The 2014 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) is underway right now in Detroit! It’s a stunning and exciting turnout of car manufacturers from all over the globe premiering the latest and greatest vehicles and vehicle technology. Both the Nissan and Acura brands have offerings that are guaranteed to intrigue and excite. So, today we want to share some of the highlights from the NAIAS that put both Nissan and Acura in the spotlight this year in Detroit.
Two concept cars that gained some press prior to NAIAS but made their first public appearance in Detroit are the IDx Freeflow and IDx NISMO models.
These remarkable cars are the result of what Nissan calls a co-creation product development approach. In layman’s terms, in order to target the young car buyers of today (born post 1990’s), Nissan took into account the feedback of today’s “digital natives” and what excites and inspires them when it comes to choosing a car to fit their ideals and lifestyle needs. Thus, the “casual, lifestyle-focused” IDx Freeflow and the “ultra sporty,” just-out-of-a-race-simulator IDx NISMO were born! (source)
But the real triumph for Nissan at NAIAS is the reveal of the Nissan Sports Sedan Concept.
According to Wikipedia, “a concept vehicle or show car is a car made to showcase new styling and/or new technology. They are often shown at motor shows to gauge customer reaction to new and radical designs which may or may not be mass-produced.”
In the case of the Sports Sedan Concept, there are indeed new elements that Nissan has introduced as its next generation design direction. These new design features include exterior bold body lines, V-Motion front aspect, a “floating” roof, boomerang-shaped lamps, and use of premium materials and diamond-shaped graphics on the interior on quilted seats, stitching, and panels. Of course, this is just a taste of what is in store with the Sports Sedan Concept. We’re sure we will only see a more stunning version of this concept when the vehicle does indeed go into production! So take that, Wikipedia.
And speaking of that Wikipedia definition, what was the customer reaction? Well, we’ll let Autoweek Magazine’s naming of the Nissan Sports Sedan Concept as the “Best Concept” speak for itself.
Finally, Nissan will also have on display its Autonomous LEAF prototype. Built on the all-electric LEAF foundation, the prototype will also feature new technology such as cameras, laser scanners, and radar which will showcase how the Autonomous LEAF can identify nearby pedestrians, traffic lights, and traffic signs. (source)
The big reveal for Acura at this year’s Detroit Auto show was the introduction of the 2015 TLX prototype, which will replace the TL and TSX models.
Dubbed as Acura’s “Red Carpet Athlete,” this breakout TLX model will be the start to a new level of luxury and power in the Acura lineup. Signature Acura safety technologies that have garnered top IIHS safety scores for the MDX and RDX over the years will carry over and similar safety results are expected for the TLX. That having been said, Acura fully intends to use the 2015 TLX to elevate industry standards in this segment.
According to Acura, the 2015 TLX “will feature more emotional styling with tidier, sports-sedan proportions wrapped around two all-new advanced powertrains that provide even more athletic performance, along with a host of signature Acura technologies. TLX will offer two all-new, high-performance and highly fuel-efficient direct-injected engines, each mated to an all-new advanced transmission, along with two-wheel-drive and all-wheel-drive available configurations.” Seeing as how this model, too, will go into production later this year, we couldn’t be more thrilled!
Unveiled on the heels of the 2015 TLX prototype was the TLX GT racecar.
Acura Motorsports has decided to move up in the racing world, specifically into the GT racing category. So if they want to do that, they’ve gotta have a GT racecar, right? What better way to compete against other sports-sedan models such as the Audi R8, Chevy Corvette, Dodge Viper, Nissan GT-R, Porsche 911, and Ferrari 458, to name a few, than to make a racecar version of Acura’s very own 2015 TLX?
Thanks to the partnership between Acura Motorsports and RealTime Racing, motorsports enthusiasts will see the TLX GT racecar make its debut in the highly competitive and respected Pirelli World Challenge Championship. (source)
Yes, it’s an exciting time to be a car fan. Of course, NAIAS is only one of the many international car shows that occur throughout the year, and we’re still only in the first month of 2014. Who knows what the future of car design and technology holds?
Have you been following the 2014 Detroit Auto Show? What are your thoughts about the concept and prototype vehicles you’ve seen today? Leave your thoughts in the comments below or tell us what you think over on our Facebook page.
*images courtesy Nissan and Acura