Tag Archives: 2009 North American International Auto Show

BlueSport concept returns VW to populist roadster roots

This gallery contains 6 photos.

One of the few genuine surprises at Detroit was the world premier of the Volkswagen Concept BlueSport, a mid-engine, minimalist roadster. BlueSport was created to forward several propositions; that a fun-to-drive car can be made in a sustainable format; that a compact roadster is equally suited to thrive in both urban and “winding road” settings; that VW’s design language will return to simple and emotional shapes. Continue reading

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Toyota Prius

This gallery contains 3 photos.

If you want to understand what the new-gen Toyota Prius is all about, just consider this: Toyota’s objective is to sell 400,000 units each year by 2010. This will make Prius one of Toyota’s top selling global vehicles, right alongside venerable nameplates, like Camry and Corolla. Can you say “mainstream?” Continue reading

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Lincoln MKT

This gallery contains 5 photos.

The Lincoln version of the Ford Flex crossover made its debut in Detroit. Like the Flex, this new MKT is assembled at Ford’s facility in Oakville, Ont. But, as you can see, it doesn’t look anything like the squared-off Flex. The rising beltline over the rear quarter is perhaps its most distinctive line, and helps give the vehicle a lot of character, particular when viewed from the rear (check out those wrap-around tail lamps!). Continue reading

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A test track yes, but not for speed

This gallery contains 10 photos.

A rather unique part of this year’s Detroit show is the indoor test track for trying out electric and hybrid vehicles. The speed limit is 10 mph. And it’s not too big. But it is beautifully landscaped, complete with two ponds. Continue reading

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Hyundai Genesis and Ford F-150 win gold

This gallery contains 15 photos.

Winning the coveted North American Car of the Year title is a breakthrough achievement for Hyundai and a historical first for Korean cars. The Ford F-150, on the other hand, is an old pro at this. Previous full redesigns of the long-running best-seller had effectively won Truck of the Year trophies twice before, in 1996 and 2004. The winners were announced at the start of the first media day of this year’s North American International Auto Show in Detroit, on January 11. Continue reading

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Now inside the great walls in Detroit

This gallery contains 13 photos.

Chinese carmakers were by no means at their first visit to the North-American Auto Show. This time, though, they would not be relegated to the lower level or outside corridors of Detroit’s Cobo Hall. Continue reading

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Jaguar XFR

This gallery contains 15 photos.

Jaguar had a few things to growl about at Detroit. Most notable was the introduction of its all-new-from-the-ground-up 5.0-litre V8, which finds its way into both the new XF sedans and the XK coupes and convertibles. It purported to feature the world’s first spray-guided direct injection system. Naturally aspirated versions are good for 380 hp @ 3,500 rpm and 461 lb-ft of torque, from 2,500 to 5,500 rpm. Continue reading

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Subaru Legacy Concept

This gallery contains 17 photos.

Going against the current at this year’s Detroit show, Subaru was riding the wave of an excellent year that saw a rise in sales as well as market share. Officials had stories of “honest long-term value, reliability and strong retained value” and of customers coming to the brand while moving from large SUVs to more efficient vehicles such as the Outback. Continue reading

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Kia Soul’ster

This gallery contains 2 photos.

Weeks only after launching the production version of the highly-promising, streetwise, urban-chic Soul compact at the Los Angeles auto show, Kia shows yet another concept variation on this theme in Detroit. Introduced as ‘soul-stirring’, the Soul’ster (get it?) is a fun-focused, two-door version of the Soul Continue reading

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Chrysler Electric Vehicles

This gallery contains 8 photos.

While major competitors are locked into a race to bring a single extended-range electric or even a plug-in hybrid car to market, the beleaguered Chrysler Corporation has introduced no fewer than five different electric-drive vehicle platforms in Detroit. Furthermore, the first vehicle to be spun off one of these platforms would be produced for North America in 2010 and three more by 2013. Continue reading

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