The best electric cars of 2022

Kia EV6 parked on side of road
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Choosing between the best electric cars is harder than ever, thanks to the influx of quality zero-emission vehicles hitting the roads. 2022 has already seen the launch of the likes of the Ford F-150 Lightning, Kia EV6 and others helping to advance the cause of electrification.

No longer are electric cars the outliers, and these days there are countless impressive electric cars out on the road. Tesla might be the best known all-electric carmaker, but its far from the only player in the business. In fact several automakers have multiple electric car models to choose from.

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.

Granted there's a lot you need to decide on before you choose an electric car. Including whether you should opt for one of the cheapest electric cars, or if the model you want is one of the few electric cars still eligible for the federal tax credit. Plus, if you're still really struggling, ber sure to check out our guide to 11 electric cars with the longest range and our guide to whether you should buy an EV or hybrid.

Here, then, are the best electric cars right now. 

Kia EV6 parked on side of road

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Specifications

Price: From $40,900
Range: 310 miles
0 to 60 mph: 5.2 seconds
Drive: AWD; RWD
Availability: On sale now

Reasons to buy

+
Striking design
+
Up to 310 miles of range
+
Comfortable seating
+
Cool lighting
+
Lots of great tech

Reasons to avoid

-
No rear wiper
-
View out the back a bit limited

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.

In our time with the car, we were happy to see Kia has outfitted the EV6 with a stylish exterior, and a smart interior that's bursting with class and hi-tech features. Not to mention the 350 kW charging, 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

Nissan Leaf 2022best value awards badge

(Image credit: Nissan)

Specifications

Price: From $27,400
Range: 226
0 to 60: 7.4 seconds
Drive: FWD
Availability: Available Now

Reasons to buy

+
Cheapest electric car in the US
+
ePedal one-pedal driving mode
+
ProPilot driver assistance software
+
Roomy interior with Android Auto and CarPlay support

Reasons to avoid

-
40 kWh model has limited range
-
CHAdeMO rapid charger

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  $27,800 — and that's before you take federal and state incentives into account. In fact, the Nissan Leaf is one of just nine electric cars to still be eligible for the federal tax credit — meaning it can cost as little as $20,300

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

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Specifications

Price: 62,990
Range: 330 miles
0 to 60 mph: 3.5 seconds
Drive: AWD
Availability: Now

Reasons to buy

+
Lots of storage space
+
Autopilot as standard, FSD available
+
250kW Supercharging available

Reasons to avoid

-
No cheaper standard range model on sale
-
No Apple CarPlay or Android Auto support

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 popular, but if there's one thing we've learned driving them it's that Elon Musk's cars are an acquired taste.

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

Ford F-150 Lightning parked outside in parking lot

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Specifications

Price: from $46,974
Range: 320 miles
0 to 60 mph: 3.8 seconds
Drive: AWD
Availability: On sale now

Reasons to buy

+
Impressive Range
+
Vehicle-to-load support
+
Best Driving F-150 
+
Compatible with legacy truck accessories

Reasons to avoid

-
DC Fast charges at 150kW
-
Range destroyed by towing
-
Paltry forward visibility 

The age of the electric truck is already kicking off, and Ford may have just perfected the formula right out of the gate with the F-150 Lightning. Ford's F-Series trucks have been the best-selling vehicles in America for decades, so the pressure was on to get this one right. Fortunately Ford has taken everything people love about the regular F-150 and given it an all-electric boost.

Not only does the pickup look and drive almost identically to its gasoline and hybrid-powered siblings, it's got all the same features — and more. A spacious frunk, more power outlets than you can handle, the BlueCruise autonomous driving system,  230-320 miles of range, and a drive that is smoother and sturdier than gasoline could offer. 

So if you want an electric truck, and are willing to handle the lengthy wait period, the F-150 Lightning is the one for you. Especially since it's eligible for the federal EV tax credit.

