Saturday, September 21, 2019

Cruising Instagram...








Today we have a bunch of things that never happened. And a few that did. Barely...



- A design study from the early '80s for a second-generation Dodge Omni/Plymouth Horizon.
Which never happened...

- A weird but cool 3 row Cadillac wagon.

- A very interesting "next-generation" AMC Gremlin wagon proposal from 1976.  

- Some fantastic looking concept car. (Any idea what that is???)

- An early 70's design for a second-generation Chevrolet Monte Carlo

- The always cool Pontiac Firebird Type K Concept car from 1978.

- An early, and quite futuristic, design idea for the Chevrolet Astro van.

Friday, September 20, 2019

2020 VW Viloran Minivan


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VW'snew Minivan for China looks like a Golf 8 on steroids.
The rear lights seem very similar. And the chrome bits upfront also resemble the next-generation Golf.
Otherwise, it looks like it is based on the Atlas SUV.
Since the interior looks almost the same.
(Look at these 1990s looking uninspired door panels...)

Of course, this is not coming over here. And it's not coming to Europe either. As this will be, so far, for the Chinese market only.
Where minivans still sell in pretty high numbers. Buick sold over 144 000 units of the GL8 minivan over there last year.
While the best selling minivan in the US, the Chrysler Pacifica, sold about 118 000.

Sales of minivans in the US are not what they used to be, but they are still good numbers. All above 100 000 a year, except for the old Sienna (which will be new next year)
Since it looks based on the Atlas, this Viloran cannot cost a fortune to build.
I wonder why VW doesn't try to sell this over here at all...

(another dumb move???)

Thursday, September 19, 2019

More pictures of the revised 2020 Buick Verano






This is a mid-cycle refresh for the current generation Verano sedan.\for the Chinese market.
The one that was never sold in the US (or outside of China as far as I know)
It is again, basically, an Opel Astra.
That new front end looks even more like an Opel than ever.

It is now powered by a small 1.3 Liter Turbo engine. So probably not that quick...

A really nice looking upscale compact sedan. That keeps selling very well in a country where sedans are still popular. And anything from Buick seems to be a big hit.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

2021 Genesis G80?




These do seem pretty realistic.
Even looking like screen grabs from a video.
But it could slo be some clever 3D work...

It looks very close to the various spy shots we have seen of the real car. Although the whole thing doesn't feel as soft or curvy as the spy shots. So who knows...


2020 Honda CR-V: Hybrid coming to the US!




 Mostly small changes outside for the 2020 Honda CR-V.
It looks like they toned down the chrome up front. Which is nice. (Black car is the current model)

Basically, except current owners, nobody will be able to tell the difference.


Same thing inside. Where it looks like the electronic shifter (hybrid) and redesigned center console bin are the only changes. 

The gigger news are under the hood.
Where the base model is now powered by the 1.5 Liter Turbo and a CVT. (Just like all other versions)


The big news for 2020 is the availablilty (early 2020) of the all new Hybrid version.
(which has been available for a while in Europe)
It uses a similar powertrain as the one in the wonderful Accord Hybrid (test drive HERE)

The Accord Hybrid is a great driving car. Rated at an amazing 48MPG. 
While I got an even better 50MPG average during the week I was driving it.

No figures has been released for the CR-V Hybrid, but I would think it could be pretty easy to get well over 40MPG on average.
Which would make it a compelling choice.

Honda Hyprid pricing is also quite amazing. As the Accord Hybrid is only about $1500 more than the regular 1.5 Liter model.
If priced similarly, this would mean a sub $27 000 starting price for the CR-V Hybrid.
Which is a bit less than the Hybrid RAV-4. 

The CR-V Hybrid will also be right on time to compete with the all new Ford Escape Hybrid.



Tuesday, September 17, 2019

2020/21 Toyota Yaris to be a Mazda 2 clone, again?




As mentioned earlier Toyota has decided to replace their original Yaris with a Mazda 2 hatchback clone in the US for 2020.
A weird move since the current Mazda 2 has been around for years.
The sedan version was even sold as a Scion years ago.

It looks like it will happen again with the next generation.
The car pictured above ( and almost uncovered HERE) looks a lot like a Mazda.
Which could mean that from the very begining, the new Yaris will in fact be a Mazda with a new nose.
The European plates on the prototype clearly show this is a solution chosen for other markets  as well.
(For now, the European Yaris is still the Toyota model, not a Mazda)

I guess why not. I remember many people lamenting the fact that Mazda had decided not to sell the current Mazda 2 in the US, years ago.
We finally got, as a Toyota.

