minivan segment with nearly 40 new minivan firsts After creating the minivan segment more than 30 years ago, FCA US now boasts an unmatched 115 minivan innovations Re-engineered from the ground up on an all-new platform for class-leading ride, handling, and noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) Delivers class-leading gasoline and hybrid powertrains to the minivan segment, with the Pacifica Hybrid offering up to 80 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) in city driving 2017 Chrysler Pacifica brings sculptural styling, beautiful surfacing and highly crafted execution to the minivan segment Offers more than 100 standard and available safety and security features, including 360-degree Surround View camera, ParkSense Parallel/Perpendicular Park Assist, Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop and Hold and Forward Collision Warning-Plus The most technologically equipped of its kind with available all-new Uconnect Theater rear seat entertainment, 8.4-inch touchscreen display and premium audio systems Full array of comfort and convenience technologies available, including Stow 'n Vac integrated vacuum, tri-pane panoramic sunroof, handsfree sliding doors and liftgate and redesigned Stow 'n Go seating with Stow 'n Go Assist and Easy Tilt access to the third row

    Auburn Hills, Mich., Jan 11, 2016 - Delivering unparalleled levels of functionality, versatility, technology and bold styling, the all-new 2017 Chrysler Pacifica redefines the minivan segment.
     

    As the original creator of the minivan more than 30 years ago, FCA US LLC has transformed the segment with firsts – notching 78 innovations through the first five minivan generations. With the introduction of the all-new Chrysler Pacifica, FCA US adds 37 minivan firsts to its portfolio for an unprecedented total of 115 innovations in the segment.
     
    "The all-new 2017 Chrysler Pacifica is truly a no-compromises minivan, giving customers everything they need or want," said Timothy Kuniskis, Head of Passenger Car Brands, FCA - North America. "We started from the ground up to design the most technologically advanced minivan, which offers bold styling, class-leading ride and handling, and unmatched fuel economy, with the Pacifica Hybrid delivering up to 80 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) in city driving. The all-new Chrysler Pacifica was thoughtfully designed and engineered to provide unsurpassed levels of comfort, convenience, technology and functionality, making it the perfect combination for modern families."
     
    Engineering
     
    The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica was re-engineered from the ground up on an all-new platform, delivering class-leading ride and handling and reduced noise, vibration and harshness (NVH). Its body structure is the lightest and stiffest in its class, making it more responsive with lower levels of body roll and enhanced agility to absorb and distribute road inputs. Class-leading aerodynamics contribute to the Pacifica's unsurpassed fuel efficiency.
     
    The all-new Pacifica is engineered and executed to deliver a "vault-like" interior environment with low levels of wind noise, road noise and related vibration/harshness characteristics. Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) is standard on all models to further heighten the Chrysler Pacifica's refinement factor during a comfortable daily commute or an extended road trip with family and friends.
     
    The Chrysler Pacifica boasts the largest interior volume in the segment, with clever storage, available eight-passenger seating, and – a requirement with all generations of FCA US minivans – the ability to fit an 8 x 4-foot sheet of plywood.
     
    Powertrain
     
    The all-new 2017 Chrysler Pacifica minivan features a choice of two powerful, efficient and advanced powertrains – the segment's first hybrid vehicle, and the next generation of the award-winning Pentastar V-6 gasoline engine, which is mated to a segment-exclusive TorqueFlite nine-speed automatic transmission.
     
    The Pacifica Hybrid, the industry's first electrified minivan, will deliver an estimated range of 30 miles solely on zero-emissions electric power from a 16-kWh lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery. In city driving, it is expected to achieve an efficiency rating of 80 MPGe based on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency standards.
     
    The pivotal technology behind the all-new Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid is its innovative electrically variable transmission (EVT). Patented by FCA US, the device features two electric motors, which are both capable of driving the vehicle's wheels.
     
    On the Chrysler Pacifica gasoline models, the latest iteration of the award-winning 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine produces best-in-class horsepower (287) and torque (262 lb.-ft.), along with unsurpassed fuel economy. Enhancements such as two-step variable-valve lift (VVL), cooled exhaust-gas recirculation (EGR) and innovative weight-reduction strategies boost the engine's efficiency and performance, all while preserving the smoothness that remains a hallmark of the Pentastar brand. For added fuel efficiency, engine stop-start (ESS) technology is a standard feature on the 2017 Chrysler Pacifica (late availability).
     
    Design
     
    Featuring the face of the Chrysler brand, the all-new Chrysler Pacifica has a sculpted exterior with athletic proportions. A fast silhouette and sophisticated, fluid-like surfacing deliver a level of style not found in the minivan segment. The Pacifica's sliding door track lines are hidden under the rear-quarter side glass, making them virtually indistinguishable. With its long wheelbase, wide track, low ground clearance and available 20-inch wheels, the Chrysler Pacifica appears planted, with a capable stance.
     
    The Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid features a unique front grille pattern and wheel design, as well as distinctive badging, differentiating it from the rest of the Pacifica lineup.
     
    The thoughtfully designed and beautifully crafted interior mixes high-tech elements with a sculpted, muscular feel. With horizontally drawn features, the interior's spaciousness is amplified, and the linear elements keep the eye moving throughout the cabin. The available tri-pane panoramic sunroof, with a dual-pane panoramic sunroof and a fixed glass pane over the third row, adds to the feeling of spaciousness.
     
    The Chrysler Pacifica and Pacifica Hybrid are available in 10 exterior paint colors that accentuate the vehicle's surfacing: Billet Silver Metallic Clear Coat, Brilliant Black Crystal Pearl Coat, Bright White Clear Coat, Molten Silver Metallic Clear Coat, Velvet Red Pearl Coat, Jazz Blue Pearl Coat, Dark Cordovan Pearl Coat, Tusk White Pearl Coat, Granite Crystal Metallic Clear Coat and Silver Teal Pearl Coat (available only on the Pacifica Hybrid and paired with an exclusive interior environment).
     
    Safety and Security
     
    The all-new 2017 Chrysler Pacifica showcases the latest in advanced safety and security technology, offering more than 100 standard and available features. Available for the first time on the all-new Pacifica is the Surround View camera, which uses four cameras positioned around the vehicle to provide 360-degree views, including a bird's eye perspective of the vehicle and its surroundings. Other advanced features include:
    ParkSense Parallel/Perpendicular Park Assist, which uses ultrasonic sensors to guide the driver into parking spaces Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop and Hold, which maintains the distance between the vehicle and the one in front of it, and can bring the vehicle to a controlled stop under certain circumstances Forward Collision Warning-Plus deploys the brakes to alert the driver if an impact appears imminent, and assists with driver response LaneSense Lane Departure Warning-Plus leverages electronic power steering (EPS) by delivering a torque input to alert and assist the driver with corrective action

    Other standard and available features include Blind-spot Monitoring, ParkSense rear park assist with stop, ParkView rear backup camera, electronic stability control and electric park brake. As part of FCA US's ongoing efforts to proliferate advanced safety and technology, the Pacifica's all-new body structure features the use of additional high-strength steel.
     

    The Chrysler Pacifica also boasts up to five seating positions that will accommodate LATCH child safety-seat installation – a capacity unsurpassed in the segment.
     
    Technology and Convenience
     
    The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica is the most technologically equipped vehicle of its kind, offering an all-new Uconnect Theater entertainment system, 7-inch full-color driver information display, 8.4-inch touchscreen, acclaimed Uconnect Access and an array of other features.
     
    With the all-new, class-exclusive Uconnect Theater rear seat entertainment system, passengers can watch movies, play built-in games, connect personal devices to surf the Internet and stream content throughout the vehicle via two high-definition 10-inch touchscreens.
     
    The available KeySense programmable key fob places limits on speed and audio volume, mutes the audio when front seatbelts are not buckled, prevents the disabling of certain features like Forward Collision Warning-Plus and ParkSense rear park assist, and allows blocking of SiriusXM Radio channels.
     
    The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica features the available easy-to-use Uconnect 8.4 system with an 8.4-inch touchscreen, navigation, integrated voice command, and Uconnect Access, which keeps drivers and passengers connected with helpful information, such as fuel prices and movie listings
     
    For audiophile-quality sound, the Chrysler Pacifica comes standard with six speakers and Active Noise Cancellation. Premium audio systems, either a 13-speaker Alpine system or a 20-speaker Harman Kardon system, are also available.
     
    The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica is loaded with comfort and convenience features, including Keyless Enter 'n Go, remote start, and heated and ventilated seats. Other notable features include segment-first handsfree sliding doors and liftgate, which are operated by making a kicking motion under the sliding door or bumper to open or close the sliding doors or liftgate.
     
    For added convenience, the available Stow 'n Vac integrated vacuum powered by RIDGID provides easy access to all corners of the vehicle. The Stow 'n Go seating and storage system, a hallmark of FCA US minivans for more than 10 years, has been redesigned for added ease of use, and the addition of the all-new Stow 'n Go Assist feature helps to further simplify the process. With the press of a button on the B-pillar, the front seat moves forward to allow the second-row seat to be stowed into the floor tub. Once the seat is stowed, pressing the button again moves the front seat back to its starting position. In addition, the Easy Tilt second-row seats allow for easy access to the third row, even with an empty child seat installed in the second row.
     
    The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica is available in six models and the Pacifica Hybrid in two models. The Chrysler Pacifica will be available in dealer showrooms in spring 2016, with the Pacifica Hybrid arriving in the second half of 2016.
     
    The 2017 Chrysler Pacifica is built at the Windsor Assembly Plant in Windsor, Ontario, Canada.
     
    First hybrid powertrain in minivan segment
     
    "Due to its large footprint and multiple daily trip patterns, the minivan is ideally suited for electrification technology," said Bob Lee, Vice President and Head of Engine, Powertrain and Electrified Propulsion Systems Engineering, FCA – North America. "The all-new 2017 Chrysler Pacifica lives up to this promise and then some, with efficiency, power and refinement."
     
    Launching in second half of 2016, the Pacifica Hybrid is the industry's first electrified minivan. With an estimated 248 horsepower, the vehicle will deliver an estimated range of 30 miles solely on zero-emissions electric power from a 16-kWh lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery.
     
    In city driving, it is expected to achieve an efficiency rating of 80 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe), based on U.S. Environmental Protection Agency standards.
     
    When the battery's energy is depleted to a certain threshold, the Pacifica Hybrid becomes a part-time electric vehicle, like a conventional hybrid. Power to the wheels is supplied by the electric drive system or supplemented by a specially adapted new version of the award-winning FCA US Pentastar 3.6-liter V-6 engine.
     
    The battery pack – neatly packaged under the second row floor in the new unique battery case – may be fully recharged in as little as two hours using a 240-volt plug-in system.
     
    The pivotal technology behind the all-new Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid is its innovative electrically variable transmission (EVT). Designed and patented by FCA US, the device features two electric motors – both of which are capable of driving the vehicle's wheels.
     
    Conventional electrification schemes dedicate one motor to serve as a generator and a second motor – usually much larger – to deliver torque to the wheels. But the all-new 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid uses a one-way clutch that allows the motor typically used only as a generator to deliver torque to the wheels, depending on driving conditions. The result is increased efficiency, refinement and improved component packaging.
     
    Unique hybrid engine
     
    Based on the newly upgraded Pentastar engine architecture, the new hybrid engine features an Atkinson cycle combustion system for improved pumping efficiency without compromising vehicle performance due to its hybrid electric motors working in tandem with the engine when full load performance is required.
     
    Unique "handed" pistons provide a compression ratio increase to 12.5:1 for further thermodynamic efficiency improvement.
     
    The front cover and front accessory drive system was re-engineered due to the elimination of the alternator and power steering pump which is common to most hybrid engines.
     
    Friction reduction improvements, along with ignition and fuel injection improvements found on the upgraded Pentastar V-6 are all part of the specially adapted hybrid Pentastar engine, while 2-step valve lift and cooled EGR have been removed with the addition of Atkinson cycle combustion system.
     
    Recharging
     
    Deceleration triggers the motor to turn into a generator, which creates electricity to send back to the battery pack.
     
    The 16-kWh lithium-ion battery pack in the 2017 Chrysler Pacifica is stored efficiently under the second-row floor, keeping the rear cargo area as roomy as ever and preserving the third-row Stow 'n Go seating and storage.
     
    The exterior charge port is located on the driver's side fender for quick and easy plug in after exiting the vehicle. On the inside, a charging indicator light is located on the instrument panel so owners can easily monitor the battery charge process.

    William Maley

    Eight different models, six different powertrain combinations including a diesel

    2018 is a special year for Chevrolet as it marks 100 years of building pickup trucks. What better way to commemorate this anniversary than to introduce the next-generation Silverado. Chevrolet has already revealed one version of the Silverado last month at an event in Texas, the Trail Boss. The bowtie also revealed the new Silverado would be using a mix of materials such as steel and aluminum.
    Tonight at an event in Detroit, Chevrolet has spilled more details on the 2019 Silverado. Despite the truck growing in overall length (1.6 inches) and wheelbase (3.9 inches), Chevrolet says the new Silverado has a weight reduction of up to 450 pounds. Some of this comes down to aluminum being used for the doors, hood, and tailgate.
    Chevrolet is making a big about the Silverado's bed. The bed floor is about seven inches wider which allows for the Silverado to boast more cargo volume than the competition. For example, the short-box will offer 63 cubic feet of volume - up to 20 percent more than what Ford or Ram offers. Other traits that Chevrolet is boasting about include 21 tie-downs (12 fixed and 9 moveable), 120-Volt outlet, and a power tailgate that can be operated from the keyfob.
    The interior looks to be an evolution of what is found in the current Silverado. There is a revised center stack layout with what appears to be an updated version of Chevrolet MyLink. Chevrolet has stretched out the cab to provide more interior space. This is quite noticeable in the crew cab where the back seats have three inches of additional legroom. There is also more storage with bins integrated into the seatbacks of the back seat, and a large 24-liter storage tray under the back seat.
    For power, Chevrolet will be offering updated versions of the 5.3L and 6.2L V8s with a new cylinder deactivation system that can actively turn off any number of cylinders to boost fuel economy. Yes, that means the Silverado's V8 could just be running on one cylinder technically. A new 3.0L Duramax turbodiesel inline-six will be available. Chevrolet is keeping quiet on power figures for the three engines and it is unclear if a gas V6 will be on offer as well. The turbodiesel and 6.2L V8 will come paired with a new 10-speed automatic that was jointly developed by GM and Ford. We're guessing the 5.3L will have an eight-speed automatic. 
    When the 2019 Silverado hits dealers this fall, it will be offered in eight different trims, ranging from the base Work Truck to the luxurious High Country. New for 2019 is the introduction of the RST that adds body-colored trim, full LED lighting, and up to 22-inch wheels.
    Source: Chevrolet
    Press Release is on Page 2


    INTRODUCING THE ALL-NEW 2019 CHEVROLET SILVERADO
    Most functional bed of any full-size truck, including class-leading cargo volume Up to 450 pounds lighter from mixed materials use for improved performance Six engine/transmission choices, including an all-new Duramax 3.0L inline-six diesel Eight models, each with distinct personalities for different truck customers DETROIT — Chevrolet introduced the next-generation Silverado today, exactly 100 years after the brand delivered its first trucks to customers in January 1918. The all-new Silverado sets the course for the next century of Chevy Trucks with the most functional bed of any full-size truck, weighs up to 450 pounds less for increased performance and offers a broad range of trims and engine/transmission combinations to help each customer find their ideal truck.
    “With the all-new Silverado, we've taken the best truck on the road and made it even better,” said Mark Reuss, General Motors executive vice president of Global Product Development, Purchasing and Supply Chain. “It has a longer wheelbase, more passenger and cargo volume, and yet, thanks to our mixed materials strategy and mass reduction expertise, the new truck is 450 pounds lighter than the current model."
    Larger, more functional and more capable bed
    “Truck customers value capability and functionality above all else,” said Tim Herrick, executive chief engineer of Full-Size Trucks. “Every truck — including the luxurious High Country — is a work truck with a job to do. As such, we set out to create the best tool for the job at hand, one that makes work more productive and more enjoyable, no matter what they call ‘work.’’’
    The bed is the defining trait of every pickup, and bed construction has long been a strength of Chevy Trucks. To improve upon that strength, the 2019 Silverado 1500 bed features:
    Best-in-class cargo volume: The 2019 Silverado offers the most cargo volume in every bed length, with the short-box offering 63 cubic feet of volume — up to 20 percent more than a competitor’s short-box. Most of that volume was created by widening the maximum width of the bed floor nearly seven inches. Chevrolet Accessories will offer storage bins that fit over the wheel wells, offering nearly seven cubic feet of lockable cargo space for short-box models, while easily accommodating a 4 x 8 sheet of plywood flat on the cargo floor. Higher-strength steel floor: As before, the Silverado has a roll-formed, high-strength steel bed floor. For 2019 a higher-grade steel is used, with yield strength increased from 340 to 500 megapascals of pressure for optimal strength and mass. More and stronger tie-downs: Silverado now has 12 fixed tie-downs, and their strength has doubled to 500 pounds of force before bending. Silverado also has nine moveable tie points for even more cargo flexibility. More features: Silverado will be available with a class-exclusive power up/down tailgate that can be operated from the key fob, interior button or by hand. Other changes include available task lighting, a 120-volt power outlet and larger cutouts in the class-exclusive CornerStep bumpers to better accommodate steel-toed boots. With class-leading cargo volume and class-exclusive features, the new Silverado offers the most functional bed of any full-size truck, and more convenient hauling for cargo of virtually any size or shape.
    Larger, lighter and more agile
    The 2019 Silverado is larger than before, including a wheelbase that is up to 3.9 inches (100 mm) longer and an overall length that is 1.6 inches (41 mm) longer, enabling both more cargo volume and more interior room for all cab lengths. Remarkably, it’s also lighter, weighing 450 pounds (204 kg) less than today’s truck when comparing crew cab V-8 models.
    The weight savings comes from extensive use of mixed materials and advanced manufacturing processes throughout the next-gen truck. This allowed Chevrolet to use the right material for the application and optimize every component for mass, durability, safety and functionality to meet our customers’ needs.
    For example, the body is 88 pounds (40 kg) lighter than before due to mixed materials use. All exterior swing panels (doors, hood and tailgate) are made of aluminum while fixed panels (fenders, roof and bed) are made of steel. The underlying safety cage uses seven different grades of steel, each tailored for the specific application.
    The fully boxed steel frame is also 88 pounds (40 kg) lighter than its predecessor, while offering 10 percent greater torsional rigidity. Eighty percent of the frame is made of high-strength steel varying from 2 to 5 millimeters in thickness, and every millimeter is optimized for performance using a variety of processes, including hydroforming, roll forming, conventional stamping and tailor-rolled blanking. As a result, frame sections, gauges, grades, processes and materials strategically vary to maximize strength, durability and stiffness without adding unnecessary mass.
    Mixed materials also play a part in the all-new suspension. The front independent short/long arm suspension features new forged-aluminum upper control arms that are lighter and provide better wheel alignment than the stamped component they replace. The live-axle rear suspension is also redesigned, including new carbon-composite second-stage springs on LT models that save about 12 pounds (5 kg) per side over the steel springs they replace.
    The 2019 Silverado will be available with six engine/transmission combinations, giving customers more combinations of performance, efficiency and value to best fit their priorities. This includes new 5.3L and 6.2L V-8s with industry-first Dynamic Fuel Management that actively shuts off any number of cylinders, in a variety of combinations, depending on immediate needs to optimize fuel economy. The result of this industry-first technology is instant power when called for, and impressive efficiency.
    The Silverado will also be available with an all-new Duramax 3.0L inline-six turbo-diesel. Chevrolet offers diesel engines in more segments and models than any other brand, including Equinox, Cruze, Colorado, Express, Silverado 1500, Silverado HD and upcoming Silverado medium-duty models.  
    Both the 3.0L diesel and 6.2L engines are paired with a new Hydra-Matic 10-speed automatic transmission as well as start/stop technology to improve fuel economy for optimum performance and efficiency.
    No “one size fits most” trucks
    “Truck customers told us they want the perfect truck for them and not a ‘one size fits most’ truck, compromised for the masses,” said Mike Simcoe, vice president, Global Design, General Motors. “That insight shaped our design strategy with eight distinct models, each with a unique personality to fit different customers, from the affordable Work Truck to the luxurious High Country.”
    All models introduce a modern, powerful design with a strong dose of Chevy Truck DNA. For example, the “CHEVROLET” name stamped on the tailgate recalls iconic Chevy trucks of the 1950s and ‘60s, while the integrated dual exhausts and up to 33-inch tires reflect modern customer preferences.
    The Silverado’s bold, modern design is also surprisingly aerodynamic. Key elements of the front grille are front functional air curtains, similar to those introduced on the sixth-generation Camaro, that reduce aerodynamic drag by routing air around the front wheel wells. The powerful side profile further enhances aerodynamics, including an integrated spoiler at the rear edge of the cab that directs air onto the tailgate lip, reducing wind drag from the bed. Changes like these result in a 7 percent increase in aerodynamic efficiency.
    The 2019 Silverado offers eight trims (see descriptions, next page), designed for three distinct buyer profiles:
    “High Value” customers want the capability of a full-size truck at a great value. “High Volume” customers represent the heart of the truck market, requiring the capability of a full-size truck as well as the creature comforts of a passenger vehicle. “High Feature” customers represent the fastest-growing part of the truck market and want luxury-car refinement and appointments without sacrificing capability or durability. The eight trims also reflect another key differentiator for truck buyers: chrome.
    “Chrome has become more polarizing, and more personal, than any other aspect of truck design,” said Rich Scheer, director, Exterior Design, Chevrolet Trucks. “Some customers want no chrome at all and only body-color or blacked-out trim. Others feel a truck isn’t a truck without a chrome bumper, but feel extra chrome can be too ‘flashy.’ Others want as much chrome as they can get.”
    Accordingly, the eight trims are tailored to give customers a wide range of features and levels of chrome, enabling customers to choose the best truck for their personal preferences.
    More functional and more connected interiors
    The interior design was also strongly influenced by customer feedback. Because truck owners use their vehicles for both hauling cargo and transporting people, customers’ top priorities were more comfortable seating, more interior cargo storage and more functional, easy-to-use controls.
    Accordingly, the cab has been stretched, with crew-cab models now offering 3 inches of additional rear-seat legroom for an impressive 44.5 inches of front legroom and 43.8 inches of rear legroom.
    New available storage options include two 10-liter bins integrated in the second-row seatbacks for holding small items like gloves or tie-down straps, as well as a large 24-liter storage tray under the second-row seat that can secure everything from gallons of milk to fishing rods and tackle boxes.
    Every surface has been designed for function and ergonomics, from the rotary knob textures to the infotainment screen angle. Even the luxurious High Country is subjected to stringent durability tests, including 100,000 seat-slide tests to make sure the supple seats meet the expectations of our toughest owners.
    The Silverado was already the first pickup to offer 4G LTE Wi-Fi connectivity, Apple Car Play, Android Auto, wireless phone charging and OnStar safety and security features. For 2019, that leadership will be improved with new safety and convenience features to be announced later this year.
    Making the Most Dependable, Longest Lasting full-size trucks even more so
    “Truck customers told us they depend on their trucks for much more than just transportation,” said Herrick. “Many use their trucks to earn a paycheck, or to do what they enjoy most when they’re off the clock. Given how important trucks are to our customers, we set a lofty goal for exceeding the dependability and longevity of the current Silverado.”
    To do so, the engineering team doubled many of the key validation metrics for the next-gen truck, making it the most-tested vehicle GM has ever produced. That includes accumulating a staggering seven million miles of real-world testing before the first Silverado is delivered to customers.
    The 2019 Chevrolet Silverado will be on display at the North American International Auto Show through Jan. 28 in Detroit. Production of the 2019 Silverado will begin at the Fort Wayne, Indiana Assembly plant, ranked the highest-quality plant in North America by J.D. Power and Associates, with customer deliveries beginning this fall.
    2019 Silverado 1500 Trim Levels
    High Value:
    Work Truck features “CHEVROLET” graphic across the grille and tailgate, blacked-out trim and 17-inch steel wheels for maximum durability. The interior features durable vinyl or cloth seats and 7-inch color touch screen. Custom features a body-color styling theme, 20-inch painted aluminum wheels, LED signature taillamps and available integrated dual exhaust. Custom Trailboss (new for 2019) adds off-road equipment to the Custom, including a 2-inch suspension lift and the Z71 Off Road Package with a locking rear differential, skid plates, Rancho shocks, 18-inch wheels and Goodyear Duratrac off-road tires. High Volume:
    LT features chrome accents on the bumpers, front grille and mirror caps, Chevrolet bowtie in the grille, LED reflector headlamps and signature daytime running lights. The interior features an 8-inch color touch screen and available leather seating surfaces RST (new for 2019) brings a street-performance appearance to the LT, with body-color trim, full LED lighting (foglamps, headlamps and taillamps) and up to 22-inch wheels with all-season tires. LT Trailboss (new for 2019) adds off-road equipment to the LT, including a 2-inch suspension lift and the Z71 Off Road Package, including locking rear differential, skid plates, Rancho shocks, 18-inch wheels and Goodyear Duratrac off-road tires. High Feature:
    LTZ features chrome accents on the bumpers, front grille, mirror caps, door handles and hockey-stick beltline as well as power folding and heated outside rearview mirrors. Leather interior trim is standard equipment. High Country features an exclusive front grille design with two-tone chrome and bronze finish, body-color accents plus chrome assist steps from wheel to wheel. It also includes the power up/down tailgate as standard equipment.  Note: Class-exclusive claims based on product information available at the time of publication.

