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A look into the FUTURE

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According to Forbes here is an insight into the cars we'll be driving by 2014.

Did i just do a Honda plug via subliminal messages?

Everybody knows the auto world has shifted. The trick is divining which brands have got the gumption to last.

Now, with President Obama's new efficiency standards requiring a fleet-wide fuel economy average of 35.5 miles per gallon, automakers have their work cut out for them.

Domestic carmakers in particular are gearing up to battle forthcoming offerings from new-to-the-U.S.Fiat ( FIA - news - people ), with its diminutive 55.5-mile-per-gallon Fiat 500, and Chinese newcomer BYD, maker of the staid hybrid-electric F3DM sedan.

Motor City had better get cracking. It takes four years to produce a market-ready vehicle, and a typical lifecycle for one model is seven years. While we wait to see what brands emerge victorious, Honda's ( HMC - news - people ) mod CR-Z and Ford's ( F - news - people ) "eco-boosted" Euro models point to the types of cars we can expect by 2014.

Incremental Improvement

Just don't get your hopes up for lots of choices when it comes to plug-in cars. Automakers insist there's still much to improve about the humble combustion engine, and they plan to eek out all the improvement they can get.

Tom Plucinsky, a spokesman for BMW, says the company will bring a gasoline-powered and highly efficient X1 compact SUV to market by 2014.

"There's no breakthrough," Plucinsky says. "It's all little things that can add up. We've made big advances over the last five years or so in the efficiency of the gasoline engine, but we think that there's another 10% there."

BMW will find that 10% by using smaller (read: lighter), forced-induction engines that generate more power. (Plucinsky says naturally aspirated engines will be relatively nonexistent by 2014). Ford and Mercedes have also said they'll bring 4-cylinder, turbo-charged engines to the U.S. in the next several years.

Audi has joined the light-engine surge as well, committing to building a next-generation S5 that weighs hundreds of pounds less than the current version. Audi's Bradley Stertz says advances in aluminum construction will lighten its load, making it more fuel-efficient.

China Rising

In the meantime, Americans can expect a trickle of vehicles from afar. Italian-run Fiat and Alfa Romeo will likely have vehicles in U.S. showrooms by 2014. But the real news lies further east: China.

At the Detroit Auto Show Chinese automakers Brilliance and BYD ("Build Your Dreams") showed cars that could eventually reach the states, perhaps branded under a different name. Geely and Chery are other Chinese automakers with ideas for expansion outside the East.

Lincoln Merrihew, senior vice president of business solutions for market research firm TNS, says he expects a China-made car to hit in five years or less.

"It'll be a mixture of capabilities and bravado that will determine who comes in under their own flag," Merrihew says.

here is a picture gallery of all the cars on the list.


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im glad the cadillac is high on the list. one thing that i also like is this comment on the article.

Notice not a single car listed is made in America, save the Cadillac Converj. However this electric car has yet to have its technology confirmed. I don't fault GM however.

You can thank the UAW and the US Government for killing the Automobile Industry in the USA. The greedy thugs in the UAW and Govt Regulations, as well as Lawyers who sue whenever the wind blows, have taken a powerful national asset and decimated it. I do not blame Mgt of these companies, as they have had crushing Legacy payments, benefits, and wages to pay for decades. GM/Ford/Chrysler have lacked true resources for decades and have made below average products because that's all they COULD make, and sell. Poor interiors, substandard components, etc... have all been ways of putting cars out there at a competitive price, but just weren't competitive. In order to be competitive from a product perspective, they'd need to sell at an uncompetitive price due to these enormous costs incurred by lawyers, Union Thugs and excessive Govt Regulation.


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