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Your Guide to the 2012 NAIAS Overview

The latest news and product intros from Cobo Center.

by on Jan.09, 2012

The Acura NSX supercar concept.

Editor’s Note: This guide and its links will be updated regularly during the 2012 Detroit Auto Show.

No slight intended, but there aren’t many things that can fill the hotels, restaurants and conference centers of Detroit in the middle of winter – nothing, that is, like the annual North American International Auto Show, which is underway this week at Motown’s Cobo Center.

The annual event is a veritable candy store for automotive aficionados, bringing in most of the world’s largest manufacturers, from Acura to Volvo, and an estimated 10,000 automotive journalists and industry insiders, including top executives from all the major manufacturers.

(Lexus LF-LC and Ford Fusion win best concept, production design awards. Click Here for more.)

The Final Word!’s team has already begun pulling together the latest new and product reveals and we’ll be rolling out more by the hour over the next several days, so keep coming back for the latest.

Here’s a thumbnail guide to all the various products you’ll be seeing unveiled this week (Click on the highlighted names for the latest updates):

(Hyundai Elantra, Range Rover Evoque win North American Car, Truck of the Year. Click Here for more.)

Mini adds its sixth model with the 2-seat Roadster.





Acura. The maker will cover both ends of the luxury spectrum with the all-new entry-lux ILX and the return of the NSX supercar with a unique performance-oriented hybrid powertrain. The maker also updated its RDX crossover.

Amp. The Ohio-based start-up will roll out battery-electric conversions of both the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Mercedes ML – each offered in both all-wheel-drive and two-wheel-drive configurations.

Audi. The luxury subsidiary of VW will roll out a “design concept” of the Q3 Vail crossover, along with the new A4.

Bentley. The ultra-premium maker comes to Detroit to reveal its new V-8 in the Continental GTC convertible and coupe.

BMW. The big news is the U.S. launch of the next-generation 3-Series, along with the global preview of the Active5 Hybrid, as well as the first American showing of the M5.

Buick. The resurgent GM division introduces its fifth new model and second crossover in the form of the compact Encore CUV.

Cadillac's new ATS.

Cadillac. Intent on regaining its once-lofty perch Caddy comes to the 2012 Detroit Auto Show with the entry-lux ATS, complimenting the XTS premium sedan shown at last year’s L.A. Auto Show.

Chevrolet. The largest of GM’s divisions will reveal two new concept cars — the Tru 140S and Code 130 R — targeting the potential huge Millennial generation, along with the sporty new Sonic RS.

Chrysler/Dodge. The smallest of the U.S. makers hopes to gain ground in the fast-growing compact segment by bringing back an old name for the new Dodge Dart – its first offering jointly developed with Italy’s Fiat. Chrysler also showed off the 700 minivan concept that could redefine the classic “people-mover.”

Ford. The big news from Dearborn is the striking new Ford Fusion with which it hopes to challenge Japanese leaders Toyota and Honda for midsize market dominance; also on hand, the Focus Electric.

Honda. Hoping to regain momentum after a disastrous 2011, Honda will shoot for the gold with a new concept version of its ever-popular Accord Coupe, the production version debuting later this year.

Hyundai's Genesis Coupe.

Hyundai. The Korean maker aims to show its aggressive side with two new models: the face-lifted Genesis Coupe and the Turbo version of its new Veloster hatchback.

Lexus.Toyota’s luxury division weighs in with a slick new concept, the LF-LC, which is expected to be a targa-topped replacement for the aging Lexus SC430.

Lincoln. Ford’s luxury division reveals an all-new face with the much-anticipated MKZ replacement, which reportedly features such details as a rollback glass roof.

Maserati. Fiat’s sporty brand comes to Detroit with the Kubang, the new crossover that will share the same platform as the Jeep Grand Cherokee.

Mercedes-Benz. Lighter, more powerful and definitely an eye-catcher, the German maker pulls the cover over the latest version of its long-running SL roadster.

Mini.  The British marque will present the first American showing of its sixth model – and second convertible — the 2-seat Roadster.

Nissan. The Japanese maker comes to town with an all-new concept version of its popular sport-utility vehicle, the Pathfinder, which migrates to a lighter, more efficient crossover design. The maker also wants to double sales of its Leaf battery car in 2012.

The Porsche 911 Carrera Cabriolet.

Porsche. It may be winter in Detroit but Porsche clearly can’t wait for warmer weather to reveal the 911 cabriolet version of its seventh-generation 911 Carrera and Carrera S.

Scion.  Toyota’s youth-oriented brand enters the affordable roadster segment with the new FR-S, Scion’s take on the joint venture between Toyota and Subaru – which market its own version, the BRZ. Scion also showed a 600-hp racing version of FR-S.

Shelby American. It’s been 50 years since the legendary Carroll Shelby launched his Cobra and he’s celebrating at the Detroit Auto Show stand with three new, limited-edition Shelby Mustangs.

Smart. The microcar maker is two years from launching a replacement for the struggling fortwo  but will give a hint of what it has in mind with the for-us micro pickup concept developed with Renault’s help.

The Scion FR-S.

Toyota. The Japanese giant launched an all-new family of Prius-badged hybrids, including the big Prius v shown in Detroit last year. Now comes the downsized Prius c, with a Prius plug-in coming this year. One big surprise: the NS4, a dedicated plug-in hybrid concept.

Via Motors. With former GM car czar Bob Lutz on its board, no surprise this little start-up is focusing on a performance electric pickup — it claims to be the world’s first.

Volkswagen. The “people’s car” brand will come to Motown with a hybrid of the Jetta, along with an all-electric concept vehicle.

Volvo. The Swedes finally come to market with a gas-electric vehicle, their first hybrid based on the  XC60 crossover vehicle.

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