We've kicked off January with a list of what to watch out for in 2020 with our comprehensive guide to exactly what new cars are due to hit showrooms over the next twelve months.
But what about the things we don't know? The following might not be set in stone, but Autocar's writers have predicted what you can expect from the automotive industry in 2020.
Defender will be epic off road and good on it, too
It has got to be really, hasn’t it? Land Rover seems to have avoided any damaging backlash over the design of the car that was always going to be easier to get wrong than get right given the stakes (for what it’s worth, we’re firmly in the ‘they’ve got it right’ camp). But it would be nothing compared with what would come its way if the Defender wasn’t the roughest, toughest off-roader in the world, capable of ploughing forward even when the terrain becomes seemingly impassable.
So while much has been made of its design, less has been made of the tech. Or rather, the tech story has got lost in the debate on the Defender’s looks. Maybe that’s because Land Rover didn’t want to face down another debate on why the Defender has switched from a separate ladder frame chassis to a monocoque body.
That switch was an obvious one when stacking up the Defender’s business case, so the D7x platform underpinning the car is closely related to JLR’s other aluminium architecture. This should make the new Defender unrecognisable from the old one to drive on the road, which is essential in widening its appeal, and Land Rover says its suite of off-road hardware and software is the toughest and most advanced it has yet produced.
So strong is the new Defender, it allegedly broke some of equipment designed to test its durability.
EVs will spark a saloon revival
We’re not saying the SUV trend is over just yet, but we reckon you’ll see more and more saloons on the road as EVs begin to take hold. Lighter, more aerodynamic and perfectly suited to the smoothness of an EV powertrain, the saloon car could be on for a comeback. New Jaguar XJ, Tesla Model 3, BMW i4… The list goes on.