CES Part 1: Ram 1500 Revolution, VW ID. 7 | Autoblog Podcast #762

In this episode of the Autoblog Podcast, the first of 2023, Editor-in-Chief Greg Migliore is joined by News Editor Joel Stocksdale. This week they take a look at some of the reveals at this year's Consumer Electronics Show (CES) starting with the Ram 1500 Revolution, Volkswagen ID.7 and Chrysler Synthesis interior concept. Since this was recorded earlier in the week, some CES reveals hadn't been shown yet, so tune in next week for commentary on additional CES cars.

They also discuss cars driven recently. Stocksdale talks about his first drive experience with the 576-horsepower Kia EV6 GT. Migliore meanwhile spent time in the EV6's cousin, the Genesis GV60, as well as the Acura Integra and the long-term BMW 330e plug-in hybrid. And they cap off the podcast with the Spend My Money segment.

Send us your questions for the Mailbag and Spend My Money at: Podcast@Autoblog.com.

Video Transcript


GREG MIGLIORE: Welcome back to "The Autoblog Podcast." I'm Greg Migliori. Happy new year. We've got a great show for you this week. Got a little bit of news out of CES. And we'll get a little bit more into that next week when we have some of our reporters on the ground sort of signing in with their dispatches.

We also have been driving some pretty interesting things. I've been inside the Genesis GV6 and the Acura Integra. And Joel Stocksdale, our news editor, has been inside the EV6 GT, which I can't wait to hear about that. That was one of our test drives at the end of the year. And it sounds pretty bonkers. So we also will spend your money. With that, I will bring in Joel. How are you? Happy new year.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: Happy new year to you too. And I'm doing OK.

GREG MIGLIORE: Sounds good. Sounds good. So let's run through some news here first of all, some things we're seeing out of CES. Again, we'll have more full reports in the next week's show. But if you're listening to this on Friday, hopefully you're heading towards the weekend and, you know, maybe getting ready to do some skiing, some sledding, cracking a cold one on your patio. Whatever you might do, this will give you a sort of an appetizer.

One of the bigger things we've seen so far-- and I can't wait to see more pictures of this-- is the Ram EV. This is the long anticipated pickup truck, the Revolution as they're humbly calling this concept. They have-- you know, they've had a couple of interesting concepts, this being the second one in the last year or so following the Daytona SRT Banshee sort of two door Charger thing that we saw last-- at the end of last summer. This, of course, kind of bookends their lineup on the performance side of things. They're talking a big game here.

So I think that it'll be interesting to see where this lands as far as, like, production. I mean, right now, the super truck game, you've got the Silverado EV. You've got the Cybertruck on the way. You've got the Lightning EV, which is here. You could buy it. Maybe you can buy it if you can get your hands on it and get the right, you know, sort of number will come up. And the Lordstown Endurance is also here in very small numbers.

So especially when it comes to the domestics and Tesla-- I guess Lordstown's a domestic too as I think about it. They're in Lordstown, Ohio. A lot of this is, you know, in numbers. You know, where does your truck fall on the scale? And, you know, again, they're talking a big game.

And, you know, some of the red rigs we've seen so far-- be sure to come back and check out our images and videos and things like that. But they're saying they will be the leader in areas customers care the most about-- range, towing, payload, and charge time. I mean, shots on goal. That's, like, a bold statement. So I mean, you know, without having read too much into this, do you really think they're gonna, like, actually when this thing comes out go ahead and beat Ford and Chevy?



JOEL STOCKSDALE: --it's entirely possible. It's one of those things where, like, they're showing us the truck now, which is in roughly concept, guys. And so there's plenty of time for them to tweak the specs and things as needed and getting ready for the launch in I think it's-- yeah, in 2024 as a 2025 model. So I mean, yeah, they've got time to get prepped.

And like, they know the specs for F-150 Lightning and for the Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra electric pickup. So it's entirely possible. I mean, barring any unexpected releases from, like, Ford, I mean, they've got the numbers. They know-- so they know if they can get past them or not.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, it's a good point. And it's also I think, you know, you could be looking at, like, a range, you know-- pun intended-- as far as, like, maybe they beat them by, like, 20 miles or 15 horsepower or something. You know, Ram and Dodge and Stellantis, they're really big in the numbers game. You know? They were, like, one of the first sort of modern automakers to do the whole marketing by horsepower, you know, with, you know, the Charger and the Challenger.

So, you know, we'll see. I mean, in some ways, I think the question will be is how usable is this? How good is the overall truck? Because numbers don't necessarily mean anything.

Some other highlights. They've got some kind of cool things going on with the bed set up, the seats, and, of course, the tuning design, the tuning pitchfork as they like to call their sort of tuning fork-- excuse me-- of the grill. That looks pretty sweet. Inside the promising 28 inches of screens, that seems like a lot of touchscreen if you ask me. It's two different screens.

So I mean, yeah, it definitely sounds like something straight out of the Ram playbook, if you will. It rides on their STLA frame platform reading this from the release here. So it's gonna be body on frame. They're gonna be able to incorporate the battery pack in there. You know? Adjustable air suspension.

So you know, Stellantis, Ram, they've had-- they've-- I think they've been a leader in suspension technology for their trucks. So I think it'll be very interesting to see how, you know, a Ram EV rides too, you know? I think they've had the best ride and handling for going on 10, 12 years at this point.

So I'm excited, you know? It should be interesting. I was very excited to drive the Lightning and the Endurance briefly last fall. You know, I think-- I have no doubt this will be good.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: Yeah, it's interesting that they're including basically the Chevy midgate on this thing.


JOEL STOCKSDALE: So you can fold down the section between the bed and the cab and get extra room inside. And apparently, you can actually have objects pass through from the bed to the cabin and even into the frunk area. There's a pass through hole for, like, super long objects actually kind of like what we saw in the Bollinger pickup trucks back when they were still planning on offering consumer vehicles.

