It was fun to read recently in Car Dealer Magazine and several other publications about a study that looked into the public perception of EVs.
The key quote for me is “…motorists are being asked to make huge compromises on aesthetics…”
Tesla (and to a degree Renault, Nissan and Chevrolet) make good “normal” looking cars that happen to be electric but the rest of the industry seem to forget to invite their best designers to join in when the EV prototypes are being drawn up.
An obvious example is the BMW i3. Sure, it is not the worst looking car on the road by a long shot, but neither does it fit people’s expectations the way most other BMWs do. I used to own a 2009 X5 and found its lines spectacular. BMW are great designers and engineers, but the i3 (and even the i8) are not their best attempts.
At the same time as they were designing the i3 they were also designing the X4. Is there any real reason the i3 couldn’t look more like the X4 and the rest of the family? Perhaps that was what was intended. To expel it from the group.
Lets compare these two BMW twins born in 2013…the i3 and the X4:
Its not a question of which one is nicer but that the i3 just looks totally different from any other BMW. Maybe more buyers would prefer the more traditional X4 look (or maybe everyone is actually tired of the BMW style and its the X4 designers that have made the mistake), but it is just a shame that choosing an EV drive train means choosing an aesthetic that is different and that may not appeal.
Diesels don’t look different from petrol engined cars, right?
And don’t get me started on the crazy rear suicide doors…. 🙂