The 10 Best Electric Cars of 2020

10 minutes Published: 28/09/2020

We Brits are slowly but surely embracing electric cars, despite what your petrol-guzzling boy racer mates might say. 

Electric cars have the performance, efficiency, and the range to be practical for the vast majority of drivers.

It’s understandable that electric cars didn’t have a huge initial impact in the UK. For a long time, it felt like you had the option of a £20k Renault Zoe or an £80k Tesla Model S, with nothing in between. 

If you didn’t want a small car and didn’t fancy selling your house for an ultra-luxurious executive car, you were out of luck.

Today, this is no longer the case, and virtually every car manufacturer has jumped on the electric bandwagon. Whether you’re a fan of SUVs or sports cars, there’s an electric option for you. 

Why you should consider an electric vehicle

Power: Picture a car that can accelerate from 0-60 in 1.9 seconds. What are you thinking of? Petrol-guzzling Ferrari perhaps? Wrong. It’s a fully electric Tesla Roadster. This isn’t a one-off either. In most cases, electric vehicles actually perform better than their petrol/diesel counterparts. 

Environment: Most electric cars produce zero harmful emissions, so they have no carbon footprint. This lets you do your part to protect the environment (so we're not all living underwater in 100 years)!

Fuel economy: One of the biggest benefits of an electric car is the superior fuel economy. It costs around £4 to charge a modern electric car for a 100 mile journey, whereas it would cost a petrol/diesel car around £14. That’s 70% more expensive than the electric option!

Hopefully, these benefits are enough to convince you to leave the petrol pump behind. However, with such a wide range of electric cars now available, it can be hard to find the right car for you!

To speed up the process, we’ve compiled a list of our top 10 electric cars that are available in 2019.

Let’s get started with the…

Not quite ready to go fully-electric? Check out some of our best hybrid cars. If you still want a traditional combustible engine but want to start your path towards zero-emission driving, check out our best low emission cars and our most economical cars

1. Nissan Leaf

RRP: £26,435 - £39,340 | From £244.25 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: N/A
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: Hatchback
  • Drive: A
  • CO2:

Pros

  • Cheap as chips to run.

  • Nimble around narrow city streets.

Cons

  • Not exactly exciting to drive.

  • A lot of people won’t like the cars exterior design.

The Nissan LEAF might just have been the first mass-market electric vehicle to not look like an oversized go-kart. While the first iteration was a pretty decent car for the price, the second generation is even better, featuring an updated design and better range. 

With a plethora of electric cars now on the market, the LEAF is still on the cheaper end of the spectrum. There are two models to choose from -  the standard option and the Nissan LEAF E+.

The standard Nissan LEAF has a range up to 168 Miles from its 40 kWh battery whilst the advanced Nissan LEAF with a 62 kWh battery feature a range up to 239 Miles – which is great for longer journeys and commuting.

If you opt for the E+, you’ll have the maximum driving range possible, whereas the standard is significantly less practical. If you just want an electric car for the daily commute though, the E+ is probably unnecessary and not worth the extra cost. 

2. Renault ZOE Electric Hatchback

RRP: £29,115 - £33,940 | From £179.99 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: N/A
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: Hatchback
  • Drive: A
  • CO2:

Pros

  • Nippy and fun to drive.

  • 30 minutes on a fast charger nets you nearly 100 miles of driving.

Cons

  • The fast charger isn't standard!

  • Lack of rear space makes carrying 4 adults an uncomfortable experience.

Europe’s best selling electric car, the Renault Zoe, looks a bit like a smaller Clio with an electric motor - this isn't a bad thing.

Renault has upped their game with their design recently and this car is a great example of this. The Zoe’s interior sports a huge touchscreen, and it looks like an upmarket affair all round.

In terms of driving, the Zoe is nippy around town and has a long-range for driving, as well as being full of tech. 

With an affordable price point and a great driving experience, it wouldn't be a surprise if the Zoe remains a bestseller for a few more years.

3. BMW I3

RRP: £34,015 - £42,075 | From £295.91 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: N/A
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: Hatchback
  • Drive: A
  • CO2: 14g/km

Pros

  • More powerful than other similarly sized electrics.

  • The car feels very upmarket inside and out.

Cons

  • A fair bit pricier than competitors.

  • Rear/boot space is a bit disappointing.

When you hear BMW, you might think about the many times you’ve been violently overtaken by an aggressive driver. 

