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Unofficial guide to the automotive future
By Jeff Bartlett
Motor Trend

2004 Acura CL : Coupe twin to the TL sedan will be discontinued in the fall, with no 2004 model.

2004 Acura NSX : Despite continued rumors of a redesign, the NSX may continue with small changes.

2004 Acura RL : The RL lives on in current form with minor updates. Big news was the RL became the first luxury sedan to offer both a navigation system and XM Satellite radio as standard equipment. The downside is, the RL remains the weakest-powered luxury contender with a 225-horsepower V-6 and four-speed transmission in a V-8, five-speed segment. The new voice-recognition nav system features 130 verbal commands, new graphics, database with seven million points of interest, and a seven-inch monitor. The XM radio works with a 10-speaker Bose system with a six-disc CD changer. Other interior enhancements for 2004 include a redesigned center console and steering wheel, along with fresh brushed metal and wood trim accents.

2004 Acura TL : Acura unveiled the thinly disguised "concept" version of its all-new flagship TL sedan at the NY auto show, though history has shown that the luxo division's concepts are quite close to reality. A more striking design than the current, conservative TL, the show car features deep character lines along the doors and rear quarters that will help distinguish this model from the TSX sedan. This TL measure several inches shorter than the 2003 model, giving the car a tighter, tauter appearance. The TL concept features 19-inch wheels, Brembo brakes, and high-pressure air nozzles in place of windshield wipers. Few production details were released, though officials proudly revealed that the high-tech 2004 TL will have the first automotive application of DVD Audio 5.1, along with Bluetooth wireless connectivity, and XM Satellite Radio.
 

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2004 Acura TSX : With the TSX, Acura has plugged the hole left by the departed Integra sedan. Serving as the four-door complement to the RSX coupe, the TSX boasts a 200-horsepower four-cylinder engine with an available six-speed manual or five-speed Sequential SportShift transmission. Handling is maximized through a four-corner double-wishbone independent suspension, Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA), and 17-inch all-season performance tires. Lux features befitting an Acura include perforated leather seats, moonroof, dual-zone climate control system, 360-watt audio system with six-disc CD changer, High Intensity Discharge (HID) headlamps, and essential power amenities.

2004 Aston Martin DB7 Speedster : Aston will apply the "Speedster" formula to a special DB7 convertible targeted to the U.S. market by replacing the rear seats with styling bulges. Interior will be dressed with race-style bucket seats and metal trim.

2004 Audi A3 : Redesigned for 2004, the A3 luxury hatch is expected to offer an entry-level alternative to the A4 in Audi's U.S. offerings. Worldwide, a total of five engines will be offered, ranging from a 1.6-liter/102-horsepower four-cylinder up to a 3.2-liter/241-horsepower V-6, all available in either front-drive or all-wheel-drive configurations. The performance-enhancing, fuel-efficient direct-shift gearbox introduced on the Golf R32 will be available with some engines, offering a premium six-speed Triptronic transmission. Luxury features like independent suspension, Electronic Stabilization Program (ESP), Bose audio system, TV tuner, and electronic climate control ensure it lives up to the Audi brand character. United States may receive only the five-door model.

2004 Audi A4 : Coupe be unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September, and be on sale in U.S. this year. A high-performance, 4.2-liter V-8-powered S4 coupe with 371 horsepower will soon follow.

2004 Audi A8 L : Employing Audi's lightweight aluminum body technology, the A8 L is 60-percent stiffer than its predecessor and is motivated by a 330-horsepower 4.2-liter V-8 that will propel the A8 L from 0 to 60 in 6.3 seconds. The A8 L will also feature a six-speed Tiptronic transmission with Dynamic Shift program (DSP). DSP reduces the number of gear shifts, rewarding its driver with a more dynamic and enjoyable driving experience. Naturally, the A8 L features quattro all-wheel drive; its Adaptive Air Suspension system offers continuous damping control.

2004 Audi allroad : The allroad will be offered with a 300-hp V-8.
 

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2004 Bentley GT : Volkswagen's answer to the Aston Martin V12 Vanquish, the Bentley GT coupe promises to push the premium marque to new heights of sophistication and performance. Under the hood, a 6.0-liter, twin-turbocharged W12 engine will produce 560 horsepower, delivered through the marque's first all-wheel-drive system. Performance claims put 0-60-mph times at 4.7 seconds and with a maximum speed in excess of 190 mph.

2004 Bentley MSB : VW-designed, midsize Bentley (MSB) introduced. Destined to be the Bentley volume model with a pricetag around $150K.

2004 BMW 1 Series : Despite rumors that the beloved "2002" nameplate would return, BMW has announced the new entry-level line will be called the 1 Series. Like all BMWs, these compact cars promise to be rear-drive, define sport in their category, and be well engineered. The 1 Series will be positioned between the Mini and the 3 Series.

2004 BMW 3 Series : The front end has been revised with a wider kidney grille, modified hood, tighter front apron, and new headlights. More than cosmetics, these high-tech lamps can now follow the road directed by data from steering angle and direction, road speed, and yaw rates. At the rear, the taillamps feature adaptive braking light technology enabling the intensity to reflect the braking input. Full-on emergency braking will have the taillamps illuminated as brightly as the dedicated brake lights. The coupes and convertibles will now come standard with a six-speed manual transmission, and the six-speed Sequential Manual Gearbox offered on the M3 will be optional.

2004 BMW 5 Series : Redesigned. Codenamed E60, the next 5 will be offered in traditional sedan and wagon configurations. Engines in the 5 Series portfolio include 3.0L I-6, twin-turbo 3.0L I-6, 3.6L V-8, and 4.5L V-8. The 5 will have available the iDrive system introduced on the latest-generation 7 Series. For 2005, BMW will introduce a 500+ horse, V-10-powered M5 with a six-speed manual or sequential gearbox.

2004 BMW 6 Series : A new 6 Series coupe and convertible will be built off the next-generation 5 Series platform. We hear the M-tuned version may use a 5.0-liter V-10, though the V-8-powered 645Ci should still offer potent performance.

