What You May Have Missed: 2013 Chicago Auto Show Odds and Ends
The 2013 Chicago Auto Show is now open to the public, but we were on hand for the special media preview days last week. And while you may have read about the big debuts straight from the show floor, there were a few noteworthy cars on hand that got less fanfare, but still merit our attention. Some of these vehicles received a mere mention alongside bigger debuts, and some were hiding out on the show floor, without all the hoopla of a press conference. It is in that spirit that we bring you the best of the rest, the odds and ends from the 2013 Chicago Auto Show. The Kia Optima Hybrid Superman Edition Kia had a pretty busy program lined up for the Chicago Show, debuting its seven-passenger crossover--the Kia Cross GT Concept--and 2014 Kia Forte 5 Door, a hatchback version of the recently-introduced 2014 Kia Forte sedan. But to the delight of DC comic junkies and Superman fans everywhere, it unveiled an Optima Hybrid, decked out in a full Superman muscle-suit. The vehicle was a collaboration between Kia, DC Comics, and Super Street Magazine. Among other things, the one-of-a-kind Optima "represents the strength of the Man of Steel with its efficient and robust powertrain." Special materials and paint finishes were applied to achieve the unique look. New Chevrolet Corvette C2 Stingray? Away from the buzz of the floor, was this sight for sore halogen-lighting exposed eyes. A replica Chevy Corvette C2 Stingray body, with the guts of a modern C6 Corvette. The curves look stunning, and one realizes just how beautiful these models were, with fresh paint and ding-and-blemish-free. Since the newest Corvette C7 has also been designated a Stingray, maybe we'll see a new replica with a C7 transmission and powertrain? Subaru Impreza Itasca Police Vehicle Your local cops should be so lucky. While Subaru didn't have an official press conference at the show, it did have this nifty police vehicle on hand. Far from your typical cop car, the Itasca Police Vehicle comes standard with a manual-transmission, and an unusually sporty interior, complete with leather and red cross-stitching. It's not so far fetched, really. Police in certain areas could benefit from the Subie's combination of all-wheel drive traction and tight-road maneuverability. Think about it: If you were a cop, and you had to traverse snowy two-lane roads, would you rather be int his all-wheel drive Subaru, or an ancient rear-wheel drive Ford Crown Victoria? We know we'd pick the Subie. Volkswagen Beetle R-Line and GTI Special Editions Volkswagen debuted its Beetle GSR at the 2013 Chicago Auto Show, but it also displayed two special editions of the GTI—a Wolfsburg edition, and a Driver's Edition—both of which add 18-inch alloy "Laguna" wheels, along with a few sporty touches. Similarly, the Volkswagen Beetle R-Line was on hand, and adds the R-Line body kit and badges that the CC, Tiguan, Touareg, and Beetle Coupe have already received. The new trims feature aesthetic changes only. SyFy Defiance Dodge Charger The SyFy network will air its newest show, Defiance, on April 15, 2013. The show is a post-apocalyptic tale of alien invasion, terraforming run amok, a decades long battle between humans and their invaders, and the never-ending question of whether all human life will be extinguished. You know, the usual. But if you can't wait a couple months, you can get a good look at one of the primary vehicles from the post-apocalyptic show, a Dodge Charger. Between the dirt, rust, ad-hoc push bars, off-road tires, and other modifications made, this banged-up, rusted Charger looks like it's already been through hell. It looks like it's ready to do it all over again. Hyundai Elantra Zombie Escape Vehicle Zombies are seemingly inescapable these days, and even at the Chicago Auto Show this holds true. Hyundai fortified a compact Hyundai Elantra, and equipped it with a functional zombie-plow, because zombies aren't noted for their ability to get out of the way. And with razor-sharp spokes jutting out of the wheels, this "Zombie Escape" Elantra will help you do more than just "escape."
Like its German rivals, Maserati plans to boost overall sales with the addition of new models, pushing...