A concept car is created for the purpose of showcasing new automotive styling and technology, which are generally displayed at motor exhibits. These units do not necessarily go into production straightaway as manufacturers would first need to determine how customers will respond to the concept cars’ new overall design during the motor exhibit.
The first concept car was created by General Motors designer Harley Earl and gained popularity in the 1950's. These cars may or may not be mass produced. Concept cars are different from “production-intent” cars which undergo several modifications before finalizing the design for practical, safety, cost and regulatory compliance purposes.
This year, thanks to the upswing in the automotive industry after a few years of being dormant due to the economic crisis, automakers are given a new motivation to demonstrate stylish, functional, exciting, and exceptional concept cars. Car enthusiasts have a lot to share and talk about.
Here is the list of the top ten coolest concept cars so far this year.
10 Lincoln MKC
Coming in the tenth spot on the list is the Lincoln MKC concept. This concept car features an eye-catching and stylish exterior design and a leather offset by metal-flake-infused wood trim that replete the interior. Its programmable ride control will enhance riding and handling experience. There are push buttons for drivers to control the transmission.
9 Ford Atlas
Next in line is the Ford Atlas concept. This concept car epitomizes a potential future design direction for the F-150 pickup and illustrates some future functionality. Its engine showcases a next-generation EcoBoost type, somewhat similar to the existing 3.5-liter V6, except for the stop-start technology the EcoBoost engine features. The new version of the F-150 may have the Atlas features in the years to come.
8 Hyundai HCD-14 Genesis
The number eight spot goes to the Hyundai HCD-14 Genesis concept, which provides a preview of Hyundai’s premium cars in the next couple of years. This concept car features a clean profile, a blocky grille, a roofline that is coupe-like with rear-hinge rear doors. The interior of the car is more amazing - the infotainment system is controlled by an eye-tracking and gesture-recognition technology.
7 Volkswagen Passat Performance
Landing in the seventh spot is the Volkswagen Passat Performance concept. The new Passat was introduced by Volkswagen for the 2012 model year. This time, the auto company is delving into the possibility of a sport model. The new concept car is powered by a 1.8-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine that produces 250 horsepower. Another feature of the concept car is that it has a lowered suspension to enhance handling. In addition, the exterior highlights dual exhaust, and the 19-inch wheels and the mirrors have carbon appliqués. The interior of the car has seat inserts and carbon-style trim on the dashboard. It is expected that a Passat sport model will be available within two years.
6 Volkswagen CrossBlue
Hitting sixth place is another innovation from Volkswagen, the CrossBlue concept. The company is exploring the possibility of including a midsize SUV for the North American market along with its Tiguan and Touareg models. The CorssBlue concept has a built-in hybrid diesel powertrain that produces 305 horsepower and 516 lb-ft of torque as it delivers an estimated 35 mpg, 14 miles of electric-only range and a 0-to-60 mph time of 7.2 seconds. This shows off the concept car’s most innovative features.
5 BMW 4-Series Coupe
Taking the fifth spot is the BMW 4-Series Coupe concept. It features a wilder design including the mirrors, front and rear fascias, and side scoops. This concept car may look like it is ready for production. As it will be more exclusive compared to the existing 3-series coupe, it means that the 4-Series will be more expensive. Unlike the other model, the 4-Series Coupe concept is lower, longer, and wider.
4 Honda Urban SUV
In fourth place is the Honda Urban SUV concept. With the rise of the "cute ute" in 1996 by way of the compact Toyota RAV4, today, the “cute ute” is taken to another level with a smaller and subcompact car, thanks to the Honda Urban SUV concept. It features a new shift for the automaker that fits in below the CR-V model in terms of vehicle-size and price. It will get its own version of the latter’s Magic Seat to provide several seat configurations, like a fold-flat mode, for instance.
3 Fiat 500 Abarth Tenebra Design
Earning the third spot is the Fiat 500 Abarth Tenebra Design concept. The small concept car is covered in matte gray paint with a touch of black chrome accents and gloss gray mirrors, side stripes, and a distinctive scorpion logo on the roof. The interior features black sport seats with gray piping and stitching, plus a racing harness pass-through. The dashboard is matte carbon fiber-finish.
2 Toyota Furia
The second coolest concept car so far for this year is the Toyota Furia. Previously, the company went through challenging automotive competitions from other well-known companies like Chevrolet, Dodge, Ford, and Hyundai. With the Furia concept, Toyota is bound to set the wheels rolling in once more. The concept car shows off an aggressive and ground-breaking design direction for the next Corolla version called Iconic Dynamism. According to a reliable source, the production will look quite similar only with slight changes for the front and rear fascias, 19-inch wheels and carbon-fiber rocker panels. This is due to be on sale this fall.
1 Nissan Resonance
Finally, taking the top spot is the Nissan Resonance concept. The company is probing the future of its crossover styling now that the Roque and Murano models are due for redesigning. The concept car features one probable design path with a hybrid powertrain. According to Nissan, this innovative design will balance the dynamic fluidity with pure edginess. Interior provides a classy feel with its white leather, real wood, and graphically layered displays. The Resonance concept exhibits a futuristic appeal. Future production vehicles from Nissan could feasibly have some of the innovations present in the Resonance.
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