Monday, August 31, 2020

Next Nissan Z: another illustration

 

I have to say, I really like this one. I think this is the closest I have seen to the official teaser from Nissan.It also has a simplicity I like. This is a simple, no BS retro-modern design.

 So far, news about the new Z haven't been great lately. Apparently, it would only start production in late 2022. Use a modified version of the current platform. And will still be a V6. No electrification of any kind. Which sounds like a very old fashion set up for a 2023 model year "new" model.

Maybe that is the intention. Save money on what will surely be a slow seller by using the same platform. And appealing to people who still want that old fashion RWD V6.

Why not...

2022 Mercedes C_Class sedan: same old...

 

This is from a french site. And it still looks like an illustration. Although it could be really close to the real thing from previous spy shots we have seen.

Again, this will just look like a cross between the current C-Class (90%) and the E-Class (10%). So basically, a very invisible, and very expensive compact car. With so-so long term reliability...

2022 Kia Sportage


 On this new spy shot, we can see an interesting (or just plain weird) swoop line part of the rear door.

We have seen millions of spy photos of the upcoming Hyundai Tucson, looking quite stylish already. The Kia Sportage cousin used to be the more stylish, European looking one of the two. I am sure Kia will not let the Sportage go "boring" on us. It could end up looking quite modern after all. And... I still think the current generation looks really good...

Next Nissan Z: not next year...

Apparently, the cool teaser we saw a few months ago about all these new Nissan cars didn't mean an all-new Z was coming up soon. Now, it is not expected until late 2022. That's right, 2 years!

The current Z is basically a zombie car. And has been for a few years. I test drove it at least 3 times over the years. And really like it. But you can buy a used one in great shape for half the price of a new one, or less. And it looks exactly the same as a brand new one...
2022 (2023 model year) is a very long time to wait. Especially since they showed us a pretty clear preview of it months ago.
So weird...
It is also rumored to use an updated version of the same platform, with a regular V6. So basically, nothing really new. Which, in 2022 0r 2023, will feel very old tech. 

 

2021 Toyota 86: new illustrations

 


I know these do look close to the many spy shots we have seen so far. But let's hope they are all wrong. As they show a car that is just nothing special. Which is the opposite of what a cool sporty car should be.

It should be cool and special. This is just a modest and timid redo of the slow-selling current model. They can, and should, do better...

Sunday, August 30, 2020

Mystery SUV: what is this?

 


The sad part is: this could be almost anything, from anyone...

It has a modern SUV shape. Just like any other "modern SUV" these days.

It does look a bit like a Nissan, except for the front end...  What do you think it is?


1- Nissan Rogue Sport

2- New Mitsubishi model

3- New Honda HR-V

4- Next Chevrolet Trax

5- Just one of many new Chinese compact SUVs coming up.

Tesla Model Y: new wheels for China?

 

From this photo, it looks like the Chinese built Tesla Model Y will get a different wheel design than the ones made in the US. And maybe other small changes. 

The current wheel designs Tesla currently offers on most of their cars look like cheap hubcaps. Even on the t Model S. Which is really too bad, especially since these cars are expensive.

I also think they really need to offer more colors. On all their cars. And more color choices inside as well.

But I guess all that doesn't really matter since they sell all they can build. And really need to find ways to make a profit on these cars. So adding options and colors would just add cost...


Saturday, August 29, 2020

2021/22 Honda Civic Illustrations : Meh...



                                                         

This looks like it should have been a previous generation design. I still think the current model looks fine and more modern than this.

Let's hope Honda doesn't go back to some super conservative design like they have done before. They usually come up with a very modern design for one generation and walk back a few steps the next time...


What do you think? Would this be better than what we have now?


(Thanks to a reader for these)

Friday, August 28, 2020

2021 Peugeot 3008: a little better?

 


Peugeot is getting ready to modify its popular 3008 SUV/Crossover/Wagon for the new year.
Which might actually be an improvement.
During my travels in Europe a few years ago, I saw a few of these in person. All I can say is that design is quite a mess.
Gone is the classy feel of older Italian designed Peugeot sedans and wagons. The front end alone has enough lines for 3 cars. Overy aggressive and trying really hard to look bigger than it is, I guess. (it is only about the size of a Mazda CX-30) With way too much plasticky looking chrome trim.

The new front end, although still camouflaged, already looks a bit simpler. The current engine choice for the 3008 would work well for the US. Since it includes a 1.6 Liter with 180hp and a Toyota made 8 speed automatic.

It is interesting to see where Peugeot design is going since they are still claiming to re-enter the US market "soon". A couple of years ago "soon" meant 2026. Now it means 2023. 
Although Peugeot (PSA) and Fiat (FCA) are now a giant company, so that "soon' might even be sooner since they will now have access to the Chrysler network in the US.
So why not...


This 1959 403 Convertible is probably Peugeot's best-known car in the US...


My first sighting: delivery robot!





Many of you have probably seen this before. But this was the first time for me!

