"I've been having an extramarital affair for a decade," actor Robert Downey Jr. said with a frown. "With a brand," he quickly added, his glum expression transforming into a grin.
The "Iron Man" actor turned out for a media preview staged by Audi to mark the opening of the annual Los Angeles Auto Show this week, and Downey ticked off a list of the various models he has owned in recent years, including one of the R8 sports car featured in the first film starring that superhero. But it was a new Audi that Downey admitted now lusting for, the e-tron GT, an all-electric supercar that the German luxury brand plans to put into production in two years.
The e-tron GT was just one of many "electrified" vehicles debuting at this year's L.A. Auto Show media preview, a mix running from mainstream to exotic. Indeed, the industry is on the verge of opening the floodgates on dozens of battery-based vehicles — from "mild" hybrids to all-electrics — coming to market over the next 12 months. As many as 100 electrified vehicles are scheduled to come to market by the end of 2020. But while there's plenty of new cars, an old question remains: will there be enough buyers to justify the surge?