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Dodge is expanding its bragging rights in the full-size pickup truck market, even if sales of the Ram are consistently below rivals Ford F-150 and GMC Sierra/Chevrolet Silverado.
The second iteration of Kia's Sedona minivan arrives at dealers in late 2005 for the 2006 model year. Using a platform shared with the new-for-2006MY Hyundai Sonata (NF) and next-generation Kia Optima, the latest Sedona meets the competition nearly feature for feature.
Toyota plans to add yet another SUV to its lineup with the FJ Cruiser, which launches in early 2006 as a 2007MY vehicle. The FJ Cruiser introduced in Chicago is a development of a 2003 NAIAS concept bearing the same name.
Mercury is getting much needed new-product investment as part of Ford's more new products, faster campaign and had several announcements at the 2005 Chicago auto show.
Though heavily revised for the 2006 model year, Cadillac's largest and best-selling sedan remains as the only front-wheel-drive Cadillac. With the 2006MY, however, the entry falls in line with the current Cadillac naming strategy to wear the name DTS instead of DeVille.
Buick will retires the LeSabre name with its 2006 model-year lineup and replaces it with the Lucerne. Lucerne is a major change and redesign to the LeSabre, which uses the same platform as Cadillac's best-selling sedan. The DeVille is also revised for 2006MY, and renamed DTS.
The Portico concept was shown with Hyundai's Lambda V6, but is being designed to also accommodate a Hyundai hybrid system under development. Both powertrains are expected to be available in a production model.
For the 2006 model year, both Mountaineer and Ford Explorer get a major redesign. To help generate interest in Mercury and display a commitment to the brand, the Mountaineer was introduced at the 2005 Chicago auto show, ahead of the redesigned Explorer and alongside the all-new Milan.
Though the next-generation S-Class is due to arrive later in 2005, at the 2005 Chicago auto show, Mercedes announced the quickest four-door sedan currently available. Along with the S65, Mercedes announced a new 268HP 3.5L DOHC 24v V6 for the E-class range.
Dodge is developing a truck-based mid-size SUV, and the Nitro concept introduced at the 2005 Chicago auto show is a look at what the product might look like. The concept explores adding Dodge's aggressive attitude to a mid-size SUV, looking to the Jeep Liberty for components and a starting platform.
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