Year of the Debut: Los Angeles Auto Show 2013

Article and Photography by Nick Kouris

The buzz surrounding the 2013 Los Angeles Auto Show on social media sites made it clear that this year was going to be special. The 2013 show featured more new car debuts, frommore manufacturers, than it has in recent years. With manufacturers leaking teaser photos to web based media, in the weeks leading up to the start of the show, there was plenty to be excited and anxious about. Team Revv felt the enthusiasm,attending the three press days which were held just prior to the 2013 LAAS officially opening to the public on Friday, November 22.

The General Motors Corporation presented the most significant numbers of debuts, with the majority of those being trucks and SUVs. Though having been released earlier this year, the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra were on display in their High Country and Denali trims, respectively. It must be noted that the segment of half-ton pickup trucks, commanding prices nearing and surpassing the $50,000 mark, are now offering a level of luxury and functionality which has been previously reserved forcomparably priced luxury-midsize sedans. Outfitted with full leather interiors, stitched leather dashboards, and large navigation screens, elegance seems to be the direction of thenew breed of Chevy pickup. They haven’t forgotten their roots, though. Most remain highly functional, including standard features such as 120V AC outlets, USB inputs, electronic trailer brake controllers, and payload capacities that exceed a half-ton. Returning to the midsize truck market is the all new Chevrolet Colorado; it is available with an inline-4, a V6, or a diesel engine and is due for release in 2015.

Offered with engines options that are more powerful and fuel efficient, the new Chevrolet Colorado should be a success in the mid-sized truck segment.

Striving to upgrade the extravagance of their SUVs together with their pickups, GM has reached new heights with the debut of the GMC Yukon [Denali], Chevrolet Tahoe Black andCadillac Escalade ESV. Early reports have the Cadillac Escalade model reaching as high as six-figures and equipped to compete with the likes of Land Rover Range Rover, Porsche Cayenne,and Mercedes-Benz G.

The Chevrolet Tahoe Black has a lowered stance, black accents and wheels, and has a stealthy demeanor about it.

With a level of luxury not previously seen in the Cadillac Escalade, this is sure to turn heads with the country-club crowd.

BMW’s focus was set toward ‘going green’ with the highlight of their exhibit being low emission hybrid and plug-in electric vehicles; the production-ready i8 and i3, respectively. This is avast departure from last year, which featured the debut of the current generation M5 and M6, and the spotlight was on BMW’sentire line of new M-cars. The i8 represents BMW’s latest attempt at building a supercar, since the extravagant Z8. In keeping with the trend of making it a hybrid, it is powered by both gasoline and electric motors. Attractive styling, over 400-horsepower, and hybrid design; this is becoming a common formula for supercars today.

Another manufacturer making several debuts was Porsche. The North American debut of the Porsche Macan featured both the S and Turbo trim levels. With the choice of an available 340-horsepower, twin-turbo equipped V6 or 400hp V8, the Macan is Porsche’s new entry-level crossover that shares some components with Audi’s supercharged SQ5. The initial response to the 2014 Cayenne, especially from purists, indicates that itwas not received well. Ironically enough, it has been their best seller and is considered by some to have assisted in savingPorsche. My media colleagues seemed to approve of the Macan;noting the sleek styling and the typical high-quality interior for which Porsche is known. The 918 Spyder, having been spotted testing across the West Coast adorned in various camouflages, looked even better in person and is perhaps nearing production-form.

Although we are sad to see the manual transmission option eliminated, Porsche has attempted to make this the best GT3 yet.

Mercedes Benz sole emphasis was apparent the quantity ofAMG cars brought to his year’s show. With the debut of the new S-class, AMG debuted the powerhouse S65 and SLS Final Edition. Other AMG models presented were the C63 coupe 507 edition, E63 S, G63, CLA 45, and the stellar Vision Gran Turismo concept. Even though the SLS is entering the last year of production, and a small car aimed at competing with the Porsche 911 is in the works, we are excited to see what AMG comes up with next.

The CLA 45 is AMG’s entry level sedan; offering a twin-turbo 6-cylinder that produces 355- horsepower.

While spy photos and rumors have been circulating the web for a few weeks now, Nissan officially announced a NISMO GTR for 2015 then brought it to LAAS. The NISMO GTR is upgraded aesthetically with a matte gray paint, a carbon fiber body kit and large rear wing. For the 2015 model year all GTRs also receive revised LED headlights. Under the hood, horsepower is increased to 591hp and is certain to be the baddest GTR yet.

With so great a number, as well as a wide range of debuts, automakers offer many choices and platforms. Each of which have a lot of potential for modification; though some have more potential than others. Cars like the new WRX or Hyundai Veloster Turbo R-Spec offer more room for modification compared with the Porsche GT3 or the Mercedes-Benz SLS which offer extraordinary performance directly from the factory. Even though many manufacturers are heading in the direction of electric-powered cars and hybrids powered supercars are becoming more common, it remains refreshing to see Mercedes-Benz AMGs with even more horsepower, the best Corvette to date, and SUVs/pickups that can still tow many tons, while offering a supreme level of comfort and luxury.

Check out our full feature of the newly released 2015 Subaru WRX and link to the article @


Check out our full feature of the newly-released VW e-Golf and Audi e-Tron @

Check out our full feature of the impending debut of the 2015 BMW M4 @


Nickkouris's Profile Image
Write a CommentCOMMENTS
Imprezions's Profile Image

Nice write up Nick! I'd rock a Nismo GTR in a heartbeat. Stock or not!

Rockysds's Profile Image

Great article, Nick! It's great to see so many manufacturers make an appearance with new tech. While that NISMO GTR is pretty nasty, I'm not quite sure that it was necessary with so much aftermarket support for the platform already. Are there still any R35 owners out there that keep 'em stock? lol

Nickkouris's Profile Image

Thanks, Ryan! Pleased with how many debuts there were. Definitely a NISMO GTR fan, and the R35 owners I know didn't keep theirs stock for long. *Cough* Shift-S3ctor guys.