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    William Maley

    Lexus is bringing another F model to Detroit to join the RC-F.

    This past year at the Detroit Auto Show, Lexus unveiled the RC F which packs a 467 horsepower V8 engine. For the 2015 Detroit Auto Show, Lexus is readying another F model debut.
    The automaker released two teaser shots revealing a new body kit, and a set larger wheels and brakes. We don't know what the model is, but speculation is ranging from a new IS-F to F version of the GS. We'll have more details when Lexus presents the vehicle on January 13th.
    Source: Lexus

    Press Release is on Page 2
    A Track-Ready Lexus Poised to Make Global Debut at 2015 NAIAS
    New Model Will Broaden the Lexus Brand's High Performance Showroom

    TORRANCE, Calif. – Dec. 17, 2014 – Lexus announced it will be adding a second vehicle to its growing stable of F brand high performance models. Earlier this year, the luxury manufacturer launched the RC F, a V8 powered performance coupe. The newest Lexus F brand vehicle will make its global premiere at the 2015 North American International Auto Show on Jan. 13.

    Drew Dowdell

    Lexus adds the GS-F to their F-Performance line. Joining the RC-F and IS-F, the GS-F will feature a 467hp 5.0 liter V8.

    Last month we showed you a teaser picture of the a coming performance Lexus model, yet at the time Lexus did not release the name. If you guessed it was a GS-F, congratulations, you win the prize. Ahead of the Detroit Auto Show next week, Lexus has taken the wraps off of the 2016 Lexus GS-F. Joining the Lexus IS-F and RC-F, Lexus's F-Performance line is positioned to take on competition from Mercedes' AMG, BMW's M, and Cadillac's V-series cars.
    The GS-F will come with a 467 horsepower, naturally aspirated V8 that uses both Otto and Atkinson cycles to alternate between power and efficiency as the driving situation dictates. The V8's peak torque rating of 389 lb-ft is available from 4,800 rpm to 5,600 rpm. Power is funneled through the 8-speed automatic to a torque vectoring differential with multi-mode operation at the rear axle.
    Lexus is rather thin on other details at this time, but one spec does stand out; the curb weight of the GS-F is 4,034 lbs, making it one of the lighter vehicles in the segment, of course the GS-F is also lighter on horsepower as well, so we'll see how that shakes out.
    The press conference for the GS-F is on Tuesday January 13th at 8:40am eastern. We will be on hand to bring you updates from the show floor.
    The Lexus Press release is on page 2

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    Source: Lexus Media
    TORRANCE, Calif. (Jan. 6, 2015) – Lexus is yet again showing its sporty disposition and rumbling into Detroit. The luxury vehicle manufacturer has announced the much-anticipated GS F performance sedan, which combines a refined four-door package with the speed and agility of a premium sports car, will be revealed at the North American International Auto Show on Tuesday, Jan. 13 at 8:40 a.m. EST in the Lexus display at Cobo Center in Detroit. The GS F will be the latest vehicle to join Lexus’ high-performance “F” line that already includes the RC F coupe.
    Although the GS 350 F SPORT shares the same platform as the new GS F, they should not be confused. The GS F will have enhancements throughout, including to its engine. Under the hood will be a responsive, naturally-aspirated 5.0-liter V8 that produces a remarkable 467 hp (473 PS )* at 7,100 rpm and peak torque of 389 lb.-ft. (527 Nm)* at 4,800-5,600 rpm. This sophisticated engine uses both Otto and Atkinson combustion cycles to maximize power and efficiency in given situations. Befitting the nature of this high performance sedan, the engine will be mated to a lightning quick eight-speed automatic gearbox with manual-shifting capabilities.
    Lexus’ innovative Torque Vectoring Differential (TVD), also found in the RC F, will be part of a long line of standard equipment that’ll make the GS F’s handling stand out from the crowd. The TVD features three operating modes:
    Standard (default) provides a balance of agility and firmness;
    Slalom emphasizes nimble steering response and agility; and
    Track emphasizes control during high-speed circuit driving.

    The GS F unibody will also feature structural reinforcements and suspension exclusively designed to optimize this super sedan’s handling envelope without detracting from its ride quality. Drivers will appreciate the GS F’s handling and smoothness on the open highway as well as the sedan’s ability to devour challenging roads, whether they’re winding up the side of a mountain or at a racetrack. The new GS F will offer drivers a very balanced sedan with genuine dual personality, equally adept at trimming lap times and the commute back home.

    Preliminary Specifications* Overall length 4,915 mm 193.5 in. Overall width 1,845 mm 72.6 in. Overall height 1,440 mm 56.7in. Wheelbase 2,850 mm 112.2 in. Tread (Fr/Rr) 1,555 mm/1,560 mm 61.2in./61.4 in. Curb Weight 1,830 kg 4,034 lb. Wheels 19’’×9J (Fr)
    19’’×10J (Rr) - Tires 255/35R19(Fr)
    275/35R19(Rr) -
    *All specifications are for the U.S. market

    Drew Dowdell

    Kia teases us with a concept to debut at the 2016 North American International Auto Show

    Looking like a cross between a Kia Soul and a Range Rover or Volvo XC90, Kia released a teaser for a surprise concept they will be showing next week at the Detroit Auto Show. This could signal Kia's return to the large SUV segment after the less than stellar sales of the 2009 - 2011 Kia Borrego.
    Kia says the concept will feature state of the art health and wellness technology and a new direction for Kia's design language. Little else has been released at this time.
    The Kia SUV concept will be officially unveiled at 2:15pm eastern time on January 11th.
    Stay tuned to CheersandGears.com for all of your 2016 Detroit Auto Show coverage

    William Maley

    Kia reveals a sportier side with the GT4 Stinger Concept.

    We're just a couple weeks away from the Detroit Auto Show and Kia has given us a glimpse of what they'll be showing. Meet the the GT4 Stinger Concept, a 2+2 sports car.
    From what we can tell from this teaser shot, the concept will feature the automaker's signature grill and a set of vertical LED headlamps along either side. There is also a cooling vents for the brakes and carbon fiber front splitter.
    More intriguing is what's under the hood - a turbocharged 2.0L (we're thinking four-cylinder) that makes 315 horsepower and sends it to the rear wheels.
    We'll have more information on the GT4 Stinger when it debuts at the Detroit Auto Show on January 13th.
    Source: Kia
    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
    Behold, the Kia GT4 Stinger...
    Kia faithful will immediately notice the latest iteration of the signature grille resting mere inches from the ground. The surround glows white and is flanked by vertical LED headlamps. Front-brake cooling vents funnel air around custom 20-inch wheels. A carbon fiber front splitter mounted below the bumper provides added downforce for the car and keeps the GT4 Stinger's front tires firmly planted to the tarmac.
    Under the hood you ask? A turbocharged 2.0-liter that pumps 315 horsepower to the rear wheels.
    More to come. Stay tuned.

    William Maley

    Jaguar's Crossover Gets A Name

    That was fast. Almost a couple of years after introducing the Jaguar C-X17 crossover concept to the world, Jaguar announced that a production version would be shown at the Frankfurt Motor Show in March. The automaker also revealed the name of the production version - the F-Pace.
    While we are still scratching our heads as to why Jaguar has named the crossover the F-Pace, we should give them some credit for not naming it a combination of letters and numbers. The crossover will have seating for five people, come with all-wheel drive, and feature inspiration from the F-Type.
    "In 2015 we will celebrate the 80th year of Jaguar. We have started it by announcing our first performance crossover which we consider to be the ultimate practical sports car - a car that builds on the brand's founding ideals of Grace, Pace and Space to become one of the most innovative Jaguar vehicles we've ever developed. The F-PACE has now begun its engineering and development testing program ahead of the new model going on sale in 2016. F-PACE continues the new model roll-out for Jaguar, ensuring 2015 will most definitely be the year of the cat," said Andy Goss, Jaguar Land Rover Global Sales Director.
    Source: Jaguar
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    Press Release is on Page 2
    - Jaguar announces F-PACE – the production version of the breakthrough C-X17 concept car- A highly-efficient five-seat performance crossover underpinned by Jaguar's innovative aluminium-intensive architecture and advanced suspension system
    - All-weather and dynamic driving traction to be aided by the Instinctive All Wheel Drive® system and Jaguar's All Surface Progress Control technology*- The Jaguar F-PACE will deliver an unrivalled blend of style, performance and practicality
    (MAHWAH, NJ) – January 11, 2015 – Jaguar has today confirmed it will introduce an all-new model to the Jaguar line-up, to go on-sale in 2016, named the Jaguar F-PACE.
    Ian Callum, Director of Design, Jaguar, commented, "We received such an overwhelmingly positive response to the C-X17 concept car last year that we just had to make it a reality.
    "The Jaguar F-PACE, inspired by the F-TYPE, represents a perfectly judged balance of style, performance and practicality. It offers a unique combination of Jaguar sports car inspired exterior design, fused beautifully with a thoroughly practical and spacious luxury interior. The F-PACE is our family sports car."
    The Jaguar F-PACE couples leading interior space and exceptional on-road dynamics with five-seat functionality to produce a true performance crossover. It will encapsulate everything that Jaguar stands for: beautiful design, precise handling, a supple ride, luxurious interior finishes and cutting-edge technology.
    Speaking in Detroit, Andy Goss, Jaguar Land Rover Global Sales Director said, "In 2015 we will celebrate the 80th year of Jaguar. We have started it by announcing our first performance crossover which we consider to be the ultimate practical sports car - a car that builds on the brand's founding ideals of Grace, Pace and Space to become one of the most innovative Jaguar vehicles we've ever developed. The F-PACE has now begun its engineering and development testing program ahead of the new model going on sale in 2016."
    F-PACE continues the new model roll-out for Jaguar, ensuring 2015 will most definitely be the year of the cat."
    Designed and engineered in the UK, the F-PACE has now begun its rigorous real-world testing at Jaguar Land Rover's extensive global test facilities. The F-PACE will be manufactured in Solihull, UK.
    Further details of Jaguar's all-new F-PACE will be revealed later this year - #FPACE

    Drew Dowdell

    Infiniti shares a picture preview of the Infiniti Q60 Concept.

    Infiniti shared a full picture of the Q60 Concept due to be unveiled at the Detroit Auto Show next week. Shown here in coupe form, the Q60 concept takes the Q60 (née G37 coupe) down a more aggressive looking route. While this is labeled a concept, one look at the sister car Q50 sedan will tell you that there is no reason Infiniti would need to vary the look much once in production. If you imagine this car with production mirrors, wheels, and a simpler lower air intake area, you'll probably be pretty close to the real thing.
    Under the hood, expect the standard compliment of a 3.7 liter V6 with output in the 330 horsepower range and a choice of rear-wheel drive or all-wheel drive. While Infiniti does make a hybrid version of the Q50 sedan, we doubt that powertrain will make it into the coupe.

    The Infiniti Q60 Coupe Concept will be shown at an event on January 11th at 4pm and again during the Detroit Auto Show on January 13th at 8:05 am eastern. We will be on hand at the Sunday event to bring you more pictures and updates.

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    Drew Dowdell

    Infiniti finally pulled the sheet off of the Q60 Concept allowing us a full view of all sides and inside.

    Infiniti finally pulled the sheet off of the Q60 Concept today at the Detroit Auto Show, allowing us a full view of all sides and inside.
    The low slung coupe is the future design and engineering direction for Infiniti. The Q60 will be put into production in a few years time and will be the debut model for a new family of turbo-charged, direct injected engines. We've heard that both 4-cylinder and 6-cylinder engines will be available but very little else was offered from a technical level.
    The interior has hand stitched leather with carbon fiber accents and is surprisingly roomy for a 2 by 2 coupe.
    The exterior features LED lighting and light piping, even the badge is back lit in a bright white.
    The production version will start up for 2016 which means that we will see this car again in the next year or so at one of the auto shows.
    Infiniti Press Release on Page 2

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    The power to captivate: Infiniti Q60 Concept

    Infiniti reveals two-door concept for a future sports coupe
    Design draws cues from latest Infiniti models and Formula One
    Handmade leather finishes, Alcantara®, and carbon fiber feature in the bespoke interior
    HONG KONG – Ahead of the 2015 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit, Infiniti raises the curtain on its vision of a premium sports coupe.
    The striking Q60 Concept is poised to entice coupe fans with its sharp contours and hand-crafted interior, while at the same time suggesting performance and power to match. Result: a no-compromise fusion of looks and speed.
    The Q60 Concept sits low and wide in a road-hugging stance hinting at exceptional dynamics and driving pleasure.
    While the Q60 Concept is fresh and original, it evokes a sense of déjà vu at times with whiffs and traces of the Q80 Inspiration (shown this past October at the Paris Motor Show) evident in its finest details.
    The audaciously low roofline and quilted leather seats remind one of the elegant full-size Q80 Inspiration, while the aerodynamic gills behind the front wheel arches are inherited from the Q50 Eau Rouge sports saloon concept.
    "The Q80 Inspiration was an indication of Infiniti's future design language," said Alfonso Albaisa, Infiniti Executive Design Director. "The Q60 Concept is the next step in the journey. The sweeping lines of the Q80 Inspiration gave the Q60 Concept its coupe silhouette and looks while the Formula One-inspired touches from the Q50 Eau Rouge endowed the coupe with its sports personality."
    The visual excitement in the edgy lines of the concept is set off by the custom 21-inch wheels, which take up the entire wheel arch. Inspired by jet turbine blades, the black spokes in a combination of mattes and chromes stretch to the edge of the wheel, further emphasizing how "planted" the coupe is.
    The high-quality ambience inside speaks of Infiniti's meticulous attention to detail, clearly evident from the impeccable hand-stitched leather to the precise treatment of the carbon fiber accents.
    Infiniti designers use a variety of leathers on the seats to provide just the perfect balance of comfort and support as befits a premium sports coupe. They also make the Q60 Concept a genuine "2+2" coupe by giving rear passengers more legroom through the use of genuine sport seats.
    As a foreshadowing of the next generation of Infiniti's premium sports coupe, the Q60 Concept makes use of taut lines and sports car cues to convey exceptional stance and presence.
    See the Q60 Concept in the metal when Infiniti holds its 2015 NAIAS press conference at 8:10 a.m. ET on Tuesday, January 13.

    William Maley

    How to usher in a new era at Lexus

    The theme of Lexus' press conference for the introduction of the LC 500 was 'New Chapter'. Phrases such as 'cars that fill the heart' were thrown around during the presentation done by Akio Toyoda today. Considering what the LC 500' intent is, it does mark something new.
    In terms of looks, LC 500 looks very similar to the LF-LC concept shown four years ago at Detroit. Yes, there is an imposing predator grille which will be likely sticking point for a number of people. But there are some other touches such as the fanged lights, intergrated door handles, and a rear end that makes a call back to the orignal SC from the 90's.
    The LC rides a new rear-drive platform that is purpose built for performance and handling. This new platform will underpin future vehicles.
    Before you think the LC is a competitor to the likes of the Porsche 911, it measures out to 188 inches in overall length. This means the LC is more a competitor to the likes of the BMW 6-Series and Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupe.
    Structurally, the LC boasts a combination of carbon fiber reinforced plastic, aluminum, and high-strength steel. There is the option of a carbon fiber roof to increase rigidity and cut weight. Lexus says the LC is the stiffest unibody structure they have ever created, and that's including the LFA.
    Power will come from 5.0L V8 that is found under the hood of the GS-F and RC-F. Power output stands at 467 horsepower and 389 pound-feet of torque. A new ten-speed automatic routes the power to the rear wheels. Lexus claims a 0-60 MPH time of 4.5 seconds.
    The interior features a large floating center stack that separates driver and passenger and the availability of leather and Alcantara for the seats.
    Lexus will launch the LC 500 next year.
    Source: Lexus
    Pic Credit: Lexus

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

    Global Debut of All-New Lexus LC 500 at the 2016 NAIAS Signals Dawn of a New Era for Lexus
    Alluring, expressively designed luxury coupe defines a new era for the global luxury brand The coupe’s styling, performance, and craftsmanship help position the vehicle as one of Lexus’ flagship products LC 500 utilizes the brand’s new architecture that promises enhanced dynamic capability and performance A symbol of an evolving vehicle development culture that embraces heightened collaboration between Design and Engineering teams

    DETROIT (Jan. 11, 2016) — When the Lexus LF-LC Concept debuted at the 2012 North American International Auto Show, the press, loyal customers, and enthusiasts wondered if the concept’s arresting styling and dramatic proportions could ever evolve into a production 2+2 coupe. Today, four years after the debut of the breakthrough concept that inspired it, Lexus has revealed the all-new LC 500 luxury coupe. This provocative, athletic flagship coupe makes the strongest statement yet about Lexus’ future product direction.

