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‘Evolved’ Luxury Vehicles Debut At The 2012 New York Auto Show

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  autos arrows plug v2 Evolved Luxury Vehicles Debut At The 2012 New York Auto Show

Luxury automakers have just introduced a litany of pricey new sedans, convertibles and sport-utility vehicles at the 2012 New York International Auto Show. These new models exemplify the latest developments in the evolution of luxury vehicles, and are sure to turn heads as they hit the streets.

2013 acura rlx concept credit brady holt Evolved Luxury Vehicles Debut At The 2012 New York Auto Show

2013 Acura RLX Concept (credit: Brady Holt)

Acura RLX: 30 Miles Per Gallon
Acura previewed its next flagship luxury sedan as the RLX Concept, an all-wheel-drive hybrid that company officials promise will deliver exciting driving dynamics while getting 30 miles per gallon in mixed driving – similar mileage to a Honda Civic. The RLX will replace the slow-selling Acura RL when it goes on sale early next year.

Entry-Luxury Sedans With Hybrid Drivetrains
The introduction of two all-new entry-luxury sedans were unveiled just minutes apart. The sedans will compete directly against each other and include the redesigned 2013 Lexus ES and the redesigned 2013 Lincoln MKZ, both premium cars derived from everyday family sedans. Both emphasize a smooth, quiet ride more than sporty handling, and both are offered with gas-electric hybrid drivetrains.

2013 lexus es300h hybrid credit brady holt Evolved Luxury Vehicles Debut At The 2012 New York Auto Show

2013 Lexus ES300h Hybrid (credit: Brady Holt)

Lexus ES: Bigger On The Inside
The Lexus ES adopts a new, larger grille design that’s shared with other 2013 Lexus vehicles. With that grille, Toyota is trying to give its premium brand a shared design attribute that makes the car instantly identifiable as a Lexus. Based on the best-selling Toyota Camry, the ES has a more upscale interior and more luxury features to justify its extra cost. The redesign also brings a roomier interior than the 2012 ES.

2013 lincoln mkz credit brady holt Evolved Luxury Vehicles Debut At The 2012 New York Auto Show

2013 Lincoln MKZ (credit: Brady Holt)

Lincoln MKZ: A New Kind Of Sunroof
With its sleeker shape and a new, all-glass roof, the new Lincoln MKZ doesn’t have quite as much interior space as the Lexus ES, but it shares many of the merits that have made that competitor so popular over the years – a stylish and carefully finished interior and the promise of excellent ride quality, while offering additional technology features. To help distinguish it from the Ford Fusion, Lincoln gave the MKZ a unique, full-size 15-foot power sunroof. Although it’s increasingly common for cars to offer glass over the rear seat, no other sedan lets you open the entire roof. The MKZ also includes an adjustable suspension with sport, comfort and normal settings, as well as a push-button shifter.

BMW 6 Series Gran Coupe & The Runners Up
Another newly unveiled luxury car is BMW’s 6-Series Gran Coupe, which, despite its name, is actually a four-door sedan, albeit a lower-slung sedan than the company’s best-selling 5-Series. The Gran Coupe has a sumptuous two-tone interior and is priced from $76,000. Several pricey new convertibles and SUVs are also on display, including models from BMW, Chrysler and Mercedes-Benz that are expected to top $100,000.

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For more great, firsthand coverage of the New York International Auto Show, visit CBSNewYork.com/Autos.

Brady Holt, a Washington D.C. newspaper reporter, has had a lifelong interest in cars in the automotive world, and he’ll share his thoughts at every available opportunity. Brady has written for Examiner.com since 2008, and covered the ’08 New York International Auto Show with Edmunds.com’s Inside Line team as a student journalist. His work can be found on Examiner.com.