2004 BMW M3 CSL : The CSL weighs in at 243 pounds lighter than a traditional M3 through the use of exotic materials, like carbon fiber and sheet molding compound (SMC). The roof, front air dam, and rear diffuser are all made of a carbon-fiber reinforced plastic. The hood is aluminum, decklid SMC, and rear glass is extra thin. Digging deeper into the car, engineers shaved ounces through clever means, like using a paper honeycomb "sandwich" panel for the trunk floor. The weight savings is complimented by a prodigious power gain to 360 horses. Handling is significantly advanced through wider track, modified suspension geometry, and 19-inch Michelin Pilot Sport Cup tires. Factor in an SMG transmission with track mode, and this is BMW's ultimate driving machine.

2004 BMW M Roadster : An M version of the Z4 is expected for the 2004 model year, boasting a 3.2-liter/333-horsepower inline six engine, six-speed manual transmission, M-tuned suspension, upgraded brakes, destinct fascias and wheels, and M-ized interior.

2004 BMW X3 : Slotting between the 3 Series wagon and the X5, the X3 will give BMW a near-lux sport/ute in a volume segment of the market. The xActivity concept vehicle gives a good look at the X3 to come.
 

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2004 Buick Rainier : Buick inherits the Olds Bravada. Built on the same GMT-360 platform shared by the Chevy Trailblazer and the GMC Envoy, the Rainier will offer comfortable seating for five. Powered by a 275-horse, inline-six paired with a four-speed automatic, the Rainier can tow more than 6200 pounds. An optional 5.3-liter V-8 engine will be available at a later date to boost horsepower to 285 hp, putting the Rainier on strong footing with Lincoln and Mercury competitors.

2004 Buick Rendezvous : Updated inside and out, the Rendezvous Ultra also benefits from new 3.6-liter/245-horsepower V-6 engine.

2004 Bugatti EB 16-4 Veyron : The radical 2004 Bugatti EB 16-4 Veyron boasts an 8.0-liter W16 engine from parent VW, cranking out 1001 horsepower with four turbochargers. Price for this exotic will be $750,000, plus tax.

2004 Cadillac CTS-V : The CTS-V formula is as simple and brilliant today as it was back in the 1960s; take the corporation's most powerful car engine and fit it into a midsize sedan. Translation: the LS6 V-8 from the Corvette Z06 transplanted to the CTS near-lux sedan, complete with 400 horsepower and 390 lb-ft of torque. The OHV engine is backed with a six-speed Tremec T56 manual transmission, with the Sigma platform fortified with four-piston Brembo disc brakes, 18-inch wheels, sport-tuned steering, significantly revised suspension, and multi-mode StabiliTrak. The exterior features both cosmetic and practical enhancements, with a new fascia featuring an air splitter and brake ducts. The interior boasts numerous exclusive enhancements, including unique instrument panel, three-spoke steering wheel, and satin-finish metal trim. CTS-V production is slated to begin in the fourth quarter of 2003. Base CTS models benefit from a new "high-feature" 255-horsepower V-6.

2004 Cadillac SRX : The three-row "luxury activity vehicle" will boast both enhanced "high-feature" V-6 (shared with 2003 CTS) and Northstar engines (shared with XLR). The approx. 260-hp V-6 will be available with a manual transmission. The DOHC V-8 will produce 315 hp with 310 lb-ft of torque. The SRX will be offered with rear-drive and all-wheel-drive variations and three-row seating. It measures 195 inches long, 66 inches tall. Trick feature: dual moonroofs, with a massive front portal and a smaller, tilt-up unit to the rear.

2004 Cadillac XLR : Based on the sharp-edged Evoq roadster concept, the high-performance XLR convertible will spice up the Cadillac brand image in 2003. The 330-horsepower XLR shares its chassis with the next-generation Corvette.

2004 Chevrolet Astro : Long in the tooth, the rear-drive minivan's future is unclear. Some sources indicate that it could be redesigned around 2004, while others suggest it may be dropped. Filling a distinct niche, a next-generation Astro could capitalize on its tough, rear-drive traits that make it better suited for towing, conversions, and commercial applications. Sources agree that this is the last year for the current minivan.

2004 Chevrolet Aveo : Chevrolet will expand its range to compete in the entry-level market with the Aveo in fall 2003, competing against the Hyundai Accent, Kia Rio, and Toyota Echo. The Aveo is the first fruit from the General Motors acquisition of Daewoo's automotive arm to be integrated into a GM brand product line. The South Korean-built car was penned by Italdesign, and it will be offered in four-door and five-door configurations. Power for the thrifty machines comes from a 1.6-liter inline four producing 105 horsepower. Already on sale in Korea, the Aveo will be in the $9500-$13,000 range when it goes on sale in the States.

2004 Chevrolet Colorado : Bigger, tougher, more refined, and more powerful, the Colorado will push the compact S-10 pickup into retirement when it goes on sale late this fall. The Colorado will be offered in nine model configurations, with three cab styles (standard, extended, and crew) and three suspension packages. The powertrain belongs to the Atlas engine family, first introduced with the inline six found in the TrailBlazer. The Colorado will offer an engine choice of 2.8-liter/175-horsepower inline four and 3.5-liter/220-horsepower inline five. The rugged-looking pickup will be offered in two- and four-wheel drive, with a shift-on-the-fly system. Upscale offerings will include roof rail side airbags, heated seats, OnStar, XM Satellite Radio, and standard anti-lock brakes. The S-10 Crew Cab will continue through 2005.

2004 Chevrolet Impala SS : Under its sheetmetal is a supercharged, 3.8-liter/240-horsepower V-6 along with a beefed-up four-wheel independent suspension and high-performance speed-rated tires encircling 17-inch diamond-cut cast-aluminum wheels. Chevy promises the Impala SS will return true to its legacy as a fun-to-drive midsize sport sedan that provides performance for enthusiasts with room for five, plenty of cargo space, five-star safety, and plenty of amenities.

2004 Chevrolet Malibu : Built on GM's new Epsilon platform (shared with Saab 9-3), the all-new Chevy Malibu makes significant advances over the current model with bold styling, increased creature comforts, and additional refinement. To appeal to consumers of all sizes, the Malibu driver's seat configuration allows flexible adjustments to seat height, steering wheel tilt/telescope, and pedal placement. The five-seat midsize sedan will be offered in three trim levels, with both cloth and leather interiors. Powertrains include a choice between a 2.2-liter/140-horsepower I-4 or a 3.4-liter/200-horsepower V-6 engines. Produced in Kansas, this American sedan will go on sale third quarter 2003.
 