    The past five years have seen Lexus evolve rapidly with the creation of the luxury brand’s globally-focused organization, Lexus International. Exciting new models involving elevated levels of emotional styling and dynamic driving characteristics such as NX, RC, and IS have also helped Lexus’ brand shift with consumers. Akio Toyoda has been at the center of the Lexus global expansion, personally driving a heightened level of collaboration among design, engineering and marketing teams to help build a luxury brand better suited to meet the needs of the next generation of consumers.
    “The LC 500 has been an important product for Lexus and me personally,” said Akio Toyoda, Chief Branding Officer and Master Driver for Lexus. “A few years ago, we decided to guide the future of the brand with products that had more passion and distinction in the luxury market. This flagship luxury coupe’s proportions, stunning design and performance make a strong statement about our brand’s emotional direction and will grow the Lexus luxury appeal globally.”
    Design and Engineering Teams United
    Beyond its styling and impactful performance, the new LC 500 serves as a symbol of the achievement that can result from heightened collaboration between design and engineering groups and their commitment to help overcome each other’s hurdles. When Akio Toyoda challenged these development groups to produce this special car, it meant surpassing many manufacturing, design, material, and dynamic obstacles that could typically compromise a vehicle’s targets or design vision.
    The LC 500 was driven by a strong, appealing fundamental design target (LF-LC), and engineering teams worked tirelessly to find new solutions to maintain as much of the concept in the production car as possible. Likewise, vehicle designers were very involved from the earliest stages of the dynamic development process to understand the engineering targets and collaborate with design viewpoints and potential solutions. With LC 500, additional levels of prototype vehicle build also allowed both teams to better study design or engineering ideas and refine key elements. For Lexus, the LC 500 project became much more than simply the development of a new coupe. The LC 500, with the shift in engineering processes and design ideologies it represents, symbolizes the beginning of a new phase for the Lexus brand.
    “Design and engineering sides worked together on issues and obstacles that were overcome one by one. I feel we achieved something greater than simply preserving the spirit of the concept’s design,” said Chief Engineer Koji Sato.
    Exterior Design
    At first glance, it becomes apparent that the engineering and design team’s collaboration was highly successful, considering how much of the LF-LC’s design ideology the team was able to transfer into the new LC 500. The new production model shares many of the key design elements, proportions and visual dynamism of the concept car that inspired it. The LC 500’s visual appeal is defined by an athletic aerodynamic shape. It features sensual curves, emotional forms, an available flowing carbon-fiber roof (glass roof standard), helping create a low, wide imposing stance that comes together for a highly functional, passionate package.
    The LC 500’s front fascia features a powerful interpretation of Lexus’ distinctive grille, bordered by chrome on three sides and a radical new 3D mesh design that varies its visual tension. The “L”-shaped daytime running lights rest below a new Triple LED headlamp unit, specially designed to include one of the industry’s thinnest projectors enabling a low hood with a short front overhang. Functional venting also plays into the LC 500’s exterior design to help improve aerodynamic stability and cooling. The car’s athletic profile is characterized by its fast, sloped roofline, its wind-cutting silhouette, a long 2,870 mm (113 inches) wheelbase with compact front 920 mm ( 36.2 inches) and rear 970 mm ( 38.2 inches) overhangs and low hood height. The sexy curves and flowing lines maintain a consistent tension in sheetmetal through to the rear end that features slimly designed, multi-layered tail lamps with a unique lighting effect that helps convey a sequential L motif. A rear diffuser and available active rear spoiler also help manage airflow during performance driving. It rides on machined cast aluminum 20-in. or available 21-in. forged aluminum wheels.
    Interior Design
    The interior design of the LC 500 is influenced by the dynamic luxury theme of the exterior with a layout that is both cockpit-focused and elegant. The coupe’s driving position was calibrated to invite spirited, sporting driving, and help develop easier confidence with a more intuitive control layout. In fact, for LC 500, the driver’s hip point was engineered to be as close as possible to the vehicle’s Cg (Center of gravity) where feedback from the car is the most communicative to the driver. The front seats offer excellent support and comfort for long drives while available sport seats offer additional bolstering and lateral support during cornering. Lexus engineers put considerable effort into creating an engaging yet seductive atmosphere for the driver, focusing on details such as the size and angle of the steering wheel, the feel and positioning of magnesium alloy paddle shifters, and available supple leather and Alcantara seating surfaces. The LC 500’s exquisite door panels, center console and dash pad structures feature elements of Lexus’ world-renowned, detail-obsessed Takumi craftsmanship in their finish.
    “At an early stage, the designers collaborated with the engineers to understand their image for the LC 500’s driving dynamics, and they incorporated this into the design,” said Tadao Mori, the chief designer of the LC 500. “For example, we gave serious consideration to where the driver’s eyes would focus, and designed the surface shape in that area to help support a driver’s mindset. This project was one of the first times that designers were closely involved in the dynamic engineering development so we could understand the driving goals and support with the car’s design.”
    In helping to drive the future of the Lexus brand, the mission for LC 500 is to offer a dynamic driving experience and character unlike any Lexus vehicle prior to it. The pursuit of a sharper, more refined driving experience became the mission for the development team who also sought to maintain a superior Lexus ride quality befitting a flagship luxury sport coupe.
    The LC 500 is the first Lexus to use the brand’s all-new, premium rear-wheel-drive luxury platform and is part of the new corporate global architecture for luxury vehicles (GA-L). The underpinnings of this new coupe will become the blueprint for the company’s future front-engine/rear-wheel-drive vehicles. In an effort to sharpen the car’s handling, the LC 500’s engineers focused on the platform’s fundamentals by placing most of the mass, including the engine and the occupants, in a position more centralized and lower in the chassis to improve the center of gravity.
    Internally, Lexus engineers referred to this menu of mass-arranging tactics as the “inertia spec.” The driver hip and heel points have been lowered, wheels have been pushed to the corners of the car with shortened overhangs, and the drivetrain mass has been located behind the front axle line to create a front mid-ship layout. The LC 500 also relies on run-flat tires to improve packaging, reduce weight (thanks to no spare), and help shorten overhangs to achieve dynamic targets. The 12-volt battery has been relocated to the trunk as part of the mission to redistribute weight.
    Other mass management measures include the available carbon fiber roof, aluminum door skins mounted to the carbon fiber door inner structure, and a composite trunk floor. The LC 500 also represents the Lexus brand’s most intensive use of high-strength steel. This provides enhanced rigidity while reducing—and ideally positioning—vehicle mass to optimize dynamics. As a result, the LC 500 is very balanced with a nearly ideal front/rear weight distribution of 52/48.
    To help achieve the level of chassis performance targeted for this new coupe, Lexus engineered the stiffest unibody the brand has ever produced. For LC 500, the strategic use of lightweight, high-strength steel helps make for a high degree of torsional rigidity that is more resistant to twisting forces than the exotic, carbon fiber-intensive LFA supercar. The platform design maintains a consistent level of resistance to flexural forces and stiffness across the vehicle’s wheelbase to help create consistent, predictable handling behavior and sharper steering responses. Special braces in the engine compartment (usually a more twist-prone part of the chassis), the adoption of stiff aluminum front suspension towers, and the addition of a ring structure near the rear fenders are all measures that help further bolster the strength of key chassis structures.
    Particular attention was devoted to the LC 500’s multilink suspension system. Double ball joints on the upper and lower control arms allow for control of the smallest movements from the driver inputs and road conditions. Beyond sharing workload, a dual ball joint arrangement helps optimize suspension geometry to increase wheel control and create a more precise steering response with better initial effort. To help reduce unsprung mass and improve suspension response, all but one of the control arms are made of lightweight forged aluminum. Providing the grip on the show prototype car are concept versions of Michelin Pilot Sport tires with Premium Touch® sidewall technology: 245/40RF21 up front and 275/35RF21 at the rear. When all the handling elements come together, LC 500 becomes a world-class luxury sports coupe that exhibits razor-sharp reflexes, exceptional handling balance and rock-solid stability. This all-new platform will continue to undergo continuous improvement and enhancement throughout the vehicle’s lifecycle.
    Said Sato: “We spent more than triple the usual amount of R&D time to pursue linear steering and to find the sweet spot for road contact feel. We also focused our efforts on suspension rigidity and enhancing geometry. Thanks to advancements in product engineering, we are now at a world-class level for suspension rigidity, and performance when lateral g’s are applied.”
    The power delivery to the rear wheels for LC 500 is handled by a new, very well matched set of components that maximize output to the wheels. The heart of the new LC 500 is derived from the proven, high-revving 5.0-liter V8 that is found in the RC F and GS F. The naturally aspirated V8 was selected for its smooth, linear throttle response and emotional engine sound. The all-aluminum, 32-valve V8’s output targets 467 HP and 389 lb.-ft. of torque. The new engine is built for durability with lightweight, high-strength forged connecting rods and titanium valves that allow the engine to flourish at high rpm. This naturally aspirated engine makes an ideal pairing to a balanced sports coupe with its linear power delivery that allows easier control and exhilaration behind the wheel.
    The engine in the LC 500 uses a dual intake inlet that help improve breathing and allow the engine to produce its fantastic sound. The new coupe features an active exhaust that opens baffles in Sport mode to help give the car a more aggressive exhaust note even in start-up. In fact, even when the vehicle is in Normal mode the exhaust baffles open above 3500 rpm. During acceleration, a Sound Generator involving tuned acoustic plumbing enhances the engine’s raucous melody into an aural thunder that helps distinguish the LC 500 in its competitive segment.
    Helping power transfer to the rear wheels is a newly developed 10-speed automatic transmission—the first ever in a luxury automobile—with shift times rivaling those of a dual-clutch transmission. The component is smaller and lighter than some current 8-speed transmissions. The wide bandwidth of shifting afforded by 10 closely spaced gears is ideal for all forms of driving, providing an optimal gear in all conditions. This transmission is matched to a new electric control system with software that helps anticipate the driver’s inputs by monitoring acceleration, braking and lateral g forces.
    The new transmission is just one key element in a vehicle that has had all of its dynamic control elements such as power application, braking, and steering tuned to operate rhythmically in sport driving conditions. Drivers will feel the controlled balance between the quick, smooth shifting actions, the application of linear engine power, and the deceleration afforded by 6-piston front brake calipers (4-piston at rear).
    All of the platform and drivetrain engineering helped endow the LC 500 with performance and agility uncommon for a four-person coupe; the vehicle targets a 0 to 60 mph time of less than 4.5 seconds.
    Interior Electronics
    This flagship coupe will debut the 2017 Lexus Multimedia package that will feature updated, faster, more flexible software enabling future enhancements and a more inviting graphic user interface. Occupants also will be treated to an exceptional audio experience inside the cabin: in addition to the available audiophile-worthy Mark Levinson audio package, a new premium Pioneer audio system comes as standard equipment. Pioneer’s sound engineers worked in collaboration with LC 500 body and cabin designers to enhance interior sound performance within the cabin, studying the acoustic environment and driving structural changes to enhance sound performance.
    The LC 500 also will boast Lexus’ renowned safety technology, Lexus Safety System + , which integrates several of Lexus's active safety technologies: an All-speed Dynamic Radar Cruise Control (All-speed DRCC) that relieves stop-and-go traffic stress, the Pre-Collision System (PCS) helps prevent and mitigate collisions; Lane Keep Assist (LKA) helps prevent vehicles from departing from their lanes; and Automatic High Beam (AHB) that helps ensure optimal forward visibility during nighttime driving.
    These technologies are part of a multi-faceted approach to active safety, the Lexus Safety System + package, and combines millimeter-wave radar with a camera to help achieve a high level of system reliability and performance.

    William Maley

    Honda Reveals What They'll Be Showing At Detroit

    Honda's showing for the upcoming Detroit Auto Show will be the 2017 Ridgeline pickup and today, the automaker released a teaser shot. Our first thought when we saw the picture was: Yep, that's a truck.
    Ok, maybe we are being somewhat snarky here. But it looks likes Honda is going for more of a truck shape than the previous Ridgeline.
    "Ridgeline will deliver everything you'd expect in a Honda from incredible packaging and fuel-efficiency to top safety technologies and innovative, segment-first features," said Jeff Conrad, senior vice president and general manager of the Honda Division.
    We'll have more details when the Ridgeline debuts on January 11th.
    Source: Honda
    Press Release is on Page 2

    Honda Accelerates Sweeping Light Truck Makeover with New Ridgeline Pickup Set for Global Debut at the 2016 North American International Auto Show
    Dec 18, 2015 - TORRANCE, Calif
    Honda will challenge conventional thinking in the midsize pickup segment with the return of the Honda Ridgeline truck, set to make its world debut at the 2016 North American International Auto Show in Detroit on Monday, January 11 at 1:15 p.m. EST. Designed, developed and manufactured in America, the all-new Ridgeline is the fourth new or significantly refreshed light truck model introduced by Honda in the past 18 months and will hit roads nationwide in the first half of next year.
    "We developed this new Honda Ridgeline to offer something new and fundamentally better suited to the way many buyers use their truck," said Jeff Conrad, senior vice president and general manager of the Honda Division. "Ridgeline will deliver everything you'd expect in a Honda from incredible packaging and fuel-efficiency to top safety technologies and innovative, segment-first features. We're honored to once again debut the Ridgeline in Detroit at the North American International Auto Show."
    Honda began the complete remake of its light-truck lineup in the fall of 2014 with the freshened 2015 Honda CR-V, America's best selling SUV. Earlier this year, Honda launched the all-new HR-V crossover, gateway to the Honda truck lineup, and the third generation of its popular Pilot three-row SUV. In 2016, Honda will continue the strengthening of its light-truck family of vehicles with the new Ridgeline and a fully redesigned Odyssey minivan.
    Calendar year 2015 sales of Honda light trucks are up 11.8 percent to 599,507 vehicles through the end of November and are on track to set a new all-time sales record for the brand, beating the previous best of 602,123 units in 2006.
    Like the first generation Ridgeline, which also debuted at NAIAS in 2005, the all-new Ridgeline was designed and developed by Honda R&D Americas, Inc., in its Torrance, California design studio and Raymond, Ohio, research and development center. The Ridgeline and its engine will be producedi by Honda Manufacturing of Alabama, Inc., in Lincoln, Alabama.

    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

    Here is what else made their debut at the Detroit Auto Show today

    Detroit is turning out to be a somewhat busy show with introductions seemingly every moment. But alas, we (Drew and myself) can't be at all of the press conferences. So this will be a summary of the other vehicles we didn't get the chance to see when they were revealed. We'll be updating this as the day goes on.
    Audi had two big showings for Detroit. First was the North American introduction of A4. When it goes on sale in the spring, it will come with a turbocharged 2.0L with 252 horsepower and 273 pound-feet of torque. A seven-speed dual clutch automatic routes power to either the front or all four wheels via the optional quattro system. Pricing starts at $38,250 with a $950 destination charge.

    There will also be A4 wagon for the U.S. in the form of the A4 Allroad. The Allroad sets itself apart from the standard A4 with an increase of 1.3 inches in overall ground clearance, skid plates, flared out fenders, and a set of roof rails. For European markets, there will be a range of gas and diesel engines ranging from 150 to 272 horsepower. No word on what the U.S. will get, but it would be safe to assume the turbo 2.0L from the A4. The A4 Allroad arrives in European dealers this summer, with the U.S. following sometime after. 
    Then there was the h-tron concept. Looking somewhat similar to the e-tron quattro concept from last year, the h-tron features a 110 kW fuel cell powertrain with an electric motor on each axle. There is also a battery can add an additional 100 kW temporarily. Audi says the concept has a theoretical 0-60 MPH time of seven seconds and a range of 373 miles.

    Ford made some big headlines this morning with the reveal of the 2017 Fusion and Raptor. We'll start with the Fusion. As we saw in spy shots last week, Ford did some minor changes to the Fusion's exterior with a new grille and headlights being the big changes. Inside, a new rotary gear shift and SYNC 3 come as standard. The Fusion Hybrid and Energi get new software which is expected to improve efficiency, though Ford isn't saying how much. 
    But the big news is the introduction of two new trims; Sport and Platinum. Sport is rumored high-performance Fusion with a twin-turbo 2.7L V6 delivering 325 horsepower and 350 pound-feet of torque. All-wheel drive will come standard. Meanwhile, the Platinum trim sits above the Titanium and boasts a new grille, nineteen-inch wheels, and cocoa and Venetian leathers.
    The 2017 Fusion arrives at dealers this summer.
    Also making its debut for Ford was the Raptor Supercrew. The Supercrew is mostly the same as the standard extended cab model except in wheelbase. The Supercrew is about a foot longer to make room for the extra rear doors. The Raptor also boasts a Terrain Management System which allows the driver to choose from six different modes for various environments.
    Ford is still keeping quiet on performance figures and pricing till the launch which is expected to happen in the fall.

    Infiniti came next with the 2017 Q60 Coupe. As spy shots revealed last month, the production version of the Q60 keeps many of the design cues found on the concept from last year. Two engines will be on offer. 2.0L Turbocharged, Direct-Injected Four-Cylinder with 208 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. 3.0L Twin-Turbo V6 with 300 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque or 400 horsepower and 350 pound-feet of torque.

    Either engine comes with only a seven-speed automatic (sorry manual fans).
    Infiniti's second-generation Direct Adaptive Steering system is optional on V6 models. Standard for V6 models is Infiniti's Rack Electronic Power Steering system that increase the effort to turn the wheel in cornering. Four-cylinder models stick with a speed-sensitive rack-and-pinion setup.
    The Q60 Coupe arrives at dealers this summer.
    You can follow all of our reports from the 2016 Detroit Auto Show here.

    Drew Dowdell

    Have you ever wanted a luxury crossover sedan? Well Volvo is bringing out a sedan version of its V60 Cross Country just for you.

    The words "bold" and "Volvo" don't normally go together, but when an auto maker effectively starts a new segment, you have to call the move bold regardless of its eventual success. Ahead of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit next week, Volvo took the wraps off the S60 Cross Country. What is bold about it? Well, it is a crossover luxury sedan. The wagon version, the V60 Cross Country, was revealed in November 2014 at the LA Auto Show.
    The S60 Cross Country effectively increases the luxury crossover sedan segment count from zero to one. The S60 CC takes the standard S60 and gives it a 2.5 inch lift in ride height and makes AWD standard in the US market. (In Europe and other select markets the S60 CC will be available in FWD). The Cross Country will launch with the familiar T5 engine, a 2.5 liter turbo-charged 5-cylinder producing 250 horsepower.
    Subaru tried a similar concept in the family car market, selling a sedan version of its popular Legacy Outback on and off from 1998 - 2007, but met with little success. In the luxury market however, every automaker is fighting to find its niche. Volvo going off the beaten path may be just their ticket to success.

    The Volvo S60 Cross Country will be shown at the Detroit Auto Show on January 12th, 2015 at 2:55pm eastern. We will be on hand to bring you more updates from the show floor.
    You can sign up to follow all the stories from Detroithere, or follow us onFacebook, Twitter, andGoogle+
    Press release on page 2
    Source: Volvo Media
    Volvo takes Cross Country brand into sedan territory
    Volvo Cars points to the future with the new S60 Cross Country
    A segment first from Volvo Cars
    Builds on a strong heritage of lifestyle-oriented products

    Volvo Cars is stepping up to meet the demands of its core customers with the unveiling of the exciting S60 Cross Country at the Detroit Auto Show.
    Back in 1997, when Volvo was the first premium brand to introduce an all-road capable variant of its successful wagons, no one could predict the future success of the crossover concept. Today, the crossover is ubiquitous and has helped to define a whole new category of lifestyle vehicle. Volvo is once again taking a bold step forward – this time in the luxury sedan segment – with the unveiling of the S60 Cross Country – the first premium sedan with the same level of capability and rugged design cues of the renowned Cross Country wagons.
    “We want to further explore the market with our Cross Country brand. We did this back in 1997 with the V70 Cross Country and it led to the birth of a whole new segment. We have included all the capability-driven benefits of the Cross Country brand in this new model, while offering a completely unique expression of adventure and all-road readiness in a distinctly sporty and stylish package,” said Lex Kerssemakers, Senior Vice President Product Strategy and Vehicle Line Management at Volvo Cars.
    Capable stance
    Like the recently introduced V60 Cross Country, the S60 Cross Country shares an increased ride height of 65mm (2.5 inches) and comes with the same capable All-Wheel Drive underpinnings of its sibling, making it the only truly capable and stylish all-road sedan crossover on the market. The S60 Cross Country will also be delivered with front-wheel drive in Europe and selected markets.
    “The S60 Cross Country is the sole contender in the luxury crossover sedan segment. We have identified a clear niche in the market for a more capable sedan with rugged styling cues and a higher stance. The S60 Cross Country will appeal to people that are searching for an exciting and capable sedan, whilst enjoying the clear benefits that a crossover offers,” said Alain Visser, Senior Vice President Sales, Marketing and Customer Service.
    Reflecting Volvo’s legendary capability of nature and Scandinavian heritage, the S60 Cross Country offers both 18” and 19” wheels with high profile tires that add both comfort and all-road aesthetics, reduce road noise, and add increased wheel protection when needed for city or country.
    Delivering an involved and focused driving experience with rugged substance, this dynamic design brings a sporty and adventurous edge to the sedan.
    The S60 Cross Country will launch with a powerful T5 All-Wheel Drive gasoline powertrain delivering up to 250 bhp* available in the US, Canada, Russia and Europe. The S60 Cross Country is expected to be available on a limited basis this summer.

