Civic

Honda surprised the auto show crowds late on Wednesday with this wild green concept version of the upcoming new Civic compact. The all-new Civic will arrive at U.S. dealers this fall. Source: Honda Motor Co.

The New York International Auto Show swung into its second day on Thursday, and once again a slew of automakers stepped up to unveil their latest offerings.

Yesterday, we brought you coverage of the emerging battle of big American luxury sedans, as the Lincoln and Cadillac brands each opened the show with their takes on a big classic American luxury car. But we also told you that the most important new car at the show might be a Chevy -- specifically, the very impressive new-for-2016 Malibu.

We still think the Malibu was probably the biggest news of the show -- although Honda's (NYSE:HMC) surprising new Civic might have upstaged it. But that doesn't mean the other debuts weren't important to their makers.

Nissan's (NASDAQOTH:NSANY) new Maxima wasn't much of a surprise, as the automaker had shown it off in a Super Bowl ad. The latest version of Nissan's big sedan continues the "four-door sports car" theme set by its predecessors, with a 300-horsepower iteration of the automaker's well-regarded 3.5 liter V6 that offers better fuel economy than the outgoing model -- and the long list of high-tech safety features that seems to have become part of the offerings of even the cheapest new cars.

Images

Nissan showed off its curvy new Maxima sedan in New York on Thursday. Source: Nissan.

Like other full-size sedans, the Maxima isn't a particularly big seller these days. Nissan sold about 50,000 in the U.S. last year, compared to over 335,000 units of the one-size-down Altima that has helped the company surge past Honda in the U.S. sales rankings. Still, the profits in the segment can be significant, particularly if an automaker sells a lot of well-optioned units, and the Maxima remains an important part of Nissan's U.S. lineup.

Toyota (NYSE:TM) showed off a model that could be a bigger seller: a new hybrid version of the company's extremely popular RAV4 crossover. Toyota is the world's No. 1 seller of hybrids, and the new RAV4 Hybrid will be the eighth hybrid in the company's U.S. lineup when it arrives at dealers this fall. The company hasn't yet released fuel-economy figures for the new vehicle, but past experience with Toyotas suggests they'll be at or near the top of the compact-SUV class.

Images

Toyota's RAV4 Hybrid will arrive at U.S. dealers this fall. Source: Toyota.

There was much more to see on day two, and we took our camera to all corners of the show floor to capture it for you. In the short video below, you'll see our firsthand takes on Honda's wild new Civic Concept (despite the name, this vehicle is headed for production), the important new Lexus RX SUV (and its very impressive grill), and an all-new version of General Motors' (NYSE:GM) tiny (but not as tiny as you'd think) Chevrolet Spark. 

It's all here in our latest video report. Check it out, and then scroll down to leave a comment with your thoughts.

John Rosevear owns shares of Ford and General Motors. Rex Moore has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Ford and General Motors. The Motley Fool owns shares of Ford. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.