Chrysler to unveil 200 ragtop in Chicago

Automotive News reports on planned vehicle launches at the upcoming Chicago Auto Show.

Automotive News
2 min read
Chrysler 200 convertible
The 2011 Chrysler 200 convertible, like the 200 sedan, is a Sebring that has undergone big changes. It will be unveiled at the Chicago Auto Show. Chrysler

The 2011 Chrysler 200 convertible and the 2012 Acura TL are among the vehicles that will be unveiled this week at the Chicago Auto Show. Chevrolet, Dodge, Hyundai, Volkswagen, and Chrysler's Ram division also are planning world debuts.

While Toyota will not have a world debut, the automaker is touting its display, which it says will be the largest the Toyota brand has created for a U.S. auto show, covering 45,000 square feet.

As part of the display, an indoor road course will feature Toyota pickups and SUVs. The public will be able to ride in the vehicles as they navigate a series of outdoor-like conditions.

Jeep also will offer rides in various models as consumers maneuver steep man-made hills and other obstacles created inside McCormick Place. Ford will offer rides in the 2011 Explorer crossover, and Chevrolet will offer rides in the Volt plug-in hybrid.

The two-day press preview begins Wednesday.

Normally, a midcycle freshening doesn't merit much attention. But with Acura taking its first steps to undo its controversial "keen edge" styling--specifically, the "beak" nose--that's news. Not only does the 2012 TL get a restyling; the automatic transmission gets another cog, to six speeds.

A power train announcement is expected Tuesday at an unveiling several blocks away from McCormick Place.

Chevy won't reveal what the brand is unveiling until the press conference. Despite what several Web sites are predicting, Chevrolet insiders say the much ballyhooed Camaro Z-28 will not be unveiled in Chicago.

Like the Chrysler 200 sedan, the 2011 200 convertible is a Sebring that has undergone significant surgery. The car receives new front and rear sheet metal, a new grille, new interior, re-engineered suspension, and a new name. Chrysler's new 283-horsepower, 3.6-liter V-6 is optional.

The 200 will be available with two tops, soft and hard, and in three trims: Touring, Limited, and Convertible S. The S model, geared to young buyers who embrace style, will be available in the spring. The entry-level Touring model starts at $27,195, including destination, and the Limited starts at $31,990.

Production of the 200 begins at Chrysler's Sterling Heights, Mich., Assembly Plant this month. Chrysler has not announced when it will arrive in dealerships.

A high-performance version of one of Dodge's vehicles is expected to debut.

The freshened 2012 Hyundai Genesis sedan will debut in Chicago. The car receives a new headlight design, grille, and front fascia. Under the hood is Hyundai's new 400-hp-plus, 5.0-liter V-8, mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. The current model has a six-speed automatic.

Specifics have not been released. However, a truck aimed at carpenters, plumbers, and other tradesmen is expected. This is Ram's first press conference since it was separated from the Dodge brand.

Volkswagen will debut the redesigned 2012 Jetta GTI sedan. The GTI is the performance model for the Jetta line.

(Source: Automotive News)