And it's also got kind of a nifty bed extender that looks a little bit more comprehensive than, like, the bed fence thing that, like, you swivel over on top of the tailgate to give you a little extra room. So it looks like there will be some creative cargo things. What do you think of the styling?

GREG MIGLIORE: I like it. I think it's very Ram-y, if you will. Like, it's sort of, like, similar to the truck but, you know, even more kind of, like, roided up, if you will. I like it. I tend to like how Rams look. I think they really go for it. They really, like, you know-- pick your cliche. They pull no punches.

And I like the way the fenders to be kind of ripped almost, you know, like some of the great Rams, you know, the Dodge Rams sort of like the late '70s, early '80s. If you look hard enough, maybe you even get, like, a Charger vibe in there. It's got that just kind of really, like, ripped Dodge/Ram demeanor. So I like it. What do you think?

JOEL STOCKSDALE: I think I'm still digesting it. I'm not-- [LAUGHS] I'm not completely sure how some-- like, from three quarter angles, I think I like it a fair bit. In profile, it looks really, really long. [LAUGHS]


JOEL STOCKSDALE: And I'm not entirely sure how much I like that. And I'll admit, I'm a little bit sad that there's not more of kind of the older style Ram kind of big rig front end. This is-- it doesn't have, like, the little droop down over the fenders like older Rams like-- well, from, like, the '90s to, like, previous generation Ram.

I wouldn't have minded seeing a little bit more of kind of the older school Ram look because I feel like that was pretty unique in the truck market. I could almost see this carrying a different brand on it. But overall, it's not bad. I think the-- the packaging I think is actually probably what I'm most interested in.


JOEL STOCKSDALE: How about that interior?

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, it's pretty wild. I think it looks like they're trying to serve up a lot of different, you know, different things you can do. They're good with the AR, the heads up display. I don't necessarily like those I think. You know, I've mixed reviews, mixed feelings personally about, like, the execution and things like the Mercedes.

But I mean, I don't know. It's CES. It's a concept. You know, they gotta kinda throw some of this stuff out there. You know, an intelligent storage app-- OK, cool. That sounds kind of wild. So they're doing all the, like, the techie plays I think that you need to do. Yeah, I mean, I think it looks-- I mean, it looks fine as far as inside and out for that better.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: Yeah, I like the-- I like the ambient lighting. And like I said, the packaging's really neat. I'm--

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, the Lighting--

JOEL STOCKSDALE: I am-- I am getting kind of tired though of the extra minimalist dash with a big tablet in the middle design scheme because it just seems like that's what everybody does when they wanna see high tech and up to date stuff. It's like, there's-- there are other ways to do an interior that are more-- I mean, heck, just look at Jeep, for instance, in the same-- in the same corporation. Like, they've got really high tech and interesting looking interiors that also look very distinct from the competition and don't just go with the we stuck a tablet on it look.

GREG MIGLIORE: You know, I think it works in some things like the-- like the Mustang Mach-E, for example. I think that is an example where it's clean. It's a little, like, jarring considering it's to me still a Mustang. Or at least it's pitching itself as a Mustang. And then you get in there, and it's almost all touchscreen. Works very well. So to me, it works.

You know, for other vehicles, I think, like, especially when you look at, like, Mercedes and BMWs, I think they still do a pretty good job, like, in their traditional, like, you know, four cylinder cars and things like that of having, like, a decent touchscreen but also having some, like, well done vents, some nice trim, some-- you know, giving the interior a little bit of character, a little bit of an upscale feel, if you will. And I think, you know, as a consumer, I still kind of want that. I want some sort of character.

So we'll see how that evolves. Interior design has changed so much in the last probably 15 years. You know, you look at cars from the late '80s right through into, like, the early 2010s, very similar, you know? Then it's like, the last 10 years, it's touchscreens, it's switches, it's different switches, it's haptics touch. So we'll see because technology is making all this stuff even more possible.

So let's stay with Stellantis. Chrysler Synthesis. This is Byron Heard, one of our associate editors, wrote that it looks like a water ski, a jet ski, sci-fi. I tend to agree. It's almost got that old school kind of boat vibe.

This is just basically a chance I think for Chrysler to show off some of their AI, have a presence at CES, remind people that Chrysler is still in business, I think get certain people who would attend CES to be mindful of that. So I mean, this is a concept. You know, frankly, it's not a particularly indelible one. Like, I think years from now, even if we do get in, like, a 300 or something, nobody's gonna remember that this is the concept that started it, you know? But looks cool, you know? It's about all I got on this thing.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: I mean, they brought a part of a car to CES. I'm kind of underwhelmed. It's like it's literally just a thing that they can put some seats in and some screens in to kind of show some of the technology coming to new Chrysler products.

And you know, they're nice. They're nice features that's over the air updates. And it's on artificial intelligence to kind of help with adjusting your settings and things and biometric scanning so that you can have your profile and stuff kind of like what you find in a Genesis GV60. But you know, they're features that are coming to basically all cars. And it's hard for me to be excited about this. And again, it's like it's pieces of maybe a future. There's not even a steering wheel in this--


JOEL STOCKSDALE: --interior demonstrator as they call it. Whereas in previous years, Chrysler has brought concepts for their airflow electric car. Kind of wondering what the-- what the status is on that car since we saw a fairly close to production concept I believe it was last year at CES. So you know, this is not something that I find particularly exciting. Yeah. And I'm guessing it's probably just so that Chrysler can have a little bit of additional presence when they don't have a huge amount to announce.

