Fastest electric cars in the world 2022
The days of the trundling milk float are long gone: the latest electric cars are now some of the fastest vehicles in the world, full stop
Zero tailpipe emissions and ultra-low running costs are two of the big benefits of electric cars. But an interesting 'side effect' of how they work is that they tend to be quite fast – faster than equivalent petrol and diesel models in almost all instances, and mind-bendingly quick in the most extreme (and expensive) cases.
A key characteristic of electric drivetrains is that they're simpler than petrol or diesel engines. There's no lag and very little wasted energy or inertia, plus maximum power and torque are delivered the instant you step on the accelerator. Even the most mundane electric car typically offers fast acceleration at urban speeds.
Car manufacturers large and small have taken advantage of this instant power, producing massively fast and powerful electric supercars, hypercars and racing cars. Power outputs in excess of 1,000bhp and 0-62mph times of two seconds or under aren't uncommon with these cars. The very best of these feature on our list of the best electric and hybrid supercars.
Although many of the models on this list are either development prototypes or extremely expensive and exclusive limited-run offerings, the technology and thinking behind them is expected to rapidly trickle down to more accessible electric performance cars. This bodes well for the future of driving enjoyment as the world shifts to zero-emissions mobility. Read on for our rundown of the fastest electric cars around right now.
Kia EV6 GT: 0-62mph in 3.5s, top speed 162mph
While the Kia is by far the most affordable entry on this list, it has no problem reaching a higher top speed than the Audi below, which costs almost twice as much. The high-performance variant of the South Korean brand's flagship EV produces a combined 577bhp and 740Nm of torque from its two electric motors (one on the front axle, one on the rear). The EV6 GT can also accelerate from 0-62mph in 3.5 seconds – slower than the RS e-tron GT, but as fast as the latest BMW M3. All while being able to carry five people and a lot of stuff. Get more information on the Kia EV6 here.
Audi RS e-tron GT: 0-62mph in 3.3s, top speed 155mph
The second entry on this list is one of the few that's actually available to buy, with the Audi RS e-tron GT setting the bar as the first fully electric RS high-performance flagship from the German brand. The sister car to the Porsche Taycan (more on that later), the RS e-tron GT produces a whopping 590bhp from its dual-motor setup. Thanks to that power, the over-two-tonne saloon is capable of 0-62mph in 3.3 seconds and has a top speed of 155mph.
The regular e-tron GT is no slouch either, though: with 469bhp, the standard variant can reach 152mph and will sprint from 0-62mph in 4.1 seconds. The e-tron GT is tuned more for comfort compared to its Porsche counterpart, but it’s still agile thanks to its four-wheel steering system and responsive handling, while there's little body roll on twister roads. Read our full Audi e-tron GT review here.
Lotus Evija: 0-62mph in under 3s; top speed over 200mph
Traditional British sports-car manufacturer Lotus isn't holding back for its first electric model. The Evija (pronounced 'E-vi-ya') sells for a cool £2 million, with buyers getting 1,972bhp, a 0-60mph time of less than three seconds and a top speed of over 200mph. The first year of production has already sold out.
In keeping with Lotus tradition, the Evija is as light as possible, as it's built around a carbon-fibre chassis and has all carbon-fibre body panels, too. A 'tunnel' through the bodywork boosts airflow, while more clever trim pieces at the front channels cooling air to the car's battery pack. Read more about the Lotus Evija here.
Porsche Taycan: 0-62mph in 2.8s, top speed 161mph
The Taycan is the prestigious German brand’s first zero-emissions model which, like the Audi e-tron GT, has a hefty price tag attached to it. But it proves you can transport four adults in comfort, while still keeping the driver entertained with engaging handling and seriously quick acceleration.
The range-topping Turbo S does 0-62mph in a Ferrari-bothering 2.8 seconds and tops out at an impressive 161mph, so it'll be right at home on the autobahns of its native Germany. The Taycan is about more than just raw speed, though; it offers the same superb handling that other Porsches – from the petrol-powered 911 to the hybrid Panamera – are renowned for. Read our full Porsche Taycan review here.
Nio EP9: 0-62mph in 2.7s, top speed 196mph
One of the most futuristic-looking cars on this list is the Nio EP9, the flagship supercar from a Chinese manufacturer that means serious business. In-wheel motors give four-wheel drive, the slippery body provides plenty of downforce, and there's a total of 1,341bhp on tap.
We’re told that the EP9 sprints from 0-62mph in just 2.7 seconds, on the way to a top speed close to 200mph. And the car’s 6m45s lap of the Nurburgring race track in Germany gives cars like the Porsche 918 Spyder a run for their money. Claimed range is 265 miles, while the battery can be swapped directly for fully charged replacements. Though originally slated for limited-run production, it seems the EP9 will now just stand as the brand's technical showcase.
Lucid Air: 0-60mph in 2.5s, top speed 168mph
You may not have heard of American startup Lucid, but its boss was chief engineer on the Tesla Model S. Lucid’s first car, the Air, certainly boasts some eye-catching statistics that might give Tesla the shakes. Several versions of the Model S and Porsche Taycan rival are offered, with the top-spec Performance packing 1,111bhp. It hits 60mph in just 2.5 seconds – the same as the Bugatti Chiron hypercar. Yet there’s room for the family and a 626-litre boot.
Like Tesla, the Lucid offers impressive range figures (and a luxurious interior) as well as searing performance. The flagship version manages up to 471 miles, but there’s a long-range model that offers up to 520 miles. When it comes to the UK, it may well be the longest-range electric car on the market.
