2010 Los Angeles Auto Show
Rolling Out the Red Carpet in L.A. for Fall's Debuts
Yes, times are changing, but there are still plenty of cargo-carrying, tow-capable, off-road-worthy sport/utilities being shown at the Los Angeles auto show this year. While admittedly, most of the headlines will be reserved for electric vehicles and hybrids, there are some other cool vehicles you’ll be able to see in trucktrend.com’s coverage. This is the show where the Rover Range Rover Evoque makes its North American debut, and you’ll get more info on the Dodge Durango. Also, check out the Nissan Murano CrossCabriolet, the first crossover convertible since the days of the first-gen RAV4. Interested in a small van? How about the new Mazda5? Then there’s the Saab 9-4X, which is the first sport/utility vehicle from that company since the 9-7x departed after 2009. Things are looking up in the truck and SUV markets, and it’s getting exciting. Keep coming back to trucktrend.com for all the latest auto show news and updates.
2012 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque Five-Door
Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland Summit
2011 Nissan Murano Cross Cabriolet
Toyota RAV4 EV
2012 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque Five-Door
The cute 'ute formerly known as the LRX was unveiled in coupe form at Paris, but the five-door Range Rover Evoque is a natural step for the purveyor of large, luxurious SUVs. To clear extra interior space for its people-carry intentions, the five-door version is 1.2 inches taller inside the cabin (thanks to a higher roofline) and over 2 inches wider to gain more shoulder room. Like the crossover-coupe design, this Land Rover is intended for four total occupants.
Other than the additional interior space, the Evoque five-door shares the same powertrain configurations. Motivation comes from a 2.2-liter diesel four-cylinder with either 148 or 187 horsepower; the gasoline option is a Ford-sourced 2.0-liter EcoBoost inline-four developing 237 horsepower. Front- and all-wheel drive will move the wheels.
2012 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque Five Door Prestige Front Three Quar Click to view Gallery Because it bears the Land Rover badge, the Evoque must carry some semblance of off-road utility. The company's Terrain Response system assists on loose surfaces while an optional Adaptive Dynamics with MagneRide dampers help on tarmac. Interior appointments do not disappoint as the usual luxury features will be found, including leather, metallic surfaces, full-size panoramic glass roof, surround cameras, and advanced entertainment systems.
The Range Rover Evoque goes on sale in over 160 markets during Summer 2011 and the five-door model will be available in three trim levels: Pure, Prestige, and Dynamic. The range-topping Dynamic is fitted with striking, 20-inch wheels and contrasting roof and spoiler colors will be up for order. Pricing is expected to start in excess of $40,000.
There's a "changing of the guard" element to the facelifted 2012 Mazda5 -- in U.S.-spec trim; the car made its global debut in March at the 2010 Geneva Auto Show -- sharing the Los Angeles Auto Show spotlight with the Shinari Concept. The updated 5, you see, is likely the last Mazda to bear the "Nagare" design language while the Shinari is the example of the Japanese automakers "Kodo" language that should begin propagating throughout its lineup shortly.
Aside from the new sheetmetal, the 2012 Mazda5 gets an updated interior similar to that of the Mazda3 compact and a new four-cylinder engine that provides slightly more horsepower. The 2.5-liter mill makes 157 horsepower in the Mazda5, a 4-horse improvement over the outgoing 2.3-liter unit. Like the old powerplant, it will be offered with a manual or automatic transmission, though we don't yet know if either will be receiving an extra cog. Currently, both transmissions offered on the Mazda5 are five-speed units.
2011 Mitsubishi i-MiEV
The i-MiEV has grown substantially in order to suit Americans' super-sized tastes. The U.S.-spec car has grown nearly a foot in length, bringing overall length to 12 feet. Width has grown nearly four inches, as have the front and rear track dimensions. Height, however, remains virtually unchanged at five feet.
Predictably, the i-MiEV's bumper fascias have morphed in order to make the micro machine DOT-compliant. Up front, the i-MiEV receives a chunky front bumper, accented by a revised hood stamping with stronger character lines. Large turn signal indicators wrap into both the front and rear fenders, which have been flared to accommodate the wider track. The clear tail lamp lenses of the JDM i-MiEV have been replaced with red lenses, which are complemented by the addition of round red reflectors near the lower edge of the bumper.
