2019 LA Auto Show wrap-up: Audi, Jeep Gladiator, Kia, Porsche and Rivian brought the heat

The 2019 Los Angeles Auto Show was a good one, with more new cars, trucks and SUVs than one could easily shake a stick at. Everything from the brutish Jeep Gladiator to the high-tech Rivian R1T, AutoMobility LA, as it’s also known, proved why it’s one of the most important auto shows in the calendar year by bringing out something new to entice just about everyone who loves cars. Anyone who sets foot in the Los Angeles Convention Center for the LA Auto Show from Nov. 30 to Dec. 9 during the show’s public days will not be disappointed.

While auto shows often tend to end up focusing on a single vehicle class — think SUVs at the Chicago Auto Show or exotics at Geneva — the LA show didn’t seem to this year. But, as we learned from Seinfeld, something lacking a central focus can still be highly entertaining. With debuts ranging from the highly anticipated Wrangler-based Jeep Gladiator pickup to the next Kia Soul, Mazda3, Porsche 911 and all-new Hyundai Palisade SUV, Roadshow’s staff found themselves pretty busy putting their butts in all the new seats.

Here’s our roundup of the most important debuts so that you’ll know what to look out for if you find yourself in LA or if you find yourself shopping for a new ride in a few months. For even more detailed look, be sure to visit our 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show landing page — it’s a convenient way to access all the in-depth coverage of all the individual models that we looked at this week.

Audi E-Tron GT concept

Audi

The Audi E-Tron GT is still a concept car — and holy hell is it a good-looking one — though it will lead to a full production model that launches in late 2020. Its powertrain technology is closely related to that in the forthcoming Porsche Taycan, and that’s a good thing. The key specs that you need to know: It’s got a 90-kWh battery pack giving it a 248-mile range, as well as 590 total system horsepower and a 0-60-mph time of 3.5 seconds. The E-Tron GT will help Audi get toward its goal of selling 20 electrified models by 2025, and if more of them look like this, then we’re all for it.

2019 Bentley Continental GT Convertible

Bentley

We already love the new Bentley Continental GT, and now there’s a fabulous convertible version that can do 207 miles per hour. The top, which Bentley says keeps the cabin 3 decibels quieter than in the old Conti GT convertible, can open or close in just 19 seconds when traveling at speeds up to 30 mph. Under the hood is a 6.0-liter, twin-turbocharged W12 engine, good for 626 horsepower and 664 pound-feet of torque. The convertible is 375 pounds heavier than the coupe, but will still get to 60 mph in just 3.7 seconds. The new Conti GT made its debut in Los Angeles during the week of the show, but strangely, was not at the show itself.

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