Morrie’s Automotive Group is proud to bring you live coverage from the 2013 LA Auto Show this week! Many of the brands in the Morrie’s group were debuting, revealing and introducing new models and we were live getting coverage to share with you!
The first press conference of the day, and arguably the most exciting, was Subaru’s where we saw the all-new 2015 Subaru WRX and the Legacy Concept. Attendees swarmed the stage following the press conference to look at the WRX and see how the vehicle has evolved since we saw the concept back in March at the NY Auto Show.
Nissan pulled out all the stops with an appearance by the company’s Director of Excitement, Usain Bolt, as well as complimentary beverages and their own Nissan NV grilled cheese food truck! The press conference was packed as they rolled out the 2014 Juke Nismo RS as well as a refreshed 2015 GT-R Nismo! Make sure to check out the photo of Usain’s signature pose below!
Ford got edgy this year with their all-new 2014 Edge crossover concept. The 5-passenger concept gives us a sneak peek at what lies ahead with the next generation Edge. Lately Ford has been focusing a lot on their driver assist technologies and it is no secret when you see what the Edge has to offer. A Collision avoidance system and a remote parking feature are enough to catch the eye of any consumer in the market for an affordable crossover vehicle.
Although the Maserati Ghibli has already landed at Morrie’s Luxury Auto, it was still very exciting to be in attendance for its North American debut today at the LA Auto Show. After you check out our photos, stop into Morrie’s Luxury Auto and take one for a test drive to get the real experience!
We made sure to stop by the Porsche press conference to get coverage for all of our luxury car fans and it sure was packed in there! The most affordable Porsche on the market, the Macan crossover compact SUV, debuted today as well as the 911 Turbo Cabriolet.
Hyundai was the last press conference of the day and as usual they did not disappoint! The crowd was packed as they unveiled a 2014 Veloster Turbo R-SPEC along with the new Tucson hydrogen fuel-cell crossover and the 2014 Hyundai Elantra.
Stay tuned for more live coverage from the LA Auto Show this week and make sure to find us on Facebook and Twitter for LIVE updates.
When someone offers you a chance to drive a brand new Maserati over a weekend, you’d be a fool to say no. From the moment you slide into the supple Italian leather driver’s seat and press the starter button on the left side of the steering wheel, you know you’re in something special. The twin-turbocharged 3-liter V6 whirrs to life with a guttural roar and quickly settles into a frenzied idle. It’s immediately clear that this engine can trace its heritage back to the Ferrari factory where the heart of this car is built alongside the fiercest engines in Maranello.
Speaking of which, the 3-liter V6 comes with a pair of turbochargers which boost power to 404 bhp and 405 lb-ft of peak torque available all the way from 1750 RPM to 5000 RPM. Although this is a 4,200 lb vehicle, it’s actually 150 lbs lighter than the outgoing model while offering similar power. What that means is that with all this power and style, the 2014 Quattroporte is significantly more fuel efficient than the previous generation, offering 15 city and 24 highway MPG. With the 8-speed ZF transmission, this car is definitely a great highway crusier. The huge range of gears allows for effortless high-speed cruising while sipping fuel. Of course, with the available paddle shifters, you’re never more than a few clicks away from flying at warp speed. On top of all that, the Quattroporte S Q4 features a clever all-wheel drive system that seamlessly transfers torque between the front and rear wheels, ranging from a 50/50 split between the front and rear wheels all the way to 100% of the power being sent to the rear of the car. All of this torque shuffling can be watched in real-time on the full-color instrument cluster display. With winter weather quickly approaching, there’s no doubt that this all-wheel drive system will help power the Quattroporte through all sorts of adverse conditions. In warmer, drier conditions, the Quattroporte S Q4 uses its all-wheel drive and wide, sticky summer tires to blast to 60 MPH in just 4.9 seconds.
While opinions vary on the new Quattroporte’s styling, in my eyes, it’s a much more refined and cohesive design compared to the outgoing model. The signature Maserati grille presents a menacing, snarling face which is framed by LED-lined headlights that give the Quattroporte an angry, aggressive look. It’s certainly more fearsome looking from the front than it is on the swoopy sides and contemporary rear end with quad tailpipes accentuating the wide hips. All in all, it’s an elegant design that exudes class and sets itself apart from the sea of BMW’s, Mercedes, and Audi’s out there. My only gripe is that the long, 125-inch wheelbase and curvaceous fenders are begging for some bigger wheels. Although I love the design of the standard 19-inch wheels, something in the 21 or 22-inch range would suit the car better, in my humble opinion. Luckily, there is an optional 21-inch wheel package available from Maserati that looks fantastic as well.
