I am in total support of living in a self-sufficient urban hub, where one can walk and/or bike to absolutely every place listed on their daily agenda, however, I am a fan of the automobile. We all know that if you do live in CLE, 97% of our population drives from point A to point B. While bicycling has increased in mass numbers, residents in our metro area must drive themselves or at least use some sort of public transportation to reach certain destinations. And I am perfectly happy with this situation because I enjoy the act of driving. Getting behind the wheel of a car can be exhilarating, stress-relieving and just plain fun.
Every year, I attend the Greater Cleveland Auto Show along with other classic/vintage car shows throughout the year with family and friends. And every year I tell myself that I am going to take a long weekend trip to Michigan for Detroit’s big show. Well, another year has passed and I missed Detroit again. And after reading reviews of the 2012 show, it is extremely exciting to see what the critic’s had to say about American auto manufacturers.
I am a fan of many makes and models, whether it includes a luxurious German beauty or all-terrain American 4×4. If money were no object, I would certainly have a Rolls Royce Ghost in my 10+ car garage. But unfortunately I am not a blood relative of the Lerner or Gilbert family.
The good news is, U.S. automakers are not playing around anymore. GM and Ford are producing stylish, reliable vehicles that are truly ready to take on Germany and Japan. The Motor Trend crew praised Ford, Lincoln, Chevy, Dodge and Cadillac as their top show stars this year, which included two models that I really think are going to be huge players in the mid-size sedan and entry-level luxury segments.
I never thought I would drive a Ford. A year ago, I signed a lease for a 2011 Edge, and I haven’t had one complaint. The ride, quiet cabin and sleek exterior design drew me to this crossover, as Ford’s sedan line-up didn’t exactly intrigue my senses. However, the 2013 Fusion is something that I will be test driving when my lease comes to an end. The Fusion seemed to receive the most buzz this year, with a total makeover that combines Jaguar and Aston Martin cues with an abundance of technology. Other than the 1965 Mustang convertible, this is the sleekest thing I have ever seen from Ford.
Another huge crowd pleaser was the all-new 2013 Cadillac ATS. GM has poured an exuberant amount of money, time and research into this entry-level luxury sport sedan, which is intended to take on the BMW 3 Series head on. The aggressive styling, new CUE system and numerous engine options should hopefully bring in a younger demographic to Caddy showrooms. I think that shoppers who are test driving a C-Class, A4, 3 Series or G37 will soon be putting the ATS on their short list. Let’s hope GM keeps the price point and lease offers competitive because I would like one of these right now (in charcoal, please).