GREG MIGLIORE: So we are recording this before more of the show goes on. For those of you who've never been to CES, it's kind of weird in the fact that there's two press days where very little actually happens. And then car companies and every other electronics maker, TV, refrigerator maker in the world has these scattershot keynotes, just all sorts of things throughout the week until about Thursday night. And that's when Stellantis actually-- Thursday night Eastern time. I think it's 2:00 of the afternoon Vegas time. That's where they're gonna do the Peugeot that we don't know much about but sounds cool and, of course, the Ram Revolution.

So again, more to come next week. But I also tend to think that-- I did read somewhere trying to do some, like, prep for just CES for my own knowledge there might be another airflow concept-- [CLEARS THROAT] excuse me-- or another version of it. So we'll see if that comes to pass. But that's probably all we need to say about this.

ID.7. That's kinda cool. This is a Tesla fighter, if you will, as basically everything is. It's got some pretty crazy camo on it that seems to be as much of a story as it is the car in some ways. I think they did that because they wanted to try to stand out at CES too. [CLEARS THROAT] If they just roll out, like, a Volkswagen sedan, you know, who cares, in some ways?

Even if it's electric, you don't necessarily know that by looking at it. You get this out there, and it's gonna get some people to stop and look at it. It's interesting because it is a fairly like-- it's basically a sedan. It's, like, an Arteon successor. That to me is perhaps more interesting than the fact it's electric, that Volkswagen sees some life in this area.

ID, yet another ID branded vehicle. Yeah. Estimated 434 mile range. So says [INAUDIBLE], one of our contributors. That's based on European test cycles. But he still thinks it'll be about 300.

James Riswick, West Coast editor, senior editor for news-- or for reviews is on the ground. And he saw it. So we'll have more from him next week.

I don't know. This looks like a fun car to drive. I think on the list of EVs that I hope to drive pretty soon, I would put this up pretty high. It looks like, you know, in this way a legit Model S or Model Y fighter. So I think it looks good.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: Yeah. It's-- I'm not quite as enthusiastic (LAUGHING) about it I think as you are. I guess we'll see if it's a Tesla competitor. I think it's probably not gonna be quite that. I kinda feel like this is probably more of, like, a Passat replacement as opposed to RTM. I assume it'll be powered by the VW ID.4 Powertrain.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah. Yeah, yeah.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: I haven't driven-- I haven't driven one personally yet. So I don't know if you can speak to kind of driving dynamics for, like, the ID.4.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, I think the ID.4, if it-- if the ID.7 handles like the ID.4-- that's a bit of a mouthful-- I think it'll be pretty good. I think the Powertrain is pretty solid. You know, I had pretty good pickup when I drove it. It's been probably a year at this point as I think aloud.

But I drove it around the time I drove the Mach-E. And it was-- you know, it did-- like, VW was there as far as the technology. You know, its charge is fine. It has acceptable range. And I found the ID.4 to be a little more interesting than things even like the Nissan Ariya, if you will. So if this is sort of like more of a hatchback version, I think that could be a good thing, you know, more of a hatchback car version of the ID.4. I think that could definitely be a very good thing.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: Yeah, and I do think this is going to have quite good range. And that's mainly because it is more of a sedan shape than a lot of EVs right now. And that-- and that shape is simply more aerodynamic.

It's partly why the Hyundai Ioniq 6 gets better range than, like, the Ioniq 5. It's just it's a much more aerodynamic shape. And aerodynamics plays a big, big role in range, particularly at highway speeds. So it should have at the very least a substantial range improvement over ID.4 whether or not it reaches kind of, like, the current WLTP numbers.

And as for the camo, it is neat the electroluminescent stuff. And it hides the-- it hides the shape of the car surprisingly well. We have had spy shots in the past of fairly thinly disguised ones. So if you do want to get a better look at the car, search around for our spy shots and stuff on the website for the ID.7, which at the time was being referred to as I believe Aero B. It should give you a little bit better look at the car.

And this camo is in place in order to hide the car for its, like, full official reveal sometime later this year. This is just kind of the partial reveal. VW has done this a number of times. They did it with the ID.Buzz also. It had that neat striped rainbow camo and stuff.

GREG MIGLIORE: Yeah, I kinda like it. I mean, I think the camo is an interesting way to create a little more buzz about your product and, you know, sort of tell your story. I mean, Chevy-- this is somewhat different. They did, like, a dazzle, like, livery. It wasn't camo. But it was on, like, a production truck they did a few years ago. It was actually meant to, like, evoke, like, destroyers from World War I, like, the dazzle kind of, like, scheme. And it looked really good.

So it's kind of a good move for VW. So yeah, I mean, [CLEARS THROAT] another one that I am intrigued to drive. Let's put it that way.

So that's CES. It's going well. It's interesting. We're gonna have more news next week out of Peugeot, Sony, Mercedes, BMW, and probably even more than we can think of. So for now, let's talk about what we've been driving. You've been in the EV6 GT. This is probably your last trip of the year that you did at end of-- middle end of December.

This is a car that-- you know, I don't get this very much. Every now and then, I do. But you actually volunteered. When you saw it go on the board, you're like, hey, I wanna drive that one. Can I do that? It was, yeah, sure. You know? I definitely always try to put the right people in the right place. But hey, you know, EV6 GT, have at it, man.

And so I'm curious. This is the powerful one. It's 576 horsepower. What was it like? Was it that much better than the regular EV6?

JOEL STOCKSDALE: In a word, yes. It's quite a bit more exciting than a regular EV6 GT line like our-- like our long termer. You definitely feel the extra power. It feels much, much quicker than the GT line, which, I mean, is not slow with over 300 horsepower. But 536 is a big step up from that in the EV6 GT. And you definitely feel it.

And the suspension is substantially retained, much to my liking. It's way firmer. And it makes the car feel much more responsive. It feels lighter on its feet. It jumps into corners. It stays flat. It feels really fun on back country roads.

