Prem Lee Prasannam, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter The Nation Feb 16, 2023
Montreal auto show returns with an expanded range of electric-vehicle options
by Prem Lee Prasannam
The 2023 Montreal International Auto Show was the first public automobile event in Canada since the Covid pandemic began in 2020. It was no surprise to see car companies competing to make a bold statement in their elec
tric technology advancement and future vision after a long pause.
This year the venue was packed with North American and Asian car brands. At the entrance, Buick debuted the stunning Wildcat EV electric-car concept. Apart from its all-electric features, it boasts the inclusion of advanced artificial intelligence and biometric technology. You’ll have to wait to find out the selling price when the model hits the market. On the other hand, the gas car line-up showed the 2023 Encore small SUV with a starting price at $28,192 to the seven-seater Enclave Avenir midsize SUV starting at $65,247. Chevrolet continues its effort to transition from gas to electric in all segments, including cars, SUVs and trucks. The all-electric Equinox and Blazer SUVs are in the preproduction stage and are expected to reach the market in 2024. They will have a range of approximately 515 kilometres on full charge with an acceleration of 0-96 km/h in 4 seconds; this will surely excite many fast-lane and off-road drivers. Chevrolet’s electric vehicle propulsion warranty covers an eight-year period or 160,000 kms. In the car line-up, both the electric Bolt EV and Bolt EUV came without many changes from the previous year models with a price tag of around $40,000 and a driving range of approximately 400 kms on full charge.
In its truck lineup, the new Silverado EV is an all-electric truck, built on its Ultium battery platform, which focuses on electric propulsion, torque and zero emissions. It is expected to arrive at dealerships in fall 2023. It has a ran
ge of 640 kms on full charge with up to 754 HP and can hit from 0-96 km/h under 4.5 seconds. The regular gas version of Colorado, Silverado HD and Silverado 1500 were displayed with few changes from last year. Although the bottom level Colorado starts at $32,142, the fully loaded Silverado 1500 has a price tag of $87,092.
The new GMC Hummer EV is something that goes beyond our imagination in the electric truck and SUV category. This off-roader comes with a 1000 HP electric powertrain and can reach 0-100 km/h in 3.3 seconds. Interestingly, it has a rear-wheel steering system and can be driven sideways, what they call “Crabwalk mode” to move diagonally. Ruggedness is the signature design cue of Hummer vehicles; certainly, the look and specs of this vehicle have taken it to the next level of off-road driving imagination.
In the GMC SUV lineup, Terrain, Acadia and Yukon came in the small, midsize and full-size SUV category. The classic Acadia De
nali gives customers two options, either a 2.0L Turbo 4-cylinder or 3.6L V6; both are 9-speed and have a host of options for shoppers to add on. If you are into American gas trim cars, this is something to check out.
In the luxury section, the all-electric Cadillac Lyriq midsize SUV caught a lot of attention this year for its modern styling and comfortable interior packed with advanced electronics. It offers rear-wheel and dual-motor options with a range of approximately 500 kms. The 33-inch diagonal display panel and its LED taillights make it unique among other contenders.
The Korean car brands, Hyundai and Kia, brought excitement to visitors with their new concept cars and all-electric models. The futuristic design styling, improved product quality and their brilliant price positioning is well tailored to compete in the tough North American market.