2010

2010

Kia has unveiled the company’s first ever hybrid model at the Los Angeles Auto Show. The new Optima Hybrid will go on sale early next year and targets models like the 2011 Ford Fusion Hybrid.

The 2011 Optima Hybrid features a Transmission-Mounted-Electric-Drive (TMED) layout with the electric motor separated from the transmission gear-set. The new model will also be among the first full hybrid systems on the market to use a typical step-ratio automatic transmission.

The Optima can be driven in zero emission, full-electric drive mode at speeds up to 62 mph or in blended gas-electric mode at any speed. As for the look of the vehicle, the hybrid model will have many features that the standard Optima lacks. For starters, the front of the car will get a new front grille with a completely new design, as well as a new front lower bumper and new headlamps. There will also be new fog lamps, heated outside mirrors, chrome accents on the exterior door handles, and side sills. The back of the car will see a new rear lower bumper, LED tail lamp design, and a rear lip spoiler. The wheels will be a 16-inch alloy wheel design. Customers will also have the option for a Premium Technology Package that will add extra features to their model.

Press release after the jump.

Nissan wanted to be unique; and they did it with the new Murano CrossCabriolet; the world’s only crossover convertible revealed today at Los Angeles Show. Nissan Murano Nissan Murano CrossCabriolet is only available in one version: 3,5 liter V6 AWD priced at $46,390. The only available options include: Carmel interior $500, Cashmere & brown top interior $500 and splash quads $125.

In order to transform a crossover into a convertible model Nissan added new front doors (7.9 inches longer than 4-door Murano front doors) and has eliminated the B-pillars. The cloth convertible top includes a rear glass skylight, helping create a wide-open interior environment even with the top in the closed position.

The difference between this and a standard Murano is also given by High Intensity Discharge (HID) bi-functional xenon projector headlights with auto on/off function, front fog lights and Nissan 370Z-inspired LED taillights, body-colored front and rear bumpers, chrome door handles, body-colored dual power/heated outside mirrors, and rear window defroster with timer.

The Murano CrossCabriolet is powered by a 3.5-liter 24-valve DOHC V6 producing 265 HP and 248 lb-ft of torque. The engine is mated to a standard second-generation Xtronic CVT™ with Adaptive Shift Control (ASC). It comes equipped with 4-wheel vented disc brakes with Anti-lock Brake System (ABS), Brake Assist (BA) and Electronic Brake force Distribution (EBD) and G-sensor.

Press release after the jump.

Volvo has entered the Los Angeles Design Challenge with the Air Motion design concept, except it’s only a scale model that will probably never see the light of production’s day. We’d give Volvo a hard time, but Maybach seemed to only bring sketches of their eRikscha so we’ll let Volvo slide.

The Volvo Air Motion’s shape is designed like a clamshell made out of ultra light carbon fiber. The goal for this vehicle is minimizing weight and complexity, while maximizing driving enjoyment. Fit under the inner workings of the car are compressed air motors that replace a heavy internal combustion engine and cool down under load instead of heating up. The lack of need for a heavy cooling system adds to the lightness of this concept, as do modifications to the chassis, interior, and suspension.

The Volvo Air Motion concept is powered by air turbines that float 1,000ft in the air and harness the power of the wind to convert it to electricity. This electricity provides the compression.

All in all, however, this is just another beautiful and unique concept that will never see the light of day. We hope all of the automakers that have presented the unique concepts have very deep filing cabinets that will keep these concepts safe until they are ready to flow on our streets.

Press release after the jump.

Jaguar celebrated 75 years of history with the unveiling of the C-X75 concept at the Paris Auto Show. Besides being a range-extended electric two-seated supercar, the C-X75 previews the company’s future design language, and we are really hoping that it is a preview version of the Jaguar’s long rumored supercar.

"The aim was to produce not only the most innovative but also one of the most beautiful Jaguars ever; one which hints at an exciting evolution of the marque’s award-winning design language while paying homage to some of its most admired cars of years gone by."

The new car tips the scales at around 2,970-pounds and is able to hit 62 miles per hour in just 3.4 seconds. That seems awfully fast for a vehicle with only two 96-horsepower micro gas turbines that force fuel into a plug-in li-ion battery back. Once all that is said on done, there are four electric motors, one for each wheel, that together deliver an outstanding 580kW (778bhp) and 1600Nm (1180lb ft) of torque. Stomp the pedal to the floor and you can hit 205 miles per hour.

The C-X75 can travel up to 68 miles on its battery pack alone, but once the turbines kick in the car can continue traveling for 560 miles. Chevrolet Volt , eat your heart out.

Updated 11/17/2010: The Jaguar C-X75 concept made its North American debut at the Los Angeles Auto Show and what better way to mark this occasion than to have Jay Leno review it? Watch the video and see what he has to say about the concept.

Hit the jump to see the full story, the press release - which is rather long - and the video.

The final customized 2012 Ford Focus revealed at the Los Angeles Auto Show shows the work of a tuning company that is definitely no stranger to the hatchback in question. FS Werks (formerly FocusSport) has been providing high performance street and race products for the Ford Focus since 1999 when they first opened. If anyone should produce a fine tuning package for the Focus, it should be them. and you can be the judge.

FSWerks started off their package by adding a 3dCarbon roof wing and 19-inch DPE R16 wheels wrapped in Continental ExtremeContact DW tires to the little hatchback. After that it was on to an FSWerks stainless steel performance exhaust that provides maximum flow and horsepower, an FSWerks cold air intake, an engine cover, and a new front stress bar. The ride height was then lowered three inches with the use of an H&R Springs coil-over kit.