    William Maley

    Finally! The Audi Q3 is coming to the U.S.!

    We've been waiting a while for the Audi Q3 to arrive in the U.S. But next week at the Detroit Auto Show, Audi will reveal the 2015 Q3 that will be going on sale in the third quarter of this year.
    Now as reported back in October, Audi wanted the Q3 to be classified as a light truck. However, the model didn't meet certain criteria such as approach angle. The company decided to a mid-cycle refresh to perform these changes and the result is the 2015 Q3.
    Looking like a Audi Q5 hit with a shrink ray, the Q3 will be the smallest crossover in Audi's lineup, ready to take on the likes of the BMW X1, Buick Encore, and Mercedes-Benz GLA-Class. Power will come from a turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder with 200 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque paired with a six-speed automatic. Front-wheel drive is standard, with quattro all-wheel drive on the option list.
    Standard equipment is very generous on Q3 with electronic stability control with offroad and hill descent settings, eighteen-inch wheels, panoramic sunroof, xenon headlights, power-adjustable front seats with heating, and leather. The option list for the Q3 features such items as navigation, Bose sound system, and a power tailgate.
    Source: Audi
    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
    Audi enters the premium compact class of SUVs with the sporty and versatile new 2015 Q3
    Q3 will join the already successful family of Audi SUVs that includes the Q5 and Q7
    Q3 showcases many of the luxury and technology features found in the full-size vehicles offered by Audi
    Available Fall of 2014 with a 200 hp 2.0-liter TFSI® engine and front-wheel drive and available Audi quattro® all-wheel drive

    The new 2015 Audi Q3 will arrive in the U.S. in the Fall of 2014 and will join the already successful lineup of Audi SUVs that includes the Q5 and Q7. It will make its U.S. debut at the North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit on January 13th. The Q3 is a premium, compact SUV that pairs coupe-like looks with the utility of a SUV. Its quality engineering and advanced features offer ideal performance and functionality, but also advanced technology and driving dynamics.
    "Coming off the recent A3 family announcement we are now for the first time entering into the premium compact class of SUVs with the introduction of the Audi Q3 into our line-up," said Scott Keogh, President, Audi of America. "Our growing SUV family will now offer three distinct products in the premium SUV category; and like the successful Q5 and Q7, the Q3 will continue with the established standards they started with regards to utility, technology, craftsmanship and performance."
    Standard Features
    The Audi Q3 comes generously appointed with a long list of standard equipment, including:
    200 hp 2.0-liter TFSI® engine with six-speed Tiptronic® transmission
    Panoramic sunroof with power retractable sunshade
    Audi xenon plus front lighting with LED DRLs and taillights
    Heated, 12-way power front seats
    Leather seating surfaces
    Audi advanced key

    Design and Body
    The Audi Q3 model's coupe-like lines are an expression of its sporty character. This is demonstrated by:
    Low roof line, flat D-pillars, and a wraparound tailgate
    Distinctive exterior lighting
    Sharply drawn lines on the flanks frame athletically arched sheet metal surfaces - the defining shadow contour is the Tornado line
    The housings of the side mirrors sport LED turn signals
    Both the hood and tailgate are made of aluminum
    The signature, wedge-shaped headlights house xenon plus lighting and LED daytime running lights, which are combined with LED taillights, all standard
    The available power tailgate opens electrically, including via the remote key fob, and swings up to accommodate the spacious cargo area

    The interior of the Audi Q3 is spacious and comfortable for all five passengers. Its elegant, ergonomic design boasts superior build quality. Evidence of the premium character of the Audi Q3 can be seen in every last detail in the interior craftsmanship, in the selection of the materials, in their processing and in the tight, consistent interior gaps.
    The cargo area offers a base luggage capacity of 16.2 cu ft. Folding down the split rear seatbacks increases this capacity to 48.2 cu ft.
    Standard LED interior lighting – a technology that bathes the interior in dramatic light
    Efficient white light-emitting diodes illuminate the doors, foot wells, vanity mirrors, storage compartments and the air vent thumb wheels. LED light guides even accentuate the cup holders
    When equipped with the BOSE Surround Sound system, the frames of the woofer/mid-range speakers in the front doors form elegant rings of white light
    The Q3 comes standard with two front airbags, thorax-pelvis side airbags in the backs of the front seats and side curtain head airbags. Safety belt tensioners up front, belt force limiters and the integral Audi head restraint system. Rear side airbags are optional.

    Powertrain and Performance
    The standard 2.0 TFSI four-cylinder engine in the Q3 produces 200hp and 207 lb-ft. of torque.
    Standard six-speed Tiptronic® transmission
    Front wheel drive standard, Audi quattro® permanent all-wheel drive available
    Optional Audi drive select system - allows drivers to adjust handling and response at the touch of a button. There are three drive select modes: Comfort, Dynamic, and Auto.

    Chassis and Suspension
    The Q3 brings more sportiness to the compact premium SUV class. Its balanced chassis combines agile handling, supreme safety and great road comfort.
    The Q3 model's front suspension is a sophisticated design featuring McPherson struts with forged aluminum lower wishbones. The rear includes a four-link rear axle with a separate spring/shock absorber arrangement to maximize interior cargo space.
    Electromechanical power steering with speed-dependent power assist
    ESC with offroad mode and hill descent assist
    Standard 18-inch wheel with optional 19-inch design available

    Available Equipment
    The Q3 showcases many aspects of Audi expertise found in our full-size luxury vehicles and makes that content and technological prowess available in a premium compact SUV.
    Sport package including front sport seats with adjustable thigh support
    Driver Assistance package including Audi side assist and Audi parking system with rearview camera
    Audi MMI navigation plus with 7.0-inch color monitor
    Power tailgate with a programmable preset opening angle
    The Prestige trim package includes extended infotainment and convenience features including Audi connect®
    Audi side assist uses radar to help make changing lanes easier
    BOSE Surround Sound system. This system features a ten-channel receiver delivering 465 watts of power to 14 speakers

    Audi connect®
    The 2015 Audi Q3 features the award-winning infotainment system, Audi connect®, when the Prestige trim package is ordered.
    Factory-fitted, in-vehicle Wi-Fi connectivity for passenger use, enabling the Audi connect system to deliver connectivity to up to eight wireless devices for passengers.
    The on-board Audi MMI navigation plus system is enhanced with Google Earth™ maps for a true aerial view of the route.
    Audi connect also features real-time localized weather, news and live fuel prices
    Google Voice™ Local Search for detailed information about travel destinations, such as restaurant or hotel hours, pricing and customer reviews
    myAudi Destination feature, which allows users to log on to Google Earth from virtually any location in the U.S. and download up to 50 destinations to the vehicle
    Audi also offers real-time Sirius XM® Traffic information via enhancements to the Audi MMI Navigation plus system (active Sirius XM® Traffic subscription required).

    William Maley

    Diesel Comes To the Range Rover and Range Rover Sport

    Aside from Buick's Avenir, the other big surprise on the eve of the Detroit Auto Show comes from Land Rover. The company at an event tonight announced that it will be offering a diesel for the Range Rover and Rover Sport for the 2016 model year.
    The diesel engine is the turbocharged 3.0L V6 producing 254 horsepower and 440 pound-feet of torque. This will come paired up to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Land Rover claims fuel economy figures of 22 City/28 Highway/25 Combined and a total highway range of 658 miles, the distance it would take to drive from New York City to Detroit. Acceleration is a hair slower than the 3.0L Supercharged V6 counterpart:
    Range Rover Sport: 7.1 seconds (Td6) vs. 6.9 seconds (Supercharged V6)
    Range Rover: 7.4 seconds (Td6) vs. 7.1 seconds (Supercharged V6)
    Like many of its German compatriots, the 3.0L diesel will utilize Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) to help reduce NoX emissions.
    Now Land Rover has said more diesel models are incoming for the U.S. in the near future. In the meantime, the Range Rover and Range Rover diesels arrive at dealers this fall.
    Source: Land Rover
    You can sign up to follow all the stories from Detroit here, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.

    Press Release is on Page 2
    2016 model year Range Rover Td6 and Range Rover Sport Td6 diesels to deliver 32 percent increased combined fuel economy; 28 miles per gallon on the highway
    Diesel vehicles to debut at 2015 North American International Auto Show
    Diesel technology to be available across Land Rover lineup in coming years

    (MAHWAH, NJ) - January 11, 2015 - Land Rover will offer consumers the option of fuel efficient diesel powertrains in two 2016 model year luxury SUVs, the Range Rover and Range Rover Sport. The Range Rover Td6 and Range Rover Sport Td6 SUVs will deliver 25 miles per gallon combined, a 32 percent improvement over the supercharged V6, and reach a high of 28 miles per gallon on the highway.
    The two new luxury diesel SUVs debuted at the 2015 North American International Auto Show and go on sale Fall 2015.
    Land Rover has employed a combination of new and proven innovative technologies to bring North American customers an engine with exceptional refinement, efficiency and performance.
    The 3.0-liter Td6 turbocharged V6 diesel engine delivers effortless performance thanks to 254 horsepower and a low-end torque output of 440 lb-ft. Peak torque arrives at 1,750rpm in the Td6 while the gasoline V6 produces its 332 lb-ft (450 Nm) at 3,500 rpm. This high torque output at low RPM, makes the diesel Range Rover and Range Rover Sport models particularly well suited to towing heavy loads and off-roading where reaching maximum torque at low RPM is extremely beneficial.
    Similarly, the low-end torque of the Td6 allows the vehicles to deliver 0-60 acceleration times comparable to the higher horsepower V6 gasoline models. The Range Rover Sport Td6 and Range Rover Td6 accelerate from 0-60mph in 7.1 and 7.4 seconds respectively, compared to 6.9 and 7.1 seconds for gasoline V6 models.
    Preliminary fuel economy figures for the Range Rover Sport and Range Rover of 22 mpg (city), 28 mpg (highway) and 25 mpg (combined) represent significant gains over traditional gasoline alternatives. The combined figure equates to a 32 percent improvement over the gasoline V6 engine. Total range increases to 658 miles, a gain of 8.0% for the Range Rover Sport and 3.3% for the Range Rover.
    These improvements underline a dedication to meeting and exceeding the expectations of luxury SUV consumers. Both the Range Rover and Range Rover Sport have seen significant advancement in fuel efficiency, safety, and design. As part of a complete model redesign for the 2013 and 2014 model years, the Range Rover and Range Rover Sport respectively, have moved to all-aluminum platforms, gained the option of V6 engines and have had significant design changes in an effort to continuously improve Land Rover product offerings. With the addition of Td6, we are advancing these vehicles even further.
    Designed from the ground up, the Td6 provides efficiency and refinement. Its block is constructed using Compacted Graphite Iron (CGI), which has a higher tensile strength than standard grey cast iron, better fatigue strength than aluminum, and added stiffness. Its overall advantages in weight and strength mean the block can be lighter and smaller which make it compact in size. The deep-skirted, cross-bolted design and one-piece structural aluminum oil sump of the Td6 help the engine to absorb combustion noise effectively which improves refinement.
    Prior to its introduction in the US, improvements have been made to the Td6 helping to achieve an additional eight percent increase in overall fuel efficiency. These include the addition of a water-cooled turbocharger for maximum performance and durability at high operating temperatures; and new ball bearings, vanes and nozzles to improve efficiency.
    A Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) system uses Diesel Exhaust Fluid (DEF) to reduce NOx emissions, ensuring the Td6 achieves US LEV 3 status. The DEF is injected into the exhaust and, as the resulting mixture passes through the SCR, NOx is turned into harmless nitrogen gas.
    The reservoir for the DEF is located in two areas, the main is under the floor with the secondary located under the hood. Combined they hold enough fluid for approximately 10,000 miles. Diesel exhaust fluid is commercially available and owners can top the fluid level up themselves or take it to their nearest Land Rover dealer if the reservoir needs replenishing.
    In addition to the cleansing efficiency of the SCR, every aspect of the Td6 engine has been optimized to ensure emissions are as low as possible. This includes the new Low Pressure EGR system which has been critical to success of Td6 emission ratings and further improves fuel economy.
    Unlike traditional High Pressure EGR systems, which recirculate gases directly from the exhaust manifold to inlet manifold at high pressure, the revised design takes gases at low pressure - after the DPF filter in the exhaust pipe - and feeds them back to the turbocharger inlet. From here they pass through an intercooler, resulting in a lower peak combustion temperature.
    The higher the peak combustion temperature, the more NOx is produced, so the low pressure EGR system has the effect of reducing the harmful emissions contained by exhaust gases, by lowering the peak combustion temperature and improving efficiency.
    Elsewhere, a two-stage oil pump reduces engine losses while a revised design for the fuel-injectors has been introduced to improve efficiency and reduce hydrocarbon emissions. The injection cycle also employs an innovative two-stage process to eliminate the traditional 'knock' associated with diesel engines.
    Attention to detail ensures diesel derivatives deliver traditional Range Rover refinement. Innovative dual-isolation engine mounts, as well as windshields featuring a special acoustic laminate, help reduce noise levels. Refinement on Range Rover models is further enhanced by the design of the bulkhead between the engine and vehicle interior, which minimizes the transmission of engine noise into the cabin.
    The fuel filler neck on diesel Land Rover vehicles is fitted with a misfueling protection device. This device will prevent the narrower gasoline fuel nozzle fitted to gasoline pumps from being inserted into the filler neck on the vehicle, reducing the likelihood of adding the wrong fuel.
    Tested and Proven in the USA
    The latest Td6 diesel has been tested extensively to ensure it meets the expectations of US buyers. Early in the development process Land Rover conducted test drive clinics with premium SUV buyers to determine whether customers would notice a difference between the driving feel of diesel versus gasoline models.
    Without informing participants that they'd be driving diesel models, the Land Rover team gathered feedback using in-vehicle video and audio recordings, data loggers and post-drive interviews. The results of the program were conclusive; consumers participating in testing clinics in major US cities could not identify if they were driving a diesel vehicle during a 30-minute test drive.
    Land Rover engineers embarked on US testing schedule to ensure the new diesel engine could handle all US climate and terrain conditions. By the time US sales have begun, the test fleet will have completed one million test miles.
    The test fleet has targeted the most extreme climates and diverse terrains imaginable across the US. The new Range Rover and Range Rover Sport diesel have navigated from sea level to altitudes of 14,000 feet during the grueling test program. To meet the unique demands of the North American climate, engineers have undertaken testing year round, from the coldest winter days in Minnesota, to summertime in the deserts of the Southwest.

    Drew Dowdell

    Chrysler brings their mid-size entry into the 21st century.

    Chrysler today unveiled the all new Chrysler 200 sedan at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. The new 200 rides on a new platform shared with the smaller Dodge Dart but features a host of available technologies not offered on its lesser sibling.
    The biggest upgrade is the optional 3.6 liter Pentastar V6 which produces 295 horsepower and 265 lb-ft of torque. Standard on all trim levels is a segment first 9-speed automatic transmission. Also optional is an AWD system that can decouple the drive line both at the center drive shaft and at the rear axle to virtually eliminate parasitic losses in fuel economy. The system automatically couples in and out of service as needed. In the 200s trim equipped with the V6, the AWD system can be placed into sport mode which funnels more torque to the rear wheels for spirited driving.
    For those who favor more MPGs rather than faster 0-60 times, the base engine is a 2.4 liter TigerShark Multi-air engine with a preliminary highway fuel economy rating of 35 mile per gallon. This engine produces 183 horsepower and 173 lb-ft of torque.
    Inside, the 200s and 200c feature a very fluid dash design with available open pore wood accents and sculpted leather seats. The gear selector is now a rotary knob and move forward on to the base of the dash, this allows Chrysler to open up the center console to new ways to arrange storage.
    The biggest news may be on price. Pricing for the 2015 Chrysler 200 starts at $21,700 for the base model, $95 lower than the outgoing 200.
    The 200 is set to go on sale in the 2nd quarter of 2014.

