"Concept cars" at the auto show in Detroit - 13abc.com Toledo (OH) News, Weather and Sports

"Concept cars" at the auto show in Detroit

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The North American International Auto Show opens to the public on Saturday in Detroit, but we've had a team of reporters inside all week for a preview.

13abc's Christine Long is inside the Cobo Center on Wednesday with a look at this year's concept cars.

These vehicles and the ideas that drive them may or may not ever make it into mass production and out on the roads, but they have a cutting edge "cool" factor that makes the auto show more than a sales floor without the pressure to buy.

The DeLorean -- made famous in the "Back to the Future" trilogy with its stainless steel panels, gull-wing doors, and fiberglass underbody -- was a concept car back in 1976.

Fast forward in time 38 years to 2014, the auto show in Detroit is showcasing the designs of the future.

"We've gone completely off the charts with the idea," says Ken Smith, a Nissan product specialist.

Nissan debuts its burnt orange sports sedan concept car, which looks like a sculpture boasting a floating roof line design.

It's proportioned low and wide.

"This is a possible look at where we're going with sedans," says Smith. "It's not boring, not vanilla, we want to have all the Nissan embodiment and we think this really has it."

The Toyota FT-1 looks like the ultimate sports car with a fighter jet wrap-around windshield display, a raised spoiler, and deep scoops near the doors. By the way, FT stands for "Future Toyota."

The Volkswagen Beetle Dune is a wider, off-road bug with a pair of skis buckled in the spoiler on the back.

This is the Kia GT4 Stinger. The turbocharged four cylinder engine packs 315 horsepower.

The Honda FCEV Concept is a fuel cell car.

"Hydrogen is the most plentiful element in the universe. It's a carrier of energy," says Robert Bienenfeld, the Assistant Vice President of Environment and Energy Strategy for American Honda Motor Company.

It's a hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric vehicle.

If the FCEV ever goes into production, Bienenfeld says it would be marketed in California where the state is subsidizing the construction of hydrogen fueling stations.

"The reception has been exciting," says Bienenfeld. "It's a very futuristic looking car. We think this gives clues to the direction of this car that will come out in just a few years."

Beyond concept cars, one company with a throwback to the future is pushing wearable technology: Google Glass.

"Everything that you can do on your Mobile App, you can do on the Google Glass," says Tim Evavold, the Director of Automotive Delivery for Covisint. "So I can find my car, I can search restaurants or points of interest, download directions to my car, I can unlock my car, start my car."

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