Tesla Model S Plaid: 0-62mph in 1.9s, top speed 200mph
The fastest electric saloon car here is the one that started it all: the Tesla Model S. The Model S Plaid is the quickest version of the car yet. It has three electric motors, produces 1,009bhp and can accelerate from 0-60mph in 1.99 seconds.
Expected to cost just under £120,000, it isn’t clear when the Model S Plaid will arrive in the UK – production delays mean European Model S sales have been paused for the time being. The Model X Plaid also produces 1,009bhp, but according to Tesla, it has a lower top speed of 163mph and 0-60mph time of 2.5 seconds. Read our full Model S and Model X reviews.
Pininfarina Battista: 0-62mph in under 2s, top speed 217mph
With a powertrain provided by Rimac, the Battista boasts extraordinary performance figures that are unsurprisingly similar to those of the Nevera below. Four electric motors combine to produce 1,873bhp and 2,300Nm of torque; 0-62mph is said to take less than two seconds, with 0-186mph dealt with in just 12 seconds.
A top speed of 217mph isn't quite as extreme as the Nevera's, but buyers are unlikely to care: the Battista's gorgeous bodywork has been crafted by a company responsible for some of the prettiest Ferraris ever made. The Battista might just be up there with the best of them. Read the latest Pininfarina Battista news here.
Tesla Roadster: 0-62mph in 1.9s, top speed 250mph
It’s not on sale yet – it should arrive in 2023, apparently – but the Tesla Roadster will be a force to be reckoned with for all supercars, electric or otherwise. The claimed figures speak for themselves: 0-62mph in 1.9 seconds, 0-100mph in 4.2 seconds, a standing quarter mile in 8.9 seconds and a top speed of around 250mph. Power has yet to be revealed, but the torque figure is expected to be an incredible 10,000Nm.
The Roadster will be powered by three electric motors and a 200kWh battery that should give a range of 620 miles – although we imagine that figure will drop dramatically if you plan to use every last drop of the car’s stated performance. Read the latest Tesla Roadster news here.
Rimac Nevera: 0-60mph in 1.85s, top speed 258mph
The latest product from the Croatian manufacturer – made famous by The Grand Tour presenter Richard Hammond’s high-profile crash in 2017 – the Nevera packs a total of four electric motors for a titanic power output of 1,914hp, allied to maximum torque of 2,360Nm.
The big (and small) numbers don't stop there: the Nevera can hit 60mph from rest in under 1.9 seconds and will keep going to a dizzying top speed of nearly 260mph. Despite that mind-boggling performance, the car also boasts reasonable range and charging figures, with a top-up from 0-80% taking less than 20 minutes, plus a projected driving range of 340 miles. Just 150 are being built, priced at a cool €2 million each.
Aspark Owl: 0-60mph in 1.69s, top speed 249mph
Japanese company Aspark has one aspiration with the Owl: to make it the fastest-accelerating road-legal electric car you can buy. And, true to its name, the Aspark Owl really flies. From a standstill, a burst of acceleration will see you at the UK’s single-lane speed limit in less than 1.7 seconds. If you have somewhere long (and safe) enough to keep the throttle pinned, you’ll top out at nearly 250mph.
Its economy statistics neatly match a Hyundai Kona Electric. It has a 64kWh battery and a 280-mile range, so the company says. But it is slightly more powerful than the Kona, with four electric motors and a power output somewhere close to 2,000bhp.
McMurtry Spéirling: British-built prototype holds Goodwood record
Until 2022, the Volkswagen ID.R held the hillclimb record at the Goodwood Festival of Speed. But then up stepped the mysterious McMurtry Spéirling, a miniscule single-seat prototype, which romped up the Goodwood hill in just 39.08 seconds – almost a second quicker than the ID.R.
The car, which wouldn’t look out of place in a Batman film, uses a large fan at the rear to generate huge amounts of downforce. That helps to ‘stick’ the car to the road and enables blistering cornering speeds. Set up for the hillclimb, the Spéirling hits 0-60mph in just 1.5 seconds and has a 150mph top speed.
Volkswagen ID. R: Nurburgring record holder
The Nio EP9 didn't hold the electric lap record at the Nurburgring for long: the Volkswagen ID. R electric racer lowered the benchmark to just over 6m5s in June 2019. Other records set by the car include the Goodwood Festival of Speed hillclimb (now beaten by the Spéirling) and the ascent of the Tianmen Shan Big Gate Road in China.
The ID.R was initially built to win the 2018 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, and it did so in some style. Its time of 7m57.148s along the 12.24-mile course smashed the existing record by 16.73 seconds, becoming the first vehicle to dip under the eight-minute mark. Read the latest Volkswagen ID. R news here.
Formula E 'Gen2': single-seater racer
The latest generation of Formula E cars are incredible racing cars, intended as the pure-electric answer to Formula 1. While previous seasons required drivers to change cars mid-race, the latest models have a much larger battery capacity (54kWh) and can go the full distance.
Acceleration from 0-62mph takes less than three seconds and the car weighs just 900kg, with 350bhp or so on tap. Sophisticated and futuristic aerodynamics help drivers extract the most from the series' road-car-like tyres. Find out more about Formula E here.
Buckeye Bullet 3: top speed 342mph
Claiming the title of the world’s fastest electric car is the catchily named Buckeye Bullet 3. The car was developed by Ohio State University in conjunction with French company Venturi to take on the world speed record for electric cars at the Bonneville Salt Flats in September 2016.
The result of their efforts was 342.144mph, thanks to two separate electric drivetrains and supremely slippery bodywork with a drag coefficient of just 0.13Cd. Further attempts at the record by the Buckeye Bullet team are expected to clear 400mph; a hydrogen-electric version is also in the works.
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