    William Maley
    By William Maley
    Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com
    January 13, 2013
    Its a momentous occasion whenever Chevrolet introduces a new Corvette and the introduction of the seventh-generation model tonight in Detroit is no exception to this. The seventh-generation Corvette brings forth a many changes to vehicle, starting with its name. Chevrolet resurrected the Stingray nameplate and put it on this new Corvette.
    The exterior design is a mishmash of the C6 and 2009 Stingray concept. Up front there is a wide grille, a more sculpted hood, and HID headlights. The side features more creases and numerous vents. The one part that will get a lot of controversy is the C7's rear end. Its completely unlike any other Corvette rear end at all thanks in part to the unique shape of taillights, new vents, and quad tailpipes.
    Under the C7's skin, Chevrolet has made a lot of changes. The C7 rides atop a atop an aluminum frame (Like the C6 Z06 and ZR1). That helps drop 99 pounds and increases rigidity by 57%. Other weight loss tricks include hollow, cast-aluminum lower control arms, carbon roof and hood panels, a sheet-molded compound for the fenders, doors and rear quarters; and advanced carbon-nano composite underbody panels. These changes drop another 37 pounds and gives the C7 a 50/50 weight balance.
    Power comes a 6.2L LT1 V8 engine with cylinder-deactivation that produces 450 horsepower and 450 pound-feet of torque. You have the choice of either a seven-speed manual transmission with rev-matching or a six-speed automatic. Chevrolet says the C7 can reach sixty in under four seconds and will best the C6's 26 MPG combined.
    The C7 will also feature a Drive Mode Selector that allows drivers to pick from five different settings (Weather, Eco, Tour, Sport and Track). The system will then change twelve different functions including throttle, active fuel management, steering effort, exhaust note, stability control and traction control.
    The C7's interior is a massive improvement over the outgoing model. The driver-focused cockpit features soft-touch surfaces, real aluminum trim, and optional carbon fiber accents. There are also the choice of two seats; a standard seat for long-range comfort and a competition-type seat.
    The new Corvette goes on sale in the second quarter of 2013.

    Album: 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray Live Shots
    6 images
    0 comments

    Album: 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray
    21 images
    0 comments
    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
    Press Release is on Page 2
    Return of the Stingray: The 2014 Chevrolet Corvette
    DETROIT – Chevrolet is redefining modern performance with today's debut of the all-new Corvette Stingray. And only a Corvette with the perfect balance of technology, design and performance can wear the iconic Stingray designation.
    The 2014 Corvette Stingray is the most powerful standard model ever, with an estimated 450 horsepower (335 kW) and 450 lb.-ft. of torque (610 Nm). It is also the most capable standard model ever, able to accelerate from 0-60 in less than four seconds and achieve more than 1g in cornering grip. It is expected to be the most fuel-efficient Corvette, exceeding the EPA-estimated 26 mpg of the current model.
    "Like the '63 Sting Ray, the best Corvettes embodied performance leadership, delivering cutting-edge technologies, breathtaking design and awe-inspiring driving experiences," said GM North America President Mark Reuss. "The all-new Corvette goes farther than ever, thanks to today's advancements in design, technology and engineering."
    The all-new Corvette Stingray shares only two parts with the previous generation Corvette. It incorporates an all-new frame structure and chassis, a new powertrain and supporting technologies, as well as completely new exterior and interior designs. Highlights include:
    • An interior that includes real carbon fiber, aluminum and hand-wrapped leather materials, two new seat choices – each featuring a lightweight magnesium frame for exceptional support – and dual eight-inch configurable driver/infotainment screens
    • Advanced driver technologies, including a five-position Drive Mode Selector that tailors 12 vehicle attributes to the fit the driver's environment and a new seven-speed manual transmission with Active Rev Matching that anticipates gear selections and matches engine speed for perfect shifts every time
    • An all-new 6.2L LT1 V-8 engine combines advanced technologies, including direct injection, Active Fuel Management, continuously variable valve timing and an advanced combustion system that delivers more power while using less fuel
    • Lightweight materials, including a carbon fiber hood and removable roof panel; composite fenders, doors and rear quarter panels; carbon-nano composite underbody panels and a new aluminum frame help shift weight rearward for an optimal 50/50 weight balance that supports a world-class power-to-weight ratio
    • A sculptured exterior features advanced high-intensity discharge and light-emitting diode lighting and racing-proven aerodynamics that balance low drag for efficiency and performance elements for improved stability and track capability
    • Track-capable Z51 Performance Package including: an electronic limited-slip differential, dry-sump oiling system, integral brake, differential and transmission cooling, as well as a unique aero package that further improves high-speed stability.
    "Stingray is one of the hallowed names in automotive history," said Ed Welburn, GM vice president of global design. "We knew we couldn't use the Stingray name unless the new car truly lived up to the legacy. The result is a new Corvette Stingray that breaks from tradition, while remaining instantly recognizable as a Corvette the world over."
    The new Corvette Stingray will be built at GM's Bowling Green, Ky., assembly plant, which underwent a $131-million upgrade, including approximately $52 million for a new body shop to manufacture the aluminum frame in-house for the first time.
    "We believe the Corvette represents the future of modern performance cars because it delivers more power, more driving excitement and better fuel efficiency," said Tadge Juechter, Corvette chief engineer. "The result is better performance by every measure. The 2014 Corvette delivers the fastest acceleration, the most cornering grip, the most track capability, the best braking performance and what we expect to be the best fuel economy ever for a standard Corvette."
    The 2014 Corvette Stingray coupe goes on sale in the third quarter of 2013.
    Handcrafted, high-tech interior
    • Premium materials including genuine aluminum and available carbon fiber trim
    • More connected driving experience through the smaller-diameter steering wheel and two new seat choices
    • Advanced technologies including standard dual, high-resolution information screens and available color head-up display.
    The new Corvette Stingray interior blends fine materials and craftsmanship with advanced technologies that contribute to a more connected and more engaging driving experience, said Helen Emsley, interior design director.
    "Every feature and detail in the interior is designed to enhance the driver's connection to the Corvette," Emsley said. "It starts with the fighter jet inspired wraparound cockpit; continues to build with the smaller steering wheel, more supportive seats, and high-definition, configurable screens, and is finished in gorgeous materials."
    The smaller, 14.1-inch-diameter (360 mm) steering wheel fosters a more direct, immediate feel to directional inputs. The attention to the driver extends to the smallest details, including the flat, precise stitching on the steering wheel designed to provide a smooth, consistent feel.
    Precise and elegant stitching also is seen in the available Napa leather trim of the all-new seats.
    Two seating choices will be offered: a GT seat for all-around comfort and a Competition Sport seat with more aggressive side bolstering which provides greater support on the track.
    The frame structure for both seats is made of magnesium for greater strength and less weight than comparable steel frames. They're also more rigid, contributing to the enhanced feeling of support during performance driving.
    Additional performance-enhancing details of the interior resulted from designers' "field trips" to GM's Proving Ground in Milford, Mich., where high-performance driving experiences spurred the design and implementation of several features, including a steel-reinforced grab bar on the center console for the passenger and soft-touch materials on the edge of the console, where the driver naturally braces during high-load cornering.
    High-performance driving also influenced elements of the configurable display screens and available head-up display, which vary depending on the driving mode, including the Track display inspired by the C6.R.
    The performance-supporting elements inside the new Corvette Stingray are complemented by unprecedented attention to detail and build quality, including the sweeping arch motif over the driver cockpit trim and the seamless transition of the line from the instrument panel to the door.
    All models feature a fully-wrapped interior, where every surface is covered with premium, soft-touch materials. Available materials, depending on the trim level, include Napa leather, aluminum, carbon fiber and micro-suede.
    A blend of hand craftsmanship and machined precision is intended to ensure the fit, finish and ambience of the cabin is first-rate. The leather-wrapped instrument panel, for example, features hand-selected and hand-stretched materials for better grain matching with stitching performed by robots that deliver perfect seams.
    There's even a micro-LED screen for the passenger's climate control placed below the vent on the on the dash away from the performance features on the instrument panel.
    "To ensure the high quality of the interior, we spent time working on the line alongside the team that builds the Corvette every day at Bowling Green Assembly Plant," said Ryan Vaughan, interior design manager. "And thanks to that collaboration between design, engineering and manufacturing, we were able to make adjustments that allowed us to maintain the integrity of the design, improve the assembly process and ultimately deliver what we believe to be a world-class interior."
    Driver-oriented technologies
    • Driver Mode Selector optimizes 12 vehicle attributes
    • Configurable screens and head-up display can be tailored to the driver's preference
    • Central touch screen uses gesture-recognition technology.
    At the core of the Corvette Stingray's driver-focused technologies is the cockpit-mounted Driver Mode Selector, which allows drivers to optimize the car for their driving preference and road conditions via five settings: Weather, Eco, Tour, Sport and Track.
    "The all-new Corvette Stingray is really three cars in one: It provides the comfort and functionality of a long-distance GT car, the connectedness and infotainment of a daily driver and the acceleration, grip and braking of a capable track car," said Harlan Charles, product manager.
    "With the Driver Mode Selector, we wanted to give the driver an easy way to tailor virtually every aspect of the car to fit their driving environment. The result is a more rewarding, more confident experience, whether you're commuting in a downpour or charging through the corkscrew at Laguna Seca."
    The Driver Mode Selector is easy to use via a rotary knob near the shifter. The Tour mode is the default setting for everyday driving; Weather mode is designed primarily for added confidence while driving in rain and snow; Eco mode is for achieving optimal fuel economy; Sport mode is for spirited road driving and Track mode is for track use.
    "Early in the development process, we spent time on the track, driving Corvettes hard. That experience shaped many parts of the interior, such as the instrument display in Track Mode," said Vaughn. "At 120 mph, you experience a sort of tunnel vision, as you concentrate on the next turn. At that moment, you don't need to know the next song playing on the radio."
    Twelve performance parameters are adjusted with the selection of each mode, including:
    • Gauge cluster configuration: The Tour, Eco and Weather modes feature displays for trip data, audio and navigation; Sport mode shows classic, easy-to-read sports car gauges; and Track mode's configuration shows a gauge design based on the Corvette Racing C6.R race car display with lap timer
    • ETC (Electronic Throttle Control): Adjusts the throttle input curve for the selected mode for improved responsiveness
    • Paddle-shift automatic transmission: Adjusts shift comfort and shift points
    • Active Fuel Management: in normal mode, the LT1 engine uses V-8 power during acceleration and V-4 power when coasting; in Eco mode the engine remains in V-4 mode to improve fuel economy until aggressive acceleration is needed
    • Exhaust (active exhaust system): The system adjusts the timing of the electronically controlled exhaust valves to enhance audible feedback from the V-8 depending on the drive mode
    • Electronic limited-slip differential (Z51): Adjusts the rate at which the limited slip engages, to balance between steering response and stability in different driving conditions; more aggressive performance in Sport and Track modes
    • Steering: Assist effort is adjusted in the modes to provide the driver with the correct steering feel for the driving condition
    • Magnetic Ride Control: Adjusts shock damping based on road conditions, from optimized comfort to performance driving
    • Launch control: Available in Sport and Track modes for manual and automatic transmissions, providing maximum off-the-line acceleration
    • Active handling (StabiliTrak stability control): A "competitive" setting is available in Sport and Track modes and is more suited for on-track conditions. It can also be disabled, giving the driver complete control
    • Traction control: Weather mode tailors traction control and engine torque for driving in inclement conditions
    • Performance Traction Management: Available in the Sport and Track modes and offers five settings of torque reduction and brake intervention for track driving.
    Three configurable displays, including a pair of eight-inch screens and color head-up display, deliver personalized information and convey the different performance parameters of each drive mode.
    The two eight-inch screens offer excellent visibility in direct sunlight, with 650 cd/m2 of brightness for the one integrated into the instrument cluster and 1,000 cd/m2 of brightness for the one in the center stack, making it among the brightest screens in the industry. The screen in the center stack also features touch-screen control with gesture recognition and can be lowered to reveal a hidden storage that includes a USB input for device charging or uploads.
    The Corvette Stingray delivers an advanced infotainment system, featuring Chevrolet MyLink and high-definition radio, as well as enhanced OnStar with 3D navigation maps. An additional USB port in the center console, a stand-alone audio input jack and an SD card slot provide seamless connectivity.
    An available premium 10-speaker audio system includes a bass box and two subwoofers – and speakers with rare-earth magnets that deliver greater sound quality with reduced weight and size.
    Every line counts on Corvette Stingray's functionally elegant exterior
    • Aerodynamic design integrates strategies from Corvette racing
    • Signature lighting includes distinctive frosted light-emitting diode daytime driving lights, high-intensity discharge headlamps and indirect-LED taillamps
    • Carbon fiber hood and removable roof panel enhance front/rear weight balance
    Corvette Stingray's provocative exterior styling is as functional as it is elegant, said Ken Parkinson, executive director of global design.
    "Developing a new Corvette, while every designer's dream, is not an easy task," Parkinson said. "The goal was a bold design statement that embraced the advanced technology of the car, while enhancing its overall performance in everything from the wind tunnel to the track. The result is a new Corvette Stingray – a fantastic car that breaks new ground yet remains true to the fundamental elements that make a Corvette a Corvette."
    While no single detail is repeated from previous generations, the new Corvette Stingray include the distinctive profile defined by a long dash-to-axle ratio and the greenhouse evoking the canopy of a fighter jet with dual-element taillamps. To this foundation, designers built a form vocabulary from two very different sources: aerospace and nature.
    "For the new Corvette to be called a Stingray, it had to deliver an incredible, purposeful visual impact – just as the original did in 1963," said Tom Peters, exterior design director. "That visual impact is evident in fighter jets and the Stingray animal itself. Their beauty comes from their purpose, designed to cut through air or water as quickly and efficiently as possible. As with aircraft and living forms, every transition on every surface of the Corvette Stingray serves a purpose executed with beauty and proportion."
    Lighting is a signature element of the Corvette Stingray's design and reinforces its high-tech aesthetic. At the front, indirect white LED lamps form a distinctive daytime styling cue. They are set in a black-chrome lamp housing with standard HID projector headlamps. The turn signals feature edge-lit amber LED lighting.
    All-new, dual-element taillamps represent the greatest departure from tradition and are among the car's most dramatic elements. The three-dimensional, sculpted lenses house innovative indirect LED lighting. The state-of-the-art lighting uses hidden LED lamps that cast their light up from the bottom of the housing into a reverse reflector, creating an even glow. LED lamps are also used for the white backup lamps. The taillamps integrate functional aircraft-style air outlets for the available differential and transmission coolers.
    "From the front or rear, the signature lighting brings the new Corvette to life," said Peters. "It looks beautiful, sinister and more than a little intimidating. It gives the Corvette a nighttime appearance unlike anything else on the street."
    When it comes to aerodynamics, the new Stingray is in a league of its own. Advanced computer-aided modeling programs were employed to predict and track airflow over, under and through the new Corvette's body. Engineers and designers also relied on data gleaned from the Corvette Racing program – the most successful program ever in the American Le Mans Series and the 2012 GT class champion – to help balance front and rear grip for high-speed stability.
    Many hours were spent in the wind tunnel hand-sculpting surfaces for aesthetics and performance. Functional exterior elements include:
    • All models have a new grille/radiator arrangement and hood vents. Venting air out of the hood reduces total front-end lift for improved steering response at high speeds
    • The front fender side coves also help vent underhood air pressure to reduce aerodynamic drag
    • Models with the automatic transmission or Z51 Performance Package feature a functional vent on driver's left side directing air over a heat exchanger for the transmission fluid and a similar arrangement on the passenger side that directs air
    • over a heat exchanger for the electronic limited slip differential
    • Airflow through the differential and transmission heat exchangers exit through the aircraft-inspired taillamp vents and lower-rear fascia air outlets
    • The Z51 Performance Package also includes brake-cooling ducts, a unique rear spoiler and additional air deflectors for enhanced track capability.
    "Every square inch of the 2014 Corvette's exterior is designed to enhance high-performance driving," said Kirk Bennion, exterior design manager. "The team delivered a great balance of low drag for efficiency and performance elements for improved stability and track capability – all in a sculpted design that excites in all the ways that a Corvette has for six decades."
    Engineered to race, built for the road
    • New aluminum frame structure is 57-percent stiffer and 99 pounds (45 kg) lighter than the current steel frame
    • Innovative use of composite materials, including carbon fiber the hood and roof panels, lightweight Sheet Molded Compound for the fenders, doors and rear quarter panels, and carbon-nano composite for the underbody panels help reduce the weight of the body by a 37 pounds (17 kg)
    • New LT1 V-8 uses advanced technologies to produce more power with less fuel and is paired with an industry-exclusive seven-speed manual transmission with Active Rev Matching for more precise up and down shifts.
    The new Corvette Stingray takes advantage of lightweight materials, advanced manufacturing techniques and technology transfer from the Corvette Racing program to produce an ideal 50/50 weight balance and to deliver a world-class power-to-weight ratio.
    "Chevrolet has a long history of using racing to improve production cars, and nowhere is that more evident than with Corvette," said Jeuchter. "We continually apply technologies and strategies developed for Corvette Racing directly to the production car. That influence can be seen in virtually every aspect of the new Corvette Stingray, from the aerodynamic design to the use of carbon fiber, to the cooling techniques and even in the brake system
    The technologically advanced foundation is an all-new aluminum frame structure that is 57 percent stiffer and 99 pounds (45 kg) lighter. The greater torsional rigidity reduces unwanted noise and improves ride and handling.
    Compared to the previous generation, which used continuous hydroformed main frame rails with a constant 2mm wall thickness, the new Corvette's frame features main rails composed of five customized aluminum segments, including aluminum extrusions at each end, a center main rail section and hollow-cast nodes at the suspension interface points. Each segment is tuned – varying in thickness from 2mm to 11mm – tailoring the gauge, shape and strength properties to optimize the requirements for each frame section with minimal weight.
    The frame is assembled at an all-new welding shop at the Bowling Green Assembly Plant using a unique laser welding process in which a computer-controlled beam of high energy joins the components with exceptional precision and tolerances of about 0.001-inch.
    Supporting the frame's greater strength and lower weight are complementing chassis elements, including hollow-cast aluminum front and rear cradles that are approximately 25-percent lighter and 20-percent stiffer than the solid cradles used on the previous structure.
    The innovative use of materials includes a standard carbon fiber hood and roof panel, as well as underbody panels created with carbon-nano composite technology, an advanced blend of traditional composite material and carbon fiber, which allows lighter underbody panels without a loss of strength or stiffness. Fenders, doors, rear quarter panels and the rear hatch panel are made with lighter-density Sheet Molded Compound than the previous generation. Combined, these materials save approximately 37 pounds (17 kg) versus the previous body structure.
    The lightweight elements of the Stingray contribute to the ideal 50/50 weight balance. Combined with its estimated 450 horsepower (335 kW), the new Corvette delivers a better power-to-weight ratio than the Porsche 911 Carrera or Audi R8.
    Those 450 horses are generated by an all-new LT1 6.2L Small Block V-8 engine, which produces an estimated 450 lb.-ft. of torque (610 Nm). More importantly, it generates 50 lb.-ft. more low-end torque than the previous 6.2L engine, matching the 7.0L LS7 engine from the 2013 Corvette Z06 from 1,000 to 4,000 rpm.
    The engine's performance comes from combining advanced technologies like direct injection, Active Fuel Management and continuously variable valve timing with an advanced combustion system. More than 10 million hours of computational analysis went into the new Small Block's design, including more than 6 million hours alone on the combustion system.
    The LT1 is backed by a choice of active exhaust systems that are less restrictive than the previous generation, due in part to an increase in diameter from 2.5 inches to 2.75 inches. The standard system offers a 13-percent improvement in airflow and features a pair of butterfly valves that contribute to greater refinement at cruising speeds when the engine is operating in fuel-saving V-4 mode.
    An available dual-mode active exhaust system offers a 27-percent improvement in airflow. It features two additional valves that open to a lower-restriction path through the mufflers. When open, these valves increase engine performance and produce a more powerful exhaust note.
    The LT1 is mated to either a six-speed paddle-shift automatic transmission or an industry-exclusive TREMEC TR6070 seven-speed manual with Active Rev Matching. The Corvette retains its distinctive rear transaxle layout for optimal weight balance.
    The seven-speed manual incorporates rev-matching technology for upshifts and downshifts. This driver-selectable feature can be easily engaged or disengaged via paddles on the steering wheel. The seven-speed is used with a new dual-mass flywheel and dual-disc clutch, which deliver greater shift quality and feel through lower inertia. The transmission with the Z51 Performance Package includes specific close-ratio gearing for more aggressive driving.
    "Active Rev Matching makes the new Corvette easier and more fun to drive in performance conditions," said Jeuchter. "It anticipates the next gear selection and electronically 'blips' the throttle to match engine speed for a seamless gear change."
    A six-speed Hydra-Matic 6L80 paddle-shift automatic is also available. It is optimized for use with Active Fuel Management and features a lower-inertia torque converter for improved shift quality and shift speeds. In addition, shift feel and shift points can be adjusted through the Driver Mode Selector.
    More direct, more connected driving feel
    • Third-generation Magnetic Ride Control for greater comfort and control
    • Electric power steering system tailors steering response and feel
    • Electronic limited-slip differential delivers optimal traction
    The new Corvette Stingray's chassis and suspension are designed to take advantage of the lighter, stiffer structure. The reduced structural flex allowed engineers to more precisely tune the suspension and steering for a more nimble and responsive driving experience.
    "An important goal for the seventh-generation Corvette was to create a more intimate and connected driving experience, said Mike Bailey, chassis vehicle system engineer. "Whether on the open road or on the track, we wanted drivers to feel comfortable and confident behind the wheel."
    While the Corvette Stingray retains the racing-proven short/long-arm suspension design, front and rear, the components are all-new. Improvements to the suspension include hollow lower control arms which save approximately nine pounds (4 kg) per vehicle and new aluminum rear toe links which save 2.4 pounds (1.1 kg) over previous steel links.
    The Corvette Stingray rides on new 18 x 8.5-inch front and 19 x 10-inch rear wheels, while models with the Z51 Performance Package roll on 19 x 8.5-inch front and 20 x 10-inch rear forged aluminum wheels. New Michelin Pilot Super Sport run-flat tires developed specifically for the seventh-generation Corvette deliver comparable levels of grip than the wider tires of previous models.
    As a result, the track-oriented Corvette Stingray with the Z51 Performance Package is capable of 1g in cornering acceleration – comparable to the 2013 Corvette Grand Sport. Significantly, that is achieved with narrower and lighter wheels and tires. The reduced "footprint" reduces rolling resistance, steering effort and road noise, contributing to a more nimble feel, more immediate steering response and greater touring comfort and efficiency.
    Dimensionally, the new Corvette's wheelbase is approximately an inch longer than the previous generation, with front and rear tracks that are almost an inch wider. Those changes provide a more stable feel, particularly at high speeds, while the turning radius is decreased by approximately two feet for greater maneuverability in tight turns.
    The Corvette Stingray features standard 35mm-piston Bilstein monotube shocks that connect to dual-path aluminum shock mounts that separate the shock rod and shock body load paths. The Z51 Performance Package comes with 45mm-piston Bilstein dampers for more aggressive body control and track capability. Z51 is available with the third-generation Magnetic Ride Control, which features a new twin-wire/dual-coil damper system that reacts 40 percent faster, enabling improved ride comfort and body control.
    The new electric power steering system offers variable ratios and variable effort to tailor responsiveness and feel for each driving situation. It also delivers more precise control and feedback to the driver, along with greater variability of effort for high-performance driving and greater on-center sensitivity and linearity. Steering feel was further improved by increasing steering column stiffness by 150 percent, increasing intermediate shaft torsional stiffness by 600 percent, and mounting the steering gear to the front cradle structure. As a result the steering system is five times stiffer than the previous generation.
    A smart electronic limited-slip differential (eLSD) is included in the Z51 Performance Package and continuously makes the most of the torque split between the rear wheels. The system features a hydraulically actuated clutch that can infinitely vary clutch engagement and can respond from open to full engagement in tenths of a second. It shifts torque based on a unique algorithm which factors in vehicle speed, steering input and throttle position to improve steering feel, handling balance and traction.
    "The electronic limited-slip differential transforms the Stingray by optimizing handling for the driving situation," said Mike Bailey, vehicle systems engineer, chassis. "By continuously modulating the torque split between the rear wheels, the eLSD can improve traction accelerating out of corner, improve stability on the highway and enhance steering turn-in and responsiveness."
    The eLSD is fully integrated with StabiliTrak and Performance Traction Management systems. Its calibrations vary among three modes, based on the Drive Mode Selector setting:
    • Mode 1 is the default setting for normal driving and emphasizes vehicle stability
    • Mode 2 is engaged when electronic stability control is turned off in the Sport or Track Driver Modes. This calibration enables more nimble turn-in and traction while accelerating out of a corner
    • Mode 3 is automatically selected when Performance Traction Management is engaged. This calibration has the same function as Mode 2, but is fine-tuned to work with Performance Traction Management.
    Standard Brembo brakes, with four-piston fixed calipers derived from racing, deliver exceptional stopping power on the street or track. System highlights include:
    • 12.6-inch (320 mm) front rotors and 13.3-inch (338 mm) rear rotors are standard and have 35 percent more swept area than previous-generation brakes. Consequently stopping distance is improved 9 percent
    • Dual-cast, slotted 13.6-inch (345 mm) front rotors and 13.3-inch (338 mm) slotted rear rotors are included with Z51 Performance Package. They have 6percent more swept area than the previous-generation Grand Sport and are cooled front and rear for improved track capability. Consequently stopping distance is improved 5 percent
    • All brake packages have fixed front and rear calipers are stiffer for more even pad wear, reduced drag and improved modulation.