Turning our attention back to the inside of the Quattroporte, nearly everything you touch is beautifully trimmed in either buttery soft Poltrona Frau leather – which is the same supplier for Ferrari and Bugatti, among others – or suede-like alcantara for the headliner, sun visors, and pillars. Along with the Q4 all-wheel drive system there are four heated seats as well as a heated steering wheel, something I definitely appreciated during the chilly weekend I spent with the Quattroporte. Further down on the dash, we see shiny Erable wood trim – which is also integrated as a ring around the outside of the steering wheel – and a real aluminum bezel around the 8.4-inch touchscreen navigation screen. For those wanting a sportier look, real carbon fiber trim is available as well as three other types of wood including a really unique unfinished, open-pore Radica wood trim. It all adds up to a really nice place for passengers to sit back and relax, or hang on for dear life should you choose to set the engine mapping and suspension into Sport mode and let it rip!
Looking at the Maserati’s family tree, there is now a branch connecting parent company Fiat to Chrysler. The Italian giant took control of Chrysler a couple of years ago as they struggled in bankruptcy. As a result of the acquisition, we now see some parts sharing between Maserati and Chrysler, however the Quattroporte is nothing like Chrysler’s TC by Maserati from the early 1990s that was basically just a tarted-up LeBaron. Instead, Maserati has borrowed Chrysler’s Uconnect infotainment platform, now called Maserati Touch Control and featuring navigation by Garmin. Now before you cry out against this parts sharing between the famed Maserati and lowly Chrysler, keep in mind that the Uconnect system is one of the most acclaimed infotainment systems on the market today. What this means is that not only is the infotainment system highly capable but it’s also incredibly user friendly. The 600-watt standard stereo sounded really nice but for those looking for a true world-class audio system, consider the 15-speaker, 1280-watt Bowers & Wilkins speaker package. For those who anticipate frequently driving rear seat passengers around, you may also want to consider the sleek rear seat entertainment system, with or without the folding tables built into the front seat backs. On top of that, there’s also an available WiFi hotspot which is a must for heavy tablet or laptop users.
So what is it actually like to drive a Maserati Quattroporte? Well, despite its size, this thing is built to hustle. Although the sport mode for the exhaust and suspension help contribute to the dynamic feel, I typically found myself driving in the default mode, enjoying the supple suspension and quiet, luxurious cabin. Regardless of the settings, dipping your right foot into the throttle will exude a sonorous crescendo of sound as the punchy V6 winds out to its redline. Although the power delivery is smooth and seamless, this is one car that will definitely push you back into the seat. After posting a few quick cellphone pictures of the Quattroporte on Facebook I suddenly found myself with a lot of friends that inexplicably needed rides and everywhere I went – from the gas stations, to restaurants, and even a simple beer run to the Four Firkins – the 2014 Maserati Quattroporte granted me VIP treatment at every stop. Now try to imagine that happening in your run of the mill BMW 7-Series, Audi A8 or Mercedes S-Class. From the moment you arrive, the Maserati exudes class and exclusivity that is unrivaled in its price range. Speaking of which, the 2014 Quattroporte S features a base price of $102,500. Add in the all-wheel drive and heating package for $4,710 and $1,500 for delivery from Italy and you’ve got a beautifully crafted, exotic sedan for $109,010.
Guest blog post written by: Alex Bellus – a well-known automotive photographer in the Twin Cities area and a frequent attendee of MN C&C at the Automotorplex. He is an Automotive Analyst for IHS Automotive and has a wide range of automotive knowledge. Keep your eye out for his next Blog Post where he will highlight another popular new vehicle!
To be revealed in December
We’ve seen a lot of renderings of what may be the 2015 Ford Mustang, but it sounds like the wait is almost over. It was reported that the redesigned historical Ford model will be reveled in December, a month prior to the 2014 Detroit Auto Show. It was also reported that a few members of the Automotive press will have the chance to see the vehicle next week during a special preview at Ford’s headquarters in Dearborn, MI.
