The 2018 Detroit Motor Show is less than a month away, and things are already starting to heat up. In addition to the New York and Geneva Auto Shows, the Detroit Motor Show is one of the biggest automotive gatherings of the entire year. More to the point, it practically opens the entire year and sets the tone for the rest of the shows to follow. Set at the very beginning of January, it showcases the latest and greatest manufacturers and what they are planning on producing in the subsequent months.
Although this year’s show had a lot to offer, the 2018 edition promises to be even greater. Tons of manufacturers are planning on launching new and innovative products, though some are more significant than others. To help you keep an eye on the latest stuff, I’ve decided to showcase what you can expect to see if you’re planning on visiting it. For everyone else who’s not going, we’ll have a subsequent post-show write up of what actually unfolded. For the moment, get excited with these teasers.
Acura will bring an RDX prototype, showcasing the next-gen RDX which is set to debut later in 2018 or early 2019. Being an all-new generation, it takes inspiration from the Precision Concept and is, for lack of a better word, striking. It looks futuristic and modern. If Acura can make the production version even remotely close to its concept sibling, they’ll have a best-seller on their hands.
Another year, another BMW SUV. In addition to the already announced BMW X7, they’ll unveil their brand-new X2, a small crossover slotting nicely between the X1 and the X3. It’s predominantly aimed at young people, though I’m sure the price tag will suggest otherwise. It will come with the usual gasoline and diesel four-cylinders to begin with, though there’s a possibility of a hybrid later on in the future. An M variant is not out of the question too.
Chinese manufacturer GAC is slowly but surely breaching into European and American markets as well. They plan to unveil a plethora of new cars at the Detroit Motor Show, a sedan, and MPV and an EV, to be more precise. The EV will be just a concept, but we’ve finally reached that point where even Chinese manufacturers are starting to develop electric cars. If this doesn’t signal the beginning of the end for the internal-combustion engine (ICE), I don’t know what does.
The Insight has grown in size and is now back for the U.S. market. Although it’s a hybrid, Honda promises it won’t be riddled with the usual compromises which trouble most hybrids. I’m not really excited by the prospect of another average-looking Honda hybrid, but knowing the market and Honda themselves, I’ll be shocked if it’s anything less than a financial winner for them.
After the remarkable and truly great i30N, Honda has announced the Mk2 (second generation) of its Veloster. Although it didn’t prove to be a huge success in Europe like Hyundai thought it would, they hope the new car will change all of that. The headlines look promising as well. A more aggressive design, a better cabin, and even more power. Expect the usual 1.4 and 1.6-liter four-cylinder turbocharged units to make an appearance, as well as their brilliant seven-speed DCT. A six-speed manual should be the standard though, and honestly, I wouldn’t even bother with a DCT given that it’s a hot hatchback.
Infiniti will be making the switch over to electricity in the near future as well. Their latest EV concept is a clear indicator of that. This sleek and elegant four-door coupe potentially houses an all-electric powertrain and is the first car to be overseen by Infiniti’s new design boss, Karim Habib. He was formerly one of the major driving forces behind BMW’s design, so he knows a thing or two about making cars look good. It’s actually one of the cars I’m most looking forward to at the Detroit Motor Show.
I’ll be honest, I don’t really like the way the current Cherokee looks. I know it’s more modern but in my opinion, it’s lost some of the edge and character of the last generation. A new facelift set to debut at the Detroit Motor Show will hopefully resurrect that issue, however. Jeep states that the new design will be a lot cleaner and more simple. They’ll ditch the weird split headlights for single units, as well as get rid of the awkward grille.
Lexus will be bringing their LF-1 Limitless Concept. I’ve covered this in greater detail, and if you’re interested to find out more you can read about it here. Here’s the short and simple version though. It’s a new Lexus SUV concept, which will either become the redesigned RX or a completely different Range Rover rival. I think the teaser images look really promising too, as it’s got an edge to it that most other modern SUVs just don’t.
In addition to the usual AMG variants, Mercedes will showcase their new 53 moniker range. The first cars to get the nameplate are the CLS and the E-Class Coupe and Cabriolet respectively. All of them get a 3.0-liter straight-six as well as an electric motor, making them hybrids. The engine alone makes 429 horsepower, with the electric motor adding another 67 hp on top. Add them together and you get almost 500 horsepower. Or, in other words, serious firepower.
They’ll also unveil the ‘redesigned’ G-Class. Well, when I say redesigned, I mean relatively redesigned of course. The G-Class hasn’t changed much since its inception, and Mercedes constantly keeps upgrading the interior and the powertrain. In all honesty, it doesn’t matter what they do with it, because rich people can never get enough of its quirky design and aura. I like it as an off-roader because it’s capable, but I’d never own one.
Take a look at the brand-new Jetta. I know, it’s really gorgeous, isn’t it? It takes inspiration from the Passat and the all-new Arteon, though I think it looks better than both of them. A Jetta with a design to leave you speechless. I thought this day would never come.