Written by Chris Miller Photos by Mike Davis
This event for media is always a great opportunity to see first hand, newly launched products and this year was what can only be described as a wow of a day. It started with a really big wow!
The president of Aston Martin introduced a truly radical vehicle, something out of the 22nd century, the RB001 Hypercar. As you can see from the photo it is an amazing looking vehicle. Mention was made that all 150 vehicles which will cost millions are already pre-sold, two years before launch. Aston Martin are celebrating their 100th anniversary. What a way to welcome in the next century of car manufacturing.
Automobile Journalists Association of Canada announced the car of the year, a great-looking VW Golf Alltrak and utility of the year was the Subaru Forester. Both are outstanding in their categories chosen from the top three in each category. Every year the decision for top vehicle gets more difficult as the quality of cars continues to improve and outstanding features become more important.
Some product launches that stood out in my mind are VW’s new SUV named Atlas and a newly styled Tiguan. It seems VW is aiming at E cars as well! The world premier of the Hyundai Accent was welcomed to lots of pizzazz, something to be proud of for the Canadian auto show.
Nissan had an amazing concept car and with the Rogue vehicle was the connection to their excellent promotion with the new Star Wars movie, a great tie in.
Cadillac showed off a radical looking Escala concept. BMW launched three new 5 series vehicles: M, hybrid and gas powered, quite the choice. There was a real surprise for M fans, a 7 series, the fastest Beemer!! All these vehicles are semi-autonomous. Yes, we are getting there, but who doesn’t still want to DRIVE a car?
Porsche showed off its racing breed. There was also a high performance Mecan and plug-in Panemera. Audi had four new models, all high-performance sports versions of various great vehicles. Mercedes also launched high-performance vehicles including an AMG S series and an amazing-looking green AMG-GTR. They are celebrating the 50th anniversary of AMG, the Mercedes sports division. I may seem biased toward the German manufacturers however they really put on a great show.
A surprise from GM who launched two new SUV products, was the Equinox TDI (diesel). Some other manufacturers are going to get on the diesel band wagon. Kia launched the all new Stinger. This vehicle looks like it will give quite a bite!! Wow what a fanfare for a great-looking rear-wheel drive high-performance car to compete with the German threesome!
EV sales are up some 66 per cent year over year. I will have more about them in my next article which will be more general in details and will include a section on EVs. Others of note included Volvo, Infinity and Lexus.
Jaguar/Land Rover are one of the main sponsors of the 2017 Invictus Games to be held in Toronto, a wonderful event for those injured in recent conflicts. It was a great day with a record number of product launches.