2022 is set to be a year of transition in many ways. For great numbers of us, there will be hope of us finally being able to say a ‘goodbye’ – of sorts – to the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic. But for car manufacturers, this year will be a major transition period, too – albeit in the sense of the continuing shift from internal combustion engines to the electrification of their model ranges.
Naturally, every automotive marque out there will wish to make 2022 a year of triumph. But which car brands would we particularly urge you to keep an eye out for over the remaining 11 months of the year? Below, we’ve picked out just three.
The Cupra brand is the independent high-performance branch of the Spanish manufacturer SEAT – indeed, the two names have been closely associated with each other for many years. In 2018, Cupra became a brand in its own right – so, why does 2022 look set to be a landmark year for the marque?
First of all, there are signs of this being ‘Cupra’s year’ already, it having been recently reported that the brand was one of the biggest risers during January in terms of new car sales – 207% up from what it managed in January 2021.
Then, there is the fact that there has been more than a little excitement over the prospect of the Cupra Born, which is set to give youthful buyers a very tempting ‘hot hatchback’ option among mid-size electric vehicles (EVs) when deliveries begin in April.
Which? has reported that there will be four motor options for purchasers of the Born – offering power output of up to 239hp – while the most powerful model will also provide a 335-mile charge. Prices are expected to start at £33,735.
The Norfolk sports-car maker Lotus is one of the iconic performance-car brands to emerge from these isles, and even had a fresh Formula 1 presence in the 2010s. But have you heard quite so much about the marque recently? We dare say, probably not.
2022, though, looks set to change that dramatically. The £2 million Evija electric hypercar may have set more hearts racing, but given its exceedingly limited production numbers, it’s not the vehicle that is set to truly spearhead Lotus back to the forefront of most petrolheads’ affections.
That role will instead be taken by the Emira, which – as Top Gear has observed – will make history as the final petrol-powered Lotus. With the 3.5-litre V6 variant claimed to reach 62mph from nothing in less than 4.5 seconds, on the way to a top speed of 180mph, it’s got the makings of a serious rival to the Jaguar F-Type and Porsche Cayman. Prices are set to begin at about £60,000.
There has been no denying the ever-growing influence of Chinese brands on the UK car market in recent years. And while you might not immediately recognise the name of Big Wall Motor, one of its brands – ORA – could be set to challenge the familiar marques in a big way in ’22.
How so? Well, just take a look at the upcoming retro supermini, the Cat 01. This all-electric hatch could be a very thought-provoking option for those who are interested in switching to a Volkswagen ID.3-sized EV, but who have baulked at the prices typical of this category so far.
As Auto Express has noted, the Cat 01’s prices are expected to start at around £25,000, undercutting the VW by about £5,000, without “any sacrifices on specification”. The combination of a 169bhp motor with an either 48kWh or 63kWh battery pack – the latter delivering a 261-mile range – seems to us like it could be a winner among British buyers.
There you go – just three automotive brands that we think a lot of vehicle purchasers in the UK will not be able to ignore during 2022. And if you are planning to be one of those buyers, why not partner with the specialists in car finance with no deposit here at Car Finance Genie, to ensure you benefit from the right vehicle on the most competitive possible finance deal this year?