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What are the best 5 Small Electric Cars

by | Aug 11, 2021 | All Articles, Electric Vehicles, Reviews | 0 comments

Overall Average Score for the Best 5 Small Electric Cars

Whether we like it or not, choosing an electric vehicle is a choice we will all have to make sooner or later. To help ease the burden, we are putting together a series of articles to help you make better choices without trawling the internet. First up we’re looking at the small electric cars currently available.

To work out which ones are the best, we have taken a cross-sample of SEVEN of the most prominent review sites when searching for “small electric cars” on Google. We have then worked out an average of all the scores handed to all the small cars across these website and come up with an Overall Average Score  – giving us our top 5 based on the results.

So strap yourself in and find out which are the best 5 small electric cars out there at the moment….

No. 5 – Peugeot e-208 (Averaged 4.10 / 5)

Peugeot e-208

The Peugeot e-208 is one of the more established small electric cars currently on the road and it featured prominently in the “best of” reviews we looked at (5 of the 7).

The Plus Points

In the reviews where the Peugeot e-208 featured, the main plus points highlighted are;

AutoExpress Youthful, energetic and familiar feel | Easy to Charge | Good to drive | Excellent looks | Tech-savvy interior
AutoCar Good usable battery range | Pleasant, generally inviting interior | Performance and drivability | Comfortable ride
Parkers Handsome design and styling | Familiar driving experience | Reassuring range | Identical practicality
TopGear Looks | Interior | Better range than most electric superminis
CarBuyer Low running costs | Stylish design | Punchy performance

The common themes here being the stylish looks, it’s familiarity, it’s interior and the element of fun it brings in it’s driving performance.

Other complimentary comments

What Stops It Being The Best?

From the reviews we checked though – there were 2 things that seemed to be holding it back compared to the other leaders in it’s class; it’s range (WLTP range is 211 miles) and slightly limited space in the rear.

Our Verdict

If you are looking for small electric car then the Peugeot e-208 is a great choice if you need something stylish, with low running costs, that is tech-savy, easy to charge and predominantly for localised use. 

Find out more about the Peugeot e-208 models on our vehicle guide.

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No. 4 – Honda e (Averaged 4.18 / 5)

honda e

The Honda e will perhaps be the “surprise package” of the bunch for many (and it certainly was to us!) It featured in 4 of the “best of” articles we looked at – and it’s high scores across the reviews means it features in our this top 5.

The Plus Points

For the reviews that we looked at – the main plus points were;

AutoCar Stylish | Genuine Compactness | Urban Agility | Zippy performance
DrivingElectric.com Great to drive | Packed with equipment | Striking looks inside and out
Top Gear A dash like no other | Irresistible looks | Tidy handling | Excellent City driving
CarBuyer Charming retro looks | Nippy acceleration | Hi-tech interior

The retro looks inside and out of the Honda e mean that it stands out – and in the case of the reviews we looked at – for all the right reasons. Another stand-out factor was how well the car drives and handles in city driving conditions. The tech features also garnished a positive response.

WHAT STOPS IT BEING THE BEST?

There are a couple of main factors which impact on the Honda e’s scoring, stopping it from scooping the best small electric car plaudits. These are chiefly it’s price (compared to others in it’s field) it’s range and it’s lack of space in the rear and boot.

Our Verdict

Ironically, the looks are the one thing that would put us off. However, looks are subjective and the quality build and performance – especially around town – make this a great small electric car for localised use. 

The range could be an issue if you need to venture further afield – but for businesses where the day-to-day journeys are under 30 miles, the Honda e is a reliable, strong performer, packed full of great kit.

Find out more about the Honda e in our vehicle guide.

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No. 3 – BMW i3 (Averaged 4.39 / 5)

BMW i3

The BMW i3 is pretty much an antique in the world of electric cars. First surfacing almost a decade ago now, it would be easy to think the i3 has stood still. Well, it hasn’t…and it featured prominently in 4 of the “best of” reviews we looked at.

