The premium SUV segment is already packed with competitors, but Italian EV upstart company Aehra wants to leap above them all with the vehicle you see here. For now, it's simply called the Aehra SUV and whilst it's not the first SUV to have gullwing doors, it is the first to have gullwing and butterfly doors.
Aehra prefers to call them elytra-like doors, but whatever you choose to call them, the front two open up and forward while the rear simply go up. The doors are the most striking feature of this new electric SUV without question, though the ultra-thin side mirrors and short front/rear overhangs also capture the eye.
The mirrors are inspired by racing motorcycles, and the steeply raked windscreen blends into the roof which then sweeps rearward for a fastback vibe. The body pretty much ends with the SUV's 118-inch wheelbase, culminating in what Aehra Chief Design Officer Filippo Perini calls a "courageous approach." Perini previously served as chief designer at Lamborghini, which certainly explains the intriguing design.
Of course, the slick shape is as much about aerodynamic efficiency as it is appearance. Exactly how efficient is still unknown – details on power and range will come later – but the SUV does incorporate active aero components at the front and rear to optimise performance, efficiency, and safety. Aehra also makes liberal use of composite materials for the SUV's monobody construction.
Gallery: Aehra SUV
"The Aehra SUV represents a radical combination of cutting-edge sustainable materials, ultra-advanced EV technology, smart manufacturing technologies, pure Italian design, and of course, a seminal moment in our company’s history,” said Aehra Founder and CEO Hazim Nada.
Aehra unveiled the exterior design of the SUV in Milan, where the company is headquartered. Plans are also in the works for an electric saloon to follow, which should debut in February 2023. If everything stays on schedule, both the SUV and saloon will reach customers in 2025.