The Sixth Generation Mustang wasn’t expected until its 50th anniversary in April at the New York Auto Show, so we’re thrilled at the opportunity to get a sneak peek ahead of time! The all-new redesigned Mustang has an entirely new exterior and interior design, an EcoBoost turbo four-cylinder option, a V8 motor, a new rear-wheel drive platform, and is considerably less in weight compared to the current model.
The All New 2014 Cadillac CTS has just landed at Morrie’s Cadillac! Be the first to come test drive the completely redesigned CTS! In this video, Morrie’s Cadillac General Manager, Pat Kyes, gives you a brief look at this hot new sedan. Don’t wait, call us at 763-449-4000 or stop by to check out the hottest new model in the Cadillac lineup!
It was a real treat trading in my 2000 Chevrolet Impala for a fully loaded 2014 Kia Forte for 24-hours this past weekend. I wasn’t sure what to expect but I can truly say it was a delight to drive this sporty new sedan. I enjoyed it so much; I didn’t want to return the keys.
The 2014 Kia Forte is a great fit for younger drivers looking for a safe and attractive compact sedan with all the bells and whistles for an affordable price. Features that I got to enjoy included air conditioning, Bluetooth connectivity, a USB input and power windows and locks. But you can expect to find all of those standard features on the base model in the Kia Forte. The EX model that I had the pleasure of driving also included a power sunroof, push button start, a six speaker audio system, cruise control, fog lights, remote keyless entry, power mirrors and the updated generation of the Kia UVO system.
This fully loaded Kia Forte was equipped with a 2.0-liter engine allowing the vehicle to achieve 173 horsepower and 154 lb/ft of torque, and believe me; you can feel the power in this vehicle when you’re cruising around town.
The handling on the new Forte was extremely impressive thanks to the all-new electrically assisted steering capability, which allowed me to be in complete control of the vehicle at all times. The braking and acceleration were also an upgrade for me, as the response time from action to delivery was much quicker than what I was used to in my Impala. All in all, I felt safe and in control while behind the wheel of the 2014 Forte.
Mazda just unveiled the newly redesigned 2014 Mazda3 through a streaming broadcast on Xbox live last week. The redesign of the brands #1 seller will go on sale this fall and we are anxiously awaiting its arrival.
Mazda hasn’t given away all the details but they did give us some insight into what we can expect. The wheelbase on the new Mazda3 is expected to be 2.4 inches longer, lower and wider than the previous model. The pedals are aligned differently for safety and comfort. The driver will be centered above the pedals, which will be different than the standard pedal positions that are offset to the right.
An active driving pop up panel display is also an added feature on the redesigned sedan. This display will sit on top of the dashboard showing vehicle speed and navigation instructions and is designed to keep the driver more focused on the road. When the vehicle shuts off, the HUD screen will retract back into the dash. The main infotainment system also received a redesign.
Cadillac has always been synonymous with luxury, however, the lack of fresh blood to their lineup in the last decade left them tired and overlooked. That changed with the introduction of the 2013 Cadillac ATS. A new segment for Cadillac, the ATS brings the performance and luxury Cadillac is known for to a smaller, sportier platform. I was “tasked” with driving an ATS for a weekend and I have to say I was nothing less than impressed. I, like many others in my generation, initially thought Cadillacs were only enjoyed by those with an AARP card tucked into their wallet and spending their days on the golf course. I’m happy to say my assumptions were dead wrong.
At first glance this car is gorgeous. It sports the new, more aggressive front fascia that would later appear on the CTS, XTS, ELR, and future updates to Cadillac’s lineup. With features like swept back LED headlamps, 18-inch polished aluminum wheels, and a noticeably sportier stance than Cadillac’s past you can’t help but appreciate how far Cadillac has come. Currently one of the oldest American car brands, second only to Buick, Cadillac is amongst the oldest car brands in the world. Founded in 1902 with lineup consisting of 2 vehicles, the Runabout and Tonneau, both of which resembling the iconic Ford Model-A, Cadillac has spent the last 111 years perfecting the engineering found in their modern day offerings.
