More than a few, let’s say a slew of crossovers will debut this week in New York.
Look for redesigned versions of two high-volume compacts — the Toyota RAV4 and Subaru Forester — and such newcomers as the Lincoln Aviator, Cadillac XT4 and the five-seat version of the Volkswagen Atlas, which will have a different name. Oh, and Hyundai brings on the freshened Tucson.
But there will be action on the sedan front in New York, too. Nissan hopes to turn heads with its redesigned Altima. In the confusion of crossovers, will it be a car that stands out?
Here’s a look at New York’s world premieres.
The long-awaited XT4 compact crossover that promises to introduce a new design language for the brand debuts on the eve of the New York auto show. Based on preview images and videos, the XT4 is more sculpted than Cadillac’s current cars and crossovers. It also marks an evolution of the brand’s signature LED lighting, while heavily featuring design cues from Cadillac’s well-received Escala concept.
The XT4, expected to arrive in showrooms in the fall, begins a product onslaught for the brand, which is expected to increase its crossover offerings from one to four by 2022. The XT4 will be smaller than the XT5 crossover and give General Motors a rival to vehicles such as the BMW X3 and Audi Q3.
Cadillac will also introduce an expanded 2019 CT6 lineup that includes the brand’s first exclusive V-8 engine in a quarter century. The CT6 V-Sport will get as standard a new 4.2-liter twin-turbo V-8 rated at 550 hp, while other versions of the CT6 will be available with an optional 500-hp version of the engine.
The redesigned Sierra full-size pickup debuted this month with bolder styling and industry-first technologies such as a carbon fiber box and six-way tailgate, but the brand has saved some surprises for the New York show.
Recent spy photos of an off-road-ready Sierra have some speculating the brand will debut a Sierra all-terrain model during a Sierra party before the show.
At the show, GMC will feature Black Edition 2019 models of the Terrain compact and Acadia large crossovers, which are distinguished by darker exterior features including aluminum wheels, roof rails and grille, among other things. The vehicles will be available in several colors other than black.
Honda plans to reveal the production version of the Insight hybrid. A prototype was shown in January at the Detroit auto show.
The freshened 2019 Tucson compact crossover makes its world debut. The brand is rebuilding its car-heavy lineup around the Tucson along with the new Kona subcompact crossover, and five-passenger Santa Fe and seven-passenger Santa Fe XL crossovers.
Lincoln will debut its crossover with the resurrected Aviator name this month. The vehicle, expected to arrive in showrooms next year, will be based on the redesigned Ford Explorer large crossover, also expected in 2019.
The Aviator is expected to come with an electrified powertrain option. During a new product showcase this month, Ford said that every new utility it introduces or redesigns moving forward will come with a hybrid variant — either a regular hybrid, plug-in hybrid or both.
Lincoln last sold the Aviator in 2006.
Mercedes-Benz will debut a collection of freshened C-class variants just weeks after it unveiled the freshened 2019 C-class sedan in Geneva.
Making their world debut in New York will be versions of the C-class coupe and convertible, including AMG C43 models for both. The C300 coupe and convertible get a new, more powerful four-cylinder engine, while the C43 variants get an updated and more powerful V-6 engine. The C-class variants also get many of the improvements, including extensive driver assistance technology, introduced in their larger siblings, the redesigned E class and re-engineered S class.
Mercedes also is expected to unveil its top-of-the-line C-class entry, the Mercedes-AMG C63 sedan, at the show.
Nissan Altima design sketch
Nissan will introduce a new-generation Altima midsize sedan in New York, meeting the challenge thrown down by the redesigned Toyota Camry and Honda Accord. Nissan believes sedans remain a vital product segment, and based on teaser images released before the show, it has redesigned the Altima to stand out from the group.
The car is expected to echo the dramatic look of the Vmotion 2.0 concept that Nissan showed at the 2017 Detroit auto show. That design offered a more pronounced front V-motion grille than other Nissan nameplates have received. It also indicated a roomier interior and a wider vehicle stance.
The Altima has been Nissan’s perennial best-selling nameplate until the rise of its Rogue crossover over the past two years. Nissan officials have said repeatedly that they believe there is still opportunity in sedans.
The Subaru Global Platform has been rolled out to the Impreza and Crosstrek, and will underpin the upcoming Ascent. Next will be the Forester crossover, a key element in Subaru’s U.S. growth and run of nine years of record sales. Spy photos suggest that the redesigned 2019 Forester could pick up some design elements from the Impreza and Crosstrek, but will likely keep the same general shape and attributes.
Toyota RAV4 teaser
Toyota will show a redesigned version of an iconic nameplate with mass appeal and, no, it’s not the long-awaited Supra. The RAV4 crossover was America’s best-selling vehicle last year with the exception of pickups, and it’s time for a rework after its last redesign as a 2013 model.
Several of its top competitors have been freshly overhauled and a new-generation Subaru Forester will also bow in New York. The fifth-generation RAV4 will move to the Toyota New Global Architecture modular platform with improved ride and handling, and should get the more powerful four-cylinder engine and eight-speed automatic transmission that debuted in the Camry last year.
The wild card is how wild the styling will be. Toyota’s recent crossover concepts have leaned toward a chunky, more masculine look, and the RAV4 is likely to be more distinctive than the plain-but-pleasant version that’s bowing out. Toyota engineers have expressed interest in creating a more trail-ready RAV4 to take on the likes of Jeep and the redesign could enable a Toyota Racing Development, or TRD, trim level that has been so successful on Toyota’s body-on-frame trucks and SUVs.
Volkswagen will show a concept of a five-seat version of its Atlas three-row crossover. The name for the new Atlas derivative hasn’t been revealed, although VW said last week it intends to build the new five-seater in Chattanooga starting late next year. Like the Atlas, the crossover will be built on Volkswagen’s MQB platform and will be front-wheel-drive based. It is expected to share a number of components with the Atlas, but will have slightly different styling, especially in the rear.
Vince Bond Jr., Lindsay Chappell, Laurence Iliff, Michael Martinez, Richard Truett, Larry P. Vellequette, Jack Walsworth, Michael Wayland and Amy Wilson contributed to this report.
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