Fresh lineup of international cars at auto show
Presidents Day in Pittsburgh means more than thoughts of Honest Abe, mattress sales and maybe some time off work.
It’s auto show time. The Pittsburgh International Auto Show opens Friday at 10 a.m. and runs through Monday at 6 p.m. at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center, Downtown.
Thisyear’s highlights — among40 manufacturers and dozensof vendors — include more exotic cars than ever, the Ford F-150 Police Responder, and a chance to test drive four Toyota models.
Here’s a closer look at those high points, followed by mini-reviews of some of the production cars there.
Exotic cars: Face it — this will be the closest many of us will get to a McLaren, Lamborghini, Bentley, Aston Martin or Ferrari.
One unusual item is Ferrari’s GT4Lusso. Three passengers can join you for a death-defying ride, if you choose. The V-12 engine will inspire excitement with 680 horsepower and a 0-100 km/ H in 3.4 seconds.
Another is the Ford GT. It has a long history of turning heads and wowing spectators — casual passers-by will probably think “Ferrari” — and it does it with a 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine, creating a whopping 647 horsepower. Ford also uses the GT as a test bed for new technologies in performance and lightweight materials. Ford F-150 Police Responder: This is an off-road F-150 decked out in police gear and designed to grab your attention. Capable of speeds up to 100 mph, the allnew F-150 Police Responder features a 3.5-liter EcoBoost® engine and 10speed transmission, putting out 375 horsepower and 470 lb.-ft. of torque.
Toyota test drives: Visitors will get a chance to tool around in four Toyota models — the C-HR, Camry, RAV4 and Tacoma.
2019 Subaru Ascent: The small Japanese brand that taught U.S. drivers about the awesomeness of all-wheel drive is finally making room forthe whole family with this seven-or eight-passenger, three-row SUV.
The turbo charged 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine will create260 horsepower, so motivation should be easy to find.
With towing capability of up to 5,000 pounds, the Ascent will be a contender, but with just 74.2 cubic feet behind the first row, space will be at a premium.
Subaru reports the Ascent will cruise into showrooms in the summer.
2019 Ford Mustang Bullitt: This new hot rod takes us back to the future.
The limited-edition Mustang Bullitt celebrates the 50th anniversary of the iconic movie “Bullitt,” starring Steve McQueen.
The trim level features a 5.0-liter V8 engine that makes at least 475 horsepower and 420 lb.-ft. of torque. The top speed will be at 163 mph. That’s 8 mph more than the Mustang GT.
All that power will go to the rear wheels via a sixspeed manual transmission featuring the classic white cue-ball knob shifter. Visitors to the show can enjoy the 12-inch instrument cluster, Recaro black leathertrimmed seats, and green accent stitching.
2018 Jeep Wrangler: As muchas marketers might disagree, few vehicles truly canbe called icons, but the Jeep Wrangler is one. So Fiat Chrysler throws around the term “all new” with some extra consideration.
Ifind the 3.0-liter Eco Diesel V-6option a cool idea, but I am a diesel geek. A 2.0-liter turbocharged in line four-cylinder engine joins the Wrangler lineup, while the 3.6-liter Pentastar V-6 engine is upgraded for2018. A six-speed manual is standard while an eight-speed automatic is an option.
The company says dozens of door, top and windshield combinations allow for endless configuration possibilities, and I believe them.
Must-see 2018 models
Here’s a wrap-up of some 2018 models you’ll see there:
2018 Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid: The Ioniq uses a fourcylinder engine mated to an electric motor that captures brake pedal energy to recharge the battery and help conserve fuel economy. A plug-in model is also available for 2018.
The Ioniq borrows the wind-cheating profile of the Prius, but offers shifty drivers a real, honest-to-goodness six-speed shiftable automatic transmission.
The139 combined horsepower from 1.6-liter engine and32 kW motor doesn’t makea rocket out of the Ioniq.
2018 Genesis G90: This new division of Hyundai separates the wheat from the chaff, gives the wheat a fancy name, and boosts the price.
But the result is not going to make you think “Hyundai.” Mr. Driver’s Seat didn’t recognize one at first pass, so chances are you won’t.
The5.0-liter V-8 produces 420horsepower. It rockets the G90 to 60 mph in 5.3 seconds. A silver T handle shifter motivates drivers through the eight-speed automatic operates seamlessly, and shift function is delightful.
2018 Hyundai Sonata Limited 2.0T: This sedan — even without the turbo — offers a great ride, nice handling, and decent performance. A 2016 turbocharged version added even better performance all around, so the same probably holds true for the 2018.
And you’ll get the fun features of the expensive brands at a fraction of the price.
2018 Volkswagen Atlas: Volkswagen goes full-on with an effort to capture America’s large three-row SUV market.
The Volkswagen Atlas tested had a 3.6-liter V-6 that produces 276 horsepower mated to an 8-speed automatic. A 2.0-liter four provides 235 horses.
2018 Volkswagen Tiguan: This sporty, midsize crossover from Volkswagen has grown up from previous incarnations, and features available three-row seating and more cargo space.
All trim levels of the Tiguan come with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that creates 184 horsepower.
The pioneers behind the high-performance 2017 Ford GT designed it not only to win races but also to serve as a test bed for new technologies and ideas for future vehicles across Ford’s vehicle lineup.