“What I find great about the new Focus is that it’s a sporty, compact Ford with the global design our customers want,” said Randy Robles, FSWerks vice president. “The previous Focus versions have been huge for us, so we’re excited to continue that tradition.”

Press release after the jump.

Ford continues its attack on the Los Angeles Auto Show with this next Ford Focus from 3dCarbon. It may not see even a glint of a power upgrade, but the styling and aerodynamic modifications do allow for a tremendous boost in the overall look of the car.

The very first thing we noticed on the car is the glossy black hood and the satiny film foil wrap covering the rest of the body. The windows are smoked-out with 3M window film and the 20-inch Series KM650-KMC wheels are painted in glossy black finish and wrapped in Falken tires – FK452. There are two red pinstripes accenting their way down the length of the roof and hood while the wheels also get a little red pinstripe action.

In addition to the styling benefits found on this Focus, the hatchback also gets a 3dCarbon roof wing, H&R Springs sport spring, and a FSWerks cat-back exhaust.

“This car builds on the already impressive styling of the new Focus with the unique touches we used, like the foil wrap and red accents,” said Ernie Bunnell, 3dCarbon vice president of sales and marketing. “The design of the Focus fits where the market is right now and the global appeal of this car is sure to be a hit with our customers.”

Press release after the jump.

Whoever believed that the new Ford Focus was just a boring sedan for everyday use was wrong. And Ford has proof of that statement in the form of the new Focus race car arriving today at the Los Angeles Auto Show . This new concept demonstrates the car’s potential in road and touring car championships with teams around the world, at least that is what Ford is saying. We don’t know if we buy that statement just yet.

The concept car is powered by a 2.0-liter Ford EcoBoost I-4 engine and features performance coil-over adjustable dampers, Ford Racing upgraded sway bars with adjustable end links, front brakes with 320-millimeter two-piece rotors, and race pads. The concept sits on Anthracite 18-inch wheels and Hoosier race tires.

The interior also got the racing treatment with an FIA Super 2000 regulations roll cage, Recaro racing seats, an AIM MXL Pista data system, and an AIM Smart Smart yCam. Added safety features include a Ford Racing fire suppression system and Ford Racing six-point safety harness.

We’re still not entirely convinced that the Focus race car will make Ford proud out on the track, but this is just a concept as of yet and should serve as a decent base for the production model. Ford is production will be ready by 2012, leaving them plenty of time to build on a good thing.

Press release after the jump.

Ford armed themselves with a host of Fiestas at the 2010 SEMA Auto Show, but the 2010 Los Angeles Auto Show will see a mass of Focus models enter their show floor. One of those models will be the Ford Focus by Ford Vehicle Personalization. This Focus is out to prove that it can be cool when given the right Ford custom accessories.

The new Focus by Ford Vehicle Personalization features a new white body kit with an expressive concept graphic on the side panels, Caribbean Blue accents on the belt moldings, headlamps, mirrors, wheels, and fog lamp bezels. Attracting more attention to the exterior is the Liquid silver paint applied to the roof spoiler, mirrors, headlamps, and fog lamps.

The interior uses a black and white theme featuring all-leather seats with accent stitching. The steering wheel continues the same color theme with white and black leather. The center stack was left with soft touch white paint while the aqua accent lighting bring s a little color to the interior.

"We created a theme of an all-white vehicle with bursts of Caribbean Blue accents running throughout, which lends itself to many of the current trends seen in fashion."

Press release after the jump.

When it comes about urban driving you’ll always have models like Smart ForTwo , Aston Martin Cygnet or Scion iQ. But the Smart is just too small for some people out there, the Cygnet is only available for those who already have a Rapide and the iQ is not available on the US market just yet. Not to mention, that except the Cygnet all of them are mostly focused on fuel economy and not on luxury.

So today at the Los Angeles Auto Show Cadillac brought a concept car that promises to do both. It is called Urban Luxury Concept, and it even has a pair of scissor-type doors. The concept has compact dimensions: wheelbase of 97.1 inches (2,467 mm), overall length is only 151 inches (3,835 mm) and the height is 56.9-inch (1,446 mm); numbers that make it perfect for any town in the world. And if you didn’t guessed by now, the Urban Luxury features a hybrid drive train: a turbocharged 1.0 liter three-cylinder engine employing electric assist technology, engine start-stop function, brake energy regeneration and a dry dual-clutch transmission.

UPDATE 11/22/2010:

Cadillac’s stunning Urban Luxury Concept is already catching some buzz in some circles for its aggressive design and innovative content. The American city car is still a concept so we still can’t get too excited over it. That being said, Cadillac has released a new walk-around video of the Urban Luxury Concept, complete with a detailed look at what the interior of the ULC looks like. Check it out!

Press release after the jump.

Toyota will unveil the 2011 Corolla at the Los Angeles Auto Show. This new model gets new front and rear exterior styling, new interior design changes, Toyota Care complimentary maintenance plan, standard Smart Stop Technology, and two new colors. The 2011 Corolla will go on sale in December.

For the exterior Toyota has added a redesigned front bumper, radiator grille, front lower grille, headlamps, trunk lid, rear license garnish, rear combination lamp, rear bumper, and reflex reflector. The S model gets a new front spoiler, rocker moldings, and upper and lower rear spoilers. The interior gets a new instrument panel, a newly designed steering wheel and new seat color and pattern.

For 2011 the model is offered in three trim versions: Corolla, LE, and S, all powered by a 1.8-liter DOHC four-cylinder engine, which produces 132 hp at 6,000 rpm and 128 lb-ft of torque at 4,400 rpm. The engine can be coupled to either a five-speed manual transmission or a four-speed automatic Electronically Controlled Transmission (ECT).

Press release after the jump.


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