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
    January 8, 2012
    Joining the growing list of vehicles showing up before the embargo is the new Cadillac ATS. Pictures of the new model were released a few hours ago and show the ATS is gunning for the BMW 3-Series.
    Design of the new ATS takes many cues from its big brother, the CTS, but with some softer lines up front and on the flanks. Around back, the ATS sports Cadillac's trademark vertical tail lamps, plus a pair of inset exhaust tips.
    Cadillac is very confident that the new ATS will give the 3-Series a run for its money. The ATS boasts a nearly 50/50 weight distribution, and features a five-link independent rear suspension; a first for Cadillac. The ATS is also the lightest Cadillac, tipping the scales at 3,400 lbs.
    Power will come from engines; the base is a 2.5L four-cylinder producing an estimated 200 HP and 188 lb-ft of torque. Next is the 2.0L turbo-four producing 270 HP and 260 lb-ft of torque. And there is the stalwart 3.6L DI V6 producing 318 HP and 267 lb-ft of torque. Transmissions will include a six-speed manual or automatic.
    Inside, the ATS takes it up a notch, with eye-catching interior colors, the choice of either wood or carbon fiber trim, and cut-and-sew stitching on the dash and seats. The ATS will also feature Cadillac's CUE infotainment system which offers a eight-inch LCD touchscreen, Bluetooth, USB, auxiliary inputs, and a SD card slot.
    Cadillac hasn't announced pricing or fuel economy for the new ATS, but has said the ATS will be on dealer lots this summer.

    Press Release is on Page 2
    For release: Sunday, Jan. 8, 2012, 6 p.m. ET
    2013 Cadillac ATS Challenges the Status Quo
    • All-new, lightweight, rear-wheel-drive architecture with one of the lowest curb weights in the segment – less than 3,400 pounds (1,542 kg)
    • Broad lineup of engines, including two four-cylinders and a V-6 for North America, capitalizes on lightweight structure for performance with efficiency
    • Cadillac CUE, a comprehensive, in-vehicle experience that merges intuitive design with auto industry-first controls and commands for information and entertainment data
    DETROIT – Cadillac today introduced the 2013 ATS, an all-new compact luxury sports sedan intended to challenge the world's best premium cars. Developed on an all-new, lightweight vehicle architecture, Cadillac's entry into the world's most significant luxury car segment goes on sale this summer.
    The rear-drive ATS brings Cadillac's blend of technologically driven performance, elegance and design to a new audience of spirited drivers. Its sophisticated driving experience is enhanced with Cadillac CUE, a comprehensive, in-vehicle user experience that merges intuitive design with industry-first controls and commands for information and media data.
    "Designed with quick, nimble and fun-to-drive dynamics, ATS expands Cadillac's portfolio into a crucial global segment," said Don Butler, vice president of marketing for Cadillac. "For a new group of luxury consumers, this is a car that will fit their lifestyle and challenge the segment's status quo."
    The Cadillac ATS is a new expression of Cadillac's Art & Science execution philosophy, built on a foundation of driving dynamics and mass efficiency. It is the most agile and lightweight Cadillac, with one of the lowest curb weights in the segment – less than 3,400 pounds (1,542 kg).
    Germany's famed Nürburgring served as one of the key testing grounds, along with additional roads, racetracks and laboratories around the globe, ATS engineers balanced performance with Cadillac's trademark refinement. Contributing components and features include:
    • Nearly 50/50 weight balance
    • Cadillac's first five-link independent rear suspension using lightweight, high-strength steel and efficient straight link designs
    • A multi-link double-pivot MacPherson-strut front suspension with direct-acting stabilizer bar
    • Driver-adjustable FE3 sport suspension with Magnetic Ride Control real-time damping
    • Underbody aerodynamic shields
    • Premium (belt driven) electric variable-effort steering gear from ZF Steering Systems
    • Four-channel ABS with available Brembo performance brakes
    • Available all-wheel drive
    "More than just another new entry, the ATS aims to change the status quo of the European-dominated segment," said Butler. "That is why our approach in all elements of its development is so extensive and focused."
    A broad lineup of engines – including two four-cylinders and a V-6 for North America – delivers strong power to the ATS and capitalizes on the car's lightweight structure to complement its performance with efficiency. The optional engines include an all-new 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder rated at 270 horsepower (201 kW) and Cadillac's award-winning 3.6L V-6, estimated at 318 horsepower (237 kW).
    At 135hp/L, the new 2.0T is one of the most power-dense engines in the industry, topping engines from European competitors. ATS will offer both manual and automatic transmission options, along with rear-wheel and all-wheel-drive configurations.
    The ATS will deliver peak highway fuel economy of more than 30 mpg.
    A spirit of lightness and balance
    Making the ATS one of the segment's lightest cars was a fundamental criterion for and the guiding principle during its development, but it was done in a nuanced manner that ensures a refined driving experience.
    "Low weight gives the ATS a more nimble and controllable feel, while also optimizing the performance and efficiency of the powertrains," said David Masch, ATS chief engineer. "But we were careful to manage the weight while maintaining Cadillac's signature levels of refinement."
    Optimizing the ATS's mass was the result of a four-pronged philosophy that included strict adherence to original architectural goals, measured load management throughout the vehicle, benchmarking components to see if lighter solutions were available and an overall culture that "weighed" the mass of every component in the car against all aspects of its development.
    An aluminum hood, magnesium engine mount brackets and even lightweight, natural-fiber door trim panels contribute to the ATS's low overall mass – and reflect the systematic approach of evaluating every gram that went into the car. But some weight was deemed not only beneficial, but essential to the ATS's driving experience. An example is the cast iron differential: Engineers found they could improve fuel economy with a cast iron differential rather than a lighter aluminum version.
    And while the rear suspension is mostly steel, the focus on load management and straight links enabled significant weight savings without using alternate materials. This helps offset the weight of the engine and transmission at the front of the vehicle, helping the ATS deliver its near-perfect 50/50 weight balance, while also contributing to lower noise and vibration. A similar approach was taken on the wheels, where extra structural aluminum was strategically added to further reduce vibration.
    "We approached development by counting all the grams in the ATS," said Masch. "We minimized them where we could and put them to the best use where they were needed."
    Tailored design weaves in signature style and refinement
    The 2013 Cadillac ATS interprets Cadillac's Art & Science design language in a new proportion, tailoring the signature styling and refinement cues for the most compact Cadillac while upholding – and advancing – the exemplary attention to detail and technological elements for which the brand is known.
    A long, 109.3-inch (2,775 mm) wheelbase and wide front/rear tracks are the cornerstones of the ATS's firmly planted stance, which is enhanced by short overhangs and taut sheet metal that appears to wrap tightly around the tires. Seventeen-inch wheels are standard and 18-inch wheels are available.
    Bold vertical lighting elements – including new LED front signature lighting detail – as well as illuminating door handles and active grille shutters lend technologically advanced style and function to the ATS. The grille shutters close at certain highway speeds to reduce aerodynamic drag and enhance fuel economy.
    A driver-focused interior with integrated technology and crafted materials complements the exterior elements and supports the ATS's driving experience. Everything from the placement of the pedals to the position of the shifter is designed for effortless and intuitive performance driving. Available performance seats have power-adjustable bolsters to optimize lateral support during high-load cornering.
    Contributing to the interior's intuitive feel is an instrument panel that wraps into the doors and a center stack in the mid-instrument panel that flows into the center console. LED lighting for the bold gauge cluster enables clear, at-a-glance viewing in all lighting conditions, while ambient lighting accents functional elements of the console and doors.
    Real wood, plated metal plating and carbon fiber trim and Cadillac's cut-and-sew cut-and-sew instrument panel, console and doors enhance the emotional connection to the ATS. Choices of many interior color themes, each with unique accent trim material, cover a wide range of flavors – from light, open and warm to black and serious, to bold, technical and sporty.
    CUE and ATS technologies
    The ATS is offered with Cadillac CUE, a comprehensive, in-vehicle experience that merges intuitive design with auto industry-first controls and commands for information and entertainment data. It is designed to be unique for each consumer, from the "simple user" to the fully connected "super user."
    CUE, which stands for Cadillac User Experience, pairs entertainment and information data from up to 10 Bluetooth-enabled mobile devices, USBs, SD cards and MP3 players with a vehicle infotainment system that reduces complexity through customized information, voice commands and fewer buttons and larger icons. For example, most of today's luxury cars have around 20 buttons controlling the radio and entertainment functions. CUE has only four.
    The heart of CUE is the eight-inch LCD multi-touch sensitive screen, seamlessly integrated into the top of the central instrument panel and a motorized fully capacitive faceplate at the bottom concealing a 1.8L storage area. The vibrant LCD screen displays CUE's home page, which resembles a smart phone's screen by using large, easy-to-target icons to execute commands. Capacitive technology refers to using electrodes to sense the conductive properties of objects, such as a finger.
    In addition to CUE, the ATS is offered with other technologies, including:
    • Bluetooth phone connectivity with voice recognition
    • USB, auxiliary and SD memory card ports
    • SiriusXM Satellite Radio with three-month trial subscription
    • Keyless access and keyless push-button start
    • Reconfigurable 5.7-inch instrument panel cluster display
    • Full-color reconfigurable heads-up display.
    The ATS is offered as a well-equipped standard model and in Luxury, Performance and Premium Collections. A Bose® Cabin Surround audio system is offered on the standard model, as well as Luxury and Performance Collections. It is standard with the Premium Collection. A navigation system is also available with Luxury and Performance Collections and standard with the Premium Collection.
    'Control and alert' safety strategy
    Safety in the ATS is based on Cadillac's "control and alert" strategy that employs advanced technologies – including radar, cameras and ultrasonic sensors – to help prevent crashes.
    The safety features bolster driver vision and awareness of road hazards, and intervenes to help the driver avert potential crashes. In some cases, Cadillac's advanced crash-avoidance systems will act without the driver, such as automatic braking, which will activate based on information indicating potential hazards.
    Among the most sophisticated of the features is Front and Rear Automatic Brakes. This relies on short-range radar technology and ultrasonic sensors to help the driver prevent front and rear low-speed collisions via a progression of alerts that extend to complete braking, if necessary.
    Optional advanced safety features include:
    • Full Speed Range Adaptive Cruise Control
    • Intelligent Brake Assist
    • Forward Collision Alert
    • Brake Pre-Fill Automatic Collision Preparation
    • Lane Departure Warning
    • Side Blind Zone Alert
    • Rear Vision Camera With Dynamic Guidelines
    • Adaptive Forward Lighting
    • Hill Hold/Start Assist (Standard, manual transmission)
    The advanced technology safety features complement the ATS's roster of other safety features, including eight standard air bags (10 with optional features), safety belt pretensioners and load limiters, StabiliTrak electronic stability control system with traction control and four-wheel disc brakes with four-channel ABS.
    ATS also features OnStar standard for one year. It can use GPS and cellular phone technology to automatically call for help in the event of a crash. OnStar service also includes myCadillac and OnStar myLink mobile apps, which offer vehicle information, controls and OnStar services via the customer's iPhone or Android smart phone.
    About Cadillac
    Cadillac has been a leading luxury auto brand since 1902. In recent years, Cadillac has engineered a historic renaissance led by artful engineering and advanced technology. More information on Cadillac can be found at media.cadillac.com.
    2013 CADILLAC ATS PRELIMINARY SPECIFICATIONS
    Overview
    Model: Cadillac ATS Sedan
    Body style / driveline: 4-door luxury sport luxury sedan, RWD/AWD
    Construction: Unitized welded steel body with direct-mounted front cradle and rubber-isolated, multi-link independent rear suspension
    EPA vehicle class: small car
    Manufacturing location: Lansing Grand River Assembly, Lansing, Mich.
    Engines
    2.0L Turbo DI VVT 2.5L I-4 DI VVT 3.6L V-6 DI VVT
    Displacement (cu in / cc): 122 / 1998 150 / 2457 217 / 3564
    Bore & stroke (in / mm): 3.39 x 3.39 / 86 x 86 3.46 x 3.97 / 88 x 101 3.7 x 3.37 / 94 x 85.6
    Block material: cast aluminum cast aluminum cast aluminum
    Cylinder head material: cast aluminum cast aluminum cast aluminum
    Valvetrain: DOHC, four-valves per cylinder, continuously variable valve timing DOHC, four valves per cylinder, continuously variable valve timing DOHC, four valves per cylinder, continuously variable valve timing
    Fuel delivery: direct high-pressure fuel injection direct high-pressure fuel injection direct high-pressure fuel injection
    Compression ratio: 9.2:1 11.4:1 11.5:1
    Horsepower (hp / kW @ rpm): 270 / 201 @ 5300 (est) 200 / 149 @ 6200 (est) 318 / 237 @ 6800 (est - gas)
    Torque (lb-ft / Nm @ rpm): 260 / 353 @ 2400 (est) 188 / 255 @ 4500 (est) 267 / 362 @ 4900 (est - gas)
    Recommended fuel: premium recommended but not required regular unleaded regular unleaded or E85
    Maximum engine speed (rpm): 6350 7000 7200
    Estimated fuel economy: TBD TBD TBD
    Transmissions
    Tremec M3L TR3160 Hydra-Matic 6L45
    Type: fully synchronized six-speed manual with single overdrive six-speed, electronically controlled, automatic overdrive with torque converter clutch
    Gear ratios (:1):
    First: 4.12 4.06
    Second: 2.62 2.37
    Third: 1.81 1.55
    Fourth: 1.30 1.16
    Fifth: 1.00 0.85
    Sixth: 0.80 0.67
    Reverse: 3.75 3.20
    Final drive ratio: 3.27 3.27 (2.5L, 3.6L)
    3.45 (2.0T)
    Chassis / Suspension
    Configuration: rear-wheel drive
    Differential: open (FE2 suspension); mechanical limited-slip (FE3 suspension)
    Front: MacPherson-type with dual lower ball joints and direct-acting stabilizer bar; Magnetic Ride Control (FE3)
    Rear: independent five-link with monotube shock absorbers; Magnetic Ride Control (FE3)
    Steering type: ZF rack-mounted electric, power-assisted and variable assist
    Steering ratio: FE2: 16.8:1
    FE3: 15.3:1
    Steering turns, lock-to-lock: FE2: 3.16
    FE3: 2.86
    Turn circle (ft / m): FE2 RWD: 36.38 / 11.09
    FE3 RWD: 35.99 / 10.97
    FE2 AWD: 38.05 / 11.60
    Chassis control: four-channel StabiliTrak w/ brake assist and traction control
    Wheels and Tires
    Wheel size and type: 17x8-inch aluminum (painted)
    17x8-inch aluminum (polished)
    18x8-inch aluminum (machined-face)
    18x8-inch aluminum (polished)
    Tire size: P225/45R17 90H all-season
    P225/45R17 90V run-flat all-season
    225/40R18 92V run-flat all-season
    225/40R18 88W / 255/35R18 90W run-flat summer-only
    225/35ZR19 88Y / 255/30ZR19 91Y run-flat all-season (LPO)
    Brakes
    Type: four-wheel disc with sliding calipers on base; four-channel ABS/TCS w/ DRP; Brembo brakes with fixed calipers on Luxury, Performance and Premium collections
    Rotor type and thickness (in / mm): Standard front: 11.8 x 1.02 (300 x 26) vented, with Ferritic Nitro Carbunized process for corrosion resistance
    Standard rear: 12.4 x 0.90 (315 x 23) vented, with Ferritic Nitro Carbunized process for corrosion resistance
    Uplevel front: 12.6 x 1.18 (321 x 30) vented, with Ferritic Nitro Carbunized process for corrosion resistance
    Uplevel rear: 12.4 x 0.90 (315 x 23) vented, with Ferritic Nitro Carbunized process for corrosion resistance
    Dimensions
    Exterior
    Wheelbase (in / mm): 109.3 / 2775
    Length (in / mm): 182.8 / 4643
    Height (in / mm): 55.9 / 1421
    Width (in / mm): 71.1 / 1805
    Track (in / mm): front: 59.5 / 1512
    rear: 60.9 / 1548
    Curb weight (lb / kg): less than 3,400 / 1,542 (approx.)
    Weight distribution (% front / rear): 51 / 49
    Interior
    Legroom (in / mm): front: 42.5 / 1079
    rear: 33.5 / 851
    Headroom (in / mm): front: 38.6 / 980
    rear: 36.8 / 935
    Shoulder room (in / mm): front: 55.2 / 1345
    rear: 53.9 / 1370
    Hip room (in / mm): front: 53.0 / 1345
    rear: 52.3 / 1328
    Capacities
    Seating capacity (front / rear): 2 / 3
    EPA passenger volume (cu ft / L): 90.9 / 2573
    EPA trunk volume (cu ft / L): 10.2 / 290
    Trailer towing maximum (lb / kg): 1000 / 454 (3.6L)
    Fuel tank (gal / L): 16 / 60.5
    Engine oil (qt / L): TBD
    Cooling system (qt / L): 8.1 / 7.7 (2.0T)
    7.1 / 6.7 (2.5L)
    11 / 10.4 (3.6L)
    *SAE certified.
    Note: Information shown is current at time of publication.

