2014 Chicago Auto Show Preview

Preparations are underway for the 2014 Chicago Auto Show, one of the largest auto shows in the U.S., as automakers fill the McCormick Place complex with their latest cars, trucks and SUVs. There seems to be a slight problem, however: NAIAS stole the show last month.

The crop of new vehicles set to be debuted is rather thin for Chicago. We know of a mere handful compared to the new releases that happened at Detroit. Show goers can take heart though as the healthy smorgasbord of vehicles from NAIAS will be paying a visit to the Windy City as well.

Among the reappearing are the Corvette Z06, BMW M3 sedan and M4 Coupe, Cadillac ATS coupe, Chrysler 200, Ford F-150, Ford Mustang, Hyundai Genesis, Lexus RC F, and Toyota’s FT-1 Concept.

What’s more, the lack of new competition might play well for the automakers bringing all-new products to Chicago as the media’s coverage will likely be focused them.

Click past the jump for the 2014 Chicago Auto Show Preview


BMW 740Ld xDrive

2014 BMW 750Ld xDrive High Resolution Exterior
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BMW has announced the addition of a U.S.-bound diesel option in their range-topping 7 Series for 2014. Only offered in the extended wheelbase version, the diesel powerplant will be the company’s familiar 3.0-liter TwinPower inline six production 255 horsepower at 4,000 rpm and 413 pound-feet of torque between 1,500 and 3,000 rpm. That power flows to all four wheels with BMW’s xDrive all-wheel-drive setup coming standard.

BMW says fuel economy will rise some 25 to 30 percent over the gasoline-powered 7 Series cars. Just doing the math ourselves, that puts the 740Ld xDrive achieving 24 mpg city and 36 mpg highway.

The 3.0-liter diesel has an exhaust gas treatment system that complies with ULEV II standards by using a combination of a Nox Storage Catalyst, particulate filter, and the Selective Catalytic Reduction system.

Pricing as already been announced at $82,500 plus a $925 destination fee. The cost represents a $1,500 jump over the gasoline-powered 740Li xDrive sedan. The new 7 Series diesel is expected to go on sale this spring.

Subaru Legacy Sedan

2015 - 2017 Subaru Legacy High Resolution Exterior
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Since Subaru pulled the covers off the Legacy concept car at the LA Auto show, we’ve been anxious to see the real life production version. Time grows nearer as Subaru teases us once again with the shot above.

Not much is known about the car at this point, but the obvious Subaru fare of standard all-wheel-drive and boxer-type engine are expected to underpin the Legacy. The sharp-looking Legacy concept showed off some really amazing design features we home make it into production. The Buick Regal GS-like front lower fascia and piercing headlights up front, plus the futuristic taillights and integrated exhaust outlets are four designs we hope make the cut.

The new design also helps the Legacy nameplate celebrate its 25th anniversary.

New Hyundai Veloster model

2014 Hyundai Veloster Turbo R-Spec High Resolution Exterior
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Hyundai’s quirky little Veloster is set to get “a new addition” to its lineup at the Chicago Auto Show. Nothing is known past that, but the company mentioned the reveal nonchalantly through a press release about social media coverage of the show.

We don’t suspect Hyundai will unveil anything utterly ground-breaking, but will likely bring an up-optioned trim level or performance mod to the already-exiting Veloster. Remember the Veloter Turbo R-Spec Hyundai brought to the LA Auto Show?


2015 Lincoln Navigator

2015 Lincoln Navigator High Resolution Exterior
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The 2015 Navigator will be one of the bigger debuts at Chicago. Lincoln’s revised flagship SUV has dropped the V-8 of old, added Ford’s V-6, updated the exterior styling, revised the interior accoutrements and updated the infotainment system to reflect the current decade.

That new-to-Navigator engine is Ford’s familiar 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6 and will produce at least 370 horsepower and 430 pound-feet of torque, according to Lincoln. Towing numbers are also impressive at 9,000 pounds — besting the across-town rival Cadillac Escalade’s 8,200 pounds.

Both the standard and long wheelbase versions will be offered. And despite wishful thinking, its unlikely the Navigator will benefit from Ford’s current aluminum experiment with the F-150.

Dodge Journey Crossroads

2014 Chicago Auto Show Preview High Resolution Exterior
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The aging Dodge Journey is set to get a new trim level to boost its already surprising sales. The new Crossroads edition is primarily an appearance package that pushes the car/crossover closer towards an SUV look-alike.

The new trim level is slotted between the SXT and Limited models and will come with either the 2.4-liter four cylinder in front wheel drive or the 3.6-liter V-6 and all-wheel-drive. Blacked out rims, a chrome roof rack, and a chrome bumper insert give the Journey a touch more masculinity.

Inside, new leather seating surfaces hold passengers in place while Chrysler’s large, 8.4-inch Uconnect infotainment system keeps them busy. Pricing will start at $24,995 for the four banger in FWD form and head north from there.


Toyota TRD Pro Lineup


Toyota hasn’t said much about its upcoming TRD Pro lineup beyond the one picture and video posted on its Facebook and YouTube pages. (Video Above) A careful examination of the video reveals Toyota’s Tundra, Tacoma, and 4Runner kicking up dust through the desert as onlookers gawk.

Blacked out wheels and heavily embossed "TOYOTA" grilles make the first impression of what’s to come with these three body-on-frame trucks. With Ford’s Raptor being up to pasture after the 2014 model year, Toyota might be looking for domination in the off-road racing world.

We suspect the majority of any upgrades will include stronger suspension parts, beefier wheels and tires, and extra underbody skid plating. Toyota has a reputation for making great off-roaders with its TRD packages, and we hope the Pro lineup will extend that reputation even further.

Super Preview: Reports give a glimpse at what the 2015 Chicago Auto Show will hold!

2016 Mazda MX-5

2014 Mazda MX-5 Miata Club - Driven High Resolution Exterior
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We’ve yet to see a leaked image of it, but the guys over at AutoCar had a nice chat with a Mazda insider about the new MX-5 Miata. From that conversation, we know the new car will be longer, much lighter, and employ a variant of the new ‘Kodo’ design language used on the Mazda 3 and 6 sedans. “Kodo can express our range in different ways,” said Design chief Ikuo Maeda in a previous interview with AutoCar. “My intent is to make it tighter looking visually, but still to have a strong presence.”

We also know the new MX-5 will be powered by the 1.5-liter and 2.0-liter inline four cylinder SkyActiv engines, depending on trim level. Both the soft top and folding hard top will return. It’s said Mazda wasn’t able to reach their goal of a 2,200-pound car, but the new MX-5 overstretches that goal by a mere 200 pounds.

The worst part is the waiting – and we’ve got a whole year to ponder the possibilities…

What do you think?
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