Detroit 2013 Hits and Misses — Joe DeMatio

The 2014 Chevrolet Corvette Stingray speaks to me in a way that no recent Corvette ever has, and its debut on Sunday night at a 1915-era, Albert Kahn-designed former auto factory in Detroit was the most dramatic car unveiling I’ve attended in years.

Chevy Silverado & GMC Sierra are so similar to the outgoing models, I walked right by them, paused, and said to myself, oh, that’s right, these are supposed to be new. Sure don’t look it.

Ford Atlas is handsome and beautifully detailed, but it’s all sheetmetal, no glass. Why do high-riding truck buyers need to be even more insulated from everyone else on the road?

Kia Cadenza is a disappointment. It looks like a Korean car and is nowhere near as fresh and modern as the Optima that it will be positioned above in the marketplace. Even the name sounds like something you’d see on a cheap knock-off vehicle at Auto China.

Acura NSX Concept 2.0 was a very, very pleasant surprise. How can the same studio that has given us the boring ILX and completely uninspired RLX sedans produce this stunner?

Tesla Model X crossover is further proof that Tesla is changing the game in a big way. So-called Falcon Wing (piano-hinged) doors are super cool. Cabin is modern, roomy, airy.

Hyundai HCD-14 Genesis concept looked a lot more interesting to me than, say, the overstyled Infiniti G50 production sedan.

• The Mercedes-Benz CLA250 might just be a small Mercedes that people will give a fig about. Sure looks good.

Volkswagen CrossBlue concept is handsome but perhaps too formal for American crossover buyers. How is it possible that Volkswagen of America STILL doesn’t have a 3-row crossover in dealerships?

Cadillac ELR competes with Corvette as GM’s sexiest NAIAS debut. All the technological brilliance of the Volt, minus the dowdiness. This ain’t no Fleetwood.


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