If you’re interested in buying an electric car, but hate the idea of paying a hefty upfront cost or having to visit the gas station for recharging, then this list might interest you. It includes ten of the best budget-friendly electric cars around the world.
Smart ForTwo Electric Drive
Starting with the most popular car on this list, the Smart for Two Electric Drive is a great choice for singles. It’s not only an electric car but it’s a two-seater! The vehicle uses special lithium-ion batteries that allow you to drive up to 76 miles on a single charge, according to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). It’s fast, stylish, and affordable. The Smart for Two Electric Drive is now for sale in the United States and will also be available in third-party electric car dealerships around the country.
Ford C-Max Energi
Ford is a well-known name when it comes to manufacturing reliable, affordable cars that use hybrid technology. The Ford C-Max Energi is no different. It’s an efficient car that blends a huge amount of technology with an eye-catching design. It has plenty of cargo space and heating or air conditioning can be adjusted via settings on the dashboard or smartphone app. The car gets an EPA rating of 88 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) and has a total range of 620 miles on a single charge. The Ford C-Max Energi also has plenty of room for five passengers without sacrificing its sporty interior design.
KIA Soul EV
The KIA Soul first went on sale in the United States in 2012 and was named a Ward’s 10 Best Interiors winner. It’s now the first electric car from KIA Motors, which is part of a $1-trillion-a-year South Korean conglomerate Hyundai Motor Company. The vehicle has plenty of technology and can go up to 76 miles on a single charge. Its lithium-ion polymer battery takes only nine hours to be recharged and is kept cool by a ventilated grille.
The Mitsubishi i-MiEV is the most affordable electric car on this list and one of the cheapest around the world. It’s an urban runabout designed for short trips around town or to work, but can also handle long commutes with ease. The i-MiEV is fitted with a 23-kWh lithium-ion battery, which has an operating range of 62 miles. It also has a top speed of 65 mph, which is enough for city driving or interstate highways. The lithium-ion battery pack can be fully charged in 10 hours when using a regular 110V household outlet and four hours when using a special high-power cord.
Tesla Model S
The Tesla Model S is an American luxury all-electric five-seater sedan. It’s the most expensive car on this list but has plenty of technology and design to go with it. The vehicle’s lithium-ion batteries are unique because they have an energy density greater than any other type of battery out there today, according to Green Car Reports.
The Smart ED is a three-seated electric city car. It has an EPA-rated range of 73 miles and a total range of 310 miles. The vehicle weighs just 2,740 pounds, which helps its performance and range, according to Green Car Reports. The Smart ED won the 2009 World Design award at the International Auto Show in Frankfurt, Germany.
Chevrolet Spark EV
The Chevrolet Spark EV is a small car that offers great performance with a host of features that include an interesting overall feel. This model is great for an urban environment since it’s relatively small and can fit in tight spaces without issue. The model has a lot to offer in the way of range, power, and overall performance. With an installed battery system of 16 kWh, the Spark EV has an adequate driving range of 82 miles per charge but is counted on to hit the market with about 114 miles per charge.
Toyota Rav4 EV
It’s the only sports utility vehicle on this list and one of the first electric vehicles from Toyota Motor Company. The RAV4 EV can last up to 100 miles on a single charge and can be recharged in seven hours using a 110V household outlet, according to Green Car Reports. On-board batteries allow for regenerative braking, which captures energy that would otherwise be lost.
The Nissan Leaf is an affordable electric vehicle that made headlines when it was first unveiled in 2010. The car has an EPA-rated range of 73 miles and can be recharged in eight hours when using a 110V household outlet, according to Green Car Reports. The Leaf has a power window lift function that allows for easy entry and exit by raising the glass window three inches by pressing a button. The vehicle has lithium ion batteries with some nickel-metal hydride batteries supporting the electric motor.
The roadster can reach 60 mph in 3.9 seconds and holds a top speed of over 200 mph, according to NHTSA. The vehicle has a range of about 250 miles on a single charge and can be charged using any 110V household outlet or charger, according to Green Car Reports. The lithium-ion batteries were also specially designed by engineers at Tesla so they can store more energy than traditional lithium-ion batteries and can hold a charge longer than standard batteries, according to Edmunds.com.
The list of the top 10 electric cars is a strong representation of the best electric vehicles on the road today. The vehicles were chosen because they are safe, fast, spacious, and have great performance.