Remember meForgot password?
    Log in with Twitter

article imageOp-Ed: The top 10 cars we can't wait to drive in 2016

By Scott Huntington     Dec 28, 2015 in Technology
2016 is going to be a great year for cars. Many models are being revamped and reintroduced. Some new models are bold moves for major car manufacturers, whether it's in terms of performance or design.
So let's get you up to speed – which cars should you pay attention to in the coming year?
1. Fiat 500X - $20,900, 22 city/31 highway
Kārlis Dambrāns - Creative Commons
Still laughing at the tiny Fiats cruising around the United States? The 500X will give you a reason to actually pay attention, because it's a five-passenger subcompact SUV.
Mechanically, this SUV is not related to any other Fiat. It's built on the Jeep Renegade chassis, and features all-new packaging, suspension and driver position. A 160-horsepower, 1.4-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder engine and a six-speed manual transmission come standard. It's available in front- or all-wheel drive. Along with its updated interior, it's the best-driving Fiat yet.
2. Acura NSX - Price TBD, 17 city/24 highway
Falcon Photography - Creative Commons
The wait is finally over – Acura designed the newest incarnation of this sports car to be a Ferrari killer. It's twin-turbocharged, it's all-wheel-drive and it's wrapped in a shell fit for road-battling: aluminum, carbon-fiber and high-strength steel.
The NSX's hybrid powertrain contains three electric motors, as well as a twin-turbo V-6 that makes a combined 573 horsepower.
3. Tesla Model X - ]$69,000, up to 101 city/102 highway
Steve Jurvetson - Creative Commons
Just a few years ago, dismissing Tesla as a one-off company would have been fine. However, as you may have noticed, there's a lot more Teslas on the road. More charging stations are popping up. It appears as though Tesla is here to stay.
The latest model finally arrives for 2016, sporting Falcon Wing rear doors designed for ease of entry/exit, as well as seating for seven. The same electric engine that drove the Model S will also be used in this stylish crossover.
4. Chevy Corvette - $55,400, 17 city/29 highway
Wiki Commons
455 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque on the base model? Sounds like a deal. One of America's finest sports cars will rocket into the new year, with a 0-60 time of just 3.8 seconds with the manual option and 3.7 seconds with the eight-speed automatic.
New styling options make the elegant Vette look even more like a supercar rival. The Z06 performance package is proof of this – it has a supercharged LT4 V-8 that puts out 650 horsepower and 650 pound-feet of torque.
5. Ferrari 488 Spider - $270,000, 16 city/22 highway
Say hello to the V8-powered mid/rear-engine Spider. This aerodynamic and efficient car can jolt to 60 mph in just 3 seconds, with a new 3.9-liter twin-turbo V8 putting out 660 horsepower and 561 pound-feet of torque.
No element of beauty is sacrificed here – the body styling has been engineered for improvements in all areas.
6. Chevy Volt - $33,170, 420 miles combined range
William Oliver - Creative Commons
The first Volt was kind of a shot in the dark. It aimed to combine the best of both the gasoline- and electric-powered worlds, with up to 38 miles of electric range and 37 mpg of fuel economy. While both of these numbers were impressive, they weren't quite enough to turn the Volt into a superstar.
Luckily, the engineers at Chevrolet took note of Volt 1's downfalls. The 2016 Chevrolet Volt boasts a dramatically improved electric range of 53 miles, which means you can easily run it on battery power for a full day's drive. The fuel economy has jumped to 42 mpg combined, which means the total combined range is 420 miles – even with a smaller 8.9-gallon gas tank.
7. Lincoln Continental - $60,000, mpg TBD
Road and Track
The new Continental, which had its last run in 2002, is making a comeback for 2016. It's expected to sport a four-cylinder EcoBoost V6 3.0-liter engine, which puts out 440 horsepower. The fuel economy will be an improvement from the last model.
It won't drive like a yacht with a 0-60 time of 6 seconds, but you have the ability to make it feel like one with three driving modes: sport, normal and comfort. The exterior of the car has received an admirable upgrade, with a sloping, graciously curvy design.
8. Volvo XC90 - $55,000, 20 city/25 highway
Car and Driver
It's safe to say we've mostly made a recovery from the 2008 recession. That means more Americans are buying cars. The problem is, no one is buying Volvos. The automaker has been hovering in neutral for a while, but hopes to change that with the arrival of the XC90 SUV.
The new Drive-E engine is a 2.0-liter four-cylinder, which isn’t much, but add a turbocharger and a supercharger, and 316 horsepower seems flaunt-worthy for an SUV. Zero to 60 in 6 seconds doesn't sound bad either. While the price isn't exactly sensible, it's a step in the right direction for Volvo to get itself back in the game.
9. Scion iA/iM - $15,700/$18,460, 33 city/42 highway // 28 city/37 highway
Road and Track
Double trouble from the Scion camp this coming year. While both cars are aimed at the youth demographic, each possesses its own unique qualities.
The iA’s engine and chassis are from Mazda. It sports a 1.5-liter I4 with 106–horsepower and 103 pound-feet of torque. This is the most surprising development from Scion, as the car looks like a Corolla-Mazda 2 hybrid.
The iM hatchback has a 1.8-liter I4 engine that comes from the Toyota Corolla, putting out 137 horsepower and 126 pound-feet of torque. This model is a more familiar development of the Scion design.
10. Buick Cascada - $33,990, TBD
Motor Trend
According to Buick, convertibles need to come back in style. Under the attractive exterior, it's basically a Verano, powered by a 1.6-liter turbocharged engine that produces 200 horsepower. The soft top takes 17 seconds to retract and can do so at speeds of up to 31 mph.
These cars should have you revving your engines for 2016.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
More about Automotive, Cars, Driving