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2004 Chevrolet Malibu Maxx : Chevrolet's Malibu Maxx is based on the all-new 2004 Malibu and built on the first North American application of General Motors' popular Epsilon architecture (also shared with the Opel Vectra and Saab 9-3). The five-door extended sedan offers a cavernous interior lit by a standard rear fixed glass skylight, promising first-class comfort at the price of a coach-class ticket. Underhood is a 3.5-liter/200-horsepower V-6 mated to a four-speed electronic-shift transmission; standard equipment includes electric power steering, driver information center, power adjustable pedals, and rear HVAC. The Malibu Maxx offers 22.8 cubic feet of cargo storage, nearly double that found in other midsize sedans, as well as a multi-functional cargo panel that allows two-tier loading or can be converted to a table top for tailgating or picnics.

2004 Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS : A contemporary interpretation of the legendary SS formula, the 2004 Monte Carlo offers enhanced power and responsive handing, thanks to a 240-horsepower 3800 Series II V-6 engine with 90-cubic-inch supercharger, sport-tuned four-wheel independent suspension, and high-performance wheels and tires. Monte Carlo Supercharged SS benefits from MacPherson struts at all four corners, variable-rate power rack-and-pinion steering, electronic traction control, and large-diameter four-wheel disc power-assisted braking with ABS. The Supercharged SS also will feature a race-inspired spoiler, bright stainless steel dual exhaust tips, fog lamps, a six-gauge cluster including boost gauge, and "Supercharged SS" exterior and interior badging when it goes on sale this summer.

2004 Chevrolet Corvette : A Commemorative Edition Z06 will celebrate Le Mans victories with a distinct blue with silver treatment akin to the new C5-R race car. The car will boast the first painted, production carbon-fiber component offered on a car in the U.S. This special hood will save over 10 pounds. All Z06s will benefit from revised shock tuning.

2004 Chevrolet TrailBlazer : Line receives exterior update.
 

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2004 Future Vehicle Forecast
2004 Chrysler Crossfire : Beyond its gorgeous appearance, the Chrysler Crossfire appeals with its rear-drive configuration. Under the hood is a 3.2-liter/215-hp SOHC V-6 engine available with a six-speed manual or five-speed automatic transmission. The suspension uses an independent double wishbone set up in front and a five-link configuration for the rear. Remaining faithful to the original concept vehicle, the Crossfire will be built early 2003 in Germany in cooperation with Karmann.

2004 Chrysler Pacifica : The prestigious Pacifica merges car manners and sport/ute versatility into a lux-themed big brother to the PT Cruiser. Segment busting features include three seating rows, all-wheel drive, side airbags for all passengers, rear audio/DVD entertainment center, power liftgate, and power adjustable pedals. Other goodies include hands-free phone, navigation system, and tire-pressure monitoring system. Motive power is served from a corporate 3.5-liter/250-horse V-6, ensuring satisfying punch. A sub-$30K model expected to be added to range in the fall.


2004 Chrysler PT Cruiser : Due to strong interest in the PT Cruiser convertible, DCX has greenlighted the "cabrio" for production, with on-sale expected in early 2004. This news may help with the business case for a two-door Panel Cruiser and other variants. The convertible is expected to be offered with both the 150- and 215-hp engines. The PT Turbo will be offered in a more affordable configuration, requiring fewer premium features to obtain the hot motor.

2004 Chrysler Sebring : Sedan and convertible receive exterior freshening, giving them a more corporate face.

2004 Dodge Durango : Termed a concept, the muscular, midsize sport/utility vehicle shown at the Detroit auto show gives a clear picture of the second-generation 2004 Durango. Dodge admits the exterior is 85-percent production correct. Brash fender flares, Ram-inspired cross-hair grille, and snarling hood nostrils declare that "sport" is at the heart of this SUV in the form of a 345-horsepower V-8. The suspension features an independent front setup and solid axle with coil springs in the rear, with a Watts link system. Larger than the current Durango, the "concept" is three inches longer and taller, offering increased passenger space and the ability to fit a 48-inch-wide sheet of plywood inside. The new Durango will have less mechanical connection with Dakota, and a closer connection to the Ram.

2004 Duesenberg 21 : The classic luxury marque may return with limited production of hand-built cars.

2004 Ferrari Enzo : Priced at just under $700,000, all 399 of the Enzos expected to be produced have already been spoken for. The 6.0-liter V-12 produces 660-horsepower -- enough to propel the 3000-pound Enzo to speeds well in excess of 200 miles per hour. Ferrari also claims the Enzo can race 0-60 mph in 3.6 seconds! Exotic materials, dynamic lines, and pure-blood pedigree make this F1-inspired machine the fuel for 21st-century automotive dreams.

2004 Ferrari 456 : Redesign.

2004 Ford Econoline : Appearance will be updated and more fuel-efficient engines introduced.

2004 Ford Escape : Styling freshened. Continuously variable transmission offered.

2004 Ford Explorer : Both engines available on the 2004 Ford Explorer, the 4.0-liter V-6 and the 4.6-liter V-8, will feature "drive-by-wire." A number of other technologies to be introduced on the 2004 Explorer also help improve its fuel economy by reducing friction and parasitic energy loss. These technologies include coated pistons, torque converter upgrade, electronic returnless fuel system, low-rolling-resistance tires, synthetic rear axle lube, and an advanced exhaust gas return (EGR) system. The fuel economy gain will be about one mile per gallon compared to the 2003 ratings.

2004 Ford F-150 : The all-new F-150 draws design influence from the Super Duty and Expedition to create a tough, modern truck that makes a marked advance over the current best-selling pickup. The basic configurations include Regular Cab with rear-swinging cargo access doors; SuperCab with second seating row; and SuperCrew with four full-size doors. The cargo box will be offered in Styleside and Flareside forms with three bed lengths: 8, 6.5, and 5.5 feet. The interior transformation is equally as dramatic as the exterior, raising the standard for truck dash design. Most every element is bigger and better, with a nine-times stiffer frame, deeper cargo box, larger cabins, and more potent powertrains. Two engines will be offered, a 4.6-liter/231-horsepower V-8 and a three-valve 5.4-liter/300-horsepower V-8. The current-generation F-150 will continue production for at least a year as the factories ramp up production of the all-new F-150 and its many variants.

