Do all EVs drive the same? It’s a question we’re asked regularly, and as I’ve just spent the last week testing 16 electric cars back-to-back for our EV Buyer’s Guide, it’s a question worth commenting on. For I feel good.
The short answer is no, they don’t. As you’d expect from Australia’s first electric dual-cab ute, the gap between LDV eT60and lower slung, more powerful and focused on the driver Porsche Tycoon.
In saying that, though, there are undoubtedly similarities. Take, for example, our fleet of 16 electric cars that make up our Magnetist. They span price points, body styles and performance levels, and yet if you put me blindfolded in the passenger seat, I think I’d be hard-pressed to tell you which car was in which. .
I’d eventually get there when I’d had time to soak up how it rode, how the seats felt and the level of refinement on offer but for the first few hundred metres, there was a big question mark hanging over me. The head
All normal indications are gone. There’s no exhaust note, no vibration and none of the tell-tale signs we usually rely on to know “well, it’s a straight-six petrol smooth purr so it must be a BMW”.
There’s no famous straight six under the BMW i4’s bonnet…
In a combustion-powered car, the engine is the heart and soul.
There are almost endless ways to change the character of a combustion engine: cylinder count, displacement, layout, forced induction, rev range, fuel type… the list goes on.
Even the type of gearbox – torque converter auto, manual, dual clutch – adds to the flavor. But again, this is another area that most electric cars have in common.
Put the power away in an electric car and the experience is the same in all of them. You get instant response, easy acceleration and uninterrupted development. All good things, but there’s not much about them that feels unique.
That means the usual underpinnings that brands have relied on to distinguish themselves for decades – BMW with its silky straight sixes, Porsche with its offbeat boxer growl – will soon no longer apply. In the future, the key battleground for brands to win the hearts and minds of potential buyers will no longer be the power plant. As for what will replace it? That’s exactly what the world’s automakers are currently trying to figure out…
The Mercedes-AMG EQE 53 is a missile thanks to 505kW/1000Nm. The new ‘AMG Performance Sound’ function makes it sound like a spaceship.
The usual foundations that brands have relied on to distinguish themselves for decades – BMW with its silky straight sixes, Porsche with its offbeat boxer growl – will soon no longer apply.
Perhaps the most interesting front is sound. Piping a fake exhaust track through car speakers is nothing new – anyone else remember when Renault gave you the option to make the Clio sound like a Nissan GT-R? – but it’s an area where brands are starting to go in new and exciting directions.
AMG fits something called “AMG Performance Sound” into its sportier EVs, which mostly makes them sound like angry spaceships, while BMW enlists legendary composer Hans Zimmer to create the audio signature of its electric models. It means switching on An i7 A burst of noise that makes you feel like you’re in an important movie scene mound, But there is no denying that it is distinctive.
And it’s not just high-end automakers that are using voice to create personality and connection. gave BYD Atto 3 Also makes some weird and wonderful noises and one of the weirdest experiences I encountered EV is the biggest I was driving through a deserted multi-level carpark late at night when the BYD played an eerie, pulse-like soundtrack to make sure I didn’t squash any unsuspecting pedestrians.
Different approaches to recovery are just one way automakers can add flavor to a car’s dynamics.
Dynamically speaking, region breaking is another domain that gives rise to different approaches.
Some brands, like Porsche, mostly skip it all together while others are opting for one-pedal driving with varying levels of success. For example, Merc’s strongest D-configuration is incredibly powerful and remarkable.
Design is where the most obvious opportunity to reinvent brand identity lies. Electric vehicles open up a whole new realm of possibilities for creating unique proportions and shapes – although so far, most brands have been playing it safe. Expect for Hyundai, that is. the clock An Ioniq 5 Or the Ioniq 6 There is no mistaking the metal and the brand they come from.
so, what Do all EVs feel the same?
Just judge them by their powertrains and there’s no denying that things are starting to come together.
But don’t worry we are approaching a sea of sameness. There are many other parameters waiting to be explored…