This is likely the stereotypical boy racer on the motorway, who has one hand on the wheel as he revs his 3-Series up to high heavens, with another on the iDrive infotainment system (with the odd sleight-of-hand manoeuvres to send a Snapchat, of course).  

A subcompact electric car probably doesn’t come to mind when you think of BMW.

The i3 is BMW’s first all-electric offering and has been around since 2013. While the BMW i3 undoubtedly looks like an electric car, it has a fairly posh design. Of course, the i3 is still a BMW, so you know it doesn't compromise on performance. With an overabundance of electric power, you’ll have no problem overtaking on the motorway.

4. Tesla Model X

RRP: £68,980 - £148,350 | From £800.27 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: N/A
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: A
  • CO2:

Pros

  • Can fit 7 people.

  • Looks like something Bruce Wayne might drive.

Cons

  • You could buy a flat for the same price.

  • Tesla’s fast-charging ports are still rare in the UK.

Tesla - now we're talking! Undoubtedly the first manufacturer to make electric cars seem cool, Elon Musk’s Tesla is a highly desirable brand.

The Model X is Tesla's all-wheel-drive SUV model and offers a huge range on a single charge, as well as the use of Tesla’s ultra-fast charging points. As such, even the standard trim comes with a depressingly high price tag.  Good luck getting a bank loan for that. Or you could go for the cheaper Tesla Model 3

Of course, you’re getting some seriously fancy features for this price. Tesla's ‘AutoPilot’ mode promises to take the stress out of driving for you. 

Imagine sitting in traffic and just leaning back - no hunching over the steering wheel as you move a mere metre every 5 minutes. Yes, please!

Without a doubt, the Model X is one of the best electric cars money can buy.

5. Kia E-niro Electric Estate

RRP: £32,540 - £39,090 | From £298.38 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: N/A
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: Estate
  • Drive: A
  • CO2:

Pros

  • Tech offerings, even on the cheapest trim, are good.

  • The attractive electric SUV body styling will please most people.

Cons

  • Not very comfortable for the unlucky adults stuck in the rear seats.

  • Smooth but unexciting driving experience.

A lot of car-buyers are put off by the fact that most electric cars look like glorified city cars, but don’t have £80k sitting around for a Tesla! 

Kia recognised this and has fitted their popular small SUV crossover, the Kia Niro, with an electric engine. The Niro already had plenty of practicality, but with an electric engine, you can add dirt-cheap running costs to the mix. 

The E-Niro has really impressed car critics, offering a refined driving experience and an upmarket look at an affordable price point. Kia is also known as a particularly reliable brand, and all new cars come with a 7-year/100,000 mile warranty, which is industry-leading. 

6. Audi E-tron Sportback

RRP: £69,045 - £95,045 | From £629.99 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: N/A
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: Hatchback
  • Drive: A
  • CO2:

Pros

  • Great looking car - looks like an Audi!

  • Tech is up there with the best in class.

Cons

  • Incredibly expensive and out of reach for most.

  • Base trim is lacking in tech.

Terrible name aside, the Audi E-Tron is what you'd expect an Audi with a pure electric powertrain to look like. With an SUV body style and no gimmicky design choices, this car should please most fans of the German automaker’s fossil-fuel offerings. 

However, the eagle-eyed amongst you will notice something missing… side mirrors. Yep.

Instead, these are replaced with compact cameras and transmitted to a display screen in the 'cockpit'. This bold new feature is a strange one. Many will ask "why?!" and that's understandable. So, there’s maybe a few gimmicky design choices. 

Still, the E-Tron is the perfect electric option for devout Audi lovers and has the performance and style we’ve come to expect from this German manufacturer. 

Last but defiantly not least is the E-Tron's battery range which Audi have quoted as up to 252 miles (ca. 406 kilometres). This is on par with similar high specification electric vehicles such as the Mercedes EQC but not as good as the Tesla Model S with its 348 miles (ca. 560 kilometres) range.

7. Hyundai Kona Electric Hatchback

RRP: £29,440 - £41,445 | From £267.67 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: N/A
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: Crossover SUV
  • Drive: A
  • CO2:

Pros

  • Packed full of great tech at an affordable price.

  • Electric SUV - so has a high driving position.

Cons

  • The E-Niro has a better warranty. 

  • The interior feels a bit cheap.