    Press release on page 2

    2015 Chrysler 200
    Inspired American Design and Beautifully Crafted Inside and Out,
    the All-new 2015 Chrysler 200 Sedan Charts a New Course for the Chrysler Brand,
    As Well As the Mid-size Sedan Segment, Captivating Drivers and Passengers Alike

    All-new 2015 Chrysler 200 debuts the new “face” of the Chrysler brand with a confident and instantly recognizable unified grille and headlamp graphic that prominently features the centralized Chrysler wing badge
    Elegant forms, sensual lines and fluid surfaces highlight the coupe-like appearance of the all-new 2015 Chrysler 200
    The athletic exterior has a soulful presence; the all-new Chrysler 200 is a strong, timeless design that drivers will want to touch and feel
    A signature light pipe or full-LED daytime running lamps (DRL), LED fog lamps and standard LED tail lamps give the all-new Chrysler 200 a distinctive, recognizable look coming or going
    Inspired by classic American design, the interior of the all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 features clean, expressive surfaces and is inviting and comfortable, rewarding drivers and passengers on daily commutes as well as longer journeys
    Well-crafted components offer world-class levels of fit and finish, furniture-like operating precision and attention to detail
    All-new 2015 Chrysler 200 sedan is loaded with state-of-the-art, easy-to-use high-tech features and thoughtful amenities that will surprise and delight customers

    2015 Chrysler 200 Exterior design
    An exquisite yet simple exterior design featuring sensuous lines and the new “face” of Chrysler, and an elegant, well-crafted interior are the hallmarks of the all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 mid-size sedan.
    Clean lines and expressive surfaces highlight the coupe-like appearance of the all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 exterior. Inspired by nature and classic American design – Chris Craft boats and Airstream travel trailers – the 2015 Chrysler 200 sedan with its athletic yet soulful presence, has a strong, sculptural exterior that drivers will want to touch and feel. It’s a timeless design based on simple elegance.
    “The all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 redefines the exterior design philosophy for the Chrysler brand. We developed an elegant composition of forms that feature clean yet expressive surfaces,” said Brandon Faurote, Head of Chrysler Brand Design – Chrysler Group LLC. “The 2015 Chrysler 200 is the debut of the new face of Chrysler which is confidently American. It features a new signature design element that cradles the proudly displayed Chrysler wing badge and travels visually into the headlamps. The coupe-like silhouette flows seamlessly into the deck lid and conveys a sense of speed for a very dramatic, emotional appeal.”
    The all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 has a simple, elegant, coupe-like silhouette; a few key lines wrap around the vehicle. It’s a sculptural design that conveys the essence of the long, drawn-out forms that were found on Chrysler coupes in the 1960s. A unified front graphic, the horizontal design orientation with sculpted body sides and a body line that wraps around the car ties the design together for a singular, flowing aesthetic.
    The front of the new 200 debuts the new “face of Chrysler” with a unified look that integrates the grille and headlamps for the first time with a Mobius strip-inspired design that’s enhanced by a dynamic grille texture, providing a unique 3-dimensional effect. The central hood forms align and emphasize the new floating Chrysler wing and the Mobius strip repeats the wing shape, further celebrating the Chrysler brand identity.
    A signature light pipe or available full-LED daytime running lamps (DRL), LED fog lamps and standard LED tail lamps give the all-new Chrysler 200 a distinctive, recognizable look coming or going. The new DRL debuts a new shape for the 200, starting in the top corner, moving down and then inward, artfully wrapping around the headlamps. The LED package delivers crisp, clean white lighting in all forward lighting positions.
    Bright accents visually tie together the available fog lamps in the front and dual exhausts in the rear fascia, as well as the front and rear of the sedan for a harmonious exterior appearance.
    2015 Chrysler 200 LX, Limited and C models all feature bright trim in the upper and lower grille of the front fascia, daylight opening (DLO), the area surrounding the side windows, and rear fascia.
    The 2015 Chrysler 200’s athletic form is highlighted by wide “shoulders” and balanced width, resulting in the most aerodynamic vehicle in the mid-size sedan segment, delivering owners both beauty and purpose.
    The mirrors are beautifully sculpted and flow seamlessly off the pillars, and are complemented with beautifully refined door handles that feature a subtle, refined bright accent.
    The rear of the all-new 2015 200 has a wide stance, an integrated spoiler and bright trim in the lower rear fascia. The exhaust tips are mounted-in-fascia, delivering precise fit and finish.
    Dynamic and vibrant exterior colors build upon the fluid, muscular design cues for an unexpected-in-the-segment aesthetic – one of quiet confidence. Colors such as Velvet Red Pearl Coat, Vivid Blue Pearl Coat, Ceramic Blue Clear Coat and Lunar White Tri-Coat add an air of confidence on the new 2015 Chrysler 200.
    No detail was overlooked in the design of the all-new 200 sedan. The wheels were specifically designed for the all-new 200 and feature shapes that blend sensual forms with technical precision. The expressive split, five-spoke design complements the vehicle perfectly. The unique design features on the tail lamps not only have a great aesthetic, but also aid in the best-in-class aerodynamics the 2015 200 delivers. The “200” badge has been updated with a cleaner, more contemporary look.
    The 2015 Chrysler 200S model continues the successful S model design DNA by delivering an exclusive look – darker, more sinister – not found on other models in the lineup. The S model in the outgoing vehicle accounted for roughly 25 percent of sales while attracting a younger, more affluent customer.
    The exclusive appearance of the 2015 200S models starts with gloss black trim and accents, rather than the bright trim found on other models in the lineup. The DLO surround/molding is finished in high gloss black as well. Integrated dual exhausts are standard on the S model. The available 19-inch Hyper Black aluminum wheels complete the look. The 200S model’s sinister look and feel complements the sportier driving experience the S model delivers.
    From a distance, the exterior of the all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 is impactful and beautiful, and the engaging design is truly appreciated from up close, where the humanistic design forms and precisely-crafted details are truly valued.
    The 2015 Chrysler 200 is available in the United States in four different models and will arrive in volume in dealer showrooms in the second quarter, 2014. Customers can choose from the 2015 Chrysler 200 LX model, Chrysler Limited model, Chrysler S model and the premium Chrysler 200C.
    The all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 sedan will offer consumers 11 different exterior color choices from which to choose: Velvet Red Pearl Coat, Lunar White Pearl Tri-coat, Phantom Black Pearl Tri-coat (late availability), Vivid Blue Pearl Coat, Crystal Blue Pearl Coat, Granite Crystal Metallic Clear Coat, Luxury Brown Pearl Coat, Billet Silver Metallic Clear Coat, Black Clear Coat, Bright White Clear Coat and Ceramic Blue Clear Coat (late availability).
    2015 Chrysler 200 interior design
    The inspiration for the all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 interior was classic American design – the Eames lounge chair, the iPhone, Airstream travel trailers – designs that use materials in an honest way, whether it is formed wood, or smooth molded metal in clean, sleek designs.
    The interior of the 200 draws the eye to clean, expressive surfaces. It’s inviting, comfortable and rewards drivers and passengers on daily commutes as well as longer journeys.
    The all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 interior is a sophisticated blend of hand-sculpted fluid shapes, high-quality materials, innovative material choices, precision craftsmanship, state-of-the-art technology and thoughtful, clever features.
    “The all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 offered us a blank canvas with which to design the interior. We looked at iconic American design and craftsmanship for our inspiration because Chrysler is a classic American brand,” said Klaus Busse, Head of Interior Design. “Formed wood, used as an integral element of the design is what captured our attention and inspired us. Customers can see an example of this approach in the open pore wood trim in the new 200; it’s not just decoration, but a structural element that visually ‘holds’ the components and the instrument panel itself in place.”
    The 2015 Chrysler 200 interior was designed using four key principles:
    Make an emotional design impact
    Use high-quality materials
    Include state-of-the-art technology
    Develop clever storage features that use the interior space wisely

    Emotional design
    When Chrysler designers started work on the all-new interior of the 2015 200 sedan, they envisioned using unique elements to create an interior identity that was distinctly American and enveloped the drivers and passengers in an inviting and comfortable yet beautiful interior.
    The interior has a “wow” factor. It’s a striking appearance, one of contemporary luxury but with graceful movement. Hand-sculpted, fluid shapes and clean, expressive surfaces are found throughout the cabin. The fluid shapes carry from the instrument panel around to the door panels. The available open-pore wood trim was designed to visually “hold” the instrument panel in place.
    The clean lines of the dash are highlighted by the floating island bezel and the soft blue glow surrounding the gauges in the instrument panel. The components of the instrument panel are integrated in the design for a finished product that is solid and timeless. The instrument panel’s sleek appearance is juxtaposed with the architectural detail of the air vents, evoking the exposed structure of a building or vertebrae in a skeleton.
    The well-crafted components in the interior deliver world-class levels of fit and finish for drivers and passengers alike. Furniture-like mechanisms such as the sliding cup holders in the innovative center console are sturdy, yet operate smoothly.
    The 2015 Chrysler 200 sports the newly designed corporate steering wheel with audio, voice and speed controls. It’s ergonomic and intuitive, adding a new level of technical sophistication to the 200 sedan. For the first time in a Chrysler mid-size sedan, paddle shifters are available for the driver who wants a more spirited driving experience.
    The centerpiece of the new 200 interior is the innovative center console. The contemporary design is pleasing to look at while offering clever functionality that is enabled by full electronic gear shifting with a rotary shift knob. This leading-edge technology doesn’t need the mechanical pieces of traditional shifters that take up space in the center of the vehicle, enabling Chrysler designers to fully utilize the space.
    A pass-through storage area at the front of the console is accessible by both the driver and front-seat passenger. A thoughtful opening at the rear of the pass-through storage area allows for wires and cables to directly connect to the power supply and media center located in the center console.
    The all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 center console includes an innovative sliding cup holder with smooth, furniture-like movement. The sliding function allows drivers and passengers to use the space in a way that best fits their needs.
    The all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 sedan is available with three interior choices inspired by the diverse, iconic American urban landscape.
    Fifth Avenue in New York City was the inspiration for the black interiors. The City of New York represents a unique attitude – the city that never sleeps. It’s high fashion with a rock and roll edge. Edgy, yet classy. The Fifth Avenue interior is black and features black monotone embossed fabric cloth seating or black leather seating with a linen headliner, Satin Chrome accents and is available on the LX, Limited and 200C models.
    Sausalito, California was the muse for the two-tone Linen and Black interior. The spirit of Sausalito inspired Chrysler designers with its different mindset: it’s a city that doesn’t act like a city. The city projects a “oneness” with its environment, a peaceful Zen that is represented by the linen and black interior. With Linen embossed fabric cloth seats or Linen leather seating with a linen headliner, the interior is calming, wrapping drivers and passengers in a comfortable cocoon. Satin chrome accents and black finishes are the final touches for a beautiful, harmonious interior choice. The 2015 Chrysler 200 sedan is the first Chrysler Group vehicle to debut the linen interior option. The Linen and Black cloth interior is available on the LX and Limited models.
    The tenacious, never-say-die spirit of the City of Detroit was the inspiration for the S model’s exclusive Black and Ambassador Blue interior. The interior of the S model embodies the juxtaposition of the City of Detroit – the tenaciousness and never-give-up attitude that created and nurtured world-renowned inventors and craftsmen, a music scene that has inspired generations of artists, and the hard-working people that put the world on wheels with the gritty landscape in parts of the city today. The interior of the 2015 200S model showcases the different personalities by combining cloth and leather materials in the seats and Black and Ambassador Blue colors in the seating and trim. The monotone black cloth and Ambassador Blue leather seating is unique in the segment. Ambassador Blue accents are tastefully placed throughout the black interior in the form of appliques around the door handles, instrument panel bezel and center console. Gloss Black trim and a black headliner completes the look. An optional monotone black leather seating with Ambassador Blue accent stitching is late availability for the 200S model.
    The all-new 2015 Chrysler 200C model features either the Black or Linen and Black interior with standard Nappa leather seating, a Linen headliner, distinctive black and charcoal hydrographic accents and satin chrome trim.
    The wow factor for the all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 sedan is the premium interior package available on the 200C model. The premium package interior captures the essence of the classic American design, featuring Linen perforated Nappa leather seating with bronze piping and bronze accent stitching, real open pore wood trim and warm chrome accents. A unique, two-tone heated steering wheel rounds out the package.
    High-quality materials
    Premium materials abound wherever the customer touches the vehicle – the door uppers, the center armrest and the upper instrument panel. Interior trim that is soft to the touch and pleasing to the eye is found throughout the cabin.
    A vinyl-wrapped instrument panel brow, center console arm rest and front door armrests are standard on all models. Available genuine open-pore wood is formed for the specific use and features a layered-edge treatment.
    Seats in the all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 are ergonomically designed to support the contour of the body, and are trimmed with premium cloth or quality Nappa leather and are available with power adjustable, heated/ventilated seats with memory.
    Unique available features, such as the available two-tone, heated, leather-wrapped steering wheel, heated and/or ventilated front seats and the expansive glove box large enough to hold an iPad or small laptop, will delight drivers and passengers alike.
    State-of-the-art technology
    The all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 was designed with thoughtful, state-of-the-art, high-tech features and amenities that are intuitive and easy to use.
    The world-class thin-film transistor (TFT) 5- or 7-inch full-color reconfigurable instrument cluster allows the driver to enjoy a customized user experience and receive information and vehicle feedback in the format they prefer while keeping their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road.
    The easy-to-use driver information display presents the basic information a customer needs at his or her fingertips but also allows the driver to add the information they desire, similar to an iPhone.
    A multitude of information can be displayed in the center of the gauge cluster, including speed, turn-by-turn navigation, real-time fuel economy, safety warnings, and safety and security functions such as the ParkSense Parallel/Perpendicular Park Assist feature, audio information and trip details.
    The available ParkSense Parallel/Perpendicular Park Assist System (a first for a Chrysler brand vehicle) is displayed in the center of the gauge cluster and operated with buttons on the steering wheel and the shifter. The easy-to-understand graphic walks the driver through the steps necessary to utilize the park assist system. The 2015 Chrysler 200 is the only mid-size sedan to offer the perpendicular park assist feature.
    An available award-winning 8.4-inch touchscreen multimedia command center – the largest in the segment – or the 5-inch touchscreen multimedia command center are attractive, intuitive and easy to use, and are located in the center stack.
    The Uconnect system allows the driver to control the audio, climate controls, heated/ventilated seats and much more from the touchscreen, the redundant controls located on the center stack below the touchscreen or with voice commands. The touchscreen buttons are large and easy-to-see at a glance. The 8.4-inch color touchscreen Uconnect Access is user-friendly and includes Bluetooth connectivity, SiriusXM Radio, navigation, music, apps (Pandora, Aha, iHeartRadio and more), voice-to-text messaging and streaming audio capability. Uconnect Access Via Mobile seamlessly brings four popular Internet radio apps into the Chrysler 200. They are: Aha by Harman, iHeartRadio, Pandora and Slacker. Like all Uconnect-brand features, it is designed to be easy to learn and easy to use.
    A power supply and media center located in the center console provides maximum user convenience.
    A premium sound system is available with nine speakers and a subwoofer.
    Clever storage features
    Thoughtful, clever storage features make the most of the available interior space in the all-new 2015 Chrysler 200.
    The innovative center console is well-thought-out and features a number of user-friendly features. A pass-through storage area at the front of the console is accessible by both the driver and front-seat passenger. A thoughtful opening at the rear of the pass-through storage area allows for wires and cables to directly connect to the power supply and media center located in the center console. An innovative sliding cup holder with smooth, furniture-like movement allows drivers and passengers to use the space in a way that best fits their needs. Covered storage allows passengers to store items out of sight.
    Available door map pockets incorporate beverage holders large enough for 20-ounce bottles.
    Attention to detail is prevalent throughout the all-new Chrysler 200, as no space was overlooked. Surprising details include a rendering of the City of Detroit skyline embossed on the rubber mat in the bottom of the pass-through storage of the center console.

    Drew Dowdell

    Chevrolet will take the wraps off a concept electric car called the Bolt that will have a 200 mile range and a $30,000 price tag aimed squarely between the Nissan Leaf and Tesla Model 3.

    On Monday, Chevrolet will be unveiling the next generation Chevrolet Volt. That car's powertrain will have the familiar Volt setup of an on-board regenerator. In addition to that, Chevrolet will be unveiling a concept car called the Bolt that can travel up to 200 miles on a single charge and has an initial price point of $30,000.
    Though the Bolt is a concept, it is set to go into production for the 2017 model year, so we could see it on the road in as little as 18 months.
    Chevrolet already builds a pure electric version of the Chevrolet Spark. It starts at around $20,000, has a range of 82 miles, and more pound-ft of torque than some full-size pickups, but it is currently only sold in California and Oregon for the sake of complying with those states' zero-emissions laws.
    The Bolt will be different though; General Motors is planning on offering the Bolt nationwide and globally with a particular eye on China with its smog problems. For domestic consumption at least, the Bolt will be built in the US at one of GM's existing plants.
    The $30,000 price point is no accident either. General Motors is targeting two prime targets, the Nissan Leaf which starts at $29,010 and has a 100 mile range, and the coming Tesla Model 3 which is said to be aiming for a $35,000 price point with a 200 mile range. If GM can meet both its price point and range target, the Bolt could become the Goldilocks electric vehicle offering both anxiety-free range and attainable price point.
    The speculation out there says that the Bolt will be a crossover hatchback, but beyond that, technical details are scarce.
    The Bolt will be revealed at a press conference that starts at 7:35am on Monday, January 12th. We will be on hand to bring you updates and pictures from the show floor.
    *Chevrolet Spark EV charge port shown in picture above courtesy of General Motors.
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    Source: Green Car Reports and The Verge

    Drew Dowdell

    Chevrolet takes the insulation off the 2016 Chevrolet Volt extended range electric vehicle.

    At the North American International Auto Show in Detroit today, Chevrolet unveiled the all new 2016 Chevrolet Volt. The biggest news is the increase in EV range from 38 miles to 50 miles and an increased combined range of up to 420 miles on a full battery and full tank of fuel.
    Under the hood is a new 1.5 liter, direct injected 4-cylinder producing 101 horsepower. The battery pack has lost 20 lbs and the range extender has lost 100 lbs. The battery capacity has increased to 18.1 kWh though the number of battery cells has dropped from 288 to 192.
    The Volt now no longer requires premium fuel. There is a new 2-motor drive unit that produces 294 lb-ft of torque. Overall, the Voltec system is now 12% more efficient. Acceleration to 30 mph has improved from 3.2 seconds to 2.6 seconds. The system features a Regeneration on Demand control that allows the driver to increase the regeneration via a control on the back of the steering wheel.

