World Car to be revealed at NY Show as Mercedes, Mazda, Subaru line up debuts
Focus on the future...
It's now looking like Mazda will roll out a hard-top version of its excellent MX-5 at next week's New York Auto show.
We know for sure that Mercedes will reveal the first of two planned AMG versions of its new E-Class.
Subaru is also primed to show its new 2017 Impreza. There will be many more but a focus point for me will be the announcement of the overall World Car of the Year winner.
It's between three at this stage - the Audi A4, Mazda MX-5 and Mercedes GLC. I've a feeling it's going to be extremely tight. My voting was (agonising stuff). I will disclose how I voted when the announcement is made.
Meantime, we can look forward to Mercedes' new performance version of the recently unveiled E-Class.
The twin-turbocharged V6-powered E43 4Matic saloon - pumping 395bhp - is due here later in the year. Mercedes says it is planning more AMG models to compete with Audi's 'S' range and BMW's 'M Performance' models.
The Subaru Impreza will be shown as a saloon and 5dr hatchback. Subaru claims it has been totally overhauled and is the first model built on its new global platform. This is made to be lighter and stronger. It will form the basis for all future models.
The 5dr hatch is expected in right-hand-drive towards the end of the year.
Away from New York, the Beijing Show in April also attracts a lot of attention and already the sneak previews are being shown.
Mazda, for example, is giving us a hint - teasing us more likely - of what its new CX-4 crossover will look like. This will be a world debut for the model which observers predict will have been heavily influenced by the Koeru crossover coupé concept shown at last autumn's Frankfurt Show. It will slot in between the CX-3 and CX-5 in the company's SUV line-up.
It is expected to share most of its underpinnings with the CX-5.