I took a trip to the Baltimore Auto Show on opening night on New Years Day, 2015. I wanted to see what plug-in vehicles the manufacturers were showing on the floor. I didn’t have high expectations for this show which is smaller than the one in Washington, DC.
I was pleasantly surprised by the number of electrics and the interest they were generating from the crowd. My electric tour started off when I spotted a white Chevy Volt hiding along the wall in the GM section near where we entered. Perhaps it was not featured prominently because the new 2016 redesign will be unveiled in a few weeks in Detroit.
Next I spotted a black THINK City which is the car I drive, sitting proudly among the Ferraris in the Exotic Vehicles section of Eurostar Auto Gallery who still have a few more THINKs available.
The Kia Soul EV was featured along with a mock charging station for people to interact with. This was the first time I’ve seen the Soul EV and I was impressed with the interior room and the black and red paint scheme which is unique to the electric version along with the special aero wheels. It looks quite nice in person. Seeing this vehicle was the highlight of the show for me.
Ford Fusion Energi and C-Max Energi cars were on display in Ford’s eco-friendly fuel-efficient vehicle section. Ford also had a large display featuring three different charging stations in the area of the C-Max Energi. It included a Ford branded 120v portable charging cable, an AeroVironment Level 2 home charging station and a commercial GE Wattstation.
VW was featuring their new e-Golf which was getting lots of attention. It was touted with the slogan, All Golf. No Gas. The display featured a Bosch Level 2 EVSE which was plugged into the car.
BMW had an i3 in the center of their area. The car was surrounded with people waiting to sit inside it. I was hoping BMW would have an i8 on display but unfortunately they didn’t.
Mercedes had a black electric B-Class sitting unassumingly on the edge of their area without much fanfare. You would have to look close to even know it was electric.
To my surprise, Cadillac had an ELR featured on their floor with a beautiful matching black mock charging station. In general, it was good to see most of the manufacturers had their electric cars plugged in which helps create recognition among the public of electric vehicles.
Nissan will be offering test drives of their LEAF electric cars outside of the Convention Center during daylight hours. On Thursday night when I was there, Nissan didn’t have any electric cars on display inside.
Toyota had no plug-in cars displayed, not even the Plug In Prius. I asked a Toyota representative about their Fuel Cell Vehicle and he said they are offering it in California first and they are not planned for the rest of the country until 2018 or 2019 at the earliest.
Honda also didn’t have a single plug-in electric car there. I asked specifically about the Honda Accord Plug-In and the Honda representative didn’t even know about it.
The Baltimore Auto Show runs through Sunday, January 4, 2015 at the Baltimore Convention Center.