Nissan – Automobile Magazine http://www.automobilemag.com No Boring Cars! | Reviews, Auto Shows, Lifestyle Wed, 24 Aug 2016 02:49:10 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.3 First Drive: 2017 Nissan Titan V-8 Crew Cab http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-titan-v8-crew-cab-review-first-drive-road-test/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-titan-v8-crew-cab-review-first-drive-road-test/#respond Thu, 18 Aug 2016 10:00:31 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=978580 It has become the tale of two Nissan Titans. We’ve known the big Titan XD with that massive Cummins diesel V-8 under its large Roman-nose front end. Now it has a little brother, if a half-ton Titan (minus the XD label) qualifies as little. Dimensionally, Titan versus Titan XD finds the smaller version 14.6 inches...

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It has become the tale of two Nissan Titans. We’ve known the big Titan XD with that massive Cummins diesel V-8 under its large Roman-nose front end. Now it has a little brother, if a half-ton Titan (minus the XD label) qualifies as little.

Dimensionally, Titan versus Titan XD finds the smaller version 14.6 inches shorter on a wheelbase that is 11.8 inches less than the big guy. Titan is 2.8 inches lower than the XD and rides on its own boxed frame with a double A-arm suspension up front and a live axle on leaf springs out back.

Both Titans share the same width—and with good reason. For all their differences front, back, and underneath, the pair of Titans share the same four-door crew cab from A-pillar to C-pillar. That brings with it the expected five- or six-place seating. The rear seats fold to create a lockable storage bin and a flat load-bearing floor. Up front is a very workable layout with a navigation screen up high, controls placed logically, and a steering-column-mounted shift lever, helping free up generous storage space.

2017 Nissan Titan rear three quarter in motion

The Titan brothers do look somewhat different. Because Nissan does not offer the Titan with the big diesel, the Nissan design team in La Jolla, California, could fit it with a smaller nose, one with a bit more shape. Working to improve aerodynamic performance, the Titan has such detailing as an active grille shutter, underfloor covers, and spoilers under the front chin, at the back of the cab roof, and on top of the tailgate.

Out back is a 5.5-foot bed with a tailgate that is damped for lowering so it doesn’t bang down when you open it. Options include the likes of a spray-in bed liner, a variety of channels with tie-down cleats and hooks, lighting, and lockable storage boxes.

Instead of that bruiser of a turbodiesel V-8, the 1/2-ton Titan uses a 5.6-liter gasoline V-8, with a V-6 coming in the future. The 5.6-liter Endurance V-8—an option in the Titan XD—produces 390 horsepower at 5,800 rpm. This puts the new direct-injected engine 73 horsepower ahead of its predecessor V-8. Torque is bumped by 9 lb-ft to 394 at 4,000 rpm.

2017 Nissan Titan badge

Backing the V-8 is a 7-speed automatic. Being a big pickup, you can order the Titan with two- or four-wheel drive. While we’re on numbers, fuel economy for the Titan comes in at 15/21/18 city/highway/combined. Another number that’s important to many pickup owners is towing capacity, which is 9,390 pounds (2×4 version). Nissan happily points out that it beats the F-150/Ram/Tundra/Silverado competition.

“Truckie” used to be a pejorative adjective that described what it was like to live with a pickup, feeling every bump, wrestling it down some roads. Not anymore. Mind you, this is still a truck, but steering effort, response, and such are at a level that you can actually enjoy the Titan on a curving road. Again, it’s not a sports car, but it’s not a struggle, either.

As for ride quality, a Nissan engineer explained that they “rounded” the Titan’s reactions to bumps, etc. You still know the road imperfections are there, but they are better separated from you than in the past. In fact, the total driving experience is smoother and quieter thanks to such features as a hydraulic body mount for the cab, better engine isolation, and laminated front side glass.

2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter in motion 02

For the time being the Titan is only offered as a crew cab, but single cab and king cab versions are on the horizon. No surprise there are five different models, with S, SV, and SL bringing added features up the line toward the check-all-boxes Platinum Reserve version. You name it, you can have it, from Around View Monitor to hill-descent control to a trailer brake controller to 110-volt outlets front and back. Off-roaders will head straight to the fifth model, the PRO-4X version with its electronic locking rear differential and Bilstein shocks.

When Nissan product planners noodled over final specs and features for the Titan, the competition’s sales must have weighed upon them. Ford’s F-150 has led U.S. light-vehicle sales for the past 34 years. Tucked in right behind are Chevrolet’s Silverado, and the Ram pickup. One of Nissan’s countermeasures is a five-year, 100,000-mile bumper-to-bumper limited warranty. The Detroit three and Toyota’s Tacoma come in at three years, 36,000 miles.

Will that turn the trick? Titan sales begin in late August, with prices ranging from $34,780 to $55,400.

2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter 05

2017 Nissan Titan Specifications

On Sale: Now
Price: $34,780 (base)
Engine: 5.6L DOHC 32-valve V-8/390 hp @ 5,800 rpm, 394 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm
Transmission: 7-speed automatic
Layout: 4-door, 5-passenger, front-engine, RWD/AWD pickup
EPA Mileage: 15/21 mpg (city/hwy)
L x W x H: 228.1 x 79.5 x 76.0 in
Wheelbase: 139.8 in
Weight: 5,508 lb
0-60 MPH: 7.0 sec (est)
Top Speed: N/A
2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter in motion 07 2017 Nissan Titan side profile 02 2017 Nissan Titan rear three quarter 2017 Nissan Titan wheel 2017 Nissan Titan side profile 01 2017 Nissan Titan headlamp 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter in motion 01 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter in motion 06 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter in motion 08 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter 07 2017 Nissan Titan front view in motion 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter in motion 05 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter 10 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter 03 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter 06 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter 02 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter 04 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter 01 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter 09 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter 08 2017 Nissan Titan front three quarter in motion 04 2017 Nissan Titan rear seat 04 2017 Nissan Titan rear seat 03 2017 Nissan Titan rear seat 01 2017 Nissan Titan rear seat 02 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum 4x4 half ton front quarter 04 1 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum 4x4 half ton front quarter 02 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum 4x4 half ton rear quarter 02 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum 4x4 half ton front view running lights 1 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum 4x4 half ton front quarter 05 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum 4x4 half ton rear quarter 03 1 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum 4x4 half ton front quarter 01 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab side profile 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab running board 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab rear three quarter 02 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab badge 02 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab rear three quarter 01 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab front three quarter 02 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab front three quarter 01 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab front end 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab tow mode 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab steering wheel 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab seat detail 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab seat adjusment controls 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab rear seat 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab rear seat floor 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab rear seat floor panel 02 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab rear seat floor panel 01 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab parking assistance display 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab lights control panel 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab interior detail 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab instrument panel 02 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab instrument panel 01 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab infotainment 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab heated steering wheel control 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab heated seat control 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab door speaker 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab door sill plate 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab charging ports 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab center console 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab center console rear panel 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab cabin 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab badge 03

 

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2017 Nissan Titan Crew Cab Half-Ton Pickup Starts at $35,975 http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-titan-crew-cab-half-ton-pickup-starts-35975/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-titan-crew-cab-half-ton-pickup-starts-35975/#respond Mon, 15 Aug 2016 21:00:46 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=977816 Nissan announced pricing for the half-ton 2017 Titan Crew Cab today. Prices start at $35,975 and go up to $56,595 for the range-topping Platinum Reserve 4×4. In addition, the Japanese automaker announced a new 5-year/100,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty for both the half-ton Titan and Titan XD. The 2017 Nissan Titan S Crew Cab half-ton 4×2 is...

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Nissan announced pricing for the half-ton 2017 Titan Crew Cab today. Prices start at $35,975 and go up to $56,595 for the range-topping Platinum Reserve 4×4. In addition, the Japanese automaker announced a new 5-year/100,000-mile bumper-to-bumper warranty for both the half-ton Titan and Titan XD.

The 2017 Nissan Titan S Crew Cab half-ton 4×2 is priced $1,510 less than the gasoline V-8-powered XD’s starting price of $37,485. Both trucks come equipped with Nissan’s 5.6-liter Endurance V-8 engine that makes 390 hp and 401 lb-ft of torque and comes mated to a seven-speed automatic transmission. For comparison, a 2016 Ford F-150 XLT crew cab equipped with the 5.0-liter V-8 costs $40,245 and a 2016 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 Crew Cab WT with the 5.3-liter V-8 costs $38,035. The Titan Crew Cab SV 4×2 starts at $38,865, while the SL 4×2 starts at $47,575. The Platinum Reserve 4×2 starts at $53,505. Adding four-wheel drive costs an additional $3,030 on the S and SV, $3,080 on the SL, and $3,090 on the Platinum Reserve. The off-road-focused Titan Crew Cab Pro-4X model starts at $46,215.

2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab front end 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab rear three quarter 01 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab side profile 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab rear three quarter 02 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab cabin 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab badge 02 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab badge 01 2017 Nissan Titan Platinum Reserve Crew Cab running board

Separately, Nissan announced what it’s calling “America’s Best Truck Warranty” for the 2017 Titan and Titan XD. The move follows the automaker’s introduction of “America’s Best Commercial Van Warranty” in 2014. Both programs cover 5 years or 100,000 miles, whichever comes first. The warranty includes both basic and powertrain coverage.