While I was shooting a driving video in Hollywood yesterday, I saw this little guy coming from the left, crossing the street. For some reason, my brain made me think it was a shopping cart (pushed by no one), then a wheelchair (with no one on it). Before I realized what it was.

Again, I had heard about these many times but had never seen one in person.



A very small event, but quite a big deal actually seeing one. Unimaginable just a few years ago...



Have you ever seen one? Or used one??

2022 Jeep Grand Wagonner: one big glass roof coming up.

 

Jeep released more teasers of their all-new Grand Wagoneer, which is finally coming out. Some day...

They have a big "Grand Wagoneer event" next week, but apparently, they will only show a concept version. So basically, that roof might very well not make it to production. Just like Cadillac with the Lyriq, we will have to wait even longer to see the real thing.


Same thing inside. These vents look pretty cool and retro. Even a bit reminiscent of the 1930s and 40s Streamline Modern designs. Which is a great idea.

This will be a giant truck-based SUV. Competing with other giant trucks from GM and Ford. Just like they used to in the '60s and '70s. 


Thursday, August 27, 2020

2022 Subaru BRZ: another try

 

As I mentioned before, the Toyota 86 has been selling very poorly in the US. (less than 4000 sold last year)

The Subaru clone did even worse with only 2334 units sold in 2019.

And yet, there will be a second-generation coming out next spring. While I am glad to see more 2 door cars available, I just can't see the business case for this one...

Most people are expecting the new generation to finally get a more powerful turbo option. Especially since it is now even available in the little Crosstrek! A decent interior would help a lot too.


2021 Mercedes AMG SL: sportier.

 



Mercedes always keeps the SL model for a while. The current generation came out in 2012. As you can see, an all-new one is on its way. And Mercedes even provided these (fake) spy shots to promote it early.

And yes, if that front end looks like an AMG, that's because it is one. The new car will be called the "AMG SL". And will have a sportier feel than the current model.

I think this is too bad. A couple of years ago, there was a rumor about the next SL growing a bit to replace both the SL and S-class coupe. I guess not.

Instead, the new one will be smaller and sportier. Soon there will be nowhere to go for those Mercedes buyers looking for a comfy 2 door from their favorite brand...

Maybe that's what the gorgeous Lexus LC is for now...

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

2021 Mercedes S-Class: same old...

 


I am sure the 'all-new' 2021 Mercedes S-class will be a fantastic car.

But I still think Mercedes is really pushing the 'design laziness' to new limits. I know other manufacturers are doing the same thing. Which doesn't make it right.

So far, each generation has looked pretty different from the previous one. Except now, where only current owners and Mercedes super-fans will be able to recognize the new one.

Too bad these are not as reliable as they used to be, because there would really be no reason to buy a brand new one over a nice 4 or 5-year-old model...

At least as far as their exterior designs are concerned, it seems they've given up...

2022 Chevrolet Bolt and Bolt SUV: finally...

 




The top photo is a teaser for the all-new Chevrolet Bolt 'SUV'. Supposedly a slightly larger and roomier version of the Bolt EV.
Interesting to notice that it has a different design than the Chinese version, sold as the Buick Velite 6 (2nd pic) The GM preview pic showed to US dealers years ago also turned out to be the Chinese model (right above)

While it is nice to finally (after 4 years) see GM sell another EV, it sure doesn't really look larger than the regular Bolt. At least from the teaser.



At the same time (or maybe a bit earlier), the "regular" Bolt will get a mid-cycle refresh with a few changes.

On the teaser above you can already tell the front end has been redesigned. To look more similar to the new 'Bolt SUV' model.

It also seems that, at least on this version, the chrome trim is gone.

The bad news is that these cars (at least the all-new one) are still almost a year away since production is scheduled to start in the summer of 2021. GM had previously mentioned 'late 2020'.

I guess since so few people are buying cars these days, what's the rush...

2021/22 Kia Sportage: already?

 



                                                         

I guess it is time for an all-new Kia Sportage. Even though it really doesn't need a new design at all.

I think the Sportage is still one of the best compact Crossover out there. (the red one above) It also has a very good and modern powertrain.

Just like I think the alll new Honda Civic I posted yesterday isn't really needed right now.

Except, unlike the Civic, the current Sportage isn't a big hit for Kia. With "only" about 89 000 of them sold last year. I guess the next one will be roomier, to better compete with the ever-growing CR-V and RAV-4.

From the spy shots, it also looks like the Sportage will adopt a very different profile. The current one with that "squared-off" rear side window has been around since the previous generation (And still looks great)


Tuesday, August 25, 2020

2021 Hyundai Kona: simple things...



It looks like the mid-cycle 'facelift' will be pretty intence for the Hyundai Kona. And a vast improvement over the overly busy designed front-end of the current model.

The Kona is a cute little SUV. It also drives really nice thanks to a great powertrain. ( I test drove one HERE)

But the front and rear ends are a mess. From the teasers above, it seems the revised model for 2021 will address the problems.

The front end on these teasers looks much better. Let's hope they did the same thing for the rear end.

