Battle of the opposites at the american auto show: stromer against petrol

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Battle of the opposites at the American auto show: Stromer against petrol

Los Angeles is the scene of the last major car show of the year. In 2019 it will be a fair of contrasts.

The Audi e-tron wants to lean on the sporty coupe with a flatter rear section. Image: zvg

Worlds collide in Los Angeles: space rockets are built here, start-up companies are working on the technologies of the future in Silicon Valley, and contemporary film dreams are being created in Hollywood. A spirit of optimism, luxury, glitz and glamor. A car show here has to be a little different than elsewhere. Here, too, there are innovations from numerous manufacturers in two halls. However, at the Los Angeles Auto Show (until December 2nd) there is no problem with opposites – no matter how bizarre they may be.

Audi is clearly presenting the contrast and is placing the new top-of-the-range RS Q8 SUV with a 600-hp biturbo V8 engine right next to the second innovation being presented at the trade fair: the e-tron Sportback. With a flatter rear end, the purely electric SUV is reminiscent of a sporty coupe.

Of course, that costs cargo space, 615 to 1655 liters instead of 660 to 1725 liters, but it brings a little more range. Thanks to less air resistance, the Sportback, which is 13 millimeters flat, travels up to 446 kilometers according to WLTP measurements, 35 kilometers more than the regular e-tron. In addition, with the Sportback, Audi is introducing some urgently needed, detailed technical improvements for all e-tron versions in order to optimize the Stromer in terms of range and route planning. The Sportback is scheduled to hit the market in spring 2020, prices have not yet been determined.

In addition to Audi, the VW Group is also represented in Los Angeles with VW and Porsche. Above all, both brands want to focus on their commitment to e-mobility. At VW, this happens once again in the form of a study. The ID Space Vizzion is intended to show what a mid-range station wagon from Wolfsburg could look like in the future.

Battle of the opposites at the American auto show: Stromer against petrol-american

The futuristic vision of VW: the ID Space Vizzion. Image: zvg

The Stromer should come as a rear-wheel drive with 279 hp and as an all-wheel drive with 340 hp system performance and at best accelerate to 100 km/h in 5.4 seconds. VW wants to limit the top speed to 175 km. More important: VW predicts a range of 590 kilometers according to the WLTP measurement and 30 minutes charging time 0-80 percent. It is not yet clear when the production version will be on the road, but it is unlikely to be before the end of 2021.

Tesla in Los Angeles the great absentee

E-mobility at Porsche is more tangible. After the top models of the brand’s first electric car, the Taycan Turbo S and the Taycan Turbo, the Stuttgart-based company is showing the Taycan 4S in Los Angeles – the most sensible version of the sports electric car to date. The 4S will launch from early 2020 and will be available with two battery versions, 79 or 93 kWh.

The larger version offers a range of up to 463 kilometers (WLTP), which makes it the most enduring Taycan. Nevertheless, the driving performance remains sporty, the Porsche sprints to 100 km/h in 4 seconds. The price is also particularly interesting; the 4S starts at 135,700 francs, the larger battery costs 7,930 francs. For comparison: The Taycon Turbo costs at least 194,900 francs.

Tesla will not be present at the 2019 Los Angeles home show. It seems that Ford is taking advantage of this fact and is showing a real competitor for the upcoming Model Y in Los Angeles: the new Mustang Mach-E. The purely electric SUV borrows its name from the legendary muscle car and shows this with clear design references.

Battle of the opposites at the American auto show: Stromer against petrol-show

Mustang takes up the domestic American fight against Tesla with the Mach-E. Image: zvg

Technically, the Mach-E does not want to refer to the past, but herald the future for Ford. From November 2020, the American will also come to Switzerland; optionally with rear or all-wheel drive and 75 or 98 kWh battery capacity. It should offer a range of up to 600 kilometers. Prices start at 49,560 francs; later, a top model “GT” is to follow.

Otherwise, large SUVs and pick-up trucks from Chevrolet, Cadillac or GMC dominate the stands of the American manufacturers, not only dominating the exhibition halls, but also the streetscape. Mercedes also agreed with this tenor in Los Angeles.

Top V8 models with the star

The brand with the three-pointed star developed the large SUV GLS primarily for the US market, although it is also offered by us. Now Mercedes is showing the top model of the luxury SUV built in the USA in Los Angeles: the AMG GLS63. The seven-seater looks really colossal in the AMG version, which is underlined again by the gigantic 23-inch rims.

Battle of the opposites at the American auto show: Stromer against petrol-show

Mercedes developed GLS primarily for the US market. But it is also available from us. Image: zvg

It definitely suits the American taste. That should also apply to the drive: The 4-liter V8 has 612 hp and 850 Nm of torque. If necessary, thanks to the 48-volt on-board network, it can fall back on a 22 hp starter generator for additional thrust – or lower consumption.

The same drive is also used in the AMG GLE 63S, which Mercedes is also showing in LA. Here he should make do with 11.5 l/100 km. Prices and market launch are not yet known.

BMW has brought a little more reason to the trade fair in California: The 2 Series GranCoupe comes as a sporty, elegant alternative based on the new 1 Series. The competitor to the Mercedes CLA and Audi A3 sedan will be launched in 2020, with either front-wheel or all-wheel drive and up to 306 hp.

The four-door should be available from March – and cost at least 40,900 francs. The big brother M8 GranCoupe with up to 625 hp and two Minis are also on the same stand: one as the John Cooper Works GP with 306 hp and a sweeping spoiler, and one as the Mini Cooper SE with a pure electric drive and a range of up to 270 kilometers . Worlds collide here too.

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