Automakers brought their A-game to the 2017 New York Auto Show with a handful of aspirational SUV and crossover debuts. Now Trucks.com is calling out five introductions that are marquee-worthy attractions.
From record-setting performance utility vehicles to hopeful concepts, most of the reveals in New York aimed to deliver American consumers more utility and space. The irony of introducing extra-spacious vehicles, in one of the most densely populated cities in the U.S., is not lost on us.
But what this city lacks in personal space it makes up in luxury. These SUVs and crossovers all hit the mark when it comes to quality. Here are the five vehicles that will help set the tone for the auto industry this year.
- Subaru Ascent
Subaru introduced its Ascent large SUV design concept and confirmed the official moniker of its upcoming 7-passenger utility vehicle. The Ascent is a next step following the VIZIV-7 concept Subaru introduced last November at the start of the auto show season in Los Angeles. This SUV promises to be “huge,” as the company’s president and chief executive Tom Doll could not stress enough. The interior of the Ascent will provide both comfort and convenience in terms of storage and connectivity, and will have the latest in safety technology. This 7-seater tops off Subaru’s other two large vehicle introductions in New York, the new Crosstrek compact SUV and Outback wagon.
- Lincoln Navigator
Last year in New York, the Navigator Concept debuted with gullwing doors and teakwood steps. And while the production version doesn’t look quite as futuristic, it’s still progressive with an aluminum-alloy body, a 3.5-liter twin-turbo V6 engine with 450 horsepower and standard 10-speed automatic transmission. The SUV has improved noise reduction, increased towing capacity and offers seven different driving modes, including Excite, Conserve and Deep Conditions. The full-size luxury SUV can seat up to 8 people and has configurable cargo space. Ridiculously luxurious extras include heated and cooled seats with massage functions, a 20-speaker audio system and rear-seat entertainment with 10-inch screens connected to Slingbox for TV access. The 2018 Navigator has stepped up its game to compete in a super competitive segment it helped to create.
- Buick Enclave
After the debut of the new Enclave, Buick has a trifecta in the red-hot crossover segment. And the new utility vehicle was unveiled with a new premium trim called Avenir, which represents the brand’s intention to attract younger, luxury-seeking buyers that prefer the humble-brag. The Avenir brings a sexier look to the Enclave with exclusive 3-dimensional mesh grille, special badging, pearl nickel 20-inch aluminum wheels and premium interior materials. It’s an effort to turn the brand’s stodgy reputation on its head, a dragon General Motors has been long chasing for its Buick brand.
- Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk
The unveiling of the Jeep Trackhawk was a spectacle and deservedly so. The 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee Trackhawk is a 5,300-pound SUV with a supercharged 6.2-liter HEMI V8 engine that produces 707 horsepower and can get from zero to 60 mph in 3.5 seconds. Its top speed is 180 mph. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles used the same engine in the Trackhawk that debuted in the 2015 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat, making it the most powerful production SUV ever. Despite its performance chops, when in Tow mode the capable utility vehicle can pull 7,200 pounds. It’s also luxurious. The seats are ruby red leather and suede embroidered with the “Trackhawk” badge, and optional features include a dual-pane panoramic sunroof and 825-watt, 19-speaker Harman Kardon audio system.
- Toyota FT-4X
With a nod to its iconic off-road vehicles of yesteryear, Toyota Motor Corp. unveiled the new FT-4X concept aimed at trendy Millennial customers in search of adventure. Its striking orange-and-white color scheme and exaggerated stance left an impression on those in attendance, while features like a rotating rear handle that can open the hatch in multiple ways created a fun and quirky vibe. If there’s any question as to whether the FT-4X will reach production one day, the brand made sure to emphasize that its full name means “Future Toyota” with four-wheel drive. The FT-4X would be Toyota’s first off-road subcompact crossover with an eye toward the top-selling Jeep Renegade.