    2016 Chevrolet Volt interior, Click to enlarge

    Inside, Volt effectively maintains the 2+2 seating arrangement with the console on the floor between the two rear seats, though Chevy says you could put a third small person back there if they are willing to straddle the cupholder. The dashboard is completely redesigned. It has ditched the capacitive touch controls in favor of physical knobs and buttons. Chevy's Mylink system is displayed on an 8.0" diagonal touch screen. Chevy reduced the number of icons on the screen for easier use.
    The Volt will be built at GM's Hamtramck plant in Michigan with the batteries coming from Brownstown Michigan. The regeneration unit will initially be manufactured in Mexico before shifting to Flint Michigan. GM says that the Volt will be made of up to 70 percent US manufactured parts.
    The Volt comes out at a time when gas prices are plunging all over the U.S., not the best timing for a car that is sold on the premise of saving money on gas. However, the Volt may make a compelling argument as just a car that happens to save on fuel.
    The 2016 Volt hits the road this summer.
    Press Release on Page 2

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    Chevrolet Introduces All-New 2016 Volt

    New model features expressive, sleek design and delivers 50 miles of EV range

    DETROIT – Chevrolet today unveiled the all-new 2016 Volt electric car with extended range, showcasing a sleeker, sportier design that offers 50 miles of EV range, greater efficiency and stronger acceleration.
    The Volt’s new, efficient propulsion system will offer a General Motors’-estimated total driving range of more than 400 miles and with regular charging, owners are expected to travel more than 1,000 miles on average between gas fill-ups.
    “The 2016 Chevrolet Volt provides our owners with a no-compromise electric driving experience,” said Alan Batey, president of GM North America. “We believe our engineering prowess combined with data from thousands of customers allows us to deliver the most capable plug-in vehicle in the industry.”
    The 2016 Chevrolet Volt’s technology and range advancements are complemented by a design that blends sculpted, muscular proportions with aerodynamic efficiency, and an all-new interior with seating for five and improved functionality.
    Everything from charging the battery and checking the charge status, to the intuitiveness of instrument panel controls were designed for easier use.
    “According to independent surveyors, Volt owners are the most satisfied in the industry and they were our compass for developing the next-generation model,” said Batey.
    2016 Volt highlights:
    New two-motor drive unit is up to 12 percent more efficient and 100 pounds lighter (45 kg) than the first-generation drive unit
    Two-motor design enables 19 percent stronger zero-to-30 mph acceleration
    Battery capacity has increased to 18.4 kWh using 192 cells (96 fewer than current generation) with weight reduced by more than 20 pounds
    Regen on Demand™ feature enables driver control of energy regeneration via a convenient paddle on the back of the steering wheel
    New 1.5L range extender, designed to use regular unleaded fuel, offers a combined GM-estimated fuel efficiency of 41 mpg (EPA estimate pending)
    Stronger body structure and quieter ride
    New braking system with improved capability and blended Regen feel
    New, five-passenger seating with available rear heated seats
    Location-based charging capability
    120V portable cord sethas a simpler, compact design with more convenient storage location
    Available illuminated charge port

    The 2016 Volt goes on sale in the second half of 2015.
    Sleeker, sportier design
    The 2016 Volt has an all-new, muscular design that incorporates Chevrolet performance vehicle DNA inspired cues refined in the wind tunnel.
    New features, including active grille shutters, help balance design with efficiency.
    Volt’s flowing, dynamic shape is inspired by the toned physiques of athletes and even the natural shapes of wind-swept sands, with carved body sides and fenders that blend into the hood. The front-end appearance retains the iconic Volt identity, with bright upper and lower grille pads.
    Greater attention to detail in the design cues, materials and colors also lends a more premium, contemporary aura to its appearance. It also retains the distinctive Volt signature on the upper front doors, carrying over one of the first-generation model’s identifiers.
    Inside, the new Volt includes seating for five. Fresh colors exude an inviting upscale aura – complemented by blue ambient lighting – while the controls are more intuitively placed and simpler to operate.
    The Volt retains its signature dual digital color displays with an eight-inch-diagonal reconfigurable screen in the instrument cluster to relay driver information. An additional eight-inch-diagonal touch screen in the center of the instrument panel controls the Chevrolet MyLink system.
    Fewer icons on the center dash make it easier to operate. Separate climate control knobs and buttons below the center display offer clear, convenient operation.
    New Voltec propulsion system
    An all-new, second-generation Voltec extended range electric vehicle (EREV) propulsion system is the power behind the 2016 Volt’s increased all-electric driving range, greater efficiency and stronger acceleration. It was engineered based on the driving behaviors of first-gen Volt owners.
    “Volt owners complete more than 80 percent of their trips without using a drop of gasoline and they tell us they love the electric driving experience. Putting that experience at the center of the new Voltec system’s development helped us improve range, while also making the new Volt more fun to drive,” said Andrew Farah, vehicle chief engineer. “We established a precedent when the original Voltec propulsion system debuted and this newest iteration sets the EV technology bar even higher.”
    The Voltec system includes the battery, drive unit, range-extending engine and power electronics.
    GM’s industry-leading battery technology has been reengineered for the next-generation Volt. The 2016 Volt will use an 18.4 kWh battery system featuring revised cell chemistry developed in conjunction with LG Chem. While overall system storage capacity has increased, the number of cells have decreased from 288 to 192 as the result of a revised chemistry. The cells are positioned lower in the pack for an improved (lower) center of gravity and the overall mass of the pack is 21 pounds (9.8 kg) lighter.
    Like the battery system, the next-generation Volt’s two-motor drive unit delivers increased efficiency and performance along with reduced noise and vibration. The drive unit operates up to 12 percent more efficiently and weighs 100 pounds (45 kg) less than the current system.
    Both motors operate together in more driving scenarios, in both EV and extended-range operation. The ability to use both motors helps deliver a 19 percent improvement in electric acceleration from zero to 30 mph (2.6 seconds) and a 7 percent improvement from zero to 60 mph (8.4 seconds). GM engineers designed the Voltec electric motors to use significantly less rare earth materials. One motor uses no rare earth-type magnets.
    More convenient location-based charging
    Using real-world experiences of today’s Volt owners, Chevrolet made the charging system in the next-generation Volt more convenient for customers to recharge the battery – and to check the charge status.
    The new and enhanced features include:
    GPS location-based charging
    “Owners will now be able to set their charging preferences exclusively for “home” charging and the vehicle will automatically adjust to that setting when it is at “home” based on GPS data,” said Farah, the chief engineer. “The new Volt will give owners greater flexibility for charging on their terms and make public charging easier.”
    This will allow owners to pre-set their 120V charging level (eight amps or 12 amps) and whether they wish to charge immediately, set a departure time for each day of the week, or set a departure time and a utility rate schedule to charge only at off-peak rates. These setting will only have to be programmed once and the Volt will default to them when the vehicle return to its home location.
    New, more intuitive charge status indicators
    The next-generation Volt makes it easier for owners to confirm their Volt is charging and gauge charge status. The new status system features a specially designed tone that indicates when charging has begun, with additional tones for delayed charging. It will even indicate if the charge port door was left open after unplugging but before entering the vehicle.
    With a glance through the windshield, an updated charge status indicator light on the on the top of the instrument panel will show the approximate charge level through a series of flashes. An available illuminated charge port makes it easier to plug in after dark.
    Portable cord set enhancements
    A new 120V portable cord sethas a simpler, compact design with more convenient storage location. The storage bin for the cord is now located on the left side of the Volt’s rear cargo area, above the load floor, for improved accessibility.
    Safety features
    The new Chevrolet Volt offers new standard and available safety features that work with an all-new body structure to provide crash-avoidance and passenger protection capability. Highlights include:
    Standard rear-vision camera
    Ten standard air bags, including driver and front-passenger knee air bags
    Available active safety features offering lane keep assist with lane departure warning, side blind zone alert with lane change alert, rear cross traffic alert, forward collision alert with following distance indicator, front automatic braking, and advanced park assist with front and rear park assist (semi-automatic parallel parking)
    Expanded use of high-strength steel throughout the body structure improves strength and reduces weight
    More effective structural load paths in the frame, along with reinforced rocker panel structures and side structure reinforcements

    The new, active safety technologies and structural enhancements build on the Volt’s legacy of top safety performance, which include a 5-Star overall New Car Assessment Program rating from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for the current model.
    GM is investing $435 million in the production of the next-generation Chevrolet Volt at the Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly Plant and at the Brownstown, (Mich.) Battery Assembly Plant, where its lithium-ion battery pack is produced.
    The new drive unit will be manufactured at GM’s Powertrain plant in Warren, Mich., and the 1.5L engine will be manufactured at GM’s Toluca, Mexico engine plant for the first year of production, then shift to the Flint, Mich. engine plant.
    Since its introduction in late 2010, the Volt has established southeast Michigan as the hub of vehicle electrification development and manufacturing. The next-generation Volt will feature approximately 70 percent U.S. and Canadian components within its first year of production, a nearly 20-percent increase from the first generation.

    Drew Dowdell

    Cadillac releases pictures of the 640 horsepower 2016 Cadillac CTS-V ahead of the Detroit auto show.

    Cadillac released the details of the upcoming 2016 Cadillac CTS-V to be shown at the Detroit Auto Show on January 13th, 2015. Capable of 200 mph, the supercharged 6.2 liter V-8 produces 640 hp at 6400 rpm and 630 lb-ft of torque at 3600 rpm, an increase of 84 hp and 79 lb-ft over the current model. The 0-60 time drops by two-tenths of second to 3.7 seconds. The new 6.2 liter employs a 1.7 liter super charger and adds direct injection and cylinder deactivation, premium fuel is required. Cadillac brags that these power numbers are greater than both the Mercedes-Benz 5.5L bi-turbo V8 and the 4.4L twin-turbo V8 from BMW.
    Getting all of that power to the ground is an 8-speed automatic funneling power through the electronically controlled limited-slip rear differential. The suspension is a third generation magnetic ride control that has been upgraded to respond 40% faster to changing road surface conditions. At 60 mph, the suspension can react to every inch of road surface traveled. The half-shafts are of asymmetrical stiffness to help reduce wheel hop under hard acceleration.
    The new CTS-V's 19 inch wheels are 45 percent stiffer than the current model, yet lighter in weight to reduce unsprung mass. Curb weight clocks in at 4,145 lbs, a 74lb reduction in weight in spite of being just over 6 inches longer than the outgoing model. Brembo brakes pull the CTS-V down to a stop with 15.3 inch diameter rotors up front and 14.3 inch rotors in the rear
    The technology continues inside with an upgraded CUE system that includes natural voice recognition, Siri Eyes-Free and text-to-voice, wireless phone charging and a performance data recorder integrated into CUE's screen interface. Available will be a parking assist that will find and steer into parallel or perpendicular parking spots, but if the driver prefers to go it alone, a front camera will help the driver park without damaging the front air dam.
    Customers who wish to take the CTS-V to further performance heights can opt for a carbon fiber package. While even the standard CTS-V comes with a carbon-fiber hood, the carbon fiber package includes a more aggressive front spliter, hood vent, rear diffuser, and spoiler.
    The Cadillac CTS-V will be shown at the Detroit Auto Show on January 13th at 9:50am. We will be on hand to get you front row shots of this and all of the reveals. You can follow news from the 2015 North American International Auto Show at our Detroit Auto Show new feed.
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    Source: GM Media
    Press Release on page 2

    2016 Cadillac CTS-V Hits 200 mph with 640 hp
    Track-capable from the factory, with sophisticated road manners

    DETROIT – Cadillac today introduced the 2016 CTS-V, the most powerful product in the brand’s 112-year history and the newest entry in the elite class of the world’s highest-performing luxury cars.
    Launching in late summer with 640 horsepower (477 kW), 630 lb-ft of torque (855 Nm) and a top speed of 200 mph, the new CTS-V reaches higher than its predecessors, leading Cadillac’s product-driven expansion and elevation. It is the third generation of the acclaimed luxury sports sedan that launched the elite V-Series a decade ago – and redefined Cadillac for a new generation of enthusiasts.
    “V-Series represents the very best of the Cadillac brand – the pinnacle of our design and technical capabilities,” said Johan de Nysschen, Cadillac president. “The new CTS-V is the most compelling example of Cadillac’s product substance and brand trajectory. The new CTS-V soars into the stratosphere of the most exhilarating luxury cars.”
    Comprehensive updates make the new CTS-V essentially two cars in one: a luxury sedan with sophisticated road manners and a track-capable sports car straight from the factory. It also introduces a new supercharged 6.2L V-8 engine backed by Cadillac’s paddle-shift eight-speed automatic transmission, featuring launch control and Performance Algorithm Shifting.
    With more horsepower and torque than the Mercedes-Benz 5.5L biturbo V-8 and the BMW M-series 4.4L TwinPower (twin-turbo) V-8, the new CTS-V is capable of 0-60 performance in 3.7 seconds.
    Track-honed design, chassis and suspension elements complement the supercharged powertrain and elevate CTS-V’s capability, performance and driver control to new thresholds, while enabling track driving without modifications or special procedures. Key performance technologies include:
    Standard carbon fiber hood and available carbon fiber vent, front splitter, rear spoiler and rear diffuser for greater aerodynamic performance
    Brembo high-performance brake system developed to provide durability, consistency and the capability for track-day performance straight from the factory
    Third-generation Magnetic Ride Control delivering 40-percent faster damping response
    Integrated chassis controls that provide balanced performance for touring and the track, including competition-spec Performance Traction Management
    Structural stiffness increased by 25 percent for improved ride and superior handling
    Driver-selectable modes electronically calibrate performance variables for touring, sport and track driving conditions
    Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires with tri-compound technology offering excellent grip with extended wear
    An interior with performance-oriented, sueded microfiber accents and matte-finish carbon fiber trim and available RECARO high-performance seats for spirited driving
    Advanced safety and parking technologies, including a front curb-view camera system that provides a visual cue of curbs to protect the front splitter; automatic parking assist to find and steer into parallel or perpendicular parking spots; side blind zone alert, forward collision alert, lane keep assist and rear cross traffic alert.

    Additionally, the Performance Data Recorder in the CTS-V allows drivers to record high-definition video, with data overlays, of their driving experiences on and off the track, enabling sharing on social media.
    More powerful supercharged V-8 engine
    The power behind the new CTS-V’s capability is an all-new, more powerful 6.2L supercharged V-8 engine that makes more power more efficiently than the previous Cadillac supercharged engine. It employs a more-efficient, more-compact 1.7L supercharger and matches it with direct injection and Active Fuel Management (cylinder deactivation).
    The supercharger’s rotors are smaller in diameter than the previous supercharged engine, allowing higher maximum rpm that enables power-enhancing boost to be generated earlier in the rpm band. That boost is achieved more efficiently via a more direct discharge port that creates less turbulence, reducing heat and speeding airflow into the engine.
    The Cadillac supercharged engine also has several unique features designed to support its high output and the greater cylinder pressures created by forced induction, including Rotocast A356T6 aluminum cylinder heads that are stronger and handle heat better than conventional aluminum heads, and lightweight titanium intake valves.
    The CTS-V’s complementing eight-speed automatic is tuned for world-class shift-response times. Smaller steps between gears keep the engine within the sweet spot of the rpm band, making the most of the output of the supercharged engine for exhilarating performance and greater efficiency.
    The new 8L90 transmission offers full manual control via steering wheel paddles, and Performance Algorithm Shifting to deliver shift performance that rivals the dual-clutch/semi-automatic transmissions found in many luxury performance sedans – but with the smoothness and refinement that come with a conventional automatic fitted with a torque converter.
    Stronger structure enhances body motion control
    The CTS’s structure is highly mass optimized and designed to meet higher performance requirements, with enhancements to the V-Series developed to respond to cornering and torque loads that significantly exceed the levels experienced by the non-V models.
    Unique and revised elements include:
    Strut tower-to-tower brace
    Strut tower-to-plenum brace
    V-braces for the engine compartment
    Strengthened rocker bulkhead
    Stronger rear cradle-to-rocker braces
    A unique aluminum shear panel at the front of the chassis
    Upper tie bar-to-bumper braces.

    The enhancements bolster structural stiffness by 25 percent over non-V models, for more precise handling and steering – and a more confident feel from a vehicle that conveys strength through exceptional solidity.
    “With the stronger body structure – and more than a decade of V-Series production models and the CTS-V racing program experience – engineers tuned the CTS-V to deliver greater body motion control for a more agile feel, while maintaining excellent ride quality,” said David Leone, Cadillac executive chief engineer. “The result is class-leading capability on the highway or track, balanced with luxury and refinement.”
    Track-honed chassis and suspension
    The CTS-V shares the same 114.6-inch (2,910 mm) wheelbase as the CTS non-V-Series models, but has wider front and rear footprints that enhance grip, reduce body motion and contribute to more direct-feeling steering.
    Nineteen-inch wheels wrapped with specially developed Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires give the CTS-V its footprint and enable nearly 1g in lateral acceleration. The lightweight, forged aluminum wheels – measuring 9.5 inches wide in the front and 10 inches wide in the rear – are constructed of a low-mass forging that helps reduce un-sprung weight for greater agility and a more direct feel to steering inputs.
    The wheels are 45-percent stiffer than previous CTS-V wheels, while the Michelin tires feature a tri-compound tread that delivers excellent grip in performance driving situations, while offering excellent ride quality characteristics and extended tread wear.
    Additional contributors to the CTS-V’s responsive, connected and track-capable driving experience include:
    A revised multi-link double-pivot MacPherson-strut front suspension delivers a quicker response and increased lateral control, incorporating “hydro” bushings, where traditional elastomeric bushings are replaced with zero-compliance cross-axis ball joints, higher-rate springs and a stiffer stabilizer bar – for 20-percent greater roll stiffness
    The ZF Steering Systems Servotronic II variable-ratio electric power steering gear, with 14-percent greater system stiffness for an improved feeling of precision and greater driver feedback
    Cadillac’s five-link rear suspension features reduced roll center migration, stronger lateral control and effective anti-squat geometry, complementing the front suspension with greater body motion control. Contributing components include stiffer bushings, new cradle mounts, higher-rate springs and a stiffer stabilizer bar
    A standard electronic limited-slip differential supports optimal traction and enables maximum corner exit acceleration
    Larger prop shafts and greater half-shaft asymmetry (stiffer driver’s side shaft) mitigate power hop during acceleration
    A Brembo brake system provides durability, consistency and the capability for track-day performance. The system includes two-piece 15.3-inch-diameter (390 mm) front rotors with staggered six-piston calipers and 14.3-inch-diamter (365 mm) rear rotors with four-piston calipers.

    Also, the CTS-V features third-generation Magnetic Ride Control and Performance Traction Management. Four driver-selectable settings – Tour, Sport, Track and Snow – electronically calibrate performance variables to optimize the car for driving conditions. Performance Traction Management is offered in Track mode and features five settings of torque reduction and brake intervention for track driving.
    Magnetic Ride Control “reads” the road a thousand times per second, sending data to magneto-rheological fluid-filled dampers that can independently control the damping characteristics of all four dampers. Third-generation improvements enable 40-percent faster damping response. At 60 mph, the third-generation magnetic ride control system calculates the optimal damping force for every inch of the road.
    Functional form
    Almost every exterior panel on the CTS-V is unique, from the fascias and fenders, to the hood, rear spoiler and rocker moldings – and each was designed to support the car’s capability, contributing to lift reduction, enhanced cooling or both.
    The unique elements include:
    A lightweight carbon fiber hood featuring an air-extracting vent that pulls hot air out of the engine compartment and helps reduce lift at speed by channeling air pulled through the radiator out and over the top of car rather than allowing trapped air to exit under the car
    Unique front and rear fascias provide optimal aero performance, with larger grille openings in the front fascia to feed more air to the supercharged engine. Even the mesh pattern of the signature grille openings is enlarged to allow more air into the radiator and multiple heat exchangers
    A front splitter enhances handling by forcing air to push down on the front of the car rather than flow under it, where it can cause lift
    Wider fenders to accommodate the wide, 19-inch wheels and Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires
    The rocker moldings and rear spoiler are aero-optimized
    The forged aluminum wheels and brake calipers are offered in three finishes, allowing owners to personalize the appearance of the CTS-V.

