Nissan, Hyundai, Fisker show off electric SUVs

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They started off as specialty vehicles, sports cars and luxury models.

But electric vehicles are now coming to the automotive segment nearest you: family-oriented SUVs.

That much is obvious at the 2021 Los Angeles Auto Show, which begins Wednesday with media conferences and continues Nov. 19-28 with public days.

Nissan, Hyundai, Subaru and multiple start-ups are among the automakers poised to feature or reveal electric SUVs during the show, signaling the budding technology’s bid to take on the most popular body style in the marketplace.

“In order to get American consumers to transition to electric vehicles, you have to make vehicles that fit their lifestyle,” said Stephanie Brinley, principal automotive analyst at research firm IHS Markit. “And that means utility vehicles.”

Some automakers have already taken steps in that direction.

Tesla’s Model Y, a small electric SUV, is its most popular model. Ford has gained traction with an electric Mustang crossover, the Mach-E. And General Motors has pivoted its Bolt electric car to a crossover body style.

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Hyundai debuted the SEVEN, an electric SUV concept vehicle, at the 2021 Los Angeles Auto Show. The vehicle has space for seven passengers and would get more than 300 miles of range on a single battery charge.

But the onslaught of electric SUVs at the LA Auto Show amounts to a critical mass:

► Hyundai is debuting the SEVEN, an electric SUV with space for, yes, seven passengers. Meanwhile, Hyundai’s sibling automaker Kia is debuting the EV9, also a seven-passenger electric SUV.

► Nissan is featuring the Ariya, an electric SUV first announced in 2020 that the automaker hopes will help it recapture the EV stage after its initial success with the electric Nissan Leaf.

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