    William Maley
    For the longest time, we've been hearing about a new car that would be replacing the dreadful Dodge Caliber. Today, Dodge revealed the replacement.
    Meet the 2013 Dodge Dart, which will make it's debut next month at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. Previously, the car was known as the Hornet till Dodge announced last month the name wouldn't be used.
    The Dart will be the first Chrysler vehicle using a Fiat vehicle architecture; the Alfa Romeo Giulietta in this case. The Giulietta's platform has been widened and lengthened for the Dart. Dodge says high-strength steel and independent suspension will make the car more fun to drive than its predecessors.
    Styling of the Dart borrows a lot from the full-size Charger, with the front end having Dodge's trademark crosshair grill and headlights that are angled up over the car’s front fenders. Around back, a full bank of LED taillights and dual exhausts help make the car a Dodge.
    Three engines will be available; a 2.0L inline-four “Tigershark”, a turbocharged 1.4L MultiAir inline-four, and a 2.4L“Tigershark” inline-four. Three transmissions will be available; most likely an six-speed automatic plus a choice of five- and six-speed manuals.
    The Dodge Dart will be built at Chrysler's Assembly n Belvidere, Illinois, which currently assembles the Dodge Caliber, Jeep Compass, and Jeep Patriot.



    Press Release is on Page 2



    Dodge Hits the Mark With the All-new 2013 Dodge Dart Compact Car


    Dodge Dart Blends Alfa Romeo DNA and Dodge’s Passion for Performance, Resulting in a Groundbreaking Car with the Ultimate Blend of Power, Fuel Economy, Handling and Style
    The Dodge brand is back in the U.S. compact sedan segment – in a big way – as the all-new 2013 Dodge Dart will make its world debut at the 2012 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Mich., on Jan. 9, 2012
    Built on a world-class architecture, Dodge Dart offers three technologically advanced, fuel-efficient and powerful engines, including the 1.4L MultiAir® Turbo
    Dodge delivers exceptional craftsmanship with class-leading technology and style
    Auburn Hills, Mich. , Dec 6, 2011 - Dodge redefines performance in the compact car segment with an all-new, state-of-the-art four-door sedan delivering class-leading aerodynamics – the 2013 Dodge Dart.
    With Alfa Romeo DNA and Dodge’s passion for performance at its core, the all-new 2013 Dodge Dart is a thoroughly modern vehicle that’s fuel-efficient, beautifully designed and crafted, agile and brings fun back to driving in the segment.
    Similar to the Dodge Dart of the late 1960s, the 2013 Dart offers a special blend of style, performance and innovation. The Dodge brand leveraged its nearly 100-year history of passion for building high-quality, innovative vehicles that stand apart in performance and style, as well as from its partner Fiat’s global compact car expertise, to develop the all-new Dodge Dart.
    ALFA ROMEO DNA
    The all-new Dart is the first Chrysler Group vehicle based upon a Fiat architecture – adapted from the award-winning Alfa Romeo Giulietta. The Giulietta is renowned for satisfying the most demanding customers in terms of road-holding, agility and safety, with exceptional driving dynamics. The Dart leverages all of these attributes within a lengthened and widened platform delivering segment-leading levels of interior roominess.
    The all-new Compact U.S. Wide (CUSW) architecture underpinning the Dart is a state-of-the-art architecture with an industry-leading 68 percent of the body composed of high-strength steel, resulting in a very strong and rigid structure. Combined with responsive steering, four-wheel independent suspension, and available 18-inch wheels, the Dart brings fun back to driving in the compact car segment.
    UNMISTAKABLE STYLE
    The all-new 2013 Dart marks the Dodge brand’s re-entry into the compact sedan segment, hitting the bulls-eye with a modern, unmistakable Dodge design that builds upon its performance heritage while evoking emotion, efficiency and fluidity of movement.
    Eye-catching exterior proportions are set off from every angle by dynamic lines and curves, along with advanced technology, to deliver class-leading aerodynamic performance. The personality-packed front view is instantly recognizable as an all-new Dodge with its tailored split-crosshair grille, projector headlamps and fog lamps and accentuated fenders. Signature Dodge full-width LED ‘racetrack’ tail lamps and class-exclusive integrated dual exhaust – both inspired by Dodge Charger – accentuate the athletic and muscular stance of this dynamic and passionate new design.
    THREE SOPHISTICATED, FUEL-EFFICIENT & POWERFUL ENGINES
    The 2013 Dodge Dart will be powered by three fuel-efficient, powerful, state-of-the-art four-cylinder engines that add to Dart’s fun-to-drive quotient.
    Drivers can select from a new Tigershark 16-valve 2.0-liter engine, a 16-valve 1.4-liter MultiAir Intercooled Turbo engine, and a new Tigershark 16-valve 2.4-liter MultiAir four cylinder engine. These three engines, combined with three transmission choices, combine to redefine performance by providing the most diverse powertrain lineup in its class.
    MultiAir technology delivers optimum combustion at any speed under all driving conditions by allowing direct and dynamic control of air intake and combustion. The result is up to a 15 percent increase in low engine rpm torque, a 7.5 percent improvement in fuel efficiency and a 10 percent reduction in C02 emissions.
    THE ALL-NEW DART – BUILT IN AMERICA
    The all-new Dodge Dart will be made in America at Chrysler Group’s Belvidere Assembly Plant in Belvidere, Ill. The Company is in the process of investing $600 million dollars to support the production of future products, including the 2013 Dodge Dart. The investment includes the construction of a 638,000-square-foot body shop, as well as the installation of new machinery, tooling and material handling equipment. Work on the expansion began in the summer of 2010 and will be completed this year.


    Drew Dowdell

    Ram tows the benchmark higher with 1,000 lb-ft of torque.

    At the North American Auto Show in Detroit, Ram released the details for the 2019  Ram HD Trucks.  Ram jumps to the top of the class with a new 35,100 max tow rating and a 7,680 lbs. payload, the highest capacity for any diesel or gasoline pickup.
     
    The Ram HD boasts an optional all-new 6.7 liter 6-cylinder Cummins Turbodiesel featuring 1000 lb-ft of torque at just  1,800 rpm. Horsepower is rated 400 hp at 2,800 rpm. A second variant of the Cummins Turbo Diesel also gets a performance boost with 370 horsepower @ 2,800 rpm and 850 lb.-ft. of torque @ 1,700 rpm. The standard engine on the Ram HD is 6.4 liter Hemi V8 delivering 410 hp at 5,600 rpm and 429 lb.-ft. of torque @ 4,000 rpm. Ram 3500 Heavy Duty models equipped with the 1,000 lb.-ft. high output Cummins 6.7-liter Turbo Diesel employ the Aisin AS69RC electronically controlled six-speed automatic , while Ram HDs powered by the standard output Cummins 6.7-liter Turbo Diesel are equipped with a significantly upgraded version of the 68RFE six-speed automatic transmission. RAM HDs powered by the Hemi V8 get a TorqueFlite 8HP75 eight-speed automatic.
    2019 Ram Power Wagon is the most capable production off-road truck in the industry. The Power Wagon features a unique suspension, factory suspension lift, locking front and rear differentials, disconnecting sway bar and a 12,000-lb. winch. New to the Power Wagon is a 360 camera, which includes forward-view camera gridlines to help navigate obstacles. An all-new and integrated front-mounted WARN Zeon-12 winch features a unique fairlead and fairlead retainer with a new synthetic line that cannot kink, does not fray and is more maneuverable. The new line also cuts weight by 28 lbs. A Power Wagon content package continues to be available on Tradesman, which includes all the off-road equipment but keeps the Tradesman design elements.
    For 2019, all-new features, technology and premium materials help the redesigned Ram Heavy Duty continue its interior leadership with quality, technology and luxury. Each trim level is uniquely characterized to reflect individual identity.
     
    The new instrument panel combines a strong, structurally interlocking appearance, pushing the central controls up and toward the driver, improving overall reachability of system controls. The 2019 Ram Heavy Duty features the Uconnect 4C NAV on a 12-inch fully configurable touchscreen, which can display one application, such as the navigation map, across the whole 12-inch screen, or can be divided in half, operating two different applications at once. Redundant HVAC controls and a new enhanced-ergonomic switch bank deliver improved feedback and appearance.
     
    The new 2019 Ram Heavy Duty features an available 7-inch, full-color, 3D animation-capable driver information display, with reconfigurable function that enables Ram truck drivers to personalize information inside the instrument cluster. The display is designed to visually communicate information, using graphics and text, quickly and easily.
     
    Across all trim levels, the 2019 Ram Heavy Duty features push-button start and a redesigned rotary e-shifter dial (HEMI V8 only). The new shifter area also intelligently groups new feature buttons, including Hill Descent Control, axle lock and transfer case controls, when equipped.
     
    An active noise cancellation system and acoustic glass reduce ambient cabin sounds by nearly 10 db – the quietest Ram Heavy Duty ever. The new HVAC system features 30 percent more air flow at lower noise levels, including larger front defroster vents for better performance. All-new in-duct electric heating elements on diesel models help speed cabin warmup on cold days, and larger system controls and new larger panel ducts work better with gloved hands.
     
    With up to 258 liters of interior storage volume on the exclusive Mega Cab including two bins behind the rear seats, the 2019 Ram Heavy Duty offers more than 120-percent additional storage capacity versus the closest competitor. A reimagined center console is a usable, complex piece of art with more than 12 different storage combinations. Up from 19.7 to 22.6 liters, the console includes a wider docking area with optional wireless charging, which can hold a small tablet or smartphone. A three-position sliding cup-holder tray can be stowed under the center armrest to reveal a deep storage tub designed to hold a 15-inch laptop
     
    To keep devices charged, five USB ports assist in the center console type-C ports for faster communication and charging. Up to three 115-volt household plugs are available (three-prong). One in the first row and one in the second row. All outlets now handle up to 400 watts to charge or power tools quickly.
    The 2019 Ram Heavy Duty is built at the Saltillo Truck Assembly Plant in Coahuila, Mexico.
     
     

    Drew Dowdell
    Buick today introduced their new compact crossover due to be on sale in 12 - 13 months. The Encore comes standard with a 1.4 liter turbo charged 4-cylinder engine good for 140 horsepower and 148 ft-lb of torque. The standard 6-speed auto has a steep first gear and and a tall final gear to allow for a wide spread of gear ratios. The wider spread gears allow for better around town acceleration while still providing fuel efficient highway cruising. Front wheel drive is standard with all wheel drive optional.
    On the inside, it is all Buick with lots of soft touch materials and Buick's quiet tuning. On the Encore, QuietTuning gets a boost with active noise cancellation. The system uses 3 ceiling mounted microphones attached to the Encore's audio system to direct the sub-woofer to send out noise cancellation sound pulses.
    Encore rides on the same Gama platform that underpins the Chevrolet Sonic. The Sonic recently achieved a 5 star crash test rating from the NHTSA, so we expect the Encore will match that.
    After sitting in the Encore, I was surprised how roomy it feels inside for such a compact vehicle outside. If feels roomier than both the Juke and Clubman, two compact SUVs I expect might be cross shopped with the I found that with the front seat adjusted for my 5 foot 10 inch frame, I was still able to sit very comfortably in the rear seat with more than enough knee room. Additionally, none of the pictures, the press picture or my own, do the car justice. Quiet, comfortable, and fuel efficient, the Encore isn't a car for gearheads, but it will be perfect for their wives. I think that marketed correctly, Buick could have a big hit on their hands.

    Press release on page 2

    2013 Buick Encore Takes the Stage



    All-new luxury crossover is versatile, efficient and continues brand’s growth


    DETROIT – Buick today introduced the all-new 2013 Encore – a luxury small crossover that delivers Buick’s signature style, interior acoustic refinement and collection of luxury amenities in a maneuverable, versatile and efficient package.
    The Encore is on display at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit through Jan. 22, and goes on sale in early 2013.
    “Buick Encore is a great-looking, smart choice for those who want luxury crossover amenities in a more maneuverable and agile vehicle,” said Tony DiSalle, U.S. vice president of Buick Marketing. “It represents a luxury alternative for a new audience of Buick customers, and delivers features and flexibility not typically found in vehicles of its size today.”
    Buick models continue to gain in popularity, with two consecutive years of higher retail sales. The Encore joins Verano – Buick’s third all-new sedan in three years – to round out the brand’s lineup and continues the momentum established by the Enclave crossover almost five years ago.
    With room for five and up to 48.4 cubic feet (1,372 liters) of storage space with the rear seat folded, the Encore offers substantial cargo capacity along with the confident, higher driving position, all-wheel-drive capability and contemporary styling of a crossover. In fact, its cargo space compares favorably against similar-sized international competitors:

    Rear Seat in Place



    Rear Seat Folded



    Buick Encore



    18.8 cu. ft. / 533 liters



    48.4 cu. ft. / 1,372 liters



    BMW X1



    16.9 cu. ft. / 480 liters



    47.4 cu. ft. / 1,350 liters



    Audi Q3



    16.2 cu. ft. / 460 liters



    48.2 cu. ft. / 1,365 liters


    Additional features include 10 standard air bags and an Ecotec 1.4L turbo four-cylinder/six-speed automatic powertrain, along with standard and available technologies such as Buick’s voice-activated IntelliLink – which uses Bluetooth or a USB to connect the driver’s smartphone to a high-resolution, full-color seven-inch LCD display radio.
    And because it’s a Buick, QuietTuning is standard on the Encore, which also features Buick’s first use of active noise cancellation technology.
    Contemporary design offers versatile spaciousness
    In keeping with the global design language that has come to symbolize the brand, the Encore’s sculpted and elegant styling traits – including sweeping character lines – make it instantly identifiable as a contemporary Buick. Signature cues include a waterfall grille, chrome accents and surrounds, portholes on the hood and painted lower panels, similar to the Enclave.
    “The Encore brings Buick’s timeless, sculptural design to the crossover segment in a way that blends elegance, efficiency and utility,” said David Lyon, executive director of design. “There’s confidence in its athletic stance and elemental beauty in its rich details.”
    Blue-accented projector-beam headlamps and detailed taillamps enhance the premium appearance; and 18-inch, five-spoke painted aluminum wheels are standard. Seven-spoke chrome wheels are available.
    Inside, the Encore’s organic styling carries over to a flowing instrument panel that wraps naturally into the door panels. A prominent central instrument panel houses the large, full-color, seven-inch LCD display for the IntelliLink voice-activated radio system. It also features displays for the SiriusXM satellite radio, as well as available navigation and rear camera systems.
    A contemporary mix of dark and light tones distinguishes the cabin, which is accented with ice blue ambient lighting, select use of bright trim and wood-grain trim. Premium seats featuring high-density foam for greater comfort on long drives are trimmed with either a contemporary cloth/leatherette motif or available leather. Heated front seats and a heated steering wheel are available. The rear seat features a fold-down armrest with cup holders.
    More of the Encore’s comfort and luxury features – standard and available – include:
    Remote vehicle start
    Dual-zone automatic climate control
    Rainsense wipers
    Bose premium sound system
    Heated, leather-wrapped steering wheel with audio controls
    Six-way, power-adjustable driver’s seat with power lumbar adjustment and driver memory.

    Encore also features plenty of storage capacity and storage compartments. It offers 18.8 cubic feet (533 liters) of storage behind the split-folding rear seat and 48.4 cubic feet (1,372 liters) with the rear seat folded. With the rear seat in place, there’s room for at least six full grocery bags and with the rear seat folded, there’s room for golf clubs and overnight bags for a weekend getaway. Even the front passenger seat folds flat to extend the cargo length and accommodate long items that would not normally fit in a vehicle of this size.
    Nine exterior colors and three interior color combinations will be offered.
    QuietTuning gets ‘active’
    QuietTuning is the process of defining Buick quality, sound and vibration characteristics and designing and refining the vehicle following a three-point strategy of reducing sounds at their source, blocking sounds from entering the cabin and absorbing any remaining sounds.
    For the Encore, specific content was applied to achieve 40 sound benchmarks for refinement, including Buick’s first application of active noise cancellation. With it, ceiling-mounted microphones detect engine noise, the frequencies of which are processed by a computer that directs counteracting sound waves through the audio system’s speakers and subwoofer.
    Additional standard QuietTuning features include:
    Acoustically treated headliner with a tuned gap between it and the high-strength-steel roof panel
    Sound-absorbing materials used in the cabin, under the hood and in the wheel house liners
    HydraMatic 6T40 six-speed transmission with neutral gear disengagement
    Quiet-tuned 18-inch Continental tires
    Aero-optimized outside mirrors
    Ultra-quiet engine alternator
    Acoustic-laminated windshield and thicker 5mm side window glass
    Foam baffle insulation at the opening of body structure cavities.

