5 International Electric Cars You Can’t Buy in the US

Electric vehicles were once rare sights on public roads, but today they are everywhere. Tesla is no longer considered a rare car brand, and most major automakers have either released an EV or are in development.

However, some EVs are still considered forbidden fruit in the US market. Notably, NIO is an automaker that has yet to market any models in the United States. However, NIO is not alone, as a number of automakers have EVs that cater exclusively to international markets.

1. NIO ET7

The NIO ET7 is an attractive luxury sedan that looks a lot like the Tesla Model S. The front end, devoid of the traditional grille, is particularly reminiscent of Tesla. The front end, completely devoid of the traditional grille, is particularly reminiscent of a Tesla sedan, but overall the NIO actually looks better than the Model S.

Tesla is starting to show its age, but NIO has a high-tech and fresh look. One odd thing about NIO’s styling is the integration of what NIO calls “self-driving sensor units” on the car’s roof, just above the windshield.

Some people might like those futuristic overhangs, but it looks half-baked and makes the car look like a self-driving taxi. The rest of the car is gorgeous with flowing lines that put a Tesla to shame.

The Nio has also designed a great interior that includes a fun personal assistant that talks to the driver. Its infotainment system is pure Tesla copy, especially the climate control. The only downside to this electric supercar is that it won’t be available in the US.

2. Honda e

The Honda e looks like a small Rivian Amazon Delivery van, which means it has a very nice front end. In fact, the entire design of the car is extremely attractive and well thought out. It’s a city car, which means the 137-mile range isn’t anything to brag about, but it’s perfect for short distances.

The interior is also tasteful and futuristic, especially the dedicated screens for each rear camera. One of the Honda e’s nicest touches is the placement of cameras that replace each rearview mirror. This gives the exterior an ultra-sleek and modern look.

The Honda e is not sold in the US, and with its limited range, it will probably never be offered. But for markets that value city cars, this car has a lot of appeal.

3. Mercedes-Benz EQA

Image credit: Mercedes-Benz

Mercedes makes some of the best electric SUVs on the market, and the EQA is no exception. It’s the entry-level offering in the Mercedes EQ range of electric cars, and it’s amazing. Its appearance is more attractive than the boring EQS sedan, as well as its EQS SUV counterpart. Because the EQA is smaller, it looks sportier by default.

The EQA’s interior is absolutely stunning, with blue accents throughout the cabin making it clear to the world that you’re buying an electric Mercedes-Benz. The interior of this EQ line car is simpler than the flagship EQS line models, which is a good thing for people who don’t want a huge Hyperscreen.

The EQA is an excellent candidate for the American market, especially since the gas-powered GLA is already on sale in the US and selling very well. Basically, anything with an SUV form factor and premium badge will sell well in the US market. As more and more EVs are released by various manufacturers, it will be interesting to see if SUVs will continue to dominate the electric vehicle sector.

4. NIO ES8

ES8 is another great NIO product that is not available in the US. This is a special NIO SUV and a very nice SUV. The interior is typical NIO, which is to say excellent, and there’s also the clever (but slightly odd) NOMI personal assistant.

If you ask, NOMI performs several tasks, but the most striking feature is the personal assistant’s lively appearance, especially the way it playfully interacts with the driver. For now, NOMI may just be a gimmick. However, it has many features and it definitely looks like the future of in-car personal assistants.

It certainly beats traditional voice-activated personal assistants that sound boring and robotic. The ES8 also seats six in comfort, as well as NIO’s biggest innovation, a battery swap. Whether or not this system will ever replace fast chargers is up for debate, but battery swapping definitely has its place, especially if you need to top it up right away.

NIO has designed the whole experience to be seamless, though, and the range is excellent, rated at 360 miles, so range anxiety shouldn’t be a concern. NIO has some great cars that definitely look ready to hit the US market, and once they decide to release their great EV, the competition will definitely be on their toes.

5. VW ID.3

vw-ID.3
Image credit: Volkswagen UK

Volkswagen is definitely on top with its electric cars. VW’s EV lineup in the US includes the amazing ID.4, but no amazing ID.3.

The ID.3 is one of the best-looking EVs of all time, and it’s no surprise, as its styling is very Golf-esque. If you want a car design that will stand the test of time and continue to look fresh, the VW Golf is a great design to emulate.

The ID.3 may look like a Golf, but it’s definitely an electric car. The exterior has the typical softness of electric cars, while the rear looks menacing with its black trim. Inside, the ID.3 looks a lot like an electric car, especially with the obligatory white surfaces.

Tesla also offers gorgeous white interiors, but it’s worth considering how hard it is to keep them clean before they sink. Range is also very good, thanks to a 58kWh battery that can deliver around 265 miles on a single charge.

The ID.3 isn’t necessarily the kind of car that will be ultra-popular in the US, but VW should still consider bringing it over as an electric alternative for Golf enthusiasts.

There is room for more models in the US EV market

Electric vehicles are the biggest fad in the automotive segment, and a more diverse range of vehicles in the US can only benefit the consumer. Right now, there are some great electric cars on sale in the US, but some of the best electric cars in the world aren’t offered there.

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