With all the changes in the automotive world, there's never a shortage of crazy ideas floating around.
Fortunately for car enthusiasts, many of those wacky ideas actually see the light of day -- and we've got the 10 best for you right here.
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Environmental-friendliness and a concern over high gas prices are the driving forces in today's auto trends, according to Wes Siler, road test editor for the popular car Web site Jalopnik.com.
Siler says the hybrid and "green" car revolution is here to stay, but that the supercar market is a niche one and there'll always be someone willing to shell out big bucks for an exotic ride.
With that in mind, here are 10 of the most outrageous, extravagant, or just plain cool autos to look for in the coming year, from green car to supercar and beyond:
To start off, here's the car that you absolutely can't own, no matter how much money you're willing to spend. Only 20 of these fighter jet-inspired supercars will be made, and they've already sold at over $1 million a piece. Still, it may be one of the most talked-about exotic cars of the past year, and is certainly worth keeping an eye out for on the roads.
For the wannabe-European in all of us, the Smart Fortwo is the new American counterpart to those classic Euro smartcars. Small enough to fit in half a parking space, these zippy little cars can reach up to 90 miles an hour, all while getting 33 miles to the gallon, according to the company specs.
With a base price of only $11,000, it's the perfect replacement for that road-hogging SUV.
If the Fortwo is the cheap transportation alternative for the non-car enthusiast, then the Bugatti Veyron is the dream machine of every supercar fan on the planet. Its 1,001 horsepower will pin you to the seat at over 250 miles per hour, but only for a few minutes. At top speed a tank of gas will last just 12 minutes, so fuel economy is not something to think about when buying this beast.
Most of us regular drivers shouldn't even worry about getting our hands on one, because at just over $1.5 million, the Veyron is one of the most expensive (albeit fastest) cars on the planet.
Somewhere between the Veyron and the Fortwo, there's the new Tesla Roadster.
At first glance its Ferrari-like body, $98,000 price tag and sub-four-second zero-to-60 time look like any other high-performance supercar, but there's a catch. The Tesla is actually the world's first fully electric supercar.
Unlike previous electric cars, the Roadster has no backup gas tank whatsoever, just a rechargeable electric engine that the company claims will get you up to 220 miles on a single charge. Production has already started, so expect to see them hit the streets in the next few months.
International CXTenvironment on this whole list, the International Truck and Engine Corporation recently released the largest production pickup truck on the roads. Built on the same platform as a dump truck, it's the everyday pickup on steroids. The perfect six-figure truck for the boy in all of us who still remembers playing with Tonka Toys when they were younger.
The latest concept truck from Hummer moves even further away from its Army-styled road tanks of the past and into dune buggy territory. Designed as Hummer's competition for the Jeep Wrangler, the HX takes some styling cues from its bigger brothers and adds a few tweaks. What you get is a small, off-road capable, convertible truck that will be a welcome addition for Hummer fans feeling the effects of high gas prices.
Scion has never been accused of making plain cars, and its latest coupe concept is no different. Resembling an orange box with wraparound windows, the Hako will definitely turn heads and create a love it or hate it opinion similar to every Scion car before it. The younger generation is once again Scion's market, as the Hako includes plenty of interior technology, such as Bluetooth phone capability and video cameras instead of side view mirrors, with the images shown on screens inside the doors.
Rolls-Royce Phantom Coupe
Described as less eco-friendly and more ego-friendly, the newest offering from the classically opulent automaker is a two-door sporting car sure to get you noticed. Designed more to be driven and not driven in, in contrast to most previous Rolls models, the Phantom Coupe is sleek, fast and fun. The extravagance continues to the interior, where a "starlight" headliner entertains passengers with flickering lights resembling the night sky.
Jeep's newest concept debuted in auto shows earlier this year and was an immediate topic of conversation. The boldly styled Renegade is an open-air off-road 4x4, but with an electric motor. Jeep uses one of these motors (which get up to 40 miles on a charge) on each axle for true four-wheel drive.
Meanwhile, a backup diesel engine will get you where you need on longer drives. Jeep finishes off the unique design by covering the truck's exterior with rubber accents, hidden storage compartments, and shortened windshield and doors.
Maybach 62 S
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The newest model in the ultra-lavish Maybach lines solidifies the company's understanding of the word "luxury." Even though its turbocharged engine can get all 6,200 pounds accelerating at Ferrari-like speeds, if you're the one driving this car then you're doing it wrong.
It's better thought of as a high-powered limo, and the list of amenities for the passenger section in back is endless. A mini-fridge, wine cooler, leather armchairs for seats, automatic window curtains, auto-tinting glass roof, and personal video screens for every passenger are only the more normal options available.
If you want to be driven around in speed and style, grab about $500,000 and give Maybach a call.