Ford showed up with their highly anticipated 2013 Fusion, but surprised the audience by not only offering a hybrid, but also a plug-in hybrid. Even better, Ford claims that the MPGe will be better than Chevy's Volt. The Fusion Energi will also be the first PHEV to join the mid-sized segment when it comes out in 8-12 months. Power will come from the Fusion Hybrid's 2.0-liter Atkinson-cycle engine, but will include a larger lithium-ion battery--the specs of which have not yet been released. Needless to say, this car looks stunning and will be the largest PHEV sedan available.
The new Fusion Hybrid impresses with a new lithium-ion battery that replaces the older nickel-metal hydride in the current Fusion Hybrid. The more powerful battery allowed engineers to lift the electric-only cruising speed from 47 mph to 62 mph. While official EPA ratings have yet to be announced, Ford estimates 47 mpg in the city and 44 mpg on the highway. Those are pretty impressive numbers considering the size.
Acura NSX Concept
We've been waiting for this car and have been curious about how Acura might approach a new NSX. As Honda/Acura are now better known for fuel efficiency over performance, enthusiasts hoped that the next NSX wouldn't be watered down. But Acura is showing that great fuel economy won't hurt performance. The new NSX Concept is all about lightweight materials and a unique hybrid powertrain.
A rear-mounted V6 engine will power the rear wheels in connection with an electric motor mounted in between the engine and Acura's new dual-clutch transmission. Additionally, two electric motors up front will assist with both positive or negative torque to improve cornering and acceleration. We think this will be very useful in hard cornering on twisty roads.
The strategy for Acura is to have an "extremely favorable power-to-weight ratio." Remember how great the original CRX was? That car only had 90 hp, but it weighed 1800 lbs.
With a hard to remember name, but hard to forget face, Lexus unveiled their LF-LC sport coupe concept. Of all cars in the Lexus portfolio, a sports coupe is what customers have asked for most. Thankfully, this isn't an updated SC430.
This car, while certainly futuristic looking from the outside, also features a pretty impressive interior. The feel is very posh, with shiny metals, lots of wood accents and soft leathers and suede. Infotainment is no less exciting. A pair of 12.3-inch screens display navigation and infotainment all with a touch. Lexus' mouse-based controller is nowhere to be found. Instead, there is a tablet-like surface where the driver can type and add other inputs. It's a pretty amazing sign of things to come.
Toyota Tech Demo
While these features haven't made their way to any vehicles to date, it is a sign of things to come. If you recall, there are numerous 1980's videos portraying visions of the future that are actually coming true today. This could be the case here.