Vauxhall Corsa Electric review: the Corsa we all know... but with a plug!
The evergreen Vauxhall Corsa is much more expensive than the petrol version, but is comfortable, spacious and has a solid range nonetheless
- Practical five-door body
- Good real-world range
- Drives quite well
- No cable storage
- Interior quality
- £29,000 starting price
Wallbox charge time
Rapid charge time
7hrs 45mins (0-100%, 7.4kW)
28mins (10-80%, 100kW)
Vauxhall Corsa Electric verdict
The Vauxhall Corsa Electric is a great small electric car. In fact, once you’ve got over the high purchase price (or have nailed down a good finance deal), it’s hard to argue with the 200-mile real-world range and rock-bottom running costs. The facelifted Corsa’s new ‘Vizor’ face brings its back up-to-date with the rest of the Vauxhall line-up, and we’re pleased to report the refreshed infotainment system is much easier to use than before. While there are ultimately cheaper and more capable models on the market, it’s easy to see the appeal of the electric Corsa – especially if you’re after a small company car.
Range details, specs and alternatives
Vauxhall has big plans when it comes to electric cars, with three new EVs just around the corner, before the brand ditches the combustion engine altogether by 2028. But it all started with this: the Vauxhall Corsa Electric. It’s the zero-emissions version of one of Britain's best-selling cars and rival to the likes of the Renault ZOE, MINI Electric and Honda e.
Previously called the Vauxhall Corsa-e, the Corsa Electric’s biggest rival is the Peugeot E-208, with which it shares its platform and a myriad of parts. Also mechanically similar is the larger, but not much more expensive, Vauxhall Mokka Electric; all three cars have recently received updates adding a larger 51kWh battery for a range of circa 250 miles, as well as a more powerful 154bhp electric motor.
Penny-pinching plug-in Corsa buyers also still have the option of the old powertrain setup. This comprises a smaller 50kWh battery pack, as well as a less-powerful 134bhp electric motor; despite the disparity in power output, both models take roughly eight seconds to reach 62mph, with the 50kWh model offering a maximum range of 222 miles, according to Vauxhall. No matter which model you go for, all versions of the Corsa Electric get standard 100kW rapid charging, enabling a 10-80% top-up in around half an hour.
Of course, being electric, the Corsa Electric isn't as affordable as its petrol-powered counterpart, with the entry-level model now starting at just over £32,000 and the price tag rising to over £35,000 for the top-spec big battery version. In comparison, the larger, more practical MG4 EV starts from under £27,000, while the similarly-sized BYD Dolphin will set you back just over £26,000 when entry-level models arrive next year.
The line-up currently consists of three trims: Design, GS and Ultimate. As you’d hope for the high list price, even basic cars come well equipped, with 16-inch alloy wheels, LED lights, climate control, rear parking sensors and a seven-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.
Opting for the GS trim gives you the option of the newer powertrain and expands the kit list further with a larger 10-inch screen, sportier seats, a dual-tone roof and a reversing camera. The ‘all bells-and-whistles’ Ultimate model gets heated massage seats and Matrix-LED headlights but will cost you an eye-watering £38,500.
At the time of writing (November 2023), if you’re able to stump up a 30% deposit, Vauxhall will offer you a Corsa Electric on 0% PCP finance. This is available for all Vauxhall EVs – including the new Vauxhall Astra Electric – and is not something to be sniffed at, especially at a time when good deals are rather hard to come by.
Click here to see why you can trust DrivingElectric reviews, or for a more detailed look at the Vauxhall Corsa Electric, read on for the rest of our in-depth review…
In This Review
- 1Verdict - currently readingThe evergreen Vauxhall Corsa is much more expensive than the petrol version, but is comfortable, spacious and has a solid range nonetheless
- 2Range, battery & chargingThe choice of two battery sizes and standard 100kW DC rapid charging means the electric Corsa is more capable than you might think
- 3Running costs & insuranceIf you can stomach the high list price, the Vauxhall Corsa Electric can be an incredibly cost-effective small car to run
- 4Performance, motor & driveThe plug-in Corsa is easy to drive and its electric motor has a surprising amount of poke
- 5Interior, dashboard & comfortThe electric Corsa's dashboard is a little drab, while the scratchy plastics on the doors aren't befitting of its price tag
- 6Boot space, seating & practicalityThe Corsa Electric's boot is a good size, but it misses out on the petrol car's underfloor storage, which leaves nowhere to put the charging cables
- 7Reliability & safety ratingDon't be put off by its four-star Euro NCAP crash-test rating; the Corsa Electric comes loaded with safety kit