Inside, Mitsubishi did more than simply convert the car to left-hand-drive. Designers were given some freedom to spruce up the cabin, adding a new upper dashboard, flush-mounted radio design, vertically arranged HVAC controls, and a striking two-tone color scheme. Although we'll reserve judgment until we step foot inside, the revisions do appear more upscale than JDM cabins.
Underneath the skin, the hardware is identical to i-MiEVs sold in Japan and Europe, meaning U.S.-bound cars will couple a 63-horsepower electric motor to the rear wheels, along with a lithium-ion battery pack. We hear, however, that the difference may lie primarily in calibration. Sources close to the automaker tell us both regenerative braking and throttle input have been revised for our market, likely to make the i-MiEV more at home on high-speed American highways.
2011 Nissan Quest
The 2011 Nissan Quest is a vehicle that apes the squared-off Nissan Forum concept car of 2008. The exterior is a marked departure from the rounded body of the last Quest, with a high beltline and what appears to be a pretty long wheelbase. Inside, Nissan moved the gauge cluster back where it belongs -- leaving behind memories of the center-mounted controls of the last-gen Quest -- and added Nissan/Infiniti's familiar infotainment system.
We're still waiting on information regarding powertrain options, but we know Nissan has a plentiful supply of engines to compete against the new 2011 Toyota Sienna and Honda Odyssey.
Though our first glimpse of the Quest came at the New York Auto Show last spring, we haven't received much in the way of updates until now. The Quest bowed out of the market for 2010, for a variety of reasons, but we're interested to see how the new one will play against the new Sienna and Odyssey.
2011 Nissan Murano Cross Cabriolet
When Nissan first announced it would build a convertible version of its Murano crossover, heads were scratching all over the industry. Well at least Nissan can say it has created 'the world's first all-wheel drive crossover convertible.' Um, congratulations? Behold, the 2011 Nissan Murano Cross Cabriolet.
Here's a snippet from Nissan about its new creation:
The world's first all-wheel drive crossover convertible, delivers the open-air exhilaration of a convertible while extending the versatility of the Murano in exciting new ways. With room for four adults, space for golf bags or luggage (even with the top down), and a premium level interior, the Murano CrossCabriolet represents a breakthrough in concept and design. Set to go on sale in early 2011.
Admittedly, Nissan's product planners don't expect the new Murano CrossCabriolet to sell in droves. "It's not going to be a volume car," said Brian Carolin, senior vice president for Nissan sales and marketing, in a recent Automotive News interview. "But there's a degree of bravery for us to bring out a car like that right now. It will surprise a lot of people."
The two-door is said to be the world's first all-wheel drive crossover convertible. It melds the "sophistication of a sedan" with the "utility of a sport utility," says Carolin, and of course, the fun of driving a convertible.
Engineers faced numerous feats when creating the CrossCabriolet. Rigidity had to be upped to compensate for the loss of its B-pillars, so the A-pillars gained significant reinforcement. To keep the standard model's profile, the cabrio's two doors are 7.9 inches longer than the standard Murano's front doors. Its canvas roof (available in either black or light brown) employs a glass window for improved longevity. And despite the new configuration, aerodynamic efficiency remains tidy at 0.39 Cd compared to the Murano's 0.37 Cd.
As there will only be one trim level when it goes on sale early next year, exterior features are generous. From HID bi-xenon headlamps and LED taillights, to fog lights and body colored bumpers and facades, the CrossCabriolet will arrive at dealerships plentifully equipped. Twenty-inch split five-spoke wheels cloaked in a titanium finish tuck under each of the bulbous fenders. The model's six colors include Sunset Bronze, Caribbean, Merlot, Platinum Graphite, Super Black, and Pearl White.
It's the same fully equipped story inside. Three leather colors - black, cashmere, and camel - can be had in a diagonal quilt pattern with double stitching. Half-matte chrome and wood finishes can be specified as well. A heated steering wheel and front seats, Nissan Hard Drive Navigation System, Bose audio system, and Bluetooth arrive standard.
Toyota Rav4 EV
For the moment, Toyota's only released these two teaser images of their nifty new badge and shout-out to Tesla on the speedometer. Further, the company has simply announced that the Rav4 EV will be at LA, but has kept all other details to itself. That means we won't know the vehicle's range, charge time, launch date or price until next week at the earliest. Unless more images are released, we won't know what it'll look like until next week either, though if the original Rav4 EV is any indication, the changes won't be too radical save perhaps some aerodynamic improvements.