It's also very much kinda rear biased and a bit tail happy. Like, it's not hard to get the back end to step out. And it does have the-- they're calling it hidden drift mode because they're not actively publicizing how to activate drift mode I'm guessing probably to avoid potential lawsuits. But--


JOEL STOCKSDALE: --there is a drift mode there where you can shut off the traction control systems. And it'll let you-- it'll let you power slide it. And it'll let you spin out too. Like, it's not really handholding you too much. It'll let you properly drift it.

We got to-- we got to try it out in kind of a controlled environment. And they also had some pro drivers there that were taking us out on handling course over at Las Vegas Motor Speedway to demonstrate how it can drift. It's pretty impressive.

It's not all perfect. The steering is still kinda numb, which is a little bit disappointing, and could be a little bit more precise. Brakes are a little bit on the soft side. And if you do happen to take it on a track, that's when you start feeling the weight again. And there is still a little bit of body roll.

But on the whole, it's a super fun car. It still looks great. I wish it did look a little bit more different from the regular-- from, like, the other EV6 models. The differences between our long term GT line and the EV6 GT comes down to really subtle changes in, like, the grill and the rear diffuser. And that's kind of about it. It has a bright lime green brake calipers.


JOEL STOCKSDALE: And the inside-- one other big improvement. The seats are so good in it. They have lots of support, especially bolstering. They've got more thigh support. I wish you could get these seats in, like, the GT line. They're much more comfortable. And they hold you a lot better.

GREG MIGLIORE: Oh, interesting. OK. I'm curious. Did they sort of-- for me, the question is why do this? You know? I mean, I guess they're trying to take aim at, like, the Mach-E GT. And I mean, frankly, some of the more expensive and exotic EVs to come from, like, Mercedes, BMW, which is-- they've made a lot of appearances in this podcast so far.

I mean, my initial thought was this is awesome. But does Kia really need to do this? To me, this is also the spiritual successor to, like, the Stinger GT. You know? Like, maybe they didn't need to do that car, but they did. I mean, did they offer up some insight as, like, why the hell they're making this crazy horsepower, like, electric almost Hellcat?

JOEL STOCKSDALE: I mean, I don't really remember a whole lot behind it. But I mean, I assume it's mostly-- like any other Halo product, it's an image booster. I mean, it's just like the Kia Stinger. Even if it maybe didn't sell a huge amount, it was a big image boost for the company that, like, hey, we can make this cool, fun thing. And it makes you think about the rest of the lineup.

GREG MIGLIORE: I think it looks awesome. I think it's a good move. And I think one of the cool things I think about Kia right now is they're still at a stage where they can and should take these kinds of risks. You know? I think they're at a spot where it's OK to say, hey, we're gonna do a sports sedan, or we're gonna do this electric, you know, crossover sedan wagon type thing. And we're gonna give it all the extra horsepower because we can.

It gives them, like-- frankly, it gives them a little bit of technological leadership and bragging rights, which, you know, you're Kia. You're maybe not used to, like, [CLEARS THROAT] having the most prestigious brand reputation. That's not a diss. It's just the truth. I mean, even now I'll tell people the Telluride is perhaps among the best three rows you could buy.

And I mean, people anywhere I might travel of all different types of buying, you know, like, habits over the years, domestic, you know, imports. And they will still say, well, I like that, but that's a Kia. So I mean, I think they're still at a point in their, like, trajectory where you can and should take these sort of chances. So yeah. I mean, how is-- how is drifting?

JOEL STOCKSDALE: It's fun. I'm not very good at it.

GREG MIGLIORE: I'm not either.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: [LAUGHS] I would need more practice.

GREG MIGLIORE: Nobody really is.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: The guys though that were taking us for rides around the course-- not on our, like, amateur [LAUGHS] test corner on the actual track. Those guys were quite good. And they were-- they were doing some impressive stuff. They actually blew out a tire toward the end. But yeah, it was-- it was impressive. It's a very fun car.

It's also-- it's a pretty good deal. It starts just a little over $60,000. And that's less than, like, an equivalent Mach-E GT performance or a Tesla Model Y performance. And you get more power. And you also get the super fast 350 kilowatt charging that you get, like with, other Kia EV6s. So you're getting a lot of car for the money.

GREG MIGLIORE: I think that's a good place for Kia to be right now. You know? I mean, overdeliver, over-- you know, don't overpromise or overcharge. And it's an exciting time I think for the brand and especially for this car.

So I think that's a nice segue over to the Genesis GV60. This is what I've been driving for about a week. It just went back. It's a lot of fun. It's-- I've-- you know, I've driven it before, as have you. You know, it was-- the facial recognition was up for our tech of the year and the fingerprint scan, of course.

And I tend to land on if I were going to spend my own money the EV6. The portfolio that they offer whether it's the GT or some of the lesser spec models is the better value. And I also happen to like a little bit how the EV6 looks a little better. I just kinda like it a little bit more. Dimensionally, they're slightly different.

But to me, the selling point for the GV6 is, hey, maybe you don't necessarily wanna drive a Kia. You don't-- nobody really knows what a Genesis is. I was at a park this weekend. And somebody was like, wow, that's a fancy car. What's that? And I said a Genesis GV60. We're talking about it.

And then she says, wait, Genesis is the name of the car, the name of the company? And I'm like, yeah, yeah, OK. So they're owned by Hyundai and Kia. You always have to explain that. I think for some Genesis buyers, that could be a good thing. You know? It's sort of like this almost, like, white label luxury brand with no past or, you know, backstory good or bad. So in a way, I think that can help.

And even admittedly, when they first launched the Hyundai Genesis, the Hyundai badge wasn't very prominent. It was more like Genesis. And the cars kinda looked a lot like Mercedes and BMWs and Lexuses. So you know, Genesis can certainly stand on its own right now. They've won a ton of awards. It's I think-- you know, if you don't wanna buy one, you're probably sell yourself short based on their merits.

