2015 Los Angeles Auto Show Preview
By Christian Wardlaw, October 20, 2015
What new cars are debuting at the 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show? That’s a great question, and as this article is written a month in advance of the first major U.S. auto show of the season, show organizers have announced that there will be nearly 25 global and North American vehicle debuts in L.A. Advance information is trickling out about many of those. Here’s what we know (or think we know) so far:
2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia
With the 4C sports car, Alfa Romeo has already made a quiet return to the North American market. With the Giulia midsize luxury sport sedan, more people will notice. Set to compete with cars such as the Audi A6, BMW 5 Series, Cadillac CTS, Hyundai Genesis, and Mercedes-Benz E-Class, the new Alfa Romeo Giulia gives auto shoppers a clear alternative to the status quo.
The redesigned A4 debuted at the recent Frankfurt Motor Show, and Audi will almost certainly display the car in Los Angeles, detailing specifications for the North American market in the process. In addition to showcasing the new A4, Audi will likely introduce its performance-oriented S4 variant in L.A.
2016 Audi Q7
The redesigned Audi Q7 has taken its sweet time coming to market, but is now ready to replace a decade-old design. Audi will almost certainly have a gaggle of new Q7 SUVs on the show floor in L.A., ready for poking and prodding by Southern California Audi customers.
2016 BMW M2
BMW has already released images and details for the performance-tuned M2 Coupe, the aggressively swollen version of the 2 Series that driving enthusiasts hoped would arrive. The car employs the traditional M recipe, which transforms the 365-horsepower M2 into a track-ready rocket.
2016 BMW X4 M40i
Take one BMW X4, which is a fastback-style version of the BMW X3, add horsepower, torque, and go-faster equipment, install a more aggressive body kit, and you’ve got the new X4 M40i.
2017 Buick LaCrosse
Buick’s redesigned full-size LaCrosse sedan is confirmed to debut in Los Angeles, and is expected to look similar to the critically acclaimed Avenir Concept that Buick introduced at the 2015 North American International Auto Show in Detroit. In a statement, Buick says that the new 2017 LaCrosse “will feature many Avenir-inspired design cues and introduce the new face of Buick.”
Automotive News reports that the new LaCrosse’s front styling theme will be applied to all Buick models by 2018. The publication also claims that the new LaCrosse sits on the same platform as the new Chevy Malibu.
Though it will be introduced to a global audience at the Dubai Motor Show, the new Cadillac XT5 will be shown shortly thereafter in Los Angeles, where it makes its North American debut. The XT5 replaces the Cadillac SRX, introducing the company’s new naming convention for all future SUVs. The XT5 will continue to compete with luxury SUVs such as the Audi Q5, BMW X3, Lexus RX, Lincoln MKX, and Mercedes-Benz GLE-Class.
2016 Fiat 124 Spyder
A new 2-seat roadster is coming, and it is shaping up to be an impressive effort. Based on the Mazda MX-5 Miata, but employing unique design, proprietary turbocharged engines, and a manual or dual-clutch automated manual gearbox, the new Fiat 124 Spyder is the most exciting news from Fiat since it rolled out its sporty 500 Abarth models.
2017 Ford F-150 Raptor
Recently spied without camouflage, the new Ford F-150 Raptor is likely to debut in production form at this year’s L.A. Auto Show. Another possibility is a Mustang Shelby GT350 Convertible. For now, Ford isn’t talking, so stay tuned.
Revealed in its home-market of South Korea as the Avante, the redesigned 2017 Hyundai Elantra takes the same path as its larger sibling, the Sonata, in terms of its design. Visual drama is replaced with a more tailored appearance, and the interior is said to be quieter than the outgoing model.
Additional highlights include new safety features such as automatic emergency braking, a blind-spot warning system, rear cross-traffic alert, and a hands-free power trunk option. Engine offerings are reportedly shared with the Tucson crossover SUV: a 164-horsepower, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder or a turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine making 175 horsepower and plenty of torque.
2017 Infiniti QX30
Based on the Q30 that Infiniti debuted at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the QX30 is an entry-level luxury crossover SUV that uses the same underpinnings, bodywork, and interior but with a more rugged appearance. Think of it this way: The QX30 is to the Q30 what the Subaru Crosstrek is to the Subaru Impreza.
In any case, under the curvaceous sheetmetal the Infiniti shares its guts with the Mercedes-Benz GLA250. That means it has a turbocharged, 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine good for 208 horsepower, a 7-speed dual-clutch automated manual gearbox, and an available all-wheel-drive (AWD) system.
