We’re getting ready for an onslaught of EV launches and pretty soon we’re going to be spoiled for choice when it comes to the electric vehicle on our drive. We’ll look back on the day when we could have a Tesla or a, ummm, Tesla, and laugh.
But even though the US is the biggest market for EVs, there are still lots of them around the world that you just can’t buy here. Now, to be fair, we wouldn’t want most of them. A lot of EVs that aren’t imported are low-cost efforts for developing nations. Some of them, though, are amazing.
Here are 11 of the best, quirkiest and plain interesting EVs that you can’t buy in America, but you wish you could.
This stylish five-door city car could be a real threat to the likes of the Smart Forfour Electric and even the Nissan Leaf. It’s the best-selling EV of all time in France and it only launched in 2012.
It has also topped the charts as the best-selling EV in Europe for the past two years and in 2016 it was the eight best-selling EV in the world.
In September 2016, Renault introduced a 41kWh battery pack that gave the car a 250-mile range, but that’s on the European cycle and even Renault claims 190 miles in real world conditions. The EPA would give the Zoe a rating of around 150 miles.
It comes with a 66kW (89bhp) motor that produces 162lb/ft of torque. It gets to 60mph in 13.2s and tops out at 84mph. So, technically, it makes you wonder why the rest of the world is going so nuts for this thing.
But it’s a city car and it compensates for the lack of range with an affordable sticker price. It also looks good, drives like a relatively normal car and comes with the Renault badge that gives it credibility in Europe.
It’s also the major obstacle to this car ever making it to the US. Renault left American soil with its tail between its legs in the 60s after a woeful time trying to sell the Dauphine and Renault 10 to a country that loved Oldsmobiles and Crown Imperials.
Now Renault and Nissan are part of the same group, Nissan is firmly established in the US and there’s just no chance of Renault coming back. So you’ll have to wait for the Leaf and you’ll never be able to buy the French city car with the girl’s name.