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The Best Cars and SUVs of the 2018 New York Auto Show

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More useful than sexy. That’s the kind of cars and SUVs unveiled at this year’s North American International Auto Show (NYIAS): popular vehicles that fall into the mainstream on pricing. This includes new SUVs from Acura (RDX), Subaru (Forester) and Toyota (RAV4), and the sixth-generation Altima sedan from Nissan.

You can’t have an auto show without a couple high-end unveils, such as an AMG from Mercedes-Benz. Here are our favorites from NYIAS 2018.

The average price of a new car (out the door, with options) is around $ 35,000. The most interesting vehicle announced above that price was the 2019 Acura RDX compact crossover; its base price will likely be under $ 40,000, making it strong competition for Audi, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz for about $ 5,000 less. The RDX never was a chick-car on the order of a Beetle convertible, but it did sell especially well to women. This one, particularly with the high-performance A-spec trim line, is likely to broaden in appeal. Also, as it grows, RDX gets closer to being a midsize SUV.

The other interesting higher-end cars (see slideshow) are the compact crossover Cadillac XT4 and the full-size Lincoln Aviator. Both companies have been dying for competitive crossovers. You may think of Cadillac as a bunch of sedans plus the Escalade. In fact, the XT5 midsize crossover accounted for 44 percent of all Cadillac sales, and Cadillac’s best-selling sedan (XTS) sold just 16,275 units last year. The brand’s highest-tech sedan, the CT6, the one with Super Cruise, had 10,542 sales in 2017. Also, GMC unveiled its upmarket 2019 Sierra pickups with the multipurpose tailgate here in New York, after Chevrolet showed the mainstream variant, the Silverado, at the Detroit show.

NYIAS wraps up two days of press previews, and then opens to the public today (Friday, March 30) for a 10-day run at New City’s Javits Center. It is the last significant motor show (other than Beijing in late April) until fall 2018.

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