Each year, a bumper crop of new cars ushers in a new model year. Those new cars can be significant redesigns, or simple facelifts, or more.
This year, there's a bigger than usual crop of brand-new cars. Some are vehicles never seen before--vehicles that could make or break some car brands--while others are wholesale reinventions of existing nameplates, with new styling or technology, or both.
Out of those brand-new vehicles, 17 of them are the most important new cars of 2015:
2015 Acura TLX 3.5 SH-AWDEnlarge Photo
The Acura TLX is set to replace both the TL and TSX in Acura’s sedan range, as the Honda brand tries to focus on more than just crossovers. Our first take? The new TLX is pretty darned brilliant, with the best-tuned suspension you can buy for the money. It’s really that good.
2015 Alfa Romeo 4CEnlarge Photo
It's a breathtaking two-seater, built from a carbon-fiber chassis with a mid-engine layout. The Alfa Romeo 4C may not be a volume player, but it's a big signal that Fiat Chrysler has big ambitions for the return of Alfa Romeo to America. Dynamically imperfect but damn close to it, the 4C is a limited-run come-on that's basically been fabricated out of thin air for a singular purpose. To make some noise.
2015 Audi S3Enlarge Photo
The A3 is a critical new family of small cars for the Audi brand. By the time they're all on sale, the A3 lineup will include the sedan, an Avant wagon, a pretty convertible, and diesels, sports models, and a plug-in hybrid hatchback. Throw in the compact Q3 crossover, and Audi has a weapon to fend off the launch of the Mercedes CLA and GLA compacts.