The COVID-19 pandemic has slowed down sales of electric vehicles in the United States, but we see a bright light at the end of the tunnel as car manufacturers ready their fleet for a greener future defined by lower CO2 emissions.
Platts Analytics reports that sales of plug-in light duty EVs dropped from 331,000 units in 2019 to 296,000 in 2020. The data suggest the EV sector might need a year or two to bounce back, but is projected to finally break the one million mark by 2025. To capitalize on this trend, dozens of manufacturers, from stalwarts like Ford to newcomers like Rivian, are planning new electric cars across a range of budget and target markets.
Let’s take a look at some of the most exciting upcoming electric cars that will hit the roads in 2021 and beyond.
Top new electric cars
- Tesla Cybertruck – late 2021
- Ford F-150 Lightning – 2022
- Tesla Roadster – 2022
- Rivian R1T/R1S – June 2021/August 2021
- NIO ET7 – Q1 2022
- GMC Hummer EV – fall 2021
- Porsche Macan EV – 2023
- BMW i4 – June 2021
- Audi Q4 e-tron – June 2021
- Cadillac Lyriq – Q1 2022
- Mercedes-Benz EQE – second half of 2021
- Lucid Air – second half of 2021
- Nissan Ariya – by end of 2021
- Subaru Solterra – 2022
- Toyota bZ4X – 2022
1. Tesla Cybertruck
The Tesla Cybertruck electric pickup truck is probably the most highly anticipated upcoming EV today. Elon Musk’s car brand touts that its futuristic-looking truck is better than a utility truck and will perform better than a sports car.
Cybertruck boasts of armor glass windows and an ultra-hard, cold-rolled stainless-steel body made of the same material used in SpaceX rockets. Its top-of-the-line tri-motor AWD variant will be able to go from 0-60 mph in less than 2.9 seconds and has an estimated range of more than 500 miles (804 kilometers).
The Tesla Cybertruck specs come with a reasonable tag price, with the entry-level variant at $39,900 and the higher-end models at $49,900 and $69,900. The Tesla Cybertruck release date was originally scheduled for late 2021 for the dual-motor version, while the single motor variant is expected to come in late 2022.
2. Ford F-150 Lightning
Ford has not been quiet about its upcoming all-electric Ford F-150 Lightning. The all-electric version of the popular pickup truck shares its DNA with its petroleum-powered sibling. It sports the F-150 body but drops the V-6 or V-8 powerplant under the hood for a pair of electric motors and battery packs.
The Ford F-150 Lightning with Standard Range battery is estimated to travel 230 miles (370 km) on a single charge. The unit with an Extended-Range battery will have enough juice to go 300 miles (483 km) per charge.
The Ford F-150 Lightning will come standard with all-wheel drive. It will be a 2022 model year and start at $39,974 before potential tax credits are applied.
3. Tesla Roadster
The next-gen Tesla Roadster was first unwrapped in 2017 and is expected to hit production by 2022. EV fans can expect a candidate design drivable by late summer of 2021.
The technology company claims the Tesla Roadster specs will allow it to blast from 0 to 60 mph in 1.9 seconds. When equipped with the SpaceX package that Musk has been mentioning in his tweets, the electric monster will supposedly sprint to 60 mph from a full stop in just 1.1 seconds.
This much-awaited new electric sports car is expected to outperform existing supercars, but it will set you back $200,000. A Founder Series version with a 1,000-unit run sells for $250,000.
4. Rivian R1T and R1S
Amazon-backed startup Rivian is getting its tag team of electric vehicles ready for delivery. Being positioned as adventure vehicles, the R1T will be an all-electric pickup truck while its R1S sibling will be a fully electric SUV.
The 2021 R1T specs put it on a head-on collision course versus the Tesla Cybertruck. Its quad-motor setup will allow it to sprint from 0 to 60 mph in 3 seconds. The R1T will also have a towing capacity of up to 11,000 lbs (4,990 kg) with a payload capacity of 1,760 lbs (798 kg). The Rivian R1T range is expected to hit between 250 and 400 miles on a single charge. The Rivian R1T pickup truck will be out by June 2021 with a Launch Edition that sells for $75,000. A more affordable Explore version will be added to the lineup come January 2022.
Like its green pickup truck brother, the Rivian R1S SUV is compared to its possible competitor, the Tesla Model X. The R1S seven-seater with a range of more than 300 miles will be released first, followed by 250-mile and longer-range versions. The R1S will also have a quad-motor setup and it will clock 3 seconds in a 0 to 60 mph sprint. R1S SUV Launch Edition will roll out in August 2021 with a sticker price of $77,500. There will also be a Launch and Explore edition to follow the initial release.
5. NIO ET7
Chinese electric car manufacturer NIO will unleash its ET7 luxury electric sedan in Q1 2022. The company also recently announced it will bring its vehicles to Norway, and there are signs that it is taking its initial steps to develop its business in the United States.
The NIO ET7 with autonomous driving capabilities will likely elbow it out with contenders such as the Tesla Model S, Lucid Air, and the Mercedes-Benz EQS. Looking at the NIO ET7 specs and estimated performance, it has the potential to snag a decent share of the market. The first model that will be launched will have a battery of 100 kWh that can go as far as 435 miles (700 km) on a single charge. However, the company is teasing a model that will sport a solid state battery and will get a range of 620 miles (998 km), making it one of the coolest upcoming electric cars.
