When COVID-19 first began to spread, the assumption was that new car sales would dry up—but we know now that this wasn’t the case. Because public transportation and ride-sharing services are currently seen as risky, there has been an increase in the desire for new vehicles.
The automotive industry is responding to consumer demand by rolling out a lineup of compelling new and revised models for 2021. Those who are car shopping will be able to choose from everything from the all-electric Mustang Mach-E to the reborn Chevy Trailblazer.
Let’s take a look at the ten most intriguing 2021 models that will be (or already are) rolling into dealerships.
Top 10 New & Revised Models You’ll Want to Check Out in 2021
Whether you’re looking for an all-electric sedan or a rugged off-road SUV, the lineup of new cars for 2021 has something for everyone. Here are the top 10 model year vehicles that you’ll want to check out—and possibly take for a test drive.
Note: The actual price of each vehicle may vary from what’s listed in this article.
1. BMW i4
Tesla has dominated the electric vehicle scene since the company introduced its first model, the Roadster, in 2008. But BMW plans to give Elon and his team a run for their money. By 2030, the German automaker promises to have more than seven million electrified vehicles on the road.
One such car is the 2021 BMW i4—an all-electric sedan based on the iconic 3-Series. According to BMW, the all-new four-door will boast a 530 horsepower electric motor, an 80 kWh battery pack, and a driving range of 372 miles. Car and Driver Magazine anticipates the i4 will be available in both a rear-wheel drive and an all-wheel drive layout.
Although official details regarding pricing are not yet available, the i4 is expected to start at around $50,000.
2. Ford Bronco
These days, vintage Ford Broncos from the ’60s and ’70s command a lot of money on the classic car market. Pristine models can go for hundreds of thousands of dollars, proving the boxy Bronco has reached icon status.
In case you hadn’t heard, Ford is cashing in on the original Bronco’s popularity by introducing an all-new version—complete with retro styling—for the 2021 model year. Buyers can choose either a two-door or a four-door variant of the SUV, both of which come with a removable top.
The 2021 Ford Bronco offers two available turbocharged EcoBoost engine options: a 2.3L four-cylinder (270 hp, 310 lb.-ft) and a 2.7L V6 (310 hp, 400 lb.-ft.). Shifting duties are handled by either a standard 7-speed or an optional 10-speed automatic transmission.
As you might expect, a selectable, two-speed transfer case comes standard.
For around $28,500, you can get behind the wheel of an all-new Ford Bronco.
3. Ford Bronco Sport
There’s been a lot of hype around the all-new Ford Bronco. So much so, in fact, that the smaller Bronco Sport has been essentially overlooked.
While the baby Bronco isn’t quite as rugged as its big brother, it does come with some noteworthy equipment, such as standard full-time four-wheel drive. Powertrain options include either a 1.5L EcoBoost four-cylinder (181 hp, 190 lb.-ft.) or an EcoBoost 2.0L four-cylinder (245 hp, 275 lb.-ft.) engine paired with one of two 8-speed automatic transmissions.
If you want to park a mini Bronco in your driveway, expect to shell out around $27,000 for a base model.
4. Ford F-150
The Ford F-150 has been America’s best-selling pickup truck for 43 years—and for 2021, the perennial favorite has been completely redesigned.
Without a doubt, the biggest news is the introduction of an all-new hybrid model, which combines an EcoBoost V6 engine with a 35 kW electric motor for an output rating of 430 horsepower and 570 lb.-ft. of torque.
The hybrid powertrain creates more power than any other engine available in the F-150. Still, hybrids aren’t for everyone, so Ford is offering buyers five additional engine options. The lineup includes everything from a naturally-aspirated 3.3L V6 (290 hp, 265 lb.-ft.) to a Power Stroke Turbo Diesel 3.0L V6 (250 hp, 250 lb.-ft.). All gas engines come with both port and direct fuel injection for enhanced economy and performance.
Ford was one of the firsts automakers to employ a 10-speed automatic transmission, and that’s what comes in every version of the 2021 F-150. All models also come with the option of rear-wheel drive or four-wheel drive.
Are you looking to make the 2021 F-150 your own? Expect to spend around $29,000 for a basic, single cab model.
5. Ford Mustang Mach-E
For years, Ford has been building interest in the Mustang Mach-E by leaving a breadcrumb trail of design sketches and prototypes across the internet. In fact, the automaker has been promising the all-electric Mustang for so long that skeptics were certain it would never make it into production.
But finally, the Mustang Mach-E is ready to hit showrooms. Propulsion for the all-electric crossover comes from either one or two electric motors, depending on the trim level. The dual-motor setup (standard on the high-performance GT model) gives the ‘Stang all-wheel drive capability, along with 480 horsepower and up to 634 lb.-ft. of torque.
