When the doors open at the Los Angeles Convention Center on November 19, it’s bound to look remarkably different than in years past. And in no small part will electrification be a factor as the LA Auto Show introduces the first-ever Zero Emission Vehicle Awards, or simply, The ZEVAS. These awards are intended to showcase the best in zero-emission vehicles that are currently available or pre-orders are open.
The ZEVAS winners will be announced at the media and industry days during AutoMobility LA before the show, on November 17-18.
Consumer interest has carved out the award niche at the LA Auto Show. According to the June 2021 LA Auto Show Consumer Attendee Survey, interest in ZEVs has grown by 79% over the past 15 months. That explosive growth arrives on the backs of momentous announcements and product reveals from the Ford F-150 Lightning, GM’s three EV truck launches, the anticipated Rivian R1T release, Fisker Ocean’s upcoming production that’s planned for 2022, and dozens of other commitments and model reveals in the US. Of course, California is home to Tesla’s main manufacturing campus as well.
Lisa Kaz is the CEO and owner of the LA Auto Show. She says, “Electrification is the biggest transformation the auto industry has experienced in 100 years. With accelerating consumer interest in electric vehicles, there is no better place for the new car and truck buyer to learn about, experience, and compare the latest and greatest electric vehicles and gas-powered models all in one convenient place.”
Los Angeles is the perfect place to award efficiency
The LA Auto Show is as fitting a venue as there could be for The ZEVAS. California is the state that first introduces the most stringent environmental standards on automobiles with the California Air Resources Board (CARB), and they continue to have the toughest emissions standards in the nation. Many legacy dealers will recall California models receiving catalytic converters first.
In addition to Tesla, the state is home to EV carmakers and support networks at a higher density than anywhere else. Lucid Motors calls Newark home for their luxury EV development and budding EV maker Byton has a research and development center in Santa Clara. NIO also has offices in San Jose. ChargePoint’s EV charging network is headquartered in Campbell, CA, and the list goes on.
With such a focus on reducing the environmental impact from tailpipe emissions, it stands to reason that the LA Auto Show would be perfect to host the ZEVAS. But it will go beyond just EVs, as models like the Toyota Mirai and the Hyundai NEXO FCV will be eligible for The ZEVAS.
And of course, California is the top market in the US for ZEV and hybrid models currently. The state has committed to eliminating gas-powered models from new vehicle sales by 2035.
Side by side with mainstream models
Although the ZEV-only awards will be kicking off this year, the auto show will continue to showcase models from across the industry. It’s consistently been a venue where carmakers unveil new models and concepts and present their most popular trendsetting designs. It will continue to be that way for internal combustion engine cars, trucks, and SUVs, whether concepts, prototypes, or production, for the foreseeable future.
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