Exploring The Most Exciting Electric Concept Cars Out There
You can get a pretty good idea of where EVs are heading when looking at concept cars.
New concept cars/preliminary images aren’t that hard to find either.
Big car brands share these images with the public all the time — mostly via social media. And then there are major events that take place across the globe which are notorious for future showcases.
We’ve seen a rising number of concept cars/projects announced in recent months.
The IB.3 convertible and Arrival’s proposed lineup looks very promising. The latter is changing the way typical vehicles look drastically (more on these vehicles later).
That’s the thing with electric concepts; they’re constantly innovating, be it visually or internally; exciting stuff for anyone with interest in the rising EV market.
Today we’ll be looking at electric concept cars coming to a road near you soon and those you’ll never see in person.
We’ll also be highlighting some of our personal favourite concepts yet to receive a concrete release date.
The Best Electric Car Concepts
The future is looking bright — and when we say future, we’re talking about the next couple of years, not 10 to 20 years down the line.
Governments across the world are squeezing tight on EVs. Countries like the UK and US have already made it known that they’re looking to make significant changes if they’re to hit decarbonised targets.
The transport sector is one of the leading contributors of emissions in key areas; it’s why you’re hearing more about electric vehicles and why we’re seeing some crazy concept cars announced.
Demand for these vehicles is about to increase across the board.
It’s a good time to be a designer of these vehicles as there’s no set outline for these vehicles yet. Furthermore, electric cars are performance workhorses, giving designers a lot of room to play with during the brainstorming process.
How else could you explain Tesla’s upcoming Cybertruck?
Below you’ll find a mix of electric concept cars with set release dates and those that will never get made, but have to be mentioned, regardless.
Every one of these vehicles challenges the status quo in some way or another, and we’re all for it.
© Credit to Heatherwick Studio
AIRO: The Home Away From Home
Maker: Heatherwick Studio/IM Motors
Release Date: TBA
Arguably the coolest electric concept car we’ve ever seen. AIRO is part vehicle, part home, giving owners the ability to switch between the two with ease.
That’s right, this self-driving vehicle has multiple interior modes fitting for different occasions. Have friends over? Move a few panels around to erect a dining table. Feeling tired? Flick a few buttons, and a double bed will appear.
And that’s not even the best part.
AIRO acts as a road-sweeper of sorts, only it cleans the air as it moves, not the ground.
How does it do this?
Simple, the HEPA filtration system takes polluted air and recycles it, redistributing even.
“As a new room for our lives, with a changing view, AiIRO is a car intended to transport us to a cleaner and better future,” says Thomas Heatherwick, the founder of UK architect Heatherwick Studio, the team behind AIRO.
Heatherwick Studio has created this concept for Chinese car manufacturer IM Motors. The AIRO vehicle itself was announced earlier this year at the Shanghai Motor Show.
We’re yet to hear of a release date of the AIRO; all we know is IM Motors hopes to drive into production as early as 2023.
© Credit to Tesla
Cybertruck: A Stylised Future
Release Date: 2021 (US)
It created a buzz across the world when announced, and we knew we had to bring it up when talking about electric concept cars/vehicles.
The Tesla Cybertruck is a vehicle ripped straight from the future and handed to us in the present. It looks sharp to the touch and is capable of travelling over 500 miles on a single charge, according to Tesla.
It might take some getting used to when it’s road-ready, but there’s no denying the Cybertruck’s appeal. After all, it is said tow up to 6,350kg, rivalling multiple pickups currently on the market.
Memes aside, it’s actually a pretty appealing vehicle that could influence a wave of similar concept cars to make an appearance soon.
So, when does the Cybertruck come out?
The US will be the first to get a taste of this EV as it’s expected to release later this year. Other countries will have to wait a little while longer.
Pre-orders for the Tesla Cybertruck has defied expectations despite the broken window fiasco (sorry Elon) at the Tesla Design Studio event back in 2019 when it was announced.
Even the signature font used for this electric truck is stylised as hell.
© Credit to Lotus
Lotus Evija: The Hypercar of Tomorrow
Release Date: 2021
Not even Lotus could avoid the power of electric vehicles with their Evija hypercar concept.
As you can imagine, this is an electric car that packs a lot of punch as a vehicle that fits that sports archetype.
It, reportedly, has 2000bhp, meaning it has unbelievable torque/acceleration — then again, what did you expect from a company like Lotus?
The Evija has been described as “a car like no other” by CEO Phil Popham. Design-wise, the Lotus Evija is inspired by Formula 1 and Le Mans racing cars, only it retains the signature Lotus feel.
In terms of speed, the Evija can go from 0 to 60mph in under three seconds, with a top speed of over 200mph.
Take a guess at how much this electric car is worth, then double it. The Lotus Evija has a price tag of £2 million.
Only 130 of these concept cars will be built. Why? Because they’re reserved for elite-level drivers who can afford such rides. Lotus has pushed the release of the Evija back a few times due to setbacks caused by the current pandemic.
Electric concept cars like the Lotus Evija won’t be for everyone. Yet, it doesn’t stop us from imagining ourselves owning one.
© Credit to Arrival
Arrival’s Ride Hailing Concept: The Ultimate Ride Hailing Vehicle
Release Date: TBA
Arrival is a company every avid EV fan should follow. This UK startup is behind some of the finest commercial vehicles out there.
The upcoming Arrival Car caters to ride-hailing directly, giving drivers another option should they look to delve into the eco-friendly space.
