- Benefits of going electric
- Cheap electric cars 2022
- Prices starting at £20,000
Fun fact: the average electric car costs less to maintain than a standard petrol or diesel car.
Another fun fact: from 2030, the UK government is banning the sale of new petrol and diesel-powered cars.
Yep. And through the Plug-in Car Grant (PiCG), they'll even give you up to £1,500 towards the cost of electric vehicles that cost less than £32,000, meaning that there's never been a better time to plug in and ditch your old petrol or diesel car.
Indeed, with the relentless push towards a cleaner and greener climate, electric vehicle sales continue to pick up in the UK and we at LeaseLoco have compiled a list of the cheapest electric cars on sale on the market today.
Before we get to that, though, let's take a quick look at what electric cars can do for you and how much they cost in general.
How Much Do Electric Cars Usually Cost?
Upfront, electric vehicles generally tend to be a bit more expensive than their petrol and diesel counterparts. That initial price gap might seem a little off-putting for many, but when you factor in the lower running costs and not having to refuel at petrol stations etc., electric cars actually represent better value for money in the long term.
The reason why electric cars have a higher upfront cost is because they are produced in far fewer numbers and make use of fairly cutting edge technology, with car manufacturers having to invest more in their development because of that.
Will They Get Cheaper?
As electric battery prices are falling and the demand for electric cars continues to soar, car manufacturers will keep producing them in larger quantities, meaning that development costs fall and electric cars will gradually become more affordable for you.
That'll be especially the case once the government's ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel cars comes into effect from 2030. Some observers and commentators even go a step further by saying that electric cars could become as cheap as regular internal combustion-powered cars (diesel and petrol) by the middle of this decade.
What Are the Benefits of Electric Cars?
Aside from lower running costs and the small matter of saving the planet, an electric car provides you with a noiseless, silent drive – almost as silent as an interstellar spaceship making its way through Earth's atmosphere.
Well . . . okay, electric cars aren't that high-tech, but you definitely won't get any of the loud revs and vrooms that come with a typical petrol or diesel vehicle running on an internal combustion engine. By contrast, an electric car is more like a cell phone. The most you'll get is a light hum or the occasional wind and tyre noise. (Then again, some motorists feel that revs and vrooms add to the overall driving experience, and that's perfectly okay too.)
And not only do you not have to spend time faffing about at smelly petrol stations, but because battery technology advancements are constantly increasing the average range of electric vehicles, you'll also be spending less and less time recharging, too.
Just remember though that electric vehicles aren't for everyone, so think about your lifestyle, your needs, your daily commute, and so forth. For example, if you find that you routinely travel longer distances or lack regular access to off-street electric charging, then it might be a good idea hanging on to your petrol or diesel car just a little while longer.
If you're interested in learning more . . .
Top 10 Cheapest Electric Cars
Time to take a look at the best EV cars in terms of price, starting from highest to lowest. There's bound to be one that's going to suit your needs.
- Hyundai Kona Electric
- Honda e
- Peugeot e-208
- MG ZS EV
- Renault Zoe
- MINI Electric Hatch
- Nissan Leaf
- Volkswagen e-Up
- Fiat 500 Electric
- Smart EQ ForTwo
Just don't go expecting any miracles. The cheapest vehicle in any class isn't usually the best-performing of that class; or, in this case, the electric car with the longest range. Nor are the most affordable electric cars necessarily the ones that represents the best value for money. Instead, what you're getting is a good wholesale bargain, particularly if you're at the entry-level stage and are perhaps on the lookout for your first electric vehicle.
Note that, where applicable, all cash prices below are inclusive of the government's Plug-in Car Grant.
10. Hyundai Kona Electric
- Cash Price: from approx. £28,000.00 (for the SE Connect trim)
- PCP Cost: £7000 Deposit, £320 pm, £23,200 Total + Balloon Payment
- Lease Cost: £0 Deposit, £372 pm, £17,800 Total
Range: up to 278 miles
Looks-wise, this family car electric SUV might not compare to the MG ZS EV, but it does have the edge when it comes to the interior and overall driving experience. Like all new Hyundai vehicles, it comes with a solid five-year warranty, reflecting the brand's confidence in the quality of their product.
