22 World Debuts in LA Auto Show
The LA Auto Show is set to take place next month, between 9 to 21 November 2013 for the media and 22 November to 1 December 2013 for the public. The organiser has announced that visitors can expect to see 22 world debuts from automakers like Porsche, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Jaguar, Chevrolet, Ford, Honda, Toyota, Nissan, Hyundai, Land Rover, Mini and Subaru.
While most of the auto manufacturers have remained secretive about their debuts, a few have already confirmed details and released images of their much anticipated new models:
Porsche’s Macan Compact SUV
When Porsche released its first SUV in 2002, the Cayenne, fans cringed at the thought of the sportscar maker’s deviation from tradition. Still, it turned out to be a clever move as the SUV may well be the German carmaker’s saviour. The Cayenne became the best selling model for many years, hitting a high of 77 822 units in 2012 and accounting for half of Porsche’s total sales.
Following the success of their SUV model, Porsche will be unveiling another, albeit slightly smaller, compact SUV this November. The Porsche Macan will have a sportier appearance compared to the Cayenne. Porsche has already released a microsite to promote the Macan, although not much is said about the vehicle’s specifications. It will most likely be available with a four or six cylinder engine for petrol or diesel, and built on the same platform as the Audi Q5.
Porsche’s initial sales projection was 45 000 units. However, suppliers of the automaker were informed that the company intends to increase production to 75 000 units within the first year.
MINI Cooper’s Hardtop
The upcoming MINI Cooper will feature advanced driver assistance features that previously were only available in luxury cars. MINI is perhaps following in the footsteps of its parent company, BMW, which vehicles feature the ConnectedDrive services.
A new display located on the MINI Hardtop’s dashboard, directly in the driver’s line of vision, will display all sorts of information, including speed, navigation, entertainment and so forth. The display is configured to show a ‘virtual distance’ so that the driver’s eyes do not have to refocus when switching view between the road and the display. Pretty nifty.
The Hardtop will also feature an automated parking system: ultrasound sensors can locate parking spaces of a suitable size, and alert the driver as the vehicle passes by; with the press of a button, the system will calculate the parking line and then manuever itself into the space. The driver need not steer, but can continue to control the accelerator and brake pedals.
And then there are the collision and pedestrian warning features, which utilises a camera mounted on the windscreen. The system implements the brakes when it senses a risky situation; meanwhile, visual and audio warnings go off. If the system senses potential disaster, the brake circuits are pre-filled and the brake linings are applied to the disks, which allows the car to respond very quickly if the driver applies the emergency brakes.
Mercedes’ 2014 S65 AMG
Mercedes has only confirmed that they will be unveiling the 2014 version of their S65 AMG during the LA Auto Show, but no further details were revealed. Still, there have been sightings of the updated model on the road. Compared to its predecessor, a few exterior modifications were observed: more chrome on the front grille and bumper, and multi-spoke alloy wheels. The current model’s engine produces 621hp but the new model’s 6 liter twin-turbo V12 engine should easily be able to outpower that.
Besides the exciting debuts of shinier exteriors, the latest in automotive technology and more revelations of green vehicle options, perhaps visitors will be lucky enough to see another luxury vehicle smashed. During the Qingdao International Auto Show in May this year, a disgruntled customer had his Maserati smashed in protest of lousy customer service. During the recent Frankfurt Motor Show in September, a very unhappy Italian took an axe to his M6. So, will another luxury car get decimated in this upcoming LA Auto Show? One can only hope.