With about 50 new vehicle debuts and more than 500,000 estimated guests at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit over the next week, there will be something on display for everyone. Here are the cars you need to see in person if you’re planning to attend.
Of course, the Detroit Auto Show is about showing off your newest and prettiest models, and the 2013 edition is no exception. Industry juggernauts, updated for a new generation, include the 2014 Lexus IS and 2015 Ford Atlas Concept. It wouldn’t be Detroit without a major muscle car debut, and the 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray takes the cake as the most talked-about model this year.
But the show promises to provide a glimpse into now only the future new models you’ll see on public roads soon, but also hints at changes to the very shape of cars in general. As younger buyers are shying away from giant SUVs and demanding dynamic driving from cars of all sizes, automakers are scrambling to diversify their lineups with more varied styles and body types. That means a lot of experimentation, and wiggle room to take risks. The 2013 NAIAS isn’t just about new cars; it’s about new design.
For instance, the four-door coupe style seems to grow larger and larger with each passing year. Make sure to check out the pavement-churning Audi RS7, an elegant yet beastly interpretation of the unique style, as well as the Hyundai HCD-14, proof that affordable brands are willing to test the waters previously charted only by luxury German brands.
In fact, the Mercedes-Benz CLS started the whole crazy trend almost ten years ago. Now that the CLS competition includes the likes of BMW, Audi and potentially Hyundai, Mercedes is turning its attention to another new segment – the entry-level four-door coupe with their new CLA.
The CLA incorporates many design cues from the larger CLS, including a chopped roofline and flowing side profile, but in the body of a compact sedan meant to lure a younger demographic. As we explained in this piece last week, luxury brands are keen to attract young and first-time buyers, and the CLA is both unique and affordable enough to do that – and likely force competitors to follow in its footsteps.
Other companies are toying with creating entirely new segments, as well. The Cadillac ELR will become the only two-door luxury hybrid when it goes on sale later this year, and the smart forstars concept dubs itself a Sports Utility Coupe.