Its our eighth New York International Auto Show, but Day 1 never seems to get easier. With manufacturers firing off press conferences every 15 minutes, there’s new models and new information everywhere you look. We’ve distilled the list down to what we consider the big highlights from Day 1.
Nissan GTR Nismo & 50th Anniversary
This generation GT-R has been with us since 2008. That’s 11 model years of continuous improvement and tweaks to the chassis and engine. 2017 brought a large refresh with a new interior and exterior design. Now though, the 2020 GT-R has an updated NISMO and Track Edition. The NISMO sports all new turbochargers, carbon fiber bumpers, fenders, roof, hood, trunk, sideskirts and wing. Also new are the RAYS wheels and titanium exhaust with blue tips. The front fenders now have vents, which allow to reduce pressure in the wheel wells for better aerodynamics. The Track Edition gets the NISMO’s 600 horsepower tune as well as some of the other weight saving measures. Our favorite, however, is the 50th Anniversary Edition in Bayside Blue. It will be based on the Premium trim and incorporate the new exhaust system as well as unique touches such as blue accents on the wheels and a unique gray/black interior scheme.
Now in its fourth generation, the Highlander has received a whole new and more sophisticated look. Being a Toyota, its foundation is based on safety, comfort, quality, durability and reliability. To us, its design is reminiscent of the previous Highlander with a bit of new RAV4 sprinkled in. There are a lot of curvy lines, which lead your eyes in many directions. Toyota will continue to offer two engine choices – 295hp 3.5-liter V6 or the Hybrid System which includes a 2.5-liter DOHC four-cylinder engine with two electric motors. Overall, you are looking at a bottom line of 22mpg with the gas option and 34mpg for the hybrid. They have introduced the new Highlander with key standard options like Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, SiriusXM, Waze and Amazon Alexa compatibility. One other item of note, is the revised all-wheel drive system with Dynamic Torque Vectoring AWD with multi terrain select. This will improve the Highlander’s capability in less than ideal weather conditions.
In a continued effort to attract younger clientele to the brand, Lincoln has unveiled the Corsair. There are elements of the design that carry over from its larger siblings, the Aviator and Navigator. The technology offerings are quite impressive. It comes with head-up display, Lincoln Co-Pilot360 driver assist features and Phone As A Key just to name a few. Instead of the more traditional warning sounds, if a seat belt is not buckled you will hear different type chimes. These sounds have been recorded by the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Beyond design, a quiet ride experience played a significant role in the Corsair’s design. It has a dual-wall dashboard in the engine compartment, which is not typically found in this segment, and Active Noise Control. The Corsair will come standard with a 2.0-liter engine with approximately 250hp and 275lb-ft of torque or an optional 2.3-liter with an estimated 280hp and 310lb-ft of torque. Both engine options will be paired with a new 8-speed automatic transmission.
Heritage is the name of the game here. The all-new 992 generation 911 has been announced, but Porsche is still printing money with the 991 GT variants. The all-new Speedster, however, is not technically a GT variant, though it was developed by Porsche’s GT division. Utilizing an updated version of the 4.0L flat six with individual throttle bodies like those from the GT3 R, there’s now more power and better responsiveness than the GT3. The six-speed manual is the only game in town here, no PDK option. The car is lighter than the Carrera 4 Cabriolet that it is based on, and utilizes large amounts of carbon fiber. Production is limited to 1948 units worldwide, and the price is an eye watering $275,750 with destination.
The family hauler of Mercedes-Benz SUV lineup has finally received a long overdue re-do. It now comes with more comfort, more space, and more luxury. The redesign has given the GLS smoother lines with similar styling to its smaller siblings. Its comfort is thanks to the E-ACTIVE BODY CONTROL suspension, which also aids in better handling and off-road capabilities. An odd but cool feature is the Carwash function. With the click of a button in the cabin, it raises the suspension to its highest level, closes any open windows and sunroof, and folds in the mirrors. Even the third row passengers are treated with the utmost class by providing heated seats and separate USB charging ports
If you expected an all new look from Subaru, then you don’t really know the brand. The all-new 2020 Subaru Outback looks very familiar, though the rear does look sleeker than before. The big news, however, is the return of a turbocharged trim level. The Subaru XT will have a 2.4L turbocharged boxer engine with 260hp and 277lb-ft torque. That engine, with the standard CVT and symmetrical all-wheel-drive, can tow up to 3,500 lbs. Inside, a huge 11.6″ tablet-style infotainment display sits integrated into the console. As for the display the Outback sits upon? Check back on our 5 Best/Worst list for more details!
Cadillac has been firing shots across the bow of the BMW 3 Series for a while now. The new CT5 is their latest and greatest attempt. Replacing both the CTS and ATS, the new CT5 will be available either with a 2.0L turbo or a twin-turbo 3.0L V6. Both powertrains are paired with GM’s 10-speed transmission and your choice of RWD or AWD. Confusingly, Cadillac has introduced a new badge scheme, where the number equates to newton-meters of torque. How perfect, though, that the V6’s badge reads “550T”, a perfect 110 more than BMW’s “340” monkier. Good news for potential buyers, however. The interior is a major upgrade from the ATS with a digital dash, 10″ screen, and plenty of actual buttons to replace the touch-only CUE system. Expect pricing between $40k-$60k for a fully loaded V6.
Ford Mustang High Performance Package
The new High Performance Package adds some extra kick to the 2.3L EcoBoost 4 cylinder. The new package ups power to 330 horsepower and 350 lb-ft. Also included are larger front brakes, five drive modes, and a limited slip rear differential. There is also a Handling Package which adds magneride dampers, wider wheels and tires, and semi-metallic brake pads from the V8 Performance Package. The 10 speed automatic and six-speed manual are the available transmissions. Ford claims a mid 4 second sprint to 60, so it should be rapid. Unfortunately, the V8 soundtrack isn’t included.
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