2014 Chevrolet Impala

Seven Vehicles from New York Auto Show That Will Be Important

After having spent a couple days at the New York International Auto Show media days, I've come away with a few impressions. OEMs are really focusing on fuel efficiency, design, and technology like never before. Here's a look at seven of the most important models from the show, which is the last major auto show in the U.S. until the Los Angeles Show in November.

Chevrolet Impala

This is an important new model for Chevrolet because the Impala is a popular car. The Impala was America’s best-selling full-size sedan in 2011, with sales of more than 171,000, which also made it one of the 10 best-selling cars overall in the United States.

Normally, it would be risky to makeover such a high-volume car but Chevrolet needed to do something. The Impala had a bland exterior and interior. Improvements to both will, I hope, remove the rental-car-fleet stigma from the Impala, truly an iconic nameplate, and make it a car people want to park in their driveways and not just in hotel parking lots when traveling for business.

Here is more info from the launch of the 2014 Chevrolet Impala.

Lincoln MKZ

The Impala isn't trying to resuscitate the Chevrolet brand but the Lincoln MKZ is. Time will tell if the American buying public embraces the new MKZ, which has stunning touches like a front grille inspired by a bird's wings and beautiful wraparound LED taillights.

This is a car that is going to look beautiful coming or going but is it going to be enough to stand out from a crowded pack of competitors? Lincoln needs it to. As one auto journalist I respect put it, "Why buy a Lincoln when you can buy a Ford that looks like an Aston Martin?" One Ford exec I spoke to didn't entirely refute that claim.

Read this interview with chief Lincoln designer Max Wolff.

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