    ‘One-tire’ philosophy sharpens ride and handling characteristics
    The new Encore is built on a global small-crossover platform and engineered with a “one-tire” philosophy. Everything is optimized around a single 18-inch tire specification, designed for more precise suspension tuning, driving refinement, quietness and a feeling of control.
    The Encore’s 100.6-inch (2,555 mm) wheelbase and wide stance – 60.6-inch (1,540 mm) front and rear tracks – contribute to a more confident-feeling driving experience, while a strong structure enables greater suspension precision and a quieter ride. Tuned engine, including two hydraulic mounts, are tailored to the engine’s inherent torque axis to disrupt the transmission of vibration and noise. This configuration also helps control the transfer of momentum, resulting in improved dynamic balance.
    A MacPherson strut front suspension is used with coil springs, a large stabilizer bar and side-load-compensated front strut modules. The rear suspension incorporates a compound crank (torsion beam) design, with a double-wall, tubular V-shape beam profile with gas-charged twin-tube shocks. It combines all the advantages of a conventional torsion beam axle, including minimal space requirements, with low weight and consistent camber control. Urethane spring isolators are used to dampen noise.
    The Encore also features a column-mounted, variable-effort electric power steering system. It contributes to a 36.7-foot (11.2 meters) turning diameter, while also saving fuel compared to an engine-driven power steering pump.
    Safety technology helps protect occupants
    Encore is designed with technologies – including radar-based features – to help avoid crashes and protect occupants in case one occurs. Technologies that help avoid them include:
    Standard StabiliTrak electronic stability control
    Four-wheel disc brakes with ABS and electronic brake force distribution
    Cornering brake control and brake assist
    Available all-wheel-drive system that seamlessly shifts power to the rear wheels when required for better traction and handling
    Available forward collision alert and lane departure warning
    Available front and rear park assist
    Available rear vision camera.

    When it comes to occupant protection, the Encore’s body structure forms a protective cage around the passenger compartment. Sixty-three percent of the underbody structure is comprised of high-strength steels, while 57 percent of the upper body uses high-strength steels, including ultra-high-strength steel. That protection is complemented with 10 standard air bags, which include:
    Driver and front passenger frontal air bags
    Driver and front passenger knee air bags
    Front and rear thorax air bags (all outboard positions)
    Side curtain air bags for front and rear outboard passengers.

    Encore’s suite of safety features is rounded out with exclusive OnStar technology, which includes the Advanced Crash Response System, emergency assistance and more.
    Ecotec turbo engine drives efficiency
    The Buick Encore is powered by an efficient, power-dense Ecotec 1.4L turbocharged four-cylinder engine and six-speed automatic transmission. It generates an estimated 140 horsepower (103 kW) and 148 lb.-ft. of torque (200 Nm) between 1,850 rpm and 4,900 rpm. The wide rpm range for the maximum torque – a specific trait of turbocharged engines – helps it deliver a better driving experience and performance.
    The 1.4L’s turbocharger is integrated within the exhaust manifold, for reduced weight and greater packaging flexibility. A reinforced crankshaft and forged connecting rods deliver additional strength to support the engine’s pressurized power and torque over a wide rpm band.
    Several of the engine’s features contribute to the Encore’s overall fuel efficiency, including:
    A high-efficiency alternator
    Regulated voltage control
    Electronically controlled returnless fuel system
    Deceleration fuel cut-off.

    They complement other vehicle-wide systems and components that also help improve efficiency, including low-rolling-resistance tires, electric power steering, neutral idle feature and optimized aerodynamics.
    A Hydra-Matic 6T40 six-speed automatic transmission backs the Ecotec 1.4L turbo engine. It is part of a family of six-speed front and all-wheel drive transaxles developed for small cars and crossovers. It has a unique design, with the planetary gearsets positioned on the same axis as the engine crankshaft centerline, making the entire powertrain unit shorter fore-to-aft. This design enables a shorter overall vehicle length, increased interior space, enhanced safety crush zones and lower weight.
    The Hydra-Matic 6T40 offers a “steep” first gear and a “tall” overdrive top gear to achieve a wide ratio spread of 6.14:1. This allows the Encore to achieve robust acceleration, as well as fuel efficiency and lower engine noise at highway cruising speeds. A neutral-gear disengagement feature helps enhance smoothness and efficiency.
    The Buick Encore will begin arriving at U.S. Buick dealerships in the first quarter of 2013.

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
    December 14, 2011
    Next month's Detroit Auto Show is becoming more interesting as the days go by, with the new Dodge Dart, Mercedes-Benz SL, Cadillac ATS, Honda Accord, three Acuras, and now the Buick Encore.
    Buick released their first teaser shot of the new small crossover this afternoon. From what the picture shows the Encore will carry many Buick design trademarks, including a chrome waterfall grille, porthole vents and almond-shaped headlights with xenon high-intensity-discharge headlights with a blueish hue.
    Buick has also revealed the Encore will feature "QuietTuning" technology and will offer a similar feature and options packages to current Buick vehicles.

    Drew Dowdell

    BMW's little new city crossover.

    BMW released the details and pictures of the 2018 BMW X2 back in October, but the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit is where the official world debut will happen. 
    The 2018 BMW X2 (officially named X2 xDrive28i) is a sportier take on the company's existing X1 crossover.  Unlike the X3/X4 and X5/X6 pairs, the X2 does not get a more coupe-like profile, keeping things more upright like a standard crossover.  Ostensibly, this is to keep headroom usable on an already snug vehicle, overall however, the X2 roof is 2.8 inches lower and 3.2 inches shorter than the X1.
    The X2 is powered by an updated version of BMW's 228 horsepower 2.0 liter 4-cylinder. It is capable of 258 lb-ft of torque from 1,450 - 4,500 rpm. Power is routed to all four wheels via an 8-speed automatic. No manual transmission is being offered at this time.  The all-wheel drive system runs in front-wheel drive mode most of the time. When slip is detected an electronic clutch engages the rear wheels. 
    Along with the X1, the BMW X2 shares a platform with the BMW 1-series sold only in China and 2-series sold in Europe, and the Mini Countryman and Clubman. 
    The 2018 X2 xDrive28i will arrive in dealerships in spring of 2018.  The official unveil is scheduled for 9:35 am on January 15th at Cobo Center, Detroit.
    Click here to follow all 2018 Detroit Auto Show News.
    Click here to follow BMW News.
     
     

    Drew Dowdell

    Ford is getting back into the mid-size truck game.

    Ford released information and pictures of the 2019 Ford Ranger today ahead of the start of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
    The 2019 Ranger is now a mid-size truck, growing up substantially from the rather compact Ranger that went out of production in 2011. The new Ranger will be equipped with Ford's 2.3 liter Ecoboost 4-cylinder and a 10-speed automatic transmission mounted on a high-strength steel frame.  An FX4 package will add skid plates, upgraded tires, off-road shocks, and some additional computer controlled terrain management systems.
    Three trim levels will be offered in SuperCab or SuperCrew Cab configurations.  In those cabs will be an available 8 inch touch screen when equipped with SYNC3 system, while the information cluster has two LCD screens for driver information.  SYNC3 includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, Ford+Alexa, and optional navigation. 
     The Ranger will share a platform with the forthcoming Ford Bronco and both are expected to be built in Ford's plant in Wayne Michigan. 
    Ford Press Release on Page 2
    Click here to follow all 2018 Detroit Auto Show News
    Click here to follow all Ford News
    An American Favorite Reinvented: New Ford Ranger Brings Built Ford Tough Innovation to U.S. Midsize Truck Segment • Built Ford Tough: Ford answers the call from truck customers looking for an affordable, rugged, and maneuverable midsize pickup that’s Built Ford Tough; torture-tested alongside Ford F-150 trucks, Ranger quality starts with a rugged high-strength steel frame backbone, proven Ford-built 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine and class-exclusive 10-speed automatic transmission • Ready for adventure with innovative technology: New features make driving easier and more fun, both on- and off-road; available FX4 Off-Road Package adds protective skid plates, upgraded tires, off-road-tuned shocks and suspension, while Terrain Management System™ and Trail Control™ help navigate challenging conditions; a suite of innovative technologies includes standard Automatic Emergency Braking to help avoid collisions • Strong new choice for midsize truck fans: Ranger brings American truck lovers an all-new choice; production begins late this year at Ford’s Michigan Assembly Plant as the U.S. industry sees continued growth in midsize pickups DETROIT, Jan. 14, 2018 – Ford today reveals the all-new 2019 Ford Ranger for North America, bringing midsize truck fans a new choice from America’s truck sales leader – one that’s engineered Built Ford Tough and packed with driver-assist technologies to make driving easier whether on- or off-road. Production begins late this year at Ford’s Michigan Assembly Plant as customer demand is growing for midsize trucks. U.S. sales are up 83 percent since 2014 as a new generation of midsize truck buyers seek more maneuverable, fuel-efficient pickups. The 2019 Ford Ranger answers the call with an all-new midsize pickup featuring a new exterior design, chassis and powertrain developed specifically for North American truck customers. Powerful and strong, with a high-strength steel frame, Ranger is equipped with a proven 2.3-liter EcoBoost® engine mated to the only 10-speed automatic transmission in the segment. “Ranger has always held a special place in the hearts of truck fans,” said Hau Thai-Tang, Ford executive vice president, Product Development and Purchasing. “The all-new Ranger is designed for today’s midsize truck buyer, delivering even more utility, capability and technology for those who blend city living with more off-the-grid adventures on weekends.” Ranger comes in entry-level XL, mid-level XLT and high-level Lariat trim series with available Chrome and Sport appearance and FX Off-Road packages, and in SuperCab or SuperCrew cab configurations. Built Ford Tough Built Ford Tough is engineered in Ranger’s DNA – from its high-strength steel frame backbone to its frame-mounted steel front and rear bumpers. Ford engineers put Ranger through the same torture testing as the legendary F-150 goes through. Even its design is tough. Ranger’s muscular body features a high beltline that emphasizes strength, while a raked grille and windshield provide an athletic appearance – designed to aid in aerodynamics and reduce wind noise. Short overhangs are functional off-road for clearing obstacles. From the rear, the Ranger nameplate stamped in the tailgate conveys strength, and the tailgate itself is designed to handle people and cargo. A rugged steel bumper with an available integrated trailer hitch receiver helps make towing campers, ATVs or watercraft a breeze. Inside, Ranger blends comfort and functionality with room for up to five people, their gear and accessories. A center stack includes an 8-inch touch screen for the available SYNC® 3 system, while the instrument cluster features dual LCD productivity screens for real-time vehicle, navigation and audio information. Ranger’s twin-power dome hood houses its 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine designed for efficiency and capability thanks to direct fuel injection, a twin-scroll turbocharger and 16-valve design. For added durability, the engine features a forged-steel crankshaft and connecting rods, and chain-driven dual overhead cams. “Ranger’s proven 2.3-liter EcoBoost provides a torque target on par with competing V6 engines, but with the efficiency of a four-cylinder,” said Thai-Tang. “When you pair that with its 10-speed transmission, you’ve got one of the most versatile, powerful and efficient powertrains in the segment.” Adventure-ready Ranger is designed for a new generation of midsize truck customers who head off-road to recharge. Ranger prioritizes ground clearance to help climb over off-road obstacles. The FX4 Off-Road Package provides additional trail capability with off-road-tuned shocks, all-terrain tires, a framemounted heavy-gauge steel front bash plate, frame-mounted skid plates and FX4 badging. To give customers a great all-terrain driving experience, Ranger’s FX4 Off-Road Package features an innovative Terrain Management System™ similar to the F-150 Raptor’s. It includes four distinct drive modes – normal; grass, gravel and snow; mud and ruts; and sand. The system can shift on the fly to automatically change throttle responsiveness, transmission gearing and vehicle controls to tailor traction, driveability and performance to any given terrain or weather condition. The FX4 Off-Road Package introduces Ford’s all-new Trail Control™ technology. Like cruise control for the highway but designed for low-speed, rugged terrain, Trail Control takes over acceleration and braking – sending power and braking to each individual wheel to allow drivers to focus on steering along the course. Power is distributed through Dana® AdvanTEK® independent front and solid rear axles on both 2WD and 4WD models with an available electronic-locking rear axle (standard on FX2 and FX4) for increased all-terrain traction. Ranger four-wheel-drive versions feature 2-high, 4-high and 4-low. Innovative technology Ranger incorporates smart driver-assist, passenger convenience and connectivity technologies. Advanced driver-assist technologies include standard Automatic Emergency Braking, while Lane Keeping Assist, Lane Departure Warning, a Reverse Sensing System and class-exclusive Blind Spot Information System with trailer coverage are standard on XLT and Lariat trim levels. Additional driver-assist technologies standard on Lariat include Pedestrian Detection and Adaptive Cruise Control. Available SYNC® 3 features Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, Ford+Alexa personal assistant functionality and optional navigation. An available FordPass™ Connect 4G LTE modem provides Wi-Fi access for up to 10 devices. Available AC power outlets allow for charging of laptops and USB outlets provide more options for passengers to connect. Available B&O PLAY premium audio is specially tuned for the Ranger cab to deliver a rich and engaging listening experience. Additional features include optional LED headlamps and taillamps. Optional exterior lighting includes puddle lamps and lighting for the cargo bed,

    William Maley

    Honda Pickup, Take 2!

    Back from a short hiatus, the Honda Ridgeline made its debut at the Detroit Auto Show this afternoon.
     
    Compared to the last Ridgeline, the new model looks more truck-ish. The front end boasts a more butch version of the Pilot's grille and larger headlights. The side profile is very Pilot aside from the top half of the rear cut off.
     
    The bed is slightly larger than the previous Ridgeline with measurements of five feet wide and five feet, four inches long. Yes, the in-bed trunk is still here complete with drain plug. Also, the tailgate can fold down or swing out.
     
    Power comes from a 3.5L V6 and is paired with a six-speed automatic. Oddly, Honda didn't give out any power figures for the V6. But if this is the same engine as the Pilot, so it would not be surprising if the Ridgeline comes with 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. Front-wheel drive is standard, while all-wheel drive with Honda's i-VTM4™ torque vectoring AWD technology is optional.
     
    Honda will begin sales of the Ridgeline sometime in the first half of 2016.
     
    Source: Honda
     

     
    You can follow all of our reports from the 2016 Detroit Auto Show here.
     
    Press Release is on Page 2


     
    All-New 2017 Honda Ridgeline Pickup Truck Makes World Debut at 2016 North American International Auto Show
    Jan 11, 2016 - DETROIT
    2017 Ridgeline brings Honda innovation in technology, design and packaging to the midsize pickup truck market All-new Ridgeline delivers superior driving dynamics in combination with the largest interior space and most versatile bed in a midsize 4-door pickup Honda-exclusive features including In-Bed Trunk®, dual-action tailgate and the industry's first in-bed audio system make Ridgeline the ultimate tailgating vehicle

    Honda today unveiled the all-new 2017 Ridgeline truck at the North American International Auto Show, once again challenging conventional thinking in the pickup truck market with Honda-exclusive features, design and technology that help Ridgeline set new benchmarks for versatility, capability and comfort in a midsize pickup.
    "We are bringing our unique technology and original thinking to the market in a new and challenging concept for a Honda pickup," said John Mendel, executive vice president of American Honda Motor Co., Inc. "We think we've got a better idea, a truck that uses its unibody construction and Honda packaging magic to deliver more of the things that many of today's truck customers want and need with none of the things they don't."
     
    Designed, developed and manufactured in America, the new Ridgeline will launch in the first half of 2016 with a combination of features and capabilities unlike anything else on the market today, including:
    Superior on-road performance – with the segment's best handling, ride quality, cabin quietness and all-weather traction capabilities – courtesy of its unibody construction, sophisticated chassis, and available i-VTM4™ torque-vectoring AWD system Class-leading space – with the largest and most versatile cabin and the only 4-foot-wide flat bed space in the midsize pickup segment, along with payload capacity rivaling top competitors Innovative and class-exclusive features, including an In-Bed Trunk™, dual-action tailgate and the industry's first in-bed audio system – making Ridgeline the ultimate tailgating vehicle Targeted top-in-class acceleration, EPA fuel economy ratings and third-party collision safety ratings, and featuring Honda's next-generation ACE™ body structure and available Honda Sensing™ suite of safety and driver-assist technologies Leading edge connectivity with 8-inch Display Audio featuring Apple Car Play® and Android Auto™ compatibility

    Advanced Chassis, Powertrain and All-Wheel-Drive
    The new Ridgeline is based on Honda's Global Light Truck platform with its rigid yet lightweight unibody construction, next-generation ACE™ body structure and sophisticated, fully independent suspension, delivering a higher level of ride and handling refinement than conventional body-on-frame designs. The Ridgeline will be powered by a 3.5-liter, direct-injected i-VTEC™ V-6 engine mated to a 6-speed automatic transmission, providing top-in-class powertrain refinement and targeting best-in-class acceleration performance and segment-leading EPA fuel economy ratings.
     
    The Ridgeline also will be available for the first time in both front-wheel and all-wheel-drive configurations. All-wheel-drive models will utilize Honda's i-VTM4™ torque vectoring AWD technology, featuring Intelligent Terrain Management with Normal, Sand, Snow and Mud modes, providing robust medium-duty off-road and towing capability with superior on-road, all-weather handling, traction and performance.
     
    Sophisticated, Versatile and Spacious Cabin
    Inside, the Ridgeline boasts the largest, most versatile and sophisticated cabin in a midsize 4-door pickup, featuring high-grade materials and finishes, available leather trim and all the latest technologies that Honda has to offer, including tri-zone climate control, push button start, a full-color TFT center meter and available 8-inch Display Audio touchscreen with Apple Car Play and Android Auto compatibility.
     
    The Ridgeline's 60/40-split and folding second-row seat provides the ultimate versatility for people- and cargo-hauling utility. With the seats folded down, the Ridgeline will comfortably carry up to five people while still accommodating long items, like a set of golf clubs, under the rear seat. Folding up one or both sides of the 60/40-split seat bottom opens up the back to carry tall and bulky items.
     
    A Bed Like No Other
    The Ridgeline bed offers pickup users unmatched versatility in a midsize 4-door pickup. At 5' wide and 5'4" long (5.4 inches wider and 4 inches longer than the previous generation Ridgeline), the 2017 Honda Ridgeline has the only 4-foot wide flat bed space (with 48 inches between the rear wheel arches) in the midsize pickup class, allowing for flat hauling of items like plywood sheeting or drywall. The Ridgeline will also offer payload capacity rivaling top competitors, approaching 1,600 pounds, with final specifications to be released closer to launch.
     
    The composite, UV-stabilized and scratch-resistant bed also boasts a number of available Honda-exclusive features that add to its incredible versatility, including an In-Bed Trunk™, dual-action tailgate, available 400-watt AC power inverter and the industry's first in-bed audio system.
     
    The Ridgeline's standard, lockable In-Bed Trunk provides secure storage space with no compromise to bed utility and now features a fully flat floor while still including a drain plug for easier cleaning and evacuation of water from the trunk. The dual action tailgate is hinged both at the bottom and along its left side, opening down or to the side, which enables easier loading and unloading of heavy and bulky items without having to reach over the open tailgate. The bed also features eight 350-pound tie down cleats and an available 400-watt power inverter, located behind an access panel in the right bed wall, with the capacity to recharge power tools or energize a tailgate blender or flat screen TV.
     
    A first for any pickup, the new in-bed audio system, together with the In-Bed Trunk and available 400-watt power inverter, makes Ridgeline the ultimate tailgating vehicle. The new in-bed audio system utilizes six exciters located inside the bed walls, in place of conventional speakers, pumping out sound from the Ridgeline's audio head unit, with up to 540 watts of power.
     
    Top-Level Safety Performance
    Featuring Honda's next-generation ACE™ body structure, advanced airbag systems and available Honda Sensing™ suite of safety and driver-assist technologies, the new Ridgeline will target the highest available collision safety ratings – an NCAP 5-star Overall Vehicle Score from the NHTSA and a TOP SAFETY PICK+ rating from the IIHS. Honda Sensing™ technologies available on the 2017 Ridgeline include Lane Departure Warning (LDW), Collision Mitigation Braking System™ (CMBS™), Forward Collision Warning (FCW), Road Departure Mitigation (RDM) and Lane Keeping Assist (LKAS). All Ridgeline models will feature a multi-angle rearview camera as standard equipment and upper trims will be available with either Honda LaneWatch™ or Blind Spot Information system.
     
    Ridgeline Development and Manufacturing
    Like the first generation Honda Ridgeline, the all-new 2017 Ridgeline was designed and developed by Honda R&D Americas and will be produced by Honda Manufacturing of Alabama in Lincoln, Alabama.

    William Maley

    That face!