2004 Ford F-150 Heritage : The current-generation F-150 will continue production for at least a year as the factories ramp up production of the all-new F-150 and its many variants.

2004 Ford F-Series Super Duty : The mighty Super Duty truck has been selected for a special edition to commemorate both Ford and Harley-Davidson's 100th anniversaries. The outfitted truck will be painted a striking orange and black.

2004 Ford Freestar : Redesigned and renamed, the new Ford minivan promises more features and power than its predecssor. Powertrain highlights include a torquey 4.2-liter V-6 and new four-speed automatic. Other notables: fold-away third-row seat, side air curtains, and stability control system. On sale fall 2003.

2004 Ford GT : Ford will rush the GT into production for 2003 to celebrate the automaker's 100th anniversary. Originally named "GT40," the car will go by the name "GT" since Ford was unable to secure rights to the classic moniker. The GT employs an all-new aluminum spaceframe with a custom suspension, complete with horizontal dampers to permit the essential low profile. Between the rear 19-inch Goodyears rests a supercharged 5.4-liter/500-hp V-8 engine that out-muscles even the strongest of the original series cars.

2004 Ford Hybrid : Ford to offer a hybrid electric/gas-powered sedan.

2004 Ford Mustang : Ford will offer special-edition Mustangs to celebrate the 40th birthday of its pony car, as well as the Centennial of the brand. The 40th Anniversary Edition treatment will be available on Mustangs and Mustang GT coupes and convertibles. The package will be offered in three paint colors, and offers special performance striping, wheels, and interior enhancements. A total of 5700 40th Anniversary Editions will come to market in the fall, with pricing to be released closer to the on-sale date. Other 40th Anniversary models will include a limited production SVT Mustang "MystiChrome" Cobra, as well as a 305-horsepower Mach 1.

2004 Ford Ranger : Redesign expected, though no concepts revealed.
 

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2004 GM Hummer H2 SUT : Spun off from the 2003 GM Hummer H2, the H2 SUT (sport/utility truck) took the New York Auto Show by storm when it opened the show in a dramatic display of its commanding nature. It's powered by GM's 6.0-liter Vortec 6000 V-8 mounted longitudinally and mated to a heavy-duty five-speed auto tranny with full-time all-wheel drive. A folding "bulkhead" at the rear of the passenger compartment allows for flexible seating and storage options, similar in function to the midgate in the Chevrolet Avalanche.

2004 GMC Canyon : Destined for production by year-end, Canyon offers a choice of two Vortec engines, the standard 2.8-liter/175-hp Vortec inline four-cylinder or an optional 3.5-liter/220-hp inline five-cylinder powerplant, linked to either a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission. Space and function options are many, as the truck is available with two- or four-wheel-drive; regular, extended, or crew cab configurations; and with a choice of heavy-duty or offroad suspension. Canyon's 6-foot cargo box (5-foot cargo box on crew cabs) also features two-tier loading and a locking tailgate. The Sonoma Crew Cab will continue through 2005.

2004 GMC XUV : With a touch of a button, the Envoy XUV converts the sport/ute's cargo area from fully enclosed to open-air. Along with its exclusive power-sliding rear roof, Envoy XUV's Midgate adds to the versatility. Standard power for the XUV comes from an all-aluminum Vortec 4200 inline six-cylinder engine that delivers 275 horsepower and 275 lb-ft of torque. For those who require added towing capability, the available all-aluminum Vortec 5300 V-8 generates 285 horsepower and 325 lb-ft of torque. Production will begin mid-2003.

2004 Honda Latitude : Small wagon based on the Stream minivan, sold in Japan and Europe.

2004 Honda Odyssey : Redesign.

2004 Hummer H2 SUT : In spirit of Chevrolet Avalanche, an H2 variant expands the range with a pickup bed. The SUT joins the H2 wagon in spring 2004.

2004 Hyundai Accent : Will share platform with Kia Avella.

2004 Isuzu Rodeo : New Rodeo will be based on the GM GMT355 platform used for the new midsize Chevrolet, GMC, and Isuzu pickups. A diesel powertrain option is under serious consideration, playing off Isuzu's strength and the growing interest in fuel efficiency.

2004 Infiniti QX56 : Infiniti will build a full-size SUV at the Canton, Mississippi, plant on a platform shared with the Nissan Pathfinder Armada, though each will feature unique sheetmetal and interior. Expect a 5.6-liter V-8 powertrain, AWD, and generous amenities.
 

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2004 Jaguar XJ : Jaguar's new XJ body is manufactured almost entirely from aluminum for reduced weight and improved body stiffness. Its proportions have also been transformed; it is longer, taller, and wider than its predecessor for more interior space for occupants and luggage. Underhood, the new XJ will be available with a choice of two 4.2-liter V-8 engines: The supercharged V-8 in the XJR delivers 390 horsepower, while the naturally aspirated 4.2-liter/294-hp engine sits below it. The XJ features standard self-leveling air suspension, Computer Active Technology Suspension, Dynamic Stability Control, and four-channel anti-lock brakes. Pricing information will be available closer to its on sale date in Spring 2003.

2004 Jeep Wrangler : The TJ Wrangler will be updated with a fresh grille, new bodywork, and composite top. May adapt the 3.7-liter V-6 from the Liberty. A Scrambler "pickup" variant will be offered summer 2004.

2004 Kia Amanti : Luxury-trimmed sedan based on the Hyundai XG350. Powered by same 3.5-liter/195-horsepower V-6.

2004 Lamborghini Gallardo : Drawing its name from a famous fighting bull breed, the space-framed Gallardo is a snorting sports car with manners enough for regular driving, both on the open road and high-speed race track. It features a mid-rear-mounted 5.0-liter/500-horse DOHC V-10 that routes power through a six-speed sequential gearbox. The AWD Gallardo features a full, double-wishbone suspension at all corners, with weight distributed 42% front, 58% rear. Developed from an Italdesign-Giugiara style proposal, the Gullardo possess all the sleek elegance of a Lamborghini, complete with scissor-doors and unbridled ego modeled into metal.

