L.A. Auto Show wrap: Back to the Future

|By:, SA News Editor

The L.A. Auto Show hit full stride with global automakers tipping off plans to ramp up production and designs to take advantage of the North American demand boom.

Honda (HMC), Toyota (TM), and Hyundai (HYMLF) pounded home the commitment they will make to hydrogen fuel cells. This is no flux capacitor chatter. All three plan to invest to have fuel cell models on the U.S. market within two years, although details on charging station infrastructure are sketchy.

General Motors (GM) was the talk of the town as the Chevy Colorado truck impressed analysts mightily and looks set to give challengers from Nissan and Toyota a run for their money.

BMW (BAMXY), Porsche (VLKAY, POAHF), and Mercedes-Benz (DDAIF) all have big plans for the luxury market, while Kia enters the segment as a darkhorse with the K900. Kia?

On the zero-emission front, Honda was full of swagger by landing a major green award for the new hybrid Honda Accord on gaudy fuel economy ratings.

Automakers to watch: Subaru (FUJHY) and Chrysler (FIATY) look well-positioned for 2014 market share gains. Tesla (TSLA) CEO Elon Musk is off monitoring his latest Space X rocket, while the Tesla debate gets even livelier on SA.