There are plenty of reasons to get excited for 2019. The final season of Game of Thrones will air. A trippy new foldable cellphone is said to be coming from Samsung. A NEW FLAVOR OF GIRL SCOUT COOKIE IS DEBUTING. (Caramel Chocolate Chip, if you’re wondering.) Fortunately, the auto industry has some exciting introductions planned for the coming year as well. Here are five new vehicles for 2019 that’ll have you pouring some cheap bubbly and toasting the new year before summer’s even over.
2019 Hyundai Nexo
Slated to go on sale late this year is the 2019 Nexo, Hyundai’s second-gen attempt at popularizing hybrid fuel cell cars. The Nexo not only replaces the lease-only, hydrogen-variant Hyundai Tucson, it greatly improves upon the model. With a 95-kW fuel cell stack and 40-kW battery, the Nexo provides 161-hp and 291 lb-ft of torque, taking it from 0-60 in 9.2. seconds. While that’s not exactly impressive, it is more than three seconds faster than its predecessor. And with a range of 370 miles between refueling and a top speed of 111-mph, the 2019 Nexo isn’t anything to sneeze at for a technology that hasn’t quite reached its stride.
More than making hybrid performance interesting, the Nexo also makes it more attractive. With a sleek design, Hyundai’s new model looks more like a modern crossover than most alternative-fuel options. The automaker’s new cascading grille design, LED running lights, and 19” aero-style wheels help give the Nexo a healthy (and much-needed) dose of updated styling.
If you tuned in to the Winter Olympics this year, you may remember seeing the autonomous demo self-driving over 100 miles from Seoul to the games. While those won’t be available for sale (at least yet), the new Nexo is definitely an attempt by the automaker to introduce some fancy new driver-assist technology and get a leg up on the autonomous race. Equipped with all the usual hi-tech safety bells and whistles, the Nexo also offers an automatic parking feature. And select markets will get a remote-feature version where the car parks itself and returns when summoned. Color us intrigued.
Sadly, when the Hyundai Nexo lands on US soil, it’ll only be for sale in California. Seeing as they’re the only state actively investing in hydrogen fueling stations, it’s only fair they get to play with the new toys first. Lucky for you, none of the other five new vehicles for 2019 on this list have such limited availability.
2019 Hyundai Veloster
Along the theme of bold styling is the 2019 Hyundai Veloster, an oddly aggressive three door hatchback. The all-new, second generation model is already on sale. And with the base model starting at a competitive $18,500 and a turbo option at $25,400, fans of the sport compact scene can enjoy what the automaker calls a “unique expression of Hyundai’s audacious side.”
The new Veloster offers a 2.0 L inline-4 putting out 147-hp and 132 lb-ft of torque, as well as a more capable turbocharged 1.6 L inline-4 providing 201-hp and 195 lb-ft of torque. And if that’s not quite enough, Hyundai has slated their “high-performance” 275-hp version, the Veloster N, to arrive this Fall.
The base model boasts some new tech, including a 7″ touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, LED running lamps, and a six-speaker stereo. As you step up the trim levels, the goodies get better including a six-speed automatic transmission with paddle shifters, cushier interior, and snazzier gadgets. Equal parts fun and practical, all at an affordable price. Just the thing to keep you on track with your 2019 resolutions.
2019 Lincoln Nautilus
But maybe you don’t want practicality. Maybe, next year is devoted to exploring a little self-indulgence. Perhaps you want something that says “I use a $50 decanter on a $13 bottle of wine.” Then you’re in luck because Lincoln has just given their MKX a complete refresh with a new name, powertrain, and price.
The new Lincoln Nautilus, whose base model starts in the low-$40,000 range, sports a turbocharged 2.0 L four-cylinder EcoBoost putting out 245-hp. An eight-speed transmission, 18” premium painted alloy wheels, and 12” instrument cluster screen come standard. If you move up the totem pole, however, a 2.7 L twin-turbo V6 becomes an option, making 335-hp. The higher trims also boast LED foglamps, a better sound system, and panoramic sunroof. And if you really want to commit to your new philosophy, with something that says “I just put my 2 year old on a waiting list for private pre-K,” check out the Nautilus Black Label trim. With styling themes sporting names such as Gala, Chalet, and Thoroughbred, this model is perfect for people who take themselves—and their free time—very seriously.
Regardless of trim, the new model puts up a punchy engine in a luxurious package. The 2019 Lincoln Nautilus just became available at select dealerships, giving you plenty of time to get yours before the Napa wine harvest season begins.
2019 Cadillac XT4
And speaking of luxury, Cadillac is upping its game in the world of high-class crossovers as well. Launching this fall is the new Cadillac XT4, the less-powerful but more cost-efficient sibling of the XT5. Targeting millennials with good credit, the base XT4 starts under $35,000, which Kelly Blue Book says is a value in its class. And like the other five new vehicles for 2019 on this list, the higher trims will gift you with more tech, more safety, and more premium leather.
Performance wise, all trims of the new Cadillac XT4 are powered by a 237-hp 2.0 L turbo-four using a nine-speed automatic. And all levels have the option of front-wheel or all-wheel drive. It claims 25/30 mpg, which is an improvement over its big brother, the XT5. And while it has less cargo room than its sibling (22.5in vs 30in), passengers will enjoy more headroom and space to spread out. Ideal for the enterprising yuppie whose friends want to enjoy that 4G LTE connectivity in real comfort on the way to the company tailgate.
2019 Lexus UX
Rounding out the last of the exciting five new vehicles for 2019, is the 2019 Lexus UX. Like Cadillac, Lexus is elbowing in on the crossover game with its own entry-level model—a competitively-priced luxury subcompact. Expected to compete with the likes of the Mercedes GLA, Audi Q3, BMW X1, and new Volvo XC40, the new Lexus UX is for young buyers who want a different but upscale look.
Two trims are available: the UX 200, which is powered by a 2.0 L four-cylinder engine good for 168-hp and the UX 250h, a hybrid using a 2.0 L four-cylinder combined with two electric motors putting out 176-hp. Both tout an all-new chassis and suspension, bold styling, and a comfortable and tech-friendly interior. Clearly designed with young shoppers in mind, Lexus proudly says that the new UX “includes innovative connectivity that makes exploration even more seamless.” (Meaning it’s fully integrated to your iPhone, smartwatch, Spotify account, and the Amazon Alexa sitting in your kitchen.)
The automaker also promises an F-SPORT version of both to keep things interesting. The new Lexus UX is expected to arrive this December, just in time for you to grab one of those big red bows and surprise whoever in your life you love enough to give a car. Pricing isn’t out yet, but industry pros guestimate it’ll be somewhere in the $34,000 range.