There might have been more early electric vehicle advocates had the first EVs not all been small hatchbacks. There’s not much point in picking a car with the intention of being eco-friendlier if you then have to take a second vehicle to carry all the family’s junk.
As the range of EVs on offer in the UK grows, so do the cars themselves and now you can pick from a selection of electric SUVs – much better for the driver who wants to cart a load of stuff around on battery power.
The fundamental design of the vehicles in question – tall, big and heavier than a neat hatchback or saloon – means that you won’t necessarily get as much in the way of range and efficiency in a battery SUV as you would in some other body styles. However, they make up for it in practicality and family friendliness.
There aren’t loads of them, but enough that you have a choice. Here are the main contenders to choose from.
The budget MG ZS EV
‘Budget’ is a relative term when it comes to the world of electric SUVs – they all command a premium thanks to their tech and newness – but the MG ZS EV is one of the more affordable options out there.
The compromises are the slightly less plush cabin and the range – it only manages an official range of 163 miles. If that is enough for you, and it should be for many people’s weekly needs, then you get some other benefits. It starts at less than £30,000 and you should be able to find a competitive monthly lease deal too.
The ultimate Tesla Model X
The one thing the Tesla Model X is not is cheap. It’s brutally quick, can seat as many as seven passengers and it comes with vast amounts of tech and clever. Tesla fans rave about the huge 17-inch touchscreen and the upward-opening doors are eye-catching to say the least.
It has a decent range – 314 miles is the longest you can get in an electric SUV – but it will cost you close to £90,000 for the cheapest model so it is a statement more than a shortcut to saving money by going electric.
The understated Mercedes-Benz EQC
Take a quick glance at the Mercedes EQC and you’d be hard pushed to tell it’s an electric car. Great for some that aren’t taken by some of the more in-your-face SUVs on this list. It still offers a stylish and tech-laden cabin, though, and it is really quiet on the move. The numbers? A 259-mile range and pricing from around £65,000.
The eye-catching DS 3 Crossback E-Tense
The DS 3 Crossback E-Tense – big name, bold looks. There’s no missing the DS with its big grille and interior that features diamond shapes aplenty.
It does the basics well though, with a range of 206 miles and 0-62mph in a nippy 8.7 seconds.
The all-round Kia e-Niro
If going electric is enough of a leap and you don’t want to commit to any sort of extreme statement then the Kia e-Niro is a solid bet. It has a practical and family-friendly interior, a brilliant warranty and provides plenty of space for four.
It starts at around £35,000 and you get a range of 280 miles for your money.
The sporty Jaguar I-Pace
Jaguar’s electric SUV is more a coupe than a big upright off-roader, and it is the brand’s first fully electric model. Its looks might not be everyone’s first choice, but they are definitely eye-catching and a refreshing change for anyone that doesn’t want a typical SUV.
It backs up the sporty looks with a 0-60mph time of 4.5 seconds. Resist the urge to test that out regularly and you might get closer to the official range of 292 miles.
The stylish compact Hyundai Kona Electric
Hyundai offers you a choice with its small Kona, as there are two battery options to pick from. The 39kWh version might be cheaper but the range is just 180 miles. The 64kWh model pushes this up to 278 miles and is the more compelling option.
You get loads of kit, a stylish interior and front end and it is smooth to drive. You could do a lot worse than the Kona for your first EV SUV.
The all-wheel drive Audi E-Tron
There are actually two versions of the Audi E-Tron – the standard model and the more coupe-like E-Tron Sportback. The basic E-Tron is the one that looks more like a ‘normal’ SUV, and it offers a couple of different versions – the 50 with 312hp and the 55 with 408hp. The ranges for the two are up to 191 miles and 234 miles respectively – not the best but not the worst either.
It’s stunning in the cabin, has four-wheel drive on every model and has smart tech like cameras instead of door mirrors. It might stand out, but it doesn’t really shout EV like some others.
Before trading in, it helps to know what your current car is worth. So many don’t know the value of their car when trying to sell it – so don’t get hung out to dry. You can check how much your old car’s worth online for free on a few different sites. We use the Parkers car valuation tool, but whichever way you check, make sure you get the best for your current motor so you can have the most to spend on your new electric SUV.