Detroit Auto Show 2018 Summary
Below are highlights from the 2018 North American Auto show aka Detroit Auto Show
- Few concepts, but they turned heads
There were darn few pure concept vehicles at the 2018 Detroit auto show, but the ones that did appear were true conversations starters.
- FCA lavishes tech, safety gear on 2019 Ram pickup
The long list of engineering, safety, performance and functional improvements — a bigger and quieter cabin, a stronger frame, more storage and improved fuel efficiency — in the next Ram half-ton truck signal that FCA is determined to challenge Chevrolet and Ford like never before.
- Mercedes plans more SUVs
Mercedes will respond to growing demand for SUVs by expanding its lineup with more models, most likely in the fast-growing compact segment.
- 2019 Silverado may emerge as efficiency leader
Industry-first engine technology, significant weight savings and a new inline-six diesel offering are among the enhancements GM is counting on to bolster the Chevrolet Silverado’s position as the second-best-selling vehicle in America.
- 2019 Ram 1500 gets big screen, reclining seats
The redesigned 2019 Ram 1500 pickup — wholly changed and sporting sophisticated technology once reserved for luxury sedans — is the result of that all-in commitment to the automaker’s top-selling vehicle.
- Jeep sees banner year with new products, Manley says
While other mainstream auto brands head for sliding United States demand this year, Jeep is rolling out new models to buck the trend and bring 16 straight months of sales declines to an end.
- Jeep Cherokee gets new engine, nip and tuck for 2019
Jeep’s midsize SUV, the Cherokee, gets a new turbocharged 2.0-liter inline-four engine, a new face and a number of fixes as part of an extensive freshening for the 2019 model year.
- BMW’s sporty X2 fills key gap in utility lineup
BMW’s new X2 crossover will fill a key gap in the automaker’s utility lineup that accounts for a third of its worldwide sales.
- Waymo chief pops up at Detroit show with Chrysler Pacifica tester
Even though self-driving-car company and Google spinoff Waymo didn’t make any news in Detroit this week, CEO John Krafcik showed up at Cobo Center in a self-driving Chrysler Pacifica.
- VW brand will invest $3.3 billion in quest for U.S. relevance
VW will invest more than $3.3 billion in North America to give a boost to its core brand as the automaker seeks to build the marque’s U.S. market share in the wake of its emissions-cheating scandal.
- A little Japanese flair for the next Nissan Rogue?
Nissan’s new design chief, Alfonso Albaisa, is really into Japanese design these days — and the next Rogue crossover might show the results.
- Acura reboots RDX ‘from ground up’
The third-generation RDX — the first RDX styled, developed and engineered entirely in the U.S. — is the crossover’s most extensive redesign in more than a decade, and it will square off against a wave of new rivals.
- Ford Mustang Bullitt GT will pack a 475-hp punch
Ford confirmed plans to resurrect the high-performance, special-edition pony car from the 1968 Steve McQueen film Bullitt.
- Ferrari plans electric supercar as lineup expands
Ferrari will make a battery-powered supercar to challenge Tesla Inc. at the high end of the electric-auto market, CEO Sergio Marchionne said.
- Ford to hatch most powerful street-legal Mustang under Shelby badge
Ford next year will launch its most powerful street-legal Mustang ever: a 700+ hp Shelby GT500.
- Infiniti concept signals roomier cabins
The Infiniti Q Inspiration foreshadows the next Q70 with a smaller engine compartment and a more luxurious cabin
- Kia Forte gains fuel efficiency, polish for 2019
Design cues from Kia’s Stinger sport sedan have made their way to the third-generation Kia Forte sedan and the compact car is receiving an engineering overhaul that improves fuel economy and powertrain refinement.
- Overhauled G class stays inside the box
The 2019 G class is bigger, lighter and more luxurious, and with the most thorough redesign in the venerable SUV’s history, Mercedes-Benz will discover whether a modernized chassis and technology-laden interior can push demand even higher.
- Toyota polishes 5th-generation Avalon, introduces Apple CarPlay
Toyota’s next-generation Avalon flagship sedan features more aggressive bodywork, an updated platform to improve driving dynamics and the company’s first implementation of Apple CarPlay after years of remaining one of the few holdouts on smartphone integration.
- Hyundai Veloster gets more muscular
Hyundai is reviving its Veloster hatchback for the 2019 model year with a new platform and the brand’s first-ever N performance model for the U.S. market, along with a more muscular design akin to a sport coupe.
- Lexus LF-1 stresses style over utility
Lexus’ new crossover concept defines a fresh segment for the luxury automaker: a light truck focused more on style and driving dynamics than utility. The LF-1 Limitless is described as a flagship crossover and the spiritual brother of the new-generation LS flagship sedan.
- New Mercedes AMG 53 line debuts with electrified inline six-cylinder
Three new AMG 53 models, powered by an electrified inline six-cylinder engine, will be on sale in the U.S. by late 2018.
- VW’s 2019 Jetta gets bigger on new platform
VW’s redesigned 2019 Jetta sedan, the brand’s top seller in the U.S., will be larger with improved driving dynamics while receiving an injection of safety and infotainment technology as it moves to the company’s global MQB platform. The base price has been cut by $100.
- Honda Accord, Lincoln Navigator and Volvo XC60 win North American car, truck, utility awards
The Honda Accord won the 2018 North American Car of the Year at the Detroit auto show, while the Lincoln Navigator took the truck honors and the Volvo XC60 was named top utility vehicle of the year.
- Lightweight materials r&d facility in Detroit showcased during auto show
A $50 million r&d operation for testing and commercializing lightweight metals and composite materials is being showcased in Detroit during this week’s auto show.
- Transportation chief says new U.S. guidelines for autonomous vehicle oversight are coming
Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said the federal government will introduce new federal guidelines in an effort to modernize regulations to fit an autonomous future.
- At the Gallery, supercars and ultraluxe wheels on parade
The invite-only Gallery event on Saturday helped kicked off the 2018 Detroit auto show at Cobo Center, with vehicles on display worth a combined $10 million.