Top 10 best electric cars 2022
Here, we run through our favourite new electric cars that you can buy right now in the UK…
A decade ago, electric cars ‘for the masses’ on showroom floors were few and far between. But fast-forward to today and we’re almost spoiled for choice, with a plethora of EVs ranging from city cars to funky family minibuses now available. And the selection is constantly growing!
Polestar, Subaru, Renault, BMW, Lexus, Lotus, Smart, Peugeot, Rolls-Royce, Maserati and Jeep – to name but a few – all have new electric cars coming out over the next 12 months. But it’s not just EVs that are evolving; the UK’s network of rapid and ultra-rapid electric-car chargers continues to expand, making it easier to live with EVs and cover long distances in them, too.
Electric cars are also more relaxing and easier to drive than their petrol and diesel-powered counterparts thanks to silent powertrains and stunning performance on tap, while zero tailpipe emissions and rock-bottom running costs make EVs extremely appealing to company-car drivers.
So, if you're in the market for a new electric car, you’ve come to the right place! We’ve put together a round-up of the top 10 best electric cars on sale right now in 2022, plus video reviews if you want to take a closer look:
Make sure to check out the winners of the 2022 DrivingElectric Awards and our list of the best electric SUVs in 2022 as well to see what’s impressed us the most over the past year – and don't forget to follow DrivingElectric on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube for the very latest news and reviews.
1. MG ZS EV
Winner of our 2022 Car of the Year and Best Value Electric Car awards, the MG ZS EV is one of the most affordable EVs on the road – starting from just over £29,000 – but can also cover up to 273 miles on a charge and comes with a respectable amount of standard kit. A recent facelift, saw the ZS EV’s styling and infotainment upgraded, with the latter now including a digital driver’s display and 10.1-inch central touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. There’s plenty of space inside, too; coupled with the 470-litre boot, this makes the ZS EV an ideal choice for most families. Read our full review to find out more.
2. Hyundai Ioniq 5
The Hyundai Ioniq 5 is part of the next generation of electric cars from the Korean carmaker, and it shows the future is bright. The space-age styling is more attention-grabbing than some sports cars, but there’s plenty of substance to go with it. The Ioniq 5’s cabin and ride are supremely comfortable, plus it's well priced and offers around 300 miles of range in its most efficient form. Most impressive, though, is the 220kW ultra-rapid charging, meaning that if you find a fast enough point, topping up from 10-80% takes just 18 minutes. Read our full review to find out more, and check out our triple test of the Hyundai Ioniq 5 against the BMW iX3 and Volvo XC40 Recharge.
3. Skoda Enyaq iV
The Enyaq iV is Skoda’s first dedicated electric car, and undeniably one of the best on sale today. The zero-emissions SUV is an ideal family car, offering boatloads of practicality; a spacious, modern and tech-filled cabin; excellent refinement and a solid real-world driving range of between 246 and 338 miles depending on which model you go for. It's also competitively priced and gets the brand’s usual ‘Simply Clever’ features like umbrellas hidden in the doors. Read our full review to find out more.
4. MG4 EV
MG’s budget-friendly alternative to the VW ID.3 and Nissan Leaf represents a major step forward for the recently revitalised brand. It uses an all-new, EV-specific platform (that’ll soon underpin a drop-top zero-emissions sports car), and the electric hatchback can cover up to 281 miles on a charge – although an Extended Range version capable of nearly 330 miles is coming next year. It’s also fun to drive, has a spacious cabin, a big boot and a lengthy standard kit list. Its styling may divide people, but the MG4’s starting price of under £26,000 is undeniably impressive. Simply put, the MG4 EV is one of the best electric cars on sale today, it just also happens to be one of the cheapest. Read our full review to find out more.
5. Fiat 500
Fiat ditched the pump for the plug with the latest 500 city car. The winner of our Best Urban Electric Car award for 2022 and our Car of the Year for 2021 has a stylish and tech-filled cabin, which isn't overly complex or excessively minimal. On the road, the Fiat is fun to drive, with a better seating position and smoother ride than its often uncomfortable petrol-engined predecessor. There are three versions currently available to order, each boasting a range of 199 miles, a generous amount of kit and 85kW rapid charging. Read our full review to find out more, and check out our triple test of the 500, MINI Electric and Honda e.
6. Kia EV6
Kia has been in the EV game longer than most carmakers, but now it’s ushering a new generation of zero-emissions models with this sporty coupe-SUV. The EV6 is more than a match for upmarket EV rivals like the Ford Mustang Mach-E, Nissan Ariya and VW ID.5 when it comes to practicality, technology, comfort and handling. But it’s not only quick and engaging to drive; with all models sold in the UK featuring a 77kWh battery, the EV6 can cover up to 328 miles on a charge. And when you do need to top up, the EV6 can recharge at up to 233kW – faster even than its Hyundai Ioniq 5 sister car. Read our full review for more, and check out our twin test of the Kia EV6 against the Volkswagen ID.4 GTX here.
