“Take The Gas Please, But Don’t Dare Take My Car.” If there is a sentiment you might say is underlying the arrival of this year’s LA Auto Show, that would be it.
Coincidentally, there are actually TWO reasons for this. The first is, the unanimous presence of ‘Alt-Fuel’ vehicles: whether Hybrid, Hydrogen, Fuel Cell, Plug-In, or yes, even Pedal-Powered mobility [I saw one cool bicycle!], if you didn’t have a non-gas powered vehicle on the Show floor, you might as well have not even showed up.
The second reason is that with [some parts of] the economy doing better, or at least stabilizing, America seems to be resuming its love affair with cars once again. New Cars.
On that front, the offerings are outstanding, gas or non-gas, with some great new product arriving just in time. Here is my own MoM[S] look from Media Day, in no real order of importance, at this year’s excellent Show:
CODA Automotive: While they are very new – and very young – the sedan that I saw was…early. And sparse. Reminds me of early Hyundai or Kia. And like them, they will need to ramp up their game to make it [as the last two clearly have.] Yes, they supposedly have great E-powered technology. Put all that now in an interesting shell.
Fisker: Sure, gorgeous cars, great tech…and all of it costing way more money than CODA. I’ll still take one, thank you very much.
Finishing up the non-gas-only companies, I had thought that TESLA was amazingly going to miss this party, until I saw the huge buzz they got being in with Toyota on the new RAV4-EV. Good for them. Still would have liked to see the actual TESLA models there too, though. [Guess their financial woes prevented this?]
Chevrolet: Speaking of buzz, I can’t really continue without a nod to Chevy this year, resurrected as they seem to be along with GM proper. The VOLT has hit production, and looks to be the game-changer it was meant to be. Congrats. But I also must go “retro” here, and kick in a mention of the new Camaro. ‘Muscle’ lives on…and not just in the Mustang. The new Camaro Convertible is a monster, should appeal to women, and carries the legacy. Seeing the 4-wheel Brembo disc brakes told me all I need to know!
FIAT is also re-entering the US market, after a 25+ year hiatus. Owning Chrysler has a lot to do with this, of course. Should be a good move for both Make’s overall, though the FIAT 500 looks to me to mostly be a cross between a SMART and a MINI, making this out to possibly be a very tough sell.
LandRover: MoM[S] has long raved about the LRX ‘concept’ vehicle, first seen in 2009. Aside from being a hybrid with many recycled/re-usable parts & components, the angular, futuristic design elements were apparently not the direction LR wanted to go in with this vehicle.
Instead, they merged some – not all – of those elements under the RangeRover label, for the sake of ‘Brand’ identity. This was their decision to make, obviously, but not one I would have liked to see in the case of the LRX.
Jaguar: As I personally Tweeted from the show floor, the C-X75 may be the most gorgeous car I have ever seen. Certainly it is that for this model year. Add in a turbine-powered EV system giving it a ‘green’ element, and it IS the “it” car of the show, the decade, and beyond.
No better place to end, than with the C-X75. See you at the Show~!