2022 is a big year for electric cars, with the likes of Ford F-150 Lightning just starting to hit the road. Yes, more electric vehicles are launching than ever before, and that makes choosing an EV harder than ever.
Once the outliers, and a rare sight on the road, EVs now seem to be just about everywhere. Plus, all the largest carmakers have some sort of EV either on sale, or on the way very soon. Chrysler has announced that its going all-electric by 2028, and GM is doing the same by 2035.
Whether it's Nissan, Kia or even VW, there's no shortage of zero emission vehicles right now. Whether you want a simple urban runabout or a performance EV, here are the best electric cars you can go out and order right now.
But in the here and now there are plenty of impressive EVs to choose from. Tesla has been impressing buyers with EV performance for years and there are electric luxury sedans, exotic supercars, compact commuters, and even pickup trucks coming this year.
Moreover, home charging stations have dropped in price from thousands of dollars to do-it-yourself models costing $600. It all represents solid progress on the electrification front.
Here, then, are the best electric cars right now.
And if you want to do a spot of future gazing, you can also take a look at our list of the most exciting electric vehicles coming in 2022. And keep an eye out for the Nissan Ariya 2023, a new electric SUV that impressed us during our first test drive. Also see our guide to 11 electric cars with the longest range and our guide to whether you should buy an EV or hybrid.
There's an awful lot to like about the Kia EV6. It may not be the fastest electric car out there, nor does it have the longest-lasting battery, but it has just about everything else you could hope for — including 310 miles of EPA rated range.
Kia has outfitted the EV6 with a stylish exterior, ultra-fast 350kW rapid charging, and a smart interior that's bursting with class and hi-tech features. That includes an augmented reality heads-up display, smart parking, vehicle-2-load capabilities, and 17.6 cubic feet of trunk space. That's without the seats being folded down too.
Combine all that with a very reasonable $40,900 starting price, and you have the recipe for an electric car that's almost perfect. In fact the only faut we can find is that the back window's a little small and there's no rear wipe.
Read our full Kia EV6 review
While not the most spectacular EV on the market, the Nissan Leaf is an ideal car for people new to EVs, or who simply don't want to spend a lot of money. The 2022 model of the car is even more appealing in that respect, since its starting price is just $27,400 — and that's before you take federal and state incentives into account.
The Leaf also offers a roomy interior with plenty of hi-tech options, including the semi-autonomous ProPilot driver assistance software, and the 'ePedal' that offers a one-pedal driving mode for those that want it. It also supports both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay.
There are downsides, mainly the fact that the cheaper 40 kWh battery models only offer 149 miles of EPA range. Likewise the Leaf includes a CHAdeMO rapid charger, rather than the CCS favored by every other automaker that isn't Tesla. But if you're looking for an EV that doesn't need to be too big, and you have a tight budget, this is one to consider.
Read our full 2022 Nissan Leaf review
The Tesla popularity contest was long-dominated by the Model 3 — on account of its solid performance and lower price tag. But the Model Y has swooped in and stolen its thunder. It may be slightly more expensive than the Model 3, but it makes up for that with practicality and interior space.
The Tesla Model Y has all the parts you need to make a Tesla, including up to 330 miles of range, a 3.5 second 0-60 time, Autopilot, access to the 250kW Tesla Supercharger network, and more. of course all the usual Tesla caveats apply, like the extreme minimalism and the fact everything is centralized in a single touchscreen display. Teslas are an acquired taste, after all.
If you want all the benefits of a spacious Tesla, without having to pay a Model X price tag, then the Model Y might be the EV for you.
Read our full Tesla Model Y review
Every car company in the world seems to be gunning for Tesla, but its Model 3 remains one of the best electric cars available, with excellent range, features, and a price that demonstrates that Teslas aren't just for the 1-percenters.
Indeed, the Tesla Model 3 is still one of the best mass-market electric car out there. The Model 3 can go up to 262 miles on a single charge (with the standard battery), and while this car is stubbier and plumper than Tesla's Model S, it's about half the price.
