And now for something completely different…
At the 2016 New York International Auto Show, car companies made good on that promise. During press previews, we got a look at the promising next generation of green cars. Maybe there weren’t reveals of half-concealed electric car fantasies of the future per se, but we saw some actual models that will appear in actual U.S. dealerships this year.
Whether you are in the market for a car that gets superior economy or like seeing vehicles that reduce the amount of emissions required to drive to the local McDonald’s, NYIAS 2016 delivered. Here are the five green car highlights of the event.
1. Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid
Hyundai did not disclose whether it would release one, two, or all three models of the Ioniq line, but it ended up giving us the entire suite. What’s remarkable about the hybrid debut is its economy. The automaker plans for it to top Toyota Prius in both the base and Eco models . That means it will get better than 56 miles per gallon combined. Wow, indeed.
2. Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV
While we did not get essential details like all-electric range or miles per gallon equivalency, we did see the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV and got confirmation it will debut in the fall. This reveal has been a long time coming for Europe’s best-selling plug-in vehicle. Slotting in below luxury models like the BMW X5 xDrive40e and the Volvo XC90, we expect it to be a big seller in America.
3. Hyundai Ioniq EV
Right now, there is the Tesla Model S above 200 miles of range, the Nissan Leaf SV at 107 miles of range, and every other electric vehicle. Hyundai plans to make a splash with the Ioniq EV that will offer about 110 miles of range on a full charge and styling that won’t make drivers feel like they are part of a science experiment. Pricing will be key for the success of this electric car, but it’s a welcome addition to the scene.
4. Toyota Prius Prime
Toyota built up anticipation with its teaser prior to NYIAS and then delivered the goods with Prius Prime, a plug-in hybrid capable of 22 miles on electric power and 120 miles per gallon equivalent. Both marks are music to green car drivers’ ears, and the automaker emphasized how you can get a full charge on a household 110v outlet in 5.5 hours. Equally welcome is the styling that skews Mirai rather than 2016 Prius.
5. Hyundai Ioniq Plug-in Hybrid
Third but not least of the Ioniq trio, the plug-in hybrid model shares the headlights in common with the EV and grille in common with the hybrid. Otherwise, it packs a unique battery pack giving it “over 25 miles” of range and a dual-clutch transmission Hyundai believes will outperform some of the CVTs in the segment. Ioniq aims to give green car consumers the whole slate of electrified choices in one nameplate, and they’ll all be in U.S. dealerships in 2016.