CES 2023 recently wrapped up its display of next-generation gizmos, gadgets, and people movers in Las Vegas. The 2023 edition saw a huge uptick in the number of EV products, including new EVs, charging devices, in-car entertainment systems, safety systems, and much more.
With that in mind, here are the best new EV products from CES 2023.
1. BMW i Vision Dee Bridges the Physical and Virtual World
One of the wildest reveals at CES 2023 was BMW’s i Vision Dee. According to BMW Group, Dee stands for “Digital Emotional Experience,” a preview of what’s to come for BMW’s Neue Klasse platform of EVs. The i Vision Dee is a futuristic mid-size sedan that sheds the automaker’s design language of yesteryear and brings a new level of customization to its cars.
BMW seeks to strengthen the relationship between people and their cars. How so? The i Vision Dee features exterior color-changing technology made possible by its 240 E Ink segments that enable a fully variable and individually configurable exterior.
In addition, BMW’s Mixed Reality Slider works with an advanced head-up display (HUD) that lets drivers decide how much digital content they want to see. Options range from analog displays to augmented-reality projection to complete entry into virtual worlds, which can be projected across the entire width of the windshield.
The i Vision Dee features “phygital” (physical and digital) icons that enable the car to offer a personalized welcome, talk to people, and express moods. While BMW is still far from realizing the i Vision Dee fully, the automaker will begin adding the full-windshield HUD to its Neue Klasse vehicles in 2025.
2. Mercedes Is to Build Its Own Charging Network
Mercedes-Benz announced at CES 2023 that it’s launching a global high-power charging network. Mercedes says it will begin building its network in North America in 2023. The automaker hopes to have at least 400 hubs with more than 2,500 high-power chargers in the region by 2027.
Mercedes is partnering with two EV leaders: MN8 energy, a solar energy and battery storage company, and ChargePoint, a charging network technology company. Depending on location, each charging hub could feature as many as 30 high-power chargers with up to 350 kW of charging power.
The German automaker noted its charging hubs will be strategically located near major population centers, close to amenities and roadways, to maximize convenience. Mercedes-Benz customers will get preferential access to pre-booking functions, among other benefits. Drivers of other brands with compatible technology will also have access to this new network.
The company’s goal is to have 10,000 chargers worldwide by the end of this decade and for its network to be fully sustainable via green electricity by 2039.
3. Sony and Honda Unveil a Brand New EV Concept
From the Sony camp at CES 2023, you may only be expecting PlayStation and entertainment-focused launches. However, the tech conglomerate announced its partnership with Honda to develop a new EV-mobility company, AFEELA. According to Sony-Honda, its mission is to “[m]ove people, through the pursuit of innovation with diverse inspirations.”
The company unveiled a prototype car for its new brand, “AFEELA,” in Las Vegas. The prototype sports a sedan-like design equipped with 45 cameras and sensors inside and outside the vehicle. In addition, its electronic control unit is capable of 800 trillion operations per second of maximum computing power to support augmented reality and self-driving capabilities.
The AFEELA is expected to begin deliveries in 2026, with preorders beginning in 2025. However, no pricing information is available at this time.
4. Ram Shows Off Its First Electric Pickup Truck
While Rivian, Ford, and HUMMER are among the best EV pickups on sale, Stellantis (Ram’s parent company) is finally stepping out with its Ram 1500 Revolution Battery-electric Vehicle (BEV) Concept. According to Stellantis, Ram will offer a portfolio of fully electrified solutions beginning in 2024.
The automaker says the concept’s ultra-modern design language represents the future of Ram trucks. The grand saloon-style doors open to a large interior featuring a powered mid-gate with jump seats and a rail attachment/floor track system that technically makes the concept a three-row pickup and a flexibly configurable one.
Tech-wise, the Ram 1500 Revolution BEV Concept features a ton of advanced technology. This includes, but isn’t limited to, 28 inches of screen space, a smart backup camera for 360-degree views, speakers, and receivers compatible with voice assistants, digital side-view mirrors, and an augmented reality head-up display.
5. Alexa Introduces a New Voice Command for EVgo Chargers
Amazon is seeking to level up its customer convenience once again in the form of voice-initiated EV charging and payment experiences. EVgo Inc. announced its partnership with Amazon at CES 2023. According to EVgo, its collaboration will allow drivers to ask Alexa to help them seamlessly find EV charging stations and pay for charging at EVgo stations.
The companies say they plan to roll out the in-vehicle functionality to Alexa-enabled vehicles later this year. This feature will also be available on other Amazon Alexa auto tech, like the Echo Auto.
6. Volkswagen Reveals Its New ID EV
The ID.4 crossover is VW’s only EV available in the US right now, but the German automaker unveiled its next ID vehicle at CES 2023: the VW ID.7 sedan. The ID.7 sports a smart camouflage paint scheme that, according to VW, uses technology and multi-layered paintwork to create a unique lighting effect across the vehicle.
VW highlights the innovations coming to the ID.7, including a new 15-inch screen format that features an augmented-reality head-up display, digitally controlled air vents, and illuminated touch sliders. In addition, the automaker says the ID.7 can preheat and precool as drivers approach with the key on hand. The ID.7’s total range is estimated to be over 400 miles.
7. ZF’s New Heat Belt Extends EV Ranges
Heated seats and steering wheels are old news, thanks to parts maker ZF. Showing off next-generation seat belts at CES, ZF says its heat belt can provide close-to-body warmth immediately after the driver starts driving. In turn, the heat belt is supposed to reduce the power needed to heat a vehicle, which ZF says may increase by up to 15 percent.
Heating conductors are woven into the heat belt itself, but the heat belt is designed not to interfere with normal seat belt operation and, therefore, not compromise occupant safety.
8. Lightyear Opens Solar-Powered Car Orders
We’ve talked a lot about EVs, but we haven’t talked about solar-powered EVs. At CES 2023, Dutch-based tech company Lightyear announced that the waitlist for its solar-powered car, Lightyear 2, is now open. The company says its Lightyear 2 makes electric driving accessible and convenient at a more affordable price point than other EVs.
With its solar panel-covered roof and optimized aerodynamics, the Lightyear 2 is estimated to offer nearly 500 miles in day-to-day driving range that will ultimately reduce electricity grid strain and be able to provide clean energy back into the grid. Production for the Lightyear 2 is expected to begin by the end of 2025 with a starting MSRP of below $50,000.
CES 2023 Proves the EV Market Is Heating Up
From new EVs and solar-powered EVs to new charging networks and heated seatbelts that increase range. The close of another CES proves the future of EVs is now.