The PLus Points

AutoCar Genuinely innovative design | Brilliantly responsive in town | Excellent to drive
HeyCar Great to Drive | Decent Range | Eye-catching design | Feels BMW quality
Parkers Futuristic style | Smooth, electric drive | Excellent acceleration | Tight turning circle
TopGear Design | Great to drive | Easily seat 4 people

BMW’s small electric car comes with heaps of praise across the reviews. It’s drive, it’s interior and it’s sense of space (for a small car) are all common themes.

For a car that is designed to whizz about the city and local areas, the drive is generally described as unlike anything else (in one case it is claimed to be the best EV to drive until you hit the Tesla’s.)

WHAT STOPS IT BEING THE BEST?

It’s badge – or should I say, the premium that comes with it’s badge. For a car this good you will have to be prepared to pay for it. The question is can you get something nearly as good for less cost if cost is the overall deciding factor.

OUR VERDICT

The BMW i3 might be the “old guard” of the small electric car world, but not many of the “new guard” have captured it’s drive quality yet. The i3’s recent refreshes are keeping it amongst the leaders in it’s field. With an interior quality to match the drive quality you are getting a lot of car. It’s whether you are willing to pay the price for that.

Find out more about the BMW i3 in our vehicle guide.

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No. 2 – Fiat 500 Electric (Averaged 4.47 / 5)

Fiat 500 electric

The Fiat 500 is one of the most popular small cars of all time, so it comes as little surprise that the electric version is too. So what are the reviews saying about this popular little car?

The plus Points

AutoExpress Great real world range | Value for money | Stylish
HeyCar Stylish & Retro Charm | Some versions will cover up to 199-miles on a single charge | Easy to Drive | Packed with useful tech
Parkers Wonderfully stylish | Quick & Fun to drive | Cheap to buy and run | Long range for a small car
DrivingElectric.com Fun to drive | Decent real-world range | Good value mid-range models

All of the reviews we looked at said the same about the Fiat 500 Electric – stylish, great value for money and great range for a small car – and when you have a small electric car ticking all of those boxes, it’s hard to look past it.

WHAT STOPS IT BEING THE BEST?

The scores couldn’t have been much closer between the Fiat 500 Electric and the no.1 car (revealed below) – but the reviews seem to feel the slight lack of rear space and practicality in the Fiat is the differentiating factor.

Our Verdict

As we’ve said, if you are looking for a stylish, retro feel small car that’s cheap to buy and then run – the Fiat 500 Electric is one of the best choices for local journeys – and a bit further afield if needed.

Find out more about the Fiat 500 Electric in our Vehicle Guide.

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No. 1 – Renault Zoe (Averaged 4.54 / 5)

Renault Zoe

And so, to the best small electric car on the market (based on average scores). The Renault Zoe.

One of the longest established EV’s on the market – the first version appearing in 2013 – the latest incarnation of the Zoe featured in all the “best of” reviews we looked at and highly in 5 of them – scoring really well across the board. So what makes the Zoe the stand-out small electric car?

THE plus POINTS

AutoExpress Refined and relaxing drive | Well equipped | Spacious cabin
Heycar Decent space inside | Excellent range | Slightly raised driving position | Excellent design features
DrivingElectric Smart interior with ethical materials | Loads of equipment | Long driving range
TopGear Efficiency and range | Stylish interior | Option to lease battery or buy outright | Free wallbox
CarBuyer Plenty of great deals available | Well equipped as standard | Up to 245-mile range

Like the Fiat 500 Electric, the Renault Zoe is affordable, well-equipped, stylish and comes with an excellent range (the best of the ones in the top 5 at 245miles). With practicality that pretty much matches the Clio, it just offers that little bit more than the others – literally. 

WHAT STOPS IT GETTING 5/5?

The top models can be a little pricey, whilst the fast-charging is an optional extra. However, with the amount of range and overall quality of the car, the Zoe scores the best across the board.

OUR VERDICT

The Renault Zoe is the best across the board, and on reflection – that’s about right. It doesn’t particularly ‘stand out’ above the others for style, or drive quality, or interior quality – but instead it just does EVERYTHING very well – and that’s enough to give it the highest scores.

And for this car, that’s about right.

It’s a very good small electric car and certainly the one out of these 5 that we would recommend.

To find out more about the Renault Zoe visit our vehicle guide.

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