Pricing has not yet been announced for the Titan Single Cab, and a King Cab model and V-6 engine are still forthcoming. The 2017 Titan Crew Cab and XD are set to arrive at dealerships nationwide later this month. The single-cab half-ton and XD models arrive in late fall.

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This 1973 Nissan Skyline GT-R is Our Favorite Japanese Car from Pebble Beach Auctions http://www.automobilemag.com/news/%c2%acthis-1973-nissan-skyline-gt-r-favorite-japanese-car-pebble-beach-auctions/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/%c2%acthis-1973-nissan-skyline-gt-r-favorite-japanese-car-pebble-beach-auctions/#respond Sat, 13 Aug 2016 12:00:57 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=977636 While U.S. enthusiasts are losing their minds over legally-imported R32 Nissan Skyline GT-Rs, Japan has enjoyed Nissan’s halo sports car for almost 50 years, beginning way back with the 1969 C10 Nissan Skyline GT-R. Of course, the first time we tasted Nissan’s forbidden fruit was in 2009, when the R35 GT-R made landfall on our...

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While U.S. enthusiasts are losing their minds over legally-imported R32 Nissan Skyline GT-Rs, Japan has enjoyed Nissan’s halo sports car for almost 50 years, beginning way back with the 1969 C10 Nissan Skyline GT-R. Of course, the first time we tasted Nissan’s forbidden fruit was in 2009, when the R35 GT-R made landfall on our shores. Now, provided you have the means, you can play catch-up on all those wasted years with this fantastic 1972 Nissan Skyline GT-R up for sale during Gooding & Co.’s Pebble Beach auction.

1972 Nissan Skyline GT R Gooding and Co rear three quarter

This is one of the rare C10 “Hakosuka” (Boxy skyline) GT-Rs, a car hardly seen outside of Japan. The first GT-R was a run of homologation specials, meant to nip at the heels of worldwide competition. In its final iteration, the C10 GT-R packed a rev-happy 2.0-liter inline-six engine, pushing out 160 hp and 131 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels through a five-speed manual transmission.

1972 Nissan Skyline GT R Gooding and Co engine

Purchased in Yokohama, Japan in 2015, this GT-R was subjected to a sympathetic restoration at the hands of a respected Costa Rica restoration shop. The car was in good condition to begin with, as only small portions of the rockers had rust spots. The shop cleaned and rebuilt the brakes, steering, and suspension, and only cleaned and repainted components on the transmission and engine. Inside, the car was simply cleaned and detailed, necessitating only a few replacement plastic trim pieces.

When the 1973 GT-R crosses the block, Gooding & Co. predicts a final price somewhere around $275,000. If this six-figure price tag doesn’t dissuade you, make sure to head over to Gooding & Co.’s Pebble Beach auction on August 20th and 21st.

All photos courtesy of Gooding & Co. 

1972 Nissan Skyline GT R Gooding and Co side profile 1972 Nissan Skyline GT R Gooding and Co front three quarter 1972 Nissan Skyline GT R Gooding and Co badge 1972 Nissan Skyline GT R Gooding and Co front three quarter in motion 1972 Nissan Skyline GT R Gooding and Co engine 1972 Nissan Skyline GT R Gooding and Co rear three quarter 1972 Nissan Skyline GT R Gooding and Co badge 02

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Nissan Debuts Bio-Ethanol Fuel-Cell Prototype in Brazil http://www.automobilemag.com/news/nissan-debuts-fuel-cell-prototype-powered-bio-ethanol/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/nissan-debuts-fuel-cell-prototype-powered-bio-ethanol/#respond Tue, 09 Aug 2016 16:30:24 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=976376 Just in time for the Olympic Games, Nissan is testing a special type of fuel-cell vehicle on the streets of Brazil. The model, based off the NV200 van, runs completely off bio-ethanol and offers a driving range of more than 372 miles. It doesn’t work like other fuel cells which have a built-in tank for...

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Just in time for the Olympic Games, Nissan is testing a special type of fuel-cell vehicle on the streets of Brazil. The model, based off the NV200 van, runs completely off bio-ethanol and offers a driving range of more than 372 miles.

It doesn’t work like other fuel cells which have a built-in tank for storing hydrogen. Instead, the Nissan e-Bio Fuel-Cell uses bio-ethanol pumped into the vehicle to generate electricity through a Solid-Oxide Fuel Cell.

The model generates electricity by transforming bio-ethanol into hydrogen through an electrochemical reaction from a reformer and atmospheric oxygen. The electricity generated in this process powers the vehicle. Reforming ethanol into hydrogen produces some carbon dioxide, although the same is true for the way other fuel cells work. But Nissan says the process of growing plants used to produce the bio-ethanol cancels out the effects of the emissions. Bio-ethanol, mainly sourced from sugarcane and corn, is widely available in North and South America, which Nissan says is another major benefit to this fuel source.

Nissan e Bio Fuel Cell Prototype at Fueling Station

“The e-Bio Fuel-Cell offers eco-friendly transportation and creates opportunities for regional energy production…all the while supporting the existing infrastructure,” Nissan president and CEO Carlos Ghosn said in a statement.

The Nissan e-Bio Fuel-Cell offers a 30-liter tank for ethanol and a 24-kilowatt-hour battery. Given the fact that it’s just a prototype for now, its specifications are subject to change should Nissan bring it to market. Nissan says the e-Bio Fuel-Cell is the first vehicle in the world to use a solid-oxide fuel cell. Solid-oxide fuel cells use a solid, ceramic electrolyte rather than a liquid electrolyte, and Nissan says it’s highly efficient.

Source: Nissan

Nissan e Bio Fuel Cell Prototype Front Three Quarters Nissan e Bio Fuel Cell Prototype Rear Three Quarters Nissan e Bio Fuel Cell Prototype Display

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http://www.automobilemag.com/news/nissan-debuts-fuel-cell-prototype-powered-bio-ethanol/feed/ 0 Nissan e Bio Fuel Cell Prototype Display Nissan e Bio Fuel Cell Prototype at Fueling Station Nissan e Bio Fuel Cell Prototype Display Nissan e Bio Fuel Cell Prototype Display Nissan e Bio Fuel Cell Prototype Display
Nissan BladeGlider Is Now a Running Prototype http://www.automobilemag.com/news/nissan-bladeglider-now-268-hp-drift-mode/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/nissan-bladeglider-now-268-hp-drift-mode/#respond Thu, 04 Aug 2016 16:20:06 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=974594 Nissan was light on details when it first debuted its BladeGlider concept in 2013. Now the Nissan BladeGlider, while still a prototype, is a fully functional vehicle, one that will drive passengers around the streets of Brazil this month. In terms of design, the BladeGlider has evolved significantly in just two years. It’s no longer...

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Nissan was light on details when it first debuted its BladeGlider concept in 2013. Now the Nissan BladeGlider, while still a prototype, is a fully functional vehicle, one that will drive passengers around the streets of Brazil this month.

In terms of design, the BladeGlider has evolved significantly in just two years. It’s no longer shaped like a bullet, gaining new body lines that bring it closer to looking like a sports car. The prototype now has rear-hinged doors, and its two-tone color scheme looks more cohesive than in the previous version.

Inside the cabin, you’ll notice a more conventional, circular steering wheel that once again sits in the center of the dash. A center display showing critical vehicle information is surrounded on either side by two screens. The three-seater vehicle has been made with two interior color schemes – Cyber Green and Stealth Orange. Seats are made with a tactile blend of fabric and epoxy resin coating, which Nissan says should result in a grippy feel.

Nissan BladeGlider Interior Front Seat

On to the powertrain. Along with a 220-kilowatt lithium-ion battery, the vehicle has one electric 174-hp motor at each of the rear wheels. Total system output is 268 hp and 521 lb-ft of torque, and Nissan estimates the car should be able to hit 62 mph in under 5 seconds. Top speed is estimated at more than 115 mph in this all-electric vehicle.

“It’s the electric vehicle for car lovers,” Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn said in a press release.

To improve handling, a torque vectoring system controls the torque delivered to the rear wheels. Should understeer occur, it will send more torque to the outside wheel to correct the situation. Drivers can adjust the torque vectoring system with three settings: off, agile, and drift mode. The vehicle isn’t too heavy or too light, with a weight of around 2,866 pounds.

Nissan is bringing two BladeGliders to Rio de Janeiro this month just in time for the Olympic Games. One is just for show, and the other will be available for media ridealongs.

During the original BladeGlider’s debut in 2013, Nissan bosses said the concept hinted at a future production version. Perhaps this updated concept signals Nissan is still moving in that direction. But we don’t know for sure whether or not it will come to dealerships.

Watch the video at the bottom of the post for a closer look.

