In France, two electric cars have stood out from the rest of the pack since the beginning of 2022. In this case two models that are opposed by everything, from the Tesla Model 3 and the Dacia Spring, both exceed 6,000 copies sold between January and April. , are antagonistic in every way. In the performance / technology package of the American, the Romanian responds with a minimum price and a pragmatism to the limit of what is acceptable. However, the electric landscape is already rich enough not to have to hesitate between these two paradoxes and for everyone to find what they are looking for.. For this summer of 2022, AM points the finger at 6 less prominent models because they are older or less known and you can count on. Please note that all advertised autonomy has been verified under protocol.
1. The electric Fiat 500: the sexiest
For its 500 electrics, Fiat has managed to maintain the clear line that made the Italian’s success. But this version has nothing to do with its thermal sister. New platform, dimensions up to a few centimeters in all dimensions – also with the aim of housing the large battery of 42 kWh (37.3 kWh useful) -, a much more modern interior and better quality, as well as improved comfort make it a great city car. Its 118 hp gives it a good dynamism, but it is still designed for urban and peri-urban use because its range does not exceed 150 km on the motorway. A 95 hp variant with a small 23.8 kWh battery is also available from € 25,400.
The ranges of the Fiat 500 electric
- City autonomy: 240 km
- Autonomy road: 178 km
- Highway: 150 km
2. The BMW i4 eDrive 40: the Tesla Model 3 eater
The BMW i4 is the 100% electric variant of the 4 Series Grand Coupé, to which BMW has just added a tighter grille and touches of blue. On board, the habitability remains the same but the German receives two large screens. With a single electric motor that develops 340 hp and 430 Nm, located on the rear axle, this BMW i4 is already accelerating strongly and shows great acceleration: only 3.1 s to go from 80 to 120 km / h. despite a very high mass of 2,155 kg verified! An overweight that is due in part to its good manufacturing quality, rich equipment but also and above all its very large battery of 80.7 kWh useful that offers a comfortable range (350 km on the highway and 460 km in the city). Despite all his pounds, this BMW i4 benefits from a really efficient front axle on dry roads and well-controlled traction. Not to mention braking is generally easy to dose, something rare in electric cars. Beware, however, of rainy weather or slippery roads.
The autonomy of the BMW i4
- City autonomy: 460 km
- Autonomy road: 463 km
- Motorway: 350 km
Compare the actual range of the best electric cars according to our standardized measurement cycle. Battery capacity, consumption, autonomy, we tell you everything!
3. The Hyundai Kona Electric: the safe bet
If it’s not very young since it was born in 2017, the Hyundai Kona is still a great choice. Thanks to its usable 64 kWh battery and controlled consumption, it travels up to 480 km in the city and 380 km by road (265 km on the highway). In addition to good range, this Hyundai Kona accelerates well: only 4.5 s to go from 80 to 120 km / h, to the point that the front axle can have trouble digesting this passion. In the city, this Hyundai proves to be a pleasure of vivacity, without the slightest jolt, in a good silence and with comfortable suspensions. We only regret that the brake pedal, a bit fluffy and suffering a reaction time, is not easy to dose in case of a surprise intervention. Fortunately, it is possible to adjust the intensity of the engine brake, which allows, at the highest level, to mitigate this problem.
Autonomy of the Hyundai Kona Electric
- City autonomy: 480 km
- Autonomy road: 380 km
- Motorway: 265 km
4. The electric Peugeot e-208: the French look
Designed to be thermal, the Peugeot 208 was not easy to electrify. Scattered in various elements under the rear seats and the center console, the useful 46 kWh battery also required the use of a simplified and less bulky rear axle. Despite this correct capacity, the range of the Peugeot e-208 is still a bit disappointing, with 252 km in the city, no doubt, but no more than 211 km on the road and only 160 km on the highway., which really limits its versatility. However, its road qualities and comfort are undeniable and its performance is satisfactory: 6.1 s to go from 80 to 120 km / h. Low hopes: Some changes in battery management should come soon, as well as a new, more efficient engine to improve battery life.
Autonomy of the Peugeot e-208
- City autonomy: 252 km
- Autonomy road: 211 km
- Highway: 160 km
5. The Renault Zoe: The French car is still up to standard
Born in 2013, the electric Renault Zoe received a major restyling and a 52 kWh battery at the end of 2019. With its efficient coiled rotor motor, it benefits from a very interesting autonomy outside the motorway, especially in the its 108 hp variant, more sober than the 135 hp. With 395 km in the city and 280 km on the road, this Renault Zoe R110 turns out to be an excellent second car, as long as it avoids sections at 130 km / h, where it will stop after 220 km … Integrated, the Zoe enchants the city with its silence and its express fire start, all reinforced by an efficient chassis and more conciliatory suspensions. Oddly enough, braking is pretty easy to dose. The only downside is that the driving position is a bit too vertical and the performance of the on-board charger is poor, which increases the price of a full tank and prolongs the recharging time.
Autonomy of the Renault Zoe
- City autonomy: 395 km
- Autonomy road: 280 km
- Motorway: 220 km
6. The Volvo XC40 Recharge: the original SUV
Significantly less powerful than the “twin-engine” Volvo XC40 and its 408 hp, the single-engine “traction” Volvo XC40, with its 231 hp, significantly reduces the price of access: € 43,940, compared to the previous € 53,300. At the same time, the battery goes from 78 kWh to 69 kWh. This does not prevent Volvo from announcing, thanks to a lower mass of 165 kg, better autonomy in the WLTP approval cycle. (424 km vs. Twin Recharge 418 km). If you do not have an imperative need for traction on all four wheels (mounting area …), this input level is more than enough (330 Nm of instantaneous torque). While maintaining a fairly efficient chassis with progressive suspensions. All it needs, in addition to the freewheel mode and the slightly hard “pedal” braking, is a normal engine brake.
Posted on 15/05/2022 Updated 15/05/2022 François Lemaur and the editorial staff