2017 Jaguar F-Pace
One of the stars of the Frankfurt Motor Show, in L.A. the Jaguar F-Pace will show its face to North American customers for the first time. The F-Pace is Jaguar’s first SUV, and represents a critical building block in the automaker’s plan to dramatically increase sales in coming years.
2017 Kia Sportage
Kia debuted its new Sportage at the Frankfurt Motor Show, and now the spry compact crossover SUV will get its North American introduction in Los Angeles. Based on information released in Frankfurt, the Sportage will sit on the same platform and use the same drivetrain that Kia’s sister brand, Hyundai, employs for the redesigned 2016 Tucson.
2017 Land Rover Range Rover Evoque Convertible
For this debut, the name says it all. Take one Range Rover Evoque Coupe (the 3-door version of the SUV), slice off the roof, and you’ve got Land Rover’s new mobile tanning bed. With this open-air Evoque’s arrival, Jeep’s Wrangler no longer owns the off-roading convertible segment.
The current Mazda CX-9 debuted for the 2007 model year, and it has changed little since then. Given the number of spy photos that are circulating and purporting to show the redesigned CX-9, it makes sense that this new midsize, 3-row crossover SUV will debut in Los Angeles.
Rumors put the new CX-9 on the same platform as the Mazda 6 sedan, employing a turbocharged 4-cylinder engine to ensure that it can handle up to 7 passengers. Interestingly, the CX-9’s turbo engine and optional AWD system are also rumored to signal a resurrection of the enthusiast-oriented Mazdaspeed 3 and Mazdaspeed 6 models.
2017 Mercedes-Benz SLC-Class
Mercedes-Benz is planning to introduce something new in Los Angeles, but isn’t divulging what that could be. Our bet is that Mercedes will wait to debut the redesigned 2017 E-Class for the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, and will use the sun-drenched L.A. Auto Show to introduce a redesigned SLK roadster, which will adopt the SLC moniker in accordance with the automaker’s new naming strategy.
2016 Mini Cooper Convertible
The time has come for the Mini Cooper Convertible to migrate from the second-generation Cooper platform to the third-generation architecture currently underpinning the Cooper Hardtop models. For the same reason that Mercedes is likely to use L.A. as a venue for introducing its new roadster, Mini is likely to debut a new Cooper Convertible under California’s palm trees.
2017 Mitsubishi Mirage
Mitsubishi plans to reveal an updated version of the affordable Mirage in Los Angeles. Designed for developing nations, the current Mirage is one of the most affordable paths to new-car ownership. Rumors suggest that the 2017 Mirage will provide more reasons to buy one, including a new 4-door sedan body style.
2016 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport
If you like the new look of the 2016 Outlander, then you’re probably going to be a fan of the updated 2016 Outlander Sport, which receives a minor re-skinning in accordance with the company’s “Dynamic Shield” design language. Because the Outlander Sport is Mitsubishi’s best-selling model, expect additional improvements intended to keep it competitive against the flood of new sub-compact crossover models.
2016 Nissan Sentra
When Nissan rolls the new 2016 Sentra onto a stage in L.A., expect a mild rather than a wild refresh of the automaker’s roomy compact car. Nissan’s “V-Motion” design language, as applied to the 2016 Altima and Maxima, will certainly be in attendance, and the Sentra will also likely see upgrades in terms of infotainment and safety technologies.
Scion Concept Vehicle
Scion has announced that it will introduce a new concept vehicle that points the way to a new brand icon. With the boxy xB rolling off into the sunset, and Scion’s desperate need for a crossover SUV, we’re betting the new concept will showcase a blend of all-weather capability and significant utility.
Subaru Impreza Concept
The oldest model in Subaru’s lineup is the Impreza, last redesigned for the 2012 model year. Subaru has already announced that it will show a conceptual version of the next-generation Impreza at the Tokyo Motor Show. That car, or a WRX-style derivative, is likely to be on display in L.A.
Volkswagen introduced the redesigned Tiguan at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show, but did not show the long-wheelbase version of this new crossover SUV that will be available in the North American market. That U.S.-spec version of the Tiguan is likely the big news that Volkswagen will share in Los Angeles.
2017 Volvo S90 and V90
Volvo says it will introduce a new model in Los Angeles, but doesn’t divulge what that might be. A recently leaked scale model image of a V90 station wagon provides a good clue that the mystery product will be a new flagship sedan called the S90 and station wagon named V90. Based on the toy model, it will adopt the design themes of the redesigned 2016 XC90.
L.A. Auto Show Dates and Ticket Prices
The LA Auto Show is held annually at the L.A. Convention Center. This year’s show opens to the media on November 17. Public attendance days run from November 20 to 29. Ticket prices for children are $5, senior citizens pay $10, and everyone else pays $12 or $15, with the higher price valid on Fridays and weekends.