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Detroit Auto Show preview: Diesels, electrics, and hybrids

The Detroit Auto show next week is one of the most important events on the automotive calendar, and 2013 features some exciting new vehicles coming onto the market. 

By Antony IngramGuest blogger / January 12, 2013

A new Maserati Quattroporte car is displayed on the Promenade des Anglais in Nice, in this December 10, 2012 file photo. Fiat's luxury brand, Maserati, will unveil a newly redesigned Quattroporte sedan at the Detroit auto show, which begins on January 13.

Eric Gailliard/Reuters/File


Next week is the annual Detroit Auto Show, one of the most important events on the automotive calendar and increasingly a place for car companies to show off new green technology. Given consumer tastes and the trends in the market, it should come as no surprise that the list of green cars, whether we’re talking compacts, diesels, electrics or hybrids, grows longer with each running of the show.

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 For 2013 there are some exciting new vehicles coming onto the market, including some we never thought would be reported on here at Green Car Reports.
 Once again, our team of reporters will be on hand in Detroit to bring you all the breaking news, plus live photos and video footage.

 In the lead-up to the first press day on Monday, January 14, let’s take a quick look at some of the new cars and concepts scheduled to be unveiled.

Concept Cars

Honda Urban SUV Concept: Honda will preview a sporty subcompact SUV in Detroit that’s based on the Fit platform and could hint at the new styling direction for the Japanese automaker’s small cars. Honda hasn’t revealed many details on the concept, apart from a sole teaser image, though the automaker does mention that it combines the spacious and functional interior of the Fit with a more rugged SUV design.

 Via Motors X-Truck: Electric vehicle startups come and go, but it's harder to ignore one fronted by “father of the Chevy VoltBob Lutz. Yes, we are, of course, talking about Via Motors, which last year in Detroit debuted a Chevy pickup converted to electric power.

 Via has started taking orders for the truck though deliveries are yet to happen, though that hasn’t stopped the company from announcing several new models. One of these will be an extended-range electric pickup with more than 800 horsepower on tap.

 Toyota Furia Concept: We’re not sure if Toyota’s upcoming Furia concept will be a green car, but what we know from the few teasers released for it is that it will be a compact sedan with styling elements borrowed from last year’s NS4 plug-in hybrid sedan concept. We do know that Toyota’s Corolla sedan is due for an update soon, so perhaps this new Furia might be a preview.

Nissan Resonance Concept: Announced on Friday, we know very little at all about the resonance concept, other than the single line of info and moody picture Nissan has revealed. The Resonance crossover, says Nissan, fuses bold styling with a hybrid-electric powertrain... and that's about it. We'll bring you more when it's revealed on January 15.

Volkswagen CrossCoupe TDI Concept: The CrossCoupe concept is nothing new, having initially appeared at Geneva last year, but could VW be hinting at something by showing it again in Detroit? Time will tell, but quoted European economy of 130 mpg certainly gets our attention.

Hit the next page to see the long list of production green cars set to be unveiled at the 2013 Detroit Auto Show next week. And remember, you can catch our full Detroit coverage at any time via our dedicated show hub.

Production Cars

 When it comes to green cars that are actually coming onto the market in the near future, the list is surprisingly long. Some of the cars are redesigned versions of existing models or simply facelifts, but there are some exciting newcomers too.
2014 Cadillac ELR: The ELR can actually trace its roots back to the Converj concept car unveiled in 2009, which proved so popular it was almost immediately approved for production. GM’s bankruptcy at the time put those plans on hold but then in 2011 the Converj reappeared, this time labeled the ELR.

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