Source: Nissan

Nissan BladeGlider Side Close Up Nissan BladeGlider Seats Nissan BladeGlider Rear Nissan BladeGlider Rear Three Quarters Nissan BladeGlider Interior Nissan BladeGlider Front Wheel Nissan BladeGlider Front View Nissan BladeGlider Front View Doors Open Nissan BladeGlider Doors Open Nissan BladeGlider Taillight Nissan BladeGlider Side Nissan BladeGlider Side View Nissan BladeGlider

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http://www.automobilemag.com/news/nissan-bladeglider-now-268-hp-drift-mode/feed/ 0 Nissan BladeGlider Now Has 268 HP and a Drift Mode - Automobile Nissan was light on details when it first debuted its BladeGlider concept in 2013. Now the Nissan BladeGlider, while still a prototype, is a fully functional vehicle, one that will drive passengers around the streets of Brazil this month. In terms of design, the BladeGlider has evolved significantly nissan bladeglider Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider Interior Front Seat Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider Nissan BladeGlider
2017 Nissan Armada First Drive http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-armada-first-drive/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-armada-first-drive/#respond Wed, 03 Aug 2016 10:00:53 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=972465 Though absent from the U.S. for decades, the Nissan Patrol has, like the Toyota Land Cruiser, been lauded for its work in far-flung deserts and nasty jungles. It first made its return to the U.S. five years ago as the 2011 Infiniti QX56 (now QX80), and the Patrol now also serves as the base for...

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Though absent from the U.S. for decades, the Nissan Patrol has, like the Toyota Land Cruiser, been lauded for its work in far-flung deserts and nasty jungles. It first made its return to the U.S. five years ago as the 2011 Infiniti QX56 (now QX80), and the Patrol now also serves as the base for the 2017 Nissan Armada.

The first-generation Armada was based on the platform of the Titan pickup. For the second-gen Armada, Nissan put all its big SUV eggs in one basket: the Patrol. Titan production stays in Canton, Mississippi, while all the big SUVs will be built in Kyushu, Japan.

In fact, the new Armada and QX80 have the same door skins, rear fenders, and roof. The Armada and Patrol share even more; the differences are minute enough to be bar bets at a Nissan convention.

2017 Nissan Armada rear three quarter in motion 01

Out front is Nissan’s so-called “V-motion” grille, LED/halogen headlamps, and the rugged bits one expects at the front of a big SUV even if its biggest obstacle will be a concrete parking stop at Nordstrom. On the front fenders are vented scoops Nissan is quick to point out are functional as engine air intakes—as they are on the QX80—and aft of there you’ll know the design from Infiniti. Nissan redid the rear liftgate and bumper to differentiate the two, helping make them fraternal instead of identical twins.

Take a step back, and you find the exterior shape of the Armada is about what you’d expect going head to head with the likes of Chevrolet’s Tahoe, Ford’s Expedition, and Toyota’s Sequoia. It’s nothing you’re likely to fall in love with, but the Armada looks the (masculine) part of taking care of business, hauling as many as seven kids or luggage, tall potted plants, or all that stuff from Costco.

You’ll also be excused for asking why anyone would buy the Armada versus the QX80. According to Nissan, the pair isn’t often cross-shopped; Nissan people look at Armadas, and Infiniti people shop the QX80, a la Chevy Tahoe and GMC Yukon or Ford Expedition and Lincoln Navigator.

2017 Nissan Armada cabin 01

Just as they are twins outside, the Armada and QX80 share interior design, right down to stitch patterns and steering-wheel buttons. That is not a condemnation. The overall design is attractive, and the navi/info screen sits high, just below the sight line and reasonably well-placed against glare. There’s a fair old sea of buttons below that, but they are separated by function: navi at the top, audio in the middle, heater/air below. It isn’t the most intuitive of layouts, but it works once you’ve had a bit of time with it.

Aft of that, the seats do the things you expect in a big SUV. Second- and third-row seats are split 60/40 and can be lowered for a flat load floor. Then there are the seats-up and seats-folded permutations you expect so you could, for instance, carry three kids and that new flat-screen TV.

Optionally you can get a pair of captain’s chairs for the second row flanking a center console that can, with some tools, be removed. Regardless of seat arrangements in the middle row, Nissan claims best-in-class headroom and legroom for that area.

2017 Nissan Armada cabin 02 2017 Nissan Armada center stack 2017 Nissan Armada rear seat 2017 Nissan Armada rear seats

Nissan points out the Armada has standard eight-passenger seating, and there are enough cushions for that many backsides. The step-up-and-in for the seats at the four doors is easily done, and once there you could have at least 6-footers in those five spots with comfort. Not surprisingly, the “way back” third row is best left for kids and emergencies.

While the Armadas come from Japan, their powerplants are U.S. made, shared with the Titan pickups. Called the Endurance V-8, it has 5.6 liters, 32 valves, and, among other features, direct injection and a compression-ratio increase from 9.8:1 to 11.2:1 compared to its Armada predecessor. Horsepower takes a nice jump from 317 to 390 at 5,800 rpm, torque a more modest increase from 385 lb-ft to 394 at 4,000 rpm. The V-8 drinks from a 26-gallon tank, and mileage numbers for 2WD are 14/19/16 mpg city/highway/combined, while 4WD is 1 mpg less per cycle.

Speeds for the automatic transmission climb from five to seven. Naturally there will be two- and four-wheel-drive versions, the latter with Auto/2WD/4H/4LO possibilities; as much as 50 percent of the power can be pumped forward under nasty conditions. Regardless of which drive system you choose, the Armada’s towing capacity is 8,500 pounds, another best in class.

2017 Nissan Armada side profile in motion 01

Chassis specs include double A-arm suspensions front and rear with twin-tube shocks. Steering is by rack and pinion. Nissan claims more rigidity for this body-on-frame design compared to the last Armada. Overall the two are roughly the same size, but the 2017 model weighs in at 5,576 pounds and up, at least 300 pounds heavier.

Being a modern SUV, the Armada comes with the expected standard features: navigation system, Bose sound system, Bluetooth phone, etc. Depending on the model, you can add the likes of 7-inch screens in back of the front headrests, forward emergency braking, blind-spot warning … you know the drill.

Typical of a big SUV, you sort of clamber into the Armada’s driver seat. This is a near-3-ton machine, and there’s nothing delicate about it. Yet like most big SUVs these days, it is anything but a beast. You do love such features as the surround-view monitor and backup collision intervention to get a sense of your surroundings.

2017 Nissan Armada front end 02

Steering effort belies the vehicle’s size as you maneuver through traffic. Highway ride is smooth. On rougher secondary roads, the suspension doesn’t so much eliminate rough patches as round them off and smooth them. Yes, it handles like the truck it is, but these days that’s an acceptable condition, not the put-down it once was.

We had a chance to test the Armada’s Patrol roots at, of all places, Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca. Hard to say how many Armadas are taken off-road, and there isn’t a specific option package for that. You can see in the photos that it can dramatically lift its outside wheel, like a dog at the first bush on its afternoon walk, so it can maneuver over dips and steep rises.

The tab for all this? We don’t really know. Nissan has told us the starting price will be $45,395. They will flesh out pricing for two- or four-wheel drive and the SV, SL and Platinum packages in mid-August when deliveries begin.

2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 03

2017 Nissan Armada Specifications

On Sale: Now
Price: $45,395 (base) (est)
Engine: 5.6L DOHC 32-valve V-8/390 hp @ 5,800 rpm, 394 lb-ft @ 4,000 rpm
Transmission: 7-speed automatic
Layout: 4-door, 8-passenger, front-engine, AWD SUV
EPA Mileage: 13/18mpg (city/hwy) (est)
L x W x H: 208.9 in x 79.9 in x 75.8 in
Wheelbase: 121.1 in
Weight: 5,963 lbs
0-60 MPH: N/A
Top Speed: N/A
2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter in motion 06 2017 Nissan Armada rear three quarter in motion 02 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 09 2017 Nissan Armada tail lamp and badge 2017 Nissan Armada side profile 02 2017 Nissan Armada vent and badge 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 10 2017 Nissan Armada rear three quarter 02 2017 Nissan Armada rear three quarter 03 2017 Nissan Armada side profile 01 2017 Nissan Armada lineup 2017 Nissan Armada wheel 2017 Nissan Armada headlamp 2017 Nissan Armada shifter and menu selection knob 2017 Nissan Armada rear three quarter 01 2017 Nissan Armada rear end 2017 Nissan Armada instrument panel 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter in motion 05 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter in motion 04 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter in motion 02 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter in motion 01 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 08 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 07 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 05 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 04 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 03 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 02 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 01 2017 Nissan Armada front end 03 2017 Nissan Armada front end 01 2017 Nissan Armada engine 2017 Nissan Armada wheels 2017 Nissan Armada steering wheel 2017 Nissan Armada side 1 2017 Nissan Armada rear three quarter 2 2017 Nissan Armada rear three quarter 02 1 2017 Nissan Armada rear interior seats 2017 Nissan Armada rear cargo 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 1 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter in motion 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter in motion 04 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter in motion 03 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter in motion 02 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 04 1 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 03 2 2017 Nissan Armada front three quarter 02 2 2017 Nissan Armada front interior seats 2017 Nissan Armada front end 1 2017 Nissan Armada front end in motion 2017 Nissan Armada front end 02

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2017 Nissan Titan Single Cab Revealed in Regular and XD Configuration http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-titan-single-cab-revealed-regular-xd-configuration/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-titan-single-cab-revealed-regular-xd-configuration/#respond Tue, 26 Jul 2016 19:13:03 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=970843 Looking to capture truck buyers and corporate fleets who use their pickups primarily as work tools, Nissan unveiled a two-door “single cab” configuration of its large Titan pickup truck. Initially, the redesigned Titan was only available in four-door crew cab form. Nissan claims this is the first two-door Titan ever offered, and is the second...