2004 Lexus ES 330 : Lexus bumps displacement up from 3.0 to 3.3 liters, increasing power to 240 horses.

2004 Lexus GS : Rear-drive sport sedans to be redesigned for 2004 or 2005 model year.

2004 Lexus RX 330 : Lexus defined the emerging near-lux SUV segment with the launch of the successful RX 300 almost five years ago. Now, Lexus threatens to shake up the market with the longer, wider, taller, more powerful, and more luxurious RX 330. The numerical designation stems from the engine displacement, now 3.3-liters with a 10-horsepower gain over the 2003 RX 300. This V-6 is matched with a five-speed automatic transmission, enabling improved fuel economy and swifter 0-60 mph times. Numerous measures were taken to deliver a smoother, quieter ride, plus an optional air suspension can adjust ride-height based on speed and provide a "low" mode to ease access. Luxury features abound, with available Mark Levinson audio system, rear back-up camera, adaptive headlight system, and adaptive cruise control. The RX 330 will be the first Lexus vehicle built in North America.

2004 Lexus SC 330 : The SC range will be expanded with a base model, fitted with a 3.3-liter inline-six engine.

2004 Maserati Quattroporte : High-performance, luxury sedan introduced as Maserati returns to U.S. market. Maserati's 4.2-liter/385-hp V-8 supplies the power, tuned for more torque in this application. Price expected to be just over $100,000.

2004 Mazda Miata : Rumor has the Miata being next in line to receive the Mazdaspeed treatment.

2004 Mazda RX-8 : The 21st-century "RX-7" will be offered as a rear-drive sedan with "suicide" rear doors to ease passenger ingress/egress. The RX-8 is powered by Mazda's revolutionary RENESIS side-exhaust naturally aspirated rotary engine producing 210 horsepower with an automatic, 250 horsepower with six-speed manual. Signaling a sports car revival, the RX-8 is racing toward production on a platform that will be shared with the next Miata. On sale spring 2003.

2004 Maybach 57/62 : Well-heeled Maybach 57/62 customers will get personal attention from Mercedes-Benz dealerships that have elected to offer the reborn brand, in a separate studio where owners commission, rather than simply buy a car, much like it was in the 1930s. Like yachts, the model numbers 57 and 62, refer to the length, in meters, of each model. Pricing on the V-12-powered sedan may approach $300,000.
 

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2004 Mercedes-Benz C-Class : The C-Class sedan is now offered in more sporting models, with 17-inch wheels, performance-tuned suspension, and sporty bucket seats. The C230 Kompressor replaces the 2.3-liter/192-hp supercharged four cylinder with a 1.8-liter/189-hp engine, though the name remains the same.

2004 Mercedes-Benz CLK : The new CLK Cabriolet range will feature five different engine options throughout the world, offering an unprecedented selection of four-, six- and eight-cylinder engines ranging from 163 to 367 horsepower. The top-of-the-line CLK55 AMG boasts a 0-60 mph time under 5.4 seconds. Eschewing the popular folding hardtop used in the current SLK and SL, the CLK retains the soft folding top that is completely concealed when retracted at the push of a button or remote control. Premium features include Distronic intelligent cruise control, Linguatronic voice-control for phone/audio/navigation systems, and Thermotronic auto climate control with solar sensor.

2004 Mercedes-Benz S-Class : Premium luxury sedan to usher in a seven-speed automatic transmission that will be used in several Mercedes' vehicles.

2004 Mercury Monterey : Based on the same platform as the Ford Freestar, the all-new Mercury Monterey will feature heated and cooled front seats, fold-into-the-floor third-row seats, abundant safety technologies, and innovative Mercury features such as forward and reverse sonar parking sensors. Power comes from a 4.2-liter/200-horse V-6 mated to a fast-acting hydraulic automatic transmission, while stopping comes via front and rear vented disc brakes with standard ABS.

2004 Mercury Sable : Recent indications are that the Sable will separate from its Taurus fraternal twin, instead evolving from the new Mondeo or the Mazda 6. Either choice offers a more dynamic vehicle available in multiple body styles.

2004 Mini Cooper : Thanks to a vocal owner group, all Minis new and used will be outfitted with a working rear fog lamp. Bigger news: a convertible model is being sped to production.

2004 Mitsubishi Diamante : The Australian-built Diamante sedan is freshened for 2004 with an interior and exterior makeover, and the introduction of a sporty variant. A revised front end updates the Diamante with a new fascia, triangulated headlamps, split grille, hood, and fenders. Lines at the rear are integrated into the deck lid and bumper, and the tail lamps are treated to new lenses. Inside, a new instrument panel and center console dress up the interior with a fresh appearance and updated controls. Traditional ES and LS trims are joined by VR-X, the sporty model with a performance edge. The VR-X enhances the near-lux sedan with a sport-tuned suspension, low-restriction exhaust for a 5 horsepower gain, unique grille, fog lamps, rear spoiler, five-spoke wheels, white-face gauges, 270-watt audio system, and essential badging.

2004 Mitsubishi Endeavor : Mitsubishi expands its sport/ute offerings with a midsized crossover vehicle to slot above the car-based Outlander and rugged Montero Sport. Vying against the Honda Pilot and Toyota Highlander, the 190.2-inch Endeavor offers seating for five with 40.7 cubic feet of rear cargo space. The interior has a high-tech feel befitting a company that manufactures home entertainment electronics, complete with a 4.9-inch LCD information display. The Endeavor rides on a four-wheel independent suspension, and it will be offered in two- and all-wheel drive. Motivation comes from a 3.8-liter/215-horsepower V-6 with 250 lb-ft of torque.

2004 Mitsubishi Galant : Mitsubishi has completely revised the midsize Galant sedan to give it more power, more room, and more attitude. Twenty more horsepower are available from the 2.4-liter/160-hp SULEV engine found in the DE and ES models, or buyers may step up to 3.8-liter/230-hp V-6 in the LS and GTS models for even more performance. Dimensions have been stretched inside and out to make the new Galant one of the largest in its class, boasting more than 101 cubic feet of passenger room. And more attitude can be found in its dramatically redesigned appearance that features angular lines contrasted by a sweeping roof outside, and soft-touch materials with ice-blue illumination inside.