This is a long winded way of saying, you know, Genesis probably has less of a reputation but still a little more prestige than a Kia. So if you're shopping for similar, you know, motivated vehicles as far as electrical architecture, you could get the GV60. And it might be cooler at your, you know, shopping mall, preschool drop off, wherever you go than perhaps the Kia. I don't know. I happen to also like the EV6.

But like I said, this one offers you the bells and whistles starting with the orb. Nobody doesn't like the orb. You get in the car. And this reddish glowing ball flips over. Everybody loves it. It's a great party trick.

Facial recognition. That's another one. Fingerprint scan. You were a big proponent of that for our tech of the year. You get, like, the roofline in back, which is very, like, kinda dramatic.

I think it does a good job of basically being a car, a hatchback. It's just a few inches off the ground or a few millimeters more than, like, typical car would be so they could call it a crossover to sell it. It's a slight step up. It's like a Buick to a Chevy. You know?

So I liked it. You've driven it too I know. Would you if you had to flip a coin or make a reasoned decision, which one do you tend to like better?

JOEL STOCKSDALE: I do prefer the Kia. I mean, I do love the orb. And there are neat things about the Genesis. It has some neat technology. And the interior design is pretty neat.


JOEL STOCKSDALE: I've never been able to fall in love with the way it looks on the outside.


JOEL STOCKSDALE: I've definitely gotten more used to it. I don't-- when I first saw it, I was very confused I think. I don't know. It just-- it looked very strange to me. I've grown to get used to it, but I still don't love it.

And pricewise, I would have to go with the EV6 because the base Genesis GV60 starts right around $60,000. And that's getting you the dual motor little more than 300 horsepower Powertrain like what we have in our long term EV6. And for not really much more, I could have the EV6 GT with 576 horsepower--


JOEL STOCKSDALE: --and other high end performance things like the limited slip differential in the back and the sportier suspension tuning, all of which I would prefer to have. And to even approach that with the GV60, you'd have to get the performance model, which is 429 horsepower. So still not the same amount of power. And that one starts at over $68,000. So I would definitely be going with the EV6.

Now, one potential caveat with the EV6s, if you are particularly tall, you will not want the EV6 because the headroom is not great in that Kia. And then in that case, I would actually probably be looking at Hyundai Ioniq 5 or Ioniq 6 would be my preference because I prefer the way those look. And they're more affordable. And actually, to tell you the truth, I would at that point probably just wait for the Ioniq 5 N, which will probably be very similar in driving characteristics and performance to the EV6 GT.

GREG MIGLIORE: I tend to think-- and I do like the looks of the GV60 maybe a little bit more than you do. I tend to think this is the right car for certain buyers, like, maybe who-- like, you're cross shopping the Ioniq 5-- don't forget about that-- the EV6 and this. And you're like, well, I think I want a Genesis. I just think that's maybe where I ought to go. I like some of these things. And it's worth the extra money for me.

And also the interior I do think is nicer than the Hyundai and the Kia. Like, the one I tested had, like, beautiful blue leather. It was a nice balance of, like, a touchscreen plus, like, some design flourishes but also a fairly, like, Spartan layout.

I mean, for me, this would be almost like, you know, it's a premium brand. You know? I mean, it's the same reason people buy premium other brands. You pay more for something that functionally does the same thing. Genesis is an interesting spot in that many of its vehicles are mechanically similar to other sibling brands. And it's new. And it doesn't have much of a history.

Whereas, like, Toyota can sell Lexuses with the same suspensions and chassis as Toyotas. You know, other brands could get away with that. Whereas with this, the informed shopper might say, well, why am I paying a little bit more for this? On the other hand, maybe you just like it more. And I-- like, there are elements to this I did like more than the other two vehicles.

What's your favorite of the three? That's probably a loaded question. That's a tough one for me. I still think I'd go with the EV6, then probably Genesis GV60, and then Ioniq 5. But I really like the Ioniq 5 too. I like some of those, like, 1980s, like, wedge Tron vibe stuff that they sort of said they're trying to pull out of. What's your order of these three?

JOEL STOCKSDALE: The EV6 on the whole is my favorite. Even, like, in the lower trim levels, the suspension tuning and the steering on it I just prefer. I feel like it's just a little bit quicker and a little bit more composed as far as cornering is concerned while also still being very comfortable.

So that's kind of the decider because as far as stylingwise, it's really hard for me to pick between Ioniq 5 and EV6. I like them both very much. And they're both very different. So the EV6 gets a slight nod from me just because I prefer the way it drives. And the GT is kind of the clincher for now. When the Ioniq 5 N comes out, that may-- that may change things a little bit.

And then GV60, drive is also very good drivingwise. The one that we had the performance, I did like the suspension tuning on that. But on the whole, I don't feel like the GV60 adds that much more over the Hyundai and the Kia especially for the money. And I don't think it looks as good. So I prefer the Hyundai and the Kia. And the Kia is my favorite so far.

GREG MIGLIORE: OK. So I think we kind of agree in broad strokes on that. And they're all very good-- very good crossovers. So all right. Let's move along to a couple of brief ones here. I had a brief loan of the Acura Integra. That was a lot of fun. It was an A-Spec trim. I drove it.

Let's see. I also had the 330e, our long termer, the BMW, in my driveway. So I was driving the Bimmer, because they had all wheel drive and snow tires, like, during that sort of bomb cyclone that we had right around Christmas. And then things got a little better.

And the Acura was on all seasons. It's front wheel based, front wheel power. So I drove that. And it has a manual transmission, which in case you haven't done that in the snow, man, that's a lot of fun. You know, it's been a while since I've had the opportunity to do that. And man, that was fun.