Read our full Ford F-150 Lightning review (opens in new tab)

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Specifications

Price: $43,990
Range: 358 miles
0 to 60 mph: 3.1 seconds
Drive: RWD, AWD
Availability: Available now

Reasons to buy

+
Forward-looking features
+
Over-the-air updates
+
Good range for the price

Reasons to avoid

-
Distracting center-only instrument display
-
No Apple CarPlay or Android Auto support

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

(Image credit: Polestar)

Specifications

Price: From $45,900
Range: 270 miles
0 to 60 mph: 4.6 seconds
Drive: RWD / AWD
Availability: Now

Reasons to buy

+
270+ miles of range
+
Enjoyable and dynamic driving characteristics
+
Android Automotive OS

Reasons to avoid

-
Apple CarPlay support is still not implemented
-
Adaptive Cruise Control is not standard
-
RWD is slow off the line

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

Side view of Hyundai IONIQ 5

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Specifications

Price: From $39,700
Range: 300 miles
0 to 60 mph: 5.2 seconds
Drive: RWD/AWD
Availability: Now

Reasons to buy

+
Great looks
+
Tons of tech
+
Practical design
+
Excellent performance
+
Solid range

Reasons to avoid

-
Expensive to buy
-
No rear wiper

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)

(Image credit: Ford)

Specifications

Price: $56,200
Range: 300 miles
0 to 60 mph: 6.1 seconds
Drive: RWD
Availability: Now

Reasons to buy

+
Sports car styling
+
Over-the-air updates

Reasons to avoid

-
Not really a Mustang

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

What to look for in an electric car

Why you can trust Tom's Guide Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

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.

Next: Here's how you can keep your electric car's battery healthy.

Tom Pritchard
Automotive Editor

Tom is the Tom's Guide's Automotive Editor, which means he can usually be found knee deep in stats the latest and best electric cars, or checking out some sort of driving gadget. It's long way from his days as editor of Gizmodo UK, when pretty much everything was on the table. He’s usually found trying to squeeze another giant Lego set onto the shelf, draining very large cups of coffee, or complaining that Ikea won’t let him buy the stuff he really needs online. 

  • kep55
    No Android auto or Apple car play. BIG FLIPPIN' DEAL! Neither do my 2008 Sky or 2014 Lincoln MKZ but guess what? I plug my cell in and, VOILA!, Amazon Music, Google Play, Accuradio, etc.
    Reply
  • WatUpWitDat
    A longer range is great but what about charging times.
    Reply
  • Ruffroc
    😂😂😂 this article is a Joke!!! Two of the cars you can't own right now and haven't been tested. Another is out of the price range of most people and has a gas engine. All but one has a charging network built to support the vehicle that was created as a service and not profit that is significantly cheaper than competing charging networks. There is more way the Model Y and new S aren't on this list.
    Reply
  • wils2021
    I bought a Model Y after looking at several of these cars. I rejected all Volvos/Polestars because their navigation is inferior to Tesla, as is their range, and charging network. No serious review would come to these conclusions.
    Reply
  • kungfujoe
    Ruffroc said:
    😂😂😂 this article is a Joke!!! Two of the cars you can't own right now and haven't been tested. Another is out of the price range of most people and has a gas engine. All but one has a charging network built to support the vehicle that was created as a service and not profit that is significantly cheaper than competing charging networks. There is more way the Model Y and new S aren't on this list.
    While I agree that an article at a URL of "best-electric-cars-today" shouldn't list cars that aren't yet available, which of these vehicles do you believe has a gas engine? You note that one "is out of the price range of most people and has a gas engine," which suggests you're talking about either Porsche's Taycan Turbo S or Lucid's Air Dream Edition, the two most expensive vehicles in the article, but both are fully electric. As far as I know, all 8 others on the list are also fully electric.

    The Model Y is #8 on the list of 10. The S and X are suspiciously absent given that the list includes vehicles that are more expensive than both, as well as the generally-disappointing e-Tron.
    Reply