Electric cars may not be all the rage at the moment, but you will notice an increasing number of them on British roads. The government wants you to buy one and has some incentives to offer, but you may still be concerned with the overall price. So what are some of the cheapest electric cars in the UK today? Here you will find a range of different options from some of the leading manufacturers.
Hyundai Ioniq Electric
Many consumers are concerned about practicality when they think about buying an electric car. They are worried that it may simply run out of juice without any charging facility nearby. Yet the boffins at Hyundai have addressed this head-on in the revised Ioniq Electric, and make sure that the price remains in the most affordable electric cars category as well.
The latest version of the Ioniq (first launched in 2015) now features a much more powerful battery, giving more power and, crucially, an official range of 193 miles. It has many sophisticated driver aids as standard, is reasonably responsive and has plenty of room for four adults on board.
This front-wheel-drive mini SUV has a top speed just north of 100 miles an hour. While it may not be one of the absolute cheapest electric cars, you can pick up an Ioniq from £30,950.
Japanese manufacturer Mazda joins the all-electric party with the MX-30. They've positioned it as a small to mid-size SUV, and broadly based it on the successful CX-30.
If you're looking for comfort and a smooth ride, this is undoubtedly an option, and it's quite responsive around town. In fact, Mazda's offering may be more suited for those who intend to stay in an urban environment, as this solution may not have as much "usable" range as some of its competitors. However, if you plan well and take advantage of rapid chargers, you can get 80% of your power in about half an hour.
Four different versions are available, and all of them are front-wheel-drive. The appropriately named First Edition is available in March, from £27,495.
It's fair to say that many small cars are difficult to tell apart these days. Still, if you're looking for something that is instantly recognisable and in the form of an electric vehicle, MINI has the answer. In the Electric, you get a car that looks exactly the same as its conventional counterpart and one that feels very similar behind the wheel.
In many respects, not much has changed from the original Austin Morris version of the '60s. There's a wheel in each corner which makes this design so remarkably stable and easy to manoeuvre and it is still the ultimate city car. Today, however, using that instant electric power, you've got something that is even zippier when you're on your way to the superstore.
Of course, don't expect a great deal of space in this design type, but there's plenty of creature comforts and creative flair onboard. There are three levels available, so you can choose a full leather interior and a premium stereo, should you wish.
The MINI Electric may only get you 145 miles on a full charge, but you can get one from £25,100, including the UK government grant.
MG ZS EV
MINI and MG used to be in the same stable at one time, and the latter was undoubtedly a force to be reckoned with. Today, however, a Chinese conglomerate controls the marque, and it has just released its first EV.
The all-electric ZS is a very reasonable entry in the cheapest electric cars category, and it's a good all-rounder with its crossover appeal. Inside, you won't be disappointed, and in the slightly more premium of the two versions, you get a panoramic sunroof, leather effect, heated front seats, and an upgraded sound system.
Space-wise, the ZS is adequate for its category, but rearseat passengers will feel comfortable enough. The electric motor gives you 140 hp and a top speed of 87 mph, and there is good news on the pricing front. After the government grant, you can pick one up from £25,495.
If you don't have a family to worry about and are just looking for eco-friendly transportation at a great price, you may find yourself in a Twizy. Renault insists it has an "eye-catching design" and the French company is a master of understatement. It's certainly not for everyone, but at a starting price of £11,695, you're not going to beat the Twizy on a list of the cheapest electric cars in the UK in 2020.
Of course, this is a pure city car, and it only has a 62-mile range. But you won't have any problem navigating those narrow streets for parking and might inject some fun into the daily commute.
Like the MINI, Twizy has a wheel at each corner for ultimate drivability, and you will sit directly in front of a (small) rear seat passenger.
If you are looking for something larger, with more range and practicality, Renault can also offer you the Zoe, but it's more than twice the price as well...
Smart EQ ForTwo
Perhaps the Twizy is simply too small or looks too much like a go-kart. In this case, why not consider the EQ ForTwo, from Smart? It certainly has a more traditional look, is very manoeuvrable and perfectly suited for city driving.
For 2021, the company has redesigned this EQ, both outside and inside. Aerodynamic aids and new wheels add to a more friendly interior, with a revised infotainment system expected soon. The "Brabus" upgrade even has a rear diffuser, side skirts and a front spoiler.
You may only get 80 miles on a full charge but can get an 80% top-up in 45 minutes. Pricewise, the EQ ForTwo starts at £14,450, which places it very close to the top of the cheapest electric cars in the UK.
The Corsa has been around since the 1980s, and now you can get an electric one. It's a hatchback that looks just as familiar as the petrol-engined version, and, according to the manufacturer, you will get 209 miles on a full charge.
If you're looking to buy British, with something nicely equipped, predictable and middle-of-the-road, the Corsa-e range starts at £26,640.