2004 Mitsubishi Lancer Sportback : Dipping onto its corporate heritage and parts bin, Mitsubishi is using its inhouse performance arm to push the Lancer into sporty territory. Priced under $18,000, the Lancer Ralliart will boast 160 horsepower (up 30 hp from base), sport-tuned suspension, improved brakes, body kit, Evolution bucket seats, and Ralliart interior trim pieces. Also, Mitsubishi will transplant the practical Lancer wagon variant to the U.S. market for 2004. The wagon will be offered in LS and Ralliart trim, each distinguished in dynamics and personality. Both Sportbacks are motivated by a 2.4-liter/160-horsepower SOHC MIVEC engine. The Sportback Ralliart packs a sport-tuned suspension, faster-ratio steering rack, more aggressive V-rated tires, anti-lock brakes, and tougher-sounding exhaust. The models are differentiated visually by the Ralliart's exterior treatment, with front spoiler, grille, tinted headlamp lenses, fog lights, side trim, and rear air dam.

2004 Mitsubishi Montero Sport : Redesigned. Off-road abilities to be emphasized in styling to distinguish it from the Endeavor.
 

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2004 Nissan 350Z : A superb driver's car, the Nissan 350Z has wooed the enthusiast public, garnering enough buyers to claim the title from the Chevrolet Corvette as the best-selling sports car. And that's before the coupe drops its top in summer 2003. Eager for open roads and sunshine, the Z Roadster has the same responsiveness and athleticism that has made the coupe so successful, yet adding more sensory input. The cloth top is released from or secured to the windshield header with a three-lock, single latch located directly above the middle windshield area. The one-touch power top raises or lowers in a modest 20 seconds. The Z Roadster will be offered in two trims, Enthusiast Model and Touring Model. The base Enthusiast version features power seats, rear wind deflector, 17-inch alloy wheels, xenon headlights, and automatic climate control. The Touring Model adds a Bose audio system with 6-disc CD changer and seven speakers, and leather-appointed seats with heater and heated mirrors.

2004 Nissan Maxima : Currently on sale, the new Maxima features a double wishbone independent rear suspension (finally) and a 3.5-liter/265-horsepower V-6 powering the front wheels. An odd optional "skyview" roof is longer, longitudinally, than it is wide. There's an optional 2+2 "Elite" package with buckets in back.2004 Nissan Pathfinder Armada : Nissan is tackling the domestic automakers with a direct assault in both full-size pickup and sport/utility vehicles. No protracted rollout or half measures here. The Armada set sail in New York, with the market attack to begin fall 2003. Supplementing the Pathfinder, the dramatically larger Pathfinder Armada features three seating rows, available in seven- or eight-passenger configurations. The Titan-shared interior feels more like a premium sedan than a truck, with its artful design and relatively lush materials. Every Armada includes four-wheel, ABS-equipped disc brakes with electronic brake force distribution and brake assist, and Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) system with Traction Control and Tire Pressure Monitor System (TPMS). A sophisticated, capable SUV, the Pathfinder Armada 4x4 uses all-drive technology derived from the Skyline GT-R for on-road and off-road traction, aided by a two-speed electronic transfer case.

2004 Nissan Titan : The Titan King Cab and Crew Cab pickups are built on an all-new truck platform and features Nissan's newly designed Endurance 5.6-liter DOHC V-8 that makes more than 300 horsepower and 375 lb-ft of torque. Mated to a standard five-speed automatic transmission it's got a towing capacity of up to 9400 pounds, and will be available in two- and four-wheel drive with standard power-assisted rack and pinion steering, along with four-wheel disc brakes with ABS. On the King Cab, the rear doors open nearly 180 degrees to allow easy access to a roomy interior boasting power-adjustable front seats with available driver's seat memory system, heated front seats, and flip-up rear seat. Production is scheduled to begin this summer.

2004 Nissan Quest : This latest attempt to shed the segment's soccer mom image from the Franco-Japanese automaker has more than a bit of Renault in its styling, but with a distinctive two-step shoulder line. Inside, the gear shift is on an instrument cluster pod at the center of the dash. Supple-looking red leather seats are in a 2+2+3 position, and the second and third rows fold flat. An optional sunroof splits the top into four glassed sections. Nissan says it has the longest wheelbase in its class, and sliding doors that are at least four-inches longer than the competitions'. Power is from a 3.5-liter/230-hp V-6. The Quest goes on sale this summer.

2004 Pagani Zonda S : Italian supercar sets its sights on the U.S. for a late 2003 introduction. A true exotic, the Zonda boasts a 7.3-liter AMG V-12 producing 555-horspower and weighs under 2800 pounds. Current price in Europe is $387,000.

2004 Pontiac Aztek : Last year for the controversial vehicle. Expect the nameplate to be retired when Pontiac seeks to offer a derivation of the next-gen Buick Rendezvous in the future.

2004 Pontiac Bonneville : Redesigned with a streamlined body devoid of body cladding and significant power increase from a 4.6-liter/285-hp Northstar-derived V-8.

2004 Pontiac Grand Prix : Redesigned on the front-drive Epsilon platform, tuned to offer improved handling and more responsive steering as the division benchmarks BMW for defining "driving excitement." Look for the distinctly Pontiac body to be devoid of ribbed cladding. Powertrains to include 3.8-liter/200-hp V-6 and 3.8-liter/255-hp supercharged V-6. New top-line features to include StabiliTrak Plus, F1-style paddle-activated four-speed manumatic transmission, and Saab-like "stealth mode" display that extinguishes the cluster lights to allow eyes to focus on the heads-up display. On sale April 2003.

2004 Pontiac GTO : The legendary "Goat" is back as the 2004 GTO signifies that performance and excitement will again rule the house at Pontiac. Fully leveraging the worldwide capabilities of the GM product portfolio, the next GTO is based on the existing Holden Monaro two-door coupe featuring a Corvette-based, 340-horsepower LS1 V-8 with either a six-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission driving the rear wheels. GM says stateside importation plans call for less than 20,000 GTOs for 2004 and may hint at other exciting overseas GM products migrating to North America. While pricing plans have not yet been formalized, look for a fully equipped GTO to sticker around $35,000 when it begins appearing in showrooms in the fall. Performance enthusiasts note: SLP is cooking up a 400-hp version, and so is GM Performance Division.

