Each January, the media and consumers focus on two wildly divergent cities: Las Vegas and Detroit. Vegas is home to the CES, the Consumer Electronic Show, which has become a launching pad for car technology that is imminent, not too far off, or just plain fanciful.

In Detroit, the North American International Auto Show soldiers on, and manufacturers introduce their newest vehicles.

This week’s episode of “Talking Cars with Consumer Reports” drops just as CES is wrapping up, and our panel discusses advanced battery technology, how augmented reality might be used in cars, and a weird hat-slash-headband gizmo that’s supposed to make your driving experience better.

Next, the group turns its attention to the new 2018 Buick Regal Sportback, which was just added to the CR fleet. This shapely four-door looks like a sedan, but it’s really a hatchback, much like an Audi A7 or Tesla Model S. The Buick proved to be a bit of a challenge at first … but you’ll have to watch to find out why.

Finally, we answer some viewer questions on topics ranging from tires to cold-starting a car.

Watch or listen in to our podcast to find out when cars will be using your thoughts to modify your travel experience.

Panelists Ryan Pszczolkowski, Jon Linkov, and Mike Monticello
Panelists: Ryan Pszczolkowski, Jon Linkov, and Mike Monticello

As with other “Talking Cars” episodes, this one is available free through Apple Podcasts. (Subscribe to the audio or video.) You’ll also find the audio on Spotify and video on YouTube.