Generally the New York Auto Show is endured, rather than enjoyed. Every marque serious about their newest metal has already pulled its sheets at Geneva, and New York is more of a mainstream, consumer-level nap of a show. Not this year. We didn’t see any new Lamborghinis or Ferraris, but so far we’ve gotten our share of the awesome, and if it’s a little more affordable than a Veneno, we’re not upset about it. Here’s a rundown of our favorites to date:
Around since 2009, and pulling acting gigs as a mute robot for years before that, the fifth generation Camaro was due for a refresh, and it got one. The rear taillights have fused from four to two, likely because they got tired of everybody comparing the new Corvettes to them, and the grille is narrower, likely because something other than the taillights needed to change.
But everybody’s forgotten about that by now, because the Z/28 has returned. Lost since 2001, the Z/28, is, of course, Chevy’s track-ready version of the Camaro, or at least it was in the early years, before emissions regulations made it nothing more than an asthmatic fundraiser. Chevy’s returning to their roots with the new version, and they aren’t screwing around. Pushing is a 7 liter LS7. That means 500 hp and 470 lb-ft.
They weren’t done, so they added more cooling, made the AC optional, pulled the blooming carpet out of the trunk, and left out the stereo. It’s 300 lbs lighter than a ZL1. There’s also a bit of extra aero, with a bigger spoiler, a front splitter, a rear diffuser, and a slash between the “Z” and the “28.” It’s an answer to the Boss 302 Mustang…which…isn’t being produced after this year. Nobody tell Chevy. I want them to keep making Z/28s.
The Kia Cub Concept is headed in the right direction, but we’re glad it’s still a concept. It’s a bit swollen and rounded, as if Kia is trying to bring back 1996 (the thought of which can induce motion sickness, so be careful), and it’s actually wearing an uber ironic hipster handlebar mustache because that’s so hot right now (but won’t be by the time a production version hits the streets). But the overall shape is well-balanced and pleasing, idealizing something between an original Mini and an EK Civic hatch. Plus, like any self-respecting concept, it has suicide doors!
Power comes from a turbocharged 1.6, which means 204 hp and 195 lb-ft, laced through a six-speed manual, like a proper hot hatch. That should line up nicely next to the Fiat 500 Abarth and probably one of the 87 Minis.
We’re not glad, however, that the Subaru WRX Concept is still a concept. First of all, look at it. Go ahead. Take a moment.
Unfortunately, that’s about all any of us can do right now. It’s really good at being a concept. That means no drivetrain specs (though there have been murmurings about the BRZ’s 2-liter, force-fed by an electric turbo), no production dates, no prices, no interior shots through the very opaque windows. Road and Track talked to Subaru product poobah Toshiro Masuda, who said that this wouldn’t conflict with the BRZ’s market. It seems slightly bigger, too, than the current WRX, which is a tired, confused car in desperate need of a refresh, and will soon be discontinued.
Also, this new one’s extremely beautiful. Don’t change a thing, Subaru.
We’ll have more from the NYAS tomorrow, so keep an eye out for it. Feel free to keep the other eye on that WRX…
Images courtesy Chevrolet, Kia, Subaru