While critics point out that Tesla continues to overstate the technical abilities of its driver-assist Autopilot feature, we think it's still worthwhile, within limits. Software updates offer continual improvements, but if you want more range and better handling AWD, pricing on the Model 3 starts at $41,990.
Read our full Tesla Model 3 review
Polestar is a car company founded by Volvo, but kept as a completely independent entity. So while Polestar can benefit from its founders safety technology and other resources, it's free to push the boundaries of electric vehicle performance and engineering. Polestar 2 is the company's first five-door electric car, with a great mix of looks and safety.
Polestar 2 offers dual motor performance, alongside an EPA range of 270 miles per charg and a 0-60 time between 4.6 and seven seconds. It's not industry-leading, but it's still pretty impressive. Polestar also included an infotainment system based on Android Automotive OS, alongside self-cleaning headlights, a Harmon Kardon sound system, and Volvo's Pilot driver assistance system. That includes emergency braking and pedestrian detection, lane centering, and all the other bells and whistles you'd expect.
Read our full Polestar 2 review
If you're looking for a good all-round electric car, then the Hyundai IONIQ 5 is a great option. The SUV packs in loads of space for you, your family and whatever you may need to transport, and packs in an impressive 300 miles of range to get you where you need to go.
Better still the IONIQ 5 comes with plenty of tech options, should you want them. There's a built-in heads-up display, wireless charging, mood lighting, and up to 350 kW charging speeds.
Most importantly, however, is that the IONIQ 5 is fun to drive. Not only does it have the instant torque all EVs offer, it's a speedy beast that can jump from 0-60 in just 5.2 seconds. That may not be Tesla-level acceleration, but it isn't bad going - especially for an SUV.
Read our full Hyundai IONIQ 5 review (opens in new tab)
It may not be the Mustang you were expecting, but Ford's Mustang Mach-E is still the first all-electric car Ford has built. The SUV design might put some people off, but Ford has added a solid mix of technology and performance. That includes a 15.5-inch touchscreen, CarPlay and Android Auto support, and a luxury interior that should keep everyone happy.
It may not be as powerful as a Tesla Model X, or offer quite as much range as other electric cars, but it's still a great option for someone hoping to get all these features for a slightly lower price than the competition is asking for.
Still, Ford recently announced a new Mustang Mach-E GT model that takes things a step further. Boosting power from 346 hp to 460 hp and covering the 0-60 in 3.8 seconds (3r o.5 secs for the Performance Edition).
Read our full Ford Mustang Mach-E review
While not the fastest or most exciting EV out there, the VW ID.4 has proven itself to be a worthy purchase — in a stylish and subdued way. So you have a solid SUV pick, with a comfortable ride and autonomous driver assistance that is on par with other lower-priced electric vehicles.
The ID.4 also offers plenty of space for passengers and cargo, but without causing any discomfort in the process. It also makes for a solid getting around car, even if the ID.4 itself won't be turning any heads of passer's by. But with all that wrapped up into an affordable package, there's not much more you do need.
Read our full VW ID.4 review
What to look for in an electric car
Buying a new car is a very personal thing, and electric cars are no exception to that. What you want to look for is all very dependent on your circumstances and what you need the car to be able to do. That'll help you narrow things down and work out which EV is right for you.
If you have a large family, and need to move a bunch of kids and their stuff around on the regular, you're not going to want a compact vehicle. Likewise if you only need something for short trips and getting groceries home, you don't necessarily need a big long-range SUV.
As for range, it's easy to insist that more range is always better but that's not always the case. Having that option is helpful, but if you commute under 50 miles a day and rarely take long road trips, then a car with 300 miles of range isn't essential. It's nice to have if you can afford it, but it shouldn't put you off. The same is true for performance. super-quick cars are fun to drive, but how often are you going to take advantage of that?
Finally, supply chain issues may limit your choice and force your hand. Automakers have been struggling to produce cars, especially as demand picks up, but that doesn't mean they're impossible to buy. Some dealers and automakers will have new models in stock, you just won't get much choice in what features are included.