Most-Anticipated New Car Releases: Winter 2021

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Automotive Editor

Based out of the Washington, D.C. area, Joel Patel is an automotive journalist that hails from Northern Virginia. His work has been featured on various automotive outlets, including Autoweek, Digital Trends, and Autoblog. When not writing about cars, Joel enjoys trying new foods, wrenching on his car, and watching horror movies. 

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, Automotive Editor - January 20, 2021

2020 was a horrible year for the automotive industry because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Redesigns were pushed back, all-new cars were delayed, and consumers struggled to find models on dealer lots. While 2021 just started, things aren’t looking much better, but there are a few vehicles that we’re eager to see hit the market. From luxury sedans to compact pickup trucks, these are our most anticipated vehicles that are expected to go on sale in early 2021.

Nissan Frontier

Nissan Frontier

The Nissan Frontier is one of the oldest pickup trucks on the market – the last full redesign came out in 2005. The Frontier is in desperate need of an update, which will happen for the 2021 model year. Finally bringing the Frontier into the modern age, Nissan will give the pickup a new look on the inside and outside. Tech is another area where the new Frontier should be leagues ahead of the old one, as an 8-inch touchscreen with smartphone compatibility is expected to be standard.

One thing we do know about the Frontier is what powertrain it will come with. In an odd move, Nissan brought the new powertrain a year early, offering it for the 2020 model year. The next-gen Frontier will be powered by a 3.8-liter V6 engine that produces 310 horsepower and 281 pound-feet of torque. The engine is paired with a nine-speed automatic transmission. There’s some good news on the powertrain front, as it’s a drastic improvement over the pickup’s previous engines. If Nissan wants the Frontier to be competitive, look for the pickup to start at below $30,000. The truck will be unveiled on February 4.

Learn more about the 2021 Nissan Frontier »

Acura MDX

Acura MDX

Acura’s in the middle of a massive overhaul. For years, the automaker has been seen as a company that makes upscale Hondas. To change public perception, Acura’s overhauling a lot of its vehicles. In the popular midsize segment, the automaker’s set to introduce an all-new Acura MDX for the 2022 model year.

The 2022 MDX will cost more than last year’s model, carrying a starting price tag that’s $2,400 higher than before, but consumers get a lot more SUV. More spacious on the inside than before and boasting a larger cargo area than last year, the MDX promises to be a more comfortable SUV. The MDX also gets a tech overhaul, coming with wireless smartphone compatibility, two 12.3-inch displays, and the automaker’s AcuraWatch suite of advanced safety features.

A sporty MDX Type S model will arrive later this summer. It will be powered by a turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 engine that’s good for 355 horsepower. Upgraded brakes, stickier tires, and Acura’s SH-AWD system will be standard. The MDX Type S is expected to offer much higher levels of performance. Pricing for the 2022 MDX will start at $47,925 with sales expected to start at the beginning of February.

Learn more about the 2021 Acura MDX »

Mercedes-Benz S-Class

Mercedes S-Class

Few vehicles embody their respective segments as well as the Mercedes-Benz S-Class. For decades, the S-Class has been the benchmark of all luxury vehicles on sale and the all-new 2021 S-Class raises the bar even higher. The new S-Class doubles down on everything that’s made it the go-to leader in the class. The model offers more state-of-the-art technology, more high-end luxury features, and improved powertrains.

Technology has always been a high point of the S-Class and it’s been bolstered even further for the upcoming model. The sedan is offered with up to five digital screens. The main two screens include the central 12.8-inch OLED display and the 12.3-inch digital gauge cluster. Both of these screens are standard. The available rear-seat entertainment package adds two 11.6-inch screens for passengers in the back, as well as a 7-inch MBUX infotainment tablet.

As usual, the S-Class will boast the most opulent interior materials and a stunning design. Pricing for the S-Class will start at $110,850, a hefty figure, while the sedan is expected to go on sale during the first half of the year. Coupe and Cabriolet models are arriving at dealers now.

Learn more about the 2021 Mercedes S-Class »

Honda Ridgeline

Honda Ridgeline

In the compact pickup truck class, the Honda Ridgeline has always been the anti-pickup truck. For 2021, Honda is looking to increase the Ridgeline’s ruggedness with a host of updates. While the Ridgeline’s platform, powertrain, and overall look remain the same, Honda’s made some noteworthy changes to increase the truck’s appeal in the class.

At the front, the 2021 Ridgeline wears a new face with a redesigned grille, an updated front bumper, and new side vents. The pickup also wears new 18-inch wheels. A newly available Honda Performance Development package helps the Ridgeline look even more aggressive by adding black fender flares, a black grille, HPD graphics, and bronze wheels. Instead of coming with front-wheel drive, the 2021 model now has all-wheel drive as standard.

Pricing for the burlier Ridgeline will start at $37,665. It will arrive at dealerships at the beginning of February.

Learn more about the 2021 Honda Ridgeline »

, Automotive Editor

Based out of the Washington, D.C. area, Joel Patel is an automotive journalist that hails from Northern Virginia. His work has been featured on various automotive outlets, including Autoweek, Digital Trends, and Autoblog. When not writing about cars, Joel enjoys trying new foods, wrenching on his car, and watching horror movies. 

Follow On: Twitter

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