Electric Car Brands
There aren’t too many purely electric car manufacturers in the world, as this type of cars has been introduced to the public on mass scale only this century. There have long been hybrid cars, but the exclusively battery-powered cars are still very much an oddity. Regardless, the market has already been formed, and it’s now mostly dominated by the Chinese and Tesla.
Founded: July 1, 2003
Founder: Elon Musk, JB Straubel, Martin Eberhard, Marc Tarpenning, Ian Wright
Headquarters: Palo Alto, California, United States
Owner: Elon Musk (20.8%)
The first all-electric car created by Tesla was a 2012 Tesla S model, which was the first in the series of innovative models that gradually climbed their way to being a real possible substitute to the everyday diesel cars. For instance, in 2020 the company has sold around 450.000 electric cars.
Headquarters: Gothenburg, Sweden
Parent organization: Geely
Owner: Volvo Cars
Polestar is a Volvo subsidiary tasked with the creation of all-electric high-performance cars in 2017. By the 2020 they’ve accomplished this mission of their and created a Polestar 2 – a purely electric powerful car that can be bought even now. Polestar remains the one of the few major European brands of electric cars.
Founder: Nicolas Hayek
Headquarters: Böblingen, Germany
Parent organization: Daimler AG
Owners: Mercedes-Benz AG
Smart had the similar fate as Polestar. They were previously making micro-cars for Mercedes, but were reoriented to build electric cars of the same class in 2008. They continue building the diesel models, but the gradually walk away from them in favor of their recent Fortwo and Forfour all-electric autos.
Founder: Mate Rimac
Headquarters: Sveta Nedelja, Zagreb County, Croatia
Rimac is one of the few manufacturers in the world that dared to combine sports cars with fully electric batteries, which they worked to a very good effect, resulting in several cars that were both very powerful and very friendly to environment. Geographically, they are Croatian, which is pretty surprising – this country never had a proper car industry.
Founded: November 2014
Founder: William Li
Headquarters: Shanghai, China
There are many Chinese electric car producers of different calibers, but NIO is oldest and probably the most serious of them. They’ve been around since 2014, and by 2016 they launched their first electric car – a sports model called EP9. Right now, there are four models in production and several more in development.
Founder: He Xiaopeng, Xia Heng, He Tao, Yang Chunlei
Headquarters: Guangzhou, China
XPeng was started around the same time as NIO, but they are much less successful at making cars. Nonetheless, they’ve already created two fully battery-charged cars: one SUV and one sedan. They can be bought right now, although Xpeng is more focused on the Chinese market than anything else.
This brand is a lot fresher, only surfacing in year 2017. Naturally, they’ve only now managed to create one car, an Aiways U5 – a compact CUV with a very peculiar and futuristic design. However, if there was some home of acquiring Xpend outside of China, Aiways is almost exclusively for home market.
Founded: July 2019
Founder: Ding Lei
Headquarters: Shanghai, China
In 2019, HiPhi, a subsidiary under a Shanghai company Human Horizons, has been announced hand-in-hand with their crossover HiPhi X. This model is naturally an all-electric, but you can only physically buy it in its place of origin, Shanghai.
Founder: Hu Xiaoming
Headquarters: Jinhua, Zhejiang, China
Subsidiaries: Zhejiang Kandi Electric Vehicles (50%), SC Autosports LLC
Kandi is a lot more successful company than some of their colleagues above. They are also from Shanghai and have been around for longer – long enough to create three distinct all-electric cars and a minivan. These, however, are definitely only for Chinese market.