Camry hybrid, Ioniq 5 N reviews; Prius and Cybertruck recalls; Highlander EV: The Week in Reverse


Which EV maker is grading how reliably fast-charge stations work with its vehicles?

Which automaker reportedly scrapped development of ICE range extenders for EVs? 

This is our look back at the Week In Reverse—right here at Green Car Reports—for the week ending April 19, 2024.

In a  first drive of the 2025 Toyota Camry hybrid, we found that the hybrid system blends into the background—just like the rest of the car, which has now appropriately gone all-hybrid. Available all-wheel drive, its ratings of up to 51 mpg combined, and a comfortable, spacious interior make it one of the most appealing Camry sedans yet. 

2025 Hyundai Ioniq 5 N

And on a first drive of the 2025 Hyundai Ioniq 5 N, Green Car Reports found what might be a motorsports game-changer—an EV that brings more emotion and joy to high-performance driving, with the capability to keep its cool out on the track. 

Rivian has announced that it’s rating EV fast-chargers for real-world reliability—and including those letter-grade ratings in its route planning and interface. It’s a situation that may put some pressure on networks to prioritize reliability, and in the meantime it may favor Tesla Supercharging and its generally superior reliability. 

Rivian charging grades for trip planning - Software Update 2024.11.01

Rivian charging grades for trip planning – Software Update 2024.11.01

The Kentucky-made three-row Toyota electric SUV that the automaker has been underscoring is on the way has taken on an intriguing twist with new info: that it’s reportedly a Toyota Highlander EV. According to the originating report, the Highlander will go all-electric, leaving room for a Grand Highlander offering various gasoline-fueled flavors. Plus, reportedly, Toyota’s “bZ” nomenclature might already be toast.

“Trapped” accelerator pedals are prompting a Tesla Cybertruck recall that, based on recall documents, may have been spurred by a production workaround on the assembly line. Tesla is recalling nearly 4,000 Cybertrucks for the issue but acted quickly, with a reengineered component already introduced.

2024 Toyota Prius

2024 Toyota Prius

The 2023-2025 Toyota Prius is being recalled for an issue that might cause waterlogged electronic rear door latches to suddenly short-circuit and open. In the meantime, Toyota is advising Prius owners to lock those doors while driving. 

It’s looking increasingly likely that the first U.S.-bound fully electric luxury convertible will come from Italy. The Maserati GranCabrio Folgore, revealed Monday, is due to arrive in America in the fourth quarter of the year, as a 2025 model, with a price above $200,000.

2025 Maserati GranCabrio Folgore

2025 Maserati GranCabrio Folgore

The 2024 Lucid Air Grand Touring is now being delivered, and once again it hits a 516-mile EPA range—the best of any EV. But with the addition of a head pump, improved automatic preconditioning, and up to 30% faster DC charging, it’s likely to cut the time spent at road-trip charging stops even more. 

GMC confirmed a starting price just under $100,000 and an EPA range of 440 miles for its top 2024 GMC Sierra EV Denali Edition 1 electric pickup. That includes four-wheel steering and CrabWalk capabilities, plus GM’s SuperCruise and the same very high-power charging rates as the GMC Hummer EV. 

2024 GMC Sierra EV Denali Edition 1

2024 GMC Sierra EV Denali Edition 1

Mercedes-Benz announced pricing and details for its 2025 eSprinter electric van lineup, which includes a smaller 81-kwh battery pack and shorter standard-roof version at a base price of $63,545 that’s more competitive versus fleet-oriented rivals. 

Mercedes has also, reportedly, scrapped its extended-range EV powertrains under development, at least partly because they were too expensive and seen as a technological patch. The plug-in series hybrids would have used dramatically downsized engines—a turbo-2 for the EQS—while halving the EV battery pack. 

According to data analyzed by Bloomberg New Energy Finance this past week, China now makes enough batteries for global EV production, In 2023, manufacturing capacity was already double what global battery-cell demand amounted to for EVs and energy storage combined, and if companies keep to announcements there may be even more of a gap between supply of cells and demand by EV plants. 

2024 Nissan Leaf

2024 Nissan Leaf

According to a recent deep dive into EV cost of ownership, half of new 2024 EVs cost less over five years versus ICE models—despite depreciation, which was far greater this past year.

While U.S. electricity demand has remained flat, or declined, in recent years, that’s not the case around EV battery plants—and new EV factories may be causing additional pollution, according to a recent report. Biden administration policy has greatly incentivized the growth of EV assembly plants and battery plants, and for labor reasons most of those have been sited in the American Southeast. That’s caused a spike in electricity demand, leading utilities to shift their power mix toward natural gas and away from renewables.

Gravity EV charging center in New York City

Gravity EV charging center in New York City

Despite a leveling-off of demand and more conservative sales growth of EVs themselves, U.S. fast-charger growth is accelerating in recent months. Just in the first quarter of the year the total number of fast-chargers is up nearly 8%, fueled by the Biden administration’s NEVI program—now amounting to one fast-charger for every 15 U.S. gas stations.

And if $50,000 EVs still lose $6,000, according to a recent analysis, when will EVs become profitable? Various financial incentives will help; so will range and efficiency; but the simple answer may rest on production volume.


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