Electric Car Brands: The Complete List, From Tesla To NIO
Is the electric car the most popular type of electric transport? We’d say so, given the larger than life feel tied to certain electric car brands.
They certainly receive the most attention from readers.
Seriously, go Google ‘Electric Car Brands’ and see how many pages come up; that’s hours upon hours of EV content right there.
Make no mistake about it, it’s a fantastic time to be alive, given we’re seeing the rise of sustainable transport, led by electric cars, and the manufacturers behind them.
It won’t be long before more electric cars occupy motorways/roads, making it essential that you know who’s making what and where they’re making them.
Finally, a definitive list without the added waffle, covering companies you might have heard of in passing, but never stopped to check out fully.
That changes today.
Tesla is a household name, that much is true, but there are dozens of other electric car companies you should be aware of.
Known, unknown, new, old; we’ll be covering them all.
This includes the major league car brands building electric hybrids and all-electric vehicles.
Tesla leads the charge as far as name value goes
Dedicated Pure Electric Car Brands
Below is our list of dedicated electric car brands that specialise in multiple types of vehicles.
You’ll find that some of these names will manufacture trucks in addition to cars, others dealing with one or the other.
Look to the new electric car brands if you’re after futuristic car designs.
Sure, some of them exist as concepts and might not ever come to market. Still, some are founded by big names in the space — or have experience working at other notable car companies before taking an electric turn.
Alcraft: A Dark Horse In The Range Race
CEO: David Alcraft
Headquarters: Northamptonshire, UK
Hi-tech innovation and engineering ingenuity are hallmarks of the first company on the complete list of electric car brands. David Alcraft, founder and chairman of Alcraft has a track record of building established British businesses from the ground up.
The man is a qualified pharmacist and chemical engineer. Basically, without him, there would be no Alcraft.
Concept vehicle, the GT, is the first Alcraft car, designed by Matthew Humphries. Proposed designs look incredibly promising. The GT is said to be a lightweight vehicle, complete with wraparound windows and the ability to travel up to 400 miles per charge.
Range like this is very rare to find; it will be interesting to see if Alcraft can pull it off.
Top Car: Alcraft GT
Arrival: The Commercial Vehicle Specialist
CEO: Denis Sverdlov
Headquarters: London, UK
British automobile company, Arrival develops electric vehicles of all shapes and sizes.
One of the major selling points of this EV company is claims that their vehicles are incredibly cost-effective.
The company was considered practically bulletproof after investment from Hyundai and Kia (adding €100 billion to the pot).
The recent reveal of a zero-emissions bus with Covid safety measures has only caused the profile of this EV company to rise significantly. So much so that the company went public in March.
A prototype van made by Arrival can travel up to 120 miles on each charge, but we’d be crazy not to mention the Arrival Bus.
Companies like Arrival make it look so effortless.
Top Vehicle: The Arrival Bus
BEDEO: Transporters For All
CEO: Osman Boyner
Headquarters: London, UK
BEDEO design, source, build and configure electric batteries for a wide selection of vehicles, not limited to cars.
A lot of their work is delivered on spec depending on the task at hand. BEDEO works on projects across the electric vehicle landscape, from land, to sea, to air (oh my).
Electric vans/passenger vehicles appear to be their main forte, given the strengths of models like the eDoblo Van and eDucato Passenger.
BEDEO deal in electric batteries and other parts mostly.
Consider them more of a B2B type.
Top Car: eDoblo Van
Byton: The Premium EV Startup
Headquarters: Nanjing, China
China is home to various electric car companies; they pose the strongest competition to the US.
Byton makes high-end electric vehicles. Look to the Byton M-Byte for the perfect example.
The M-Byte is a premium SUV with an interior display that resembles a spaceship console more than anything else. It’s a multi-purpose vehicle with multiple properties.
Most electric cars follow the same archetype visually, not the M-Byte, or any other electric vehicle coming out of the Byton camp, for that matter.
Premium EVs are pretty popular amongst buyers, putting Byton in good stead once it comes to market.
Top Car: Byton M-Byte
Canoo: Crafting Lifestyle Vehicles From The Future
CEO: Ulrich Kranz
Headquarters: Los Angeles, CA, US
LA-based automotive manufacturer Canoo, formerly Evelozcity (circa 2019), has made it their mission to produce affordable vehicles emphasising space.
Canoo specialises in futuristic minivans and SUVs — giving Tesla’s Cybertruck a run for its money for the most out there-looking electric vehicle.
Canoo has made news in the past for working alongside Hyundai Motor Group to manufacture shuttles for the company.
Rumours of Canoo working on the undisclosed Apple car project began to circulate in January of this year; exciting stuff, if you believe them.
The Canoo Lifestyle Vehicle is the company’s current magnum opus, with the MPDV and Pickup Truck trailing closely behind.
Needless to say, the company is a major player in the world of EV.