This just means the next Mazda 2 is also coming over. Once again, as a Toyota...

2020/21 Genesis G80






These newer spy shots of the next generation Genesis G80 look really close to these illustrations I had posted a while ago.
The rear ends still seems a bit droopy...
Not sure how healthy the mid-sized RWD sedan market is, but the new Genesis doens't seem to bring anything new to the table. So far.
Unless there is a hatchback hidding in there?
Now we really see that all new huge Genesis grille. Same as the revised 2020 G90.
(Which means the new G70 will probably be revised soon to match the others)

Otherwise, these wide tires do look quite sporty I must say.

Even though the Lexus GS is going away (or is it gone yet).
And the Infiniti sedans are struggling, the new G80 will still have new competition from the new Cadillac CT-5.
With its very attractive $37 000. Which is about $10 000 less than the CTS it replaces.

So far, the current Genesis G80 starts at around $42 000.

On another note, the all new G80 is now scheduled for early 2020, instead of late this year.


2021 Nissan Quest?

Ever wondered what a new Nissan Quest could look like?

Well, here it is. An idea of a new generation Quest, using current Nissan design elements.
It doesn't look bad. Certainly as good or better as the current Honda Odyssey or Toyota Sienna.
But as far as we know, it won't happen. As Nissan has not mentioned any plans to re-enter the US Minivan market.

The Chrysler Pacifica is supposed to be getting some kind of an update soon.
Toyota has been testing prototypes of an all-new Sienna for a while now.
And I am sure Honda is already hard at work on a new Odyssey.

The closest thing to a new Quest will be the next generation Pathfinder.
Whenever that happens. The big Nissan SUV needs a redesign. Badly.
As it lags pretty much in every aspect compared to its newer competitors.
Since pretty much everything else is newer...

2020 DS9



Citroen's sub-luxury brand is coming soon with a large sedan.
Which looks a lot like the car it is based on, the Peugeot 508 sedan.

Which is a shame. "DS" needs something a bit more original than a rebadged Peugeot to stand out.
So far they have a weird looking compact car and a few borderline strange-looking, chrome-covered SUVs.
Since China is the main market for the new brand, I guess chrome is mandatory.

Strangely enough, the DS9 is also planned for Europe. After the initial Chinese launch.

The "regular" Citroen models are much more attractive and fun looking. 





Monday, September 16, 2019

Chrysler Atlantic coming up?


This does look quite interesting.

It would mean there will be a Chrysler version of the upcoming Jeep Wagoneer?
Why not. As the Escalade is just a Cadillac version of the Chevy Tahoe/Suburban, and allows GM to make a huge amount of money.
That would also mean Chrysler is not dead. Which is a good thing.

The front end pictured above would also look pretty nice on a new Chrysler 300.
Just saying...
I think Chrysler should "pull a 2020 Passat"' with the 300.
Keep most of it, but get it a new body and interior.

As they are still selling almost 50 000 of them a year.



(Thanks to a reader for these pix)

2021 BMW X4?








 Again, I do have to thank a reader for these spy shots from New York.

I was told it could be a revised BMW X4.
The X4 is very new, as it only came out last year in the US.
Of course, the prototype looks a lot like the X4 (Dark car in the official pix)
But since all BMW models look the same it's hard to tell what it is...



The interior shot is a dead give away.
As it is the same as the current 3 series (picture above) and not the X4 interior.
Which means this prototype could be a version of the upcoming 4 series. Or the return of the 3 Series Gran Turismo?

I had read somewhere that BMW was not coming up with another GT version of the redesigned 3 series. (or at least it wasn't coming to the US)

But it looks like the 3 Series GT will be reborn.
If not in the US, at least overseas...


Sunday, September 15, 2019

Mystery SUV (2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer?)

This was sent to me by a reader a little while ago.
The picture was taken in Las Vegas.

 Interesting to see the rather sharp angle where the top of the windshield meets the roof.
Which means it could really be the 2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer.



The top picture of the Trailblazer is a very close match from the spy shot above.
The bottom one is GM's official photo of the US version (The Trailblazer is also offered in China)

So far all we know is that it will fit in between the Trax and Equinox.
It is basiclaly the Chevy version of the new Buick Encore GX. So it will probably be powered by the same 3 cylinder engines. And it goes on sale early 2020.


Thanks to Dan for the Spy Shot!