2004 Pontiac Vibe : Early 2003, Pontiac will offer a supercharger package for the Vibe.

2004 Porsche Carrera GT : The Carrera GT supercar features a 6.0-liter/612-horsepower V-10 and weighs just over 3000 pounds. Porsche promises a 0-60 mph time of less than four seconds and a redline above 8000 rpm. Production begins summer 2003, with the carbon-fiber-rich GT priced at $440,000. Given the track orgins of the V-10, a Le Mans race-variant is almost certain to follow.

2004 Porsche Cayenne Turbo : As if the long-awaited Cayenne wasn't hot enough, Porsche will offer a spicier turbo-powered version. Under the hood of this Porsche pepper reside eight cylinders working with two intercooled turbochargers to make 450 horsepower, allowing 0-62 mph sprints in 5.6 seconds and a top test-track speed of 165 mph.

2004 Porsche 911 : This fall, Porsche will offer a 911 Carrera 4S Cabriolet and a Cabriolet Turbo.

2004 Porsche 911 GT3 : Based on the previous GT3 not offered in America, the 2004 model features a naturally aspirated 3.6-liter/380-horsepower flat six. The significantly fortified powerplant can race the bi-winged 911 from 0-60 mph in a claimed 4.3 seconds, reaching 100 mph in 9.4 seconds, and peaking at 190 mph. Key to the high-speed limits is its improved aerodynamics, with exclusive wing and body work, and low 0.30 coefficient of drag. The GT3 is fitted with 13.8-inch, six-piston front brakes and 13-inch rear discs, providing more stopping power than the mighty 911 Turbo. Track-minded construction can be seen through the mechanical systems, with more durable engine components, concessions to heat management throughout, lightweight wheels, and only two leather buckets, all contributing to a stronger, lighter performance machine. The most powerful non-turbo Porsche ever offered in the States goes on sale in May priced at $99,900.
2004 Rolls-Royce sedan : BMW is developing a new car to launch when the German company assumes ownership of the Rolls-Royce brand in 2003.

2004 Saab 9-3 : Based on the new Epsilon platform, it shares much of its engineering with other GM products, and boasts a rigid body structure nearly three times stiffer than its predecessor, as well as an all-new suspension. Underhood is an all-aluminum 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine capable of making 155 or 210 horsepower (depending on configuration) linked to either five- or six-speed manual or optional "smart" automatic tranny with Saab Sentronic sequential shifting. The one-touch softtop fully deploys in 20 seconds, and for rollover safety its DynaCage system features pop-up rear roll bars and front seatbelt pre-tensioning. Expect it to arrive at dealerships in the fall.

2004 Saab 9-5 : All-new sedan based on the GM Epsilon platform.
 

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2004 Saturn Ion Red Line : Saturn targets the "2 Fast 2 Furious" crowd with its Red Line performance vehicles. The Ion Red Line four-door coupe will feature a supercharged 2.0-liter Ecotech four producing over 200 horsepower. Other modifications include a high-capacity radiator and fuel pump, sport-tuned shocks, larger-diameter brakes, and dynamically styled front and rear fascias.2004 Saturn Vue Red Line : The GM 3.0-liter V-6 is replaced by a Honda-sourced 3.5-liter/250-horse V-6 engine for 2004 that promises to propel the Vue 0-60 mph in about 7 seconds. The Vue Red Line will be available in both front- and all-wheel drive, and boasts a lower ride height and stiffer springs and sport steering calibration as well as aggressive 18-inch aluminum wheels wrapped in P245/50R18 Bridgestone Turanza performance touring tires for improved ride and handling. Appearance add-ons include new rockers, front and rear fascia, chrome exhaust tips, and exclusive badging.

2004 Scion xA : The xA is powered by a 1.5-liter/108-horsepower engine that is offered with a choice of either a five-speed manual or an optional four-speed-automatic transmission. The hallmark of the Scion brand will be the level of personalization that will be offered within the confines of the dedicated Scion showrooms set up adjacent to existing Toyota facilities as part of the company's effort to appeal to younger buyers whose hearts, minds and dollars have been won by Honda and Acura.

2004 Scion xB : The xB, the second Scion model expected to reach showrooms in June (starting in Southern California), is based on the cubist bbX compact minivan shown last year and already in production for the domestic Japanese market. Like the xA, it will be powered by the same 1.5-liter/108-horsepower engine and will offer a choice of the five-speed manual or optional four-speed automatic transmissions. While the base price is expected to start at under $16,000 for a well-equipped vehicle, Scion officials expect that most owners will personalize their Scions with appearance options and massive sound systems, something we saw at the 2002 SEMA Show where most Scions were outfitted with powerful aftermarket Pioneer audio and video systems.

2004 Subaru Baja : Subaru force-feeds more excitement in the beach-bound Baja with a intercooled, turbocharged 2.5-liter boxer engine, producing 210 horsepower and reaching a 235 lb-ft torque peak. Other standard features to appeal to weekend warriors include all-wheel drive, four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock, four-beam halogen headlamps, foldable side mirrors, foglamps with stone guards, full independent suspension, and 8.4 inches of clearance.

2004 Subaru Forester : The Forester gets a boost with a new higher-performance 210-horsepower turbocharged and intercooled 2.5-liter boxer engine. Due to arrive in showrooms this summer, the Forester 2.5 XT brings sporty performance to the small-SUV segment, and features four-wheel independent suspension, variable-ratio power rack-and-pinion steering, and 16-inch six-spoke alloy wheels and tires. Buyers may choose between a standard five-speed manual transmission and an optional new four-speed Direct Controlled Electronic Automatic Transmission.

2004 Subaru Impreza WRX STi : Subaru raises the sport compact bar with a 2.5-liter/300-horsepower DOHC turbocharged, intercooled boxer four in the WRX STi. The car's all-wheel-drive system features Driver Control Center Differential (DCCD) with a manual mode to allow the driver to adjust the power distribution front to rear. In addition, front and rear differentials further aid traction. Brembo disc brakes are at each corner, with the front boasting four-piston calipers. Well-featured for a car of its high-performance pedigree, this WRX does have several concessions to weight savings, such as aluminum hood, special rear glass, and no standard sound system.

2004 Suzuki Aerio : Power climbs to 155 horses.

2004 Suzuki Forenza : Expected to be priced in the $12,000 to $15,000 range, the Forenza sedan will compete with the Honda Civic, Nissan Sentra, and Toyota Corolla. Its edge will be value, with standard equipment including eight-speaker stereo with CD and cassette players, integrated audio controls on steering wheel, and four-wheel disc brakes. To find its position in the Suzuki line, the Aerio will be billed as the sporty range, with the 2.0-liter/119-horsepower Forenza being the mainstream choice.

