2024 New Cars and Trucks of Note
It’s time for my every-now-and-then rundown of new cars and trucks that I think will be of interest to BCMS members. As has been the case for the past 10 years or so, battery electric vehicles (BEVs) are increasingly “the future”, but the internal combustion engine isn’t going away, mostly because the current BEV state of the art isn’t where it needs to be yet. Once a BEV can go 400 miles on a charge regardless of the ambient temperature and fully charge in 10 minutes or less electric vehicles will be mainstream. They’ll get there, probably soon, but they’re not there yet.
Anyway, here’s my list of 2024 vehicles that you should pay attention to.
Acura ZDX: ten years ago the weird Gen 1 ZDX was dropped by Acura with almost no one noticing. Soon Honda’s luxury arm will launch the ZDX Gen 2, a conventional looking SUV with an all-electric powertrain (think BEV MDX). Will it succeed? It can’t do worse than the previous ZDX.
2012 Acura ZDX
2024 Acura ZDX
Cadillac Celestiq: featuring either an ultra-modern or ugly exterior design depending on your point of view, the upcoming BEV Cadillac flagship promises a beautiful interior and premium buying experience that’s meant to rival Bentley. Even base models will offer 300mi range, 600HP, a full-glass roof with variable opacity, and GM’s best Super Cruise autonomous driving system. It’ll be expensive though, with an expected starting price of around $340,000.
BMW M5 wagon: BMW must have hated watching the Mercedes E63S and Audi RS6 “hyper wagons” get showered with kudos from the automotive press because they’ve responded with a station wagon version of their delicious M5 sedan. A 600HP turbocharged V8 AWD soccer mom-mobile? Yes please!
Ford Mustang: yes it’s, “just a refresh”, but I’m going to play this up because this is likely the last ICE pony car ever now that the Chevrolet Camaro and Dodge Challenger are dead. The base engine is a 330HP turbo-4, the GT’s V8 has 450, and a 500HP Coyote V8 powers the Dark Horse track version. And the manual lives on! For driving enthusiasts the Mustang is as good as it gets.
Tesla Cybertruck: I’ve read about the clever bed that can haul or store almost anything and the impressive specs, but I can’t get past the cartoon-ish design that says to me (and probably most Texans), “Tesla’s not serious about pickup trucks”.
Hyundai Santa Fe: Hyundai’s Rav4 competitor has always been a just Ok wannabe until now. Wow, Hyundai surprised everyone with a new Santa Fe that brings the action with a Land Cruiser/Land Rover Defender vibe and extra off-road chops. Expect this SUV to have the same impact on the Toyota Rav4/Honda CRV market as the Palisade did on the Toyota Highlander/Honda Pilot market.
Toyota Land Cruiser: I’ve said since 2008 (along with many others) that the last generation Land Cruiser was too big, and Toyota listened. The 2024 LC is on the same platform as the 4Runner, and it looks like a winner with a tough-guy design and serious off-road ability. The legend continues.
Volvo EX30: a cool compact BEV from Volvo with an enticing $35,000 starting price that will appeal to young singles and couples who want to help the environmental cause.
BMW i5: basically a BEV version of the venerable 5-series, the i5 gets you lots of BMW goodness in an all-electric package. Families will probably prefer the BEV iX SUV, but many others will appreciate an electric car that’s designed to drive like a BMW.
Lucid Gravity: finally a Lucid SUV! The Saudi-funded BEV company started life with the Air, a luxury BEV sedan that cost around $120,000. Good looking car, but it didn’t sell. Enter the Gravity, a luxury SUV with 440 miles of range, 7-seats, and a starting price of under $100,000. Lucid and Saudi Arabia hope you like it.
Lexus GX: the new mid-size Lexus SUV gets a major update with a much better looking exterior and 346HP turbo V6 powertrain. The last version had a V8 but looked completely bland. Thank you Lexus for replacing it with an SUV with better emissions and more personality.
Volkswagen ID. Buzz: Volkswagen has been teasing us with “coming soon” modern VW Microbuses since forever. Finally we’re going to get one with the BEV ID. Buzz. It’s all electric and looks sensational. I hope it sells.
Porsche 911: the 992.2 gen 911 launches soon, and the good news is that Porsche wants it to be more available. While the fact that supply chain problems have been mostly fixed means that it will be, Porsche has decided to bump the pricing significantly. Bummer. It’s still the car that successful BCMS member want, so deal with it, I guess.