New Cars [Page 1 of 197]
Nissan Murano (2014)

The third generation Nissan Murano will make its debut at the New York Auto Show later this week. It'll slot into Nissan's range above the facelifted Juke, and recently renewed Qashqai and Rogue/X-Trail models, giving the firm a very fresh crossover line-up.

Drawing heavily from the Resonance concept, shown at the 2013 Detroit show, the grille treatment is a logical extension of the theme established by the smaller crossovers, and brings the Murano closer into line with its siblings.

However, a larger V-shaped chrome bar in the grille, and more swept-back headlamps, help communicate its halo positioning in the crossover line-up.

The Murano is a little lower, wider and longer than the car it replaces, although Nissan hasn't yet confirmed the car's dimensions. In true crossover style, Nissan has worked to reduce the visual weight, dropping the windowline into the bodyside and bringing the rocker panel up, showing how complex the rear door's shape is.

In a change from the previous Murano, the new car's upkick of the window from C- to D-pillar is blacked-out to give a floating roof effect.

The rear is less controversial, the C-shaped crease at each corner of the bumper references the smaller Juke, while the LED tail-lamps are similar to the latest Rogue/X-Trail, albeit with a repetition of the shape of the headlamps.

Inside, like the Resonance, the Murano gets 'Zero Gravity' seats that use research by NASA to put the driver in a posture optimized to reduce fatigue, plus wood trim running around the IP and down onto the wide center console. A satin chrome bar wraps the center stack, referencing the front grille.

Nissan Murano gallery>

Land Rover Discovery Vision concept

As Land Rover spins off the Discovery nameplate into a three-car range, this Discovery Vision concept marks the future direction of this new 'lifestyle' arm of the British brand.

The first new car under the Discovery umbrella will be a replacement for the smaller, five-seat Freelander/LR2, but this Discovery Vision occupies a similarly substantial amount of real estate as the current Discovery 4/LR4.

It seems design director Gerry McGovern and his team have attempted to alleviate some of the visual size of the car by introducing a less hard-edged, sheer-surfaced aesthetic. The leading edge of the nose is pulled back, compared to the near-vertical aspect of the current car, while its lamp graphics are now drawn around into the fenders, increasing the sense of plan shape, as on the new Range Rovers.

This shift from geometric, almost architectural forms and graphics, continues around the body with soft transitions from glasshouse, to bodyside and into blown fender surfaces. Note the complete lack of shoulder.

Its graphics now appear applied to an overall form, rather than the car being constructed from a series of separate elements.

Perhaps most surprising is the strong rising emphasis of the bodyside that, on the evidence of these pictures, compounds (or, more likely creates) the high center of visual gravity over the rear wheels and beyond, into a long, high overhanging rear quarter. The roofline subtly tips its hat at the stepped roof and 'Alpine windows' of previous Discoverys. This appears pushed up by the forward-thrusting C-pillar but very little else of the previous cars remains.

A rather token kink in the rear licence plate surround is the remnant of the distinctive asymmetric tailgate, now replaced by a far more conventional setup with horizontal lamps.

Its interior architecture is far more familiar, with strong horizontal elements intersected by a broad center stack. It is also packed with advanced electrics such as augmented reality projections, gestural interface and seat-to-seat video calling ability.

We'll bring you more information in our New York show coverage.

Land Rover Discovery Vision concept gallery>

Peugeot Exalt concept

Following on from the initial leaked image of the Peugeot Exalt concept, further details have emerged of this interesting Beijing debutant.

The standout element is clearly its use of materials throughout. From basalt carbon rockers to a shark skin-inspired rear exterior surface treatment that reduces aero drag. The rest of the car's exterior is finished in untreated steel that, like the Onyx concept's copper, will be left to oxidise into what will presumably resemble a French rat rod.

Ebony, carved with a pattern by Chinese design practice PINWU, envelops the cabin at chest height, while wool-blends mix with carbon fiber and 3D printed speaker grilles. For its use of materials alone it promises to be one of the more interesting stars of the Beijing show.

Its format is also a little unorthodox, with a long wheelbase within its moderate 4,730mm length, while its 1,310mm high roofline is an unusual hybrid of coupe and wagon.

