The Reason Early EVs Were Ugly; and Why They’re Not Now

I’ve just finished reading Charles Morris’s fascinating book about Tesla. It’s quite an eye opener in many ways. Surely not many people would (or could!) front up $41 million of their own money to help their startup through a sticky patch – but the way Morris tells the story, this gesture made a defining moment that won the confidence of some serious backers. Fair Play to Elon Musk!
My last post suggested that unfeasibly good looking EVs are needed to help the electric revolution succeed. Morris’s book provides an idea as to why earlier EVs tended to be either incredibly bland or just plain ugly: the manufacturers were not really interested in selling them. Apparently California law obliged them to include an EV in their product ranges, and they grudgingly complied although they had very little desire to supply or support them.
Thankfully that’s changing, and now there are some really eye-catching electric cars for us to look at and maybe even aspire to own. A few broke cover at the recent Geneva auto show, including the Quant concept vehicles as reported by (it’s that man again) Charles Morris in Charged EVs.
There is also the Koenigsegg Regera. Perhaps that’s outside the scope of this blog, as it’s not strictly “solid-state” motoring: the twin-turbo 5.0 litre V8 sees to that. But it does have three Yasa electric motors. Yasa motors also power the Delta E4-Coupe, a pure EV built by Delta Motorsport at Silverstone that has functioned as a demonstrator for various technologies including wireless charging as I described in my article in New Electronics last year. In fact, Delta helped develop the Yasa motor to power the E4-Coupe. I think this is a great looking car.

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I love the doors; and the nose; and I’d like to be sitting behind that steering wheel.

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Hopefully we’ll be seeing many more fantastic electric shapes, not only gracing motor show stands, but the roads as well.

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