The coolest SUV concept ever

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Ford Bronco (2004)

Bill Poliano//Getty Images

Before Ford reintroduced the Bronco to its lineup in 2020, it showed off the concept in 2004. With a squared-off appearance reminiscent of the original, it’s clear where the current truck’s designers took inspiration from.

The only downside to this Bronco is how long it took Ford to realize that it should have been in production. The current Bronco is one of the most fun SUVs on sale. It’s unfortunate that we had to wait 16 years after this concept to experience Ford’s off-road capabilities.

Read our full review of the Bronco Raptor here


Jeep Wrangler Magneto

Jeep Wrangler Magnetic

The original Wrangler Magneto concept was introduced in 2021 as one of several Jeep concepts for the Easter Jeep Safari. It ditched the original V-6 in favor of an electric motor, but retained the original six-speed manual transmission and all-wheel drive drivetrain.

The electric motor made the same 285 horsepower but 273 pound-feet of torque, 13 more than the V-6. Jeep claimed it could reach 60 mph in just 6.8 seconds.

It was so popular that Jeep made a second, faster Magneto

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Mercedes-Benz EQG

Mercedes Eqg Concept
Mercedes EQ

The Mercedes-Benz EQG, which debuted in 2021, is essentially just an electric G-Wagen. Aside from some fascia changes, new wheels, and a square boot where the spare wheel would normally be placed, it looks almost identical to the G-Class on sale today.

Mercedes describes the EQG as a “close-to-production study,” hinting that we may see an all-electric production version of the company’s most popular SUV soon.

Learn more about EQG here


Hyundai seven

Hyundai Seven Concept

Hyundai’s eye-catching Seven concept, which will be shown in 2021, is said to be a preview of its upcoming three-row electric car, the Ioniq 7. Most of the looks are expected to carry over to the production car, and in this case, that’s a very good thing.

The symmetrical front fascia is already starting to take off as Hyundai’s new fascia in cars like the Kona. The large glass-boxed rear fascia is quite unconventional, although it may be a long way from production. We’ll see soon enough.

The Ioniq 7 is one of the many future models we expect

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Spyker D12 from Beijing to Paris

Spyker D12 Beijing to Paris
a nail

The Spyker D12 Peking-to-Paris was certainly ahead of its time. Introduced by the small Dutch supercar brand at the Geneva Motor Show in 2006, it came long before the super SUV craze took off, and as a result, the car never made it past the concept stage.

The original D12 was supposed to use a 12-cylinder engine, although later rumors pointed to a switch to hybrid or electric power. However, nothing has been achieved, and given the amount of time that has passed, we don’t expect anything to happen.

At one point we heard it would get a Koenigsegg V-8


Lincoln Navigator

Lincoln Navigator concept gullwing doors

In 2016, Lincoln showed off its coolest concept ever, the Navigator with oversized gullwing doors and full-size steps. At the time, Lincoln described the design as “quiet luxury,” simply because, aside from some shifting closing lines, you’d never know the SUV had those huge swinging doors.

Sadly, doors like these couldn’t be used in production, so the Navigator concept remained just that – a concept.

Check out our full review of Navigator here

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Audi Active Sphere

Audi Activesphere concept

The Audi Activesphere oscillates between SUV and grand tourer, offering a very elegant, low profile on a high-riding, off-road-ready chassis.

Instead of traditional touchscreens, you’ll find a host of augmented reality technologies inside to control the car such as navigation, entertainment and climate control. The tailgate is divided, with one section that folds down and a rear glass piece that slides up to reveal the cargo area.

Audi: Put your shooting brake concept into production


Buick Electra-X

Buick Electra X concept

The Buick Electra-X, which debuts in 2022, was designed by the folks at GM’s China studio in Shanghai — which isn’t too surprising given that China is one of Buick’s biggest markets.

The Electra-X is meant to be a preview of its upcoming electric lineup, and it uses decidedly un-Buick-like proportions and styling that remind us of using something more exotic and Italian. While the goal is to satisfy the Chinese market, we can expect cars with this type of design to appear in future Buicks in America as well.

We hope Buick makes a Avista

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Mercedes-Maybach’s vision of ultimate luxury

Mercedes Maybach's vision of the ultimate luxury concept
Mercedes Benz

The Vision Mercedes-Maybach Ultimate Luxury’s body lines don’t make it cool in the traditional sense – in fact, the car currently sits on our list of the world’s ugliest concepts. But we have to give credit to the Maybach team for building a quirky and unique car.

Although it may not be pretty, the Vision Ultimate Luxury, its exotic looks, 24-inch wheels, and rose gold-covered interior are enough to catch anyone’s attention. Isn’t provoking a reaction the goal of the concept?

Read about all the details here


Jeep Wrangler Trailcat

Jeep Wrangler Hellcat concept

The Jeep Wrangler Trailcat Concept is the Hellcat-powered Wrangler of our dreams. Introduced as part of a range of concepts at the 2016 Easter Jeep Safari, it made the same 707 horsepower as the Challenger and Charger Hellcats of the time.

The Trailcat used a six-speed manual transmission to deliver power to all four wheels, and featured massive 39.5-inch all-terrain tires and bucket seats from a Dodge Viper.

Read more about the Wrangler Trailcat here

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Lamborghini launcher

Lamborghini launcherView images

The Lanzador, which will be on display at The Quail in 2023, is a preview of Lamborghini’s first all-electric car, set to debut in 2028. The company has teased this car as a 2+2 grand tourer, but little was expected. A sports car that resembles a crossover. To emerge from under the covers. And we love it.

Lamborghini says the Lanzador is capable of generating one megawatt of power (1,341 horsepower) thanks to two electric motors, one for each axle. There’s also the Lamborghini Dinamica Veicolo Integrata, or LDVI. It’s a set of sensors and systems that have been developed to ensure an electric Lamborghini drives like a Lamborghini.

Here’s what we learned from Lamborghini’s CTO


Vision Mercedes-Benz Ener-G Force

Mercedes-Benz Vision Ener G Force concept
Mercedes Benz

Mercedes debuted the Ener-G Force Vision concept in 2012, with many thinking it would be an alternative to the G-Wagen. The G would expire indefinitely, meaning the Ener-G Force never saw production.

Considering its great looks and powerful equipment, that’s a shame. We would have liked to see the Ener-G offered for sale as a powerful Mercedes to take a position below the full-size G car. And with new rumors of a G-Class minivan on the way, we might get our wish.

Check out our review of the current G-Class

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Want to see more cool concepts?

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Shot by Brian Silvestro

Deputy Editor, Category Content

Brian Silvestro is Hearst Autos’ vice president of rating content. He spent more than seven years as a writer at Road & Track magazine, and continues to regularly contribute to car reviews, industry interviews, and more. He also has a taste for high-mileage, rusty projects and amateur endurance racing.

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