Small electric cars are the new hotness. They’re more expensive than their petrol and diesel equivalents but, because of this, they’re normally jam-packed with clever technology. They also stand to offer lower running costs, providing you have a wall box charger installed at home.
The premium you pay for a small electric car is narrowing, too. MG has the 4, which is a family-sized electric hatchback with a 50.8kWh battery pack, a range of 218 miles for the entry-level model and a starting price of around £27,000. That’s well into Volkswagen Golf territory.
Small electric cars also make ideal stepping stones for those switching from a combustion car as they’re the most affordable route into new EV ownership. If you’re ready to take the plunge, why not check how much money you’ll get for your old car using a car valuation tool, such as this one from Parkers – You could have enough for a deposit on a finance deal.
It’s also worth looking at how much money you’ll save on things like road tax. For the time being, electric cars don’t pay any road tax so, if you’re trading in a big petrol-swilling SUV with a high CO2 output, you could save hundreds of pounds a year. Check your vehicle’s logbook to find its CO2 output, then cross-reference that with this government webpage to see how much you could save.
Below, we’ve rounded up our favourite small electric cars on sale today. Scroll down to see what’s out there. Who knows? You may find your new pride and joy!
We’ve mentioned this one already. It’s a great electric hatchback with an attractive price tag. It undercuts every other electric car in its class and, if that wasn’t sweet enough, it’s also one of the most fun to drive thanks to its rear-wheel drive layout. The drawbacks? Well, the rear seats are a bit cramped for tall adults and some of the cabin materials feel a little cheap. But come on. You can’t expect champagne for lemonade money.
GMW Ora Funky Cat
Like MG, ORA is another Chinese-owned company – and, like MG, it’s big breakthrough to the European market hinges on an electric family hatchback. The Funky Cat isn’t as much fun to drive as the MG, but it makes up for that with its interesting styling and quirky interior. If you go for the big-battery model, Ora says you’ll be able to drive for more than 260 miles before needing to recharge. The boot is comically small, though. Pack light.
The Born is the MG’s nemesis. It’s pitched as an electric hot hatchback, but Cupra sort of missed the target and created a warm-ish pseudo-MPV. But let’s set semantics aside for the moment and deal with the facts. 1: you can buy one that does 300 miles between charging stops. 2: it has a 385-litre boot, making it five litres larger than a Volkswagen Golf. 3: it has generous amounts of leg and headroom in the rear. And it has 204hp, so it’s still a good laugh on a windy road.
This is perhaps our favourite car on this list – but that’s certainly not for its driving range. Or its price, for that matter. The Honda e is tiny, it costs £30,000 and it can only drive for 137 miles before the battery runs out. But if you just look at it, you’ll see it’s an adorable little thing and the cabin is packed with wall-to-wall screens, including two beneath the A-pillars that act as your side mirrors. There’s even an HDMI socket in the dashboard, so you can connect a games console.
Vauxhall Corsa Electric
The Corsa Electric isn’t revolutionary. It’s exactly the same as a petrol Corsa, only powered by an electric motor – and that makes it perfect for those who don’t want to shout about their eco-piety. Unlike the Honda, you probably won’t need to make any changes to your driving habits, either. It has a 50kWh battery pack that offers a maximum range of 209 miles and, if you end up getting caught short on the motorway, 100kW rapid charging will top the battery up to 80 percent in 30 minutes.