2018 N.Y. Auto Show: The hits and misses

The 2018 New York International Auto Show is clearly a busy one, overtaking this year’s Detroit Auto Show in terms of the number of overall reveals and new vehicles on display. And while electrification and hybridization remain part of the buzz, it’s obvious that crossovers still lead the way.

We’ve rounded up the thoughts and opinions of the DigitalTrends cars team to bring you what we thought were the hits and misses of this year’s New York Auto Show.

What we liked

Genesis Essentia Concept: “At a show largely lacking flashy concept cars, the Genesis Essentia added some much-needed wow factor. It’s the kind of over-the-top showpiece that inspires hope about the car’s electrified future.”

2019 Nissan Altima: “With the 2019 Altima, Nissan is not only fielding another Honda Accord/Toyota Camry competitor, it’s making the case for sedans over SUVs. That’s a great thing to see.”

2019 Cadillac CT6 V-Sport: “The Audi RS 5 Sportback is parts sports car, parts family hauler. It’s a different take on the concept of the compact performance sedan. Call me guilty, but I think I like it better than the RS 5 coupe.”

— Stephen Edelstein


Genesis Essentia Concept: “Some concept cars are thinly veiled production vehicles, missing only a set of street legal tires or taller door mirrors before they’re ready for a dealer showroom. Then there’s the Genesis Essentia Concept — a 2+2 vision of the luxury brand’s future, brimming with technology, carbon fiber, and translucent body panels. While a near production-ready concept is a clearer look at what’s to come, a truly off-the-wall creation like the Essentia stretches our imaginations and sets the tone for Genesis amid a competitive pool of luxury automakers. It also has billionaire doors, so, you know, how could we not love it?”

Miles Branman


2019 Audi RS5 Sportback: “The Audi RS 5 Sportback is parts sports car, parts family hauler. It’s a different take on the concept of the compact performance sedan. Call me guilty, but I think I like it better than the RS 5 coupe.”

Ronan Glon


2019 Porsche 911 GT3 RS w/ Weissach Package: “Even though its vibrant paint will likely give you radiation burns, the Porsche 911 GT3 RS with its Weissach Package is a lean, mean, green machine, but not the kind meant for the environment. Instead, it’s a big middle finger to all the trends for electrification, turbocharging, and all other forms of automotive conservatism. And for that, I love it.”

2019 Nissan Altima: “The soon-to-be-outgoing Altima was really beginning to show its age and in dire need of a complete makeover. But the newest one by Nissan looks like it gives the company’s midsize sedan offering the overhaul it sorely needed. And it looks sharp!”

2019 Genesis G70: “I seriously just can’t wait to drive this thing.”

2019 Lincoln Aviator:  “Word on the street is that it’s near production-ready. I can’t wait to see it on the road, and with its Mustang platform-based roots and rear-wheel drive architecture, it’s promising to be great to drive as well.”

— Chris Chin

What we didn’t like

2019 GMC Sierra AT4: “The AT4’s subdued exterior styling is more appealing than some other Sierra variants, and buyers will probably appreciate being able to get a lifted truck with a factory warranty, but the AT4 seems a bit mild compared to the Ram 1500 Rebel, let alone the Ford F-150 Raptor.”

2019 Toyota RAV4: The RAV4’s relentlessly angular exterior styling tries to ape traditional body-on-frame SUVs, and it’s hard to see the point of that. This car-based crossover is no off-roader, and the styling doesn’t look particularly attractive either.”

2019 Kia K900: “You have to admire the ambition behind the K900 but, between the somewhat anonymous styling and the loss of the previous-generation model’s V8, this big luxury sedan doesn’t make a very strong first impression.”

— Stephen Edelstein


2019 GMC Sierra AT4: “Although pretty badass looking, the GMC Sierra AT4 seems a little too much like a half-baked effort toward a true Ford F150 Raptor, which I’d love to see from at least one of GM’s truck divisions. Thus, it just seems a little bit underwhelming for an off-road inspired truck.”

2019 Audi RS5 Sportback: “Bring back the V8!”

— Chris Chin


2019 Hyundai Santa Fe: “Once upon a time, the only reason someone would choose a Hyundai would be to save some money. These days, Hyundai vehicles are consistently among the best in class based on quality and features. At this year’s New York Auto Show, the Korean automaker unveiled its latest SUV (and what should have been another hit for the brand), the 2019 Santa Fe. Though we’re excited about the inclusion of a new turbodiesel and eight-speed automatic transmission, something about the Santa Fe’s new design direction doesn’t sit well with us. The gaping grill, harder lines, and somewhat ambiguous cues forfeit the current car’s friendly aesthetic and recognizable styling.”

— Miles Branman


2019 Hyundai Santa Fe:  “The Hyundai Santa Fe’s styling doesn’t do it for me. The front end looks like a bigger version of the Kona, with the helmet-inspired eyes in the form of running lights and the tall, wide grille. The back end looks like a downsized version of the Nissan Armada.”

— Ronan Glon

The views expressed here are solely those of the author and do not reflect the beliefs of Digital Trends.

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