Human Horizons HiPhi Z: wild-looking EV driven

August 02, 2023 by

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The Human Horizon HiPhi Z is a luxury electric vehicle with wild styling and some fun technology, but it’s not very practical and our test car was incredibly glitchy

Pros:

  • Good range and performance
  • Lovely interior
  • Genuinely unique styling

Cons:

  • Our test car was very glitchy
  • Needing to charge your key is annoying
  • You can’t buy it in the UK until 2025

Is the Human Horizons HiPhi Z a good car?

If you’re looking for a luxury electric car that looks like nothing else on the road, then you want to take a look at the Human Horizons HiPhi Z. It’s a little bit like a century egg, because it comes from China and it’s something of an acquired taste.

You see, when you think of cars with extroverted styling you might think of Lexus, with its sharp creases and futuristic design, or perhaps something more extravagant like a Bugatti Chiron. Well, nothing turns heads quite like the HiPhi Z.

It’s certainly more eye-catching than a Porsche Taycan, BMW i7 or Mercedes EQS, which each do the luxury thing with varying degrees of imposing design and elegance. The HiPhi Z is about as elegant as a punch in the face. But we kinda like it.

Up front there are hints of Nissan GT-R to its design – if you reimagined it for a dystopian future, that is. And if you thought the front end was a bit messy, wait until you see the rear. There’s no window, a spoiler that looks a bit like Geordi La Forge from Star Trek, and a massive LED light bar.

In fact, LEDs are everywhere. There are 4,066 around the car’s exterior and they have various functions, including a panel on the side of the car that you can use to display words. Really. This only works when you’re stopped, so no friendly words of advice to the person who just cut you up on the motorway…

Inside, things are marginally less wacky, but unique all the same. Fortunately, it’s not all for show, as the seats are incredibly comfortable and the materials used throughout are fantastic quality. The leather is vegan but it feels super soft and squidgy.

The infotainment system is top notch, too. It’s a 15.1-inch display with sharp graphics and instant response to your touch. It’s run by the same system that powers the Fortnite video game, in fact.

A high-tech HiPhi, then. Well, unfortunately, it sometimes seems a bit too clever for its own good. For example, you have to wirelessly charge the key and we kept having issues with it dying and locking us out of the car.

This was just one of countless glitches we encountered while testing the HiPhi Z, including temperamental doors and an annoying, incessant beep. Hopefully this is just because we had an early production model, but it’s alarming when the vast majority of functions are controlled electronically through the infotainment screen.

Away from the tech and it’s mostly good news again. Jump in the back seats and the material quality continues, but in terms of practicality it’s a mixed bag. You get loads of knee room, but because the floor is high up you don’t get much under-thigh support, while head space will be very limited for anyone over six feet.

The boot isn’t much better. At 316 litres it’s actually less spacious than a Volkswagen Polo. It becomes even more disappointing compared with the 610 litres in a Mercedes EQS and 700 litres in a Tesla Model S. There is a front boot, but it’s so small you’d struggle to fit a laptop in there.

There can be fewer complaints about the way the HiPhi Z drives. Around town the worst thing is that you’ll be constantly stopped by passers by who want to talk about the car, making every journey take twice as long.

Out of town it’s pretty good fun on a twisty road, hiding its weight well, not getting too unsettled by rubbish British roads, and having loads of oomph to accelerate out of corners.

The air suspension is adept at ironing out bumps in the road, and there’s just a bit of wind noise at motorway speeds. It’s an otherwise comfortable place to eat up the miles.

And eat up miles you will, because the HiPhi Z’s official range is 440 miles, and our testing suggests close to 400 should be possible. There’s just the one battery option, and this comes with a twin-motor set-up that provides 672hp and 820Nm of torque for a 3.8-second 0-60mph time. A charge speed of 150kW is okay, but the Porsche Taycan can hit nearly double that.

This is a minor complaint, and one of very few complaints we have with the HiPhi Z. If the lack of boot space doesn’t worry you and the annoying glitches can be fixed, this is a fantastic luxury electric car that comes with a great sense of humour.

We highly recommend the Human Horizon HiPhi Z – but it’s not on sale yet in the UK. You’ll have to wait until 2025. Until then, why not browse our favourite electric cars and see how much you could save through carwow. We also have an extensive stock of used electric cars from our network of trusted dealers. And if you’re looking to sell your car, carwow can help with that, too.