    An available Carbon Fiber package takes aero performance and mass optimization to higher levels. The Carbon Fiber package includes a more aggressive front splitter, hood vent, rear diffuser and spoiler.
    “V-Series is the emotive core of Cadillac and the apex of the brand’s Art and Science design philosophy,” said Andrew Smith, executive director, Cadillac Global Design. “The CTS-V reflects that with a bold sense of arrival, serious performance, seamless integration of technology and precision in its craftsmanship. The exposed carbon fiber components, for example, are book-matched on the centerline for a more precise, tailored appearance.”
    Performance-focused cabin
    The CTS-V’s dual-purpose capability carries over to the interior, where the design and relationship of key components are focused expressly on performance-driving ergonomics.
    “With the performance the new CTS-V is capable of delivering, the interior needs to be as functional as the other vehicle systems,” said Smith. “All of the contact points – the steering wheel, seats, shifter and pedals – are designed to make performance driving experiences direct and intuitive.”
    The CTS-V features standard 20-way performance-oriented heated and ventilated front seats trimmed in semi-aniline leather, with sueded microfiber inserts and seatbacks. Available RECARO performance front seats deliver aggressive, adjustable bolsters that help hold the driver and front passenger in place during high-load cornering. They also have a luxury-performance feel, trimmed in Mulan leather with sueded microfiber inserts and seatbacks.
    Additional features include Cadillac’s cut-and-sew elements, with decorative stitching and authentic materials such as available sueded steering wheel and shift knob. Three color combinations are offered: Jet Black, Jet Black with Light Platinum accents and Saffron with Jet Black accents.
    The CTS-V features a unique version of the 12.3-inch instrument panel cluster display, with V-Series graphics and distinctive gauge readouts and complementing full-color, reconfigurable head-up display. It is also equipped with the latest connectivity technologies from Cadillac:
    CUE with Bluetooth connectivity with natural voice recognition
    Navigation with Bose Surround Sound audio
    Siri Eyes Free and text-to-voice that converts incoming text messages to speech and reads them over the audio system speakers
    Wireless inductive phone charging
    OnStar 4G LTE connectivity with built-in Wi-Fi hotspot.

    The Performance Data Recorder is controlled via CUE’s color touch screen, and recordings can be reviewed on the screen when the vehicle is parked.
    Cadillac has been a leading luxury auto brand since 1902. Today Cadillac is growing globally, driven by an expanding product portfolio featuring dramatic design and technology. More information on Cadillac appears at www.cadillac.com. Cadillac's media website with information, images and video can be found at media.cadillac.com

    # # #

    Brian Corbett
    Cadillac Communications
    Cadillac CTS-V sedan
    Body style / driveline:
    4-door sport luxury sedan (RWD)
    unitized welded steel body with direct-mounted front cradle and rubber-isolated, multi-link independent rear suspension
    GM vehicle class:
    midsize luxury sedan
    6.2L supercharged V-8
    Displacement (cu in / cc):
    376 / 6162
    Bore & stroke (in / mm):
    4.06 x 3.62 / 103.25 x 92
    Block material:
    cast aluminum
    Cylinder head material:
    cast aluminum
    overhead valve, two valves per cylinder
    Fuel delivery:
    direct injection
    Lubrication system:
    wet sump
    Compression ratio:
    Horsepower (hp / kW @ rpm):
    640 / 477 @ 6400 (SAE certified)
    Torque (lb-ft / Nm @ rpm):
    630 / 855 @ 3600 (SAE certified)
    Max. engine speed (rpm):
    Recommended fuel:
    premium required
    GM-estimated fuel economy
    TBD Transmission
    Hydra-Matic 8L90
    paddle-shift eight-speed, electronically controlled, automatic overdrive with torque converter clutch
    Gear ratios (:1):
    Final drive ratio:
    Chassis / Suspension
    rear-wheel drive
    electronic limited-slip
    Front suspension:
    MacPherson-type with dual lower ball joints and direct-acting stabilizer bar; Magnetic Ride Control with monotube inverted struts
    Rear suspension:
    independent five-link with Magnetic Ride Control
    Steering type:
    ZF rack-mounted electric, power-assisted and variable assist
    Steering ratio:
    15.5 (on center) to 11.2 (full lock)
    Steering turns, lock to lock:
    Turn circle (ft / m):
    40.3 / 12.3
    Chassis control:
    four-channel StabiliTrak w/ brake assist and traction control; Performance Traction Management
    Wheels and Tires
    Wheel size and type:
    19 x 9.5-inch front / 19 x 10-inch rear aluminum
    Tire size:
    front: 265/35ZR19 Michelin Pilot Super Sport
    rear: 295/30ZR19 Michelin Pilot Super Sport
    four-wheel disc; four-channel ABS/TCS w/ DRP; Brembo brakes with staggered six-piston calipers (front) and four-piston calipers (rear)
    Rotor type and thickness
    (in / mm):
    front: 15.35 x 1.41 (390 x 36) vented, with two-piece construction; Ferritic Nitro Carburized process for corrosion resistance
    rear: 14.37 x 1.10 (365 x 28) vented; Ferritic Nitro Carburized process for corrosion resistance
    Wheelbase (in / mm):
    114.6 / 2910
    Length (in / mm):
    197.6 / 5021
    Height (in / mm):
    57.2 / 1454
    Width (in / mm):
    72.2 / 1833
    Track (in / mm):
    front: 62.1 / 1577
    rear: 61.2 / 1554
    Curb weight (lb / kg):
    4145 / 1880
    Weight distribution
    (% front / rear):
    52.7 / 47.3
    Legroom (in / mm):
    front: 45.7 / 1160
    rear: 35.4 / 899
    Headroom (in / mm):
    front: 40.4 / 1026
    rear: 37.5 / 952
    Shoulder room (in / mm):
    front: 56.9 / 1446
    rear: 54.8 / 1392
    Hip room (in / mm):
    front: 53.8 / 1366
    rear: 53.3 / 1353
    Seating capacity
    (front / rear):
    2 / 3
    EPA passenger volume
    (cu ft / L):
    97 / 2746
    EPA trunk volume
    (cu ft / L):
    13.7 / 388
    Fuel tank (gal / L):
    19 / 72
    Engine oil (qt / L):
    10 / 9.5
    Cooling system (qt / L):
    11.9 / 11.3
    Note: Information shown is current at time of publication.Please visit http://media.gm.com for updates.

    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

    Buick teases us with a picture of a convertible ahead of the 2015 Detroit Auto Show

    Buick today posted a picture of their display for the North American International Auto Show in Detroit that begins next week. If you look closely at the picture, you can clearly see a convertible suspended from a large ribbon like structure over top of the rest of the cars on the floor and it looks a lot like the Opel Cascada.
    Speculation has run rampant about the possibility of Buick introducing the Cascada to the US for a while now. In fact, we even sent Buick our take on the Cascada during our Buick Week feature back in 2012.
    The Opel Cascada was unveiled in October 2012. It is a 2 by 2 convertible that can raise or retract its top in 17 seconds and while moving at speeds up to about 30 mph. As an Opel, the Cascada is available in a 1.4T gasoline, a 1.6T gasoline, and a 2.0T diesel. It is unlikely that the diesel will be making an appearance in the US, but both other engines should be considered a possibility.
    Buick doesn't have a press conference scheduled during the actual show days, but there is a pre-show event being held on Sunday, January 11th that the CheersandGears.com crew has been invited to, so keep it tuned here for more updates and releases as we get them.
    You can sign up to follow all the stories from Detroit here, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+

    Source: Buick's Facebook Page and CheersandGears.com

    Drew Dowdell

    Buick brings out a sexy coupe concept that may make it to production.

    At a preview event ahead of the 2016 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Buick brought out a svelte concept coupe called the Buick Avista.
    The concept is powered by a 400 horsepower 3.0 liter, twin-turbo V6 that sends power to the rear wheels. The engine features stop-start technology and GM's cylinder deactivation to improve fuel economy. This engine may sound familiar to you as it is one of the engines that will be available on the 2016 Cadillac CT6. No transmission is mentioned.
    In styling, Buick went with classic flowing lines and left the B-pillar, the post at the rear of the front door, at home. The overall effect is sleek and sexy.
    While Buick would not disclose the platform the Avista is built on, the fact that the wheelbase is identical to Camaro (110.70") while front and rear tracks are nearly the same tells us that this is almost certainly an Alpha platform car.
    No word on official production possibilities, however both Holden and Opel are expected to get a similar vehicle in the mid-term future, so the chances of a production version of this car coming to pass are good.


    Source and Official Photos: General Motors
    Live Reveal Photos: William Maley
    You can follow all of our reports from the 2016 Detroit Auto Show here.
    Buick Press Release on Page 2

    For Release: Sunday, Jan. 10, 2016, 7 p.m. EST

    Buick Introduces Avista Concept

    Design elegance, performance heritage conveyed in turbocharged 2+2 coupe


    DETROIT – Ahead of its public debut at the North American International Auto Show, Buick today revealed the Avista concept – a 2+2 coupe that pushes the brand’s contemporary design ethos and rekindles its historic performance roots.
    A sleek, sweeping proportion is the foundation for this vision of a contemporary grand tourer, with a 400-horsepower twin-turbocharged V-6 driving the rear wheels and a driver-focused cockpit offering a comfortable, connected center of control.
    “The Avista embodies the dynamic soul of Buick,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Global Buick Sales, Service and Marketing. “It is a modern expression of the brand’s heritage of sophisticated performance, communicated with beautiful elegance.”
    The Avista’s uninterrupted body lines stretch front to rear, suggesting motion – resembling Buick’s design language introduced on the Avenir concept and carried into production on the 2017 LaCrosse. The absence of conventional B-pillars between the doors and rear side windows enhances the flowing profile.
    “There is elegant simplicity in the Avista’s surfaces, which speak to the purity of the car’s performance, and a timeless beauty that’s a hallmark of Buick design,” said Bryan Nesbitt, executive director Global Buick Design. “It was designed to capture the spirit of the perfect drive.”
    Marking the front and rear, Buick evolves its signature wing-shaped lighting with “soft curtain” elements that create illuminated “halos” around lamps’ edges, suggesting a three-dimensional shape and sculpture. Their design forecasts the evolution of Buick’s production lighting features, while the Avista’s grille features the brand’s new winged tri-shield insignia set against a three-dimensional mesh background.
    Additional exterior features include:
    A 110.7-inch (2,811 mm) wheelbase and 63-inch (1,601 mm) front/62.9-inch (1,598 mm) rear tracks for sporty proportions and an aggressive stance Twenty-inch aluminum wheels with color-toned accents match the car’s Dark Sapphire Jewel exterior Front fender vents with chrome accents evolve Buick’s signature fender ports.


    Performance-oriented, modern cockpit
    Like the exterior, the Avista’s 2+2 interior is defined by flowing, uninterrupted lines conveying elegance through simplicity – with intense technical and surfaces details, in everything from 3D-printed door and seat trim to a future vision of Buick’s IntelliLink, with touchscreen controls on a widescreen instrument panel display.
    The center console also incorporates touchscreen controls and extends to the rear seating area. Open side storage compartments built into the front of the console are enabled by the new Electronic Precision Shift, similar to the 2017 LaCrosse.
    A Superior Blue foundation color echoes the exterior and is complemented with Mist Gray leather seating inserts, console trim and door trim. Exposed carbon fiber and aluminum accents throughout reinforce the precision of the performance-oriented driving experience. The fading pattern on the seats, console and doors were inspired by waves receding at a beach’s edge.
    “Waves, whether from the sea or in the sand, are all about motion and flow,” said Nesbitt. “That’s exactly what this concept is all about – flowing design and the purity of the driving experience.”
    Buick designers enhanced the passengers’ sensory experiences with next-generation QuietTuning and air-quality control, including advanced noise cancellation technology, ionic air purifiers and aromatherapy.
    The Avista also advances Buick’s legacy of turbocharged performance, which carries forward in the 2016 Regal GS and other models. Similar to the 2017 LaCrosse, the concept twin-turbocharged 3.0L V-6 features fuel-saving Active Fuel Management (cylinder deactivation) and Stop/Start technology to complement its power with efficiency. The engine is backed by an eight-speed automatic transmission and Magnetic Ride Control delivers more precise body motion control.
    FAST FACT: The Buick Y-Job, introduced in 1938, is widely recognized as the auto industry’s first concept vehicle.

    Drew Dowdell

    Avenir means "Coming Soon" in French, and we certainly hope so with this stunning surprise Buick concept at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit

    At the North American International Auto Show, Buick surprised us all with this stunning concept vehicle, the Buick Avenir. Avenir in French means "Coming Soon" or "In the near future", and we certainly hope so.
    The Avenir is a large sedan that visually can stand with the likes of the Bentley Mulsanne or the Mercedes Benz S-class, yet it does so with entirely Buick looks. Classic visual cues like the boat-tail trunk, the sweep spear, the large waterfall grille, and the 3-port fender vents merge with more modern cues like the check mark light pipes in the front and rear light clusters, and the hockey stick design element in the front doors to bring together old and new without looking over-wrought.

    Power for the Avenir comes from a next-generation 3.6 liter V6 that features cylinder deactivation mated to a 9-speed automatic transmission which sends power to all 4 wheels through a twin-clutch AWD system. The new 3.6 also features start-stop technology to power down the engine when at red lights. The driver can select multiple suspension dampening modes to his or her taste.
    One element that stood out to us was the return of colors to the Buick tri-shield emblem. I asked a Buick spokesperson if this means we might see a return of the tri-color tri-shield and they were noncommittal, saying only "There are many style and design features on this car that will be seen in future Buicks."... One can hope...
    Press Release on Page 2

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    Buick Explores Future with Avenir Concept

    New design proportion, device integration, rejuvenating interior push brand forward

    DETROIT – Buick introduced the Avenir concept today in advance of the North American International Auto Show – a flagship sedan exploring progressive design with new levels of passenger well-being and technology integration.
    The Avenir – French for future – is distinguished by its premium sports proportions and all-new interpretations of traditional Buick cues. It is the creation of a global team of Buick designers and sculptors who were inspired by historic Buick concepts, which pushed traditional boundaries, shaped future Buick models and influenced the entire auto industry.
    “Avenir embodies Buick design, which centers on effortless beauty and presence without pretense,” said Ed Welburn, vice president of General Motors Global Design. “It demonstrates the growing international reach of Buick and offers an exciting vision of where it can go.”
    The Avenir’s sculptural surfacing, expressive proportion and Buick’s signature sweep-spear bodyside visually cue an exceptional driving experience that awaits inside.
    “The interior is designed with the driver and passengers’ comfort and well-being in mind,” said Welburn. “Technology is seamlessly integrated and builds on the features that have become hallmarks for today’s production models – helping drive a new generation of customers to Buick.”
    Additional vehicle highlights:
    Personal seating for four
    Full light-emitting diode (LED) exterior lighting
    Twenty-one-inch wheels
    Next-generation direct-injected V-6 engine with fuel-saving Active Fuel Management (cylinder deactivation) and stop/start technology
    Nine-speed paddle-shift automatic transmission
    Driver-selectable suspension damping
    Twin-clutch all-wheel-drive system
    Next-generation Buick IntelliLink infotainment with large, 12-inch-diagonal color touch screen
    Driver-recognition features that automatically sync infotainment preferences
    Ionic cabin air filtration
    Mobile device wireless charging
    OnStar 4G LTE with Wi-Fi hotspot.

    A new design direction with a nod to the past
    A long hood, wheels-at-the-corners stance and a sloping, rear deck that pays homage to historical models, such as the Riviera, distinguish the Avenir’s proportion.
    “Simply put, Avenir is a beautiful piece of sculpture, delivered on a premium proportion that acknowledges the Buick design heritage in a very progressive way,” said Michael Simcoe, vice president of design, GM International Operations. “The vehicle remains unmistakably Buick with a modern take on the traditional Buick cues such as the sweep spear and boattail. The result is a piece of artistry that is precise in its character, beautifully proportioned. It really takes your breath away.”
    The most striking departure from contemporary Buick models is a new grille design that puts a new face on the brand. It features a large opening accented by a return to the three-color – red, silver and blue – Buick tri-shield insignia, accented by wing-shaped elements. The grille is flanked by bold headlamps featuring full LED lighting.
    “The new grille is a modern interpretation of a design introduced on the landmark 1954 Wildcat II concept, which shattered expectations of what a Buick was supposed to be,” said Simcoe. “On the Avenir, it represents a break from convention and progressiveness in technology.”
    Sculptural surfaces, taught lines, short overhangs and a broad-shouldered stance stretches 204.5 inches (5,195 mm) in length and 76 inches (1,931 mm) in width. Its reimagined sweep-spear element complements the long body lines and conveys a sense of motion, as does tapered rear-end styling.
    Avenir’s sophisticated color palette, including a Crystalline exterior color and strained use of bright work accent the Avenir’s body lines and sets up the interior for a combination that takes Buick’s contemporary style to a higher level.
    “It’s a sculpted design with a lot of snap in the character lines – with a classic long, low proportion,” said Simcoe. “Its length enables exceptional spaciousness inside, but just as importantly, a presence that speaks to luxury and the importance of style. In short, it’s the befitting proportion for a Buick flagship.”
    A soothing environment with unprecedented integration
    The Avenir’s four-place interior rewards the senses, makes managing technologies easier and enhances the feelings of personal space and well-being.
    “A flowing, sculptural quality in the interior forms, deco trim, premium leather and ambient lighting, create an environment that is inviting and comfortable,” said Liz Wetzel, Buick interior design director.
    Interior surfaces - inspired by nature and sea waves receding on a beach - flow seamlessly through the cabin. It is a motif featured on the seats and carried through in other trim components – even the carpet. In fact, a patterned insert for the carpet carries the motif in silk and bamboo.
    “There’s an almost-three-dimensional or bas-relief effect to the design motif that adds depth and heightens the sense of place,” said Wetzel. “Layered and floating elements such as the center console enhance the perception of lightness, efficiency and dynamism.”
    A color palette of light and natural tones blended with oiled and buffed wood trim, and Galvano satin-chrome accents, enhance the Avenir’s ambience.
    “They’re rich, premium materials and warm colors innovatively executed to enhance the soothing effect of the interior environment,” said Wetzel.
    Functionality is manifested in the Avenir’s device-integration technologies, which are designed to lift the user’s mood and make the details associated with daily life a little easier. It starts the moment the vehicle is started, synchronizing information and devices within seconds. The Avenir instantly configures gauge cluster and infotainment screen displays based on prior customization while also recognizing the user’s music preferences, calendar schedule and recently visited locations from a cellphone’s GPS. It can even pick up a podcast the user was listening to at the moment it was interrupted.
    Buick’s user experience designers are also pushing the Avenir’s technologies for home integration, which would allow accessing home security cameras or the capability of turning on outside lights and closing a garage door that was inadvertently left open.
    “The Avenir’s integration features build on the technologies already available or coming soon in smartphones and streamline them in a system that makes accessing and interacting with them easier,” said Wetzel.
    Personal connectivity extends to rear-seat passengers, where USB ports and video screens allow occupants to plug in to their favorite media and slip into complete relaxation, arriving at their destination refreshed and rejuvenated.
    “The use of color, material, form and amenities can affect a person’s mood and feeling,” said Wetzel. “The Avenir is a showcase of thoughtful and modern design with the capacity to anticipate and facilitate the personal needs of its occupants. It’s absolutely its own getaway destination.”

    Drew Dowdell

    As we suspected earlier this week, Buick is bringing the Opel Cascada Convertible stateside to be sold as a Buick.

