New Model News

Redesigned 2021 Toyota Mirai gets new sleek styling, 30% more range

The Toyota Mirai has been redesigned for the 2021 model year.

Photo courtesy of Toyota

The 2021 Toyota Mirai is more than just a unique hydrogen-powered sedan. It's evolved to become a thoroughly modern vehicle with a luxury level interior and extended range, complete with an exterior that seamlessly blends in with the rest of the Toyota lineup.

Built on a rear-wheel drive platform, the 2021 Toyota Mirai is the first model year in the second-generation of the hydrogen-powered sedan's lifespan. Toyota is promising that the new model will deliver a "more powerful, engaging, and even quieter driving experience."

2021 Toyota Mirai front face grille The Toyota Mirai has been completely redesigned to be flashier and have a larger range.Photo courtesy of Toyota

The Japanese automaker is boasting about a targeted 30 percent range increase in the new model. The range of the 2020 Toyota Mirai is 312 miles. The increase would put the 2021 model's range around 400 miles.

While the Mirai uses an electric motor to move the Mirai's wheels, the motor is powered by electricity generated when hydrogen is combined with oxygen. This is different than a typical hybrid vehicle powertrain which uses a combination of gasoline and electricity to power a vehicle's wheels. Only water is released by the tailpipe of a hydrogen-powered car, as opposed to the emissions of a typical internal combustion engine car.

2021 Toyota Mirai side wheels The 2021 Mirai has an elongated nose, similar to the design of the Lexus LC.Photo courtesy of Toyota

Unlike a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) or a battery electric vehicle (BEV), the Mirai does not need to be plugged in to get power. Its hydrogen tanks, which are extremely difficult to permeate, are filled up at a fuel pump in a similar fashion to a typical gas station.

The car is being first show wearing available 20-inch alloy wheels and a brand new blue paint job that has never before been featured on a Toyota vehicle.

2021 Toyota Mirai interior The interior of the Mirai is plush and full of luxury level appointments.Photo courtesy of Toyota

Inside, the cabin of the Mirai is modern and plush but fits in line with the current visual aesthetics and material appointments of Toyota and Lexus vehicles. It comes standard with an 8-inch digital combination meter and available digital rearview mirror. A 12.3-inch infotainment touch touch screen is standard, as are a 14-speaker JBL sound system and navigation.

Toyota is boasting that the platform change yields more passenger space than in the previous generation Mirai.

2021 Toyota Mirai interior center console The platform change for the Mirai means that there's more passenger space.Photo courtesy of Toyota.

Pricing for the 2021 Mirai has yet to be announced. The 2019 model starts at $58,500. According to Toyota, currently about 95 percent of Mirais are leased and current lease prices for a Mirai have it priced around $350 per month with just $2,499 due at signing.

Cadillac is moving the car buying experience into an interactive video-based platform as the brand works to gain new customers.

Photo courtesy of Cadillac

Edmunds.com is predicting hat sales of used cars will rise through 2020. At the same time, used car prices are expected to decline. That's a recipe for success for used car buyers according to Carvana. The online used vehicle retailer is predicting four trends for used car shoppers.

Mainstream Cars Stay Hot

Carvana believes that demand for used cars from mass-market brands like Honda, Toyota, and Nissan will continue. In 2019 small and mid-sized cars showed the strongest price appreciation in the used-vehicle market, a trend that is expected to continue in 2020.

Consumers Choose Quality Over Everything

According to Carvana, "A recent study from Brandwatch asked consumers what attributes were most important for brands in the auto industry, quality was the most popular option with 30% of the vote. Affordability followed, with 21% of respondents choosing it as the most important attribute. Carvana has more than 8,000 cars available on their site for local buyers priced under $15,000."

Customers Continue to Get Comfortable Shopping Online

If there's one thing America can agree on, it's not politics. It's that they generally hate going to car dealerships. Shopping for vehicles online has grown tremendously over the past decade and Carvana expects that to continue, a trend driven by the ability for customers to "do it all" from financing to browsing to scheduling delivery without ever having to talk to a salesperson.

According to Carvana, 75% of car buyers are willing to purchase a car online and 97% of car buyers do online research before a purchase.

The Digital Economy Will Continue to Transform Car Buying

Technology is making it easier than ever to buy a car. New online initiatives like Cadillac Live allow customers to talk to a salesperson without leaving their couch. Getting a 360-degree view of the vehicle is possible thanks to sights from most manufacturers, and CarFax offers reports on used vehicles.

The Toyota RAV4 Hybrid is one of the winners of the U.S. News & World Report 2020 Best Cars for the Money awards.

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.

It isn't just about which cars are good. For many buyers, it's about reaching the perfect blend of good, fuel efficient, and bang for your buck. The annual U.S. News & World Report Best Cars for the Money awards rates many of those factors, and more.

"Cars with low price tags aren't always good values," said Jamie Page Deaton, executive editor of U.S. News Best Cars. "A cheap car can have high ownership costs, making it more expensive in the long run. Plus, a lot of inexpensive cars don't give you a great ownership experience; it's not a good deal if it's not a good car. Every Best Car for the Money winner is a pleasure to own and a good value overall."

Within each class, the award winner has the best combination of quality and value. U.S. News & World Report measured quality using a car's overall score in the U.S. News Best Car Rankings. The overall score is based on safety and reliability data, as well as the collective opinion of the automotive press on a given model's performance and interior and how strongly each reviewer recommends the car. They measured value by looking at each model's real-time transaction prices, provided by TrueCar, and five-year total cost of ownership data, calculated by Vincentric.

Covering 11 categories, the awards highlight the cars, SUVs ,and minivans that give drivers the best combination of quality and value in their respective classes.

Here are the winners.

Best 2-Row SUV for the Money: 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe

2020 Hyundai Santa Fe

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

Best 3-Row SUV for the Money: 2020 Kia Sorento

2020 Kia Sorento

Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

Best Compact Car for the Money: 2020 Kia Forte

2020 Kia Forte

Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

Best Compact SUV for the Money: 2020 Honda CR-V

2020 Honda CR-V

American Honda Motor Co., Inc

Best Hybrid and Electric Car for the Money: 2020 Toyota Corolla Hybrid

2020 Toyota Corolla Hybrid

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.

Best Hybrid and Electric SUV for the Money: 2020 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

2020 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.

Best Large Car for the Money: 2020 Chevrolet Impala

2020 Chevrolet Impala

Photo courtesy of Chevrolet

Best Midsize Car for the Money: 2020 Toyota Camry

2020 Toyota Camry

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.

Best Minivan for the Money: 2020 Kia Sedona

2020 Kia Sedona

Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

Best Subcompact Car for the Money: Honda Fit

2020 Honda Fit

American Honda Motor Co., Inc

Best Subcompact SUV for the Money: 2020 Kia Soul

2020 Kia Soul GT-Line Turbo Photo courtesy of Kia Motors