The Los Angeles Auto Show is one of the most influential events in the automotive industry. The past weekend saw the debuts and updates of many different vehicles – from simple economy cars to top-of-the-line luxury exclusives. The round-up below highlights our favourites, all of which can be seen at the L.A. Auto Show until November 30.
Best Affordable Car: Mazda CX-3
The Mazda CX-3 is taking the compact-crossover world by storm. Not only is this vehicle production-ready, but it should be hitting dealership floors as early as late spring of next year. With its great looks, SkyActiv engine and driver-focused cabin, the CX-3 is sure to be a hit on the Canadian market.
Best Fuel Cell Car: Toyota Mirai
The Toyota Mirai may not be the best looking car on the market, but it’s the first hydrogen-powered fuel cell car on sale to the public. The car, whose name means “future” in Japanese, has a 480-kilometre range (or more), while emitting nothing but water vapour.
Best SUV: Ford Explorer
The 2015 Ford Explorer is a 25th Anniversary edition, offeing a new engine, upgraded technology and a special Platinum Edition. The Explorer will be available with a 2.3-litre EcoBoost four-cylinder engine, which will bring it up to date with the rest of the Ford lineup. Ford is anticipating that the Explorer will achieve a balance of power and fuel economy.
Best Muscle Car: Ford Mustang Shelby GT350
The Ford Mustang Shelby GT350 is the latest model in the muscle car showdown. The biggest update for the GT350 comes in the form of the 5.2-litre V8 engine, which drops the traditional supercharger for a high-revving natural aspiration. The tweak will bring this muscle car to produce upwards of 500 horsepower and 400 pound-feet of torque.
Best Gearbox Upgrade: Jaguar F-Type
The Jaguar F-Type is a sport car that offers power, precision and luxury. But without a manual transmission, the previous iteration has disappointed plenty of drivers. Well, drivers, fear no more! The F-Type has arrived with the first manual gearbox, as well as a range of other improvements, including an upgraded infotainment system.
Best New Convertible: Bentley Grand Convertible
The Bentley Grand Convertible had very little build-up, but once this beauty was revealed, all eyes were on it. This beauty is an open-top Muslanne with two doors and seating for four. The finishes are exquisite, and the 6.7-litre V8 engine delivers amazing power. While it is being revealed as a concept, a limited-edition production is sure to be in the near future.
Best Race Car: Cadillac ATS V.R.
The Cadillac ATS V.R., which was revealed next to the ATS-V, will put Cadillac back on the racing map. Cadillac plans to have this car race in some of the FIA leagues, which will also feature cars from Aston Martin, Audi, Bentley, BMW, Ferrari and more. Under the hood of this car is a 3.6-litre twin-turbo V6, which has been tweaked to meet racing specifications.
Best Concept Car: Audi Prologue
Anticipation of the Audi concept has been building up for quite some time now, and the big reveal did not disappoint. The Audi Prologue concept is the example of the future design direction for Audi’s larger cars, showing that rather than going back to the drawing board completely, designers will be making tweaks and sharpening existing designs. The exterior is stunning and the interior is very high-tech. We may even see examples of this come into production as early as 2016.
Most Talked About Car: Mercedes-Benz Maybach S600
Mercedes-Benz makes another bold move for 2014 by re-introducing its super-luxury brand Maybach. The Maybach S600 will serve as an option to S-Class shoppers who are looking for just a bit more luxury in their lives. This prestigious sedan will compete against other uber-luxurious vehicles, such as Bentley and Rolls-Royce.