NFL season isn’t the only reason to be excited for the fall. Many new model year vehicles will be hitting showrooms in the coming weeks and months as automakers roll out their 2013 (and in a few cases 2014) offerings. We’ve scanned the automotive horizon to find the new rides we can’t wait to tackle.
Jaguar has delivered some of the most strikingly designed cars of the last decade thanks to the aesthetic genius of Ian Callum, poached from Aston Martin. But it’s hard for an automaker to make inroads in the Midwest and East Coast with rear-wheel drive cars that struggle in inclement weather. That’s why we can’t wait to try out the 2013 Jaguar XJ and XF with all-wheel drive, ready to tackle the worst that the snow belt can throw at a car. On top of that, Jaguar rolls out new fuel-efficient V6 engines in the XF and XJ that still deliver 340 horsepower. Bring on the snow! And more exciting news: Jaguar will be launching a two-seater convertible sports car with the sick F-Type in 2013. Next year will be good for fans of the leaping cat.
Acura’s all-new compact luxury sedan, the ILX, takes aim at 20- and 30-something drivers looking for style, performance, technology and value. With a base price below $30K, making it accessible to younger consumers, the ILX comes with three engine options: a 2.0-liter i-VTEC engine, a 2.4-liter i-VTEC engine and a hybrid IMA (Integrated Motor Assist) mill. Acura hasn’t done much in recent years to quicken the pulse of lead-footed gearheads, so we’re hoping the ILX breaks the streak.
The ILX has some stiff competition in the luxury sport sedan segment, with Cadillac debuting the all-new ATS. With three available engines topped by a 3.6-liter 321-horsepower V6 and both rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive models available, the ATS comes with available heads-up display, magnetic ride control, a sporty but well-crafted interior and Cadillac’s well-received CUE (Cadillac User Experience) tablet-style infotainment system. It adds up to a seductive package that aims to lure fans of the BMW 3-Series, Audi A4 and other entry-level luxury sport sedans.
You’ll have to wait a little longer for Mercedes-Benz to bring a more entry-level sport sedan into the mix, but it might be worth the wait for the 2014 CLA-Class. This compact four-door coupe took its bow as a concept at the 2012 Beijing Auto Show. Borrowing styling cues from the CLS, the CLA concept is extremely elegant and sporty looking. Its exact ETA and the available powertrains are still to be determined, but we can’t wait to welcome the CLA class sometime later next year.
When the Hyundai Veloster came out in 2011, it was a fun and fast-looking car that couldn’t run anywhere near competition like the VW GTI or the Mini Cooper S. Enter the 2013 Veloster Turbo with 201 horsepower, much more ready to step up against other hot hatches on the market. With an aggressive grille that sets it apart from the standard Veloster, the Turbo is a slick-looking upgrade. Hitting showrooms this summer, the Veloster Turbo boasts a performance-tuned engine, suspension and steering; 18-inch alloy wheels and a sporty interior geared toward track-day enthusiasts.