Top Vehicle: Canoo Lifestyle Vehicle (SUV)
Faraday Future: A California Powerhouse
CEO: Carsten Breitfeld
Headquarters: Los Angeles, CA, US
Start-ups like Faraday Future have a tonne of momentum as they tend to be rather passionate about the projects they work on. Or at least that’s the impression we get given the praise/success the company has found.
Faraday Future is named after English scientist Michael Faraday — aka the guy who discovered electromagnetic induction.
Flagship car, the FF 91, is sleek as it is ingenious, matching Tesla with nifty features that make each drive worthwhile.
The Faraday 701-EV is one highlight worth sharing. Why? Because it took part in Formula E competitions. That’s right, there’s a racing league specifically for electric vehicles!
Top Vehicle: FF 91
Fisker: A Pioneer In The Electric Car Market
CEO: Henrik Fisker
Headquarters: Manhatten Beach, CA, US
A rival to Tesla, Fisker Automotive is an American EV company, known worldwide for the notorious Fisker Karma.
We should mention that the company did go bankrupt a few years ago but would later reappear under a new trademark.
CEO Henrik Fisker made his name in the industry by designing countless premium cars, including the Artega GT and Aston Martin DB9. He also sat on the board of Aston Martin at one point in time.
There are flashy cars, and then there’s the Fisker Karma, a plug-in hybrid masking as a luxury sedan; a bonafide electric sports car, released all the way back in 2011.
Plans to release the Fisker Ocean in 2022 are well underway.
Top Vehicle: Fisker Karma
Lordstown Motors: The Team Behind The Lordstown Endurance
CEO: Steve Burns
Headquarters: Lordstown, OH, US
For a company that only opened its doors in 2018, Lordstown Motors does an incredible job in appearing more experienced than most.
The company currently run a former General Motors ran plant out of Lordstown Assembly. General Motors has a vested interest in Lordstown Motors, and actually gave them $75 million to bring its EVs to reality.
This electric car company is currently working on an all-wheel-drive electric pick up truck, aptly named the Lordstown Endurance.
Just looking at this electric vehicle tells you it’s something special; the pickup of the not-so-distant future.
Top Vehicle: Lordstown Endurance
Lucid: An Elite Car Brand Through And Through
CEO: Peter Rawlinson
Headquarters: Newark, CA, US
Looking for an elite level electric car?
Check out Lucid, a premium automotive company that offer a range of high-end electric vehicles with speed and endurance in mind. Lucid could very well be the sports car company of the future if everything goes to plan.
Here’s an interesting tidbit for you, Lucid was initially known as Atieva. They’d later rebrand in October 2016, declaring their intent on crafting all-electric luxury vehicles. Their staff is made up of former employees from Tesla and Mazda.
The Lucid Air is arguably their best electric car to date, with a max horsepower of 1,080 and range of over 500 miles per charge! Talk about impressive.
A Lucid Air can go 0-60 in 2.5 seconds, only adding to the overall appeal.
Top Vehicle: Lucid Air
Nikola: The Electric Truckmaker
CEO: Mark Russell
Headquarters: Phoenix, AZ, US
The Nikola Corporation aren’t your standard electric car company; they’re your go-to name for heavy-duty vehicles tied to shipping.
Did you know that the company is named after a certain inventor? We’ll give you three guesses as to who.
The best Nikola vehicle is a toss-up between the Nikola Tre and the Nikola Two, depending on the task at hand. The Nikola Two can travel up to 900 miles on a single charge. Torque vectoring provides a lot more control of the truck, too, which is ideal given the size of the thing.
Top Vehicle: Nikola Two
NIO: The Battery-Swapping Car Brand
CEO: William Li
Headquarters: Shanghai, China
A rising star in the world of electric car manufacturing and the company behind innovative battery-swapping services; say hello to NIO.
Innovative is a word we’d use to describe this Chinese innovator.
The companies battery swap stations are hailed as a cheaper alternative to owning batteries, an initiative that could become the norm in many countries should electric eliminate the need for petrol cars completely. We recently reported on NIO’s deal with gas station juggernaut Sinopec.
NIO Pilot systems add an additional layer of functionality to their vehicles. Features include: adaptive cruise control, emergency braking and lane-keeping.
NIO is also developing a level 4 self-driving system alongside Mobileye; expected to be sold by 2022.
Top Vehicle: NIO ES8
Rivian: An Electric Car Brand To Watch
CEO: Robert “RJ” Scaringe
Headquarters: Plymouth, MI, US
American automaker Rivian is a powerhouse of a manufacturer, to say the least, with over a decades worth of experience.
In 2011, the company switched lanes to focus on building utility vehicles with electric parts.
Rivian have a knack for crafting unique off-road vehicles, the kind that induces feelings of adventure every time you’re behind the wheel. The Rivian R1T alone is said to be an adventure in and of itself, with its quad-motor and high towing capacity.
Rivian was hired by Amazon to produce a large number of delivery vans in an effort to combat carbon emissions. Expect to see these Rivian vehicles sooner rather than later, as there are plans to have over 10,000 vans on the road by 2030.
