What Was That? Some New Model Names for 2017

2017 Porsche 718 Cayman and 718 Boxster

In 2015 Americans bought more new cars than in any previous year, but those numbers can’t hide one of the auto business’s dirty little secrets: even when shoppers buy lots of cars, not every model sells well. We’re now winding down the 2016 model year, so we know which models won’t return for 2017. There are a few we won’t miss too much (take care, CR-Z!), but happily, a number of good models that won’t come back for 2017 have already been replaced or will move on under new names. Here are some vehicles we’re glad will return, even if they’ve had to adopt an alias to do so.

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The Impact of the Japanese Earthquakes on Lexus, Toyota Models

2015 Toyota Camry

The news of the recent earthquakes that struck Japan had a strong impact on the U.S. auto market when it comes to Toyota and Lexus. Several models have had to suspend production while the factories are inspected and repaired.

It’s even affected Toyota’s position as the number-one automaker. That spot was usurped by Volkswagen because of the shutdowns. Yes, in spite of the diesel emissions scandal, VW is on top because of the popularity of its Audi, Porsche, and Skoda brands.

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How to Enjoy a New England Winter Weekend Without Snow

2016 New England Int'l Auto Show Press Day

CarGurus was honored to attend yesterday’s press preview of the 2016 New England International Auto Show. With more than 600 cars from 37 manufacturers valued at over $22 million, we were able to see and get into a bunch of brand-new vehicles for the first time. The show offers any car fan with an interest in new vehicles an unbeatable opportunity to take a close look at and ask experts questions about the wide world of cars available to American buyers.

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Cars Coming Soon: Porsche Macan to Debut at LA Auto Show

2014_porsche_macan

Auto Express seems to have a lot of “unnamed insiders” on their bankroll. In spite of its mysterious sources, the outlet has a pretty good track record of being accurate, so we take this news with a certain level of excitement:

The Porsche Macan SUV could debut at this year’s Los Angeles Auto Show and be released next Spring.

Sure, the idea of an entry-level Porsche SUV is like Target selling a thousand-dollar handbag. Even the words don’t seem to go together in a sentence. Get used to the idea, though, and pretty soon you’ll be clamoring at the doors of your nearest Porsche dealer to get your hands on one.

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Cars Coming Soon: Hypercars from McLaren and SSC

SSC Tuatara

SSC Tuatara

By the end of this year two of the fastest, most extreme cars to ever grace the earth will be available to discerning buyers. More accurately, they will begin to be delivered to buyers who ordered them well in advance.

McLaren and SSC (formerly Shelby SuperCars) have released more details about their shiver-inducing machines and the timing of their releases, which should be close enough to stage some pretty intense comparison testing. Instead of racing to 60 miles per hour, though, these cars will be measured by the time it takes to approach 200.

With around 2,200 horsepower between the two cars and prices well above a million dollars each, 2013 should end with a blistering battle for supercar supremacy.

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Cars Coming Soon: Mitsubishi’s Offensive Includes Subcompact Sedan

Mitsubishi G4 Concept

Mitsubishi G4 Concept

Last year, two car companies in America were on death watch.

Suzuki closed up shop on its North American operations not long after speculation of impending doom began, while Mitsubishi looked to be close behind on the way to the exit.

As we’re closing in on the midway point of 2013, it seems Mitsubishi could be on the verge of a turnaround. The company will need a pretty intense product offensive to lure customers back into showrooms, but a couple new Mitsubishi vehicles coming down the pipe could be just enough to save the brand.

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Cars Coming Soon: The Terrafugia Flying Car, Version 2.0

terrafugia_TF-X

I spent the final night of 1989 at a bowling alley. At 12 years old, my parents wanted to make that New Year’s Eve memorable and took my brothers and I midnight bowling.

I remember feeling a sense of awe that the calendar was about to switch the 1990s. It sounded so futuristic and had the potential to be the decade that would bring on the realization of a future I’d seen in the movies. I half expected to see flying cars in the sky on the ride home in those first hours of the 1990s.

Of course, all the 1990s brought us was email, the Internet and Vanilla Ice. Not a single flying car anywhere in the world.

If only the 12-year-old me from 1990 could have seen what Terrafugia has planned in the second decade of the 21st century!

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Cars Coming Soon: 2014 Mercedes-Benz S-Class “Leaked”

2014-Mercedes-Benz-S-Class-Leak

When photos of coming new cars are “leaked” on the Internet, there’s a good chance the manufacturer was somehow responsible. Nothing triggers blog coverage and media attention in the car industry more than photos of a yet-to-be-released new car.

Make that car the flagship sedan of a best-selling luxury brand in the United States, and odds are, the leak isn’t a mistake, but a well-orchestrated publicity grab. That’s pure conjecture, of course, but it’s what I’d do if I was in charge of marketing at a car company.

What you see above is the “leaked” image of the officially still-veiled 2014 Mercedes-Benz S-Class.

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Cars Coming Soon: The Great Wall Steed, and Other Chinese Vehicles

Great Wall Steed

Great Wall Steed

Imagine the irony of this:

A Chinese car company finally sells vehicles in the United States and even builds a factory here to manufacture the cars it sells. Meanwhile, an American car company selling cars in China builds a factory there to produce the vehicles it sells there.

Did you follow that?

General Motors sells more cars in China than it does here in the States, so it makes business sense to build cars there. No Chinese company, though, has ventured into the U.S. market to sell cars, much less build them here.

That could change. And soon.

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Cars Coming Soon: A Midsize GM Truck to Challenge Tacoma

New Chevrolet Colorado

Sales of the Toyota Tacoma are up this year almost 23 percent over last year. No, that’s not the most significant or exciting statistic ever mentioned in a car blog, but it could be the foundation for an exciting development over at General Motors.

GM got out of the midsize truck business last year after the mediocre GMC Canyon and Chevrolet Colorado failed to light showroom floors on fire. Ford and Chrysler exited the market in 2011, leaving the Tacoma and Nissan Frontier as the two major midsizers in the Unites States.

The Tacoma is the undisputed king of the world in its segment, and challenging it isn’t an easy task. That’s pretty much the common consensus, as most automakers would rather roll over than even try to offer a challenge.

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