    Toyota unveiled a redesigned Avalon today at the Detroit Auto Show. The previous-generation marked a turning point for the big sedan as Toyota added a bit more style and worked on improving the handling characteristics. The new model hopes to improve on both.
    The new Avalon is very polarizing in terms of its design, especially in the front with a large grille featuring slats or a mesh insert, and narrow headlights. The body features a number of creases and a coupe-like roofline. Overall, the new Avalon is larger - length grows by 0.7 inches, width by 0.8 inches, and the wheelbase by 2 inches. Some of the increase is due to Toyota moving the Avalon to their TGNA modular platform - the same one that underpins the Camry and Prius.
    Moving inside, Toyota is going with a minimalist approach with a clean dash layout and minimal brightwork. A new 9-inch screen comes with the latest version of Toyota's Entune and (finally) Apple CarPlay integration. Those wanting Android Auto are out of luck, but hopefully, Toyota will add that down the road. Other tech features include a Wi-Fi hotspot, JBL 7.1-channel audio system, QI wireless charging, and Amazon Alexa integration. 
    Power will come from two different powertrains, an updated 3.5L V6 and a brand new hybrid system with a 2.5L four-cylinder. Toyota isn't spilling numbers, but it would be safe to assume it would be similar to the Camry.
    3.5L V6: 301 Horsepower, 267 Pound-feet of Torque
    Hybrid: 208 Horsepower (Total Output)
    The V6 will come paired with an eight-speed automatic, while the hybrid makes do with a CVT.
    Under the Avalon's skin, Toyota has fitted a new multi-link rear suspension setup with thicker stabilizer bars and revised springs to improve handling. The top-line Touring gets an adaptive suspension.
    For safety, the Avalon comes standard with a number of active safety features including adaptive cruise control, automatic high beams, blind spot monitoring,  lane departure warning with steering assist, and a pre-collision system with pedestrian detection.
    The 2019 Toyota Avalon arrives at dealers later this spring.
    Source: Toyota 
    Press Release is on Page 2


    Attainable Premium, Actualized: All-New 2019 Toyota Avalon Beams Effortless Sophistication, Style, and Exhilaration at the 2018 North American International Auto Show
    Designed and Assembled in the U.S.A., Five Generations Strong New V6 and Toyota Hybrid System Powertrains Offering More Power and MPG New TNGA K Sedan Platform with Multi-Link Rear Suspension and Available Toyota-First Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) Standard Entune 3.0 with WiFi Hotspot, Qi Wireless Charging, Toyota Remote Connect with Smartwatch and Amazon Alexa Connectivity, and Apple CarPlay Standard Toyota Safety Sense P (TSS-P) On Sale in Late Spring 2018 DETROIT, January 15, 2018 – The roads of Avalon, the mystical paradise that inspired Toyota’s flagship nameplate, have likely never seen a mid-premium sedan like this. Safe to say, neither has the North American International Auto Show. Until now.  
     
    Underpinned by a Toyota New Global Architecture (TNGA) platform, and powered by a fuel-efficient 3.5-liter V6 or Toyota Hybrid System (THS II) powertrain, the 2019 Toyota Avalon embodies consumers’ overarching desire for high-caliber, design-centric, technologically-savvy modes of attainable, premium transportation.
     
    To its menu, Avalon mixes a bevy of Toyota-firsts such as standard Apple CarPlay and Dynamic Auxiliary Turn Signals, available authentic Yamaha wood and aluminum cabin accents, and Engine Sound Enhancement. In addition, drivers will appreciate the standard passive and active safety benefits through Toyota Safety Sense P (TSS-P), as well as athletic handling thanks to its available Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS), also a Toyota first, that, quite positively, has Avalon out-performing its peers.
     
    Bar, you’ve just been raised.
     
    Flagship Makeover
     
    For its fifth generation, Avalon received an all-encompassing makeover by Toyota’s U.S.-based design, engineering, and manufacturing entities at Calty Design Research Inc. (Calty) in Ann Arbor, Michigan; Toyota Motor North America Research and Development (TMNA R&D) in Saline, Michigan; and Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Kentucky, Inc. (TMMK) in Georgetown, Kentucky, respectively. Spearheaded by Chief Engineer, Randy Stephens, and Calty President, Kevin Hunter, the brain trust masterminded an Avalon that represents multilateral progressiveness – for itself, its diverse group of drivers, and, for Toyota.
     
    The teams minded two keywords throughout their development paradigm: Authenticity and Exhilaration. Both were applied in every area of Avalon’s sophisticated essence, and throughout the four available grades: the athletic XSE (all-new) and Touring, as well as the more opulent XLE and Limited. Hybrid grades include XLE, Limited, and XSE.
     
    Hello, Technical Beauty
     
    A wealth of Calty signature elements cocoons Avalon’s long, low-slung TNGA musculature. Its expressive looks diligently reflect the mixture of all-encompassing, performance-focused personality, the invigorating driver experience, and a premium, spacious image.
     
    A philosophy of Technical Beauty permeates Avalon’s body lines and cabin landscapes. Technical, which aligns with Authenticity, represents purpose and performance – tangible elements of the sedan’s style. Beauty, which aligns with Exhilaration, represents onlookers’ emotional reaction to Avalon’s taut lines and sleek silhouette.
     
    Because of its adaptable TNGA core, the Calty team penned Avalon’s exterior to be longer, lower, and wider than before. Unique, never-before-accomplished stamping methods also aided in the deep draw panels that express distinguishable sculpted forms. Complex surfaces could now be shaped, like at Avalon’s door handles that coincide with its profile’s bold character line. A distinct, carved lower rocker panel behind the front wheels visually exemplifies the benefits of TNGA.
     
    Avalon’s dimensions echo the seductive physiques of high-dollar premium vehicles. Its cabin, however, keeps its characteristic low-profile heritage by extending the rear cabin farther by another 7 inches, and elongating side quarter glass and downward tapered C-Pillar by 2.2 inches. To finalize the ingenious profile, engineers and designers implemented a 0.31-inch radius corner – the tightest ever for Toyota – fore of the steep pillar.
     
    Avalon’s various height measurements have been trimmed: overall (by 1 in. to 56.5 in.), cowl (by 1.2 in.), and rear deck (by 0.8 in.). So too have front and rear overhangs (down 0.4 in. and 1.0 in., respectively). Along with its wider front (up 0.4 in.) and rear (up 1.5 in.) tracks, width (up 0.8 in. to 72.8 in.), and wheelbase (up 2.0 in.), Avalon’s premium aura and sporty stature are further emphasized.
     
    Nowhere is Toyota’s “Under Priority” brand identity (a direction that prioritizes aerodynamic efficiency, cooling, and pedestrian protection) more clear than at Avalon’s stunning face. Available slim all-LED projector headlights simultaneously speak to its sportiness and elegance. They’re but a piece of the façade’s compelling story, though, that depicts the intersection of three-dimensional surfaces and assorted functions – the aluminum hood’s longitudinal lines and lightweight build; the wide, modern grilles built for air-slicing sleekness; tangential vents at its lower portion crafted for the effective direction of passing air across the front tires and along Avalon’s buff flanks. The chiseled doors achieve a deeper character line thanks to TNGA prototype stamping applied at TMMK.
     
    Simple horizontal character lines slice across the backside, at the top, center, and lower portions. Its 72.8-in. width, in effect, is highlighted substantially by the distinct sectioning. Connected LED tail lamps shaped in a three-dimensional, “aero fin” style differentiate the landscape from the current iteration. They integrate backup, stop, and turn lights into a single harmonious, fluid form.
     
    Differences between the grades are clear. A dark gray front grille with chrome border, for instance, is a telltale sign of the XLE and Limited versions. So too are the machined-silver LED headlight bezels, body-color rearview mirror housings, and unique wheels ranging in diameter from 17 to 19 inches. Chrome badge letters, as well as dual exhaust with chrome tips individualize the grades.
     
    A more aggressive attitude is worn by XSE and Touring. A piano black mesh grille, machine-finish and Gloss Black wheels, as well as black outer mirror housings are special to the grades. Headlight bezels – also in black – create an engaging mystique never before possessed by Avalon. Rear traits include trunk lid spoiler and badging in black, and a grade-specific lower diffuser set above and between quad tailpipes.
     
    The lineup adopts two all-new Toyota colors: Opulent Amber and Harbor Gray Metallic. Carryover colors include Celestial Silver Metallic, Midnight Black Metallic, and Parisian Night Pearl; new-for-Avalon options include Wind Chill Pearl and Ruby Flare Pearl.
     
    Form follows function in Avalon. The tangential vents at the front, its rear spoiler, and the substantial underbody panel coverage, from front nose to tail, minimize aerodynamic inefficiencies and give Avalon a 0.27 coefficient of drag – besting the outgoing model’s 0.28 Cd.
    Enlightened Lighting
     
    Avalon’s available LED Vision Tech headlamps are the most advanced lighting realized by Toyota. The slim headlights employed by XLE and XSE grades utilize a cluster of three reflectors for Daytime Running Lights (DRL) and low- and high-beam functions, providing exceptional light disbursement in an array of situations, including foul, low-visibility weather.
     
    For Limited and Touring, each headlamp is comprised of thin lighting modules – one for low beam, another for high – plus, an Adaptive LED Cornering lamp and a Dynamic Auxiliary Turn Signal. Each is a Toyota First. The innovative cornering lamps enhance visibility around corners and curves during low- and high-speed maneuvers, as well as when changing lanes or when reversing. The lamp fades in and out for seamless activations and transitions, and adds 60 percent more foreground width to the low beam’s pattern. The Dynamic Auxiliary Turn Signal provides an added degree of noticeable visibility by activating each auxiliary diode in sequential fashion, rather than all on, all off.
     
    Another Toyota first intersects the trifecta of lighting elements within the headlamp: Signature DRL and Parking Light with Technical Laser Ablation. The technology allows light to transmit through its transparent areas encased by a laser-ablated, metallized inner lens. Laser ablation creates a specialized texture by way of intricate patterning.
     
    Avalon’s LED taillights also implement laser ablation on Limited and Touring’s units, as well as Dynamic Auxiliary Turn Signal. The lamps’ three-dimensional Aero Fin Jet makeup insets the reverse indicator below the rear lamp, effectively widening the look of the housing, and, in turn, the sedan’s muscular hips.
     
    Cockpit Meets Cocoon
     
    Avalon’s fluency in luxuriousness and exhilarating extroversions isn’t restrained to its provocative looks. Its TNGA platform’s thin structural pillars and broad windshield lend to the wide, open impression that passengers garner, be they seated in front or rear rows.
     
    Upon opening Avalon’s doors, an overarching simplicity and a purposeful placement of amenities and controls welcomes passengers. Authentic materials, such as the available Yamaha-sourced wood-trim and authentic aluminum pieces, accent arm rests, center console, and instrument panels.
     
    Soft-touch materials are noticeable throughout – around the flowing, low-profile center console decorated in piano black trim; on the slim, tiered instrument panel leading into the doors; in the rear compartment, where doors and console mirror the impressive craftsmanship seen in the front cockpit. A rear cup and device holder, accented in piano black and satin chrome-finish, folds up and down in the armrest between passengers. Ahead of their knees and within arm’s reach: air vents, controls for the available seat warmers, and essential USB charging ports. Deep curvatures in the doors’ armrests provide passengers with ample surface area and comfort during long commutes. Rear seat roominess is exemplified by Avalon’s segment-best measurements in three categories: shoulder room (57.1 in.), leg space (40.3 in. for V6; 40.4 in. for Hybrid), and headroom (37.5 in. for V6; 37.1 in. for Hybrid).
     
    Material differentiation between grades is minimal; engineered wood trim is found on XLE, while Limited features real wood trim. Aluminum pieces adorn Touring’s and XSE’s cabins. A mix of Perforated Ultrasuede wraps all seating in Touring and XSE; Softex seats within XLE receive artistic vertical stitching. Limited goes beyond this creative approach by adding a quilt pattern, special perforation, and two-color stitches – all unique to Toyota.
     
    New-for-2019 Cognac colored leather-surfaces highlights Limited’s upscale vibe. Joining Cognac in Limited’s color quiver are available gray and beige leather-trim; XSE and Touring can be had in either gray or black Perforated Ultrasuede; XLE receives a trio of color offerings with gray, beige, or black Softex.
     
    At the front seats, attentions are immediately fixated on Avalon’s slim center stack. The thin panel houses Avalon’s 9-inch multimedia system (MMS) displaying audio and navigation, and integrates the automotive climate control system. Satin chrome-finish decoration surrounds the center cluster panel that “floats” above the instrument panel, further emphasizing the balanced aura of the modern atmosphere. Below the panel, passengers have easy access to the slide-open eBin containing a 12-volt plug and the standard wireless Qi mobile device charger. A trio of USB power ports (making for five total) is located inside the center console. A part cup-holder, part phone cradle located atop the front console, sits adjacent to the gear selector; supple padding lines either side of the console’s lower tunnel at knee height.
     
    A three-spoke steering wheel welcomes drivers’ eyes and hands with smooth, satin chrome-finish accents and conveniently placed multifunction controls. Visually, the wheel’s aesthetic is neater, having a trimmed inner physique and smaller switch cluster, while hand grips have been enlarged. Cruise Control is now accessible on the wheel’s right spoke. Also for the first time in Avalon, the steering wheel can be wrapped in a two-tone leather-surface when outfitted in Cognac or gray.
     
    Past the steering wheel, a 7-inch Multi-Information Display (MID) shows vehicle information, turn-by-turn navigation, and various vehicle settings (including those pertaining to Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist, Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection, available Intelligent Clearance Sonar, Blind Spot Monitor with Rear Cross-Traffic Alert, and Head-Up Display). Two new menus can be accessed by drivers, including a digital speedometer and, in Hybrid grades, a digital tachometer when its shifter is in “S” mode.
     
    On the MID’s left, there’s a tachometer with long bright white needles and updated typeface. On its right, a speedometer. Hybrid grades receive the same central 7-inch screen, but to its left sits a Hybrid System Indicator showing the vehicle’s regeneration status in CHG (charge), ECO (economy), or PWR (power) in real time. Save for XLE’s gauges, the tachometer/hybrid powertrain meter and speedometer on XSE, Limited, and Touring are surrounded by 3D Glow Rings. A chrome ring borders the entire meter cluster on all grades.
     
    Limited and Touring’s standard color 10-inch Head-Up Display (HUD) – the biggest in the segment – clearly projects important info, such as vehicle and engine speeds, turn-by-turn directions, audio settings, and drive mode, right onto the lower portion of the windshield. It helps drivers stay focused on the road ahead, and is one third of Avalon’s “driver control zone” made of MMS, MID, and HUD. All of them align seamlessly for optimum communication between occupants and vehicle.
    Mega Multimedia
     
    A JBL performance audio system is standard on Limited and Touring grades and is available on XLE and XSE grades. XLE and XSE passengers can listen to crisp tunes on a standard 8-speaker system having Entune 3.0 Audio Plus with Connected Navigation Scout GPS Link App and Entune 3.0 App Suite Connect, featuring new in-vehicle third-party applications. Apple CarPlay is standard on all grades.
     
    Entune 3.0 Toyota Connected Services include: Safety Connect and Service Connect with a 3-year trial period, and Remote Connect with a 6-month trial. Wi-Fi Connect Powered by Verizon trial with up to 2GB within 6 months and Entune 3.0 App Suite is subscription-free.
     
    The system’s new 9-inch capacitive touchscreen can be pinched and flicked, just like personal mobile devices – perfect for pinpointing your favorite pizza joint. Its refresh rate is quicker, its voice recognition is more perceptive, and it better recognizes users’ gestures.
     
    Avalon will also feature Toyota’s first integration of smartwatch or Amazon Alexa-enabled device connectivity, as part of Toyota Remote Connect. This innovative connection allows drivers to lock/unlock their doors, start their engine, or check their fuel level, all from the convenience of their smartwatch or Amazon Alexa-enabled device. It’s voice controllable too, and compatible with select Android or Apple devices. Toyota is among the first automakers to feature Amazon-enabled device connectivity capable of executing home-to-car and car-to-home interactions.
     
    With a standard 14-speaker system – the most speakers in the segment – and full suite of Entune 3.0 Premium Audio, passengers seated within Limited and Touring grades are treated to unprecedented aural and visual stimulus. Many Toyota-first applications with advanced software and hardware are optional for XLE and XSE drivers as well. They too can be equipped with embedded Dynamic Navigation.
     
    1200 Watts, Tailored by JBL
     
    Engineers benchmarked the best systems, two vehicle classes up, into the higher-priced premium large sedan segment. The result: a 14-speaker, 1200-watt, precisely-tuned 7.1-channel surround sound that leverages the benefits of a robust TNGA structure, and utilizes the top in hardware, structural engineering, and software technology.
     
    Key highlights:
    Hardware: Four 1-inch freestanding JB Horn Tweeters control the directivity of sound waves to maximize the optimal listening area at ear level One 12-channel next-generation, Class-D HID12 amplifier to pump 1200 watts of total power to the system, allowing for improved performance and unparalleled efficiency One 10-inch Dual Voice Coil Subwoofer to provide more powerful, deep bass response Two 6-inch Wide Dispersion Speakers in rear doors Two 8x9-inch Wide Dispersion Woofers in front doors Five 3-inch Wide Dispersion Midrange Speakers throughout Software: Clari-Fi rebuilds crucial audio signals lost during digital compression Quantum Logic Surround (Toyota First) to create an unprecedented 7.1-channel surround sound listening experience from any signal source Structure: Sealed inner doors for cleaner, more powerful bass JBL Branding, located on A-Pillar, door trim, and multimedia display The Toyota first Quantum Logic Surround combines individual signal streams of music by using patented filter bank technology and psychoacoustic modeling to create an immersive multi-channel listening experience with exceptional clarity, detail, and image specificity. Clari-Fi analyzes audio streams in real time, rebuilds key details lost in processing, and restores high-fidelity.
    Mid-Size Sedan Heart, Small Car Efficiency
     
    Hustle, athleticism, and fuel-efficiency. Each of these riveting traits has improved, in large part, because of two new TNGA powertrains: a punchy 3.5-liter V6 (2GR-FKS), and, a 2.5-liter Dynamic Force four-cylinder Toyota Hybrid System II (THS II) with 650-volt electric motor (A25A-FXS) and Continuously-Variable Transmission (CVT). Avalon Hybrid continues to be the only full hybrid vehicle in the segment.
     
    The TNGA-derived V6 develops more power with less fuel consumption than ever before. Achieving the two took the application of D-4S direct injection, along with an updated VVT-iW (Variable Valve Timing-intelligent Wide) variable valve timing system.
     
    The VVT-iW system is employed on the intake cycle, with VVT-i (Variable Valve Timing - Intelligent) activated on exhaust. With VVT-iW in place, engineers ensured optimal torque creation at all engine speeds, and minimized pumping losses during the closing of intake valves, which furthered fuel efficiency. The use of Atkinson cycle, too, reduces the V6’s fuel appetite, particularly in cold climates or during wide-open throttle (WOT) situations.
     
    Other V6 specifications include a 11.8:1 compression ratio and bore (3.7 in.) and stroke (3.3 in.) dimensions.
     
    Gears for All Occasions
     
    An all-new TNGA 8-speed Direct Shift-8AT automatic transaxle gearbox (UA80E) channels power to the Avalon’s front wheels. It merges smooth, precise gear selection throughout the RPM range with an alacrity for fuel efficiency and on-demand power. Its revised logic control better matches vehicle speed, engine speed, and torque engagement, while also facilitating poised downshifts.
     
    Its eight gear ratios balance wide range and close ratios, therefore enhancing power application and fuel efficiency. A wider range, specifically at the increased 8th gear ratio, allows for improved high-speed cruising fuel economy. Close ratios at the mid-range gears improve passing power.
     
    A new torque converter provides a wider range of lock-up operation (versus the outgoing 6-speed automatic transmission) to imbue a more enveloping and direct driving feel. The converter contributes to low fuel consumption and passenger comfort, since engine revving is kept to a minimum.
     
    The most thrilling shifting experience, however, is reserved for XSE and Touring drivers, whose optional steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters up Avalon’s sportiness ante without question. The paddles give quick access to gear selection, and when downshifting, the gearbox automatically “rev-matches” for smoother shifts.
     
    Avalon Hybrid: The Most Fuel Efficient Avalon Ever
     
    A new TNGA 2.5-liter four-cylinder Dynamic Force Engine is more fuel efficient, runs cleaner, and is more powerful than previous iterations, and excels at dissipating thermal inefficiencies. Doing it all took the implementation of Toyota’s vast catalog of advanced engine technologies: Dual VVT-i with VVT-iE (Variable Valve Timing intelligent system by Electric motor); D-4S (Direct injection 4-stroke gasoline engine Superior version) direct injection and laser-clad valve seats; longer stroke (4.07 inches; bore remains at 3.44 inches) and high compression ratio (14:1); multi-hole direct fuel injectors; a variable cooling system; cooled Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) system; and a full variable oil pump.
     
    Instead of oil pressure, its Dual VVT-i with VVT-iE variable valve system employs an electric motor to control variable valve timing, which aids fuel efficiency and promotes cleaner exhaust emissions (this is especially helpful in cold climates). The D-4S direct injection combines higher-pressure direct fuel injection (DI) and lower-pressure port fuel injection (PFI), and applies each method of injection based on specific driving parameters. Furthering fuel efficiency are new multi-hole nozzle direct injectors (six holes per injector).
     
    The Ultimate Happy Marriage 
     
    The four-cylinder Dynamic Force Engine is married to an all-new Toyota Hybrid System II powertrain that’s been engineered to inspire both spirited driving and fuel consciousness. THS II uses two electric motors – MG1 and MG2 – to supplement the charging of the hybrid system’s Nickel-Metal Hydride (Ni-MH) battery pack, while MG2 assists the engine.
     
    New for 2019, the highly compact battery pack now resides under the rear passenger seat (instead of the trunk), as a result of improved TNGA packaging and for the betterment of a lower center of gravity. THS II’s new lighter, smaller Power Control Unit (PCU) packages microcontrollers within a power stack structure that’s located above the transaxle – all with the goal of lowering mass to better handling composure.
     
    Efficiencies on many levels are seen with the implementation of the new PCU. Energy loss in the conversion efficiency of the transaxle and electric motor is reduced by approximately 20 percent, and its cooling system’s energy loss is cut by approximately 10 percent. The PCU’s DC-DC converter – which converts a direct current from one voltage level to another – is optimized to reduce overall power consumption. Dimensionally, DC-DC converter’s output filter is smaller, lighter, and quieter for an improved passenger experience.
     
