Friday, March 08, 2013

2013 Kansas CIty Auto Show: Refinement Rules

We interrupt our music reporting for the annual visit to the Greater Kansas City Auto Show. Even before I loved classical music, I was a car nut. By 6 I could tell you every make and model of car I saw. Usually the year too. It was easier then for sure, but I was still a bit of a prodigy.

This year's theme seems to be "Refinement" since there was little strikingly new. The annual model change, that kept this kid's eyes glued to passing trains, car carriers and car lots in hopes of being to see the latest model, has blurred so much that we saw a lot of this year's cars as previews last March. Noticeable was the lack of concept cars this year and fewer glimpses of 2014 and beyond models.

I do not know why the font on the captions gets all wonky at the end. I tried to fix it, but made it all worse.

Nevertheless, here are some highlights from the show:

Surprise of the show was the snarky new Chevrolet Impala. For some odd reason, I did not snap a picture so these are photos from the net. Sleek, powerful and with optional 4 cylinder engine, economical.
Front view of the new Impala
Slick Impala interior, the center section raises to reveal storage, USB port and power plugs for our mobile device ruled world.
On the other end of the model spectrum is the cute and versatile Chevy Spark. Roomy inside, better value than an IQ or Smart.
The new Buick Encore is a small, luxurious SUV. As many of the original SUVs such as the Santa Fe and the RAV4 have grown, there is room for a SUV like this.
Electrics were all the rage, they even had their own show area. This Tesla Model S is expensive, powerful and quite handsome. Motor Trend's Car of the Year. But some question its abilities and so far availability is limited.
Plug-in hybrid Fisker Karma. Built in Finland, company based in California. Like Tesla, mired in controversy and limited availability. Justin Bieber had a chrome plated one, he and his silly rich kid rappers and screamers wrecked it... twice.
Back to the Future... Tesla Model S and 100 year old Detroit Electric.
Ford C-Max was previewed last show, available now in hybrid and electric models.
Mystery to me... I recognize an oil dipstick. Ford C-Max Hybrid
I think this very same orange Toyota Prius was there last show. No one must have wanted  it... who could blame them?
Remember when a KIA Sportage was a little rat of a car? All grown up and  big for 2013.
Car so ugly only its maker and my friend Sherill who loves funky cars like it. See a lot around for some reason. 
Nissan had been missing from the show for several years, but they were back. Nissans have never lit my fire... ever. Good cars I guess, but just dull.
Greg commented that the $248,000 for the Mercedes SLS AMG Roadster was more than the combined total of the 3 houses he owned.
I see a resemblance to the 53 Hudson in the Veloster's front bridgework.
1953 Hudson Hornet, inspiration for the Veloster's grin?
Lincoln MKS, big luxo sedan. I miss the Town Car. At least they are getting away from the snarly front grille work of the last few years.
Lincoln MKT. To us in Missouri, MKT was a railroad. This big wagon/crossover/whatever is a road locomotive in every sense of the term.
All new MKZ. Grandson of the unlamented Zephyr. Nice.
Greg and I really liked the 2013 Dodge Dart. No one else seems to however, which is a shame.
Fiat's new 500L is a stretched 4 door version. This was pre-production model, even the lady doing the demo was not allowed inside. I did not care for it.

I said the Mini Coupe looks like a car wearing a ball cap. And this guy came along to make it all the more obvious.
The new Bug Convertible.
It pissed me to hell to read about some Hollywood director that blew up four 1949 Cadillacs for some stupid ass movie. Shameful. At least one will survive.

Lord God of the Road, 1931 Cadillac V16. Even the headlights reek of power.

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