And I do think the Integra really-- it does sort of deliver on the promise of a performance but accessible sport sedan/hatch from Acura. The transmission's great. The chassis is really dialed in. I really like the steering. The steering was more direct and responsive than the BMW, which, hello, whoa, wait a minute here. But they also have slightly different, like, missions.

The Integra is-- like, in A-Spec trim, this is the dialed in Integra. It'll be interesting to see if they do a Type S. You know, I think that could be cool. Whereas I was driving the plug in hybrid 3 series, not, like, an M or an M Sport or anything.

But yeah, man. And I think it looks pretty good too. I know some people have said, why would you pay for an Acura when you can get, like, a Honda with very similar running gear? You can do that. But I happen to like this a little bit more.

The interior is, eh, OK. Maybe that's a little bit of the weak spot. It seems like that's where, you know, the seats are good. Some of the materials, not so much.

But you know, maybe you reach a point in your life where you-- like, you wanna drive an Acura. Or you know, there are some people I know who are, like, Acura fans. We have some of them on staff who closely align with the brand and its performance heritage. Like, those specific touchstones versus, like, the broader Honda lineage.

So like, I get it. I mean, I was excited when they brought the Integra name back. And I think it was a good move to break bad news it on a car like this, you know? Sometimes you're like, oh, jeez. That's half baked. They really just slapped that on there.

You know, I have my questions about the Countach. Like, you know, is that really a Countach? It seemed like they used a random Lambo chassis and then kinda put the right headlights on it. Lambo, if you're listening, I'd love to test out that theory. If you could get me a Countach, that'd be awesome.

But I was excited to drive it. It was a lot of fun. I think it looked pretty good. It might have that kind of, like, Nardo gray exterior with the smoky wheels. So very close to what I would actually spec out myself. And I think it's-- I think it's solid. You know? I mean, I know you're a Civic owner. How do you feel about this?

JOEL STOCKSDALE: Well, former Civic owner.

GREG MIGLIORE: Former Civic owner.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: But yeah, I'm not surprised that it was fun because the A-Spec is effectively a Honda Civic SI. And having driven that myself, it's-- that's a fantastically fun little car. It's not the most powerful thing. But it handles amazing. The steering is fantastic. The shifter is good. It's, like-- it's an extremely engaging car. I especially like having the limited slip diff on it too. It really lets it pull through corners.

And I only had really kind of two major complaints about the SI. One, it's a little bit loud and not, like, enginewise. I mean, like, wind noise, tire noise, road noise, et cetera. And also that you can't get the SI as a hatchback. I assume at least with the quiet-- I am assuming that the Acura is probably much more quiet than the Civic. And the Integra's a hatchback. So that's kind of my two main complaints addressed.


JOEL STOCKSDALE: So I'm not surprised that the Integra is a lot of fun. It's-- and the thing is a lot of people have complained about it kind of being sort of a rehashed Honda Civic. But the thing is that's what an Integra has-- was and has been. The Integra has always been built off of Honda Civic bones. And not every Integra was a Type R. Most of them weren't. [LAUGHS] Most of them use pretty mundane Honda Powertrains.

So I think it's a perfectly suitable successor. And Acura has confirmed they will do a Type S, which will basically be a Honda Civic Type R but, like, a little fancier and a little more refined. Probably a fair bit more expensive than-- the current type R is not a cheap thing.

But yeah, I think the Integra is neat. I think it-- I think it's a worthy successor. And I think compared to, say, like, a BMW 2 Series sedan or, like, a Mercedes CLA, I think it could be a compelling option because it offers significantly more space for less money kind of comparing those two because, like, it's-- it is probably closer to, like, 3 Series size overall. But pricewise and also performancewise, it's closer to those smaller German cars, which are comparatively kind of cramped and also quite expensive. So I think-- I think it's a compelling little car.

GREG MIGLIORE: And you know, the argument about rehashing, like, Civic, I mean, that would be how we got an Integra the first time around. And that would be the only way they would do it now.

Like, if you're looking for, like-- you know, not you but, like, people in general trying to make that argument, to me, that's, like, a straw man's argument. Like, it never was that. And if you wanted it that way, they could-- there's no way they'd be able to, like, build a bespoke Acura Integra at this price point. And why would you? The Civic has a great chassis, like, great bones.

So yeah, I drove the TLX Type S a while ago. And I might-- it was interesting to me because I love all that extra horsepower you get. It really makes it come alive. But I also think the TLX and A-Spec trim is pretty dialed in. Like, you didn't-- you don't need the extra horsepower.

So I'm curious if I'll feel the same way about the Integra or not, you know? I tend to not necessarily associate Acuras with crazy horsepower. But you know, if they wanna do it, I'm happy to try it.

You know, we'll make a list here of cars I would like them to do and send like the Countach. Let's get that over here. We need to figure that one out. Let's get the Type S Integra. You know? Quite a-- plenty of cars coming up this year. Could be exciting. So yeah. Have you driven a long term 330 e? I'm not sure if its made its way to your driveway yet.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: I have. I didn't have it for very long though.

GREG MIGLIORE: OK. Yeah, I have had it for, well, now over a month. I think in a couple of weeks, I will likely be passing it on to somebody else. I've enjoyed it. I did an update talking about the ambiguity, the irritation I had about just the electric range. It's frustrating. It's 20 miles. And it's frankly not a very usable 20 miles in the cold.

My most recent entry that I think I'm gonna have up probably this Friday is more about just how good this specific car is in the winter. Again, I picked it over the Integra, what I had to drive my family around on Christmas Eve because it had snow tires and all wheel drive. And this thing was a champ. You know, I would go down, like, side streets that either weren't plowed or weren't plowed very, like, well. There was, like, packing snow.

You gotta really accelerate into the corner, like, yank the wheel to get this thing to do anything. Like, you gotta really be kind of a jerk to put this car wrong. So I was very impressed with that. Good chunk of that is the Nokian tires for sure. But I mean, it's-- they're on the car. It's the car. It gets credit for it.

