Car News: 2024 Consumer Electronics Show


Key Automotive Announcements from CES 2024

CES, the Consumer Electronic Show, has become a key event for automotive news, especially with a technology focus. CES 2024 was no different with several concept and new vehicle reveals, and technological advancements that will be part of new cars in the coming years.

Kia at CES 2024
Auto companies like Kia use CES as a vehicle introduction show

This is a look, alphabetically, at some of what was announced at CES 2024, held at the Las Vegas Convention Center, January 9-12. CES is a trade-only show, so if you want to attend next year make your plans here.

BMW: AI, AR, Digitalized Mobility and Remote Controlled Valet Parking

BMW at CES 2024
BMW sees in-car gaming as a coming trend
  • BMW was all about the digital customer experience at this year’s CES. The Digital Premium package through the BMW Operating System 9 will include access to its ConnectedDrive store with third-party apps. New BMW owners will be offered a growing list of music, gaming and news accessed through Bluetooth-enabled wireless gaming controllers that are connected to the infotainment system.
  • Remote controlled valet parking allows drivers to leave their vehicle at a defined drop off point. It then automatically searches for a parking space, performs the necessary maneuvers to enter the space, and can return the vehicle to the pick-up point.

Timing: BMW says all these technologies will be become available over the course of 2024.

Honda: Saloon and Space-Hub Concepts

  • Debuted two Honda O Series concepts: Saloon and Space-Hub. The O Series, pronounced ‘zero,’ are all-electric vehicles launching in 2026. The first will be the flagship futuristic Saloon, a wagon-like model that sits on a dedicated EV platform and features a long, low and wide exterior resulting in a large, spacious interior.
  • Advanced technology such as steer-by-wire, motion control, posture control and a human-machine interface (HMI) that enables simple intuitive operations.
  • The Space-Hub was developed under the theme of “augmenting people’s daily lives” with a  spacious cabin using Honda’s “Thin, Light, and Wise” development approach. The new ‘H’ mark will be applied on future Honda EV models, including the Honda 0 Series.
Honda at CES 2024
Honda’s concepts are expected to reach production in a couple years

Timing: A model based on the Saloon will be introduced to the North American market in 2026, with other O Series models to follow.

Kia: Platform Beyond Vehicle (PBV) Concepts

Kia at CES 2024
Korean automotive nesting dolls?
  • Modular commercial electric vans to this point have been on the larger side, such those FedEx and Amazon are using from Rivian and BrightDrop. This left an untapped market for smaller, fit-for-purpose electric vans and trucks that will be not only used for last mile delivery, but longer range transportation of goods.
  • Kia introduced three very cool-looking and futuristic commercial vehicles to CES 2024, with some of them entering production as soon as 2025.
  • The Platform Beyond Vehicle idea is not new (Nissan tried it years ago with the Pulsar), but actually doing it is making a bold statement from Kia. The platforms can be mounted with a pickup or van body, and even a passenger design for a taxi. The largest will be PV7, midsize PV5 and the smallest, and I apologize, the cutest, PV1. The PV5 should be the first to be released.

Timing: PVB production is in South Korea with the North America on-sale date to be announced.

Mercedes-Benz at CES 2024
The tech inside the car gets extra attention at CES

Mercedes-Benz: Digital Tech, AI Virtual Assistant, New Dolby Audio System

  • The AI-powered MBUX (Mercedes-Benz User Experience) Virtual Assistant makes human-like interaction possible using generative AI and advanced 3D graphics, making interactions between the driver and vehicle more natural, intuitive and personalized.
  • Mercedes-Benz, Audible and Amazon Music will soon be able to use Dolby Atmos to immerse themselves in audio storytelling in addition to music. The basis for the collaboration is the integration of the immersive Dolby Atmos audio experience in the Burmester 4D and 3D Surround Sound System that Clean Fleet Report experienced in our reviews of the 2023 EQE 350 4matic and the 2022 EQS 580 4Matic. Audible and Amazon subscribers will have access to the entire catalogue of each respective streaming service for listening to authors, podcasts, or music in a fully immersive way.

Timing: Roll-out through 2024.

Mercedes-Benz at CES 2024
The all-electric CLA looks ready to drive

Mercedes-Benz: CLA Class Concept

  • The Concept CLA Class is the newest hypermiler EV, with a predicted single-charge range of more than 466 miles. A new in-house-developed electric drive unit delivers up to 93% efficiency from battery to wheels over long distances. The 800-volt architecture also enables high-power 300+ kW DC charging, which can deliver up to 248 miles of range in 15 minutes. There will be a total of four models: a four-door coupe, a shooting brake (station wagon) and two SUVs.

