2022 Detroit Auto Show Editor’s Picks

The best cars and SUVs from the 2022 North American International Auto Show. As tends to be the case in this post-ish-pandemic world of auto shows, the North American International Auto Show was a strange one. It was at least mostly indoors and thus not at the mercy of Mother Nature. And unlike that first Chicago Show following the initial pandemic shutdown, this one was all assembled before the media arrived. Even with a much thinner show floor, the Detroit Auto Show still gave us a number of noteworthy reveals.

Now, full disclosure, the rules for our Detroit picks were made a little more flexible, since some of these vehicles were revealed a little before the week of the show. But we still focused on vehicles that were making their show debut, and were actually present on the floor. Sadly, that means we had to leave out the Jeep Recon and Wagoneer S electric SUV concepts. Odds are, those would've made it into our list of the top five if they had actually been on display. Now, on to the winners.

Video Transcript

GREG MIGLIORE: Welcome back to the North American International Auto Show. The Detroit Auto Show, the first show here in the Motor City since 2019. There were a lot of major reveals this year, but it was a bit quieter than you might remember in years past. Except all of that changed when the president decided to stop by, so that definitely made press days more interesting than I can honestly ever remember, from a pure news perspective.

Still, Autoblog editors were all about the sheet metal. We cover the show all across the floor, and of course, we have some favorites. So here they are, Autoblog's best in show. In fifth place was the Jeep Wrangler Willys 4XE. Associate editor Byron Hurd said, this was an easy one. While there's nothing so remarkable about the Willys that it makes this package a must-buy, it's nice to see another model available with a 4XE power train. Just one question, though. Where was the Recon?

In fourth place was the 2024 Chevy Blazer EV. Senior editor for all things green John Snyder said, as a fan of the K5 and S10 Blazer generations, I was a bit bemused when the current gen crossover came out until I drove it and realized how good it actually is. Now that there's a Blazer EV incoming, I feel like I can become a true fan again.

And there's a lot for fans to appreciate. Front wheel drive, rear wheel drive, and all wheel drive versions, and even a 557 horsepower SS variant. In a lineup of practical, Ultium-based Chevy utes, it's good to see an attainable product that enthusiasts can get behind, along the lines of Ford with its Mustang Mach-E while we wait for an electric Corvette.

In third place was the 2023 Chrysler 300C. I spoke on behalf of the staff for this one. My thoughts were Chrysler kicked off this year's show with a deserving salute to one of its icons. To be clear, this isn't the 300S with an available 5.7 liter. This is the 392 Hooligan with 485 horsepower that looks and sounds the part. While the 300 has languished in recent years, it's hard to understate just how much the sedan meant to Daimler-Chrysler and the Chrysler brand 17 years ago.

In second place was the 2024 Chevy Equinox EV. News editor Joel Stocksdale notes, while it may not be the most glamorous car on the floor at Detroit, the Equinox EV is probably the most important. Our second place pick for this year's show is an EV with an impressively low starting price around $30,000. But this isn't a tiny hatchback. It offers impressive range between 250 and 300 miles, and amazingly, it even looks good, particularly in the cheery blue and white paint scheme on the display model.

This is a real look at the mainstream future of EVs, and it's looking good. The top vote-getter, perhaps no surprise, the 2024 Ford Mustang. To sum this up on behalf of Autoblog, best in show this year goes to the 2024 Ford Mustang. The new Mustang hits all of the high notes for the car's large and passionate fan base. The V8, check. Familiar styling, check. A manual transmission, check.

This is all good. This is likely it, though, for the internal combustion engine Mustang, and Ford played to the car's strengths. With the Challenger done next year and the Camero's future uncertain, Ford's long-running pony car may end up as the last one standing. For Autoblog, I'm Greg Migliore.