6. GMC Hummer EV
GM goes big in the EV wars with its own duo and a rather strange reimagination of the iconic Hummer brand. Under the GMC umbrella, the carmaker will roll out the Hummer EV Pickup and the Hummer EV SUV.
The Hummer EV Pickup production is set to start in fall of 2021. The electric super truck is expected to crank up to 1,000 HP and have an available torque of up to 11,500 lb-ft. On a single charge, this electric monster is estimated to go more than 350 miles (563 km). If you want the Hummer EV Pickup, it will set you back at least $79,995.
Meanwhile, the Hummer EV SUV is not expected to hit the market until early 2023. The upcoming electric SUV from GMC will be based on its electric pickup truck cousin and will have options for two or three electric motors. Expect up to 850 HP and about the same torque from this beast. The most powerful iteration of the SUV will go from 0 to 60 mph in around 3.5 seconds, roughly just half a second slower than the Hummer EV Pickup.
7. Porsche Macan EV
The new electric version of the Porsche Macan, the best-selling version of the brand, is nearing production and will arrive in 2023. According to the carmaker, the Macan EV will have a longer range than the current Taycan, which has an estimated range of 227 miles (365 km).
The electrified Macan is being jointly developed with Audi and will sit on its PPE platform that’s basically for vehicles with high floors. The Macan EV is slated to go on real-world road testing after months of running simulations.
The pricing for the Porsche Macan is yet to be disclosed, but since this is a Porsche, it is unlikely that it will aim for affordability.
8. BMW i4
Another electric eye-catcher is the BMW i4, set to hit the market in June 2021. The electric motor of this EV with a 530 HP output will be able to whir the car from 0 to 60 mph in 4 seconds flat. On a full battery, the BMW i4 electric sedan will be able to travel up to 300 miles (483 km).
With its luxurious and spacious interior, you can expect a BMW i4 vs. Tesla Model 3 comparison in the near future. Will BMW’s challenger, which is estimated to have a sticker price of around $50,000, steal some market share from Tesla’s mass-produced EV?
9. Audi Q4 e-tron
Audi proclaims the Q4 e-tron to be equal part performance and art, while positioning it as the more affordable EV option from its stable. The all-electric SUV siblings, tagged as the Q4 e-tron and the Q4 e-tron Sportback, will have the same footprint as the Audi Q5 crossover that runs on gasoline.
Powering the Q4 e-tron base model will be a 201 HP electric motor paired with a 77 kWh battery. There will also be a more potent dual-motor setup using a 295 HP motor. The Audi Q4 e-tron has an estimated range of up to 323 miles (520 km) on a single charge. The Audi Q4 e-tron price is yet to be announced, but it’s estimated to be around $45,000.
10. Cadillac Lyriq
The first electric Cadillac is arriving soon, with production in GM’s Tennessee factory set from Q1 of 2022. The upcoming luxury electric SUV will be offered with a single-motor RWD or with a dual-motor AWD setup.
The Cadillac Lyriq‘s range is estimated to hit more than 300 miles (483 km). According to the American car manufacturer, the Lyriq will ride on its scalable battery architecture. The Lyriq price will start at $58,795.
11. Mercedes-Benz EQE
German automaker Mercedes-Benz continues its push toward electrification of its fleet. Mercedes will start the production of the EQE business sedan by the second half of 2021 in Germany and later on in its Beijing factory.
The EQE will be positioned below its larger electric sedan sibling, the EQS. Its powertrain will most likely have a similar output as the EQC’s at around 400 HP and be able to go from 0 to 60 mph in less than 5 seconds. The range of the Mercedes-Benz EQE is estimated to hit more than 200 miles, assuming it also gets the 93.2 kWh battery pack from the EQC400.
12. Lucid Air
The Lucid Air will hit the market by the second half of 2021. Will it blow the EV market away? It promises a good dose of luxury and performance in a lineup that will range from $69,900 for the Air Pure, to $161,500 for the Lucid Air Dream Edition.
The entry-level Lucid Air will sport one electric motor, while the rest of the brood will use a dual-motor AWD configuration. The fastest version of the new electric sedan will have a top speed of 168 mph (270 kph). The Air Grand Touring model has an estimated range of 517 miles (832 km) on a single charge.
13. Nissan Ariya
The Nissan Ariya electric SUV is expected to hit the US market before the end of 2021. The Japanese carmaker is setting it up to compete with Tesla’s Model Y. The Ariya has an estimated starting tag price of $40,000.
The Ariya electric crossover aims to be a better deal than its Nissan Leaf cousin. Aside from the more premium design and built, it will have a longer range of 300 miles (482 km).
14. Subaru Solterra
The Subaru Solterra EV is expected to arrive in the US and other markets in 2022. Subaru developed the all-electric compact crossover in collaboration with Toyota. As a result, it will most likely use a platform that’s similar to Toyota’s bZ4X concept.
Details about this vehicle are still very limited, but we will update you as soon as we learn more about it.
15. Toyota bZ4X
Toyota recently announced its bZ line of battery electric vehicles, and unveiled the Toyota bZ4X concept during the Auto Shanghai event in April.
The bZ4X was co-developed with Subaru and is expected to hit showrooms by 2022. It will most likely compete with the likes of the Tesla Model Y, Hyundai Kona Electric, and the Kia Niro EV, so its tag price might hit the $40,000 mark.
This completes our roundup of the most exciting new electric cars that are hitting the roads soon. So which one is your favorite?