A quick review of what stood out

I haven’t made it to the 2014 Los Angeles Auto Show yet but I have made observations about some of the introductions. Feel free to leave your opinions in the comments section.LA Auto Show Rewind

I should probably start with a disclaimer for those that aren’t familiar with my writings. My comments are generally made in terms of designβ€”generally. Meaning, while I fully appreciate the virtues of performance and engineering feats, I’m not much of a gearhead. Rather, proportions, surfaces, shapes and colors are what I find most seductive in vehicles, and are the things that often tune out the numbers.

With that said, I apologize in advance if I happen to overlook an earth-shattering mechanical factoid or performance claim-to-fame but, instead, do mention how I like that same vehicle’s tail lights.

2016 Acura ILX

Unfortunately, Acura’s 2013 ILX just didn’t inspire me like the Integra or RSX had (I put over 100,000 miles on one of the latter). From a styling standpoint, it hasn’t sat well with me. It seems pedestrian yet quirky but not provocative, and that grille.

The 2016 model was freshened up

2016 Acura ILX

It’s a nice refresh and, if I’m not mistaken, the first showing of a reinterpreted “Power Plenum” grille. Notice it is less of a gate and more of a wing. Below are the front ends of the 2014 (which was the same from 2013 through 2015) and the new 2016.

2016 Acura ILX compare to 2014 Acura ILX

I think the front looks more sophisticated and the “Power Plenum” has been reworked into a type of wing, or at least a narrower plenum. I wonder if this will be model-specific or used across the lineup?

2016 Acura ILX grille closeup

At the rear, the changes are even more subtle.

2016 Acura ILX rear compare to 2014 Acura ILX

2016 Chevrolet Volt teaser

2016 Chevrolet Volt peek
Not a vehicle at the auto show but instead from a well-timed preview, existing Volt owners had a party thrown for them on November 19 in L.A. No cameras were allowed but a black and white image slipped out. Then, Chevy released some pictures (all pretty much showing the same thing). This is the most revealing of the bunch.

From what can be seen, everything comes together well, with a front that appears broader than the current model. The metallic-like surfacing in the grilles helps to differentiate it from conventional cars but… I’ve read a couple opinions that it has an essence of Acura. I’m presuming the correlation is made because the Volt’s guillotine-esque upper grille which is similar to Acura’s “Power Plenum.” Possibly adding to it is the check-mark bottom edge on the Volt’s headlight; that is reminiscent of the headlight on the late TSX (2014 below right).

2016 Chevrolet Volt peek compare to TSX

If you ask me, the comparison is a bit of a stretch and it is unlikely that Chevy is looking to swipe Acura’s signature grille design that’s been less-than-popular and appears to have recently undergone a makeover (a reference to the ILX refresh).


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