Timing: The CLA at CES was a concept car, but could come to the U.S. in 2026.

Nullen Five RS EV at CES 2024
Mullen will take your deposits now

Mullen Five RS EV

  • Mullen debuted the Five RS EV, the performance version of their FIVE flagship SUV. The RS touts 1,000+ hp with 0-60 mph under two seconds and a top speed of 200 mph. With dual motors, the all-wheel drive has 800-volt architecture and carbon ceramic Brembo brakes.

Timing: $500 refundable deposits are being taken with no delivery date announced.

Polestar and Google

  • All Polestar vehicles have Google Built-In, but now the technology will have enhanced features. New functions allow for planning trips on Google Maps for Android or Apple iOS and in-car browsing with Google Chrome.
Polestar at CES 2024
Google rides along with Polestar this year

Timing: In Polestar 2 models now, and Polestar 3 and 4 when they go on-sale in 2024.

Sony and Honda Mobility: Afeela EV Update

  • At CES 2023, Sony and Honda introduced the Affela prototype, a new electric sedan from the two companies completely new automotive brand of Sony Honda Mobility (SHM). SHM says “Afeela” represents “Feel,” which is at the center of the mobility experience.”
  • SHM released more information, such as that the 91 kWh battery will DC fast charge up to 150 kW, but no all-electric driving range was announced. The all-wheel drive Afeela prototype has twin 241 hp motors.
  • Expect the Sony side of the new company to bring the latest AI, ADAS (advanced driver assistance systems), AR, gaming, navigation and music entertainment.
Sony-Honda Mobility (SHM) Afeela at CES 2024
Sony-Honda Afeela still on the horizon

Timing: Orders will begin in 2025 and North American sales to begin in 2026. Pricing has not been announced.

VinFast: VF 3 and VF Wild Concepts

  • VinFast, the nascent Vietnamese car company, displayed the VF 3 sub-compact SUV and the VF Wild midsize pickup truck concepts.
  • The VF 3 will have a limited, but specific, buyer who wants a fun vehicle for urban driving, but can live with an all-electric driving range of 125 miles.
Vinfast VF 3 at CES 2024
Vinfast is looking for small success
  • The VF Wild (Clean Fleet Report loves the name!) will place the company in some serious competition with Ford, Rivian, Tesla and eventually Chevrolet, GMC and Ram for EV pick-up truck business. Hopefully, VinFast will have more success than when its first model, the VF 8 was released in May 2023.

Timing: No release dates for these teasers.

Volkswagen: Integrates ChatGPT

Volkswagen and ChatGPT at CES 2024
Your VW will soon talk back to you
  • Volkswagen joins the crowd announced integrating the artificial-intelligence-based chatbot ChatGPT into its voice assistant, IDA. Volkswagen says “Cerence Chat Pro is the foundation of the new function, which offers a uniquely intelligent, automotive-grade ChatGPT integration (that will offer) enriching conversations, clearing up questions, interacting in intuitive language, receiving vehicle-specific information and much more.” In addition, it will control the sound system and some of vehicle-specific tasks, all hands-free, including defrosting the windshield, turning on the lights, setting the cabin temperature and giving navigation directions.
  • Volkswagen strongly states that personal data is protected and ChatGPT does not have access to individual vehicle information.

Timing: Chat GPT will be a standard feature from the second quarter of 2024 in the ID.7, ID.5, ID.4, ID.3, the all-new Tiguan, Passat and Golf.


Zoox autonomous vehicle
It’s not a car–it’s a ride
  • Zoox says its on-demand autonomous ride-hailing vehicle is designed as a mobility service in urban environments. Whether it is called a Robot Taxi or Driverless Taxi, Zoox wants to stress “The Future Is For Riders…not drivers.”
  • Founded in 2014 and acquired by Amazon in 2020, the Zoox timeline is impressive. Seating for four occupants get airbags, seatbelts and have wireless phone charging. Mechanically it has 4-wheel steering for negotiating tight urban spaces, cameras, lidar and radar to guide it through a predefined area using geometric and semantic mapping.

Timing: Since June 16, 2023, the Zoox Robot Taxi has been operating on a one-mile loop around a neighborhood in Las Vegas, transporting up to four people at a time along a public route at speeds up to 35 mph.

CES never disappoints with new ideas and technology…and we didn’t even talk about the transparent TVs or foldable 137-inch and 150-inch ones from C Seed that cost $200,000+!

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Story by John Faulkner. Photos by the manufacturers.

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