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Looking to capture truck buyers and corporate fleets who use their pickups primarily as work tools, Nissan unveiled a two-door “single cab” configuration of its large Titan pickup truck.

Initially, the redesigned Titan was only available in four-door crew cab form. Nissan claims this is the first two-door Titan ever offered, and is the second of three total Titan cab configurations, including the aforementioned Crew Cab and an upcoming “King Cab,” what some other trucks call an extended cab.

2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front three quarter 02

The two-door Titan is offered with a choice of two powertrains, including the 5.0-liter Cummins turbodiesel V-8 in XD trim and the tried-and-true 5.6-liter V-8 “Endurance” engine. The 5.0-liter in the XD is a potent stump-puller, with 310 hp and a whopping 555 lb-ft of torque. If you opt for the 5.6-liter V-8, power is an impressive 390 hp and 394 lb-ft of torque. Don’t expect to grab a diesel Single Cab Titan at launch, however; the 5.6-liter will be the first engine offered. According to Nissan, a new V-6 powertrain will be available in the future.

2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab rear three quarter

While the four-door Titan and Titan XD wear 5.5 and 6.5-foot beds respectively, each Single Cab truck features an 8.0-foot bed as standard.

Each Single Cab Titan arrives in either regular or heavy-duty XD trim, with different equipment levels for each truck. Rear- and four-wheel-drive versions are available.

Look for more information on the Titan Single Cab pricing later this year. The Single Cab trucks will arrive at dealerships in late fall.

2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab front end 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab fornt three quarters 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab front three quarter 02 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab front three quarter 03 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab front three quarter 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab rear three quarter 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab side 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab rear three quarters 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab rear taillight 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab interior 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab instrument cluster 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab grille 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab front top view 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab engine 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab cup holders 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab center stack 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab center console storage 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab badge 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab auxiliary gauges 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab wheels 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab side profile 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab side mirror 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab rear three quarter 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab interior seats 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab interior details 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front three quarter 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front three quarter in motion 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front three quarter 02 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front interior seats 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front grille 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front interior 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab center stack 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab climate controls 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab engine cover 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab engine 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front end in motion 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front end 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab center console storage 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab center console arm rest 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab badge 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front side 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear

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http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-titan-single-cab-revealed-regular-xd-configuration/feed/ 0 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front three quarter 02 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab rear three quarter 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear 2017 Nissan Titan XD S Single Cab and Nissan Titan SV Single Cab front rear
2017 Nissan Pathfinder: Seven Things to Know http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-pathfinder-seven-things-know/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-pathfinder-seven-things-know/#respond Tue, 12 Jul 2016 10:00:54 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=965567 Nissan is calling this the “Year of the Truck,” as it has plans for 85 percent of its trucks to be all-new by the end of 2016. Part of that strategy is also upgrading and modernizing its SUVs, and the Pathfinder was ripe for an update. The 2017 Nissan Pathfinder gets a fairly comprehensive refresh,...

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Nissan is calling this the “Year of the Truck,” as it has plans for 85 percent of its trucks to be all-new by the end of 2016. Part of that strategy is also upgrading and modernizing its SUVs, and the Pathfinder was ripe for an update. The 2017 Nissan Pathfinder gets a fairly comprehensive refresh, following its full redesign for the 2013 model year. For the most part, it’s the soft-roading family SUV the market has clearly demonstrated it prefers to the tougher body-on-frame SUV of old, but there are a few key upgrades that make the new Pathfinder both more capable and more appealing.

  1. Over 50 Percent of the Parts in the 2017 3.5-Liter V-6 Are New
    Updates to the Pathfinder’s VQ-series mill, including changes to the pistons and intake manifold as well as a new direct-injection system, yield roughly 10 percent more power and torque, bringing output up to 284 hp and 259 lb-ft of torque. Mirror-bore cylinder coating replaces the cast iron coating on the old engine, cutting engine weight by roughly three pounds and reducing friction. A Nissan spokesperson also told AUTOMOBILE that any model currently using a VQ-series V6, such as the Maxima, Murano, and 370Z, will receive the same updates down the line. Each vehicle can also expect a “ballpark” 10 percent bump in output.
  1. Towing Capacity Climbs to 6,000 Pounds
    This 1,000-lb upgrade in utility comes courtesy of the new engine, improvements to the Xtronic continuously variable transmission, and reinforcements of the body near the trailer hitch. That number bests every SUV in its class, short of the V-8-powered Dodge Durango, which can tow as much as 7,400 pounds.
2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 16 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 15 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter in motion 04 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter in motion 03 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear taillight 2017 Nissan Pathfinder grille 2017 Nissan Pathfinder headlamp 1
  1. Real-World Fuel Economy is Better Than the EPA’s
    The window sticker will continue to read as much as 20/27/22 mph city/highway/combined for rear-wheel-drive models. However, Nissan mentioned that the 2017 Pathfinder is more efficient than before, and that the carryover ratings are a result of changes to way EPA calculates efficiency figures.
  1. Nissan Connect Services Now Available.
    Nissan Connect becomes available on the Pathfinder with Premium Plus package on the SL trim and standard on Platinum. The software includes compatibility with a smartphone app that allows you to remote start the vehicle, among other functions. The system also can automatically call emergency services in the event of a crash and enables you to contact a live agent to help search for local businesses. The system comes with 6 months of free service on equipped models and requires subscription afterward. Sirius XM, on the other hand, comes with three months of radio and three years of and traffic data on equipped models.

2017 Nissan Pathfinder center console

  1. New Materials Inside
    A revised cloth interior comes with the Pathfinder S and SV. SL and Platinum models come with updated finishes including a fairly convincing faux-wood grain. The aluminum-look finish, on the other hand, still looks and feels like plastic. Gotta save something for the Infiniti, after all.
  1. Power Liftgate Becomes Motion-Activated
    The Pathfinder’s new liftgate can be operated with a kick under the rear bumper while the fob is in your pocket. The system also allows you to program different heights for the liftgate by holding the “close” button while the liftgate is in the desired position. We observed that the technology isn’t quite intuitive, or perhaps that it’s at least a little too smart for its own good. The liftgate won’t actually open until you step back a step or two, ostensibly to avoid being hit by it.

2017 Nissan Pathfinder hands free liftgate

  1. Stiffer Suspension Addresses Handling Concerns
    There is an impressive list of suspension upgrades for the 2017 Nissan Pathfinder, largely addressing its floaty and slightly messy handling. Nissan says body control and ride are improved as a result of stiffer front and rear shocks, 25-percent higher spring rates for the rebound springs in the rear, and added rebound springs for the front struts. Thanks to an 11 percent quicker steering ratio, the result of a new valve design for the hydraulic-electric steering system, Nissan says the SUV corners more confidently as well.
2017 Nissan Pathfinder side in motion 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarters 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 18 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 17 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 20 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear end in motion 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear side in motion 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear side in motion 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 02 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter in motion 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 04 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 2017 Nissan Pathfinder wheels 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarters 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarters 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front side in motion 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end on rocks 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end downhill 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front downhill 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end 02 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder badge 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder badge 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end

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25 Future Cars You Won’t Want to Miss http://www.automobilemag.com/news/future-cars-suvs-2016/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/future-cars-suvs-2016/#respond Mon, 11 Jul 2016 14:40:26 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=961387 Novelist C.S. Lewis described the future as “something which everyone reaches at the rate of 60 minutes an hour, whatever he does, whoever he is.” Pardon us for feeling as though the automobile’s evolution is occurring even quicker, from another forthcoming crop of intriguing production cars to rapidly shifting attitudes about how to address inner-city...

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Novelist C.S. Lewis described the future as “something which everyone reaches at the rate of 60 minutes an hour, whatever he does, whoever he is.” Pardon us for feeling as though the automobile’s evolution is occurring even quicker, from another forthcoming crop of intriguing production cars to rapidly shifting attitudes about how to address inner-city transportation and how to restore collectible classic cars. There’s no turning back.

Aston Martin Vantage

Aston Martin Vantage

What we know 
This will be one of the first Aston Martins to make use of a Mercedes-Benz engine, a benefit of the partnership between the two companies. Mercedes-AMG will build a “bespoke V-8” for the British sports car, almost certainly a version of its 4.0-liter twin-turbo mill. The Vantage should look similar to the DB10 that Aston Martin created for the James Bond film “Spectre,” with an aluminum-intensive body and liberal use of carbon fiber to help keep weight down. Its interior will be far more fashionable than the current car’s, and purists will appreciate that Aston is planning to offer an optional manual transmission alongside the dual-clutch automatic most buyers will opt for.

Why it matters
Aston Martin might have an amazing lineup of fantastic, sporty cars, but it needs a true sports car. And though today’s Vantage is fun, it doesn’t quite fill that hole. The next one will. And while purists might momentarily whine about the AMG-sourced engine, they’ll stop when they see the performance figures that come from using a “hot V” turbocharged V-8 from one of the world’s best engine builders.

Where it could go wrong
Aston Martin is well aware that it can’t step on the character of its cars, but how well will that work when it starts using Benz bits? For example, the sound of an Aston Martin is crucial to the driving experience; will the Vantage sound any more special than, say, a Mercedes-AMG GT S? We’ll see.

