You can see tomorrow's cars today  in Detroit The new Ford GT is unveiled at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit (AP photos)
You can see tomorrow's cars today in Detroit
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The North American International Auto Show is going on in Detroit with media and industry previews and it opens to the public Saturday, Jan. 17.

Here are some of the new cars and experimental concept vehicles unveiled at the show:

HYUNDAI SANTA CRUZ CONCEPT: It's a crossover in front and a pickup truck in back. Hyundai surprised the auto show with the Santa Cruz, which brought to mind niche vehicles of the past like the Subaru Baja. The Korean automaker thinks the Santa Cruz will appeal to "urban adventurers" and women who occasionally haul stuff but don't need the capability of a pickup truck. The four-door concept seats five; the bed can expand to the size of a midsize pickup if needed. Under the hood is a 2.0-liter turbocharged diesel with 190 horsepower. Dave Zuchowski, Hyundai's U.S. chief, says the Santa Cruz could be on the road in three years if the company decides to make it.

FORD GT: Ford stunned the crowd with its new GT, a high-performance supercar. The lightweight, carbon fiber GT has a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 engine that produces more than 600 horsepower. The two-seater has deep, dramatic scoops in the hood and the sides and advanced aerodynamics, including a deployable rear spoiler. It's Ford's first GT in more than a decade and one of 12 new Ford performance vehicles coming to market by 2020. The GT honors the 50th anniversary of the original GT40's 1966 victory in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Pricing will be announced later, but Executive Chairman Bill Ford says it will be in the range of other exotic supercars like the $200,000 Lamborghini Gallardo.

ACURA NSX: The production version of Acura's NSX got a boost from Jerry Seinfeld, who was in Detroit promoting the supercar. Featuring a twin-turbocharged V-6 engine and a three-electric motor hybrid system, it promises total power output of more than 550 horsepower. The NSX can run in four modes that offer different performances, as well as variations in the engine's sound level. A team of 100 workers will build the car in Marysville, Ohio. Acura plans to start accepting orders starting this summer. The starting price is seen in the mid-$150,000 range.

ALFA ROMEO 4C SPIDER: This is a convertible version of the 4C coupe with a removable carbon-fiber hard top. It has a 1.75-liter turbocharged engine that puts out 237 horsepower mated to a six-speed dual-clutch transmission. The Spider and the 4C will be difficult to get. FiatChrysler says only 3,000 will be built by hand in Italy, and fewer than half of those will be convertibles. Pricing hasn't been announced, but expect the Spider to run between $60,000 and $85,000.

PORSCHE 911 TARGA 4 GTS and CAYENNE TURBO S: Porsche unveiled a pair of new offerings, including the 911 Targa 4 GTS that packs 430 horsepower and promises zero-to-60 mph acceleration in 4.1 seconds a hair faster than the current Targa S model. The sports car maker also showed off a Turbo S version of its Cayenne that it says completes the new range of offerings of the SUV, bringing 507 horsepower to the table.

VOLKSWAGEN CROSS COUPE GTE CONCEPT: It's Volkswagen's third concept previewing a seven-passenger midsize SUV. The goal is to start producing it in the U.S. at the end of 2016. Volkswagen says the five-passenger plug-in hybrid Crosse Coupe GTE, with its upscale, muscular design gives the clearest idea yet of the SUV's styling. Among its most prominent features is a wide, aluminum-framed air inlet below a narrow, two-bar grille.

MERCEDES-BENZ F015 CONCEPT: Mercedes is taking the idea of a self-driving car to a new, luxurious level with the F015, which resembles a silver capsule and made its debut at the consumer electronics show in Las Vegas. Dieter Zetsche, the leader of Mercedes-Benz, calls autonomous cars "the hottest next wave" in the auto industry. The roomy, lounge-like interior is loaded with high-resolution touch screens and offers an adjustable seating system with four rotating chairs.

INFINITI Q60 CONCEPT: Infiniti previewed the design of its upcoming Q60 coupe with a concept car, one with sharper, more precise styling than the current Q60, along with a more aggressive grille and narrowed headlights. Infiniti says the Q60 that will go on sale next year will be strongly influenced by this Q60 concept. With sales lagging, Nissan's luxury brand could use the boost.

GAC's GS4 SUV and WITSTAR CONCEPT: Chinese automaker Guangzhou Automobile is showing a fuel-efficient small SUV that's close to being sold, along with a self-driving concept car. The GS4 SUV will be offered with a 1.3- or 1.5-liter turbocharged engine. Also known as GAC, the company markets its cars under the Trumpchi brand and said it plans to sell the SUV in China starting in April, and parts of the Middle East, Africa, South America and eastern Europe in late 2015. The WitStar concept is designed to go more than 60 miles in electric-only mode (about 360 miles with use of a gasoline-powered engine) and would rely on lasers, radar, cameras and GPS for autonomous driving.

Critical thinking challenge: Why does the auto industry show its cars to reporters before showing them to the general public?

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COMMENTS (30)
  • JordanM-Sym
    1/16/2015 - 09:50 a.m.

    out of all the other cars i like the acrua nsx because of its incredible horse power of 550 and with a low price for a super car 150,000 dollars thats what i like about of it the only thing thats to low is it v6 engine if you think about it the dodge charger 2006 has a v6 engine to and its like a regular car.

  • IsaiahD16
    1/16/2015 - 10:38 a.m.

    I can't wait for the auto show to come. I go every year with my family. I really want to see the 2015 Ford Mustang GT. I really want to get one when I am older

  • GrantW-2
    1/16/2015 - 10:40 a.m.

    This article is about the Detriot auto-show and all of the cool cars there. At the show there is new concept cars and even self driving cars. My favorite is the Hyundai Santa Cruz which is a cross-over in the front and a pickup in the back. Another interesting car is the Mercedes F015 which is a self driving car. I am really interested in cars.

  • gerik15
    1/16/2015 - 10:49 a.m.

    I cant wait for the car show to open tomorrow I've been there twice and it was great experience, the new ford gt looks amazing i cant wait to see it.

  • NashMcComsey-Ste
    1/16/2015 - 12:58 p.m.

    These cars are indeed the wave of the future, but I wonder how many of these will be availible for someone with a budget of somewhere UNDER millions and millions of dollars.

  • Damikus123
    1/16/2015 - 01:03 p.m.

    I can't wait for the auto show to come. I go every year with my family. I really want to see the 2015 Ford Mustang GT. I really want to get one when I get older and a successful .

  • TehyaWhite-Ste
    1/16/2015 - 01:12 p.m.

    I think the cars are so cool honestly. However I think that nobody other than millionaires can afford them because they're so expensive, It would be really cool just to go and see them.

  • BColton-Sti
    1/16/2015 - 03:07 p.m.

    There is a convention going on for all of the new cars maybe going to come out in the feature. Dave Zuchowski, Hyundai's U.S. chief, says the Santa Cruz could be on the road in three years if the company decides to make it. I think that it is pretty cool that this can happen but what ever happened to the the cars coming out that year. Like they already are showing us cars that might come out in three years.

  • shelbyf-Man
    1/19/2015 - 03:37 p.m.

    Well, to be honest. I didn't really read this one. Therefore, i didn't get any of the questions right. I wish i would have, but i didn't have enough time. I thought you would have liked it if i put somethin' anyway. welp. here it is..

  • ShaniaWentz-Ste
    1/19/2015 - 09:24 p.m.

    This is so cool! I would love to pack up my things and head to Detroit to see these fascinating cars. Being able to predict the future of anything is already cool. But, being able to actually see these creations in real life is even cooler! I hope that I get the chance to see these cars sometime.

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