Skip advert
Advertisement
Opinion

'Like Tesla with hindsight, Nio could make big waves in the UK'

Editor-in-chief Steve Fowler thinks Nio is a brand that could really shake up the premium elite

Opinion - Nio

I came away from the Shanghai motor show in April with one brand in particular sticking in my mind: Nio. This Chinese start-up seemed to blend the best of east and west, taking clear learnings from those entering the electric car space before it, especially Tesla.

Like the American firm, Nio has a young, charismatic leader – William Li – whom the brand’s fans worship and whoop at. In spite of being a much newer company, it already has a bigger range of cars than Tesla. But software is at its heart, while technology – including self-driving systems – is also very much to the fore.

The Chinese company, too, has a unique answer to the charging barriers every other car maker faces. Where Tesla has its Supercharging network, Nio has a host of battery-swap stations – 1,700 of them in its Chinese home market, while they’re spreading across Europe and coming to the UK as of next year, too.

Advertisement - Article continues below

But where Tesla exists alongside its loyal fans, Nio welcomes them into the fold. The way it has curated the community that it has around it – be that with owners or fans – is hugely impressive. Its motor show stand in Shanghai was staffed by those very people. And as Nio design chief Kris Tomasson told me this week, “Our priorities are shaped by our users’ behaviour. And owners can ask Nomi [Nio’s innovative in-car personal assistant] to send us feedback – and we always listen.”

The result is a car company that thinks differently and, in the EL6, has produced a model that’s certainly better built than a Tesla and drives better, too.

Only last week I was talking to someone from one of the big three German premium brands about the future of the UK market. They were asking me about Polestar and saying how much of a threat it is already becoming, especially with the 3 and 4 around the corner. I told them to look not only at Polestar, but also beyond. For me, Nio is a brand that could really shake up the premium elite.

Do you agree with Steve? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section...

Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement

Recommended

New Nio EL8 electric SUV is a luxury six-seat alternative to the BMW iX
NIO EL8 front 3/4
News

New Nio EL8 electric SUV is a luxury six-seat alternative to the BMW iX

This is an EV over five-metres-long that can do 0-62mph in 4.1 seconds and 317 miles on a single charge
14 Jun 2024
10 surprising things made by car companies, that aren't cars
Things made by car manufacturers - header
Features

10 surprising things made by car companies, that aren't cars

The world’s biggest auto manufacturers have many strings to their bows...
6 May 2024
Geely and NIO agreement could see battery swapping tech on Volvo, Polestar and Lotus cars
Volvo EX30 - front action
News

Geely and NIO agreement could see battery swapping tech on Volvo, Polestar and Lotus cars

The Chinese giant behind Volvo, Polestar and Lotus will join forces with NIO on battery tech
30 Nov 2023
New Nio ET5 to make UK public debut at Goodwood Festival of Speed
NIO ET5 - front
News

New Nio ET5 to make UK public debut at Goodwood Festival of Speed

The all-electric Nio ET5 comes with up to 366 miles of range
6 Jul 2023

Most Popular

Ford Explorer review
Ford Explorer 2024 - front
In-depth reviews

Ford Explorer review

Ford’s long-awaited electric SUV drives well, has some neat touches and impresses for efficiency
18 Jun 2024
New Nissan Leaf is an SUV! 2025 model gets advanced tech and concept car looks
Nissan Leaf exclusive image
News

New Nissan Leaf is an SUV! 2025 model gets advanced tech and concept car looks

The next-generation Nissan Leaf will transform into an SUV inspired by the Chill-Out concept and our exclusive image previews how it could look
16 Jun 2024
No more EV! New BMW X3 gets petrol, diesel and PHEV power only
BMW X3 - front
News

No more EV! New BMW X3 gets petrol, diesel and PHEV power only

The all-new premium BMW X3 SUV has a sharp new look and cutting-edge tech, but no iX3 EV this time around
18 Jun 2024