The transition to electric vehicles is happening before our eyes. Even for luxury brands – which, it seemed, should hold on to their long-term traditions more than others. Or not? In pursuit of a new client – are new methods of surprise and attraction acceptable? After all, when selling electric cars for $100-200-300 thousand (or even more), you need to offer special “zest” for a demanding buyer. What will luxury brands be able to offer in the near future? Let me take a look at a few examples.
Rolls-Royce and Bentley: starting with the “coupe” for the originals
Of course, when talking about “luxury” brands in the automotive world, Rolls-Royce should be among the first to be mentioned. The British company is already working on the creation of its future electric car, which will be called the Specter. The company is British – but the technology is German: it is expected to use four electric motors at once, which will provide unprecedented dynamics and controllability. And all these are not beautiful words: the prototype of the future electric coupe is now being tested, the production version is expected in the fourth quarter of 2023. Then other details of the project will become known.
In this case, Bentley is definitely worth mentioning: in the past – relatives, now – competitors. But Bentley does not yet have an almost finished electric car product. But it has clear plans for its electric mobility future: investments in production of 2.5 billion pounds, the use of the PPE platform, a smooth transition to electric vehicles in 2025-2026. and offering only electric vehicles from 2030.
The Rolls-Royce 103EX concept car is very original and out of the box, but the immediate reality of Rolls-Royce has more traditional forms: the Rolls-Royce Specter electric coupe is already being tested and is preparing to debut. Here we note the Bentley Mulliner Batur – this is a coupe with a classic gasoline engine; but it is already known that the future electric vehicles of the company will be made in approximately this design style.
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Cadillac and Lincoln: luxury electric sedans (well, almost)
Cadillac is now on the rise: a lot of models, bold design, attracting new customers. Against the backdrop of a wave of success, the Americans quite rightly want to move on – and offer customers a more exclusive product, the prototype of which is the new Cadillac Celestiq: a huge 5-door electric car with a luxurious interior and manual assembly. Also, the features of the Cadillac Celestiq electric car include the Ultium platform (voltage 800 volts, large battery, fully controlled chassis) and the new generation Ultra Cruise autonomous driving system. And also – a very high positioning: a serial electric car Cadillac Celestiq will cost about $ 250-300 thousand and will take an intermediate position between traditional luxury sedans for a conditional $ 100 thousand and exclusive models like Rolls-Royce or Bentley. Moreover, all this should happen very soon, already in 2023 – that is when the start of sales of the Cadillac Celestiq in the USA is expected.
Against the background of the above example, the Lincoln Model L100 concept car looks exactly like a concept: a free flight of thoughts on the topic of design and interior. And also – on the topic of driving. In fact, all control is assembled on a single joystick in the form of a scale model installed in the center of the touch panel. You just need to roughly set the direction of movement – and then the autonomous driving system will be responsible for everything. But there are two more points to note: first, the design of the Lincoln Model L100 concept fits into the current Lincoln line; secondly, in the form of this concept, we got an electric car. In a word, we will not rule out that Lincoln is also “probing” the segment of luxury and expensive electric vehicles.
Both “Americans” are large passenger electric vehicles that emphasize design and autonomous driving. The Cadillac Celestiq electric car will start selling soon, the Lincoln Model L100 concept car is just a “flight of thoughts” on the topic of design and control methods.
Dodge, DS Automobiles, Alfa Romeo: STLA Large future
Let’s continue with American brands, namely Dodge. Recently, the company seems to have opened a new era in its future history: farewell versions of already legendary models, a compact crossover for mass sales, the Dodge Daytona SRT concept car in the form of a reserve for an electric future.
So – in the case of Dodge, the story of electric vehicles is especially interesting: the company is known for dynamic coupes and sedans, powerful engines, loud exhaust. But how to achieve this in the sterile world of electric vehicles? An attempt to answer this question was the Dodge Daytona SRT concept car: an imitation of the exhaust sound of the Fratzonic Chambered Exhaust (126 dB volume) and eRupt gear shifts, an unusual R-Wing front wing and a classic body design. And also – potentially all-wheel drive and a lot of power thanks to the STLA Large platform. The first electric cars on this platform should appear in 2025.
The Dodge Daytona SRT concept car, the DS Aero Sport Lounge-inspired large crossover, the promising Alfa Romeo and Maserati electric cars – all this will soon become a reality thanks to the STLA Large platform: power up to 330 kW, range up to 800 km, electric vehicles with a length of about 4.7 -5.3 meters. In general, the history of STLA is the history of several special platforms that will become the basis for a huge number of electric cars from Stellantis: passenger cars and pickup trucks, compact and large, with front / rear / all-wheel drive.
Mercedes EQ: more models – with even more range
The Mercedes-Benz brand is placing particular emphasis on the development of its EQ-line of electric vehicles: many production models have already been released, and the following novelties are being prepared. One of the most anticipated is the Mercedes EQG electric SUV. Firstly, this is an electric embodiment of the legendary Mercedes G-class, and the electric drive promises to improve both dynamics and cross-country ability at the same time.
And secondly, the manufacturer promises for the Mercedes EQG the use of new batteries, the efficiency of which will be 20-40% higher (in terms of accumulated energy per battery size / weight) than current batteries. If we remember that for the serial flagship electric car Mercedes EQS, 770 km have already been announced, and the experimental Mercedes EQXX model travels more than 1000 km on a single charge, then the promised improvement in the battery promises us a noticeable increase in the range for future electric vehicles.
Electric vehicles of the Mercedes EQ line are represented by different models, AMG versions are appearing, an electric vein is planned. We are especially looking forward to the Mercedes EQG electric car by 2025, which obviously will not be cheap – but it can also be clearly stated now: there will be customers!
Lucid Air Sapphire: a custom alternative to everything
The new electric car Lucid Air Sapphire has recently debuted, bringing with it several titles at once. Firstly, the most technologically advanced and sporty version of Lucid Air: three electric motors, special suspension settings and even cooling systems, sports seats in the cabin. Secondly, the most powerful and dynamic production sedan in the world: the total power reaches 1200 hp, acceleration from 0 to 60 mph takes less than two seconds. Thirdly, we have before us the most expensive version of the Lucid Air electric car – for the Sapphire version they ask from $ 250 thousand.
The Lucid Air electric car and the great original itself with cutting-edge technology, and even more so by Sapphire! It turns out the option “exclusive in the square” for those who want to distinguish themselves as much as possible and, at the same time, get the most dynamic electric car.
Bottom line: how will luxury brands be attracted to the era of electric vehicles?
As you can see, everyone is trying in their own way: someone “plays” in the external design, the other pays attention to interior trim. But it should be noted that they all focus on new technologies: modular platforms, high-voltage networks, increasing the size and efficiency of batteries, autonomous control. This is important – because technology usually “falls” down in class and price over time. And this means that the groundwork seen today and the vector of development of expensive electric vehicles tomorrow will become generally accepted for models of the middle class and price segment. Therefore, we boldly dream of an interesting future!