New Car Trends, Plus a Few Splashy Debuts, at the 2024 New York Auto Show 

Car shows are great for a personal look at what's new, fancy and award winning. At this year's New York Auto Show, Kia, Infiniti, Ford, Genesis and more have a lot to show you.

New York Auto Show
The Genesis NeoLum concept car at the New York Auto Show. Photo: Scotty Reiss
A Girls Guide To Cars | New Car Trends, Plus A Few Splashy Debuts, At The 2024 New York Auto Show  - Genesis Magma Line On Display At The 2024 New York Auto Show
The Genesis Magma line on display at the 2024 New York Auto Show. Photo: New York Auto Show

Here’s What To See At The Car Show This Year

We used to love car shows for the fun, fancy concept vehicles (which would never come to market), and for the chance to get into the practical, affordable off-shoots to decide what to buy next.

But these days, there are fewer concepts and more cars you can buy, from practical to drool-worthy. Just like us, carmakers have become more pragmatic and less frivolous. 

So when you see something new and impressive at a car show, pay attention; you’ll likely see it on the road and maybe even in your driveway. 

At this year’s New York Auto Sh,ow, there was a lot of news, new debut models, and more than a few blinker lights pointing to the future. Here’s what’s to keep an eye out for in the future. 

Related: What Drives Her… to Buy a Car. Or To Walk Away?

Kia Ev9 Won The World Car Of The Year At The 2024 New York Auto Show
Kia EV9 Won the World Car of the Year at the 2024 New York Auto Show. Photo: World Car Awards/C Squared Photography

The Best Cars Of the Year: World Car Awards Winners Announced 

The show kicked off with the reveal of the World Car Awards winners for 2024, and there were some surprises — and some sure bets. 

It was not surprising that Kia walked away with the World Car of the Year award for the Kia EV9; this electric 3-row SUV has won many awards for its innovative approach and for delivering just what people want and need in a full-size SUV. 

It was a surprise, however, that the Kia EV9 also won World Electric Car for the EV9, beating out the Volvo EX30 and BMW i5.

Neither BMW nor Volvo was ignored, however. BMW won for World Luxury Car for the 5 series, which includes the all-electric i5, and Volvo took the top prize for World Urban Car for the EX30. 

But there were surprises: Toyota Prius was recognized as the World Car Design of the Year for the redesign that smoothed out its rear and roof lines, creating an elegant, flowing look.

And the World Performance Car award went to Hyundai for the Ioniq 5 N. The all-electric Ioniq 5 added not only more power but a drive mode option that creates a distinctly gas-powered sports car feeling, complete with paddle shifters, engine sounds, and rev-matching. It’s pretty incredible and a lot of fun and proves that computers replicate the gas-fed machine in a way that will generate a lot of delight.  

Related: All the 2024 World Car Awards Finalists

A Girls Guide To Cars | New Car Trends, Plus A Few Splashy Debuts, At The 2024 New York Auto Show  - Genesis Neolun Concept
The Genesis NeoLun SUV concept is quite posh-looking. Photo: Scotty Reiss

Two New Lines, Shown in Concepts From Genesis

The only concept cars at this year’s show are from Genesis, but to call them a concept is a bit deceiving; Genesis usually builds their concept cars, eventually. 

For this year’s New York Auto Show, the brand rolled out 3 concepts under the “Magma” name. Each is painted bright magma-inspired orange and infused with more power and performance capabilities such as enhanced suspension, steering, and power. The three models include the G80 sedan called Genesis X, the GV60 all-electric (taking a cue from the Hyundai Ioniq 5 N, perhaps?), and the Berlinetta, a two-seat sports coupe. This one was built for video games but the designers liked it so much they decided to build a concept. Based on the reaction, we may have just seen the first sports coupe from Genesis. We hope so.

Then, Genesis rolled out the NeoLun SUV concept. A smooth-surfaced body without creases or protrusions, this may be the sleekest SUV ever. Think Rolls Royce or Maybach-level poshness, but modern and all Genesis. The concept had Eames-style seats, purple suede, and ambient lights. It featured coach doors that open outward from the center and a running board that pops out to serve as a step-up into the car. When it comes to market (and we’re assuming it will, based on past Genesis concepts), it’ll be slightly different, but expect it to be large, posh, and pricey. 

Oh, and the Magma GV80 Coupe that Genesis revealed at last year’s New York Auto Show? It’s here this year, too… as a GV80 Coupe (though not Magma) that is available for order. 

Related: Visiting New York City’s Genesis House 

A Girls Guide To Cars | New Car Trends, Plus A Few Splashy Debuts, At The 2024 New York Auto Show  - Ford Mustang Gt Sydney Sweeney
The Ford/Sydney Sweeney Mustang GT is a two-of-a-kind Mustang. Photo: Scotty Reiss

Ford Showed a New Super Car: The Mustang GTD

GTD stands for Grand Touring Daytona, and the newest GT from Ford is exclusive, with a V8 engine that produces 800 HP and a price tag of about $300,000. But is not just any GT: it’s the ultimate Mustang. It carries the classic Mustang silhouette, has a rear spoiler that functions like those on F1 cars, adjusting to direct airflow and downforce, and beefier tires. Production is limited, and prospective buyers will need to get in line and make a case for their purchase (so no flippers allowed). 

