The New York International Auto Show hosts more than a million visitors every year, and we are excited to report on the biggest news from day one. From a 120 MPGe Toyota to a 565-hp Nissan GT-R, an all-new pair of Subaru Imprezas, and a $72,000 Maserati SUV, NYIAS did not disappoint.
Electric cars solve a lot of problems. They don’t pollute, they can be recharged at home overnight, and they save owners money by eliminating the need for gasoline.
The trouble is, electric cars could end up being remembered as the right cars that happened at the wrong time.
The quality, reliability, comfort, and driving range of electric vehicles are better than ever before. They offer a gas-free way to commute to work and the peace-of-mind of driving on clean energy.
What EVs don’t have is the right timing. Gas prices are still hovering around $2 per gallon, so it’s hard for car buyers to justify the added cost and limited range when compared to a gas-powered car.
For an electric car to succeed in an era of cheap gas, it needs to have something special. Keep reading for the electric cars that should thrive regardless of gas prices.
You’ll laugh the first time you see a narrow car on the road.
There aren’t many just yet, so unless you’re driving the streets of Japan, San Francisco, Los Angeles, or Seattle, your odds of seeing a narrow car are about the same as stumbling across a traveling fleet of motorized La-Z-Boys.
Narrow cars do exist, however, and it seems they might be starting to pick up steam, at least judging by media coverage for the last month or so.
The most famous narrow car in the news right now is the Toyota i-Road, a 3-wheel tandem 2-seater that is testing in Japan. It’s funny looking, but the i-Road, and cars like it, could shape the future of mobility.
The price of electric cars is quickly falling into the $30,000 range. The Nissan Leaf, the upcoming Chevy Bolt, and, presumably, next year’s Tesla Model 3, will all be available for about the price of the average new car.
Infrastructure for charging electric vehicles is becoming more common and people are getting used to their limited range. Part of the reason for less range-anxiety is because cars are going farther on a single charge and taking less time to recharge.
Amidst the looming mass-adaption of EVs by consumers around the country, another type of alternative-fuel vehicle is starting to hit the market.
But is it too late for hydrogen fuel cell vehicles?
Soon a $37,000, 200-mile electric vehicle will arrive on the market. The car could be the one that finally ushers in the era of the affordable, high-range, mass-produced electric car.
This car is well along in its development and will be available to purchase in the coming year.
The car’s designers made aerodynamics a top priority, so it slips effortlessly through the air. When in motion, wind flows around the vehicle from the headlamps to the rear wheels. The aluminum body and smooth proportions cut down on weight and drag to increase both range and acceleration. Plus, the bottom of the car is completely flat, since there aren’t any exhaust bits that need to be kept cool.
Yes, this car could be a game changer.
Oh, and Tesla is building one, too.
Last week I wrote about seven Detroit Auto Show debuts to watch. The only one I got remotely wrong was the 2017 Chrysler Town & Country, but that was only because FCA pulled a fast one and changed that vehicle’s name to the Chrysler Pacifica.
Here are the five vehicles that made the biggest impact at the North American International Auto Show, which runs through Jan. 24 at Detroit’s Cobo Hall.
The automotive industry could change more in the next five years than it did in the last 50.
Think about the last five decades. We’ve seen cars get bigger, faster, safer, and more fuel efficient, but we haven’t seen any radical changes in the way cars are built, marketed, sold, or driven. Our car culture is built on a fossil-fueled desire for personal transportation and the freedom to go wherever we please whenever we choose.
Things are changing, though. Ride-sharing programs are gaining in popularity and cars that can drive themselves don’t seem to be very far behind.
Here’s one of the surest signs of coming change: General Motors just placed a $500 million bet that ride sharing is the wave of the future.
Welcome to 2016, friends.
If the Chinese did their calendar correctly, this would have been the year of the car. I mean, the year of the monkey is all well and good, but 2016 will be among the best in a long time as far as new car debuts go.
There are a few cars, though, that aren’t available yet but should set the pace for excitement in 2016. Are you ready for these?
It would be considered sacrilege to change some things in the auto industry.
Specifically, I’m thinking of things like the shape of the Porsche 911, the rear-wheel-drive Mustang, and the V8 Corvette. A 911 with a boxier shape, a front-wheel-drive ‘Stang, or a 4-cylinder Corvette just might be enough to throw the earth off its orbit and disrupt the threads that hold our society together.
It’s pretty safe to say that none of those things will ever happen, but a new trademark filing by General Motors has some Corvette purists wondering if their beloved American supercar will trade its fossil fuel power for a set of recharging electrons.
If you’re one of the people who doesn’t believe Chevy would ever mess with the formula that made the Corvette an American legend, you might want to sit down for this one:
Electric cars are the transportation solution of the future, but that future might be farther away than we think.
There’s so much talk about automakers increasing the number of EVs in their fleets by 2020 that we might start believing an all-EV future is right around the corner. California has toyed with the idea of banning the sale of new gas-powered vehicles by 2030 and Norway has proposed eliminating new internal-combustion car sales by 2025.
Green Car Reports says,
If laws were passed tomorrow to limit the number of new internal-combustion cars, it would likely take almost two decades to bring half the overall fleet in that jurisdiction to electric propulsion.
No law outright banning operation of any vehicle with a tailpipe has been proposed anywhere, as far as we know, even in Norway.
Like it or not, we can be sure that gas-powered cars will account for our transportation needs for many decades to come.