The Kona Electric in its largest battery size boasts an impressive range of 278 miles from a single charge, safely removing any range anxiety you might have. But even the entry-level model performs quite well, delivering a reasonable 180 miles and coming with the same practical equipment.
9. Honda e
- Cash Price: from approx. £28,215.00
- PCP Cost: £6995 Deposit, £366 pm, £24500 Total + Balloon Payment
- Lease Cost: £0 Deposit, £534 pm, £25,600 Total
Range: up to 137 miles
Released in 2020, the Honda e is a fine addition to the cheap electric car market. Its small body and nimble handling makes it perfect for scooting around town, with retro exterior styling that's reminiscent of the 1970s or 80s. It's certainly cute and distinctive and, like the Fiat 500 Electric which we'll soon get to, you could easily imagine the Honda e coming to life in a video game or movie featuring talking cars.
Of course, it's not all about the looks, as the Honda e's interior is kitted out with some of the latest tech, including a dashboard that's full of digital screens. Just don't expect to be making regular long-haul motorway journeys with the vehicle's unimpressive 137-mile range.
8. Peugeot e-208
- Cash Price: from approx. £28,695.00
- PCP Cost: £7000 Deposit, £305 pm, £21,600 Total + Balloon Payment
- Lease Cost: £0 Deposit, £402 pm, £19,300 Total
Range: up to 217 miles
You could just plump for an ordinary petrol or diesel Peugeot 208 hatchback, but where would the planet-saving fun be in that?
This electric version looks just as good, with an exterior that's unmistakably smart and modern. That's matched by an almost equally good-looking interior space, which is slightly more luxurious compared to that of other electric cars. However, if rear seat space is important to you, then you might want to look elsewhere.
The Peugeot e-208's 217-mile range is definitely in the top end of things, and it comes with a fast 100kWh charging capability as standard. If you like the look of it, then you might also want to check out the very similar Vauxhall Corsa-e.
7. MG ZS EV
- Cash Price: from approx. £27,000
- PCP Cost: £7000 Deposit, £262 pm, £19,600 Total + Balloon Payment
- Lease Cost: £0 Deposit, £320 pm, £15,500 Total
Range: up to 273 miles
Although not the cheapest on this list by any stretch of the imagination, the MG ZS EV could well represent the best value for money when it comes to what you're getting, as it offers a modern design, new tech and a long list of nifty features. You'll also be treated to an impressive 470 litres of luggage space – far more than what you'd get with its Hyundai Kona Electric rival, which only offers 332 litres. MG even gives you a very generous seven-year warranty, so you can be sure the product quality is high.
6. Renault Zoe
- Cash Price: from approx. £28,995
- PCP Cost: £7000 Deposit, £263 pm, £19,600 Total + Balloon Payment
- Lease Cost: £0 Deposit, £366 pm, £17,500 Total
Range: up to 238 miles
Arriving fairly early on the modern electric car scene in 2013, the Renault Zoe small car has seen regular updates since then, meaning it now goes up to a very respectable 238 miles on a single charge. Being one of the world's smaller electric vehicles, the Renault Zoe does come up a little short when it comes to interior space, but there is some nice tech inside. The main issue is the incessant wind and tyre noise at high speed which doesn't make it a great motorway car, and only the higher trim models get the handy safety features.
You get a choice of two motors: the R110 and R135. The more powerful of the two does go slightly quicker, but not by sacrificing battery range. It also comes with CCS rapid charging.
5. MINI Electric Hatch
- Cash Price: from approx. £29,500
- PCP Cost: £7000 Deposit, £350 pm, £23,800 Total + Balloon Payment
- Lease Cost: £0 Deposit, £390 pm, £18,720 Total
Range: up to 145 miles
What more can you say about a MINI . . . they're fun, smart-looking and famed for their easy go-kart-like handling. The biggest difference with this electric model lies behind the steering wheel: whereas most petrol and diesel MINIs feature physical instrument dials, the MINI Electric gets a 5.5" digital screen instead. Meanwhile, the ability to charge to 80% in just 36 minutes makes it easily accessible for anyone in a hurry.
However, it's worth noting that the MINI Electric does suffer from spacing issues in the back seats, not to mention a small boot (211 litres), and is outmatched by rivals like the Renault Zoe and the Peugeot e-208 when it comes to range for long distance driving.
