There were plenty of debuts at this year’s Detroit Auto Show, but these three were the ones that I liked best. There was no formal checklist or official requirements for these cars to make my list. The only thing they had to do was well and truly get my attention and make me want to get behind the wheel, which is really saying something in the shiny, glitzy, over-the-top experience that is the Detroit Auto Show.
KIA GT4 Stinger Concept
I fought for a spot in the crush of people waiting for this debut because it had me so intrigued. This is the company that just launched the KIA Soul. You know, the one with the hamsters? The KIA GT4 Stinger is about as far removed from cute little hamsters as is possible.
This car isn’t slated for production, but hot damn, if it was I’d be first in line to take it for a drive. Look at it. No, really, just look at it. That is a sexy looking beast.
It’s got 315 horsepower with a 2.0-liter engine and a 6-speed manual transmission. It weighs in at just 2,874 pounds with a 52/48 front/rear weight distribution. The sad part is that it’s only a concept. The good part is that KIA says it’s a sign of things to come.
2015 Ford F-150
The debut of the 2015 Ford F-150 was a big deal. It was so big that it actually drove through a (paper) wall to get to the stage. In an arena. Yeah, big deal and it backed up that big entrance with some big changes.
First, it lost 700 pounds thanks to the use of aluminum alloys rather than steel. They tested the daylights out of it to make sure that aluminum was up for the challenge, setting a new standard and leaving other manufacturers to step up their game.
They also added a 2.7-liter EcoBoost twin-turbo V6 to the engine line-up and promise it’ll have plenty of power. And it looks good. Trucks are not sleek and sporty. They are tough and rugged and look like they could run over smaller cars without a second thought.
I have absolutely no reason to own a truck in my day-to-day life, but the 2015 Ford F-150 makes me want one. I’ll find something to haul and will only run over the really slow cars.
2015 BMW M3
The 2015 BMW M3 didn’t get me on looks at all because, baby blue, yuck, but it did get me on the promise of what’s beneath the hood. There’s a 425 horsepower 3.0-liter 6-cylinder engine with 406 lb-ft of torque hiding under that less than flattering color.
They’ve trimmed some weight, improved the aerodynamics, and say that it’ll make 0-60 in 4.1 seconds with the standard six-speed manual transmission. It’s got the get up and go of a sporty car with the space and function of a sedan. Sign me up, just not in a color best reserved for Easter eggs.
Watch all three of these vehicles make their Detroit debuts..
Nicole Wakelin fell in love with cars as a teenager when she got to go for a ride in a Ferrari. It was red and it was fast and that was all that mattered. Game over. She considers things a bit more carefully now, but still has a weakness for fast, beautiful cars. Nicole also writes for NerdApproved and GeekMom.