When to expect it
By 2020

Aston Martin DBX

Aston Martin DBX

What we know
The DBX breaks tradition to become the brand’s first SUV (ahem, high-riding vehicle) as well as the first Aston to use all-wheel drive. You’ll likely be able to choose between a twin-turbo V-8, a V-12 of sorts, or an all-electric drivetrain that uses lithium-sulfur battery cells to power four electric motors. Rumors suggest the EV model will have 800 hp and a range of about 200 miles. The whole DBX lineup will have classic, handsome Aston proportions propped up by a lifted suspension and big wheels. Expect four doors, not two like you see here, and the DBX’s swoopy body should wrap around a seriously swanky interior with seating for four and a lot more space than, say, the Rapide sedan.

Why it matters
Heretical as an Aston Martin SUV might seem, Porsche’s business model of paying for traditional fan favorites with high-profit crossovers, such as the Cayenne and Macan, is proven. Aston Martin has been bankrupt seven times in its 103-year history, and CEO Andy Palmer is committed to making sure that stops. The DBX should help. Although adding electric powertrains to the mix might seem a bit risky, it’s necessary if Aston wants to meet emissions targets and still offer its trademark V-12 engines.

Where it could go wrong
Fiddling with the tradition of a storied brand such as Aston Martin is tricky. A crossover will certainly bring about a new, younger, and more diverse customer base, but might Aston also distance itself from its established clients? Aston would be wise to stay close to its core values of exclusivity, sophisticated English luxury, and thrilling performance.

When to expect it
By 2018

Audi R6

Audi R6

What we know
The gap between TT and R8 remains wide open. Audi has repeatedly said that an entry-level V-8-powered R8 isn’t in the cards, so management instead is reportedly considering a new and relatively affordable mid-engine sports car earmarked for 2021. It would use the same building blocks as the next-generation Porsche Cayman and be powered by an all-new, all-aluminum 2.5-liter inline-five that could be bookended by a more basic inline-four and a bigger V-6. Power would range between 250 hp and 350 hp, and all-wheel drive would be optional. If the R6 does indeed come to fruition, a no-frills, 400-hp R6 Plus model with a manual transmission could follow a few years later.

Why it matters
Before twinning today’s R8 with the Lamborghini Huracán, Audi thought about replacing the R8 with a mid-engine 911 fighter powered by a tri-turbo five-cylinder engine good for 500 hp. Previous Audi R&D head Ulrich Hackenberg and Porsche R&D head Wolfgang Hatz weren’t very friendly at the time, which was part of the reason why that didn’t happen. But current leadership in Ingolstadt and Zuffenhausen are much chummier and in favor of extensive cooperation.

Where it could go wrong
As much as enthusiasts the world over would welcome a car like the R6, sports car sales are on the decline. VW Group’s ongoing financial trauma could also mean that funds currently allocated toward brand-shaping niche models might have to be diverted to produce more low-emission, bread-and-butter cars. Audi has postponed all additional projects by one year to evaluate its options, and the R6 could end up a cost-cutting casualty.

When to expect it
By 2021

Bentley Anaga

Bentley Anaga

What we know
Bentley doesn’t want just one crossover when it thinks it can sell two. While the Bentayga is a high-end, spacious, range-topping model (with a Speed variant reportedly on the way), there’s room for a so-called Baby Bentayga below it. To be built on Volkswagen Group’s MSB modular platform that will be used for the next-gen Audi Q5, the car we’re calling Anaga will be to the big Bentayga what the Porsche Macan is to the Cayenne. Unlike the Bentayga, the smaller model would not be able to fit (or justify) a 12-cylinder engine, so expect turbocharged six- or eight-cylinder engines underhood. As far as design, look for the familiar Bentley face seen on everything from the Continental GT to the Bentayga but squeezed onto a smaller body.

Why it matters
While the big Bentayga is the brand’s pinnacle model, its exorbitant price tag is so far out of reach that it won’t bring in many new customers. A smaller, more affordable Bentley crossover would presumably boost sales further and help fund the rest of the company’s lineup in the process.

Where it could go wrong
Bentley officials have sent mixed messages about whether they want to launch a smaller crossover, and doing so could cheapen or water down the brand’s cachet. Plus, a Baby Bentayga would face stiff competition from all sides: Audi Q5 and Porsche Macan internally, plus newcomers such as Jaguar’s F-Pace.

When to expect it
By 2020

BMW 9 Series

BMW 9 Series

What we know
The 9 Series will be BMW’s answer to the Mercedes-Maybach S600. With a starting price of $170,000, BMW’s halo car should have styling not far from the Vision Future Luxury Concept shown here. Based off a stretched version of the new 7 Series chassis, the 9 Series will use a lot of carbon fiber to reduce weight. The sedan will likely be available with a twin-turbocharged V-8, a V-12 from Rolls-Royce tuned to BMW’s specs, and an all-new hybrid powertrain that pairs electric motors with a turbocharged inline-six.

Why it matters
BMWs of late have felt less and less special, but maybe the 9 Series will turn things around. Actually, it doesn’t have much choice in the matter; it needs to be engaging and unique to compete with the S-Class. It’s expected to be a high-tech tour de force with serious semi-autonomous capabilities and a lavishly appointed interior.

Where it could go wrong
For BMW to be successful with this one, it will have to compete head to head with the uber-luxurious S600 and also on some level with the Rolls-Royce Phantom replacement with which it will share some components. The 9 Series will also need to look and feel like a fully fledged flagship, which BMW hasn’t had for some time now. If BMW can’t create something truly special, it will fail.

When to expect it
Beginning of 2020.

Bugatti Chiron Grand Sport

Bugatti Chiron Grand Sport

What we know
We expect the Chiron’s life cycle to mirror the Veyron’s, which means more impressive and powerful variants are coming, such as a convertible Chiron Grand Sport. While the Chiron’s base performance is staggering, there is definitely room to grow. Its 8.0-liter quad-turbocharged W-16 engine will likely jump from 1,500 hp to an astounding 1,700 hp or more when bolted into the stripped-down Chiron Super Sport, a car that will likely breach the 275-mph mark. An open-air Grand Sport Vitesse should follow soon after.

Why it matters
The Veyron reset the collective consciousness of what we considered to be “high performance,” and the Chiron continues to carry the 250-mph torch for the brand. Not only can Bugatti achieve such mind-boggling performance, it does so with oversight from a company as large and diverse as Volkswagen Group.

Where it could go wrong
VW’s diesel scandal will rear its soot-covered head, and though we don’t yet know its full financial implications, expect cost-cutting to affect niche products such as this. If VW Group deems the program fun but frivolous, the Chiron line might end at the standard model.

When to expect it
The Chiron Grand Sport should arrive around 2019, with the Super Sport and Grand Sport Vitesse following in 2020 and 2021, respectively.

Cadillac XT7

Cadillac XT7

What we know
General Motors has a new Chi platform for its medium and large crossovers: The Cadillac XT5 is on the smaller Chi, with the new XT7 on the stretched, larger Chi. The three-row XT7 will come with Escalade-like levels of luxury and bling on a more comfortable unibody platform and in a size more manageable for urban parking garages. It will look a lot like a longer version of the XT5. Expect front-wheel drive, optional all-wheel drive, and a selection of six-cylinder engines, including Cadillac’s signature twin-turbo 3.0-liter V-6.

Why it matters
Cadillac’s SUV lineup is much smaller than those of BMW and Mercedes-Benz, relying only on Escalade and the XT5, which replaced the recently deceased SRX. Large premium crossovers are fast-selling moneymakers, and Cadillac will finally be able to catch up and keep sales from going to other luxury brands as the crossover market gets hotter and hotter.
Where it could go wrong
The usual problems when a key product such as this shares its platform with seven or eight other models, all priced and positioned lower than the XT7. And just as timing is everything in comedy, so too is it in new auto models. Will the economy keep improving over the next two years? Will the luxury market keep growing? What happens if oil prices climb again?

When to expect it
By the end of 2017

Ford Bronco

Ford Bronco

What we know
Ford has confirmed it will build two new vehicles at the Michigan factory where the Focus and C-Max are assembled. Sources say one is almost guaranteed to be the Ranger, Ford’s midsize pickup truck that’s already on sale overseas. A second vehicle will join the plant in 2020, and a modern-day Bronco makes a lot of sense as that vehicle. It would essentially be Ford’s version of the Jeep Wrangler Unlimited, built off the Ranger platform, underpinned by a tough suspension, and sporting a boxy, retro look. Think of it as the pickup truck for people who don’t actually need an open cargo bed but want the ground clearance and towing ability a more capable, body-on-frame SUV would provide.

Why it matters
The Bronco would give Ford a credible competitor to the beloved Jeep Wrangler. Although it’s unclear whether the Bronco’s chops could really match those of the Jeep, a hardcore variant along the lines of the F-150 Raptor could be developed to help boost its go-anywhere appeal and highlight its roots in off-road racing.

Where it could go wrong
Is there a business case for launching what would likely be a low-volume SUV when Ford already sells hundreds of thousands of pedestrian crossovers here? In addition, if gas prices suddenly spike, the market for vehicles like a Bronco could dry up. Ford has long expressed skepticism about selling pickups smaller than the F-150 in the U.S., despite its decision to reboot the Ranger. Trying to push through another body-on-frame offering below the F-150 won’t be easy.

When to expect it
No sooner than 2020 about two years after Ranger production would begin in the U.S.