Top Vehicle: Rivian R1T
Tesla: A Household Name
CEO: Elon Musk
Headquarters: Palo Alto, CA, US
Tesla is the quintessential electric car company, leading the charge for all things electric, be it vehicles or Powerwalls.
CEO Elon Musk is an enigmatic figure who has changed the game in more ways than one.
The first Tesla Roadster was a big hit back in the early 00s, designed with performance in mind. Later models would continue to excel, reaching max speeds up to 250mph. Other vehicles in their inventory include the Model S, Model 3, Model X and Model Y.
The success of Tesla has grown organically through word of mouth.
It’s difficult not to think of this company whenever the words “electric car” are spoken.
Basically, Tesla is an oligopoly that moves like a monopoly.
They are probably the reason you clicked on this post, to begin with.
Top Vehicle: Model 3
Workhorse: Helping Companies Take The Electric Pledge
CEO: Duane Hughes
Headquarters: Cincinnati, OH, US
If you’ve never heard of Workhorse, then you’ve been missing out. This American manufacturing company produces some of the best electric delivery vehicles there is.
It’s not just electric cars, wither. The company make some pretty nifty aerial vehicles, too.
In 2018, the company announced plans to debut an octocopter to transport medical supplies in urban areas. Workhorse, also in 2018, announced a collaboration with UPS to develop and manufacture a fleet of plug-in electric trucks.
Their clientele continues to grow, which is certainly telling.
It will be interesting to see who rules the electric delivery market in future.
Who you picking?
Is it Workhorse?
Top Vehicle: Workhorse C1000
XPeng: One Of China’s Leading Electric Car Brands
CEO: He Xiaopeng
Headquarters: Guangzhou, China
XPeng, a Chinese electric vehicle company, is paving a path to the future with some pretty incredible battery-powered motors.
Models of XPeng vehicles cover everything from SUVs to sedans, depending on what your preferences are as a buyer. XPeng partnered with a car rental platform in 2020 to bring sustainable options to potential rent-ees.
The company is in constant competition with fellow countryman/electric car company NIO.
After all, the company has shown an interest in opening its own battery rental service.
Top Vehicle: XPeng P7
A lot of established car brands are working on EVs
Other Electric Car Brands
A lot of car companies are working on electric/electric hybrid vehicles, in addition to a standard, petrol-based, rollout.
You’d be surprised to learn how many companies are capitalising on the electric car phenomenon right now.
Then again, the writing is on the wall.
Combustion engines will be phased out eventually; it’s only a matter of when.
You might have already seen ads for these vehicles?
It’s hard to avoid brands like Kia, for example, who promote their eco range like crazy on YouTube.
BMW is another one, a brand with a full range of plug-in hybrids in their catalogue.
Plug-in hybrids are only part-carbon natural as they rely on petrol but can run on electric only for a little while.
Plug-in hybrids are an excellent option for long-distance travel for those on the fence, by the way.
Other companies dipping their toes in the electric car market include:
Are the above names better than established electric car companies that deal only in full electric types?
The answer depends on what you’re looking for and what you consider convenient/important.
Price tends to vary regardless, with plug-in hybrids being the cheaper of the two options; score one for team hybrid.
Companies like Volkswagen have publicly stated they intend on adding more electric cars to their line-up.
In other words, they see the potential/opportunity to grow in an eco-friendly market.
Misc. Electric Car Brands
Some electric car brands are a little harder to pin down for some reason or other, compared to others we’ve mentioned.
For example, Aptiv PLC is an auto-parts company that supplies vital pieces, essential pieces, that fit in the electric car puzzle.
They’re not a traditional electric car brand but are integral to the entire operation by association.
Without Aptiv, a majority of electric car startups would suffer.
Major corporation General Motors is another name you’ll see quite often if you spend enough time in the EV space.
General Motors do everything from design vehicles to manufacture them.
Also, they own Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, and GMC — companies who have shown an interest in electrifying their range.
Many would consider them a direct rival to Tesla, similar to NIO, just with a larger reach.
Electric cars will soon be made mandatory in certain countries
Electric Car Brands: The Complete List, From Tesla To NIO
It’s true, the electric car industry is going through a boom at the moment.
The same could be said for other electric markets, only cars steer most of the conversation.
Why is that? Well, electric cars offer better utility and a lot of functionality for what you pay.
Unless you can’t drive, that is.
Low maintenance costs are actually one of the major selling points of buying an electric car generally.
Fewer moving parts under the hood make EVs cheap to keep. Moreover, you pay less to top up your vehicle compared to petrol cars.
The race for carbon neutral is one watched around the globe by governments and experts.
Here are the main benefits of owning an electric car for those interested:
- Electric cars are better for the environment.
- Low maintenance costs make them cheaper in the long run.
- Electric cars are optimised for high performance.
Did we miss any electric car brands?
Let us know on social media, or in the comments below.
In the meantime why not check out our ultimate guide on electric transport to understand the electric world at large.