2011 Saab 9-4x
Good news, Saab fans. Another new production model is headed our way in a few months' time. According to the official Twitter feed for the 2010 Los Angeles Auto Show, the 2011 Saab 9-4x crossover will finally make its production debut at the L.A. show in November.
Although the concept's funky ski racks and flex-fuel capability may not cross into production, we're expecting the production 2011 9-4x to otherwise mirror the show car, which launched at the 2008 Detroit Auto Show. At the time, we called the concept a thinly veiled version of the production vehicle, and based upon the numerous spy photos and prototypes we've seen since, we'll stick with that assessment.
In concept form, the 9-4x was powered by General Motors' direct-injection turbocharged 2.0-liter I-4, which produced nearly 300 horsepower when running on E85 ethanol blends. We wouldn't be surprised to see such an engine make its way into the final product to make it more Saab-ish, but given the 9-4x shares its Theta Premium underpinnings with the Cadillac SRX, it may also be offered with a 3.0-liter direct-injection V-6 or a turbocharged 2.8-liter V-6. Regardless, expect engine offerings to be paired with a six-speed automatic transmission, and Saab's Haldex-sourced XWD all-wheel-drive system.
Although production of the 9-3 and 9-5 still occurs within Saab's factory gates in Trollhattan, Sweden, the 9-4x will continue to be supplied by GM, and will likely be built alongside the SRX in Ramos Arizpe, Mexico. Expect finalized details of this new crossover to emerge later in November, and deliveries to commence in early 2011.
GMC Granite CPU Concept
Arguably, the true surprise came not from Cadillac, but GMC. Designers expounded upon the Granite concept shown earlier this year to create a stylish, compact pickup truck. The micro-ute features only a four-foot bed, but a trick split tailgate design allows the cargo space to securely haul items up to six feet in length. At this stage, the Granite truck is merely a design exercise, but it shows GM (a. is pleased with critical and consumer reaction to the Granite's design, and (b. isn't ignoring the conspicuous lack of a small, efficient pickup in our market.
GM So-Cal Salt Flat Vehicles
After partnering with the reborn So-Cal Speed Shops in 2005, GM decided to test the mettle of its Ecotec range of four-cylinder engines by setting speed records at the Bonneville Speed Flats. Two different pod-shaped Lakesters (patterned after the original Belly Tanker from the '50s, which was also on display) took to the flats, as did the chopped HHR shown here. To maintain a consistent image, designers crafted a push vehicle from an identically-painted SSR.
2001 Chevrolet Borrego Concept
Arguably, the only recent GM vehicle -- concept or otherwise -- that came close to resembling the idea and packaging of the Granite CPU was the 2001 Chevrolet Borrego, which was also trotted out for the gala. Interestingly, the Borrego tapped into Subaru heritage -- not only was the crossover built upon Impreza mechanicals to showcase GM's partnership with Fuji Heavy Industries, but it also sported a pair of seats in the open-air cargo area. If that isn't BRAT-like, we don't know what is...
Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland Summit
The Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland Summit is distinguished from regular Overland models by the Rugged Brown paint and chrome inserts on the front grille (three other colors are available). Attractive 20-inch polished alloy wheels help justify the Summit's price of $43,275 for rear-wheel-drive models and $46,775 for four-wheel-drive models.
Inside, genuine Black Olive burl wood trim complements the black lower and New Saddle upper interior trim. The Nappa leather seats feature accent piping and unique stitching. Berber floor mats are also part of the package as is a heated, leather and wood steering wheel. Buying the Summit model means purchasing a Grand Cherokee with standard Adaptive Cruise Control, Forward Collision Warning, Blind Spot Monitoring, and Rear Cross-path detection systems.
2011 Jeep Liberty Jet
The Jeep Liberty Jet also aims at the upscale market, yet in a smaller overall package. Available on Sport and Limited models, the Liberty Jet package includes 20-inch polished alloy wheels, blacked-out headlights, and chrome trim on the roof rails, side mirror caps, and front valance opening, and body side moldings. The Liberty Jet is offered with an upgraded sound system, a rear parking assist system, available leather seats, and available power front seats.
Choose from Bright Silver, Dark Charcoal, Brilliant Black, and Blackberry for the Liberty Jet. The package is priced at $1495 on the Sport and $995 on the Limited.
2011 Dodge Durango
The all-new 2011 Durango delivers excitement and refinement with world-class suspension and performance. It’s a driver’s SUV that delivers impressive on-road performance and capability with the flexibility of a three-row SUV.