Kia Stinger coupe

Kia Stinger coupe

What we know
The Kia GT4 Stinger concept shown in 2014 had a rear-wheel-drive platform, an aggressive design, a six-speed manual transmission, and a 315-hp turbocharged engine. We haven’t seen much since, but we’re sure the Stinger is coming. The automaker has already trademarked the Stinger name in the U.S.; GT4 is off the table due to an existing trademark. The production model will probably use a turbo-four engine putting out 250 to 300 hp, and its rear-wheel-drive platform would be borrowed from parent company Hyundai. A four-door Stinger sport sedan will hopefully precede a two-door sports car.

Why it matters
First, Kia can’t let corporate sibling Genesis have all the fun with its planned BMW 3 Series-rivaling sport sedan. Second, a purebred, two-door sports car would help bolster Kia’s fun character, complementing its existing SX Turbo models. Finally, offering a sports car would have a halo effect on the rest of the Kia lineup, hopefully persuading more buyers to consider the brand.

Where it could go wrong
Suspension tuning has not historically been one of Kia’s strong points, though the company has made big strides in past years and hired a former BMW engineer to help dial in new models. It’s going to be tough to get executives to continue to support a costly rear-wheel-drive platform for a small-batch sports car.

When to expect it
In the next year.

Jeep Comanche

Jeep Comanche

What we know
The Jeep pickup is coming back. Good thing, too, seeing how it perfectly encapsulates the brand’s “go anywhere, do anything” attitude. Underpinnings will come from the soon-to-debut all-new Wrangler. Like the Wrangler, the Comanche will swap steel bodywork for lighter aluminum panels and be powered by a V-6 engine that will bolt to either a six-speed manual transmission or an eight-speed automatic.

Why it matters
It’s the first production Jeep pickup in a quarter century; fans have been clamoring for a reboot since the Comanche went away in the early ’90s. Jeep has become one of the most thriving brands in the FCA family, and the all-new Comanche definitely has the potential to become another best-seller overnight.

Where it could go wrong
It’s a Jeep, and it’s a pickup truck—seems like a recipe for success. Jeep has dominated in sales, and enthusiasts haven’t shut up about the truck since the company announced it would be built. But will they open their wallets when it finally arrives?

When to expect it
In 2020.

Genesis G60

Genesis G60

What we know
The first luxury sports coupe from Hyundai’s Genesis sub-brand will be a two-door version of the eventual G70 sedan, likely dubbed G60. Expect a graceful silhouette as well as a sporty, driver-centric cabin with a focus on innovative infotainment technology. Both rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive will be available, as will two engines: a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with about 240 hp and a 3.8-liter V-6 making just north of 300 hp, both bolted to eight-speed automatic transmissions. A hybrid and a performance model with a twin-turbo V-6 are expected as well.
Why it matters
To legitimize its newly minted Genesis brand, Hyundai must compete against the BMW 3 Series and the Mercedes-Benz C-Class. Key design talents Peter Schreyer and Luc Donckerwolke, both poached from German companies, give Genesis a fighting chance, as do rear-wheel-drive platforms that won’t be shared with Hyundai’s mainstream fleet. Genesis just might have what it takes.

Where it could go wrong
Great build quality, plentiful tech, and great warranties only go so far. People have a hard time paying premium prices for cars from commodity brands such as Hyundai. Genesis prices need to undercut German rivals to get on shopping lists, but its cars can’t be billed as anything but legitimate luxury. Maintaining a healthy distance from its humble Hyundai roots is essential.

When to expect it
In 2017

Dodge Barracuda

Dodge Barracuda

What we know
When the third-generation Plymouth Barracuda debuted for the 1970 model year, it shared its platform with the then-new-to-the-market Dodge Challenger. But the ’Cuda—available as a coupe as well as a convertible—was shorter and lighter than the Challenger and had its own distinct styling. The song remains much the same for the all-new, modern-era Barracuda, now a convertible-only model wearing a Dodge badge. Though it will share much of its components and powertrains with the all-new Challenger, including the platform plucked from the Alfa Romeo Giulia, it will be shorter and wear its own sheetmetal.

Why it matters
Building more cars on the Alfa Romeo Guilia platform means variety at a relatively low cost and allows niche products like the ’Cuda to actually come to life. One more model on the new Alfa platform is good for enthusiasts, for Alfa, and for FCA, and it means Dodge can take the ponycar fight directly to Chevy and Ford.

Where it could go wrong
FCA’s product plans have been fluid as of late, with CEO Sergio Marchionne aggressively seeking a bigger, healthier automaker to be FCA’s partner. Even if he succeeds, the new partner will direct its attention toward Jeep and Ram, not Dodge, and the two-model ponycar plan might become the one-model plan to save money.

When to expect it
Model year 2019

Dodge Challenger

Dodge Challenger

What we know
Even when the new-age Challenger launched eight years ago, it was a larger, less exciting car than its Chevrolet Camaro and Ford Mustang foils. Both of those cars were overhauled recently, but the Challenger has yet to receive a major update. That will change with the smaller, lighter, all-new Challenger, which will share a rear-wheel-drive platform with the Alfa Romeo Giulia and continue to offer V-6 and Hemi V-8 options. And, yes, we expect to see a supercharged Hellcat model putting out at least 750 hp.

Why it matters
Dodge is trying to play up its muscle-car image by further developing models such as the Challenger, the Charger, and the coming Barracuda. The plan is for Dodge to be the all-American, value-priced alternative to Alfa Romeo, which is targeting BMW. The Alfa-Dodge relationship is key to the future of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, and the Challenger is its poster car. A nimbler, better-handling model should compete well with its Camaro and Mustang ponycar rivals.

Where it could go wrong
FCA has delayed the launch of the Alfa Giulia, and while Marchionne says the issues are related to the model itself and not its platform, we wonder whether the new Challenger will be delayed as well. Also potentially affecting the Challenger’s future are the looming 2025 Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards. With Jeep and Ram accounting for some 62 percent of FCA’s U.S. sales, Marchionne might have some hard product decisions ahead.

When to expect it
Model year 2019

Lexus LC F

Lexus LC F

What we know
Lexus has promised nothing wearing the F badge will have an engine smaller than a V-8, so look for the same naturally aspirated 5.0-liter V-8 from the LC 500 tuned toward the 500-hp mark. If the LC 500’s 10-speed automatic proves to be better for smoothness than performance, Lexus will probably swap in an eight-speed automatic. Expect a torque-vectoring system, beefed-up brakes, lightweight wheels, more aggressive aerodynamics, a rear diffuser, and quad exhaust outlets.

Why it matters
While the beautiful LC 500 and innovative LC 500h hybrid help flesh out the Lexus lineup, the F stable needs a halo car that’s more impressive than the RC F. It will get just that with the LC F, a desirable car with the design, cachet, and price to bring the performance nameplate to the next level.

Where it could go wrong
The LC 500 and its platform are tuned for luxury-car duties, meaning an LC F might be more of a symbolic gesture than an actual foray into competitive performance. It’s also not clear if there are still enough buyers willing to shell out $100,000-plus for a Lexus that doesn’t totally fall in line with the brand’s hallmarks.

When to expect it
Not before 2019

Lotus Exalt

Lotus Exalt

What we know
Lotus CEO Jean-Marc Gales is convinced the automaker can build a lightweight, sporty CUV without shaming its name. It’s a departure from the brand’s ethos, but we thought the same thing when Porsche’s Cayenne launched more than a decade ago—and now it’s Porsche’s best-seller. Four lightweight Evora seats (claimed by Lotus to save 44 pounds over typical SUV seats), an aluminum chassis, and composite body panels will offset its curb weight, and the supercharged 3.5-liter V-6 engine from the Evora 400 would be a great fit here. The car we’re calling Exalt will be built with the brand’s Chinese partner, Goldstar Heavy Industrial, and will be sold in China before making its way here.

Why it matters
Lotus isn’t exactly a healthy brand, but that isn’t stopping it from aiming high, with a goal of selling 10,000 vehicles worldwide by decade’s end. That’s a lot of niche two-door sports cars to move. A more practical vehicle that could help Lotus turn the tide on the sales side would put much-needed funds in the coffer to build more of the feather-light sports cars we love.

Where it could go wrong
Just because Lotus believes people will buy a low-volume, lightweight crossover with a Lotus badge doesn’t make it true. Add to that the cash and development time needed to build such a vehicle—and the broken promises of the brand’s previous concepts—and you realize you shouldn’t start holding your breath anytime soon.

When to expect it
Production could start in 2019

Mazda RX 9

Mazda RX-9

What we know
Rotary fans and sports car lovers alike have been waiting for the RX-7’s return since the U.S.-spec car went away in 1995. The RX-Vision concept shown at the 2015 Tokyo auto show gives the faithful new hope. Mazda CEO Masamichi Kogai says a production RX sports car could be based on the Miata’s platform, claiming the roadster’s chassis is “close to perfection” for such a task. Engineers would lengthen and stiffen the chassis to better cope with the higher horsepower a turbocharged rotary engine would provide—about 400 hp. Expect significantly lower curb weight and cost than the standard F-Type, 911, or Corvette.

