2018 Detroit Auto Show – Best In Show
The best and the brightest to drop in Motownby Jonathan Lopez, on
With the arrival of the new year comes all kinds of fresh opportunities. While some folks decide to learn a new language, or maybe start hitting the gym a little more, or possibly get the hell off Facebook, the turning of the calendar is a great time for new beginnings. The same is true for the auto industry, with a variety of new entries for the 2019 model year making their way onto our radar. The latest and the greatest just made their appearance in Michigan and the North American International Auto Show, or, as it’s more popularly known, the Detroit Auto Show. TopSpeed was on the scene to capture all the good stuff, and we’ve got it all compiled right here for your perusal and enjoyment.
Included is a fresh hot hatch import, a domestic speed machine, a bad ass new truck, and a few slick concepts as well. Per usual, we wanna know your picks for the best and brightest from Detroit, so go ahead and post those opinions in the comments section below!
Continue reading to learn more about our picks for Best In Show from the 2018 Detroit Auto Show.
We’re suckers for a sweet hot hatchback, so we just had to include the new go-faster Veloster on this list. This latest from the South Korean brand is the first N model destined for stateside consumers, which, if you’re unaware, means its the first U.S. model tuned by Hyundai’s in-house performance division. Stuffed into the front end is a turbo 2.0-liter four-cylinder making 275 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque, all of which reaches the front wheels by way of a close-ratio six-speed transmission. There’s also an electronic front differential, a fully independent sport-oriented adjustable suspension system, and multiple drive modes to make the most of it. It’s also got standard 18-inch wheels and available 19’s, plus big brakes too. Not only that, but we think it looks great, offering an aggressive three-door aesthetic that’s sure to turn a few heads. And with a price tag somewhere around $25,000 to $30,000, it’ll even look good on your bank account, too.
Read our full review of the 2019 Hyundai Veloster N.
From small and quick, to big and powerful, we have the next entry on our list of the best from Detroit – the new-and-improved Ram 1500. The latest update brings the popular workhorse into the modern day with a host of new technology, while still keeping all the traditional values intact. Outside, you’ll find tweaked exterior styling that looks fresh yet classic, with a wide demeanor and slimmer headlights. It’s smarter too, with an active air dam that helps the front end cut down on aero drag, helping out with the overall efficiency in the process. Step up into the cabin, and you’ll find a newly upgraded interior that’s now more comfortable thanks to extra space in the crew cab model, as well as a large 12-inch touchscreen on the dash. Under the skin is a new frame that’s 100 pounds lighter than before, with 225 pounds cut from the curb weight overall. A new suspension as well as optional air components manage the heft, and a fresh 4x4 off-roading package is offered on each of the individual trim levels. There’s even a mild hybrid system for the various V-6 and V-8 engine options.
Read our full review of the 2019 Ram 1500.
Well of course we had to include at least one muscle car, right? After all, this is Detroit...
Our pick for best American Iron at the 2018 Detroit Auto Show is the Blue Oval’s latest homage to the 1968 Steve McQueen classic Bullitt, a film that gave the world one of the most memorable car chases to ever hit the silver screen. At almost 11 minutes in the length, the sequence portrays a high-speed battle between a green Ford Mustang and a black Dodge Charger, with the heroes and villains going at it on the streets of San Francisco with plenty of tire-squealing goodness and high-flying stunts.
All told, we think the 2019 Bullitt looks awesome, arriving in Motown draped in a stellar shade of Dark Highland Green and sporting fully debadged body panels for an exceptionally sleek look. It’s also got classic 19-inch “torque thrust” wheels and oodles of complementary black trim, plus a wingless rear end to top off that perfectly McQueen-esque laconic style. Inside, the Bullitt’s interior is a nice fusion of new and old, with retro cues mingling with modern tech like a 12-inch LCD infotainment screen. And of course, this machine has loads of performance to back the aesthetic, rocking a 5.0-liter V-8 under the hood making “at least” 475 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque, which is good enough for a top speed of 163 mph.
Read our full review of the 2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt.
Following a series of teasers and close-cropped preview images, Infiniti dropped cover on its latest design study in Detroit this year. Dubbed the Q Inspiration, it looks to preview a possible forthcoming Q90 flagship sedan from Nissan’s luxury brand, and we think it looks great, with velvety, sultry lines that blend into a shape that’s both sporty and refined. The hoodline is long, while the cab is set back in the profile, giving it those classic GT proportions we all know and love. The headlights are thin, carved into the front fenders and drawn back from a large, squarish front intake. The wheels are funky and big, while the interior is equally gorgeous, coming proper with a two-tone color scheme and a modern design approach for the layout and seats. No word on what’s providing the motivation, but we’re thinking electric power would make a whole lotta sense. Either way, if this is the direction Infiniti is heading, we say full steam ahead.
Read our full review of the 2018 Infiniti Q Inspiration Concept.
Our final entry on this list is another import concept, this time around from the luxury brains at Lexus. Believe it or not, its an SUV body style that’s bringing the goods, and as our man Ciprian Florea points out, “Gorgeous design. I can’t believe I’m actually nominating a crossover.”
We hear ya, Ciprian, but this thing is definitely worthy of the honor. The exterior is big and bold like a proper SUV should be, but at the same time, it manages to bring some nice, sharp design elements that lend it a futuristic high-tech vibe perfectly in tune with the times. Hell, it even manages to make that enormous spindle grille in the nose look at home. The story continues inside, where we find a handsome layout that combines dark gray, white, brown, and copper colors in just the right quantities, plus well-positioned infotainment screens and glittering panels for the door inserts and center console. It’s also bringing a few cool tech ideas to the party, such as a chauffeur mode and four-dimension navigation.
Read our full review of the 2018 Lexus LF-1 Limitless Concept.
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