Honda believes the minor styling and engineering changes planned for the 2007 Element will give its boxy SUV a youthful, sporty flavor. The suspension has been tweaked so that at least one Element model sits lower to the ground. Sales begin this fall.
The Elantra is an important car for Hyundai - its No. 2-selling vehicle in the United States behind the Sonata.
Hyundai says the redesigned 2007 Elantra provides more interior room than the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla. Also, the car is 2 inches taller than its predecessor for added headroom. Styling draws on the Sonata and Azera to create a family resemblance.
Power comes from a 138-hp, 2.0-liter inline-four. Standard features include six airbags and four-wheel antilock disc brakes.
Infiniti's G35 coupe and sedan receive midcycle enhancements for the 2007 model year. The changes include minor exterior styling changes, an interior upgrade, a horsepower boost and some added technology.
Jeep expands its lineup with the four-door 2007 Wrangler Unlimited and the 2007 Patriot, a crossover.
The four-door Wrangler Unlimited is based on the redesigned two-door 2007 Jeep Wrangler; sales of both begin this fall. The stretched Unlimited shares Wrangler's 3.8-liter V-6 engine. Wrangler models gain more off-road capability, a new frame and more ground clearance.
The Wrangler line will retain Jeep's core off-road image as the brand expands to crossovers for the first time with the addition of the Patriot and Compass.
Lexus will unveil a hybrid version of its LS 460 flagship. Although Lexus has not announced the name, it filed a trademark claim for "LS 600hL" last year.
In deciphering this name, it seems Lexus is going to combine its 4.6-liter V-8 with a hybrid powerplant to provide the equivalent power of a 6.0-liter V-10 engine, while maintaining the fuel economy of a small-displacement V-8. The powertrain will be offered only in the long-wheelbase edition, making the hybrid a superflagship, likely costing more than $90,000.
The 2007 CX-9 will be Mazda's biggest crossover vehicle. The interior is configured for three rows of seats. The CX-9 shares a front-drive platform, a 3.5-liter V-6 and a six-speed automatic transmission with the 2007 Ford Edge and Lincoln MKX. Mazda's suspension will be tweaked for a sporty ride.
The mildly face-lifted 2007 E class is expected to debut in New York. It features a restyled front fascia with three air intakes, a grille with wider ribs and new headlight and taillight treatments.
The styling for the redesigned 2007 Outlander is drawn from Mitsubishi's Pajero Evolution, the SUV that won the 2004 Dakar rally. The new Outlander is powered by Mitsubishi's new 3.0-liter V-6 that makes about 220 hp. A six-speed automatic transmission will be offered with paddle shifters. All-wheel- and front-wheel-drive models will be available.
The 2007 Outlander seats seven and is larger than the current generation. The 2006 Outlander seats five.
Bluetooth wireless technology and a navigation system will be offered.
Nissan's stand will be busy with two world debuts.
The redesigned 2007 Nissan Altima is the first Nissan built on the automaker's new D platform. Engineering enhancements include a new front suspension, upgraded rear suspension and improved body rigidity. The Altima's wheelbase is 1 inch shorter than the 2006 model, but Nissan says the redesigned car has the same interior space as the current model.
The 2007 Altima is the first Nissan to receive the automaker's new 3.5-liter V-6 engine and the first Nissan sedan offered with a continuously variable transmission. Nissan says the new V-6 engine will provide slightly more horsepower than the current 250-hp V-6. A six-speed manual transmission will be standard with V-6 and four-cylinder engines.
The car goes on sale this fall. A hybrid model goes on sale in the winter of 2007.
The major news among midcycle enhancements to the 2007 Maxima is under the hood: A continuously variable transmission will be standard. Exterior changes are centered around the restyled front grille, hood, headlights, and front and rear fascias.