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regfootball

09 autoshow observations

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normally this would go in the auto show section but mpls is not a major show so its basically like going car shopping, but i thought i would post some observations. more people read the lounge anyways.

it was a really scaled down autoshow. no concepts hardly and not much for glitz in displays. nearly no models. GM in particular was next to nothing. it really made the GM portion look sad. Gave the impression that GM is dead.

on the whole, it was a ripoff for 10 bucks admission and 10 bucks to park, but fortunately, Ford and Mercury each will be sending me 50 buck gift cards after a test drive. that will make it pay off.

comments......

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Acura- decent display. not much traffic but they had a lot of cars. this was my first chance at seeing the TL and TSX. the RDX i always thought was ok but i didnt like the exterior and its overall overpriced. the RL is redundant and lame. but i have to admit i was surprised sitting in the TSX. the car is to me now right sized and i was not prepared to like the interior like i did. the one i liked was tan interior with silverish accents. i liked the dash and interior quality. i did not expect too based on pictures. definitely surprised me. perfect size, and nice interior. what the TSX needs is a turbo (that doesn't inhale gas like the RDX). The TL and TSX are close to indistinguishable to the naked eye which makes me wonder why they have both or why the RL exists. The styling for both is evolved by Honda from the last gen Maxima I feel. Generic but nice and i do not like the meat slicer grille but overall its a likable design if generic. I'll admit, the TSX may be on my short list now and the TL i have a little more positive to say about it now, but the TSX in my mind is the one to get. I have liked the MDX but its pointless when a lambda is a better cheaper solution.

Audi- only checked out the new Q5. Audi continues to master interiors and the Q5 is no exception. This is the quintissential chick lux SUV. Kinda pointless though with the A4 wagon?

BMW- i only sat in the Aztek, er.....X6 this year. Its really one of those 'what's the point' vehicles. really? its nicely done from an execution standpoint, but it seriously is a 'why'? the trunk is small and the car is huge and ugly. Is this what BMW wants to be known for?

Buick- new LaCrosse is indeed sexy. Wow, but from sight the interior plastic looks cheap. Does GM ever learn? Interior fit looks like it needs to be cleaner too, even if the design is sexy. Buick was getting some love though, amazingly. The Lucerne and Enclave had plenty of oldsters checking it out. I still like the Lucerne, even with its ancient powertrains.

Cadillac- the new CTS wagon was there. HOT!!!! i love it. the CTS was getting lots of love and the V series was awesome. they had like 3 CTS-v's. The CTS interiors are well done! Proof of what GM can do. The STS refresh was even nice. I could take one in a pinch. I continue to like the SRX. The SRX is underrated and its a shame the dowdy wagon look killed the car's sales. THe new SRX was on the platform and honestly, it looked hot. Interior looked good but lets hope the fit and finish come through. You cannot tell the new SRX is a TE platform in the flesh. I wish GM could fully fund Cadillac.

Chevrolet- I will do a separate write up on the new Camaro. They had 3 and i sat in a couple of them. I like HHR even if its getting dated. They had a cobalt SS coupe and sedan and i liked them. they look really good in SS trim. the seats are really nice, even if its just cloth. the malibu needs better plastic. the new Equinox is HOT. assuming the interior plastic is ok. Traverse was getting lots of love. Not much traffic for the trucks. Was the impala even there? Aveo is half ass. I think they had a Z06 there, i didnt sit in any corvettes (it was a quick trip). I think Chevy has a chance if each new model is great. Efforts like the Traverse make me think its doable. The Cruze cannot come soon enough.

Chrysler- they had a large display and it was nice. Certainly not throwing in the towel. Many 300's and Sebrings. I spent a lot of time in a 300 limited v6. i really like it. tan interior. Too bad the car new is so pricey. There is indeed real substance to these cars. I kind of think Chrylser needs to get that phoenix engine and 6 speed tranny in there yesterday. Lots of sebrings and a cpl PT cruisers. Some Aspens.

Dodge- also lots of cars on display. They had several challengers. That car is growing on me. I also liked the Chargers (i wish the magnum was still around). The Avenger is bad, really, but they had several of those and the minivans. The minivans were a botched effort plain and simple. Good value, sure, but the interiors are so bad on the new vans. Just terrible. The town and country interiors are at least passable. Lots of Rams and other trucks.

Ford- I did not like the 010 Taurus like i thought. Will have to wait to sit in one that is not on a platform. Ford was getting lots of love. The 010 Fusion refresh is nice, but to me its merely a new nose and rear and powertrain improvements. The side view is still dated to me. Nonetheless it is to me one of those 'price is right' vehicles. The fusion sport was real nice. Focus and Edge and even Flex were getting lots of love. I saw the 010 mustang from a bit away and it looks nice. interior refresh is improved but didn't really seem awesome to me. Edge sport interior seemed out of character to me. Edge interior needs a refresh. Transit Connect was cool! but clearly is for business use. The tall interior would be way spookey as a family vehicle.

GMC- was slow. I didn't even wander in there.

Honda- I was amazed, no one was checking out Hondas! Maybe it was a fluke, but the only hondas getting love were a few accords and the Fit, and even then, not that much. The Civics (had a lot of them) were being ignored. I still like the Element, and some of the Accords with tan interior and higher option level to me were ok but basic accords are dreadful. Civic sucks. Fit is overrated. The interior is flimsy and cheap (if better than the Civic).

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The TSX will be available with a 280-hp V6. It's a nice car... the old model really found a niche as a not-quite-luxury-but-high-quality midsize sedan.

I'd take a four-cylinder TSX over the excessively large and semi-flimsy feeling Accord V6.

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The TSX will be available with a 280-hp V6. It's a nice car... the old model really found a niche as a not-quite-luxury-but-high-quality midsize sedan.

I'd take a four-cylinder TSX over the excessively large and semi-flimsy feeling Accord V6.

will the v6 have available stick? i would like a 250hp four pop turbo.

new TSX feels a whole class larger than the last one.

i'll have the rest of the brands comments later..

Edited by regfootball
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reg, better check the fine print on the Ford offer. I just recently received my $50 card from the Philly Auto Show and my wife was unable to process hers (she was told only one issued per household). I doubt Ford will issue you two, one from Ford and one from Mercury. Try it though if you want; however, I'll be pissed if it works since they denied my wife's request.
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