The Best And Worst Of The New York Auto Show
With important debuts from Chevrolet, Hyundai, Mercedes-Benz and many more, this year's auto show in the Big Apple was one of the busiest yet. Click through to see our favorites, as well as a couple stinkers.
If you're looking for even more coverage, head on over to Autoblog for complete coverage of every single new debut.
Best - Subaru OutbackThe Outback has been completely redesigned for 2015. It now comes with a new front fascia, which includes a hexagonal grille, a new lower-grille shape, new fog light cladding and a sharp crease for a shoulder line. The rocker-panel cladding and its 'toothed' molding remain, but it now also doubles as a step for when you want to place items on the roof rack.
Subaru also says updates to the entire 2015 Outback make it roomier, more powerful, more efficient and quieter. The vehicle is bigger in almost every dimension, it includes more sound dampening material and, with the four-cylinder engine, is capable of getting 33 mpg on the highway.
We're fans of this modern new look and are happy to see that Subaru has made some needed interior updates, as well.
Subaru Outback Information
Subaru Outback Photos
Best - Ford Transit Connect Skyline EditionThis luxed-out van was one of our favorite sights at this year's show. The Ford Transit Connect Skyline Edition comes with four finely crafted captain's buckets that can be moved into different formations based on need. The seats can be swung around to face a 52-inch screen if riders want to watch a movie. A table can be popped up, if you need to get some business done. And there's even a configuration for tailgating.
The materials are way plush and there is a ton of room. The leather seats and wood floors look great. The vehicle comes with customized luggage in the trunk, too.
Ford Transit Connect Skyline Edition Information
Ford Transit Connect Skyline Edition Photos
Best - Alfa Romeo 4CThe Alfa Romeo 4C marks the return of the Italian brand to our shores. This little coupe should be fun to drive, as it's super-lightweight, mid-engined, turbocharged and with non-power-assisted steering.
It's also quite visually striking, with lots of curves conveying the car's super sporty demeanor. Pricing could be an issue for this car. According to Car & Driver, the first 4C models to hit American pavement will cost around $86,000. That's a good deal more expensive than its closest competitor, the Porsche Boxster and about the same as a low-end 911 or loaded Cayman.
Alfa Romeo 4C Information
Alfa Romeo 4C Photos
Best - Nissan MuranoNissan has a history of designing cars that land on the ugly side of the spectrum, but in our collective opinion, the Murano looks great. We're big fans of the aggressive headlights, wheels and in-your-face grille. We think the design will really resonate with crossover buyers. The orange color the car in which the car debuted looks pretty sharp, as well.
The Murano's interior has been redone, as well. The material quality appears to be significantly improved for 2015. There are also loads of optional, upmarket interior items, like heated and cooled front seats, a heated rear bench and an huge panoramic sunroof.
Nissan Murano Information
Nissan Murano Photos
Best - Hyundai SonataThough we've already seen the striking sedan in a wealth of recent photos, seeing the car in person confirmed that Hyundai has another hit on its hands. The Sonata employs the Korean automaker's new design language, which we already witnessed with the Genesis. Hyundai describes the language as being more dignified, respectable and confident. We certainly agree with that.
Additional updates include a redesigned and bigger interior, which Hyundai says greatly emphasizes ergonomics and comfort, a much more rigid platform, a wealth of new safety features and lots of new tech and infotainment updates, including the smart trunk, which is one of the simplest, yet most novel features we've seen in 2014.
Hyundai Sonata Information
Hyundai Sonata Photos
Best - Mercedes-Benz S63 AMGWe weren't sure turning the big S-Class into a coupe again would work from an aesthetic standpoint. Boy, were we wrong. The designers at Mercedes turn this huge luxury sedan into a sleek, sexy coupe and added AMG power, to boot.
Under the brawny hood of this car is a hand-built, twin-turbocharged 5.5-liter V8 engine, which can produce 577 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque. Mercedes' seven-speed AMG Speedshift automatic transmission handles that force, which pushes the vehicle to 60 miles per hour in a blistering 3.9 seconds.
Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG Information
Mercedes-Benz S63 AMG Photos
Best - Mazda MX-5 Miata 25th Anniversary EditionThe 25th Anniversary Miata isn't really much of a new car, but it made our list because it represents our favorite display of the entire show. To celebrate 25 years of Miata, Mazda showed off 15 old models and concepts, as well as the chassis of the yet-to-be-revealed next-gen roadster. It was truly a sight to behold.
The 25th Anniversary Edition Miata comes in a striking red color with contrasting black accents. The hardtop convertible will also come with either a manual or automatic transmission, Bilstein shocks and an off-white leather interior.
Mazda MX-5 Miata 25th Anniversary Edition Information
Mazda MX-5 Miata 25th Anniversary Edition Photos
Worst - BMW X4We weren't enamored with the BMW X4. A smaller version of the unattractive X6, the X4 is pricey (it starts at $45,625), ugly and is rather redundant in BMW's line. We're having a tough time discerning what this vehicle offers that you can't already get with the X3, the 3 Series Gran Turismo, the 3 Series Sport Wagon or the 4 Series Gran Coupe.
The vehicle is powered by either a 2.0-liter turbo-four with 240 horsepower or a more powerful, 3.0-liter turbo-six with 300 horsepower. An eight-speed automatic transmission is the sole transmission available with either engine.
BMW X4 Information
BMW X4 Photos
Worst - Acura TLXThe Acura TLX is going to replace both the Acura TL and TSX in the brand's line. The car will probably be perfectly fine, but Acura needs to do more than that if it wants to compete with the likes of Audi, Lexus and BMW. There's simply nothing here that truly piques our interest.
Power comes from either a 2.4-liter naturally aspirated inline-four with 206 horsepower, or a 3.5-liter V6 with 290 hp. The brand is finally ditching its six-speed transmission, offering a new eight-speed, dual-clutch gearbox with the 2.4-liter engine, and a swanky new nine-speed automatic with the 3.5-liter V6.
Acura TLX Information
Acura TLX Photos
Worst - Chevrolet CruzeTalk about a botched nose job. Chevrolet was looking to bring the Cruze's looks more in line with the rest of the brand, slapping the Malibu's grille onto this smaller sedan and calling it a day. It looks, well, off. The grille is much too big and clashes horribly with the headlights, giving the front end a very awkward feel. We don't see what was wrong with the old one.
Other updates to the Cruze are mostly on the inside, including a wealth of new technology features such as the ability to act as a 4G Wi-Fi hotspot, Siri Eyes Free for iPhone iOS 6 and iOS 7 users and, soon, access to the new Chevrolet AppShop.
Chevrolet Cruze Information
Chevrolet Cruze Photos