Top 10 cheapest electric cars 2022
Contrary to popular opinion, not all electric cars are expensive. Here are the cheapest ones available in the UK right now
There's a wide range of electric cars on the market these days, but it's fair to say more than a few of them are flagship SUVs and luxury saloons that easily attract six-figure price tags. But that’s not to say there aren’t much more affordable routes into zero-emissions motoring, too.
Electric cars tend to be more expensive than their petrol or diesel-powered counterparts, but prices are coming down, and a new generation of circa-£20,000 EVs will be arriving within the next few years, capable of easily covering over 200 miles on a charge. Plus, electric cars generally are far less expensive to run and attract lower company-car tax, so you claw back the difference over the course of ownership.
Therefore, if you’re a budget-minded motorist, you needn’t wait until the Volkswagen ID.1 and its Cupra and Skoda sister models arrive in 2025. Scroll down for our list of the cheapest electric cars you can buy right now. And once you're done, check out who won at the 2022 DrivingElectric Awards and follow DrivingElectric on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube for the latest on all electric and hybrid cars, at any price point.
1. Smart EQ ForTwo – £22,225
Smart's EQ ForTwo is a two-seater version of the ForFour below. With no back seats to weigh it down, range improves slightly from the larger car, although 83 miles on a charge remains far below what the likes of the Fiat 500 and MINI Electric that also feature on this list can offer. There's also a Cabrio version that combines city-focused driving dynamics with open-air thrills. In a warmer climate, this might be one to consider. But in the UK? Forget it. Read our Smart EQ ForTwo review here.
2. Smart EQ ForFour – £22,295
The EQ ForFour is powered by an 80bhp motor, delivering a leisurely 0-62mph figure of 12.4 seconds. The battery measures 17.6kWh and the official range isn’t great, at 81 miles. This is poor by early EV standards, never mind modern ones, and an update in late 2019 left the powertrain untouched. Still, if you’re only ever going to drive to the shops and back – or perhaps tackle the school run each day – then the EQ ForFour will serve those purposes well. Just don’t expect it to do much else. Read our Smart EQ ForFour review here.
3. Fiat 500 – £23,835
The latest Fiat 500 is electric-only, rivalling the MINI Electric and Honda e. It offers good real-world range for a small electric car, with either 115 or 199 miles depending which battery size you go for, all while retaining the charm and fun factor its predecessor was known for. It's good to drive, has a well designed interior and is roomier inside than the car it replaces. It's still not the most practical proposition – the boot measures just 185 litres, for example – but there's still much to enjoy. It's one of our favourite small cars on sale and winner of the Best Urban Electric Car title at the 2022 DrivingElectric Awards. Read our Fiat 500 review here.
4. Vauxhall Corsa-e – £28,555
The Corsa-e these days starts from just over £28,500 in the wake of the plug-in car grant being scrapped. That's about £1,700 less than its French sister car – the Peugeot e-208 – but thanks to an update in December 2021, the Corsa-e is now capable of covering up to 222 miles on a single charge. Plus, it’s comfortable, well equipped and has a smart interior, making it worth a look. Read our full review here.
5. MG ZS EV – £29,245
The winner of the Car of The Year and Best Value Electric Car titles at the 2022 DrivingElectric Awards, the refreshed ZS EV offers an impressive range and standard kit for under £30,000. MG's electric SUV comes with a generous amount of equipment, including LED headlights, adaptive cruise control, keyless entry, a 360-degree parking camera and a 10.1-inch central touchscreen. The recently introduced entry-level ZS EV gets a 198-mile range thanks to a 51kWh battery, but upgrading to the Long Range version with its 72kWh battery boosts the car's potential range to 273 miles. Read our MG ZS EV review here for more.
6. MG 5 SW EV – £29,695
The MG 5 SW EV is one of the best-value electric cars on sale – and also the only mainstream electric estate you can buy. Offering family-car practicality for near-supermini money, it has plenty of space for passengers, luggage and pets. The Long Range model has a claimed range of up to 250 miles, and 50kW charging means you can top up to 80% in 40 minutes using a compatible charger. Elsewhere, the MG 5 brings a good level of equipment for its price, including cruise control, smartphone connectivity and a reversing camera, while everything is covered by a generous seven-year/80,000-mile warranty. Add the fact that it's decent to drive and there's little to sour what's a very good deal. Read our full review here.
7. Citroen e-C4 – £29,995
Sneaking in just under the £30,000 mark in entry-level trim, the e-C4 is one of the best-value new electric cars you can buy in the post-plug-in grant era, offering as it does decent range, strong performance and useful in-car technology in a large five-door hatchback bodystyle. It has distinctive styling and comfortable around-town ride quality to boot, making for an appealing all-round package. Read our full review here.
8. Mazda MX-30 – £30,050
Although it's priced very close to the French hatchbacks above and below it in this list, the Mazda MX-30 is something of a different proposition. For starters, it's not quite as practical as they are, with pretty cramped and dark rear seats, plus an unusual pillarless door arrangement. It's also not a class leader when it comes to range, promising only 124 miles on a charge. But it does offer typically sporty Mazda handling, as well as attractive and sustainable materials in the cabin. Read our full review here.
9. Peugeot e-208 – £30,195
The e-208 is based on the same platform as the Vauxhall Corsa-e, as both firms are part of the Stellantis Group. This means the e-208 gets the same 50kWh battery as that car, although its official range is slightly higher, at 225 miles. Arguably, both the exterior and interior design of the e-208 surpass that of the Corsa-e, which goes some way to explaining why it's a bit more expensive. Read our full Peugeot e-208 review here.
10. Hyundai Kona Electric – £30,450
The Kona Electric is offered with two battery sizes, including a 64kWh unit that offers 300 miles of range. However, go for the smaller 39kWh battery in entry-level SE Connect trim and the Kona Electric comes in at just over £30,000 – making it the second-cheapest zero-emissions SUV on sale in the UK, after the MG ZS. It’s still well equipped, has sharp styling and is relaxing to drive. Read our full Kona Electric review here.
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