The year 2021 was a really busy year for most automobile makers as a number of them were focused on delivering electric vehicles. It’s 2022 and the momentum is still the same, as automobile giants showcase their prized EV models at the Consumer Electronics Show which happened last week.
The event proved the fact that truly there is something from everyone, from brand new Mercedes with unbelievably long-range to a BMW electric crossover that has the ability to change colours and a host of other fantastic EV inventions. Below, we discuss the five most talked-about electric vehicles displayed at CES 2022.
Mercedes Vision EQXX
We kick off with the Mercedes Vision EQXX. When it comes to driving range, nothing can beat Mercedes’ compact luxury vehicle that can run up to 1,000 kilometres (621 miles) on a single charge, having developed a “radical” new highly-efficient system it believes could put an end to “range anxiety” among drivers. The vehicle can achieve an outstanding energy efficiency of 0.167 kWh per mile. If you ask around, that presents a case of 40% more efficiency compared to Tesla’s 2020 Model 3 Standard Range Plus, which is perceived as the most efficient EV in the market today.
The EV presents compact features like the solar panels built into its roof and also a 100 per cent leather-free interior. The Vision EQXX is unarguably the most advanced electric vehicle built by Mercedes under its EQ series made from lightweight, sustainable materials and a boasting battery that consumes less than 10 kilowatt-hours of electricity for every 612 miles driven on the road. The German carmaker has promised that the Vision EQXX will eventually be a production car.
BMW iX Flow
Mercedes’ German rival, BMW, didn’t come to CES 2022 to impress us with the range or charging time like its rival. Instead, the company offered us the BMW iX Flow, with an unexpected feature of changing colours. The “Flow” concept version of the BMW iX was inspired by the company’s pursuit of customer-friendly choices to add loads of cosmetic versatility to what’s admittedly a pretty pricey purchase. The EV makes a case for anyone who purchases a black car and probably regretted it because of how fast it reveals the lack of washing it.
Owners of the prestigious BMW iX Flow can simply change the colour of the car’s exterior at the touch of a button. The underlying technology for this is called the “E Ink Prism,” which shares similarities to the electronic ink used in e-readers. “E Ink Prism” consists of millions of electrophoretic ink microcapsules laminated onto a roll of plastic film. The film is originally designed for architecture and design industries. When stimulated by electrical signals controlled by a phone app, the material brings different pigments to the surface, causing the car to take on a different shade or design, such as racing stripes.
According to a statement by BMW, “The body is laminated with an electrophoretic film containing microcapsules the diameter of a human hair. Each capsule contains differently charged white, black, or coloured particles which become visible when an electric field is applied. This creates what is known as an Electronic Paper Display (EPD).”
So far, the colour-changing is limited to only black, white, and every shade of grey in between. According to BMW, it’s working hard at advancing the underlying tech to include more colours. In the meantime, seeing the colour transition happen right before your eyes is nothing short of impressive enough.
Sony Vision-S 02
A lot of people associate Sony with gaming and electronics, but with electric cars, it feels strange but we would all get used to it. Sony unveiled its progress on electric cars at CES 2022. The company unveils the Sony Vision-S 02, the second iteration of the Vision-S electric vehicle which was introduced to the public at last year’s CES. Reports say that Sony began 5G driving tests of the Vision-S 01 on public roads in Europe in April 2021 and continues to use the vehicle to test new technologies aimed at providing new electric and autonomous mobility experiences.
The aspiration behind the Vision-S series is driven by the goal of achieving level 4 autonomous driving in the future. Right now, the electrical innovation is only at level 2 autonomy, which means that a driver is required to stay alert at all times. The new Vision-S 02 SUV prototype will serve a similar purpose, using the same EV and cloud platform as the Vision-S 01 and tested on public roads. For now, the chances that Sony will mass-produce either of the Vision-S series are very low. However in a bit to accelerate efforts dedicated to EV, Sony announced plans to establish its own automobile unit, Sony Mobility Inc., by the spring of 2022.
Sony claims that the Vision-S system provides “intuitive driver interaction in conjunction with the vehicle’s sound system and HMI system so that the driver can accurately judge the status of the surrounding environment, such as the presence of emergency vehicles, even from inside the vehicle.”
Chrysler Airflow Concept
Ast week at the CES 2022 event, Chrysler marks its entry into the EV space with the Chrysler Airflow. Many say that the automobile giant’s entry into the electric vehicle market is quite late. Chrysler Airflow boasts a range of 350 to 400 miles and fast charging functionality. The car is also incorporated with Stellantis’ self-driving technology, the “STLA AutoDrive” system, which promises Level 3 autonomous driving at some point in the future. Level 3 autonomy permits drivers to take eyes off the road some of the time. According to reports the most advanced self-driving systems that are available currently are classified as Level 2 autonomy. However, Airflow is a concept vehicle, and wouldn’t be available anytime soon as production is expected to begin around 2025. Chrysler will go from having no electric vehicles to as many as three by 2028.
Chevy Silverado e-Pickup
Still on the EV side but this time slightly different, General Motors unveiled its electric Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck. Reports say that this is a highly anticipated vehicle, in which the unveiling took place during a virtual keynote given by CEO Mary Barra. According to the company, “Silverado EV isn’t just a truck. It’s a category-defying, boundary-breaking game-changer that can be what you need and want it to be.”
The highly anticipated electric Silverado is no doubt one of the first models developed on GM’s new electric vehicle platform called Ultium. It starts with Ultium – the groundbreaking, all-new battery platform from General Motors that brings with it new power, a new force, new flexibility, and of course, a new range of possibilities. A central piece of the automobile giant’s $20 billion EV initiative.
The full-size pickup boasts of a range of 400 miles and promises to deliver up to 100 miles on a 10-minute charge while maintaining up to 10,000 pounds in trailering capacity with up to 1,300 pounds of payload (on the RST configuration.)
The electric Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck will be available in two configurations: an RST First Edition and a fleet-oriented WT model. GM has announced that reservation for the Silverado has started and can be done through the Chevrolet website.