2007 Chicago Auto Show Highlights


Washington DC February 8, 2007; The AIADA newsletter reported that The Chicago Auto Show began media previews yesterday and will open to the public Friday.

USA Today reports a number of imports will be headline grabbers.

Volkswagen will display a reprised cult model, the R32, which it hopes will be a technology showpiece and an image-enhancer. The car, which goes on sale in August on a limited basis, is a high-performance version of VW's small Rabbit sedan, a step above the GTI performance model.

Toyota is enlarging its popular Highlander crossover SUV for 2008, The SUV mimics the redesigned Toyota Tundra pickup in offering a stand-alone backup camera that doesn't require you to buy an expensive navigation system as other makers do. The Highlander is due in showrooms in June and a gasoline-electric hybrid version is planned two months later.

In addition to the news about tweaking its big trucks, Nissan says it is working on diesel power for its full-size Titan pickup. Nissan product planner Larry Dominique says if Nissan decides to offer a diesel, he thinks it could be available before the end of the decade. He wouldn't specify what company would supply the diesel, but did say it would come from the U.S.

Diesels get 20% or 40% better fuel economy than similar size gasoline engines.

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