    Auto Glide Control (AGC), yet another of Avalon’s fuel-saving technologies, automatically calculates efficient coasting. When driving normally, engine braking will slow the vehicle down when the driver lifts off from the accelerator pedal. However, to avoid aggressive engine braking, AGC limits the loss of vehicle speed through an automatic drive setting that acts more like a neutral gear, allowing the vehicle to coast to the stoplight.
     
    A light indicating “AGC” is illuminated on the Multi-Information Display (MID) when AGC is active to alert the driver that less deceleration torque than normal is currently being used.  AGC can only be activated when the vehicle is being operated in the ECO drive mode setting.
     
    But who said all hybrids are docile?
     
    Adding more than a sprinkle of spark to Avalon Hybrid’s sporty skillset is the inclusion of a new Sport drive mode and Sequential Shiftmatic technology. The Sport drive mode applies power from the hybrid system for improved acceleration and, as a bonus, all drive modes, including Sport, can each be used while EV mode is activated. With Shiftmatic technology, XSE drivers can “shift” through the Continuously-Variable Transmission’s six simulated gears via steering-wheel mounted paddles or the gearshift.
     
    Piquing the Adventurous Side
     
    Complementing Avalon’s daring looks is a thrilling drive personality imbued by an array of available sport-oriented tools – which, together, represent a Toyota first. Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS), Intake Sound Generator (ISG), grade-specific exhaust baffle tuning, Active Noise Control (ANC), and Engine Sound Enhancement (ESE) fully exemplify Avalon’s most adventurous zeal ever. A more comprehensive four-level drive mode selection – which includes Eco, Normal, Sport/ Sport+, and Custom – is available on Touring, too. All other grades receive a three-level drive mode selection (Eco, Normal, Sport).
     
    Touring’s standard Adaptive Variable Suspension (AVS) provides real-time damping control to maximize controllability and sharp handling. The astute setup reduces Avalon’s posture fluctuations under hard or sudden directional changes, limits body movements, and yet absorbs nasty road undulations for a comfortable, flat ride.
     
    AVS relies on three primary systems to accomplish its mission: shock absorbers at each corner that have solenoid control valves for independent wheel control; advanced front and rear G Sensors to comprehend the vehicle’s condition; and, an intelligent central ECU that reacts to the G Sensor’s observations by dictating exact damping adjustments to the shock absorbers’ solenoids.
     
    Levels of AVS’ damping force are continuously variable, with a maximum of 650 steps. Changes in solenoid force – which restrict absorber fluid and, thus, damping – happen in an incredible 20 milliseconds. Drivers can adjust Avalon’s ride feel with the simple depression of a button – Normal mode prioritizes comfort, while Sport+ emphasizes handling with tauter, highly responsive footing without diminishing Avalon’s celebrated ride suppleness. Progressing from Normal to Sport+ also benefits Avalon’s liveliness. For example, throttle response becomes quicker, the Electronic Power Steering’s (EPS) feel emphasizes feedback, and its engine sound is enhanced through ESE.
     
    The new multi-link rear suspension allows for the enhancement of many positive performance attributes, such as a wider rear track, lower center of gravity, and an aggressive stance. Revised trailing arms have been installed at a higher position to place the pivot axis of the tire rearward for better bump absorption. The setup’s shock absorbers are tilted forward, too, to realize a suppler ride. Bushings on the trailing arms and arm joints further mask passing road imperfections.
     
    Although not equipped with AVS, XLE, Limited, and XSE take full advantage of their innately sporty platform and multi-link rear suspension and, to them, add thicker stabilizer bars and stiffer spring rates for maximum handling dexterity. Spring stiffness, for example, is increased 25 percent when comparing XLE to Limited; stabilizer bar stiffness is up 38 percent and 62 percent, front and rear, respectively, when progressing from XLE to XSE.
     
    World Class Acoustics, Inside and Out
     
    Avalon’s refined acoustic repertoire spans inside and out. Through Sport+, passengers receive a concerto of exciting, natural sounds through a new exhaust system with sport modified baffles, an Intake Sound Generator (ISG), Active Noise Control (ANC), and Engine Sound Enhancement (ESE).
     
    ISG amplifies the engine’s air inhalation sound to create robust vocalization and, on the exhalation end, the all-new exhaust with baffle tuning ups the sound character at start-up, idle, and acceleration. ANC and ESE work to cancel any unwanted exterior noise while simultaneously enhancing engine sound via the JBL multimedia system’s in-cabin speakers. Exceptional engine notes at start-up are also enhanced; a hearty “flare” of sound occurs right before idle upon start-up. At wide-open-throttle acceleration, more engine grunt is heard throughout the rev range.
     
    For all its added energetic vocalization, Avalon never ceases to deliver a civilized, library-quiet interior, if desired. Road noise and engine droning have been culled while cruising quietness and engine sound have been improved. Its TNGA platform utilizes additional seals where front fenders meet front doors and where the doors merge at the B-Pillar. More sound absorption material is found in the engine bay, within the carpet pad, under the floor, and in the wheel well liners. The exterior rearview mirrors not only reduce drag, but also wind noise, making for an extremely quite environment for all.
     
    Top Toyota Safety Tech
     
    Avalon’s standard Toyota Safety Sense P (TSS-P) suite of safety systems and technologies represents one step closer to achieving Toyota Motor Corporation’s ultimate goal of zero casualties from traffic accidents.
     
    TSS-P bundles cutting edge active safety technologies including Pre-Collision System with Pedestrian Detection (PCS w/PD), Full-Speed Range Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (DRCC), Lane Departure Alert with Steering Assist (LDA w/SA); and Automatic High Beams (AHB). Additional standard safety technology includes Blind Spot Monitor (BSM) with Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA) and Back Guide Monitor (BGM).
     
    Also available are Panoramic View Monitor with Alert (PVMA) and Intelligent Clearance Sonar (ICS), which now includes a Rear Cross Traffic Braking (RCTB) system.
     
    All 2019 Avalons have 10 standard airbags and Toyota’s Star Safety System, which includes Enhanced Vehicle Stability Control, Traction Control, Electronic Brake-force Distribution, Brake Assist, Anti-lock Braking System, and Smart Stop Technology. All Avalons also come equipped with a standard backup camera.

    William Maley

    Cadillac Drops Two Doors To Create The ATS Coupe

    The past year has seen a number of rumors and spy shots saying that Cadillac was planning an ATS Coupe. Well the rumors and spy shots were correct as Cadillac introduced the 2015 ATS Coupe at the Detroit Auto Show today.
    The ATS Coupe is much more conservative in its design than the Cadillac CTS Coupe. The lines are very similar to the ATS sedan. The Coupe does have two differentiating design cues from the sedan. The first is the coupe has a much wider track than the sedan. The second is that the ATS features Cadillac's new crestless emblem.
    The ATS Coupe will come with the choice of two different engines. The base will be the 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder with 272 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque (up 14 percent when compared with the 2.0L in the sedan). Optional is the 3.6L V6 with 321 horsepower and 275 pound-feet of torque. Both engines will come with a six-speed automatic as standard, with the turbo getting a six-speed manual as an option. All-wheel drive will be optional as well.
    Like the sedan, the ATS coupe will be available with the FE3 suspension package which adds Magnetic Ride Control, a mechanical limited-slip differential, summer tires, and upgraded engine cooling.
    The ATS Coupe's interior will be decked out in handcrafted leather, wood, aluminum and carbon-fiber trim. Options will include Cadillac's CUE infotainment system, color heads-up display, OnStar with 4G LTE connectivity and onboard wifi, and a Bose audio system that cancels out background noise and pumps engine noises through the speakers.
    The ATS Coupe goes on sale this summer.


    Source: Cadillac
    William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.comor you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
    Press Release is on Page 2
    Cadillac Introduces 2015 ATS Coupe
    - Cadillac's first compact luxury Coupe, infused with ATS sedan's agility
    - 2.0L Turbo model is segment's lightest, with increased torque for faster acceleration
    - Launching in summer 2014, continuing Cadillac's ongoing expansion
    DETROIT – Cadillac today introduced the all-new 2015 ATS Coupe, a quicker and more personal addition to the award-winning ATS product line. Lighter, more agile and more engaging than its competitors, it extends Cadillac's product-driven growth and the brand's tradition of dynamic luxury Coupes.
    Cadillac's first-ever compact luxury Coupe goes on sale this summer, offering drivers the choice of rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive, and the power from a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder or a 3.6L six-cylinder. In all combinations, ATS Coupe takes advantage of its lightweight and strong structure to deliver exhilarating performance with efficiency, with a segment-leading power-to-weight ratio.
    "The 2015 Cadillac ATS Coupe is a natural step in the brand's progression, and another distinctive, fun-to-drive and technologically advanced product for a new generation of drivers extending our target groups," said Uwe Ellinghaus, chief marketing officer, Global Cadillac. "It is an exclusively distinctive American alternative, unique in its class, yet delivering a sporty and sophisticated driving experience rivaling the world's best."
    Like the sedan, the ATS Coupe's driving dynamics are rooted in mass efficiency, which helps make it one of Cadillac's lightest and most agile models ever – and the lightest car in the compact luxury Coupe segment. In fact, the 2.0L Turbo engine is upgraded from the current ATS sport sedan to deliver nearly 14 percent more torque for 2015, taking it to 295 lb-ft (400 Nm). This gives the standard ATS Coupe an advantage in power and weight over similarly equipped Coupes such as the BMW 428i.
    Greater torque means greater pulling power, for a greater feeling of responsiveness at low speeds, and helps the ATS Coupe achieve an estimated 0-60 time of 5.6 seconds.
    "More power with less weight is always a better combination for performance, and the ATS Coupe offers one of the best power-to-weight ratios in the segment, making it feel lighter, more direct and responsive," said David Leone, Cadillac executive chief engineer. "Engineers vetted the ATS's performance on the track and the Coupe benefits from that exhaustive validation – all matched with Cadillac's trademark refinement."
    Elements that contribute to the ATS Coupe's balanced performance and responsive characteristics include:
    - Nearly perfect 50/50 weight balance and low center of gravity
    - Five-link independent rear suspension featuring lightweight, high-strength steel and efficient straight link designs
    - A multi-link double-pivot MacPherson-strut front suspension with direct-acting stabilizer bar
    - Underbody aerodynamic shields
    - Premium, belt-driven electric variable-effort steering gear from ZF Steering Systems
    - Brembo front brakes
    - Eighteen-inch aluminum wheels
    - Available all-wheel drive.
    A driver-adjustable FE3 sport suspension is available and includes Magnetic Ride Control, a mechanical limited-slip differential, high-capacity engine cooling system and 18-inch summer-performance tires. Magnetic Ride Control is a real-time damping system that delivers more precise body motion control. It "reads" the road and can change damping every millisecond.
    Design details
    The 2015 ATS Coupe rides on the same 109.3-inch (2,775 mm) wheelbase as the sedan, but features its own bodywork. The roof, doors, rear fenders and trunk lid are unique to the Coupe, along with a specific front fascia and front fenders that accommodate a wider track than the sedan. It is also the first production model to wear Cadillac's revised crest.
    The Coupe also has an aggressive stance, with wider front/rear tracks than the sedan, enhanced by short overhangs and sheet metal that wrapping tautly around the tires. Standard 18-inch wheels are exclusive to the Coupe.
    Bold lighting elements are a Cadillac signature feature and the ATS Coupe advances that tradition with available LED headlamps with Adaptive Forward Lighting. Base models feature projector-beam headlamps, while high-intensity-discharge headlamps and front vertical LED light signatures are included on all collections above the standard model. Illuminating outside door handles on Performance and Premium collections lend technologically advanced style and function to the distinctive Coupe. All models feature LED technology for the taillamps and rear-center stop lamp.
    The ATS Coupe also includes capless fueling.
    Inside, the sedan's driver-focused cabin carries over to the Coupe, featuring handcrafted cut-and-sewn upholstered interior combinations, decorative stitching and authentic materials, including leather, aluminum, carbon fiber and wood, which enhance the emotional connection to the driving experience.
    Choices of many interior color themes, each with unique accent trim materials, cover a wide range – from light, open and warm to dark and serious, and bold technical and sporty.
    Available interior features include:
    - OnStar 4G LTE connectivity with built-in WiFi hotspot
    - Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity with natural voice recognition
    - Text-to-voice converts incoming text messages to speech and reads them over the audio system speakers
    - USB, auxiliary and SD memory card ports
    - SiriusXM Satellite Radio with three-month trial subscription
    - Reconfigurable 5.7-inch, three-window instrument panel cluster display
    - Full-color reconfigurable head-up display.
    A Bose ® premium audio system with Active Noise Cancelation technology is standard on all models and includes electronic sound enhancement on models equipped with the available premium surround sound audio system. Exclusive to ATS Coupe and differing from other manufacturers' system that pipe recorded engine sounds through the audio system, Cadillac's system enhances only the car's authentic powertrain sounds to enhance the performance experience.
    The 12-speaker surround sound upgrade is available on Standard and Luxury, and it is included with Performance and Premium collections. It includes Bose Audio Pilot, which continuously monitors ambient sounds and adjusts the music volume and program content to optimize the listening experience
    Additionally, a navigation system is also available on Luxury and Performance collections, and it is standard with the Premium Collection.
    Enhanced Cadillac CUE leads technologies
    Cadillac CUE is the centerpiece of the ATS Coupe's comprehensive collection of technologies designed to enhance the driving experience and complement customers' increasingly connected lifestyles. It is available on base models and standard on Luxury, Performance and Premium collections, with enhanced connectivity and convenience for 2015, including a new Text-to-Voice feature for smartphone users with Bluetooth profile (M.A.P.) and Siri Eyes Free for iPhone iOS 6 and iOS 7 users enhance connectivity and convenience. Each enables voice-controlled connectivity – and helps keep phones in pockets and hands on the wheel.
    The heart of CUE is the eight-inch LCD multi-touch sensitive screen, integrated into the top of the central instrument panel and featuring a motorized, fully capacitive faceplate at the bottom concealing a 1.8L storage area. CUE's vibrant LCD screen resembles a smartphone's screen, with large, easy-to-target icons to execute commands.
    Complementing CUE is OnStar 4G LTE connectivity, featuring a new built-in WiFi hotspot that can connect up to seven devices at once. The new 4G LTE connection can also be used to power CUE Collection, a new in-car app marketplace coming to Cadillac vehicles this year.
    Additional technologies that make life with the ATS Coupe more convenient include the capability of remotely starting the engine or lowering the windows with the key fob or the owner's smartphone. EZ Key passive entry and push-button starting is standard, too, so the key never needs to leave the driver's pocket or purse.
    Power-dense powertrains
    The engine lineup includes a standard 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder and available 3.6L V-6. The award-winning 2.0L Turbo is rated at 272 horsepower (203 kW) and 295 lb-ft of torque (400 Nm). The award-winning 3.6L V-6 is rated at 321 horsepower (239 kW) and 275 lb-ft of torque (373 Nm).
    At 136hp/L, the 2.0L Turbo is one of the most power-dense engines in the industry, topping engines from European competitors. It also delivers 90 percent of its peak torque from 2100 rpm to 5400 rpm and the full 295 lb-ft of peak torque (400 Nm) from 3000 to 4600 rpm. The broad torque band is supported by boost levels as high as 18 psi (1.26 bar) in the speed range, which is designed to give the lightweight ATS Coupe an exhilarating feeling of immediate power on demand.
    Both engines feature direct injection and dual overhead camshafts with continuously variable valve timing, which help optimize power and efficiency, as well as reduce emissions. And each is matched with the Hydra-Matic 6L45 six-speed automatic transmission with tap-shift control. A six-speed manual is also available with the 2.0L Turbo.
    Advanced safety features
    ATS Coupe provides the same safety technologies that earned the sedan NHTSA 5-Star all-around and overall crash safety ratings – the highest available.
    Additionally, Cadillac provides available advanced safety based on Cadillac's "control and alert" strategy, which employs up to two cameras, eight ultrasonic sensors and six radar signals to help prevent crashes. The safety features bolster driver vision and awareness of road hazards, and can even assist to help the driver avert potential crashes. In certain situations, Cadillac's advanced crash-avoidance systems, such as automatic braking, can pre-fill and automatically apply braking in response to potential hazards.
    Among the most sophisticated of the features is Fr ont and Rear Automatic Braking . It relies on radar, camera and ultrasonic technology to help the driver prevent front and rear low-speed collisions via a progression of alerts that extend to complete braking, if necessary.
    Many of the advanced safety features are bundled in the Driver Awareness and Driver Assist Packages. The Driver Awareness package is available on Luxury and included in Performance and Premium Collections. It includes:
    - Safety Alert Seat
    - Forward Collision Alert
    - Lane Departure Warning and Lane Keep Assist – new to Cadillac for 2015
    - Intellibeam ® high-beam control
    - Front and rear park assist
    - Rear-vision camera with dynamic guidelines.
    The Driver Assist package is available on Performance and Premium collections and includes all of the Driver Awareness package content, plus:
    - Full-Speed Range Adaptive Cruise Control
    - Automatic Collision Preparation
    - Motorized safety belts – new to Cadillac for 2015
    - Electronic Park Brake
    - Front and Rear Automatic Braking
    - Enhanced Side Blind Zone Alert – new to Cadillac for 2015
    - Rear Cross-Traffic Alert
    - Full-color head-up display.
    The advanced technologies complement other ATS safety features, including eight standard air bags, safety belt pretensioners and load limiters, StabiliTrak electronic stability control system with full-function traction control and four-wheel disc brakes with four-channel ABS, patented rotor coating protection and auto-dry functionality.

    Drew Dowdell

    The oldest designed vehicle on the market finally gets a re-do.

    Mercedes-Benz released a preview of the 2019 Mercedes-Benz G-Class due to be released at the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit.  The images, all of the interior, show a significantly updated G-Class with an interior now at the level customers expect from Mercedes-Benz.  Critics of the current G-Class point out the severely outdated build quality of the current model that does not fit its high price tag.
     
    The new G-Class gets the double-wide 12.3 inch displays found on other Mercedes-Benz models like the S-Class and E-Class. New steering wheel controls respond to finger gestures similar in operation to the screen of a smartphone. Much of the rest of the interior switchgear is lifted straight out of Mercedes-Benz's other models, while the seats and trim finally get the plushness expected at a $123,000 price level.
     