Driving range is also impressive. Two battery packs are available: standard-range (up to 230 miles) and extended-range (up to 300 miles).
Pricing for the Ford Mustang Mach-E starts at around $43,000 for the base model.
6. Chevy Tahoe and Suburban
Barry Engle, executive vice president and president, General Motors North America, said, “There are no vehicles like Tahoe and Suburban – which have starred in Hollywood movies, carried military heroes and world leaders, and helped create countless family memories.”
And it’s true. The Tahoe and Suburban—along with their GMC-brand twins, the Yukon and Yukon XL—have been staples across America for decades. Now, for 2021, the pair of Chevy SUVs is getting an overhaul complete with a fresh exterior, upgraded interior, and plenty of new features.
The biggest news for 2021, though, is the option of an all-new Duramax Turbo Diesel 3.0L inline six-cylinder engine (277 hp, 460 lb.-ft.). Buyers can also opt for the tried and true 5.3L V8 (355 hp, 383 lb.-ft.) or the 6.2L (402 hp, 460 lb.-ft.). All engines pair with a 10-speed automatic transmission. Rear-wheel drive comes standard; four-wheel drive is available.
As for pricing, the 2021 Tahoe starts at approximately $49,000, and the Suburban comes in at a hair under $52,000.
7. Chevy Trailblazer
It’s been 11 years since buyers could purchase a new Trailblazer from their local dealership. Finally, for 2021, the small SUV is back, sporting a brand-new look and the latest technology.
The Trailblazer is available with either a turbocharged 1.2L three-cylinder (137 hp, 162 lb.-ft.) or a turbocharged 1.3L three-cylinder engine (155 hp, 174 lb.-ft.). A continuously variable transmission (CVT) and front-wheel drive come standard, while a 9-speed automatic and all-wheel drive are available.
The all-wheel drive system is selectable, which means the driver can turn it off to improve fuel economy.
Potential buyers will be pleased to know that the Chevy Trailblazer starts at a relatively affordable $19,000.
8. Toyota Mirai
If you’re like most people, you’ve probably never seen a Toyota Mirai fuel cell electric vehicle (FCEV) before. The first-generation model, which debuted in 2014, was only available in the two places where hydrogen stations exist: California and Hawaii.
FCEVs use hydrogen to create electricity and power an electric motor. Currently, North America doesn’t have the infrastructure to support FCEVs—but Toyota isn’t giving up on the technology. Instead, the automaker is pushing forward by rolling out an all-new version of the Mirai.
The Mirai gets power from a 128 kW fuel cell stack that pairs with a rear-mounted electric motor. Output is a respectable 180 horsepower and 221 lb-ft of torque.
Interestingly, unlike the first generation Miari, the latest model is rear-wheel drive.
Although Toyota has yet to release details regarding the Mirai’s pricing, according to Car and Driver Magazine, the 2021 model should cost 20% less than the previous generation. The outgoing car has a base price of nearly $60,000.
9. Nissan Rogue
Even though the Rogue can’t compare sales-wise to the Toyota RAV4, the Rogue is Nissan’s best-selling vehicle—and it’s completely redesigned for 2021.
The latest version of the Rogue rides on an all-new platform. Both the interior and the exterior of the SUV have been updated, as has the list of standard and available features.
For the 2021 model year, the Rogue’s 2.5L four-cylinder engine has been redesigned to make more power (181 hp) and more torque (181 lb.-ft.). A CVT transmission handles shifting duties. Buyers can choose either front-wheel drive or all-wheel drive on their SUV.
If you’re thinking about getting a new Nissan Rogue, consider that pricing starts at just under $26,000.
10. Toyota RAV4 Prime
America’s best-selling SUV, the Toyota RAV4, is available for the 2021 model year as a plug-in hybrid, called the Prime.
Two electric motors (one in the front and one in the rear) combine with a 2.5L four-cylinder engine to make the Prime the most powerful RAV4 ever. The combined output is 302 horsepower and 163 lb.-ft. of torque, which Toyota claims is enough to propel the SUV from 0-60 mph in just 5.7 seconds.
The Prime is also engineered to be efficient. According to Toyota, the SUV can travel 42 miles on battery power before needing assistance from the gas engine.
Pricing for the Toyota RAV4 Prime starts at a little over $38,000.
You can learn more about the RAV4 Prime and it’s fuel economy ratings by reading our article Toyota Shares EPA Ratings for 2021 RAV4 Prime Plug-In.