I’d love to tell you that I had a grand adventure during my time with the ATS but that would be quite a stretch from the truth. My weekend consisted of errands and traffic that the ATS took from mind-numbingly boring to fun in an instant. Equipped with the optional 321hp 3.6L V6 under the hood, I found myself smiling and giddy over making it to the next red light quicker that my fellow commuters. Its combination of available power, sport suspension, and remarkable list of safety features made driving this little beauty an absolute delight. The wide array of safety features that can be found in the ATS make you feel as if you have a co-pilot in the passenger seat. Getting too close to the car in front of you? Let me apply the brakes for you. Drifting into the next lane on accident? Let me warn you by vibrating your seat. The list goes on with features like adaptive cruise control, heads-up display, and parking assist to name a few.
The all-new 2014 Kia Cadenza has just arrived here at Morrie’s and it is quite the luxurious addition to the lineup. This full size sedan is available in one trim level at a base price of $35,100. The vehicle’s standard features include keyless entry, an advanced navigation system, leather-trimmed seats with heat and power adjustment in the front, Bluetooth, an 8-inch touch screen, 12-speaker audio system and rear camera display.
This 6-speed automatic transmission is equipped with a 3.3-liter v6 engine that generates 293 horsepower and 255 lb/ft of torque and utilizes gasoline direct injection technology, which helps to improve performance and maintain fuel efficiency. The Cadenza achieves 19 mpg in the city and 28 mpg on the highway and is sure to provide safety with 8 standard air bags.
The ATS is Cadillac’s first legitimate sports car to compete directly with the BMW 3 Series. It handles unlike any previous Cadillac due in part to its class leading weight, 50/50 weight distribution and multi-link suspension. When the driver is going around a sharp turn in the ATS, there is little to no roll effect at all. In fact, the ATS actually seems to handle curves better than it drives straight. The racing derived Brembo Brakes bring the ATS to a complete stop from 60 to 0 in a best in class 108 feet, besting the BMW by 5 feet.
The interior in the ATS is also a step above the BMW. With a hand cut and sewn interior, the driver is able to see every single stitch in the leather giving it a beautiful appearance. The ATS also comes in 7 different interior combinations and many standard features that BMW doesn’t even offer. Some of these include remote vehicle start, active noise cancellation, and illuminated outside door handles. The ATS also comes with Cadillac’s signature touch screen infotainment system, CUE, which is designed to look and feel like personal electronics already on the market. Different features on the infotainment system include 3-D navigation, weather updates, Pandora, and phone pairing through Bluetooth. CUE can be accessed through the touch screen, steering wheel controls, and through natural voice recognition. With the purchase of any cue equipped ATS the driver also gets a free iPad 2, loaded with applications for the CUE system that helps to give the driver a feel for the system off the road.
The all-new 2014 Cadillac ELR luxury coupe was unveiled in production form at the 2013 North American International Auto Show. We were excited to see it also make an appearance at this year’s New York International Auto Show last month. The ELR combines style, luxury and energy efficient technologies to bring you one truly magnificent automobile. The styling of this up and coming plug-in hybrid is very similar to the Cadillac Converj concept that we saw at the 2009 North American Auto Show in Detroit.
Under the hood the vehicle is equipped with an electric motor and a small 4-cylinder turbocharged engine that serves as the backup generator for the system. The electric motor has a range of 35 miles then the engine kicks in for a maximum combined range of about 300 miles. The ELR takes about 12 hours to recharge on a standard 120-volt outlet and about 4 ½ hours using a 240-volt outlet. The turn signal indicators located on the side view mirrors also act as charge indicators when the vehicle is plugged in so you know when charging is complete.
The vehicle was built with aerodynamics in mind, which allow the vehicle to glide along the road with minimal resistance. The bottom of the front grille is equipped with active shutters that open and close depending on speed. The underbody panels and hidden door handles also help to cut down on turbulence.
The interior is stylishly designed with chrome, leather, wood, and microfiber suede accents. Most of which, come standard on the base model. The model that was displayed at the New York International Auto Show featured 2 seats in the front and 2 seats in the rear.
The vehicle also comes with Cadillac’s signature touch sensitive CUE infotainment system. 20” wheels and sweeping body lines make the outside of the ELR look sleek, stylish, and one to remember. Pricing hasn’t been announced yet on this exciting new Cadillac model, but we will be sure to update you as soon as more information becomes available. Expect to see this vehicle on showfloors later in the year.