I just watched the 80-minute NIO EL6 and ET5 Touring unveiling presentation for Europe so that you don’t have to (at 1.5× speed). It’s a nice video if you want to really see these vehicles well and everything they offer, but it’s also a bit slow and long, so I pulled out features that I consider to be highlights that help to set the EL6 apart from its competition in Europe.
I’m starting with highlights from Sia Lai’s portion of the presentation. She’s the lead interior designer, and it was during her presentation that my ears finally perked up. After discussing several other cool factors, but nothing particularly special in my eyes, she came to the seats. That’s where I’ll start, with the NIO Premium Seat Platform — “the seat platform developed by NIO to create the ultimate comfort for you.”
1. Air cushion massage option: “The front seats come standard with the Air Cushion system. It can gently massage your back by inflating and deflating its three air pads, reducing your fatigue from a long trip.” Say what? I love this — it looks like an ideal gentle massage option. But if that’s not good enough for you …
2. 8-point Shiatsu massage: I you need a stronger massage, you’ve got that too! “The optional spa-level 8-point Shiatsu massage provides 5 modes and 2 levels of strength for you to choose from.” Yes, please. “The massage supports OTA updates, constantly improving comfort.” Whatever that means, but sure.
3. Lounge Seat: The front passenger should really get to relax in a car, and NIO offers that for real for once. Aside from reclining, it offers adjustable leg support and a footrest (of sorts). That’s sweet. Now we’re really seeing why the NIO EL6 is priced significantly above the Tesla Model Y — or at least why you can justify paying more for it. Overall, you can adjust the Lounge Seat in 22 different ways.
4. Class-leading space in the back: Back seats are often nothing to write home about, unless you want to complain. “The NIO EL6 “has the widest sitting space and the largest head and leg room for the rear row in its class.” You also have 8-degree power-adjustable backrests on the left and right!
5. PanoCinema: “The EL6 is also a mobile media room,” Ted Li, Head of Product Experience, says later in the presentation. “NIO’s PanoCinema takes immersive audio and display experience to the next level, the 7.1.4 surround system, featuring 23 speakers and Dolby Atmos, enveloping all occupants in its vivid sound, transforming the car into a concert hall on wheels.” Well, I’m not sure about that (a concert hall is a concert hall), but it sounds nice.
6. NIO Air AR Glasses: Okay, I’ll be honest — I have no interest in these. However, they are unique and notable, so I’m noting them. “Later this year, we will introduce NIO Air AR Glasses to Europe. It is co-designed by NIO and the leading AR brand Nreal.” (Maybe this is part of the reason NIO’s cars cost a pretty penny/euro cent. “These googles give you a comparable experience of watching 3D films on a 201-in display.” Yeah … no thanks. But it’s a unique offering.
There’s also spatial stabilization software at play and Ted says, “Your EL6 is your exclusive cinema, with an immersive experience unmatched by any physical screen.” There are also three scents that can be deployed and ambient lighting, of course. It’s something.
7. NOMI Mate: This “in-car AI companion” is a bit special. It can handle more than 200 commands, which NIO says is more than any other on the market. It also knows your precise location, which may help with some commands or if, say, NIO has a grand plan to take over the world with AI and it needs to take control of its robots. Lastly, there are 4 microphones for NOMI in the car, which allows the system to recognize who is speaking to it, in case that matters for an AC/heating adjustment request or some other independent command.
NIO also offers 16+ battery swap stations in Europe, and there were many features I skipped over, including top-notch driver-assist tech and features.
You can buy the EL6 completely outright, you can buy the car but lease the battery, or you can “subscribe” and just have monthly payments for the EL6. Take your pick and enjoy!
If you do buy an EL6 in Europe, reach out and let us know so that we can get a genuine real-world take on the new electric SUV when it arrives later this year.
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