    As we suspected earlier this week, Buick is bringing the Opel Cascada Convertible stateside to be sold as a Buick. Much of what we know of the Opel Cascada carries over to the Buick, with the primary difference being with powertrain selection.
    While the Europeans get 3 engine choices, we only get one. That's not entirely a bad thing in this case as the 1.4T gasoline and 2.0T diesel would not likely be suitable for most American convertible buyers' tastes. The engine we get in the US is a new to us 1.6 liter turbo-charged, direct injected 4-cylinder that produces 200 horsepower and 206 lb-ft of torque. This engine also features an overboost feature that will temporarily boost torque up to 221 lb-ft. Power is routed to the front wheels via the familier GM 6-speed automatic. This is the first application of this powertrain in the US market. This engine is said to be quite fuel efficient for it's output and in the European cycle returns a rating 7.3 liters per 100 km.... which roughly translates to 32 mpg. The European test cycle is known to be rather optimistic so don't expect the Cascada to be rated quite that well once the EPA gets their hands on it.
    The suspension consists of GM's HiPer Strut up front with a Watts Z-link in the rear. The Watts Z-Link was chosen as a way to lower vehicle weight and improve the roominess of the trunk.
    On the safety side of things, the Cascada comes with active rollover protection bars that deploy from behind the rear seat if a possible rollover is detected, electric seat belt pre-tensioners,
    An interesting feature of the Cascada is its ability to lower its top while moving at up to 31 mph. The soft-top is insulated and drops below a hard tonneau cover that blends seamlessly into the rear deck.
    The Buick Cascada will be fully revealed at a press conference on January 11, 2015 at 6:30pm. We will be on hand to bring you updates and pictures from the press conference.
    You can sign up to follow all the stories from Detroit here, or follow us onFacebook, Twitter,andGoogle+

    Press Release on Page 2

    Top-Down Luxury Returns with 2016 Buick Cascada

    2+2 convertible with distinctive design, premium features, great refinement and 4G LTE connectivity
    Advanced chassis technologies – including HiPer Strut front suspension – and standard turbocharged performance
    Sophisticated, insulated soft-top system opens in 17 seconds at up to 31 mph

    DETROIT – Buick today introduced the 2016 Cascada – a dynamic, stylish convertible that uses innovative powertrain and chassis technologies to complement a sharp driving experience.
    The Cascada will be the first Buick convertible offered in North America in 25 years and the latest globally developed vehicle to join the brand’s growing portfolio. It goes on sale in early 2016.
    “The new, 2016 Buick Cascada is a beautiful, engaging convertible that represents the very best of the brand’s global development practices,” said Duncan Aldred, vice president of Buick. “It’s a car that will delight customers with its fun spirit and help drive the momentum that’s fueling Buick’s success.”
    The Cascada’s 2+2 configuration offers comfortable room for four adults. Its expressive driving experience is rooted in a rigid body structure, Buick’s sophisticated HiPer Strut front suspension and responsive Watts Z-link suspension in the rear – along with a 200-horsepower (149 kW) turbocharged engine.
    And when it comes to dropping the top on a whim, it lowers in only 17 seconds and at speeds up to 31 mph. When it’s up, superior thermal and acoustic insulation contribute to driving comfort.
    “Cascada’s driving enjoyment is rooted in technologies that make it more comfortable and refined,” said Aldred. “Its features work harmoniously to provide a safe, connected and confidence-inspiring driving experience.”
    Technology and safety highlights include:
    Buick IntelliLink with a seven-inch-diagonal color touch screen and featuring Text Message Alerts, Siri Eyes Free and navigation
    OnStar 4G LTE with built-in Wi-Fi hotspot
    Electronic rear-seat entry system automatically powers the front seats forward by simply pressing the seatback forward. It moves the seats back when the seatback is returned to the upright position
    Electric safety belt presenters that use telescopic arms to slide the upper front safety belt assemblies from behind the front seat into closer reach for easier buckling
    Active rollover safety system includes rollover protection bars that deploy behind the rear seats when the possibility of a rollover is detected
    Confidence-inspiring features include lane departure warning, rear park assist, rearview camera and Rainsense windshield wipers.

    Distinctive design and thoughtful features
    Designed from the outset as a convertible, the Buick Cascada has a flowing, sculpted profile, with fast-raked A-pillars that convey a wind-in-the-hair flair. When lowered, the top folds neatly and completely beneath a hard tonneau behind the rear seats, giving the car a pure open-air aesthetic.
    “The Cascada’s design blends the suggestion of speed with sophisticated and uncompromising details,” said Holt Ware, Buick exterior design director. “Most convertibles are designed from existing coupes or sedans, meaning stowage of the top was an afterthought, but not this Buick. It looks handsome and has a premium appearance when the top is lowered – and a perfect, seamless profile when it’s up.”
    The windswept exterior design is further accentuated with a sweeping body-side line and sleek headlamps that flow into the front fenders, with Buick’s signature wing-shape LED daytime running lights delivering a distinctive appearance.
    Chrome trim bridges between the wing-shaped taillights, which are also LED-lit.
    The rear deck lid opens rearward to accommodate the folding soft-top. The electro-hydraulic power roof system features multilayer construction – including acoustic and thermal barriers – which makes for a comfortable ride in various conditions.
    Inside, a thoughtfully trimmed and comprehensively equipped cabin reflects Buick’s renaissance. The instrument panel is wrapped with soft-touch material featuring authentic stitching, while features including heated front seats and steering wheel offer comfort in a variety of climate conditions.
    The Cascada also has plenty of storage space for the trappings of a weekend getaway, including 13.4 cubic feet (380 liters) of cargo room with the top up and 9.8 cubic feet (280 liters) with the top down. The rear seatbacks fold down electronically to expand cargo capability for longer items.
    Turbocharged performance, engaging driving experience
    The Cascada is driven by an efficient 1.6L turbocharged engine rated at 200 horsepower (149 kW). With more than 100 horsepower per liter, it’s one of the most power-dense engines in the segment. It delivers strong torque, estimated at 206 lb-ft (280 Nm), with an overboost feature that briefly pushes torque to an estimated 221 lb-ft (300 Nm).
    Direct injection and variable valve timing complement the turbo engine’s performance with efficiency. It is backed by a six-speed automatic transmission.
    Power from the turbocharged engine is translated into driving enjoyment via the innovative suspension system, which employs the sophisticated HiPer Strut front suspension pioneered on the LaCrosse and Regal.
    HiPer Strut is based on the MacPherson strut design and features dual-path top mountings that separate the transfer of spring and damper loads to the body structure. It enhances ride and handling by reducing torque steer; more linear and communicative steering through improved camber control; and improved impact isolation on bumps and rough surfaces.
    A responsive Watts Z-link design helps center the rear axle during cornering, which helps keep the Cascada’s handling responses symmetrical on both left-hand and right-hand turns. The linkage’s capability to center the axle during cornering delivers a more-balanced driving experience because the rear suspension better follows the lead of the front suspension.
    The Z-link design is also lighter and requires less space than a typical fully independent rear suspension. The lower weight enhances efficiency, while the compact design enables the Cascada’s generous cargo room.
    Steering inputs are executed by a fuel-saving, rack-mounted electric power steering system, while stopping power is handled by standard four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock. It rolls on standard 20-inch wheels.
    A rigid body structure features high-strength steel in strategic areas, reinforced side sills and press-hardened steel in the A-pillars. It is the foundation for the Cascada’s dynamic and refined driving experience, contributing to steering precision, ride quality and quietness – as well as safety. A long, 106.1-inch (2,695 mm) wheelbase enhances ride smoothness while enabling greater rear-seat legroom.

    Drew Dowdell

    As a preview to the unveiling of the 2016 Nissan Titan on January 12th, Nissan released teaser images and video of the upcoming redesign of its full size truck.

    As a preview to the unveiling of the 2016 Nissan Titan on January 12th, Nissan released teaser images and video of the upcoming redesign of its full size truck. Sales of the Nissan Titan are typically in last place behind the Detroit-3 and the Toyota Tundra. Nissan is hoping to change that with the 2016 Titan. While still camouflaged in these pictures, we get a better view of the revised truck. In the video, we can see the new truck being put through various performance tests and if you look closely, you can get a hint of the new interior as well.

    Powertrains for the 2016 Titan will range from the familiar 317 horsepower 5.6 liter V8 to a new 5.0 liter Cummins turbo-diesel making around 300 horsepower and between 500 - 550 lb-ft of torque. Fuel economy for the new turbo-diesel is rumored to reach 26 mpg combined, a figure that would beat the successful Ram 1500 V6 EcoDiesel's figure of 23 mpg combined while also producing a lot more power.
    The 2016 Nissan Titan press release is scheduled for January 12th, 2015 at 8:05 am. We will be on hand to bring you pictures and updates from the floor.

    You can sign up to follow all the stories from Detroit here, or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+
    Source: Nissan Media

    William Maley

    And Making A Return Performance, The Hyundai Genesis

    When Hyundai introduced the Genesis sedan back in 2009, many were skeptical that the automaker could sell a luxury car in the U.S. Well Hyundai has been able to prove them wrong as the Genesis was improved and sales climbed upward. As a reward, Hyundai has decided to continue on with the Genesis and introduced the next-generation at the Detroit Auto Show today.
    The 2015 Genesis heralds a new design language that Hyundai calls Fluidic Sculpture 2.0. This begins up front with a flatter end and a large hexagonal grille. The side profile features a number of character creases, a coupe-like sloping rear windshield, and sharp looking alloy wheels. In the cabin, the Genesis is very similar to the Equus with the dashboard layout. Other details to take note are ihgher grade seat upholstery, new panoramic sunroof, the second-generation of Hyundai's BlueLink infotainment system, and a quieter cabin.
    Under the hood are two different engines; a 3.8L V6 with 311 horsepower and 293 pound-feet of torque, and a 5.0L V8 with 420 horsepower and 383 pound-feet. Both engines are slightly down on power, but Hyundai explains the reason for the power reduction is to improve useable power. Both engines will come with an eight-speed automatic.
    Available on the V6 is Hyundai's new all-wheel-drive system called HTRAC. HTRAC uses an electronic torque split system to divide power between the front and rear wheels variably. There are three different settings to choose from. Normal keeps the split even between the front and rear wheels. Sport sends more power to the rear wheels. Eco improves fuel economy.
    The V8 will come with continuous damping control suspension system.
    Other changes for the Genesis include automatic braking system whcih will be able to fully stop the car between 5 and 50 mph, C02 sensor in the cabin that monitors oxygen levels to help drivers stay alert, and new heads-up display.
    The 2015 Hyundai Genesis arrives this spring.
    Source: Hyundai

    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
    New, Ultra-rigid Rear-drive Platform Adds More Precise Vehicle Dynamics, Superior Passenger Safety and Multi-mode AWD Availability
    Automatic Emergency Braking, Head’s-up Display, Blind-Spot Detection, Cabin CO2 Sensor and Lane-Keep Assist Added to Suite of Active Safety Features
    Second-generation Blue Link® Telematics and Infotainment Suite to Debut

