It was all about big and bold vehicles at the Detroit auto show this year, and they didn’t come much bigger and bolder than the Audi Q8 concept. The concept hints at a production vehicle of the same name coming in 2018 and features a larger footprint than the related Q7, a fastback roof and a plug-in hybrid system delivering 442 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. Audi also had on its stand the redesigned SQ5 and A5 Cabriolet.
The 2018 Kia Stinger proves that rear-wheel-drive sports sedans can still pull a crowd. The new Kia mid-sizer was one of the most popular attractions in Detroit and we can’t wait to hop behind the wheel. The looks have left some undecided but there should be no doubting the mechancials as they were honed by a former BMW M engineering boss.
VLF showed off a new vehicle in Detroit. The latest creation is a tough-as-nails off-roader based on the Chevrolet Colorado and channeling the Hummer H2. VLF also used to the show to confirm that the Ford Motor Company Mustang-based Rocket is now part of its lineup.
No, Ford didn’t show off a pink F-150 in Detroit. The vehicle was actually white but the lighting Ford chose for its stand probably wasn’t the best idea. Ford has updated the F-150 for the 2018 model year. Among the updates are some visual tweaks and the addition of V-6 diesel.
Another updated vehicle in Detroit was the Mercedes-AMG GT. The update sees the GT and GT S receive some visual tweaks and more power and the lineup expanded with the addition of the GT C. The enclosed version of the GT C Roadster we saw at the 2016 Paris auto show, the GT C, with its 550 hp, bridges the gap between the GT S and all-out-extreme GT R.
Another Mercedes-Benz auto show on the first circuit re-designed the 2018 e-Class Coupé. The car goes on sale later this year, bringing gorgeous lines and interior design and craftsmanship close to Bentley and Rolls-Royce. The launch will be Race Walk and Race Walk 4 Electric Auto Mode models, powered by a twin-turbo 3.0-liter V6 engine that gives 329 hp and 354 lb-ft.
Lexus stunned us with the reveal of its redesigned 2018 LS. The photos don’t capture the proportions and fine details of the latest Lexus flagship, especially the complex spindle grille. The car launches in LS 500 trim, and this time a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V-6 producing 415 hp and 442 lb-ft is nestled under the hood. Lexus, like most automakers, is moving away from V-8s for all but its performance-oriented offerings.
Another handsome vehicle was Infiniti’s new QX50 concept. Yes, it’s Infiniti’s third concept previewing the next-generation QX50, but this time the automaker has added some upcoming technologies to the vehicle such as the VC-Turbo variable compression engine and ProPilot driver assist feature. In Detroit, we learned that Infiniti had planned to use Mercedes’ MFA2 front-wheel-drive platform for the QX50 but incompatibility with the VC-Turbo engine has caused a rethink. Hopefully the vehicle doesn’t end up being delayed.
Nissan’s Vmotion 2.0 concept represents the latest evolution of the Japanese automaker’s V-Motion design language which is characterized by a powerful V-shaped motif for the grille, blade-like headlights and angular surfacing. The concept also previews one model in particular, the next-generation Altima.
Chinese state-owned automaker GAC is eager to secure a foothold in the new auto market in the United States. It hopes to start selling cars in 2018, one of which may be the Trumpchi GS7 released in Detroit. The small SUV is similar in size to the BMW X3 and features a wide range of turbocharged 2.0-liter inline 4 and 6-speed automatic transmissions. Guangzhou Automobile in Detroit gives a compact electric hatchback and coupe-like SUV.