    If you're expecting the G-Class to look different from the current model, don't.  The exterior will largely look the same as the current model. The new G-Class will go on sale late 2018.
    Additional details will be released as we approach the North American International Auto Show in Detroit starting January 15th.
    Source: Mercedes-Benz Media Relations
     
    Press Release on Page 2


    It is an off-road legend and the ultimate benchmark for so many fans of cross-country driving: the G-Class. Since 1979 more than 300,000 vehicles have allowed their owners to experience adventures that would have been unachievable with any other vehicle. Outwardly, the "G" has changed very little. But in fact this  very  special  off-roader  has  constantly  reinvented itself. With its completely updated interior and numerous new features, the G-Class has now undergone the  most  significant  transformation  of  its almost 40-year career, in technical as well as stylistic terms - while staying  true to itself.
    Iconic elements continue to serve very specific purposes, now as then, and to give the G-Class its unique appearance. All these are still to be found in the new G-Class: the distinctive door handles and the characteristic closing sound, the robust exterior protective strip, the exposed spare wheel on the rear door and the prominent indicator lights. It is extraordinary features like these that combine with the off-roader's angular lines to define its special look.
    Interior: as luxurious as it is authentic
    That this is a contemporary interpretation of a legend is also evident, for example, from the car's clear, geometric lines: climbing aboard the G-Class reveals styling elements from the exterior transposed into the interior. The shape of the round headlamps, for instance, which is reflected in the air vents on either side. Or the design of the iconic indicators, found again in the shape of the loudspeakers.
    Hallmarks of the G-Class include the grab handle in front of the front passenger and the chrome-highlighted switches for the differential locks, positioned in clear view. Both have been meticulously optimized and retained as characteristic features.
    G-Class drivers are able to control the full infotainment system without taking their hands off the steering wheel. The touch-sensitive Touch Control Buttons on the steering wheel respond to swiping motions in the same way as the surface of a smartphone. Thanks to haptic impulses and additional feedback from the onboard speakers, the driver can use the touchpad without looking away from the road. The input options are rounded off by shortcut keys in front of the Controller for frequently accessed operating tasks, and by the optional control array for the driving assistance systems above the rotary light switch. The driver sits up close to the windscreen and enjoys good all-round visibility from behind the wheel.
    The very clearly laid-out and completely redesigned instrument panel features timeless tube-look analogue dials as standard. In other words, fans of classic round instruments will certainly not be disappointed in the new G-Class. As in the new E and S-Class, an alternative instrument panel in the form of a large display screen showing virtual instruments in the driver's direct field of vision and a central display above the center console is available as an option. Two 12.3-inch displays blend visually into a wide-screen cockpit beneath a shared glass cover. Drivers can choose between three different styles for the displays – "Classic," "Sport" and "Progressive" – and also configure relevant information and views according to their individual needs.
    High-quality materials and added comfort
    With its unmistakable character and high-quality appointments, the G-Class has always managed to combine off-road capability and luxury in a particularly harmonious way. Even in its standard specification, the G-Class's timeless and authentic open-pore wood trim gives it an air of classical elegance. Its stylish details include the generous use of high-quality metal or carbon fiber trim, and its leather seats.
    "Every G-Class must be put to the test on the Schöckl." And this was the motto that headed the list of requirement specifications when it came to redesigning this classic among off-roaders. It refers to the Graz plant's local mountain, used by Mercedes-Benz for its hard – and some say even merciless - testing, and which each off-roader must be able to conquer. Which is why every "G" bears a certification mark in the form of a "Schöckl" badge at the base of its B-pillar.
    The doors are very solid, clear evidence of that hallmark "G" functionality. The stowage space concept has been thoroughly overhauled, with numerous new
    storage areas ensuring that everything has a home. Under the armrest, for example, is an illuminated compartment for small items. In front of the touchpad in the center console are two removable cup holders. The rear doors are each capable of accommodating a 1-liter water bottle. The rear bench seat has a freestanding backrest, so allowing maximum variability and better visibility through the rear side windows.
    The standard audio system features seven loudspeakers. The Burmester® surround sound system with 16 speakers and a 590 watt amplifier with Digital Sound Processing is available as optional equipment.
    The revised dimensions of the now larger G-Class do not only benefit the driver, but also the passengers in the second row.
    The most important data at a glance:
    Description
    Difference
    Legroom - front
    + 1.5 in (38 mm)
    Legroom - rear
    + 5.9 in (150 mm)
    Shoulder width - front
    + 1.5 in (38 mm)
    Shoulder width - rear
    + 1.1 in (27 mm)
    Elbow room - front
    + 2.7 in (68 mm)
    Elbow room - rear
    + 2.2 in (56 mm)
    The rear seats can be folded down to 60, 40 or 100 percent. The seats in the G-Class are equipped as standard with numerous convenience functions such as the Memory function for the driver's seat, seat heating front and rear, and luxury head restraints in the front. As well as the special multicontour seats, features range from massage functions, climatized seats, fast seat heating and electrically adjustable lumbar supports for the driver and front passenger. The side sections of the seat cushions and backrests of the active multicontour  seats include integrated air chambers that fill or empty on a continuous basis according to the driving dynamics, so providing better support for the seating positions of driver and front passenger and, for example, offering more lateral support during cornering. The front seats of the Active Multicontour Seat package are recommended by experts from the German spinal health organization "Aktion Gesunder Rücken e.V.".
    Extras for the G-Class: two exclusive equipment packages
    There are so many variants for the new G-Class that it is extremely rare for any two cars to be exactly alike. This wide range of equipment options is made possible by the fact that features from the designo manufaktur range have already been integrated into the standard equipment variants.
    Passengers are accommodated on seats in Lugano leather in Black, Nut Brown or Macchiato Beige. There is furthermore a choice of two top-class equipment packages: Exclusive Interior and Exclusive Interior Plus. The Exclusive Interior is available in a range of seven colors. Three of these are elegant combinations of nappa leather in black and one of the designo manufaktur colors Platinum White, Yacht Blue or Classic Red. The package also includes a black designo roof liner in DINAMICA microfiber, along with air vents in silvershadow. The Exclusive Interior Plus comprises additional elements in Nappa leather such as the door trim, sections of the center console, the instrument panel and all the upholstery. A particular feature here is the seat design with dynamic diamond- pattern quilting. With this package, customers have a choice between the designo shades of Black, Espresso Brown and Classic Red. For the first time it is also possible to order a light-colored interior throughout, in Macchiato Beige – encompassing everything from the flooring to the roof liner.
    An off-road legend since 1979
    The G-Class is the top model among luxury off-road vehicles. It is not only by far the passenger car model series with the longest production run in the history of Mercedes-Benz, but also the forefather of all SUVs to bear the three- pointed star – this is why all Mercedes off-road models feature the upper-case G in their name.
    What began in 1972 with a collaboration agreement between the then Daimler- Benz AG and Steyr-Daimler-Puch in the Austrian city of Graz is now a story peppered with superlatives and significant milestones. As it was back then, the G-Class is still built largely by hand in Graz.
    Right from the very first design, this was no ordinary cross-country vehicle. Product planners, designers and engineers designed a vehicle that offered a compelling combination of reliability, robust build and superb off-road performance, which nevertheless appealed to customers as a fully-fledged, comfortable and, above all, safe, exclusive automobile for recreational purposes.
    At the time of its market launch, in the spring of 1979, it was available with a choice of four engine variants covering a performance spectrum of 53 kW / 72 hp to 115 kW / 156 hp. Customers had the option of a Cabriolet with a short wheelbase or Station Wagon models with short or long wheelbase. In 1989, the vehicles in the model series 463 marked the beginning of an evolutionary process for the off-roader that was not just about keeping pace with technical progress. It was an evolution that also brought a steadily expanding fanbase and emphasised its character as an exclusive vehicle for any occasion. And, since 1993, a vehicle with an official name: the G-Class.
    The 25th anniversary of the G-Class was marked by the arrival of a very special model on the market, honed by Mercedes-AMG: the G 55 AMG Kompressor. Its eight-cylinder power unit (350 kW / 476 hp, 700 newton meters of torque) gave the robust off-roader an unprecedented level of performance and demonstrated  the tremendous potential of the G-Class.
    The G-Class's 30th birthday was celebrated in 2009 with a series of new equipment features, enhancing primarily the comfort and exclusivity of the interior. The ergonomically optimized front seats offered more support, while new designs and climatized seats made the veteran beast even more luxurious. Sales of the G-Class have increased continually ever since. Thanks to the  strong growth rates, the forefather of the SUV achieved a new sales record in 2016, with almost 20,000 units being sold within a year.
    New AMG engines, a markedly expanded range of appointments, an even higher-quality interior, careful exterior modifications and safety features such as DISTRONIC Plus as well as the parking aid PARKTRONIC ensured further enhancement of the off-roader in 2012. A year later, Mercedes-Benz expanded the product portfolio with the G 63 AMG 6x6: a three-axle off-road vehicle that combined the "best of three worlds", featuring as it did all the developments of the new G-Class generation, the robustness of heavy off-highway vehicles and the superior engine technology of Mercedes-AMG.
    The G550 4x4² added not only a luxurious interior to the equation, but also ground clearance of 45 centimeters and impressive on-road performance. Since 2015 designo manufaktur has offered customers the possibility to individualize their G with exclusive equipment variants. The extraordinary G 650 Landaulet made its own very special mark in 2017. It was the first of its type to emerge under the Mercedes-Maybach name and only 99 vehicles were built. With its superlative V12 engine, portal axles, electrically operated fabric top and exclusive equipment specification in the rear compartment, this  variant of the "G" was aimed at customers who want their open-top driving to be as exclusive as it is stylish.
    The summer of 2017 saw the 300,000th G-Class roll off the assembly line in Graz – a Mercedes-Benz G 500 in designo Mauritius Blue Metallic with black leather seats and contrasting white topstitching. Equipped with a range of off- road features including all-terrain tires mounted on black 16-inch rims and a sturdy roof rack, the anniversary vehicle embarked this summer on a new adventure. G-Class fans around the world determined the vehicle specification by voting for their favorite equipment and appointments on the official
    G-Class Facebook page. The future road trips of the 300,000th G-Class can also be followed on social networks.
    The new G-Class will be celebrating its world premiere at the 2018 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, and will go on sale in the U.S. by late 2018.
    Please note this information is preliminary; additional information will be provided at the time of the product reveal in January.

    William Maley

    New look and added boost

    Yesterday, we told you about a teaser dropped by Ford for a new ST model. We had a number of guesses ranging from the Focus to the Explorer. Earlier this morning, Ford has revealed the mysterious ST model is the 2019 Edge ST. 
    Taking the place of the Edge Sport, the ST retains the 2.7L EcoBoost V6 but gets a slight power boost - 335 horsepower and 380 pound-feet of torque vs. 315 hp and 350 pound-feet found in the Sport. This will come hooked up to a new eight-speed automatic and all-wheel drive. Ford isn't revealing performance specs, but we're assuming it will slightly quicker to 60 mph than the Sport - hitting 60 mph in 6.2 seconds. The Edge ST also comes with a retuned suspension, tweaked stability control system, and optional performance braking package.
    The Edge ST's exterior is more aggressive with a mesh grille, 21-inch wheels, new side skirts, and dual exhaust tips. Moving inside, Ford has installed new seats with increased bolstering and a steering wheel with ST badging.
    “Edge ST puts a new animal on the road – a performance SUV with a track mentality. From a performance standpoint, and with its SUV silhouette and versatility, it sets a new standard Edge fans will love to drive,”  said Hau Thai-Tang, executive vice president of Product Development and Purchasing in a statement.
    The rest of the Edge lineup sees a number of changes for 2019. Outside, the Edge gets a wider grille, LED headlights, reshaped hood, and slightly tweaked rear tailgate. The interior features a new center console design with a rotary gear selector. Under the hood, the 2.0L EcoBoost gets a 5 horsepower bump to 250. This is paired with an eight-speed automatic and a stop-start system. Ford has also made a number of active safety features standard such as blind spot monitoring, forward collision warning, lane keep assist, pre-collision assist, and automatic high beams.
    No word on pricing, but the 2019 Edge will arrive at dealers this summer.
    Source: Ford
    Press Release is on Page 2


    REVVING UP: FORD DRIVES ALL-NEW EDGE ST INTO SHOWROOMS, ACCELERATING ITS SUV SALES MOMENTUM
    Following Ford’s best-ever U.S. SUV sales in 2017, Ford further steps up the game by introducing first performance-enhanced ST to its SUV lineup with the all-new Edge ST Edge ST features superior handling and braking, ST-tuned sport suspension, Sport Mode, new quick-shifting 8-speed transmission, standard all-wheel-drive, and the most powerful V6 engine in its class New Edge SUV lineup is Ford’s smartest ever, offering more standard driver-assist technology than any other midsize SUV and introducing to the segment new available technologies such as Post-Collision Braking, Evasive Steering Assist and Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop-and-Go and Lane Centering DETROIT, Jan. 11, 2018 – Ford begins introducing the coveted ST brand to its SUV lineup with the unveiling of the all-new Edge ST today, building on its best-ever SUV sales year in the U.S.
    The all-new Edge ST – Ford’s first SUV to be tuned by the Ford Performance team – features the most powerful V6 engine available in its class with a specially tuned 2.7-liter twin-turbocharged EcoBoost® engine pumping out 335 horsepower and 380 lb.-ft. of torque.
    It’s also outfitted for dynamic handling with a quick-shifting 8-speed automatic transmission, standard all-wheel drive with selectable traction control, an available performance brake package, and ST-tuned sport suspension.
    “Edge ST puts a new animal on the road – a performance SUV with a track mentality,” said Hau Thai-Tang, executive vice president of Product Development and Purchasing. “From a performance standpoint, and with its SUV silhouette and versatility, it sets a new standard Edge fans will love to drive.”
    A new Sport Mode allows Edge ST drivers to experience more aggressive throttle response and shifting patterns that hold gears near redline through cornering maneuvers, sharper engine braking, and a more resonant exhaust tone. Drivers can also manually shift using the steering wheel-mounted SelectShift® paddle shifters while firmly positioned in unique Edge ST seating with additional bolstering.
    To complement its performance abilities, Edge ST features new front and rear styling, a wide mesh grille for optimal cooling, deep side skirts and dual-exhaust outlets. Unique 21-inch wheels are available and interior design cues on the steering wheel, seat backs and scuff plates provide a subtle reminder that this five-passenger SUV is something special.
    Smart Vehicle for a Smart World
    The new Edge – including all-new Edge ST – is Ford’s smartest SUV ever, and every model comes standard with more driver-assist technology than any other midsize SUV. This includes Forward Collision Warning and Dynamic Brake Support; Pre-Collision Assist with Pedestrian Detection; BLIS® with Cross-Traffic Alert; Lane-Keeping Alert; Lane-Keeping Assist; Auto High Beams; and Hill-Start Assist. In addition, standard safety features include AdvanceTrac® with Roll Stability Control™ and Curve Control, and 911 Assist®.
    For 2019, Edge introduces the following first-for-Ford and first-in-segment features as either standard or available equipment:
    Post-Collision Braking: Helps reduce the impact of a potential secondary collision by automatically applying moderate brake pressure when an initial collision event is detected; slowing the vehicle can potentially lessen injury to occupants and damage to the vehicle Evasive Steering Assist: Helps drivers steer around stopped or slower vehicles to help avoid collisions. Designed to operate at city and highway speeds, it uses radar and a camera to detect slower-moving and stationary vehicles ahead and provides steering support to enable drivers to maneuver around a vehicle if a collision is imminent Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop-and-Go and Lane Centering: Helps the vehicle maintain a comfortable driving distance from vehicles ahead and helps reduce stress during long, light-traffic road trips by helping keep the vehicle centered in its lane “Edge drivers expect a sophisticated, modern driving experience,” said Cristina Aquino, Edge marketing manager. “Bringing a host of new technologies as standard and introducing these segment-first features helps ensure customers feel more confident behind the wheel.”
    Dual-stage airbags, side-curtain airbags, rain-sensing wipers, rear view camera and an innovative active glove box knee airbag are also standard, while front and rear ultrasonic sensors, 180-degree front and rear cameras and Enhanced Active Park Assist are offered as available equipment.
    Technology for a Connected World
    Inside, drivers will find an available wireless charging pad nestled in the forward media bin, and they can opt for an upgraded audio experience, HD Radio™ and a 12-speaker B&O PLAY™ Premium Audio System by HARMAN specially tuned for Edge.
    Standard on all Edge models is FordPass® Connect, with a Wi-Fi hotspot that gives internet access to up to 10 devices. Using the FordPass™ app, drivers can also use their smartphone to start, lock, unlock and locate their Edge.
    SYNC® with AppLink™, an enhanced voice-recognition communications and entertainment system, is also standard. This system supports the new Ford+Alexa app, giving users access to their favorite media content, daily appointments, smart home controls, and the ability to search for nearby points of interest and even shop for everyday items, all from the road. Drivers can also upgrade to SYNC 3 with an 8-inch touchscreen for enhanced in-vehicle experience.
    A powerfully sophisticated ride
    The new Edge comes standard with a 2.0-liter EcoBoost engine that offers a 5 horsepower increase and improved fuel economy over the outgoing model.
    It is mated to a newly designed 8-speed transmission with Auto Start-Stop technology that efficiently turns the engine off when the vehicle is stopped and idling, then seamlessly restarts in milliseconds when the brake is released.
    Inside, a redesigned center console is accentuated by an all-new rotary gearshift dial that frees up space, allows easier access to the wireless charging pad and enhances the vehicle’s modern, sophisticated feel.
    With a wider grille and freshened fascia that create an athletic, modern appearance, the new Edge maintains the reputation for sophistication it’s carried for more than a decade. Full LED headlamps are standard, LED fog lamps and signature lighting are available and a redesigned hood imparts a wider, more planted stance.
    Built at the Oakville Assembly Plant in Oakville, Ontario, Canada, the new Ford Edge and all-new Edge ST are due to arrive in showrooms this summer.

    William Maley
    William Maley
    Editor/Reporter - CheersandGears.com
    December 19, 2011
    Chevrolet has pulled the curtain back on a hotter version of Sonic. The 2013 Sonic RS will make it's official debut at next month's Detroit Auto Show.
    The Sonic RS differs from the regular Sonic with a new front and rear fascia, rear spoiler, side sills, five-spoke alloy wheels, and a lower, stiffer suspension.
    Power comes from the Sonic's 1.4L turbo four producing 138 HP and 148 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed manual is standard with a six-speed automatic optional.
    Inside, the Sonic RS features sport seats, sport steering wheel, aluminum sport pedals, new trim, and gauge cluster treatment. The Sonic RS will also come with Chevrolet's MyLink infotainment system standard.
    Pricing for the Sonic RS hasn't been announced. The Sonic RS will hit Chevrolet showrooms sometime late next year.

    Press Release is on Page 2

    Turbocharged 2013 Chevrolet Sonic RS Pushes Performance



    Unique exterior and interior styling, sport-tuned suspension and standard MyLink


    DETROIT – A hotter Chevrolet Sonic is about to sound off – the 2013 Sonic RS. It goes on sale in late 2012, after making its public debut at the North American International Auto Show Jan. 14-22.
    The new RS amplifies the Sonic’s youthful style and driving experience with unique exterior and interior features matched with a 138-horsepower (103 kW) Ecotec 1.4L turbo engine. Sonic is the only vehicle in its segment to offer a turbocharged powertrain.
    “The new Chevrolet Sonic RS pushes Chevrolet’s performance heritage in a new direction, for a new generation of drivers,” said Chris Perry, vice president of Global Chevrolet Marketing. “It takes the Sonic’s great design and latest connectivity features and combines them with a more performance-oriented look and feel.”
    The Sonic RS is offered exclusively in the five-door body style. Chevrolet’s exclusive MyLink infotainment system is standard. It enables navigation directions downloaded through a smart phone to be shown on the radio’s large display, and offers the personalized connectivity of Pandora and Stitcher Internet radio.
    Sonic RS exterior features
    New front fascia with new fog lamp design
    New RS-specific grille
    New rear fascia
    New rear spoiler
    New rocker moldings
    Unique mirror cap finish
    Retuned sport exhaust with chrome outlet
    Unique 17-inch five-spoke wheel design
    Lowered and stiffened suspension with performance-tuned dampers
    RS badging.

    The more-aggressive look of the Sonic RS is inspired by the concept that debuted in Detroit in 2010. The Sonic RS will be available in Victory Red, Summit White, Cyber Gray Metallic and Black Granite Metallic, which is a new exterior color for the 2013 Sonic.
    “The Sonic RS remains true to the progressive spirit of the concept and brings an unmistakable attitude to the segment,” said John Mack, design director for the Sonic. “From every angle and every touch point, it is a car that is unabashed in its performance statement – and one that drives Chevrolet’s performance legacy into its second century.”
    One of the most-dramatic cues from the concept carried into the production model is the Sonic RS’s front fascia, which has a deep air dam design that enhances the car’s road-hugging stance. Vertical intakes at the edges of the fascia reinforce the wide, low proportion and house the fog lamps.
    Sonic RS interior features
    New front sport seats
    New sport steering wheel with thicker rim and racing-inspired flat-bottom design
    New shifter knob (manual transmission)
    New aluminum sport pedals
    Specific instrument panel cluster graphics
    RS-specific interior trim color for the instrument panel and door trim inserts.

    “Like the exterior, the Sonic RS’s interior looks and feels the part of a true performance car,” said Mack. “The seats are firm and provide great lateral support during quick cornering and the feel of the thick, flat-bottom steering wheel is a feature driving enthusiasts will truly appreciate.”
    The Sonic RS’s interior is a connected environment, with the Chevrolet MyLink infotainment seven-inch color touch screen radio. This system allows customers to bring customized music libraries into the vehicle and use their smart phones and Bluetooth connectivity to access Pandora and Stitcher Internet radio and navigation. Navigation directions downloaded through a smart phone can be displayed on the screen and, when the vehicle is stopped, users can project video and even personal photo albums onto the screen from their phone.
    Sonic RS performance
    The Sonic RS is powered by a standard Ecotec 1.4L turbo engine that is rated at 138 horsepower (103 kW) and 148 lb.-ft. of torque (200 Nm) – and provides an immediate feeling of power that is sustained across the rpm band, for a greater feeling of performance at lower rpm. It’s matched with a six-speed manual transmission or six-speed automatic.
    Unique gear ratios for the six-speed manual transmission and unique final drive ratio for the automatic give the Sonic RS a sportier feel than non-RS models.
    Complementing the segment-exclusive turbocharged powertrain is MacPherson strut front suspension with coil springs and stabilizer bar, and a semi-independent, torsion beam axle-mount compound link-type rear suspension – featuring a robust, tubular V-shape beam – with gas-charged shocks. The front and rear tracks are identical at 59.4 inches (1,509 mm), for well-planted stability and balance.
    The new RS is the only Sonic model offered with four-wheel disc brakes, which are partnered with a four-channel anti-lock braking system. The four-sensor system – one at each wheel – incorporates electronic brake force distribution, which balances braking performance based on such factors as road conditions and the weight of passengers and/or cargo.
    Electric power steering is standard and features a wear compensator that continually adjusts the system interaction with the steering gear to ensure precise steering action over the life of the system.
    Sonic lineup at a glance
    The Chevrolet Sonic is offered in two body styles: a four-door sedan and a five-door, with a starting price of $14,495 (including destination charge). Each body style delivers class-leading, rear-seat roominess and cargo space. Vehicle highlights include:
    Standard Ecotec 1.8L engine (non-RS models) paired with five-speed manual or six-speed automatic transmissions
    Standard electric power steering and StabiliTrak electronic stability control with rollover sensing
    Sedan offers trunk capacity that is greater than most compact cars; hatchback and sedan offer better rear-seat roominess than Ford Fiesta. With a rear seat that folds nearly flat, the Sonic hatchback has greater cargo capacity than Fiesta
    Connectivity includes OnStar with six months of Turn-by-Turn navigation. Available features include XM Satellite Radio, USB and Bluetooth functionality and MyChevrolet mobile application
    Remote start, heated front seats and sunroof – all rarities in the segment
    Ten standard air bags, anti-lock brakes, electronic brake force distribution, brake assist and OnStar with Automatic Crash Response.

    Sonic is built at the General Motors’ Orion Assembly Center in Michigan, which received a $545-million investment in upgrades and retooling and helped restore approximately 1,000 jobs in the metropolitan Detroit area.



About us

CheersandGears.com - Founded 2001

We ♥ Cars

Get in touch

Follow us

Recent tweets

facebook

×
×
  • Create New...