    DETROIT, Jan. 13, 2014 – Today Hyundai introduced its all-new 2015 Genesis at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, marking the highly-anticipated launch of its second-generation premium sedan. The groundbreaking original Genesis model won the prestigious North American Car of the Year accolade at its introduction in 2009.
    The 2015 Genesis represents a bold step forward for Hyundai, continuing to build upon its successful strategy of marketing its premium models under the Hyundai brand umbrella, rather than a costly separate luxury brand sales channel. The new Genesis is incredibly well-equipped in every configuration, offering even more content than the first-generation Genesis. This additional content includes a generous suite of standard safety and convenience features, unsurpassed in its class. For the first time in a Hyundai sedan, a sophisticated AWD system will be offered, known as HTRAC®, significantly broadening Genesis appeal in Snowbelt regions throughout the U.S. The new Genesis will be built at Hyundai’s Ulsan, Korea plant, with U.S. sales beginning in the spring.
    “Hyundai is proud to bring our next-generation Genesis sedan to eager U.S. consumers in just a few short months,” said Mike O’Brien, vice president of corporate and product planning, Hyundai Motor America. “Market expectations for the new Genesis are understandably high, and we’re confident the Genesis’ combination of superb dynamics, bold design, class-leading safety and driver-focused technologies will exceed those expectations by a large margin.”
    Since its 2009 debut on the Sonata sedan, Hyundai’s Fluidic Sculpture design philosophy has been continually enhanced and refined, progressively influencing every model in the Hyundai line-up. The all-new Genesis will be the first Hyundai to embody Fluidic Sculpture 2.0, the second-generation of this convention-shattering design theme.
    Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 encapsulates a trio of main design elements: fluid aesthetics, the modern Hyundai look, and a premium ambience. Fluidic forms are still present but with a more refined and precise presentation. This latest design philosophy is adaptable to a wider range of vehicle types and sizes, from CUVs to premium-luxury flagships. The all-new Sonata sedan, to debut later this year, will also clearly manifest the Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design philosophy.
    The 2015 Hyundai Genesis expresses a truly modern design through distinctive exterior styling with a sleek, upscale appearance. Evoking a premium feel, the design cues display a new Hyundai family aesthetic: simple and harmonious design with refined fluidic elements. The design features the modern Hyundai look, with a striking hexagonal front grille as a key geometric element, a dynamic crease accent running along the flanks of the car, and a dynamic rear design. Design surfaces convey a kinetic elegance, relying more on voluminous body sections than surface details to create dramatic forms. Proportions demonstrate a long dash-to-axle length, longer wheelbase and shorter overhangs than its predecessor. These proportions clearly convey the performance rear-drive configuration beneath the sheetmetal.
    The single-frame 3D-hexagonal grille ensures the front end of the all-new Genesis is not only striking, depicted in semi-gloss chrome, but also encompasses available HID headlamps, LED indicators and fog lamps. In profile, the Genesis daylight opening is more expressive, with fluid lines and blended surfaces, a sleek C-pillar helping to emphasize the sporty styling. The rear of the all-new Genesis benefits from a sculptural aesthetic with jeweled, full-LED taillamps.
    The cabin layout of all-new Genesis has been designed to benefit all occupants with a spacious, comfortable ambience. The simplification of the switchgear and instrument panel ensures an intuitive layout and open feel. This user-centric design has sought to connect the various interior parts effectively, particularly the center stack with the console, upper-instrument panel and B-pillar with the headliner. Genesis displays ultra-precise fit and finish, with ergonomic seat design and a generous, natural feel. Particular design attention has been paid to the storage of practical items such as mobile electronics of all shapes and sizes, along with the flexibility of the cup holders.
    Total interior volume is an impressive 123.0 cubic feet, an advantage over key competitors. As part of this spacious interior design, the Genesis provides best-in-class front headroom and rear shoulder room.
    Hyundai interior design principles – safety, intuitiveness and simplicity – guided the Genesis design team in redesigning all primary controls to deliver maximum ease of use. The steering wheel design and grip has been improved and onboard switchgear was redesigned; a number of switches previously found on the center console of the original Genesis were relocated and reshaped on the Genesis. Further ergonomic improvements to ensure ease of reach and control have been meticulously evaluated and executed using a specially-designed laboratory tool created to measure occupant operational force for ergonomics.
    A new design pattern has been introduced to decrease relative interior reflections and brighten dashboard surfaces, while high-grade materials such as genuine aluminum and matte-finish wood are available. Cohesion between the center fascia and audio controls has been ensured through a streamlined design, making the two separate sections appear as one. To ensure a luxurious feel, Genesis was intensely scrutinized for its use of materials, with extensive analysis of the relationship of different materials, their texture and color coordination.
    Driver and passenger posture are optimized using enhanced seat pad density, improved seat support technologies, such as adjustable driver’s seat power bolsters and seat cushion extension. Genesis seats offer 12-way power front seats, including 4-way power lumbar, heated front seats with available ventilation, as well as available heated rear seats. Seat materials and stitching quality have been enhanced with the introduction of double, rather than single stitching. The redesigned driver’s seat incorporates new functionality, with an available new air-pressure pump and controller valve, providing seatback bolster adjustment through individual air-cells located in the seat. With a total operating time under 8-seconds, the Genesis benefits from both a faster activation process and greater range of adjustment than many competitive rivals.
    New interior-focused features for Genesis include available manual rear side sunshades for enhanced occupant comfort. Genesis passengers are also sure to appreciate the enhanced perspective of their surroundings via the new available panoramic sunroof.
    The 2015 Hyundai Genesis receives a redesigned platform to accommodate its new available HTRAC® AWD system, using no shared components with its previous generation. The platform employs even more advanced high-strength steel, now over 50 percent of total platform composition. The benefits of strategic use of high-strength steel are immediately evident in 16 percent stiffer torsional rigidity and 40 percent stiffer bending rigidity compared with the highly-acclaimed first-generation architecture. As a result, the new Genesis is stiffer in both torsional and bending rigidity than the BMW 5-series.
    Body and mounting point stiffness are also improved on the Genesis. Ensuring a smooth ride over rough roads was a top development focus, achieved by a more robust connecting structure, extensive laser welding, reinforced body and chassis mounting points, new hot stamping and dipping techniques for the B-pillar and roof sides, and an increased amount of high-strength steel in the chassis. Front shock towers are made of aluminum, and a diamond-shaped strut bar maximizes front structure rigidity for precise steering response. Front seat frames were also strengthened for greater rigidity.
    Fully leveraging this new, stiffer chassis is an all-new rear multi-link suspension, with newly optimized 5-link geometry and increased suspension travel for a broader envelope of both dynamic performance and ride comfort. Lateral suspension stiffness and overall ride comfort refinement were top priorities in its dynamic development. The fully-independent, 5-link front and rear suspension designs have increased stiffness compared with the original Genesis, with increased front and rear suspension travel, for greater wheel articulation and bump absorption over a variety of road surfaces. The reduction in camber angles when turning at speed results in improved steering feel, 23 percent less tire tilt, and increased lateral grip. New 18-inch and 19-inch alloy wheels are stronger and resist deflection forces for more precise suspension response to changing road surfaces.
    A Continuous Damping Control (CDC) suspension, available on the Genesis 5.0, helps increase control of body motions and body roll, allowing sportier roadholding to be complemented with a more comfortable ride character. Independent roll control characteristics are achieved using separate tuning controls: Normal mode helps provide superior ride comfort, while Sport mode helps increase damping forces for enhanced dynamic precision and control. Handling and roadholding also benefit from a well-balanced 52/48 ratio of front-to-rear weight distribution.
    In addition, special focus was given to the development of Rack-mounted Motor Driven Electric Power Steering (R-MDPS), with a Variable Gear Ratio (VGR), helping to provide high-speed stability and more direct feel at low and medium speeds. These driving qualities are attained while retaining the incremental fuel economy benefits of an electric system over the higher parasitic losses of hydraulic systems.
    The 2015 Hyundai Genesis is offered with a choice of rear-wheel-drive or new HTRAC® All-Wheel-Drive (AWD) configurations. The new HTRAC AWD system was developed as a multi-mode system, providing an electronic, variable-torque-split clutch with active torque control between the front and rear axles. The system is very lightweight at 165 lbs.
    The driver-selectable HTRAC Normal and Eco modes help provide confident control in all-weather conditions. The Sport setting gives a more agile feel by sending more available torque to the rear wheels, for a sporty rear-drive dynamic feel when desired. Further, to maximize efficiency, the system can direct more available torque to the rear wheels during steady-state highway cruising for reduced drivetrain frictional losses and noise. This system has a wider range of torque distribution variability than many competitive systems and has been tuned to variable conditions such as straight-line acceleration, medium- and high-speed cornering, and hill-starts. All modes are programmed in concert with Genesis’ Intelligent Drive Mode select.
    In addition to extensive on-the-road and laboratory testing, circuit-based testing of the Genesis took place in Germany, Korea and Hyundai’s California Proving Ground in the U.S. High g-force assessment of the new HTRAC AWD system was completed at the Korea International Circuit in Yeongam, the venue for one round of the Formula One World Championship. Durability and high-performance handling driving tests took place on the Nürburgring Nordschleife circuit in Germany to precisely calibrate Genesis ride, braking and handling characteristics. Furthermore, Hyundai engineers collaborated with top dynamics experts such as Lotus Engineering to further validate the performance capability of the Genesis.
    The heart of the Genesis 5.0 is the award-winning 5.0-liter Tau V8 engine producing 420 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 383 lb. ft. of torque at 5,000 rpm. The Tau V8 engine family has been named to Ward’s prestigious Ten Best Engines list three times. With high-pressure direct injection for impressive power, low emissions and superb efficiency, this latest version of the Tau V8 benefits from an optimized intake runner length, enhanced timing chain for reduced friction and NVH, low-torque exhaust manifold, increased compression ratio and upgraded multiple-injection mapping. These enhancements combine to produce a flatter torque curve at lower rpm for even better driveability.
    The Tau’s high 11.8:1 compression ratio increases thermal efficiency and output. The Tau also has a rigid bed plate for improved block rigidity and lower NVH (Noise, Vibration, and Harshness), as well as camshaft carriers and a roller timing chain to improve valvetrain stability.
    Even more, this V8 offers Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing (D-CVVT), a tuned variable induction system, and low-friction coatings on piston skirts. This Tau engine will also run on regular fuel with only a small reduction in peak power, and no negative driving effects, whenever desired.
    The Tau 5.0-liter V8 is mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. This Hyundai-developed transmission offers enhanced shift logic and speed, better acceleration, sport-mode mapping, shifting smoothness, and transmission efficiency. All eight-speed transmissions include SHIFTRONIC® manual shift capability with conveniently-located steering wheel paddle shifters to enhance shifting ease during spirited driving.
    The Genesis 3.8-liter direct-injected Lambda engine has also been further optimized to deliver a flatter overall torque curve at low rpm for enhanced driveability. Thoroughly improved for the new Genesis, this engine includes a three-stage variable intake system, triangular-pattern fuel injector for improved combustion, an air-gap exhaust manifold for better NVH, and an upgraded cylinder block with a variable-vane 2-stage oil pump for reduced parasitic losses. In keeping with its 5.0-liter V8 sibling, the Genesis 3.8-liter Lambda engine utilizes direct-injection and produces 311 horsepower at 6,000 rpm and 293 lb.-ft. of torque at 5,000 rpm. It also has a high compression ratio of 11.5:1 for greater thermal efficiency. The Lambda engine will run on regular fuel with only a small reduction in peak power, and no negative driving effects, whenever desired by the owner.
    The 3.8-liter engine also has Dual Continuously Variable Valve Timing (D-CVVT), variable induction, an all-aluminum block and heads, steel timing chain and iridium-tipped spark plugs. Besides horsepower and torque gains, direct-injection technology produces a significant reduction in emissions.
    All 3.8-liter engines are coupled to the same eight-speed automatic transmission design as the Genesis 5.0. This Hyundai-developed transmission offers enhanced shift logic and speed, better acceleration, sport-mode mapping, shifting smoothness, and transmission efficiency. All eight-speed transmissions include SHIFTRONIC® manual shift capability with ergonomically-placed paddle shifters for spirited driving with manual shifting.
    Genesis offers abundant standard safety features, including Electronic Stability Control (ESC), nine airbags, and anti-whiplash front head restraints. Genesis' nine airbags include advanced dual front airbags, driver’s knee airbag, front and outboard rear seat-mounted side-impact airbags, and roof-mounted side curtain airbags for both front and rear outboard seat occupants.
    Although government crash testing for the new Genesis is not yet complete, the entire structure was engineered to meet the new Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) Top Safety Pick + standard.
    Daytime running lights come standard on Genesis. Further, Genesis offers a Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS). Whenever the system is activated, the haptic steering wheel will provide a vibration warning and dial-integrated warning light to alert drivers of their lane departure, allowing them to reposition the car smoothly into the correct position.
    Even Genesis’ tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) has been enhanced with individual tire pressure readouts available to the driver.
    Genesis is brought to a halt by large four-wheel anti-lock disc brakes with Brake Assist and Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD). Genesis 3.8 models have large 13.6-inch front rotors, while the 5.0 has even larger 14.2-inch front rotors. Both braking systems use four-piston fixed monobloc calipers for precise braking responsiveness.
    The 2015 Hyundai Genesis employs a suite of active driver safety technologies dubbed Sensory Surround SafetyTM. These features cover the full spectrum of safety, from driver alertness and focus to total occupant safety, and even the safety of other drivers around you.
    Genesis offers a Hyundai first, Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB), utilizing sensor fusion technology to help avoid a potential collision or reduce its impact. With this system, Genesis will employ automatic braking whenever it detects another vehicle at an unsafe closing rate of speed. This system uses the Smart Cruise Control system and the forward camera from the Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS) to provide this extra margin of safety.
    Genesis’ Smart Cruise Control (SCC) incorporates stop-start functionality that functions seamlessly with the standard electronic stability control system. The new system for Genesis allows full function down to zero mph to operate seamlessly in stop-and-go traffic conditions, using the front-grille-mounted radar sensor. SCC enables the Genesis to help maintain safer, consistent spacing with the vehicle ahead in varied traffic conditions. The system can also help deploy an available Automatic Emergency Braking system should a stationary vehicle be detected ahead.
    Genesis is generously equipped with new, advanced technologies, many of them Hyundai firsts. A new driver-selectable Intelligent Drive Mode allows drivers to select from four drive modes depending on conditions and driving preferences. Each drive mode alters transmission mapping, throttle responsiveness, stability control, and suspension damping settings, with specific modes adapted to function seamlessly with HTRAC AWD for those Genesis so equipped.
    In addition to the above modes, Genesis features an Emergency Steering Support Mode which automatically changes the setting of suspension and electronic stability control (ESC) in the direction suitable for emergency steering, to help avoid frontal crash situations.
    Genesis also debuts a new Blind-Spot Detection system (BSD), which helps monitor traffic around the car. The system uses radar sensors in the rear bumper to help warn the driver of an approaching vehicle in his or her blind spot via an indicator on the side mirrors. If the driver activates the lane change indicator and attempts to change the lane, ignoring warning indicators, BSD additionally issues an audible warning and haptic steering wheel vibrations. In addition, for Genesis’ equipped with the Head’s-Up Display, the BSD system indicators also project onto the windshield, nearer the driver’s view of the road, a segment first.
    Lane Change Assist (LCA) performs a similar function to help detect vehicles approaching towards its rear side at high speeds, especially during higher-speed driving, while Rear Cross-traffic Alert (RCTA) scans areas to each side of the car when drivers are backing out of parking spaces. No other sedan in Genesis’ class offers the combination of Blind-Spot Detection (BSD), Lane Change Assist (LCA), and Rear Cross-traffic Alert (RCTA) active safety systems.
    From the front, the available Lane Departure Warning System (LDWS) captures images of lanes and recognizes the lane marker. If LDWS detects lane departure, a warning signal is activated on the instrument panel while issuing a haptic steering wheel vibration warning. Working in concert with LDWS, Genesis’ Lane Keeping Assist System (LKAS) performs a similar function of LDWS, but LKAS additionally provides a driver-adjustable level of steering assist to help prevent inadvertent lane departure when a vehicle approaches the edge of a lane and also provides steering wheel haptic vibration feedback.
    For convenience and safety, a High-beam Assist (HBA) function is also available. When switched to automatic mode, it detects both oncoming vehicles and vehicles in the same lane ahead at night and changes to low-beam as appropriate, reducing blinding effects on other drivers. Whenever there are no vehicles detected, the system automatically re-activates the high beams, maximizing the driver’s range of vision. To maximize driving visibility, Genesis offers HID headlamps with dynamic auto-leveling that compensates for varying vehicle loads.
    To help ensure maximum driver alertness, Genesis also benefits from a world-first technology in its CO2sensor control system, located under the glove box. Hyundai engineers discovered that occupants start to get drowsy when CO2 levels reached more than 2,000 parts per million, so the new ventilation system helps ensure the cabin maintains a CO2 concentration well below that level at all times using freshly-ventilated ambient air. The system monitors the vehicle’s intake of fresh or re-circulated air using a dedicated CO2 sensor.
    The 2015 Hyundai Genesis also offers a parking assistance system with eight ultrasonic sensors located on the front and rear bumpers. The sensors, along with the rear backup camera, help detect how close objects are when parking. Distance is indicated on the in-dash screen and accompanied by an audible warning tone.
    In pursuit of refined quietness within the Genesis cabin, Hyundai engineers analyzed idle noise and vibration, acceleration, road and wind noise, and audible booming throughout the bodyshell. Sound-absorbing materials and a low-noise fuel pump have been fitted, cowl bulkhead insulation and sealing improved, and vibrations minimized through an improvement in overall bodyshell rigidity. Additional insulation of the rear differential helps reduce booming and vibration, resulting in lower audible noise inside the Genesis passenger cabin.
    Under acceleration, better sound quality has been achieved through mid-to high-frequency noise reduction, and dynamic engine sound improvements were achieved through intake and exhaust system tuning. Engine support brackets have been moved further apart for greater stiffness, while transmission and sub-frame mounts have been stiffened by up to 100 percent.
    To improve NVH performance at cruising speeds (35-75 mph), Hyundai engineers increased the stiffness of parts associated with the sub-frames and suspension, lowering levels of cavity and rumble noise. To ensure Genesis recorded lower interior noise in crosswind conditions, doors were thickened, sunroof articulation reshaped, and changes were made to the sealing process for increased durability and performance. In addition, cowl bulkhead insulation and sealing has been improved, with the total weight of the sound insulation package used on the Genesis at only 84 lbs., yielding a remarkable NVH reduction-to-weight ratio.
    Most Genesis competitors with hands-free trunk-opening technology use a leg-kick sensor under the rear bumper to enable the driver to open the trunk. Hyundai ergonomics engineers found this method to be difficult when an individual is carrying cumbersome packages, such as from shopping. So the Genesis Smart Trunk system was designed to open the trunk automatically if the smart key is detected in a pocket or purse within a few feet of the rear bumper for longer than three seconds, for maximum hands-free ease of opening when desired. This system allows the driver to keep both feet comfortably on the ground, simply waiting by the trunk a few seconds for it to open automatically. The Smart Trunk system also provides an audible warning and flashing light prior to opening.
    Taking inspiration from aircraft technology, an available new Head’s-Up Display (HUD) projects a virtual image onto the windshield, enabling the driver to keep his or her eyes on the road using a system of mirrors combined with a TFT LCD display. The system utilizes a wide screen with adjustable brightness to ensure both excellent daytime and nighttime visibility. Driving information such as speed, Smart Cruise Control status, navigation, Blind Spot Detection, Forward Collision Warning, speed limit, Lane Departure Warning System and audio system data is projected at a perceived virtual distance approximately six feet ahead of the driver for maximum legibility while driving.
    Genesis also offers an electronic parking brake with Automatic Vehicle Hold for convenience when driving in traffic. Automatic Vehicle Hold automatically holds the Genesis at a stop until the accelerator pedal is depressed, such as at a traffic signal or in stopped traffic. The vehicle hold re-engages whenever the vehicle is brought to a complete stop. Genesis also includes proximity-key entry convenience with push-button start as standard equipment.
    Genesis offers an ultra-premium, Lexicon® Discrete Logic 7 Surround audio system with 17 speakers, Logic 7 Surround Sound processing and 12-channel digital amplifier with 900-watts of equivalent output, sure to satisfy the most demanding audiophile. The system also includes SiriusXM® Radio, HD Radio, and iPod/USB auxiliary media input jacks. The standard Lexicon system offers 14 speakers, with Discrete Logic 7 Surround processing and a 12-channel DSP amplifier with 900-watts of equivalent output.
    An optional premium DIS navigation system for Genesis offers a 9.2-inch High Definition display, with 720p high definition (a segment first), a 64GB Solid State Drive (SSD) for multimedia, and premium Lexicon audio system. This premium system also includes Gracenote® album art, junction view with lane guidance, advanced voice recognition, and music/image/video storage via USB download (approximately 30GB of usable storage).
    The new standard audio-navigation system, displayed by an 8.0-inch touchscreen, is packed with integrated technology, from Bluetooth to navigation, satellite and HD radio, hands-free and app-supporting software.
    Genesis cluster displays utilize high-resolution, electroluminescent TFT LCD technology, with a standard 4.3-inch TFT LCD cluster display, and an available 7.0-inch TFT LCD cluster display.
    A simple pop-up message appears to help pair a phone and the voice recognition software understands street addresses and cities all in one sentence. The route screen displays speed limits, details the next three maneuvers, shows real highway signage and has junction views with lane guidance. Lane guidance outlines the lane or lanes the driver needs to stay in when a highway splits. Junction view uses street and actual road sign images to match what the driver will see when arriving at the next maneuver.
    2015 Genesis will be the first Hyundai to offer its second-generation Blue Link and infotainment features. The scope of these new features is broad and has something special to offer every driver, including:

    Destination Search powered by Google – users will be able to take advantage of Google’s powerful destination search via the Blue Link button (voice recognition) and navigation display, or through myhyundai.com and the Blue Link mobile app sending a destination to their car
    Remote Start– now includes an engine timer (from 1 to 10 min.), remote stop, remote climate control and remote defroster
    Automatic Collision Notification (ACN) and SOS Emergency Assistance –includes user-selected emergency contacts notification via SMS and e-mail

    The Genesis Intelligent Assistant® is a proactive app for automobiles intended to save the driver time and provide an even higher level of convenience. The app combines Blue Link features, data from the vehicle, the owner’s smartphone, and the internet with multiple layers of intelligence. This allows the Genesis Intelligent Assistant app to send proactive notifications and recommendations to the Genesis owner in preparation for their drive.
    Genesis owners will no longer need to remember to remote start their car on a hot or cold day. The Genesis Intelligent Assistant app will remind them via their smartphone.
    Genesis Intelligent Assistant Functionality:

    By providing the app their commuting details and access to their smartphone’s calendar, owners can have the app automatically estimate appropriate departure times and send reminders for any upcoming appointments that require a drive
    Departure reminder messages are determined by up-to-the-minute commute times from the user’s current location to the destination, accounting for traffic
    Temperature outside the vehicle is determined via zip code prior to the estimated departure time. If the temperature is above or below the default level, the user will receive a notification, asking if they would like to remote start their vehicle for heating or cooling.
    Recommendations for gas stations are provided, allowing the user to select a station and send the location to the vehicle’s navigation system.
    Vehicle health status will also be communicated through the user’s smartphone when an action is required. These notifications allow the customer to schedule service for their Genesis directly from the app.
    Many additional Blue Link features are included within the app, making it a single, integrated solution for all of the driver’s vehicle needs
    The Genesis Intelligent Assistant app is a framework for the future with additional proactive functionality progressively available to provide the customer with the ultimate luxuries of time and convenience

    Genesis demonstrates the Google Glass app as part of how wearable technology and Blue Link fit into a customer’s lifestyle. The app currently contains the core Blue Link functions as building blocks for future activities. Partnering with Station Digital Media and Covisint, Hyundai plans to expand the app features, building on the concept of “Time as the Ultimate Luxury” and leveraging the proactive functionality of the Genesis Intelligent Assistant app.
    Released in limited numbers to early customers known as “Explorers,” Google Glass is a computerized, lightweight headset that can project text and images for the wearer to see on a special optical display. Google Glass Explorers can perform functions through voice commands, swipes or taps on a thin touchpad along the side of the frame.
    Through the new app, Hyundai owners will be able to use Google Glass to access Blue Link’s vehicle safety, service and infotainment features. The Google Glass Blue Link app includes a host of popular functions at launch, including:
    Remote vehicle start
    Remote door lock/unlock
    Remote Find My Car (search for your vehicle location to receive directions to it)
    Point-of-Interest search sent to the Hyundai navigation system
    Search for a gas station to send to your car
    Call roadside assistance
    Talk to a Blue Link agent
    Locate nearby dealers

    The Genesis next-generation infotainment system features:
    Integration with Apple’s Siri-powered “Eyes Free” mode
    Functionality allows owners of compatible vehicles to perform a variety of in-car tasks without taking their eyes off the road.
    SD Navigation
    Pandora® integration with smartphone
    SoundHound® integration with internal modem
    SiriusXM® Audio – 6 presets (record, play, pause, back)
    SiriusXM®Travel Link and Traffic
    Sports scores and schedules
    Stock ticker
    Movie times
    Fuel prices
    Advanced voice recognition
    Screen-swipe technology
    Music, video, image storage

    Hyundai’s telematics services program, Assurance Connected Care, is standard for three years on all 2015 Genesis sedans equipped with Blue Link. This innovative ownership program provides Hyundai owners with proactive safety and car care services via the Hyundai Blue Link telematics system. These services include Automatic Collision Notification, Enhanced Roadside Assistance, Automatic Diagnostic Trouble Code Notification, Monthly Vehicle Health Report and in-vehicle Car Care maintenance scheduling.
    Hyundai also recently introduced an all-new mobile application for the Blue Link telematics platform. This mobile app allows subscribers to remotely access various optional Blue Link features and services through compatible mobile devices. Completely redesigned, the app has been significantly enhanced from the previous version and boasts a new user experience, faster navigation and innovative new features. Google Android and Apple iOS users can download the app from Google Play or Apple iTunes, respectively. A BlackBerry version is also available.
    Blue Link is an innovative telematics solution that brings seamless connectivity for safety, service and infotainment capabilities and is offered in three packages: Assurance, Essentials and Guidance. More details regarding Hyundai Blue Link are available at www.HyundaiBlueLink.com.

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