The interior could also use a few small upgrades and a better-integrated screen. Like most current Hyundai designs...

A sporty N Line will be included for 2021. And later, a full one N model will be offered.

 

2021/22 Honda Civic: hard to tell...

 





Still very hard to tell of guess what the all-new Civic will look like. The rearview mirrors are now on the doors. The side windows seem to be a bit taller (Especially for the rear doors)
Otherwise, it's really hard to tell!

I think the Civic is still a great looking compact. Inside and out. And also still very popular. (with over 325 000 sold last year!)
I am sure Honda will not 'rock the boat' with such a hugely popular model. And why would they?
This is already a great car that really doesn't need much of an improvement...

Audi Q5 SportBack: the fake coupe version.




It's no secret Audi and VW are in the process of adding a sleeker 'coupe' version of every single SUV model they make.
The Audi Q5 just got a few mid-cycle changes, and we are now seeing a few spy shots of the upcoming 'coupe' version.
Which, at least to me, does look better than the regular model. 

 
As you can see, even with the latest refresh, the Q5 kept its old interior. Including the cheap-looking tablet screen that just doesn't belong there. (It seems like it is just clipped to the vents with some velcro) Looking more like something you see on a much cheaper Toyota RAV-4.
This is basically a previous generation interior design for Audi. The only models still using it are the A4 and A5.
All others (Even the revised Q7) use a much more upscale and modern design.
So, even though that Q5 Sportback will be promoted as an 'all-new model'. It will probably have this previous generation interior design...

Which is too bad. 

Monday, August 24, 2020

2022 Genesis EV: a small luxury hatchback?

 



This all-new Genesis Electric model will share its platform with the upcoming Hyundai Ioniq 45. And the new Kia version as well. 
While the Hyundai will have its design inspired by what Giugiaro/Ital Design was doing for the brand back in the '70s and early 80's (What the Concept 45 was in the 1st place), the Kia version will be "slightly" inspired by recent concepts.

But I am not sure what this Genesis model will be like at all. It almost looks weird.
Too small and ungainly to be from a luxury brand.
I suspect this might be for Europe, and might not make it to the US. Since Hyundai/Kia will already have a few EVs for our market.

Apparently, Genesis is supposed to launch in Europe, maybe as soon as next year. The G80, G90 sedans, and GV80 SUV are really big cars for the European market. (I don't think they'll even bother selling the G90 over there...)
The upcoming GV70 will be a perfect size. So is the G70 sedan. And especially the upcoming G70 sport wagon.
But the EV pictured here will be perfect for Europe. Where small electric hatchback are now being offered by almost every manufacturer these days.

What do you think? Will we ever see this small hatchback Genesis EV in the US?


2022 Buick Encore: finally a new one on the way.

 



As we know, the new Encore GX is not a replacement for the aging "regular" Encore, but a slightly larger and more expensive model. The one pictured above is. The current Encore is now 8 years old. And was basically a US version of the previous generation Opel Mokka.

The new design already look sleeker and more modern. The rumored engine is the same 3 cylinder 1.3 Liter engine used in the larger Encore GX. 

I guess we maihg tlao see a Chevrolet version of this a bit later, replaing the current Trax (?)

Sunday, August 23, 2020

2022 Mercedes C-Class: familiar

 


Another shot of a prototype for the next-generation C-Class, driving around. Looking so familiar already.
Since the body seems to be a cross between the current model, and the revised 2020 E-Class lights.

I guess the Mercedes fans don't really need anything more...

Cruising Instagram: what could have been...

 







This week is just a series of 'what could have been'. In another world. Almost the same as ours. If an exec in charge had picked another design...


- The first picture shows an alternate design from 2002, for the Toyota Metrix. Which is quite different from what the real thing was...

- Here we have something interesting. Which would have been a coupe version of the eagle Premier (remember these?) in the US. The Premier was a US version of the Renault 25 hatchback. Sold over here as an Eagle/AMC sedan.

- This one is a weird, far-out idea of what the European (German) Ford Granada could have looked like for its 2nd generation. Even though the European Granada was a far more modern car than the US version, these designs look pretty wild for a mainstream sedan...

- These are from 1994. Showing what a second-generation range Rover could have looked like.

- In 1978, it looks like GM was actually thinking about a 2 door version of the really cool looking Opel manta Coupe. 

- This futuristic-looking thing is from 1987. Showing an idea for the 5th generation Chevrolet Corvette. 

- Here we have something that never came to be: the Cadillac La Scala from 1973. Cadillac was still toying with the idea of a small sedan. Which became the 1st generation, Seville, a few years later. But, as you can see, the early idea was to have both a sedan and a coupe. Since at that time, the 'regular' Deville Coupe was more popular than the sedan version. Although I am a big fan of the 1st Seville, I really like this La Scala design ...

- The last one is one of the many ideas Ford had for the 2021 Bronco. This one does look pretty cool. But I think what they ended up with is one of the best car designs in years. Ford did an amazing job with the new Bronco.