Happy New Year’s Eve, fellow CarGurus!
I got to thinking that as 2010 descends upon us, we’re really only about 6 months away from seeing the first 2011 model year vehicles enter dealerships. That blows my mind a little, especially when I realized that my 2007 vehicle, which still feels new to me, will be four model years old. Wow.
My man jgoods just brought us a top-notch list of the best cars of 2009, so on this final 2009 edition of Cars Coming Soon, it’s time to take a sneak peek into what automakers could bring us in 2010. Behold, my 2011 model year preview:
A typically equipped 2010 Audi A8 costs around $82,000, with a price increase coming for the 2011 model. Audi believes that leaves room for an all-new 2011 Audi A7, which will sticker for about that much but offer a sexier design than the conservative A8. Availability of the sportback A7 is expected in late 2010.
The Bavarians have been busy creating some controversy and designing cars some believe (myself included) aren’t really needed. The BMW X1 is one of those, and will come in 2010 as a 2011 model. The X1 is a small crossover that comes with less interior space than the X3, but a price that will almost match its bigger stablemate’s. The question remains: Why?
2010 may go down in history as the year Chevy got small. The 2011 Chevy Cruze will replace the Cobalt, and is expected to get 40 mpg on the highway. The 2011 Chevy Orlando is a 7-seat people mover based on the Cruze’s platform, meaning we should see lots of interior space and good fuel mileage. Finally for Chevy, the much-hyped electric Chevy Volt should appear. The question is, will it catch on and begin to change the way people think about fueling their cars? I’m thinking the Orlando has a much better chance of achieving that goal.
For those of you living in fantasy land, I have this for you: the Ferrari 458 Italia. I’ll quote myself from the day I first discovered the specs:
Like its name implies, the 458 is powered by a 4.5-liter 8-cylinder engine. But here’s where it gets really good: That engine will crank out 570 horsepower at a breathtaking 9,000 rpm. That’s not a typo – nine thousand revolutions per minute. If I’m not mistaken, that would make the 458 the highest-revving production Ferrari ever built. From a standstill, 62 miles per hour should be reached in less than 3.5 seconds.
The Fiesta will finally arrive and, Ford hopes, become a sales home run. Ford will also unleash its Super Duty pickup, which features an all new 6.7-liter diesel engine. Best truck ever? Ford sure seems to think so.
Hyundai wowed the world with the Genesis, so why not try again? This time the Koreans are gunning for the Lexus LS 460 with the 2011 Equus, the crown jewel of the Hyundai line. It better be, because a $50,000+ Hyundai is going to be hard to swallow.
Land Rover has been in need of a smaller, more fuel efficient SUV since… well… forever. For 2011, the company will produce the Range Rover LRX, which will be the smallest Land Rover ever built, but cost more than the LR2 and LR4, slotting right beneath the Range Rover Sport. I see what Land Rover was going for with the size, but predict slow sales if it costs upwards of $50K.
Continuing the trend of getting smaller, Mazda will bring its version of the Ford Fiesta to the U.S. The MAZDA2 promises to be stylish, fun-to-drive and a good a value for the money. It’s a shame that it gets the same silly grin as the MAZDA3, though.
The Gullwing returns! Some people say that humans shouldn’t lust after machines. That’s mostly correct, but the 2011 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG is an exception. Car & Driver estimates it’ll cost about a quarter-million dollars – not bad for 6.2 liters and 563 horsepower of V8 fun.
I can’t think of a small car that has gotten more coverage than Toyota’s iQ. The tiny runabout has been converted into the Aston Martin Cygnet and now will hit the streets in the U.S. as a 2011 Scion iQ. (That is, unless Toyota waits and makes it a 2012 model.)
So there you go, my car-loving friends. Lots of debuts to get excited about, and lots of test drives to take! I look forward to sharing the latest auto news, hearing your thoughts, and of course, voicing my opinion of it all in 2010. But first, enjoy a safe and happy New Year’s Eve!
Drop us a comment about what you’re looking forward to driving in 2010!