Uber — yes, that Uber — is acting as an advisor to this project, steering Arrival in the right direction. Furthermore, Uber drivers have been invited to join the process to ensure that their needs are met above all else.
The Arrival Car has an exciting look, with an interior resembling the inside of a limo. In fact, the backseat is more of a long bench, complete with lighted cubbies and handrails.
You’ll no doubt form your own comparisons; after all, the large screen found on the dashboard does resemble those found in Tesla vehicles and other high-end EVs.
Production on the Arrival Car is set to begin by 2023. Uber will have dibs if they’d like to get involved on a deeper level.
We know we’re talking about concept cars exclusively here, but we should talk about the announced Arrival bus too.
Many countries have sought the help of Arrival, with more to come judging by their status.
© Credit to Jaguar Land Rover
Jaguar Land Rover’s Project Vector Concept Platform: Urban Travel Reimagined
Maker: Jaguar Land Rover
Release Date TBA
Ever wondered what it might be like driving around in a literal box on wheels?
Check out one of the weirdest concept cars out there in the Project Vector Concept Platform. In fact, this EV is a lot more cube-like than Tesla’s Cybertruck, which is really saying something.
An EV concept such as this acts more like a tech demo than a practical option for buyers (should it ever receive an official launch, that is).
Project Vector is self-driving ready, and it shows.
“Future urban travel will be a composite of owned and shared vehicles, access to ride-hailing and on-demand services, as well as public transport,” says Dr Tim Leverton, project director.
“Our vision shows the vehicle as a flexible part of the urban mobility network that can be adapted for different purposes.”
© Credit to Volkswagen
ID.3 Convertible: The Top Down of Your Dreams
Release Date: N/A
Now, there is a Volkswagen ID.4 coming — an all-electric SUV that looks very promising. Still, we’re talking about concept cars here, so we’d like to divert your attention to the ID.3 convertible.
You see, Volkswagen shared renderings of a convertible version of the ID.3 hatchback, and it actually surprised us.
Renderings of an open-top ID.3 were shared on social media, asking users to give their opinions on the EV. Many have interpreted the question as rhetorical, only we’re remaining optimistic.
There aren’t many drop-top EVs out right now, so seeing the ID.3 convertible concept did put a massive smile on our faces.
For now, all we have are these images; VW has yet to confirm anything more.
What do you think? Would you buy this version of the ID.3?
If you’d like to learn more about the ID.3 convertible, check out our guide on eco-friendly convertibles and when you can expect to see more of them.
Understanding Electric Concept Cars
Most believe that every concept image they see is bound to see a release at some point in the future, which isn’t always the case.
The majority of concept cars you see/hear about are drawn up simply for the fun of it, giving spectators a chance to imagine new ideas/possibilities.
For example, we’re pretty sure we’ve seen a few flying concept cars floating about the internet, despite them being nye on impossible at this stage due to the weight of the battery/engine.
Another example would be the aforementioned Airo concept from Heatherwick Studio. This EV doubles up as a home for a small family thanks to interchangeable compartments that can turn the interior into a bed and dining space.
An electric car like this could only exist as a concept at this point in time; whether it actually comes to fruition or not depends on costs and time.
Many electric startups have impressed us with their concept cars, only to run out of money before releasing a single-vehicle — we’re looking at you, Faraday Future.
Moreover, the Airo is an autonomous vehicle, and self-driving cars have a long way to go before they replace human drivers.
So, which electric concept cars will get made then?
In our experience, it’s better to bank on established car brands than promising young startups. Yes, the ideas of most reputable names are somewhat bland in comparison, but you can’t deny the appeal.
In fact, some car brands like Volkswagen design concept cars to test the waters, so to speak, to gauge public reaction.
Do Electric Car Concepts Change At All?
Yes, the majority of electric car concepts you see change as time goes on. However, the integrity of the original version is kept to some degree.
Remember, concepts are always subject to change as companies cut costs/workaround problems once vehicles enter the following stages of development.
The original Renault E-Tech Megane concept is slightly different to the updated version we’ve seen recently. Its suspension has been raised, and the chunky alloy wheels from the original are out, replaced by a cost-effective alternative.
Automakers hold nothing back when it comes to electric car concepts, but they need to be practical once it’s time to look at costs/logistics.
You’ll rarely come across an EV that is identical to its preliminary images/concept.
Why Come Out With Concept Cars At All?
Innovation is the reason; it always was.
To advance technology, you need to try something a little different; to reinvent the wheel (literally in the case of EVs).
Innovation requires experimentation at times, be it from a physical standpoint or from an internal perspective. Concept cars are simply the first step in reshaping transport, not to mention public opinion surrounding these types of rides.
To use an example: the Cybertruck might be an eyesore to some at first, but they’ll grow to treat them like any other vehicle in time.
And because it’s fun to play around with an off-the-beaten-path idea, let’s not forget that.
If car brands — electric or otherwise — stuck to the same designs, then we’d all be driving the same car, and your options would be minimal.
Wrapping Up: Exploring The Most Exciting Electric Concept Cars Out There
We can guarantee that the number of crazy-looking electric car concepts will triple in the coming years — maybe even quadruple.
Vehicles like the Cybertruck and AIRO concept will only encourage new ideas/images to pop up.
However, whether they make it to market is another question entirely.
Who knows, maybe car brands are willing to take more chances when it comes to concept cars in the future when EVs begin to overshadow standard petrol/diesel types.
Was our exploration into some of the most out-there concept cars entertaining at all? We hope so. Tell us your favourite on social media.