It will be interesting to see how it all hangs together next week.

Full Peugeot Exalt gallery>

Volvo Concept Estate [w/video]

Volvo's Concept Estate completes the trio of concepts created under senior vice president design Thomas Ingenlath following the Coupe and the XC Coupe and channels the classic P1800 ES.

It's essentially a shooting brake derivative of the Concept Coupe we saw in Frankfurt last year, with an alternative grille insert the only obvious lower body changes. Its tail follows the treatment of the XC Coupe from Detroit with its floating panel between its distinctive lamp graphics. All this is finished in a particularly fetching shade of metallic brown.

"The 1800-models are iconic Volvos, renowned for their beautiful forms and detailing," says Ingenlath. "However, using elements from their exterior and interior has nothing to do with being retro. We are using these subtle links to a glorious past to create a future in which sheer beauty becomes a recognized part of Volvo's identity."

Its interior is also closely related to its siblings but here serves to show the functionality behind the new range of vertical touchscreen-driven HMI that is destined for production later this year.

Orange seat belts and woven wool carpets from the Swedish designer Kasthall also feature, along with a crystal gear lever – that has an orange glow – from Orrefors/Kosta Boda. There's also chequered black and white wool textile on the front seats' headliner and rear sides.

Handcrafted details, such as the saddle leather-covered IP, waxed wood inlays and machined copper are designed to emphasize the Concept Estate's Scandinavian background. A specially designed game set of Swedish ‘kubb' is found under the load floor, while the rules are printed on the transparent floor. Stutterheim raincoats are also included in the back.

Volvo Concept Estate gallery>

Citroën C1 and Peugeot 108

The Citroën C1 and Peugeot 108 twins (along with their unidentical Toyota Aygo sibling) will make their second-generation debuts at next week's Geneva motor show.

Like the old C1 and 107 the pair share a bodyshell but this time there's a greater level of differentiation. The Peugeot is the more restrained of the two, with an iteration of the brand's latest face, with a horizontal chrome grille  and headlamps that feature a step in their lower surface. Meanwhile the Citroën is the more extrovert, with an unusual, rather surprised expression thanks to its large, circular 'eyes' and raised 'eyebrows'. 

This is a little confusion however, as the Citroën's grille graphic, vertical DRLs,  black A-pillars that cut down to meet the windowline and contrast roof all say 'DS' rather than C-line Citroën. The establishment of the new Citroën C-line design language, introduced by the C4 Cactus, may well take some time to filter through the range.

The 108 is also available a two-tone colorway, its livery split around its beltline and marked by a broad, pattered stripe, apparently inspired by the fashion industry. Its A-pillar treatment is in body color, while its DLO pushes forwards into the front fender in a similar way to the rear of the 208's windowline.

This pair's bodysides are shared and available with either 3 or 5 doors, while they are also offered with full-length fabric sunroofs.

Their rears are also largely shared, with deep, glazed tailgates. Only lamp inserts and bumper finishers are different.

We're yet to see their interiors but they promise to be rather more upmarket than the cars they replace. We're rather sad to say the days of the honest, utilitarian A-segment car appear to be numbered.

C1 and 108 gallery>

Hyundai Intrado Concept

Hyundai's new Intrado concept, which will debut at next week's Geneva motor show, is the first Hyundai designed under the direction of Peter Schreyer and is the first concept to utilize the brand's Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design language first seen on the 2015 Genesis.

The fuel cell-powered crossover concept has been developed by Hyundai's design studio in Germany and was inspired by the aviation industry.

It features a more three-dimensional hexagonal grille flanked by slender LED headlights and horizontal daytime running lights. The glasshouse and heavily raked windscreen sit on powerful wheelarches, while grey plastic cladding also features.

The chassis is constructed using a patent-pending, flexible, soft woven carbon fiber tubing system that can be bent into more flexible shapes than conventional materials. It can then be made hard and rigid, removing the need for B-pillars. It also saves weight and cost.

Inside, the orange and black-themed cabin features a flat-bottom steering wheel, a small, dashboard-mounted screen and a center console with the gear selector, parking brake and climate controls. A digital instrument cluster also features a compass and a 4×4-style inclinometer.

Gallery: Hyundai Intrado concept

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