So you know, I've definitely driven cars in this segment that are a little hairy this time of year because they're smaller, they're low to the ground. This thing was great. I gotta give it great props. I've already said I really like the chassis and the steering particularly. It's a little lighter than an Integra A-Spec. But I mean, what would you expect?

And it was nicely tuned for a balance of, like, still feeling sporty but a good amount of comfort. You know? Like, you could understand what you're doing and feel connected as you I wouldn't say was drifting. But you know what I mean. You were kinda sliding through the slush.

And you know, there's this part. It was kinda later on Christmas Eve. It was-- we'd already done some family stuff. It was kinda dark out. The snow is starting to come down. We're going over this kinda bridge. Like, the roads kinda, like, go over different other roads around here, if you will. And it's like it gets kind of, like, a tunnel effect going through the trees kind of over by, like, Woodward.

And that spot, you get a little nervous, you know? It's easy to put a car wrong, put a wheel wrong. And this thing plowed right through. So as far as just, like, my winter sled, A plus. No problems there.

So I mean, check out that story. Like I said, I think I'll have it up on Friday. It's a good winter sled. Yeah. I mean, I think it's definitely been an enjoyable car to our fleet. See if there's any other thoughts I have here as I go through my notes on this. That's about it really. The X drive, like I said, is great.

Oh, and I did take some longer runs with this visiting some family on the other side of town. It's actually a pretty good highway car just as far as comfort. And also you actually achieve more, like, the reported efficiency numbers. You tend to notice less than you do, like, in a good way. It feels like you're getting what you're paying for, the advertised efficiency rates, which aren't great, nothing special when you're out of, like, electricity.

But it's still a pretty good highway car. It doesn't feel like when I'm running errands, I'm just like, oh, jeez. I blew through another five miles of electric range. [GROANS] Feels like on the highway, you're getting your money's worth. Let me put it that way. So that's our long term.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: Yeah. And I definitely understand the frustration with not having a lot of range in a plug in hybrid, which the 330e isn't terrible. It's rated for-- the all wheel drive one is rated for 20 miles on electricity. But I've been in so many plug in hybrids with kind of similar range that almost every time, I'm like, I just wish I could go a little bit farther--


JOEL STOCKSDALE: --on electricity--


JOEL STOCKSDALE: --for a variety of reasons, in part just because, you know, it's nice not to use gas. But also, frequently these cars are extra quiet and refined when they're running in electric mode. And then when the engine kicks on, it's like you are yanked into-- yanked back to reality like, oh, right. I've got this gas engine. I forgot that it makes this noise and stuff. So frequently I am driving a plug in hybrid and kind of wishing it was even more electric than it was.

I've been-- in my experience, I've been finding that around 35 miles is kind of a sweet spot at least for my needs, for getting around Metro Detroit and back. That was kind of what I was getting in a Volvo-- let's see-- XC60 Polestar Engineered that had kind of that range and also the Mitsubishi Outlander plug in hybrid that I had recently. And even stuff like RAV4 Prime, that thing will get around 40 miles on electricity. But I-- yeah, frequently I've driven plug in hybrids. And I, like-- if I could get into that sort of, like, mid 30 to 40 mile range, that would be a really good sweet spot.

GREG MIGLIORE: That's-- I agree with you. Like, literally I've said that a bunch of times. Give me 30. That's all I need is 30. And I go back to the Chevy Volt is a great example.



JOEL STOCKSDALE: I will say, even with that in mind, I think I would still pick the 330e over, like, a regular 3 Series. I mean, if we're talking, like, the not full M3, but the M3-- it's M340 I think is the, like, high output straight six. But, like, comparing four cylinder BMW 3 Series, I would still pick the plug in hybrid even though I would wish it would still have a little bit more electric range. It does have that.

And because it's still a hybrid, it's still-- well, it still is that extra bit more quiet and refined even running in hybrid mode because it can delay. The engine can be on a little bit longer. It doesn't have to rev the engine as hard. Plus the plug in hybrid actually has more horsepower than the nonhybrid four cylinder. So it feels a little peppier too. So even though, like, I would like the range to be a little bit better, I would still pick the plug in hybrid 3 Series four cylinder over nonhybrid 3 Series four cylinder.

GREG MIGLIORE: OK, that's interesting. I-- I'm really close on that one. Going into this, like, loan, I thought, slam dunk. Give me the plug in. I just-- that's kind of the way I'm trending personally. I really enjoy plug ins. And then just the range disappointed me.

And I think you actually summed it up perfectly when you said, hey, it's not that I'm totally frustrated by the range, which I am. But when you-- once it becomes like you're just driving around a four cylinder BMW, it really changes the complexion of what you were hoping for when you get, you know, more of a hybrid assist or pure electric. Like, I really like that. And I want that to be more of the experience. So I agree with you on that one.

The other argument too is if you have a home charger, then you probably get more out of it. The argument-- and I've made this before-- is do you really need to buy a level two home charger if, you know, you're only gonna get 20 miles of range? So you know, maybe, maybe not.

I think, like I've said, you know, you kinda have to-- say maybe you have an EV6 or something in your driveway. Or you have-- actually I don't know if they're compatible. Say you have another electric car that's compatible with an L2 charger. Yeah, this could be your other car.

And I think that you get a lot of benefits out of it because otherwise, you gotta leave it plugged in using the charger that does come with the car, which you gotta give BMW credit there. And not everybody does that. We gotta leave it plugged in, like, overnight.

