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A Look Into The Future

Get a glimpse at the vehicles that will influence what we drive in the 2020s…
 
By Casey Williams
 
As we look to the next decade, many of the cars that will influence what we’ll be driving are already on the road…or soon will be. From a sleek German luxury car to an affordable Chevy compact, automated French lounge, all-capable pickups and Mustang-inspired crossover, these are the wheels to our future.
 
Chevrolet Bolt
The future-tech Bolt heralds an era of affordable electric vehicles. Its lithium-ion batteries propel it 416 kilometres on a charge, run 0-100 km/h in 6.5 seconds, and gain 160 kilometres of range in 30 minutes. The Bolt’s airy interior comes with Wi-Fi, Bose audio, wireless device charging, heated seats and heated steering wheel. Safety gear includes automatic emergency braking, lane keep assist and high-definition cameras. Prices start at $45,000. Beyond today, GM is using the Bolt as a test bed for its autonomous future. A crossover based on the Bolt is expected to debut next year.
 
Ford Mach E
Ford expands the Mustang family with an all-electric crossover that can travel 425 kilometres per charge and dispatch 0-100 km/h in under four seconds. It can reach an 80 per cent charge in 45 minutes. All-wheel drive enhances handling. Mustang styling cues include the front fascia, kicked-up rear fenders, and wide rump with triple element tail lights. Wireless phone charging and navigation come standard. Check the tablet-style touchscreen and the tinted, panoramic glass roof. Smartphones become keys. Prices will start at $50,495 when sales begin (expected late 2020).
 
Rivian R1T/R1S
It travels 640 kilometres without gasoline and runs 0-100 km/h in three seconds – not only that, it also fords streams, tows 5,000 kilograms and hauls 800 kilograms of payload. And it grills dinner (really). It’s the all-electric Rivian pickup and SUV. A unique skateboard chassis contains batteries, height-adjustable air suspension, and electric motors to drive it. Luggage can be stored beneath the hood and inside a full-width tunnel, from where the optional grilling station deploys. Interiors flaunt leather and glassy screens. Deliveries should commence by Christmas 2020, with prices starting around $85,000.
 
Mercedes-Benz EQS
Glimpse the near-future with this Mercedes S-Class concept. Batteries go 700 kilometres fully charged, can reach an 80 per cent charge in 20 minutes, and hit 0-100 km/h in 4.5 seconds. Fluid bodywork is adorned with a glittering LED light panel up front, holographic head lights, and light belt across the rear. The serene interior delights with flush twin-screen infotainment while wood, rose-gold speaker grilles, inlaid air vents and faux leather add ambience. View the sky through a glass roof. Given hands-off autonomous driving, passengers will have time to enjoy their surroundings.
 
Renault EZ-Ultimo
Inspired by Parisian architecture, adorned with crisp lines and spatted fenders, this fully autonomous ride points towards 2030. Passengers enjoy a neo-retro salon that pays homage to classical French design and modern aesthetics with parquet American walnut floors, green velvet and dark marble. Gold lamps provide cozy lighting; Wi-Fi and wireless charging connect devices. Power comes from batteries beneath the floor that can be charged wirelessly. Four-wheel steering aids urban manoeuvrability while the active suspension lowers for entry/exit.
 

 
CASEY WILLIAMS is a contributing writer for Gaywheels.com. He contributes to the New York-based LGBT magazine Metrosourceand the Chicago Tribune. He and his husband live in Indianapolis, where Williams contributes videos and reviews to wfyi.org, the area’s PBS/NPR station.
 

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