About a decade ago, you’d be hard-pressed to name more than two types of fully-electric cars on the market that you might actually want to buy. They were novelties and gimmicks and not fit for daily use.

But over time, manufacturers have improved the engine technology and overall car technology to the point where electric cars can offer some impressive returns.

Here are what I think are five of the best electric cars that are currently available in the UK.

Even though you sound like you’re doing an impression of the Yorkshire accent when you say the full name of the car out loud, the E Up is a pretty nifty little car. This full-electric version is a hell of a lot quieter than the conventional engined one and you get a high quality powerplant in the battery which puts out a respectable 82PS. The downside is it’s obviously pretty expensive if you were to buy outright, which is why car leasing is a pretty good option to try with this car.

158 viewed this car UP Hatchback View Gallery
8.4

Volkswagen UP Hatchback

35 derivatives available

  • Doors: 3 - 5
  • Engine: 0.0 - 1.0
  • Fuel: P, E
  • Body: Hatchback
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: None

From £131.71 Per Month

Initial Rental: £790.26 inc VAT

If you can stomach the risk of the battery exploding and catching fire (which has happened to a couple of Teslas in the past), then the Model X is a relatively attractive electric car to consider. The standard 75kWh battery generates 328bhp, lets you hit 60 from zero in 2.6 seconds, with a top speed of 155mph. A big draw of the Tesla is the Tesla Motors Supercharger Network that’s spread throughout the country, letting you charge for free too.

45 viewed this car Model X Hatchback View Gallery
7.7

Tesla Model X Hatchback

3 derivatives available

  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 0.0
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: Hatchback
  • Drive: A
  • CO2: None

From £959.99 Per Month

Initial Rental: £5,759.94 inc VAT

The Zoe is Renault’s attempt at solving the three big problems of current electric cars – the fact they’re expensive, have a limited driving range and don’t perform amazingly at high speeds. And it does a fine job at what it sets out to do.

A great alternative to a high-spec diesel supermini, the Renault Zoe gives you a pretty decent R110 electric motor with a 41kWh Z.E. 40 battery, capable of 186 miles on a single charge.

93 viewed this car ZOE Hatchback View Gallery
7.1

Renault ZOE Hatchback

10 derivatives available

  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 0.0
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: Hatchback
  • Drive: A
  • CO2: None

From £200.83 Per Month

Initial Rental: £1,204.98 inc VAT

Okay, this isn’t technically an electric car, but it’s worth including in this section because it’s very similar to electric-powered vehicles.

One of the world’s first commercially available, hydrogen-powered cars, the Toyota Mirai is powered by a hydrogen fuel cell – pretty cutting edge technology. This type of fuel provides a much further distance range than electric batteries and offers 113kw of power.

It offers refinement and innovation, so if you’re looking to be at the top of emerging trends, you’d do worse to consider the Mirai.

The world’s best-selling electric car, with an impressive 283,000 units sold since its launch (pretty good for an electric), the Nissan Leaf divides opinion, but I think, it’s an incredibly practical option if you’re looking for a ‘normal’ electric car that you won’t feel ashamed driving.

Nissan claims that you’ll get 235 miles range out of this generation of the Leaf – an impressive offering that massively improves practicality. Leasing payments should be really affordable too!

80 viewed this car Leaf Hatchback View Gallery
8.0

Nissan Leaf Hatchback

7 derivatives available

  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 0.0
  • Fuel: E
  • Body: Hatchback
  • Drive: A
  • CO2: None

From £288.62 Per Month

Initial Rental: £2,597.61 inc VAT