Why it matters
Mazda is a brand that builds sporty cars for those who still care about the driving experience. The rotary engine plays large in the automaker’s legend, and although the RX-8 tried its best to succeed the RX-7, its frumpy styling made the rotary’s key shortcomings (poor low-end torque, worse fuel economy) even tougher to swallow. The return of a true RX-7 as an affordable halo car would give inspiration to Mazda’s entire lineup and solidify the brand’s position as a maker of enthusiast cars.

Where it could go wrong
The RX-7 might have been fast, but it wasn’t cheap; the last-gen RX-7 was more expensive than a base Corvette. Bring the new car in at too high a price point, and Mazda risks alienating its core market. At the same time, Mazda must prove that it’s capable of producing a top-tier sports car that can take on the best in the business, and do it with a new, more efficient rotary engine that has enough power to compete.

When to expect it
2020, we hope.

Mercedes Benz A Class

Mercedes-Benz A-Class

What we know
The youth-oriented CLA-Class hasn’t done as well as the C- or E-Class, whereas the competitive Audi A3 is one of Audi’s best-selling cars. So Benz will add an all-new A-Class sedan to its North American lineup, with the CLA presumably living on alongside it. The A-Class will be a more spacious, more upright, front- or all-wheel-drive sedan in the A3’s mold. Picture it as a smaller C-Class, aping the styling cues of the car you see here. We expect a base 2.0-liter turbo-four engine with 208 hp as well as a 375-hp AMG version.

Why it matters
Entry-level luxury models are designed to snare upwardly mobile first-timers to the brand in an effort to make lifelong customers out of them. When the Audi A3 launched, it highlighted the CLA’s lack of rear-seat space, an important consideration for the younger set who likes to have room for friends or a small family. The A-Class will be designed to remedy that issue.

Where it could go wrong
Mercedes needs to make entry luxury buyers believe that the gap between the A- and C-Class is small and that they’re getting more than just a three-pointed star for their $35,000-plus. If Benz can’t pull that off, then the A-Class probably won’t make it.

When to expect it
2018.

Mercedes Benz X Class

Mercedes-Benz X-Class

What we know
Mercedes-Benz’s X-Class is a rugged luxury pickup that’s been on the company’s back burner for years but is finally moving forward. Using Nissan’s Navara pickup architecture, the Mercedes truck will be available in many trims, ranging from a base tradesman edition without the brand’s signature comforts to more luxurious models. In addition to traditional diesel engines, the X-Class will also have both four-cylinder and six-cylinder gasoline engines, along with a hybrid electric powertrain that will come later in the truck’s product cycle. The styling of the X-Class will parallel the rest of the company’s lineup of crossovers and should be quite handsome.

Why it matters
Midsize pickup trucks are the world’s workhorses. Forget what Ford, Ram, and GM have spouted for years; smaller, lighter duty trucks are big business and make up much of global truck sales. Mercedes-Benz adding a light-duty truck to its portfolio is the first foray into the company’s technical partnership with Nissan. If the X-Class proves fruitful, it could further the relationship.

Where it could go wrong
According to Mercedes’ vans chief Volker Mornhinweg, “The big three (Ford, GM, Ram) already own about 90 percent of this market. It’s a cutthroat environment; newcomers like us would invariably fight an arduous uphill battle.”

When to expect it
Sometime next year.

Mercedes Benz G Class

Mercedes-Benz G-Class

What we know
The Geländewagen has just been freshened for 2016, but look for massive changes to follow in the near future. The truck’s extremely heavy underpinnings will give way to ones composed of lightweight aluminum, shedding more than 800 pounds in the process. The rig will get an even more civilian-minded interior, and its front live axle will evolve into an independent one. Don’t worry: The G-Class will still be a monster over rough terrain, as it’s expected to maintain its three locking differentials. Powertrains will stay the same—4.0-liter and 5.5-liter turbocharged V-8s (we’re betting the 6.0-liter V-12 won’t survive)—with an expected 20 percent increase in fuel efficiency. A plug-in hybrid G-Class could also be in the works.

Why it matters
This will be the first major update to the truck in 10 years. The G-Class is a landmark vehicle from one of the best names in the business, and it is heartening to see support for such a historic model. This update will hopefully bring a healthy dose of manners to an otherwise unruly car; the weight loss and the interior refinements will go a long way.

Where it could go wrong
Sales have been strong, but the market for an inefficient, brutish, slab-sided SUV might wane before Mercedes has a chance to really transform the G-Class. And if dwindling demand doesn’t spell doom, Benz’s recent push toward efficiency and electrification might.

When to expect it
by 2019

Porsche 929

Porsche 929

What we know
People have wanted an up-market, front-engine Porsche grand tourer for a while, but the automaker couldn’t make a fiscal case for it. That’s why the 928 died off. But now that Porsche’s synergies with sister brands Bentley and Lamborghini are blossoming, a new GT might make sense. Bentley will use the platform from Porsche’s 2017 Panamera for a new coupe it is building, and it will in turn let Porsche dive into the same gene pool. The 929 would launch as a coupe with a convertible variant to follow.

Why it matters
Porsche needs to expand its hybrid and electric efforts to steer through upcoming emission chicanes without picking up too many penalty points. Since its sports cars must remain light and agile, we should see an intriguing mix of hybrid and plug-in powertrains for the 929. Total scalability will be required to respond to improved batteries, e-motors, and performance electronics.

Where it could go wrong
The 929 is not a must-have for Porsche. In a crunch, proper cash cows, such as a baby Macan or a Cayenne coupe, would probably take priority over a front-engine coupe. And though the coming all-electric Mission E sedan will be Porsche’s green flagship, the brand might decide it needs a higher-volume EV more urgently.

When to expect it
2020 if it happens.

Mini Roomba

Mini Roomba

What we know
Mini should be the epitome of small, stylish, and sporty runabouts, but its cars keep growing in size and price. The Roomba would be the brand’s largest offering by far, large enough to revive the long-forgotten Maxi nameplate. Benefits include superior space utilization, enhanced practicality, and the ability to accommodate enough batteries for a plug-in hybrid derivative. There is talk of making Roomba one of five so-called Mini “superheroes,” but the MPV faces strong in-house rival proposals, such as a cute sedan and a striking crossover.

Why it matters
Roomba could make it clear that Mini is prioritizing pragmatism over emotion. It would help parent company BMW cut costs by sharing key elements with its products while being emphatically Mini in appearance and appeal. Maybe, just maybe, a big car is what Mini needs.

Where it could go wrong
An MPV might be the wrong signal to send to its young non-conformist clientele, a brand-compatible minivan might not be possible, and the budget devoted to Roomba might tread on or cancel other, more innovative vehicle programs. Not to mention trademark issues.

When to expect it
Probably not before 2021

Nissan Z

Nissan Z

What we know
Although there is still no clear answer whether there will be another version of the Nissan Z, it’s crazy to think given its heritage that Nissan will ditch the only true sports car left in its lineup save the high-priced, low-volume GT-R. Given the ties between the 350Z and Infiniti G35 (and later the 370Z and G37), the logical path for a future Z car would be to use the bones of the new Q60 coupe as its base. There is also sentiment within the Nissan ranks to develop a smaller, purer Z along the lines of its well-received, rear-drive IDx concepts, but that would probably require a costly, bespoke platform. Not likely.

Why it matters
Aside from the GT-R, Nissan sells a lot of solid but staid cars. The 370Z is the exception in that it appeals to enthusiasts, and despite waning sales of late, it draws on a long heritage of Nissan and Datsun sport coupes. With the recent resurgence of affordable, rear-wheel-drive models, including the Subaru BRZ and Mazda MX-5 Miata, we’d love to see Nissan launch a fresh competitor in the segment.

Where it could go wrong
Top Nissan execs have waffled on whether they want to renew the Z, and they know there’s far more money to be made building crossovers than a lower-volume sports coupe. Developing a unique sports car is expensive as well (just ask Subaru and Toyota, which had to share costs to bring the BRZ/86 to life), and given Nissan’s dreams of growing global sales and market share, the Z’s future is very much in flux.

When to expect it
No sooner than 2018 if at all

Toyota 86 Subaru BRZ

Toyota 86/Subaru BRZ

What we know
The “Toyobaru” sports car hasn’t sold particularly well for either Toyota or Subaru, so we were pleasantly surprised when officials from both brands confirmed the little coupe will live on for another generation. Toyota especially needs a fun car to remain in its lineup. While we’d like to see a turbocharged version of the Subaru-sourced, 2.0-liter direct-injected flat-four, we’re not expecting it. Margins on this car are small, and turbocharging adds cost and complexity, but perhaps another 20 to 30 hp could come through some clever tuning.

Why it matters
These rear-wheel-drive coupes are unlike anything else on the market, especially for less than $30,000. The Mazda MX-5 Miata isn’t as practical, but that car and both the Toyota and Subaru come standard with a manual transmission. Love ’em now; niche cars never seem to live as long as they should.

Where it could go wrong
Gains in weight and price, a dilution of the back-to-basics feel, or an unwillingness to give the car the extra power it’s capable of handling could kill the fun. The new car needs to address the few but widely held critiques of the current-gen car or buyers will walk.

When to expect it
2018.

Volvo XC40

Volvo XC40

What we know
Because the small luxury crossover segment just keeps getting hotter and hotter, Volvo will debut its XC40 a year after it shows off its all-new, bigger XC60. The XC40 will feature a 1.5-liter three-cylinder as its base engine and potentially two optional 2.0-liter turbo-fours, including a version of the supercharged and turbocharged unit from the XC90. There should also be a plug-in hybrid variant that combines traditional Volvo design themes with more youth-oriented cues such as two-tone paint schemes currently popular in Europe.

