10 cars you must see at the 2013 Toronto auto show
Published Saturday, February 16, 2013 7:00AM EST
Last Updated Saturday, February 16, 2013 3:55PM EST
Hundreds of cars await visitors at the Canadian International Auto Show, but the ten on this list are the ones you can’t miss.
From a supercar that costs as much as a house to a concept car controlled by a tablet, here is a list of the best cars worth checking out at the Toronto auto show.
1. 2013 SRT Viper
American Muscle has never looked – or sounded – so good.
During the Toronto unveiling, members of the press heard this car before they even saw it, thanks to the folks at Chrysler revving the beast’s V10 engine before driving it up on to the stage.
Causing the racket of noise and cloaked by a modernized body sits an all-aluminum 8.4-litre V10 engine.
It pumps 640 hp to the rear wheels, helping the Viper reach 60 mph in 3.5 seconds.
So what if Chrysler is now owned by Italian automaker Fiat? This car shows that Chrysler can still pump out a car that can stir anyone’s emotions.
2. Acura NSX Concept
Gearheads will suggest this car has been the concept that’s been only that, a concept, for too long. But if this goes into production in two to three years (as was hinted at the show), then this will be the car that 9-year-old kids will poster up in their bedrooms.
It looks gorgeous with sharp, muscular edges that still have artistic flow, pulled back to a softly pointed rear. Almost like an Audi R8 that has been to the gym, with a hint of steroids.
Behind thin, angular headlights that seem to be frowning in anger sits two electric motors, which are designed to power the front wheels. The car is also equipped with a V6 engine for internal-combustion power and excitement.
3. Mini Cooper John Cooper Works GP
If you want the fastest modern production Mini ever made, get your order in now – before you get to the bottom of this article. Only 50 are coming to Canada, and the price is (only) $44,900.
The engine has been tuned to pump out 211 hp, and they’ve tossed out things like the rear seats to cut down on weight. For what it’s worth, rear seats in a Mini are mostly symbolic to grown adults anyways.
Sure, there are several cosmetic tweaks, with red trim, special decals and a silver roof – but that won’t matter when you’re behind the wheel of this bad boy that can rocket to 100 km/h in 6.2 seconds.
4. Audi RS7
While other automakers are touting family cars packed with hybrid technology meant to squeeze every last mile out of every drop of gas, the folks at Audi just want to have fun along with having enough space to haul around the family.
The RS7, the sporty version of the A7, looks relatively calm and unintimidating from the outside. Behind the wheel, however, is where everything changes. Put the pedal down and this car’s V8 engine comes to life as twin turbos whirl to help the engine push 560 hp to all four wheels via Audi’s legendary Quattro system.
With a 0-100 km/h time of 3.9 seconds, this car will help you finish the grocery run with time to spare for an extra lap around the block.
5. Ford Fiesta ST
If you’re on a budget and can’t afford the RS7, this tiny yet sporty offering from Ford should satisfy any driver’s need for speed.
Clever engineering means that the small 1.6-litre engine in the 2014 Fiesta ST will produce 197 hp, Ford says.
To help drivers harness all that power, the Fiesta ST is available with sporty Recaro seats designed to keep the driver snug behind the wheel.
6. Hyundai HCD-14 Genesis Concept
The South Korean auto maker, in Canada now for 30 years, showed this car under the premise that it is about to undergo a transformation.
Big and brash with a high nose and a solid shoulderline that stretches to the rear, this concept is likely to turn heads at the show.
Underneath the beautiful body, Hyundai says the concept’s wheels are powered by a V8 engine that produces more than 400 hp, coupled to an 8-speed transmission.
Hyundai says that inside the cabin, drivers can use motion controls to adjust the climate system and change the radio station.
7. BMW i8 Concept
The “i” range is meant to showcase the automaker’s sustainable and innovative vehicle lineup.
Not only does the vehicle look stunning, it’s made of materials that are 99 per cent recyclable when it comes time to send it to the car heavens, BMW said at the show.
Even the factory where they’re hoping to build the carbon fibre panels for this car will draw electricity from a nearby hydro-electric plant in Washington state.
The i8 is a plug-in hybrid, using both an electric drive system for the front wheels and a three-cylinder engine for the rear wheels. Both work in tandem to propel this car to 100 km/h in 4.6 seconds through an all-wheel-drive system.
8. Corvette Stingray
Front-and-centre in the Chevrolet section, the seventh-generation ‘Vette looks set to push the iconic muscle car into the future.
From the outside, it has a wide front grille that gives the impression that this car is grinning with happiness.
Behind that smile sits a brawny 6.2-litre V8 engine. While it’s supposed to be good on fuel, you’re not buying a Corvette for efficiency.
GM estimates the engine in the 2014 Stingray will produce 450 hp, enough grunt to get the car to 60 mph in under four seconds.
Expect to see the rear of this car – with its quad-pipe centre-mounted exhaust arrangement - on roads later this year.
9. Toyota Fun-Vii
This Japanese automaker’s concept was the most futuristic at the show, featuring an exterior that behaved like a giant TV screen changing colours and displaying videos on-the-fly.
Toyota says the Vii in the name stands for ‘vehicle interactive Internet.’ Not surprisingly, it’s aimed at a young generation, a demographic in sync with social media and smartphones.
For example, visitors at the show can control the Fun-Vii’s exterior ‘paint job’ by using a giant tablet just outside this car’s rotating stage.
No keys to this car: it uses ‘bio recognition’ (face scans) of the driver to unlock the doors and start the ignition. That’s just one of the futuristic ideas Toyota has in the works for this concept.
10. McLaren 12C Spider
This is one of those real-life supercars that you might never see on the roads yourself, so take advantage of the auto show and check out the 12C Spider in the flesh.
The 3.8-litre V8 engine that sits at the back of the car churns out 616 hp through a Formula1-inspired 7-speed transmission. Combined, the machinery works to send this car to 100 km/h in a mere 3.1 seconds.
This particular version features a retractable hard top that drops faster than the time it’ll take you to slap on sunscreen in the summer sun.
If you’re in the market for one, the red model at the show retails for about $355,000.