Benchmarked against premium performance SUV’s in the market, Durango delivers modernized refinement with electronics, suspension and structural characteristics that are usually found at much higher price points.
The unibody structure is built with a selection of high-strength and ultra-high-strength steels that improve driving dynamics by integrating the suspension with the body — reducing flex when compared with the previous body-on-frame design. In fact, 52 percent of the Durango’s structure is made from these advanced steels. More than 5,500 welds and more than 4,100 mm of arc welding contribute to torsional stiffness levels greater than the Mercedes-Benz GL.
The all-new short/long arm front suspension and isolated multi-link rear suspension features isolated front and rear cradles for improved on-road handling and comfort.
The all-new Durango delivers on the pavement with aggressive shock and spring rates and large sway bars to handle body roll in hard turning maneuvers. Available electro-hydraulic performance steering, along with standard electronic stability control also contribute to maintain tire grip and vehicle stability.
A robust structure, impressive braking and unexpected stability contribute to the Durango’s best-in-class trailer tow capability. On models equipped with the Pentastar V-6 engine, the Durango can tow up to 6,200 pounds—more than the V-6 and small V-8 that were available in the previous Durango. When coupled with the 5.7-liter HEMI® V-8 engine, the all-new Dodge Durango offers trailer-tow capability of up to 7,400 pounds—more weight than a 24-foot boat and trailer.
A drag coefficient of approximately 0.35 enables an aerodynamic improvement of more than 14 percent compared with its predecessor, contributing to quiet interior and improved fuel efficiency.
Inside, the new Durango boasts 28 different seating configurations, with as much as 85 cubic feet of cargo and storage areas, leaving plenty of legroom for passengers and gear. With second- and third-row seats folded flat, the Durango can fit a 6-foot couch with room for a coffee table, or for do-it-yourselfers, enough 10-foot 2x4s to build a tree house. Creating versatile and usable cargo space is important to the segment.
Visibility over the third row was critical. Engineering and design worked together to develop a simple solution. When the third row is empty, a single motion actuator can drop the headrests with the push of a button to increase visibility.
Every path that leads to the interior is sealed in one or more ways and joints are made as tight as possible by using sealer between panels, which expands during the paint process. Laminated glass comes standard in all models. Durango features a double wall separating the engine compartment and the vehicle cabin to limit the amount of under-hood engine noise to occupants.
Audi Q5 Hybrid Quattro
Audi has released official details on the Q5 Hybrid Quattro, a Los Angeles Auto Show debut. The SUV will pair a 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder engine to an electric motor for a claimed U.S. 33.6 mpg.
Combining the two drive systems, the Q5 Hybrid has a total of 245 horsepower and 354 pound-feet of torque. Drive carefully and you might be able to go 1.86 miles gas-free at a speed of about 37 mph. The Q5 can also cruise at speeds of up to 62 mph using only electric power. We've become dubious of such claims and are eager to test these out.
The Q5 Hybrid Quattro is being positioned as the high-end model in the SUV's lineup. A four-cylinder Q5 starts at $36,075 while $43,375 is the entry fee if you want V-6 power. This could mean a starting price in the $45,000-$49,999 range. For comparison, the Lexus RX 450h V-6 ybrid with all-wheel drive carries a $45,700 MSRP.
Just because the Audi Q5 Hybrid Quattro starts with a four-cylinder engine doesn't mean it's slow. In fact, 0-62 mph takes 7.1 seconds. The nearly 20-gallon fuel tank, Audi notes, means this Q5 has a diesel-like range, though probably not if you are traveling at the vehicle's 138-mph top speed.
The 2.0-liter engine we've come to know and love in other Audis is altered for use in the Hybrid. The turbo has been retuned and the ECU helps make smooth transitions between operating modes. An eight-speed automatic transmission is part of the package, as is engine start-stop technology. By itself, the electric motor makes 45 horsepower and 155 pound-feet of torque. The lithium-ion battery system doesn't have a huge effect on the cargo capacity, Audi says.
There are five drive modes and a large display on the navigation screen can show the operating states and power flows of the hybrid with "elegant graphics."
Visually, not much has changed but the 19-inch 10-spoke wheels are hybrid-exclusive and there are plenty of badges to remind you this is Audi's hybrid Q5. The tailgate and hood are now made from aluminum to minimize curb weight, which is 4409 pounds.