4. Nissan Leaf
- Cash Price: from approx. £26,995
- PCP Cost: £7000 Deposit, £223 pm, £17,700 Total + Balloon Payment
- Lease Cost: £0 Deposit, £305 pm, £14,640 Total
Range: up to 150 miles (239 on the Leaf e+)
Released in 2011, the Nissan Leaf helped kickstart the mass production of electric cars, with more than 500,000 now having been built. It's a good general all-rounder with space for all the family, not excelling at any one thing in particular, though the dated infotainment system isn't quite up to scratch and some of the trim can feel a bit cheap at times.
There's two models for you to choose from: the standard Leaf and the Leaf+. The latter packs in a larger 62kWh battery, giving the vehicle added range of up to 239 miles, which is definitely worth it if you find yourself regularly driving longer distances.
3. Volkswagen e-Up
- Cash Price: from approx. £26,995
- PCP Cost: £7000 Deposit, £223 pm, £17,700 Total + Balloon Payment
- Lease Cost: £0 Deposit, £307 pm, £14,700 Total
Range: up to 160 miles
The only way is up with Volkswagen's ultimate city car in electric form. The Volkswagen e-Up has been around for quite a while now (since 2012), and yet it still doesn't feel quite past its best, being the perfect introduction to electric driving for those looking for something more subtle and low-key.
As per the usual for a city car, the e-Up handles well and offers a sublime experience in tight urban areas. The vehicle comes with five doors and a surprisingly large boot space that totals out at 250 litres. Also, the batteries are stored under the seats to save on interior space.
2. Fiat 500 Electric
- Cash Price: from approx. £26,995
- PCP Cost: £7000 Deposit, £267 pm, £17,700 Total + Balloon Payment
- Lease Cost: £0 Deposit, £267 pm, £12,800 Total
Range: up to 199 miles (with 42kWh battery)
A third generation model, the Fiat 500 Electric is cute and filled with personality, looking every bit like it could come to life in a video game or movie with talking cars. Still one of the smallest cars on Britain's roads, it's also one of the easiest to park because of that.
The Fiat 500 Electric can be fast-charged to 80% full battery power in just 30 minutes if you're using a fast-charging public station with the bundled mode 3 cable. The base model Fiat 500 Electric has a much shorter range at just 115 miles, but it's still ideal for short journey city driving.
1. Smart EQ fortwo
- Cash Price: from approx. £20,500
- PCP Cost: £7000 Deposit, £187 pm, £15,900 Total + Balloon Payment
- Lease Cost: £0 Deposit, £289 pm, £13,800 Total
Range: up to 83 miles
We've saved the cheapest electric car for last, with the Smart EQ ForTwo coming in at around the £20,000 mark and topping the range for being the cheapest electric car in 2022. The Mercedes-Benz offshoot EQ has forever been churning out vehicles affordable vehicles with tiny carbon footprints, and this one more than continues the tradition. Its minuscule dimensions means it can slot into just about any parking space, and like many other small cars, it still has enough bite to pack a punch on the performance side of things.
But all good things come at a cost, don't they? As affordable as the Smart EQ ForTwo is, the 83-mile maximum range isn't going to get you anywhere far without having to recharge, meaning it's a car that's best reserved for city driving. And as the name would suggest, the EQ ForTwo has two seats, something which the related Smart EQ ForFour model remedies by adding in two more.
Leasing With LeaseLoco
With the increasing move towards battery-powered cars and electric vehicles brought about by the UK Government's drive for an electric vehicle revolution, more choices in the electric car market are rapidly becoming available. There's a wide range of different battery capacities and sizes, price points and models now there for you to choose from.
Whether you're looking for an SUV, a sports car, or something else entirely, we have a number of deals available to suit your needs.
On that note, here are the top three lease deals that we have on offer on the electric car market right now, as per our Loco Score:
Or for our full range, feel free to search through the entire list of electric car lease deals on our site.
Are Electric Cars Cheaper to Insure?
They sure are. That's because, unlike with a petrol or diesel equivalent, their large battery is expensive to replace if the car gets damaged.
Which Electric Car is Most Popular?
Which Affordable Electric Car has the Longest Range?
Out of the cheap electric cars we've listed above, the Hyundai Kona Electric.
But the honour for the longest all-time electric car range is held by the Lucid Air Dream Edition R, maxing out at a whopping 520 miles.