New York International Auto Show 2018: Fast Cars, New Crossovers, Millennial Appeal
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Hornet took a spin through the 2018 New York International Auto Show, in town from March 30–April 8, and perused the hottest new cars on the market. While there, we spoke to some of the industry’s leading auto reps about trends on the horizon and what makes their cars appealing to LGBTQ millennials.
The Lexus UX crossover made its North American debut at this year’s New York show, aiming to gain traction in the increasingly crowded compact crossover segment. It’s a segment that is quickly growing, as compact crossovers have acquired lots of love as opposed to their struggling sedan counterparts.
The brand-new Lexus will be made available in two versions: the UX 200 and the UX 250h. It comes standard with the Apple CarPlay infotainment system, lane-centering technology, automotive high beams and a system that helps detect pedestrians at night.
When asked about the car that’s most exciting for millennials, Lexus Product Marketing Senior Analyst Todd Blickenstaff told us, “Amazon Alexa, for sure. You can do things like car-to-home control, so if you’re in your car you can say, ‘Amazon, turn on my lights.’ You can also do home-to-car, so you can say ‘Lock or unlock my doors.’ You can even ask questions like, ‘How much gas is in my tank?’ or ‘How many miles can I drive?”
We also spent time with the good people over at BMW, exploring the BMW X2, a car that has been met with surprising admiration. It’s a funky little car, and its design is quite charming. The color we fell for is called Galvanic Gold, but the Misano Blue caught our eye as well.
Another BMW model we checked out was the BMW 3 Series. “One of the most attractive features is that not only is it a BMW and it looks great, but the size,” says John Shipley, BMW Product Manager. “This is a perfect compact size. It’s got great versatility.”
In regards to the 3 Series’ electronic capabilities, which seemed to be a burgeoning trend in many of the cars on display at the New York International Auto Show, Shipley pointed to the optional navigation systems and BMW ConnectedDrive, a feature unveiled in 2014 that connects your car to your phone via the BMW Connected app.
“It’s an app you can download to your phone,” Shipley says. “You can actually see where the vehicle is. You can send it destinations. You can check to see how many miles you have on the car, and even what your fuel level is.”
We also had the opportunity to introduce ourselves to the new sport sedan by Genesis, the G70. This small, sporty luxury sedan arrives in showrooms in the summer as a 2019 model, and we got our first up-close-and-personal look during its New York debut.
This Genesis model hopes to peel away some customers from the Audi A4, BMW 3 Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class. Inside, the G70 is trimmed with Nappa leather, brushed aluminum, stainless steel speaker covers and plenty of stitched, soft-touch surfaces. A 15-speaker Lexicon surround sound system comes optional, and for safety, forward collision avoidance with pedestrian detection, lane keep assist, blind spot monitoring and driver attention warning are standard.
“It’s light and very nimble,” Kevin D. Smith, Senior Group Manger of PR and CSR for Genesis, explained to us. “Excellent handling, so you can avoid all the near collisions you may have in the city driving.”
Seems like a must for all those city-dwelling millennials out there.