From hi-tech electric cars to blistering V8 performance sedans and luxury SUVs, this year promises to be one to remember for motoring enthusiasts.
Prestige customers with an appetite for green motoring will be spoiled for choice in 2020 as carmakers move to electrify their fleet.
Teething trouble prevented Audi’s e-tron from going on sale on schedule in 2019, but it should reach our shores in the first half of 2020.
Pitched as a rival to the Jaguar I-Pace and new Mercedes-Benz EQC, the Audi e-tron is a five-seat electric SUV expected to cost about $150,000 on the road.
As with those cars, it blends a high-riding SUV body (in wagon or coupe-like Sportback form) with twin electric motors front and rear, plus all of the brand’s latest infotainment and safety technology.
Mini’s first electric car, the Cooper SE, blends a 135kW electric motor with a relatively small battery offering about 250 kilometres of range.
Rather than trying to build the fastest or farthest-running electric car, the brand focused on making the machine feel as “Mini” as possible with agile handling and manageable dimensions. Expect it to cost at least $50,000 on the road.
Once Volvo’s performance brand, Polestar is now an electric car marque.
The Polestar 2 due in the in the fourth quarter of 2020 brings the first in-car infotainment system powered by Google’s Android.
You don’t get a key (smartphones unlock the car) but you do get a vegan interior, pixel LED headlights and quietness that surpasses most luxury cars.
There’s also the small matter of 300kW power backed by all-wheel-drive, Ohlins suspension, Brembo brakes and a 78kWh battery which lends 500km of range.
Electric vehicle fans who want the ultimate performance sedan will find it hard to go past Porsche’s Taycan Turbo.
Capable of reaching 100km/h in 2.8 seconds, Porsche’s first electric car serves up 560kW of electric thrust in an eye-catching four-door body.
While it can’t match the long-legged range of big-battery Teslas, the Taycan promises to be the fastest electric car at charging points, receiving up to 100km of range in five minutes.
Porsche has not announced prices for the Taycan in Australia, but you can bet it won’t be cheap.
UK customers pay £138,826 ($260,000) for the Taycan Turbo S, £1306 less than the Porsche Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid that costs $467,200 plus on-roads in Australia.
Mercedes-Benz has already launched its electric EQC crossover in Australia, so the big news for the brand in 2020 surrounds a replacement for the A-Class based GLA baby SUV and the addition of a new GLB bringing seven-seat versatility in a compact package.
If you’re after something more traditional, Hyundai’s luxury arm Genesis will launch its family-sized GV80 SUV.
Want a high-performance car in 2020?
You could do a lot worse than the new Mercedes-AMG A45 hot hatch and its CLA 45 sedan-shaped cousin. The original A45 redefined what a hot hatch could be, and the new model promises to push the boundaries even further with 310kW of power and a 3.9 second dash to 100km/h.
BMW’s range-topping M8 Coupe arrives in the first quarter of 2020 with a $352,900 price tag.
Buyers get a walloping 460kW twin-turbo V8 capable of powering the big coupe to 100km/h in just 3.2 seconds, giving Porsche 911 customers pause for thought.
A new-generation 911 went on sale this year, and you can expect powerful 911 Turbo and track-ready 911 GT3 variants to follow in coming months. Connoisseurs might gravitate toward Porsche’s smaller and lighter Cayman GT4, a circuit-ready model which ditches the four-cylinder turbo motor of regular Cayman variants in favour of a classic flat six.
Or you could wait until 2021 and stride into a Holden showroom to take home the first Corvette officially sold in Australia, revelling in its 370kW grunt and Porsche-like mid-engine dynamics.
Ferrari’s new SF90 Stradale officially costs $846,888, but you’ll realistically need $1 million to account for on-road costs and desirable options such as super-light carbon fibre wheels. The hybrid beast has 736kW of power, can run in a green electric-only mode and promises to be the fastest-accelerating car on sale.