You know, not the worst thing in the world. But I don't know. I just-- I also tend to think I might not wanna do that. I like to-- for me, it's like the sweet spot is, like, fast charging too. Like, I like the infrastructure when you can go from 20% to 80% range in 20 minutes. So.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: Yeah, I mean, with the plug in hybrid, I don't think I would bother putting in a level two charger unless I knew I was gonna have a full EV, like, as a complement or in addition to or gonna replace the plug in with an electric sooner rather than later because it doesn't take super long to charge a battery that has, like, 20 to 30 miles of range even on a-- even on, like, 120 volt.

And I mean, even if you don't end up with a completely full charge by the time you're heading out for the day, well, you do have a gas engine. So it's not like you're gonna be stuck if you didn't quite get a full charge. So I mean, that's where I land on that.


JOEL STOCKSDALE: Yeah, I do-- I do wish I had a little bit more range. But overall, I still like it.

GREG MIGLIORE: All right. Should we spend some money?


GREG MIGLIORE: All right. Let's do it. This comes from John, who is a long time avid listener. Thank you for listening. We appreciate that. So here we go.

I'm looking to buy a fun car that may serve as my last gasoline powered car with an eye on long term investment. I'm thinking the 718 Spyder. Maybe a great last hurrah for thrilling-- for a thrilling gas powered sports car that would hold up very well over, say, the next 10 to 20 years as electrics take over. What would be your thoughts on this idea? Signed, John.

So it's kinda yes or no. But also, we could offer up some other alternatives or things you might wanna get as, you know, ice cars start to ride off into the sunset. I mean, my initial answer is pretty simply yes. I think so. I mean, if you're looking for something that you're gonna continue to enjoy and be rewarding to drive, I don't think you're gonna go wrong.

I've driven the 718 Boxster and Cayman, the last couple generations of them. Even before they were actually called, they brought back the 718 moniker. I think they're great. I really think they're incredible. I drove one in Malaga I wanna say. And it was no Mallorca. It was amazing press trip. I drove it out of track.

So yeah, I mean, again, it was, like, a predecessor of this. But as far as just, like, the mid-engine layout, the feel you're gonna get from driving that car-- you know, you talk about appropriate power like what Acura would offer you. I think nobody does appropriate power better than Porsche.

You know, they will offer you something that will rip your head off in, like, GTS form or something. But you know, as far as just an appropriately powered, balanced enthusiast machine, I don't think you can find anything better. So I would confirm your instincts having driven some of the car's predecessors over the usual.

JOEL STOCKSDALE: I mean, yeah. I would say yes also. It's hard to top a 718 for just outright driving fun for, like-- I mean, if you can afford it, like, that's-- it's one of the best cars you can get. That's-- it's small. So it's easy to whip around whether you're in town or at an autocross around the track or something. Like, it feels just so much smaller and lighter than even, like, a 911.

I may be in the minority. But I think if I had the choice between a 911 and a 718, I would even go with the 718 because I like-- I like smaller, more nimble vehicles. 911 is obviously a fantastic sports car. But it's gotten kinda big.


JOEL STOCKSDALE: The 718 is-- I mean, it's like if Porsche were gonna build a Miata, that's what-- that's what the 718 is.


JOEL STOCKSDALE: And as a Miata fan, I think that's partly why I really like the 718. And probably the hardest decision depending on what your budget is-- John didn't give us a price range. Probably the hardest decision will be which version to get and in part whether to get the turbo four cylinder or to get the naturally aspirated straight 6 because most of them are the turbo four. But the GTS is available with the naturally aspirated six cylinder.

I don't think you can go wrong with either of them. I personally would maybe go with one of the turbo four ones because I don't mind that it sounds a little bit like a Subaru. [LAUGHS] And quite frankly, there have been a lot of Porsches historically that have had flat fours that sound a little bit Subaru or Volkswagen-ish because that's where they started, even the Porsche 914, which in a lot of ways was kind of the spiritual predecessor to the Boxster and 718.

So I don't mind the four cylinder. And I like the turbo torque around town. And I like the fact that you can easily upgrade a turbo engine. So you can make even more power if you decide you want to.

That being said, I also totally understand wanting to go with the GTS six cylinder because that's six cylinder sounds really awesome. And it revs really high. And it's fun to wring out.

My one complaint with that is that it's geared super tall. So you are doing extra legal speeds if you're trying to wring it out [LAUGHS] pretty easily because it's geared tall, and it revs high. So you can-- you can get to high speeds in just, like, second gear. So that's totally a personal choice on your hand. But yeah, the 718 is a great way to go.

The only other thing I would maybe suggest is because it's similar-ish in price, C8 Corvette, which I also absolutely adore and is another just fantastic, like, gas powered and gas powered car. It's got that great rumbly pushrod V8.

But it also feels like a supercar, just the driving position and the feel of it. And it's also one that's super easy to live with on a daily basis because it's comfortable and is able to relax. But it'll also drive super hard if you want it to.


JOEL STOCKSDALE: So-- and, like, genuinely, if I had that kinda money, I would be considering, like, 718 and, like, C8. Those would be kind of my-- kind of the cars that I would be looking at in that kinda price range. So you know, depending on which you prefer, either is a fantastic choice. And you'll be super happy with it.

As far as investments, [LAUGHS] I don't know. I-- frankly, buying a car as an investment in general I would say is a bad idea because with very few exceptions, cars depreciate. That's what-- it's just what they do. And it's really, really hard to predict which ones will be super valuable in the future.

So I would say don't worry about whether it's an investment or not. Buy what makes you happy. And just hold onto it and enjoy it because that's what cars are for.

GREG MIGLIORE: That is the best way to put it. And we could leave it there. That's all the time we have for this week. Thanks for writing, John.

Thanks for listening, everybody. If you enjoy the show, that's five stars on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, wherever you get the show. Send us your Spend My Moneys. Are you looking to pick up a 718? We'd love to offer our take on that and spend your money. That's podcast@autoblog.com. Be safe out there. And we'll see you next week.