- Volkswagen ID.3
- Peugeot e-208
- Fiat 500
- Vauxhall Corsa Electric
- Mini Electric
- BMW i3
- Mercedes EQA
- Audi Q4 e-tron
- Smart EQ ForTwo
- Honda e
Electric vehicles (EVs) are becoming more and more popular – and they’re especially sought-after in towns and cities. In fact, research by the consumer association Which? found that in 2021, almost half of urban drivers were interested in switching to an electric car, compared to a third of rural buyers.
So, if you’re thinking about buying an electric car for your commute, shopping trips and other journeys around town, you’ll want to know what’s out there. To help speed up your search, we’ve compiled a list of the best electric cars for city driving.
Why are EVs so good for urban driving?
There are several reasons that EVs are especially well suited to driving in town. These include:
- Reduced air pollution: Air pollution from vehicle emissions is a major cause of health problems in towns and cities. Since EVs don’t have an exhaust pipe, you can help reduce air pollution (do note that EVs kick up dust from the road, which still contributes to air pollution – but much less than other kinds of car).
- Better charging infrastructure: Although the UK’s EV charging network is constantly growing, it is the most advanced in our towns and cities. You’ll never be far from a charging point in most urban areas.
- Range is less of an issue: Most urban drivers cover much shorter distances than rural or suburban drivers. Although EV range is constantly improving, urban drivers have less reason to worry about this compared to people who live in the countryside.
- Quieter Driving: The best electric city cars are also much quieter than petrol or diesel cars – helping tackle the problem of noise pollution.
- Avoid congestion taxes: Many cities across the UK have introduced low emission or ‘clean air’ zones, which come with charges for people who drive polluting vehicles. EV drivers can avoid these fees.
- Suited to urban driving style: Driving in towns and cities involves lots of stopping, starting and crawling. Since EVs can instantly accelerate without you having to manually shift gears, driving them in cities is often much smoother (and less tiring) compared to petrol or diesel cars.
What makes an EV the best electric car for city driving?
Most EVs are great for driving around town. All the same, the best electric city cars in 2023 have some of the following features:
- Compact: Urban drivers need to be able to park and turn in tight spaces so smaller EVs are great city cars.
- Speedy: EVs can quickly accelerate, ideal for when you’re stuck in traffic or in a rush.
- Tech: Features such as parking assist and sensors around the car are really helpful when driving in town to avoid bumps and scrapes.
- Easy to drive: The best electric city cars should handle well, with light-touch steering and great control.
- Comfort: Urban driving might see you waiting in jams, at lights and in slow-moving queues. The best electric cars for city driving should offer a comfortable cocoon where you have all your creature comforts at hand.