2004 Suzuki Verona : Penned by Italdesign, the Verona pushes Suzuki into new territory with a midsize sedan that targets autodom's biggest sellers, the Honda Accord, Nissan Altima, and Toyota Camry. Wider than the Altima and Camry, the Verona has passenger space bragging rights over its competitors in several categories. The Verona will face off against the entry-level, four-cylinder models with a small-displacement V-6. The 2.5-liter aluminum DOHC engine produces a modest 155 horsepower and it is packaged with a four-speed automatic transmission. No manual trans will be offered. While it may not out-muscle the big dogs, the numbers the Verona will truly compete on include dollar signs, with the price range expected to be $16,000 to $19,000.

2004 Suzuki XL-7 : Minor facelift.
 

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2004 Toyota Camry Solara : An all-new Solara joins the recently reborn Camry sedan in the Toyota lineup this summer. Like the four-door model, the new coupe is larger, more powerful, and more refined than the car it replaces. The more sporty exterior suggests a more stimulating driving experience. An assertion supported by an available 3.3-liter/225-horsepower V-6 mated to a five-speed automatic sequential transmission. Interior space has increased 20 percent, and all three trim levels are distinguished visually by wood-grain, brushed aluminum, and graphite-accented trim. The SE model will be dressed with a five-piece body kit, leather trim, special gauge faces, and more aggressive 17-inch wheel/tire fitment. It will also include an enthusiast-oriented suspension.

2004 Toyota Prius : The car has grown for 2004, bumping the Prius from a compact to a full-fledged midsize sedan at 110 cubic feet interior volume. Horsepower climbs to 106, with 0-60 mph times dropping to the mid 10 second range, while fuel economy soars. Toyota boasts that the Prius will double the combined (city and highway) fuel economy ratings for any midsize car, and best that of any compact car. Emissions are 30 percent less than the SULEV (super ultra low) 2003 Prius, making it the cleanest car on the planet. Need more numbers? How about, coefficient of drag is 0.26 versus 0.29, it stretches 5.4 inches longer than the current model, cargo capacity is 16 cubic feet, and the new Prius carries 370 patents.

2004 Toyota RAV4 : Midlife freshening.

2004 Toyota Sienna : Redesigned model currently on sale.

2004 Toyota Tacoma : All-new Tacoma pickup is expected to grow incrementally in size, gaining extra doors on extended cab models. V-6 power to increase.

2004 Toyota Tundra : Toyota's new 230-inch-long Tundra Double Cab is significantly larger than the current Tundra Regular and Access Cab configurations. Its bed is nearly a foot longer than the current Super Crew model, and a full four inches has enlarged its depth as well. The Tundra Double Cab also offers the segment's first vertical power-sliding full-rear window and an optional power sliding moonroof.

2004 Volkswagen Golf R32 : Volkswagen elevates the Golf's sport compact status with the sizzling R32, offering more performance and prestige than any GTI. At the core of this special model is a 3.2-liter/241-horse V-6, routing its power through a six-speed manual, and ultimately putting it to the ground through an 4Motion all-wheel-drive system. The German automaker claims a 0-60 mph time for this tautly sprung model of under 6.6 seconds with a 153 mph top speed. Beyond gusto, the two-door R32 touts an extensive array of standard equipment, including automatic climate control system, premium sound system, rain sensor, heated seats, and Xenon headlamps. Ample leather and aluminum trim complete the upscale interior treatment.

2004 Volkswagen Touareg : With its base V-6, the luxurious Touareg is priced at just under $35,000, the same ballpark as V-8-equipped Explorers and Grand Cherokees, while the base V-8 model will start at $40,700. A 313-hp V-10 TDI engine will join the ranks summer 2004.

2004 Volvo S40 : Built on a platform shared with the next-generation Ford Focus. A Cross Country variant is expected. Launches in sedan form with five-cylinder engine, while the V40 carries over for another year.

2004 Volvo S80 : Volvo treats its flagship 2004 S80 sedan to a several mid-cycle updates. Most obvious, the exterior has been freshened with a restyled front fascia, grille, door mirrors, side molding, deck lid, and smaller taillamps with LED brake lights. Inside, the S80 benefits from redesigned door panels, instrument panel, interior trim, and optional three-spoke steering wheel. Also, the S80 will be offered with Active On-Demand AWD system borrowed from the S60, promising improved foul-weather performance and road stability. Essentially, the S80 will remain a front-drive vehicle until traction loss has the system route up to 65 percent of the power near instantly to the rear wheels. The S80 borrows the active Four-C suspension from the S60 R, providing the driver with Sport and Comfort settings, while working as a sophisticated load leveling system, as well.

Here is link http://www.motortrend.com/future/spied/112_2004fvf/index.html
 

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tsxclub said:

2004 Acura TL : Acura unveiled the thinly disguised "concept" version of its all-new flagship TL sedan at the NY auto show, though history has shown that the luxo division's concepts are quite close to reality. A more striking design than the current, conservative TL, the show car features deep character lines along the doors and rear quarters that will help distinguish this model from the TSX sedan. This TL measure several inches shorter than the 2003 model, giving the car a tighter, tauter appearance. The TL concept features 19-inch wheels, Brembo brakes, and high-pressure air nozzles in place of windshield wipers. Few production details were released, though officials proudly revealed that the high-tech 2004 TL will have the first automotive application of DVD Audio 5.1, along with Bluetooth wireless connectivity, and XM Satellite Radio.
Hmmm, I can't wait to see how the production one will look. From the pic of the concept, it just looks like a tricked out Accord.

If they make it shorter, won't that start getting closer to the TSX size?

I don't expect the 19" wheels and Brembo brakes to make it to the showroom. And "high-pressure air nozzles"? I doubt how effective these things would be to clean a windshield.
 

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I think that sucks that they are discontinuing the CL, with the new TL body style I think they could wip up a sick CL with the same looks.
 

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sublime3sixteen said:
I think that sucks that they are discontinuing the CL, with the new TL body style I think they could wip up a sick CL with the same looks.
My guess is that they will introduce the CL again in 2005 based on the new TL.
 
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