Welcome to our roundup of the biggest breaking stories on Driving.ca from this past week. Get caught up and ready to get on with the weekend, because it’s hard keeping pace in a digital traffic jam.
Here’s what you missed while you were away.
Say goodbye to 15 discontinued vehicles, most of which are cars
Mercedes-Benz A-Class sedan Photo by Mercedes-Benz
The SUVs’ gain is the passenger cars’ loss. This much is clear looking at the list of vehicles killed off in Canada in the last year. The Chevrolet Spark, Acura ILX, Ford EcosSport, Ford GT, Hyundai Ioniq, Infiniti Q60, and the Mercedes-Benz A-Class; these are a handful of the 15 vehicles that will assuredly not be returning to the Canadian market. RIP (rust in peace).
But cars weren’t the only segment to take a hit this year. Believe it or not, one whole group was wiped away completely. With the Nissan NV200/Chevrolet City Express, Mercedes-Benz Metris, Ram ProMaster City, and Ford Transit Connect all taking their national farewell tours in 2022, the segment of small commercial vans in Canada is officially dead. Or empty. Either way, next year, you probably won’t be able to get one. Check out the full list of canceled vehicles at the link above.
Bradley Cooper to star in new Bullitt reboot. But what about the cars?
A movie scene of the iconic car chase scene from the 1968 Bullitt movie Photo by Guide Auto Web
Who would you cast in Steve McQueen’s iconic role if you were remaking the 1968 classic movie Bullitt? If you said Bradley Cooper, you’re thinking like Stephen Spielberg…and maybe you should me making movies. According to Deadline.com, that’s who will be playing the lead role in the new remake.
The film’s plot will not trace that of the oldie — this much we know — but it’s hard to imagine that Spielberg in all his directorial wisdom will not inject a good dose of automotive adventure into the story. The original follows McQueen’s San Fran cop Bullitt as he attempts to protect a mob informant. However, the scene that steals the show — indeed the scene most people know the movie for — is a 10-minute car chase involving a dark green Ford Mustang and a black Dodge Charger. Trotting out a Ford Mustang Mach-E might not make for an as-exciting chase scene, but the newer Mustang Dark Horse special could do the trick.
Spielberg and Cooper are allegedly working together to develop the film project along with McQueen’s son and granddaughter who are listed as executive producers.
All-electric 2023 Subaru Solterra arrives in Canada with single trim, multiple packages
2023 Subaru Solterra Photo by Subaru
Subaru’s first battery-electric vehicle will start at $54,295 in Canada and max out at $62,095. For the opening sum, customers can drive off with the standard 2023 Subaru Solterra with an X-Mode AWD system, S-Pedal drive, regenerative braking, 18-inch wheels, an eight-inch touchscreen, and heated front seats. Power in all models is sourced from a 72.8-kWh battery that feeds 215 horsepower to the AWD platform and can push for up to 360 km per charge.
The second and more expensive option builds on the same trim with a Luxury package ($58,395), adding goodies like 20-inch alloy wheels, park assist, two-tone paint as optional, a rear spoiler, roof rails, and a 360-degree cam setup. The top-level option — same trim — includes a Technology package ($62,095) with a smart rearview mirror, ventilated seats, gloss-black exterior accents, and a panoramic glass roof, among other features.
The 2023 Subaru Solterra is expected in dealerships in the next few months.
The first Fisker Ocean has finally (and actually) arrived
Henrik Fisker unveils the Fisker Ocean electric sports utility vehicle on November 17 Photo by Kyle Grillot /Bloomberg
The very first Fisker Ocean SUV has been completed. The company’s all-electric halo — Tesla Model Y fighter — offers up to 563 km of range and a zero-to-96-km/h sprint time of 3.6 seconds, plus a massive 17.1-inch centre touchscreen that flips lengthwise at the push of a button. Impressive, but it wasn’t easy getting here.
The company’s founder, Henrik Fisker, has had a tumultuous career as of late, filing for bankruptcy with his first attempt, Fisker Automotive, nearly a decade ago. But fast-forward to 2020 and Fisker parlayed himself into a SPAC sponsored by Apollo Global Management Inc., a private equity firm, and soon forged partnerships with contract builders and battery companies. And the second go-round went markedly better, though success is still far from guaranteed. Fisker plans to deliver 14 more EVs before the end of the year, and quickly ramp up production to hit the 42,400 mark in 2023.
“I’m not here to prove something to people that don’t believe in me,” Fisker said. “I’m here to deliver what I think hopefully will be a product that people really will love.”
EVs encroach on the 2023 North American Car of the Year Awards
2023 Cadillac Lyriq Photo by General Motors
Around 50 automotive journalists from Canada and the U.S. placed their votes in three categories for the 2023 North American Car, Truck, and Utility Vehicle of the Year (NACTOY) Awards. Vehicles must be all-new or substantially changed to qualify. Then, after the 47 nominated vehicles are cut down to a list of 26 semi-finalists, jurors take them out for a test-drive/evaluation to further judge things like value, performance, tech, innovation, and design.
In all three of the categories this year — car, SUV, and pickup — electric vehicles made a strong showing. In the SUV bucket, in fact, all three finalists were EVs for the first time ever: the Cadillac Lyriq, Genesis GV60, and Kia EV6. And in the pickup truck category, two of the three selected were also battery-powered. Check those out, as well as the full list of 2023 North American Car of the Year Award finalists here.
The sole winner from each category will be announced on January 11, 2023, at a special event in Detroit.