Similar in style to the Kia E-Niro, the Hyundai Kona Electric is an affordable electric SUV option that will appeal to a lot of people with a modest budget.

The Kona has been well-received by car critics and offers a great crossover electric car that looks really good and is dirt-cheap to own. The cost of leasing is fairly affordable, too. 

Despite this, the Kona is a fantastic car if you can find one, and has all of the tech you’d ever need for a reasonable price. It’s sold out for a reason!

8. Jaguar I-pace

RRP: £63,440 - £74,940 | From £612.35 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: N/A
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: A
  • CO2:

Pros

  • Exterior design is big and bold - but it works!

  • Fun to drive.

Cons

  • Expensive for what you get.

  • The driving range is lower than some cheaper competitors.

It seems that more budget manufacturers have been paving the electric way: Kia, Renault, and Hyundai, for instance. 

What’s on offer for the posher folks, who wouldn't be seen dead in a car that’s worth less than £50k? The Jaguar i-Pace, of course, helping to keep your ego well-pampered.

Jokes aside, the Jaguar i-Pace is a great electric SUV. It's earned the British manufacturer some serious critical acclaim, winning three (!) categories at the 2019 World Car Awards, for World Car of the Year, World Car Design of the Year, as well as World Green Car. Not too shabby.

If you've got a taste for luxury, and the budget to match, then the Jaguar i-Pace is a great electric SUV. 

9. Mercedes EQC

RRP: £65,585 - £74,555 | From £556.38 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: N/A
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: A
  • CO2:

Pros

  • Very posh and refined interior.

  • Great fun to drive.

Cons

  • Could’ve been designed more efficiently.

  • Far too expensive.

The Mercedes EQC is an electric SUV heavily inspired by the Mercedes GLC. While the EQC is a good looking car, it's particularly heavy compared to competitors. 

For comparison, the Tesla Model X is a much bigger car, yet the Mercedes EQC is heavier! This is due to the EQC sharing the same unibody as the colossal Mercedes GLC.

This matters because it reduces the efficiency and range of the vehicle. Mercedes could easily have created a more efficient car had they built one from the ground up.

That being said, the range on the EQC isn't too shabby. Mercedes are targeting the long-distance driver as the EQC is fitted with an 85 kWh battery, which gives a claimed range of up to 259 miles (ca. 417 kilometers). 

And you’ll definitely end up putting the foot down. This SUV packs some serious power despite its weight and is a blast to drive. 

Whatever electric or hybrid car lease deals you are looking for, at LeaseFetcher we have you covered. We collect over 2 million prices from 20 of the very best UK leasing brokers to bring you the very best electric car lease deals.

10. Hyundai Ioniq

RRP: £32,895 - £35,895 | From £211.00 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: N/A
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: Hatchback
  • Drive: A
  • CO2:

Pros

  • The interior looks a lot more expensive than it is.

  • Decent space in the back seats.

Cons

  • While it's comfortable, the Ioniq is a bit boring to drive.

  • Not changed a whole lot since the first generation.

If you regularly take Ubers, you’ve definitely sat in this car already. 

The Ioniq is a great commuter car. It's ultra-comfortable to drive, cheap to run, and affordable to lease.

With great tech included even on standard trims, the Ioniq is a good option for those of us who budget-wise, are somewhere in the middle of the Renault Zoe and the posher Mercedes/Audi offerings! 

The Hyundai Ioniq Electric has a pretty good range, so it should be fine for the vast majority of commuters. 

Similar to the Toyota Prius, the Ioniq is a super safe and reliable car. With a five-star Euro NCAP crash test rating, you can rest easy knowing that you’re as safe as can be (when on the road that is!) 

Summary

Hopefully, we’ve convinced you that an electric car is a serious contender for your next new car. 

These days, there’s truly something for everyone, whether you fancy a cheap and cheerful car to get you around town, or a seriously luxurious electric SUV to lord over the city cars you pass on your commute. 

While electric cars have much cheaper running costs when compared to a diesel or petrol engine, they’re more expensive upfront. Thankfully, you can offset this by taking out a lease deal instead, giving you an affordable monthly payment for your environmentally friendly car! 

If the lack of charging ports around the UK worries you (range anxiety), check out our best hybrid cars or our full range of hybrid car lease deals. For those petrol and diesel lovers, opt for a more eco-friendly option by choosing one of our best low emission cars, or our most economical cars! And if you are set on an EV, look at all our electric car lease deals.