Autoblog Editor's Choice
2017 Detroit Show, we hardly knew ye. While public days for the show run for two weeks, this year's press preview was a single day of reveals. That doesn't mean the show was light - as you can see from our mega-gallery post there are plenty of new cars at Cobo hall this year.
As is tradition, we've polled the staff and tallied up the points to bring you our favorites from this year. One spoiler: our list is light on family cars. The Toyota Camry and Chevrolet Traverse didn't excite us enough the make the cut.
Click though for the countdown of cars we like best this year.
5th place: NIssan Vmotion 2.0 Concept
SEBASTIAN BLANCO: Let's hear it for the crazy concept cars (I'd have voted for the Chrysler Portal here if FCA hadn't decided to show it off at CES last week instead). While Nissan didn't say this one's electric, there are no obvious exhaust pipes there, so we'll just assume this thing plays on both sides of Nissan's zero emissions/zero fatalities strategy.
MICHAEL AUSTIN: It's clean and aggressive, which makes it hard to believe this is an evolution of Nissan's current design style. The interior is a beauty as well, even if I'm not a fan of the airplane-style steering wheel.
4th place - Audi Q8 Concept
MICHAEL AUSTIN: The more I look at the Q8 the more I appreciate how Audi made this thing look sporty. Believe me, I know that sounds lame talking about a crossover, but this hugeness is wrapped in some badass sheetmetal. Plus the inside has the Virtual Dashboard from CES 2016 with a touchscreen that works like physical buttons.
ADAM MORATH: It’s hard to make a crossover exciting, but Audi brought an edginess to its coupe-like Q8 that helps this grocery getter stand out in a crowd. Outside of the sloping hood, it’s all sharp angles for the Q8. Its wide-set grille elements look ready to shred anything in their path, and the wheels are reminiscent of a Vitamix blender. Audi brings its trademark design refinement to the slanted headlights, and the Q8's tail lights have a retro-futurist louvered look.
SEBASTIAN BLANCO: If you bring a plug-in concept to an auto show, I'ma gonna let you get some points.
3rd place - 2018 Honda Odyssey
DAVID GLUCKMAN: It might not be sexy – okay, it's definitely not – but I'm all for any advancement in the minivan arena. I'm also glad the lightning bolt on the side has been carried over to the new generation. Plus I love reconfigurable seats.
ALEX KIERSTEIN: This is one Honda had to get right, and other than the trendy floating roof aspect that every automaker seems to be adopting, the new Odyssey did. Credit goes to the upgraded powertrain and the superb interior. Even the third row is ultra-comfy, and there’s a bevy of connected features to distract unruly kids. The Odyssey seems like the right balance of unintimidating tech and convenience features. It’s an even better argument against a three-row crossover.
JOEL STOCKSDALE: Visually, it didn't really excite me, but the new Odyssey has loads of thoughtful features that deserve mention. The rear cabin monitoring and communication system, phone controls for HVAC and stereo, sliding second row seats, and "How Much Farther App" are all great ideas, and go to show that vans are still the ultimate people carriers.
2nd Place - 2018 Kia Stinger GT
ALEX KIERSTEIN: Kia’s unusual and (to my eyes) overstyled Stinger GT grabs some points despite my pessimism that it’ll add up to something special. It’s sort of a Korean Dodge Charger, with a great engine and available rear-wheel drive. It beat the upcoming Genesis G70 out of the gate, which is something, but it’ll take some real magic to make it as rewarding to drive as what it’ll compete against.
JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: Some will say it's overstyled (Kierstein, I'm looking at you), and some will say it's boring. I say it's just about right, and I love the practicality of a performance-oriented hatchback with family-size proportions.
REESE COUNTS: Kias are no longer just a value buy and owners don't need to make excuses for their purchases. The Stinger GT shows that Kia is comfortable enough to try something more than just a mainstream, mass-market model.
1st Place - Volkswagen I.D. Buzz Concept
JEREMY KORZENIEWSKI: After seeing this concept and listening to VW talk about it, I have a bit more hope that VW will actually release a proper remake of its classic minivan. They should have introduced it 10 years ago, and it'll probably be another 5 before a new Microbus sees the light of day, and that's too long. Still. The I.D. is cool, it's electric, and it'd look great in my driveway.
ADAM MORATH: It’s hard to integrate retro notes into a futuristic-looking ride, but the Buzz EV does so better than any of the recent VW microbus concepts. If this mini bus were actually to hit the market, VW would have a truly unique and compelling product on its hands; one that would be beloved by both hipster millennials and their nostalgic empty-nester parents. Finally, something the whole family can agree on!
DAVID BURRICK: If you're going to come to an Auto Show, you want to see something cool that you've never seen before. And to me, this is far and away the most interesting thing to see this year. It's got an awesome retro look with tons of cool tech and features.
Surprise Honorable Mention
Honorable Mention - GAC Trumpchi GA3 EV
DAVID GLUCKMAN: There's a bonsai tree between the rear seats. And the cloth roof rolls back. And it's sort of a crossover. This thing has the Nissan Murano CrossCabriolet beat.
REESE COUNTS: China is either really close or really far from selling a vehicle in the US. It's hard to tell which. The GE3 appears to be a solid EV with decent range, and I think an electric vehicle has a better chance of making it over than anything else. Emissions and fuel economy standards are tough, but an EV gets around all of that. The biggest question will be the build quality.
SEBASTIAN BLANCO: This thing's got everything that makes an auto show worthwhile: a brand name that has to attract attention in the current political climate, the (far-fetched?) promise of a Chinese automaker selling cars in the US, and an electric powertrain. Thanks, GAC, and we'll see where you are next year.
via Autoblog http://www.autoblog.com January 12, 2017 at 03:19AM