Wed. Feb 1st, 2023

    What should we expect to arrive in automotive world this year? Everyone seems to cover all “new.” I decided to focus mostly on new models being introduced and EVs…

The Porsche Macan

    Porsche is working more on synthetic fuels, but it’s not ignoring the ever-expanding electric market with the Macan. Apparently, they’re being tight lipped with specifics because they’re working out quirks. But the gas version has been axed, so electric it is. Well, will be?

    Hyundai has jumped in, over the past few years, feet, hands, and headfirst with their Ioniq models. The one due this year is the version of the Ioniq 7 with recharge capability in 5 minutes of 62 miles. Recharge times just keep getting better. The Automobile Critic would not recommend electrics as your main and only vehicle, but a secondary vehicle? Yes. One thing he would like to see is all across the brands is standards. Different charging connectors and batteries just keep people from buying electric. And all brands should be upgrade capable.
    Yes, good luck with that. Corporations are so hooked on proprietary they are willing to commit corporate suicide. And that’s not just automotive.
    Expected second half of 2023 with a 400 mile range. Wow.

$50-60K appx

The Audi E-tron GT

    Lost in Space-ish, “Warning! Warning! Warning!” …from yours truly. In the 80’s I drove a lot of Audis for a dealer. Fine cars, but as the company mechanic said, “The problem they have is with their venders.” One major one was electronic. OK, it was the 80’s, but still an electric car from a company that has had a lot of electric problems. Damn, I might as well buy a Volt. Damn again!? NEVER MIND!
    5-80% charge in a little over 22 minutes? What’s not to like about that part? Lots of power (do be aware the Audis I drove tended to be tanks which cut back on pick up and speed.)

Over $100,000

VinFast

    Vietnam: for all the years we fought those who took over the South, now we trade with them. I noticed this first about 20 years ago when computers came into my clients all over the east coast marked “Made in Vietnam.” Proving Afghanistan wasn’t the only country “abandoned” by the party in power. In fact, it’s arguable both abandonments were bipartisan in nature.
    That having been typed I have NO idea what quality may be. If communist and former communist countries are any indication, I wouldn’t open my wallet without a decent ounce of skepticism. BTW, it’s not just Communism. Arguably British, Italian and French cars might be included in that.
    All wheel drive. The batteries require a subscription? Oh, that gives me confidence, I type cynically. However, IF held to by VinFast, might be a good thing: like an extended warranty. Some wiseass might type, “Will they cover the people burned up in battery fires?” No more than motorhome fires (I’ve need more than one.) Car fires. (A regular feature in Nashville where we lived for over 40 years.) But, hell, there are all those burned-out Teslas we DIDN’T see in Nashville.
    2024 is the goal for localizing manufacturing in the US. I assume before that have to be shipped like those computers.

$46-58 appx is the plan.

Volvo’s Polestar

    I admit: I have mixed feelings about Volvo from friends who had them in the past. Drove a few that seemed cheap. But that was long ago on a planet R2D2 far away. Kind of in the middle of the higher range, if that holds. BTW, not that clear cost-wise.
    Two battery sizes are offered for those who want the most, and those who’d rather go cheap. Meant as a rival for the Tesla 3.

$60,000 appx

Nissan ARIYA

    I admit I have a prejudice here. Nissan has mostly been skipped over in the press and by the overwhelming focus on Tesla. If you compare replacement cost on a Leaf v. a Tesla: no comparison. Nissan is cheaper and still had great distance, considering past electrics. It’s competitive. We shall see with this one.
    We have considered a Leaf, test drove one.
    But I’ll Joe Friday this one. Facts, as far as we know,
    
    Quite a few models, so…

$43,000 plus to slightly over 60,000 appx

    All of this could change, and there are many upstarts, which reminds me of the early days of gas driven automobiles. The conditions sucked at the time. I’m sure there were plenty of naysayers, but ingenuity and inventiveness continued to hold sway. Then the government brought us seatbelts, airbags, better gas mileage, less toxic exhaust, more miles per car. Some car companies did try adding many of these improvements, but most were Tucker-ed by the big guys. One wonders if, maybe, instead of regulating more we might try more programs to encourage such initiative, or at least more of a mix. Give the upstarts more of a chance.

                                       -30-

    The Automotive Critic is a column by Ken Carman, who has been writing a weekly column since 1972 called Inspection, as a beer judge several beer judging and beer industry-based columns. Ken is also the author of Autocide: which he started researching over 20 years ago. Autocide is alternative automobile history filled with funs, odd twists and quirky characters. He has been into cars, working with cars as part of his job, since he bought his first car: a 61 Lark, at 14. Mr. Carman lives in Eagle Bay and Beaver River, NY.
©2023
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
all rights reserved

By Ken Carman

Entertainer, provider of educational services, columnist, homebrewer, collie lover, writer of songs, poetry and prose... humorist, mediocre motorcyclist, very bad carpenter, horrid handyman and quirky eccentric deluxe.

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