Electrified Debuts Dominate the Scene
Most of the vehicles debuting at the 2022 Los Angeles Auto Show were powered by some sort of electricity. Not all were, of course, as there is still plenty of interest around gasoline-propelled cars, SUVs and trucks. Here, in alphabetical order, are the World or North American debuts.
Fiat stopped selling the Cinquecento, or 500e, in the United States (in reality California and Oregon only) in 2019. We reviewed the last year of this small but fun EV, noting its limitations, not the least of which was an 84-mile driving range. As a city car, this is fine, but it didn’t make it viable as all other electric cars had the ability to go a whole lot further. Fiat announced the 500e is returning in 2024 with a 150-mile range and an updated exterior and interior. A big difference in the last generation 500e and the new model is the 2024 is built on a dedicated EV platform, not merely a battery and motor dropped into the gasoline version. We expect it to be a blast to drive, and will review it when we have the chance to get behind the wheel. Fino ad allora, Arrivederci!
- 2023 Genesis Electrified GV70
Clean Fleet Report got a look at the all-new 2023 Electrified GV70 a couple weeks before the Los Angeles Auto Show, and posted this sneak preview story. It’s another solid entry in the luxury compact SUV field.
If this comes to market, oh boy! Genesis (part of the Hyundai Motor Group that also includes Kia and Hyundai) already has some of the best-looking cars and SUVs, so adding the Genesis X Convertible Concept EV would just be one more bit of beautiful design to oogle.
- • 2023 Hyundai Ioniq 6 EV
While many car companies are dropping sedans from their line-ups, Hyundai not only believes in them, but does so in a big way. The Ioniq 6 EV is a delight to look at with its slippery aerodynamic shape that has a ridiculous 0.21 drag coefficient. Built with sustainable materials where possible, the Ioniq 6 is the next all-electric vehicle from Hyundai following the Ioniq 5 that was released a year ago. No on sale date or pricing has been announced.
First launched in 2021, Kia has done a major refresh on its compact utility vehicle, the 2024 Seltos. Updates for the second generation Seltos include 20 additional horsepower from the turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder gasoline engine that now pumps-out 195 horsepower.
The grille is larger, and the front lighting now integrates fog and daytime running lights. Also new for 2024 is the X Line trim Seltos that offers a bespoke front grille and 18-inch wheels, roof rack and gloss black exterior accents. Available in all-wheel drive, the Seltos also comes in LX, S, EX and SX trims with three new colors of Pluton Blue, Fusion Black and Valais Green. Pricing will be released just before going on sale in spring 2023.
- • 2023 Lucid Air Pure EV
The Air Pure will begin deliveries in December 2022 with dual motors, all-wheel drive, 480 horsepower, 3.8 seconds to 60 miles per hour, and a 410-mile driving range. The rear-wheel drive (RWD) Air Pure will be available in 2023. The Lucid Air Pure is the company’s entry-level model with a starting price at $87,400 (for the RWD version).
Lucid didn’t reveal much information about the seven-passenger Gravity, its first SUV, that will share the floor with the Air sedan line-up. The Gravity will be built on the Lucid Air skateboard platform that is configurable and flexible enough to be used on different vehicles. No on sale date or pricing was announced.
With only 2,500 units being sold worldwide, the Limited Edition 911 Dakar will be offered with a design package replicating the winning 911 from the 1984 Dakar Rally. This all-wheel drive coupe is powered by a 3.0-liter twin-turbo boxer engine making 473 hp and 420 lb.-ft. of torque, good for a 0-60 mph time of 3.2 seconds. The 8-speed PDK automatic transmission will drive the stock Pirelli P Zero summer performance tires, or the optional Pirelli Scorpion Plus all-terrain tires. The 911 Dakar will be in dealers in Spring 2023, with a base price of $223,450.
- 2024 Subaru Impreza Hatchback
All-new, the sixth-generation Impreza loses the sedan and is now only available as a 5-door hatchback. The base Impreza has a 2.0-liter 4-cylinder boxer engine good for 152 hp and 145 lb.-ft. of torque. To make things even more fun, the Impreza RS trim level has a 2.5-liter, 182 hp boxer engine with 178 lb.-ft. of torque. The manual transmission of the previous generation is gone, so all 2024 Impreza models come with a continuously variable transmission (CVT). Pricing has not been released, but expect an on-sale date of spring 2023.
- Toyota BZ Compact SUV Concept EV
“BZ” in Toyota talk means Beyond Zero, the company’s new sub-brand for all-electric vehicles that began with the introduction of the 2023 BZ4X. If the BZ Compact SUV Concept becomes a production model, it would take Toyota into design territory it has never tread before. The BZ Concept shown at the Los Angeles Auto Show had flared fenders to accommodate the 21-inch wheels, no unnecessary fender cladding and a light bar nose that connected the radical inverse C-shaped daytime running lights. The tail features a crisp, sharp edge housing the LED tail lights. Make no mistake, if this is the future of Toyota design, then the company is onto something great. No production information was provided.
- 2023 Toyota Prius Hybrid and Prius Prime Plug-in Hybrid
The all-new 2023 Prius and Prius Prime are not merely a continuation of the outgoing models, but completely redesigned cars with a more powerful engine and a sleek design. Go here for our earlier preview of these two important cars for Toyota.
- VinFast VF6, VF7, VF8 and VF9 EVs
VinFast, the upstart car company from Vietnam, brought four all-electric models to the LA Auto Show: the VF6, VF7, VF8 and VF9. Ranging in size from compact to large SUVs, they have an innovative battery subscription program. VinFast’s summary is: “Customers will pay a monthly subscription fee where VinFast bears responsibility for battery repairs, maintenance, and replacement costs to provide a worry-free experience for the life of the vehicle.” Pricing and on sale dates for the United States have not been announced although they have already started setting up a dealer network.
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Story by John Faulkner. Photos by Lex Adams, John Faulkner and the manufacturers.