NIO ET7 Review: A Wild Gentleman

NIO ET7 Review: A Wild Gentleman


The NIO ET7 features an elongated silhouette with a fastback design reminiscent of the RS7, stretching over 5.1 meters in length, slightly longer than its counterpart. Its rear showcases a full-width taillight with a hint of wing-like flares at the edges, adding to its dynamic appearance. The front is more subdued due to the absence of a grille, which is typical for electric vehicles, resulting in a more restrained and business-like demeanor compared to the RS7. Its split-headlight design contributes to a more refined look.


Inside, the ET7 boasts a spacious and comfortable interior with ambient lighting creating a cocoon-like cabin exuding a technological vibe. The use of renewable rattan wood, extensive premium soft-touch materials, and a Microfiber headliner convey luxury and simplicity, reminiscent of a finely decorated European home. Hidden air vents have become a modern automotive staple. Despite its minimalist design, the ET7 is user-friendly with essential controls being physical buttons, including gear selection and window operations. The steering wheel might obscure some views, but this is compensated for by a head-up display (HUD). The only downside mentioned is the shallow cup holders without a securing mechanism, which could cause small cans to wobble.


The ET7 offers best-in-class lateral and legroom, though the seat cushions are noted as short. The front seats feature 14-direction electric adjustments with an added comfort layer. The rear boasts innovative back-relaxing massage features, aviation-style headrests, a luxurious large armrest, and privacy glass. Both rows have heating, massage, and ventilation functions, and the car has double-glazed windows throughout for noise insulation. However, the boot space is slightly smaller than its competitors at 503 liters, compared to the Mercedes E-Class's 540 liters.


For handling, the ET7 comes equipped with a new generation high-efficiency electric drive platform with 653 horsepower, closely matching the RS7's performance with official acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h in 3.8 seconds, and a test result of 3.68 seconds. It features air suspension and a proprietary ICC intelligent chassis domain controller. On mountain roads, the ET7 shows impressive power, especially in sport+ mode with a weighty steering feel and linear acceleration. However, it falls short of the RS7 in braking performance and lacks a rear-wheel steering system, which can be a disadvantage during sharp turns.

On highways, the ET7's powerful dual motors provide confident overtaking capabilities, with stable cruising and cornering aided by the ICC controller. Sound insulation is excellent, although the 21-inch high-performance tires can produce noticeable noise on certain road surfaces.

For urban commuting, the ET7's quietness, a trait inherent to electric vehicles, stands out. Even with over 600 horsepower, city driving is remarkably silent. The air suspension, even on its softest setting, avoids an overly floaty feeling, maintaining a connection with the road.


In terms of usability, the ET7's control logic is straightforward, with many primary operations managed by physical buttons. For functions not covered by buttons, the Nomi voice assistant can be called upon for an easy interface. Nio's Pilot Assist enables features like automatic lane-changing and highway exiting, though it's limited to highway use. The infotainment system responds swiftly with a clear logic layout and precise voice recognition, enhancing usability. However, the vertical orientation of the central screen may limit viewing area for media consumption.

The ET7's length makes it a large vehicle in its class, which could pose challenges in tight parking spaces. An upgrade to include rear-wheel steering would be beneficial. The high-resolution HUD enhances usability and safety by displaying important driving information.

Conclusion: The ET7 offers superior acceleration, a wealth of high-end features, and intelligent usability, though it falls short in agility on mountain roads and tight spaces due to the absence of rear-wheel steering. Overall, the NIO ET7 is an attractive option for city commuters who occasionally enjoy spirited driving.

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