2000 North American International Auto Show Preview

December 27, 1999

In the ten years since it grew up and put on its international finery, the North American International Auto Show has gotten bigger. And bigger. And bigger. This year, estimates rolling in place the total cost of staging the show at $350 million. GM alone will spend about $50 million to display all its concepts and production vehicles within one massive stand.

The stage is being set now for the press preview of the show, from January 9-14. But this week at The Car Connection, we’re bringing you a special preview of what you’ll see at the 2000 Detroit show, in spy-shot form. We’ve also got more information on vehicles that haven’t circulated through our ring of spy photographers

There’s no question that the North American International Auto Show this year is going to be full of surprises, too. Check back here starting Monday, January 10, for twice-daily updates on the show and its introductions. Meanwhile, here’s an early look at some of the new metal that will be shown publicly for the first time in Detroit.

DaimlerChrysler minivans



An all-new Chrysler Town & Country, Dodge Caravan and Chrysler Voyager will be on display. They will use variants of DC's new V-6 engine family and will have improved crashworthiness as well as convenience features.



Toyota Sequoia


Toyota’s Tundra-based SUV that will be built alongside the Tundra at the company’s Princeton, Indiana plant. The underpinnings may provide the basis for the next-generation Land Cruiser and Lexus LX 470 as well. Expect the same 4.7-liter V-8 under the hood as is found in the Tundra.
Photo by Brenda Priddy




Ford Escape/Mazda Tribute

Ford’s new small SUV will make its debut in near-production sheetmetal, with only a few tweaks for the auto show. Here is a sneak preview of the production model. It will be powered by your choice of a 2.0-liter four cylinder and a 3.0-liter V-6 engine and sold in numerous markets outside the United States, as is evident from this photo of a right-hand drive model. Mazda's new SUV, to be called Tribute (at right), will share its platform, powertrains and Kansas City, Missouri production facility with the Ford Escape.



Mercedes C-Class

Making its world debut in Detroit is this sporty hatchback version of the new Mercedes C-Class. The car will be market in the United States as a coupe, and will be the first of the range of C-Class sedans, wagons, and a possible activity-lifestyle vehicles to come out of Stuttgart.
Photo by Brenda Priddy




Mercedes A-Class Roadster


More than a foot shorter than an SLK, this A-class based roadster could come to the USA if it is built. In fact, it is the only way we will ever see any sign of the A-class on these shores, according to our sources. Priced in the same territory as the Mazda Miata, it could be an entry-level car in Mercedes roadster lineup, consisting now of the SL and SLK.





Nissan Sentra

Based on Nissan’s new global front-drive platform, the Sentra will offer a choice of an emissions-friendly 1.8-liter four or a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. As with the Altima and Maxima, the 2000 Sentra will be available in three trim levels: XE, GXE and SE.




Volvo V70


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