Why it matters
The premium compact-crossover segment is on fire in Europe and North America, and it’s growing ever bigger in China too. A relatively popular model like this, priced less than $40,000, will play a major role in making Volvo a premium player globally and help build a loyal population of customers likely to return for bigger, more expensive models.

Where it could go wrong
Hard to see where the Swedes might misstep with this model, but the biggest uncertainty here is the CMA platform Volvo is sharing with Chinese parent company Geely. The first Volvo models to use the platform will be next year’s S40 and V40, so we’ll see how it is when those cars come out.

When to expect it
2018.

Volkswagen Bulli

Volkswagen Bulli

What we know
Finally, the modern Microbus is coming. VW management has reportedly signed off on a four-door, steel-body crossover with a one-box design more contemporary than the 2011 concept you see here but with retro design cues. A turbocharged four-cylinder engine could easily power the base Bulli, but given that the chic crossover will use VW’s all-new, electric-friendly MEB architecture, it might go the plug-in and EV-only route. If we’re right, the EV model could feature wireless inductive charging as well. It would appear the wait for another microvan has been well worth it.

Why it matters
The Bulli is the first of many VW MEB models to come. They will share a trademark light signature, a clever air-intake design, and a trick windshield instrument panel, but with different body styles, unique interiors, and made-to-measure chassis. The MEB platform will work for low- or high-floor applications and will accommodate up to four electric motors. Zero-emission driving range will vary from 180 to 400 miles, and MEB will be set up for autonomous driving and easy battery swaps.

Where it could go wrong
The usual stumbling blocks: timing, volume, technology, cost, complexity, compatibility.  Hardware and software are still in their infancy, and VW is trying to figure out which electric motors will work best for its needs. Not to mention that a heritage-derived electric vehicle could seriously struggle in a future-oriented market that loves modern shapes and visible advanced technologies.

When to expect it
2020

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http://www.automobilemag.com/news/future-cars-suvs-2016/feed/ 0 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Aston Martin Vantage 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Aston Martin DBX 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Audi R6 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Bentley Anaga 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end BMW 9 Series 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Bugatti Chiron Grand Sport 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Cadillac XT7 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Ford Bronco 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Kia Stinger coupe 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Jeep Comanche 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Genesis G60 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Dodge Barracuda 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Dodge Challenger 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Lexus LC F 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Lotus Exalt 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Mazda RX 9 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Mercedes Benz A Class 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Mercedes Benz X Class 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Mercedes Benz G Class 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Porsche 929 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Mini Roomba 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Nissan Z 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Toyota 86 Subaru BRZ 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Volvo XC40 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end Volkswagen Bulli
2017 Nissan Pathfinder Revealed With More Power, Torque, Tech http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-pathfinder-revealed-more-power-torque-tech/ http://www.automobilemag.com/news/2017-nissan-pathfinder-revealed-more-power-torque-tech/#respond Thu, 07 Jul 2016 16:30:45 +0000 http://www.automobilemag.com/?p=964959 Back in 2012, Nissan came to a crossroads with its much-loved Pathfinder nameplate. Though the rough-and-tough SUV earned its credibility and popularity largely as a durable four-wheel-drive machine with off-road chops, times had changed. People were flocking to soft-roading family SUVs such as the Ford Explorer and Honda Pilot. Nissan soon followed suit, swapping the...

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Back in 2012, Nissan came to a crossroads with its much-loved Pathfinder nameplate. Though the rough-and-tough SUV earned its credibility and popularity largely as a durable four-wheel-drive machine with off-road chops, times had changed. People were flocking to soft-roading family SUVs such as the Ford Explorer and Honda Pilot. Nissan soon followed suit, swapping the Pathfinder’s body-on-frame platform with a unibody structure adapted from the Altima sedan. With its newfound focus on people-moving, Nissan’s gambit worked like a charm. Instantly, sales more than doubled from 42,621 for the 2012 model year to 88,632 for the 2013 model year.

Now that the people have clearly spoken with their wallets, the 2017 Nissan Pathfinder is here to keep that train rolling. As you’d expect, the refreshed Pathfinder gets modernized looks with plenty of new technology and convenience equipment. But Nissan also packed the 2017 Pathfinder with more power, torque, and greater towing capacity. It’s still not the seasoned off-roader of yore, but when it comes to hauling a truck full of kids and a boat in tow, at least on paper, the 2017 Nissan Pathfinder is more ready than ever before to perform.

The heart of the 2017 Nissan Pathfinder is its revised 3.5-liter V-6 engine with new direct-injection technology, also at work in the latest Armada SUV. Combined with a revised combustion chamber design, pistons, and intake manifold, the updated V-6 features 50 percent new parts. The result is a bump in power and torque to 284 hp and 259 lb-ft (formerly 260 hp and 240 lb-ft). The compression ratio is additionally now 11:1 versus 10.3:1 with the old engine. And despite the upgrades, Nissan does not expect fuel economy to suffer—ratings are predicted to remain at 20/27/22 mpg city/highway/combined.Towing capacity rises for the 2017 Nissan Pathfinder by 1,000 pounds to a total of 6,000 pounds. That comes in part because of the upgraded engine output, but also because of updates to Nissan’s Xtronic (continuously variable) transmission similar to what’s used in the Maxima sedan. Reinforcements to the body and trailer hitch area also make the new tow rating possible.

Adjustments to the suspension promise to make the new Pathfinder handle better, as well. Retuned shocks, 11 percent stiffer up front and 7 percent stiffer in the rear, combine with 25 percent stiffer rear rebound springs and new rebound springs for the front struts for a claimed improvement in body control and reduced roll. “Fine tuning of the spring rates and the addition of front strut rebound springs has allowed better control of typical body motions such as roll and pitch and bounce,” said Nissan vice president of product planning Michael Bunce, in a statement. “The result is the Pathfinder remains flatter while cornering and road vibrations are well controlled, especially on rough roads and during off-road driving.” Nissan also retuned the electric power steering system for 11 percent quicker steering.

On the looks front, the 2017 Nissan Pathfinder ditches its dated appearance for something a little sleeker and more refined. Picking up some cues from the Maxima and Murano (such as the rear-fender kink), the Pathfinder strikes a more modern note. Both the front and rear fascias have been redesigned with new headlights and taillights and optional LEDs, but the big addition is Nissan’s widespread V-motion grille design. 18-inch machine aluminum alloy wheels are standard, while fat 20-inchers come standard with the fully loaded Platinum model.

2017 Nissan Pathfinder cabin 03

Although the exterior does look a little sweeter, the bigger improvements for the Pathfinder happen inside. There’s a new display between the tach and speedometer in the instrument cluster, standard Bluetooth connectivity, dual USB ports, and a new 8-inch touchscreen monitor now dominates the center stack. Navigation is optional for the SV and SL trim levels, and standard on the Platinum model. Nissan Connect app services are also available, which is new for the Pathfinder lineup. Starting on the Platinum SV there’s keyless entry, an 8-way power adjustable driver’s seat, a new foot-activated motion liftgate, Nissan Around View 360-degree camera, and remote start. Jump to the SL for heated front and rear leather seating surfaces with lumbar support, blind-spot monitoring, and rear-cross traffic alert. The fully loaded Platinum model gets satellite radio, LED exterior lighting, cooled front seats, a Bose 13-speaker sound system, adaptive cruise control, and forward emergency braking.

The 2017 Pathfinder’s technology, handling, towing, and powertrain improvements will likely prove wise, especially as the Honda Pilot, Toyota Highlander, and Ford Explorer are upping their game in these departments. Pricing for the 2017 Nissan Pathfinder won’t be available for a little while, but we don’t expect big changes. Expect the Pathfinder S to start right around $30,000, ranging up to the Platinum model in the low $40,000 space.

 

2017 Nissan Pathfinder front view in motion 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end 01 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 01 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 2017 Nissan Pathfinder hands free liftgate 2017 Nissan Pathfinder cabin 01 2017 Nissan Pathfinder cabin 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder center console 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter 06 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter 05 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 05 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter 04 2017 Nissan Pathfinder headlamp and wheel 2017 Nissan Pathfinder headlamp 2017 Nissan Pathfinder tail lamp 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 03 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 04 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter 03 2017 Nissan Pathfinder badge 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder badge 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front downhill 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end 02 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end downhill 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end on rocks 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front end 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front grille 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front side in motion 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter 02 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter 03 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter 04 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter 05 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 06 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 07 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 08 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 09 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 10 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 11 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 12 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 13 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 14 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 15 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 16 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 17 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 18 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 19 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 20 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 21 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter in motion 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarter 2017 Nissan Pathfinder front three quarters 2017 Nissan Pathfinder grille 2017 Nissan Pathfinder headlamp 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear end in motion 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear side in motion 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear side in motion 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear taillight 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 02 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 03 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 04 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 05 1 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter in motion 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter in motion 03 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter in motion 04 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter in motion 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarter 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarters 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder rear three quarters 2017 Nissan Pathfinder side in motion 2017 Nissan Pathfinder wheels 02 2017 Nissan Pathfinder wheels

The post 2017 Nissan Pathfinder Revealed With More Power, Torque, Tech appeared first on Automobile Magazine.

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