Ford also introduced a two-of-a-kind Mustang GT designed by actress and mechanic Sydney Sweeney. After partnering with Sweeney, who has restored her own Mustang and Bronco in projects in the past, the company asked her to custom design her own version. The company built two: One for Sweeney and one to give away. The winner, Brittley C, was introduced at the show and allowed to drive the car away, so it’s not on display, but it’s never far from our hearts, and it’s on our Instagram. 

Infiniti Brings Out the Newest Infiniti QX80 

We love this full-size, 3-row 7 or 8 passenger SUV for the sense of safety and security it exudes — exactly what you expect from a full-size SUV.  But for 2025, the QX80 gets even more luxe: The Autograph edition, with a price tag of $110,000+, has front and rear massaging seats, Klipsch premium sound with surround speakers in the front seat headrests, and screens to control just about everything, including an expansive flat multimedia screen, driver display, and a lower climate control screen. 

The exterior has been subtly redesigned with a bold new front face capped with a dash-pattern light bar. Daytime running lights span the front and are replicated across the rear light bar. Inside, center seats slide, lift, and tilt for third-row access, and there are comforts for everyone in all seats. With a starting price of $82,500, the QX80 also has a new V6 turbo engine that generates 450 HP and 516 lb-ft. of torque, offering more power and better fuel economy than the prior V8 engine. 

Chevrolet Blazer Pursuit at the Auto Show

The Blazer, which hit a few speed bumps along the road this winter, is back. The company fixed the issues and returned it to the market. At the auto show, Chevrolet displayed it alongside the Blazer EV Pursuit, their first EV designed for high-speed driving and marketed to law enforcement. Imagine how nice it will be for towns to be able to recharge their police cars overnight, to have that instant torque when an officer needs to get someplace quickly and be able to drive in near silence all day long.

Polestar’s Lineup Grows

This company, formerly Volvo’s performance arm, has evolved into Volvo’s performance-focused electric sibling. Designed in Sweden and mostly built in China, the company focused on two new models at the New York Show: Polestar 3, a classically styled SUV, and Polestar 4, a coupe-shaped SUV. 

The 3, with seating for 5 and a price tag starting at $73,400, will be built in South Carolina starting in 2025, and when it is, a purchase will qualify for federal tax incentives. Cool features include a LiDAR pod for advanced driver assistance capabilities (and eventually some self-driving features…?), a spoiler on the front hood for enhanced aerodynamics, up to 315 miles of driving range, and very good power: 517 HP. 

The Polestar 4 blends the SUV shape with that of a coupe; its rear roofline dips toward the rear bumper, creating a sportier look. Giving in to the idea that a rear window in a coupe is useless, the company eliminated it, adding a digital rearview mirror instead for full visibility. This model, priced from $54,900, has seating for 5, a 300-mile driving range, and up to 544 HP.

To entice customers, Polestar offers federal tax incentives on all leased models, so consider that $7,500 discount yours if you lease.

Farewell Forte, Hello Kia K4

A Girls Guide To Cars | New Car Trends, Plus A Few Splashy Debuts, At The 2024 New York Auto Show  - Kia K4
The 2025 Kia K5 at the 2024 New York Auto Show. Photo: Scotty Reiss

In taking the brand more toward the premium end of the car spectrum, Kia replaced the Forte with the now fancier K4. On the outside you’ll see distinct design details similar to its siblings such as the Sorento, Sportage and K5: heartbeat daytime running lights, a wide new grille, a light bar across the rear. 

Inside, it’ll feature wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, an advanced digital key “Hey Kia” voice assistance —the first Kia to get this! — and over-the-air updates that will allow owners to download custom graphics for their favorite NBA team. There will be two power options: Standard, with 147 HP, and the GT line Turbo, with 195 HP. Oh, and there’ll be a 5-door hatchback version (though I thought it looked more like a wagon), which will no doubt find fans. 

Nissan Kicks Up Design in the New Kicks

Much sportier than the first model, this compact SUV is the first to show off a new design language from Nissan: Vertical daytime running lights and a gloss black grille that spans the front of the SUV, and a similar approach with the rear tail lights. The look is sharp and modern. For Kicks, Nissan has a “sneaker-inspired design” with tread-like details on the lower bumpers and rocker panels. The 2025 model will sport 141 HP, the option of AWD, a contrast roof, a new flatscreen multimedia system, and sportier interior details.

New Power Options and an Off-Road Edition for Hyundai Tucson and Santa Fe 

Hyundai introduced new powertrains and an XRT edition for the Tucson and Santa Fe, which also have a slightly new look. The big news is that you can now have a plug-in hybrid for either, as well as a hybrid or gas version. 

And then, both will be available in the XRT off-road-capable trim, with side cladding to avoid damaging the exterior, side steps, and all-terrain tires. Santa Fe’s front face is now more distinct from the Tucson, which also had its look tweaked a bit. Inside, Hyundai updated the user interface, adding dials for the radio and a few more buttons for quick access to key functions. But those who love the wide-spanning multimedia screen won’t be disappointed; Hyundai left this intact.

The New York Auto Show runs through April 7th at New York’s Javits Center. Bring your comfy shoes and get ready for a ride or two, too; you can hop into the Hyundai Ioniq 5 N and experience what it’s like to go 0-60 MPH in 3 seconds. Or you can take a spin in one of the electric cars on the lower level. And be sure to stop by and see my friend Seth at Green Living Guy and ask all your electric car questions. He has answers! Happy car shopping!

Journalist, entrepreneur and mom. Expertise includes new cars, family cars, 3-row SUVs, child passenger car seats and automotive careers... More about Scotty Reiss