Take a look at the cars most likely to make you look twice at this year's New York International Auto Show.
Chrysler 300 SRT8
Chrysler’s hot rod sedan, the 300 SRT8, has made a comeback. The gangster mobile now has a 6.4-litre V8 producing an estimated 465 hp and 465 lb ft of torque. The SRT8 is expected to get from 0-60mph in the high four-second range, while top speed is 175 mph. The five-speed automatic transmission from the previous SRT-8 is carried over, although drivers will have paddle-shifters on the steering for manual changes. The SRT8 gets a navigation and infotainment system accessed through an 8.4 inch touchscreen, while a 900 watt, 19-speaker Harman Kardon audio system is available as an option.
Suzuki Kizashi Apex and EcoCharge concepts
Suzuki showcased the Kizashi based EcoCharge and Apex concepts, one for satisfying eco-minded motorists, and the other for the performance enthusiast. The Kizashi Apex concept pays tribute to the company’s championship-winning superbikes. It comes in with race-bike inspired graphics, and features a Garrett turbocharged 2.4 litre four-cylinder engine enabling it produce between 275-300 hp – all sent through a six-speed manual transmission to the front wheels. The Kizashi EcoCharge concept features a 25 percent improvement over the standard road car’s fuel economy figure, thanks to the adoption of a new 2.0 litre hybrid powertrain. The engine produces 144 hp and 177 lb ft of torque, and is connected to a six-speed automatic transmission.
Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8
America’s answer to the Porsche Cayenne Turbo, BMW X5 M, and Mercedes Benz ML63 AMG comes in the form of the 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee SRT8. It comes equipped with the same engine doing service in other Chrysler brand SRT models, a 6.4 litre V8 engine putting out 465 hp and 465 lb ft of torque. Sprinting from a standstill to 60 mph takes 4.8 seconds, while the top speed is 155 mph. The Jeep promises plenty of grip, being able to generate 0.9g on the skid-pad. It retains the five-speed auto from other Jeeps, but with paddle-shifters on the steering wheel. Five-spoke 20-inch wheels riding on Pirelli PZero run-flat tyres will be standard, as well as Brembo brake discs (15-inch at the front, 13.8 at the rear) and callipers. The Jeep will appear in showrooms in the third quarter of this year.
2012 Subaru Impreza
Subaru unveiled the 2012 Impreza in New York, and the first thing that strikes you is how faithful the design has remained to the concept car shown not too long ago. The Impreza will get a 2.0 litre Boxer engine producing 148 hp and 145 lb ft of torque, and is connected to either a five-speed manual or an automatic CVT transmission. The Impreza has all-wheel drive as standard, and will be available as either a four-door sedan or a five-door hatchback. Buyers will be able to choose between base and premium models, with the latter having Bluetooth hands-free phone connectivity and audio streaming, iPod control capability, a USB port, a 3.5mm auxiliary input jack, and six speakers. Info on the next WRX and STI models have yet to be released, but expect the same formula of a turbocharged engine, all-wheel drive, and north of 300 hp.
The Lexus LF-Gh gives a hint on what future Lexuses will look like. Featuring a sleek yet muscular design, the LF-Gh is most probably what the Lexus GS’s replacement will look like. Lexus take pride in being able to combine an environment-friendly powertrain, with an “inspiring driving experience,” thanks to rear-wheel drive and a hybrid system. Though Lexus have not given out any details on what kind of engine the LF-Gh uses, it most likely features a V6-hybrid system similar to the one found in the GS 450h.
2012 Shelby GT500 Super Snake and GTS
Shelby, the legendary Ford Mustang tuning house also made an appearance in New York with the 2012 Shelby GT500 Super Snake and Shelby GTS. The Super Snake now features a twin-screw Kenne Bell supercharger, and now puts out 800 hp, 50 hp more than the 2011 Super Snake. The Shelby GTS is a new model that has V6 and GT owners in mind. Apart from exterior modifications to the standard car, it also features changes to the suspension and brakes, while the engine gets a new cold-air intake. A supercharger for the GTS is optional though, increasing the V6’s power output to 475hp, and the GT’s to anywhere between 525 and 624 hp.
Scion FR-S Sports Coupe concept
The Scion FR-S Sports Coupe concept effectively confirmed that Toyota’s hotly anticipated FT-86 will be wearing the Scion badge when it goes on sale in the United States. It features the same rear-wheel drive and 2.0 litre Boxer engine combination as the Toyota FT-86 concept, and can be had with either a six-speed manual or automatic transmission. The Scion FR-S concept is expected to become a production reality sometime next year.
2012 Volkswagen Beetle
Volkswagen continues the retro theme with the 2012 Beetle. Although the design is old-school, the rest of the car is thoroughly modern thanks to a clean interior design and a selection of efficient engines. The North American market will have a choice of a naturally-aspirated 2.5 litre five-cylinder engine (170 hp and 177 lb ft of torque), a turbocharged 2.0 litre four-cylinder engine (200 hp and 207 lb ft of torque), or a 2.0 litre turbocharged diesel engine (140 hp and 236 lb ft of torque) capable of getting up to 40 mpg on the highway. For the 2.5 litre model, drivers will get a five-speed manual transmission as standard (a six-speed automatic is optional), while the other models come equipped with a six-speed manual as standard, with a six-speed dual-clutch transmission (DSG) available as an option. The 2012 Beetle goes on sale in the fall.