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10 Biggest 2019 New York Auto Show Stories: Mustang Muscles Out Outback, Highlander

06-20_Ford_Mustang_23L-Performance-Pack_AB 2020 Ford Mustang 2.3L Performance Pack | Cars.com photo by Aaron Bragman

Following what felt like a relatively muted showing for major auto shows in Los Angeles, Detroit and Chicago in recent months, the 2019 New York International Auto Show ended car-preview season on a decided high note, featuring exciting debuts from big-selling mainstream models like the Subaru Outback, Toyota Highlander and Hyundai Sonata. But in the end, it took some American muscle to really get Cars.com readers pumped.

Related: More 2019 New York Auto Show News

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Of the dozens of news stories our on-the-scene team of automotive journalists brought you straight from the show floor, it was our preshow walk-around of a special performance pack for the 2020 Ford Mustang that pulled ahead of the pack in terms of popularity. Cars.com reviewer Aaron Bragman got an early preview of the 2020 Ford Mustang EcoBoost 2.3L High Performance Pack.

Don’t let the fact that this pony is powered by a four-cylinder EcoBoost engine fool ya. The 2.3L High Performance Pack takes what wonders Ford has already worked with its EcoBoost and amps it up considerably for your weekend at the track.

04-20_Ford_Mustang_23L-Performance-Pack_AB 2020 Ford Mustang 2.3L Performance Pack | Cars.com photo by Aaron Bragman

“Paired with the 10-speed automatic transmission and placed in the sport mode, the regular EcoBoost Mustang is a hoot,” Bragman wrote. “Amping the horsepower up to 330 and the torque up to 350 pounds-feet is only going to make that even more entertaining, and the torque curve that Mustang engineers have served up with the former Focus RS motor sounds especially sweet; 90 percent of peak torque available from 2,500 to 5,300 rpm? That’s going to be awesome.”

Next up, at No. 2 in our little popularity contest, is the 2019 Audi Q3. The subcompact luxury SUV was wisely redesigned for the 2019 model year, growing considerably in size and improving passenger comfort in the process. Cars.com reviewer Brian Wong found that the overhaul adroitly addresses its predecessor’s weak spots.

04_Audi_Q3_CL 2019 Audi Q3 | Cars.com photo by Christian Lantry

The beloved Toyota Highlander also showed its new self in New York and lands in third on our list. Redesigned for 2020, the three-row SUV “is a little bigger, a little more stylish and a little more tech-savvy – yes, Android Auto will show up in this Toyota, and you can get a 12.3-inch touchscreen in top trim levels,” Cars.com reviewer Fred Meier noted. The new Highlander also gets a revised gas-electric hybrid version and significantly improved fuel economy.

Rounding out the top five is our reviewers’ post-show rundown of who’s hot and who’s not in Winners and Losers, followed by our preview of the 2020 Acura TLX PMC showing you six ways it puts the “special” in “special edition”; those ranked at Nos. 4 and 5, respectively. Meanwhile, the redesigned-for-2020 Subaru Outback fell just outside the top five, at No. 6, while the eye-catching 2020 redesign of the Hyundai Sonata kept the fire alive for non-luxury family sedans at No. 10.

09-20_Subaru_Outback_CL 2020 Subaru Outback | Cars.com photo by Christian Lantry

Did you snooze on news from the City That Never Sleeps? Here are the top 10 news stories out of the 2019 New York International Auto Show that Cars.com readers couldn’t get enough of:

1. 2020 Ford Mustang EcoBoost 2.3L High Performance Pack: Fantastic Four

2. 2019 Audi Q3 Is Bigger, Wiser and More Practical

3. 2020 Toyota Highlander Grows a Little, Gets More Efficient Hybrid

4. 2019 New York Auto Show: Winners and Losers

5. 6 Ways the 2020 Acura TLX PMC Puts the Special in Special Edition

6. 2020 Subaru Outback: Familiar on Its Face, All-New Underneath

7. 2019 New York Auto Show: Best in Show

8. Long for Luxury? Try the 2020 Land Rover Range Rover Velar SVAutobiography Dynamic Edition

9. Is the 2020 Toyota Highlander Interior Any Roomier Than Before?

10. Just How Good Is the 2020 Hyundai Sonata’s Redesign?

05-20_Hyundai_Sonata_CL 2020 Hyundai Sonata | Cars.com photo by Christian Lantry

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