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AS IT IS - Cars Making a Comeback at North American Auto Show

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Cars Making a Comeback at North American Auto Show
Cars Making a Comeback at North American Auto Show

The 2015 North American International Auto Show took a test drive in the U.S. city of Detroit, Michigan. It was the first major international car show in the U.S.

Automobile manufacturers from around the world presented over 500 car models. Many manufacturers featured cars powered by electricity. But lower oil prices still keep cars powered by gasoline popular among drivers.

Aaron Bragman is a car expert who works for cars.com. He says many car ideas seemed to be popular at this year's auto show.

"We're seeing a lot of variety of product. Luxury vehicles, electric vehicles, concept cars now apparently are making a comeback. So, there's no one theme except that the industry is back."

Mary Barra is the chief executive officer of General Motors. She presented the company's new electric car, called the Chevy Bolt. The Chevy Bolt may be the first fully electric car that will be popular with drivers. It can go longer than most other electric cars -- 320 kilometers before it needs to be recharged. It also costs around $30,000, about the average price for a new car in the U.S.

The Strati from Local Motors
The Strati from Local Motors

And, Mary Barra says the Chevy Bolt is also more functional than any other electric vehicle on the market.

"Trust me, this is no stripped-down science experiment. The Bolt EV concept offers unexpected functionality and technology with proportions and flexibility of a crossover. It's an all-electric vehicle for the real world."

The Chevy Bolt will be available to consumers after 2017.

But the U.S. market may see another futuristic car as early as this year. The small carmaker Local Motors plans to introduce a vehicle called The Strati. The car has a 3-D printed body. The motor and other parts are based on designs by the French automobile manufacturer Renault.

Jay Rogers is the CEO of Local Motors. He says printing the electric car takes about 44 hours.

"We hope by the end of the year to be closer to 24 hours, and then we'd hope be able to get it down to somewhere between 10 and 12 hours total."

A lot of new models with gas engines are more expensive. German automobile manufacturer Mercedes presented its new four-door sedan, the GLE Coupe. Porsche exhibited a new car model called the 911 Targa 4 with a 430 horsepower engine.

​And American car manufacturer Ford presented its first muscle car in more than ten years, its GT supercar. The supercar has a more fuel-efficient engine than other cars like it on the market. The car also has more than 600 horsepower.

The Acura NSX
The Acura NSX

The Japanese manufacturers of the Acura presented what it called a "super-hybrid" vehicle, the NSX. It has three electric motors providing more than 550 horsepower. The NSX can run in four different modes: Quiet, Sport, Sport + or Track. Each mode creates a different engine sound.

The 2015 North American International Auto Show ended January 25. Organizers have not yet decided where next year's auto show will take place.

I'm Jonathan Evans.

George Putic reported this story from Washington. Jonathan Evans wrote it for Learning English. Kelly Jean Kelly was the editor.

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Words in This Story

exhibit – v. to place an object or a collection of objects in a public space for people to look at

horsepower n. a unit used to measure the power of engines

muscle carn. an American-made two-door sports car with a powerful engine

sedann. a car that has four doors and that has room for four or more people

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