7. BMW i4
Fundamentally, the BMW i4 is a zero-emissions take of the German brand’s winning four-door saloon formula that has come to define what we expect from company cars – and the i4 lives up to those expectations. This is a true driver’s EV; the only other electric car that handles as well, or is as engaging as the BMW i4 is the much pricier Porsche Taycan. Coupled with superb refinement and build quality, an excellent infotainment setup and rapid-charging capability mean the i4 is more than a match for the Tesla Model 3 it directly rivals. We expect the entry-level eDrive40 will be the more popular variant with its 365-mile range, but the i4 M50 – BMW’s first-ever electric M performance model no less – does pack quite the punch thanks to all-wheel-drive and 537bhp on tap. Read our full review to find out more, and check out our triple test of the i4, Tesla Model 3 and BMW i4.
8. Porsche Taycan
The Porsche Taycan proved that electric cars have the potential to be just as exciting and engaging to drive as enthusiast-focused petrol-powered models. The Taycan line-up has expanded significantly since the car was first introduced, with the first zero-emissions Porsche now available in two estate body styles (Cross Turismo and Sport Turismo) as well as regular saloon form. There are also several versions to decide between, from the entry-level rear-drive Taycan right up to the range-topping Turbo S, which packs 751bhp. In 2021, Porsche added a more driver-focused GTS model, which looks to be the sweet spot of the range, offering close to 600bhp from a dual-motor setup, as well as over 300 miles of range. Read our full review to find out more, and check out our twin test of the Porsche Taycan vs the Audi e-tron GT here.
9. BMW iX
Sitting at the top of BMW’s rapidly expanding range of electric i models is the iX – winner of our Best Luxury Electric Car award in 2022. Like most of the German marque’s cars, the styling of its flagship SUV makes it stand apart from rivals like the Audi e-tron and Tesla Model X, but so does the way it goes down the road. Quiet, comfortable and trimmed in some of the highest-quality materials in this segment, the iX feels suitably luxurious, but it’s also great to drive, and capable of covering up to 381 miles on a charge if you go for the range-topping xDrive50 model with its 105kWh battery. Read our full review to find out more.
10. Tesla Model Y
The Tesla Model Y is the latest addition to the pioneering company’s line-up, and the one many had been waiting for. This mid-size electric SUV leads the pack when it comes to rapid-charging technology, practicality and even performance. There’s three versions available to choose from – Standard Range, Long Range and Performance – all of which feature a minimalist yet classy interior and a whopping 15-inch touchscreen. The Model Y boasts a range of up to 331 miles in Long Range form, or over 350 miles according to Tesla, while the Performance version does 0-60mph in 3.5 seconds (that’s faster than some Porsche Taycan models, in case you were wondering). Combine that with over 800 litres of boot space on offer, a spacious cabin and the ability to go from 10-80% charge in just over half-an-hour, you get why it deserves a spot on this list. Read our full review to find out more, and check out our twin test of the Tesla Model Y vs the Audi Q4 e-tron here.
How to choose the best electric car for you: top tips
1. There’s an electric car for everyone now
Electric cars have come a long way since the days when the G-Wiz and Nissan Leaf were the only EVs on the road. In 2022, the choice is immense. At one end of the spectrum, you have budget-minded models like the MG ZS EV and Kia Niro EV, as well as compact city cars like Fiat 500, while at the other end are ultra-premium models like the BMW iX and Mercedes EQS, as well as high-performance flagships that casually boast close to 1,000bhp power outputs.
One thing they all have in common is a near-silent running gear that can provide zippy performance and – more importantly for some – a relaxing driving experience previously reserved only for the most luxurious cars on the road. With instant torque on tap, no gearchanges to deal with and regenerative braking that can allow for ‘one- pedal’ driving, there’s a lot to like about being between the wheel of an EV.
2. Make sure you can reliably top up your electric car
There’s a lot to like about owning an electric car, however you need to think about how you’re going to keep your zero-emissions pride and joy topped up! It’s not a problem if you have private off-street parking, as installing a home wallbox will allow you to recharge overnight, ready for the next day.
Don’t worry if you’re one of the many people who use on-street parking, as cities like London are now well served by public charging points, so you can get away with not having a charger at home or work. If you do less than 200 or so miles a week, a top-up from a public charging point every few days should be sufficient.
You may need to think twice about switching to electric if your average daily mileage exceeds the range of the car you’re considering. But, thanks to rapid-charging points you can find dotted around the UK, particularly at service stations, longer journeys are now a cinch for most electric cars, too.
3. Low running costs make up for higher price tags
One unavoidable downside of switching to electric is the higher starting prices of EVs compared to their combustion-engine counterparts. For example, while the petrol-powered version of the Peugeot 208 hatchback starts from just under £19,000, the zero-emissions e-208 is priced at nearly £30,000.
But the real savings are to be made in running costs. Electric cars attract just 2% company-car tax, are currently zero-rated for VED (road tax), require less frequent servicing and on average cost less to ‘fuel’ than their petrol or diesel equivalents. Plus, if you frequently travel into the London Congestion Charge zone, or any of the other clean-air zones in the UK, you’ll avoid their fees, too.
4. Consider leasing an electric car
Because electric cars generally sport higher price tags than their petrol-powered counterparts, and because their features and technology are evolving fast right now, leasing may be a better option for some. There are downsides, such as there being no option to own the car at the end of the contract, but electric cars are so popular right now that there are plenty of deals out there, allowing you to get behind the wheel of the latest models for a fixed monthly amount.
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