Autocar took four electric vehicles on a group test to see which one stands above the rest; the Hyundai Ioniq, Volkswagen E-Golf, BMW i3 and the Nissan Leaf.
The market for pure electric and hybrid vehicles have been on the rise and globally, this segment sold more than 600,000 cars this year for a 50% increase. But most of them will be used predominantly in urban settings and they editors took that into account in their test drive. Their route will span across north London and go through some congested streets.
Nabbing first place is the BMW i3 94Ah at £27,830 a pop after subtracting the £4500 Govt grant. Its carbonfibre and composite body makes it 150kg lighter than the Ioniq. The 168bhp motor give the i3 an average 0-62mph sprint time of 7.3 seconds and a facelift earlier this year gave it a larger 33kWh battery. One downfall is its limited cargo and rear passenger space, thus reducing the vehicle’s practicality.
Runner up is Volkswagen’s e-Golf, maybe due to the manufacturer playing it safe instead of reinventing the wheels and gear selector. Smaller than the Ioniq, it has an easier time navigating through gaps and the navigation system with intuitive controls will set your mind at ease when a turn is missed. Above all others, the golf’s ride quality is the best.
Coming in third is the new Hyudai Ioniq Electric Premium SE and being almost 250mm longer than the e-Golf, the Ioniq is especially spacious and able to comfortably accommodate adults in the back along with plenty of cargo. It may not be as light as the BMW i3, but the range topping trim is still lighter than both the Gold and Leaf. In fact, the Ioniq is cheaper, has better battery range and it can accelerated from 0-62 mph faster than the other two EVs. Cabin noise is minimal and though it may not be the most agile EV on the lineup, it does have switchable battery regeneration settings.
Bringing up the rear is the Nissan Leaf 30kWh Tekna and it’s described as an "original electric poster boy shows how far rivals have moved the game on.” Though it’s coming in last, the Leaf is still a useable vehicle with adequate cabin space.
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