In an industry that boasts more than 300 new-car models available to the public each year, perhaps nothing has more radically changed the face of automotive than the rapid rise in production and popularity of electric cars. Fueled by both environmental and economic pressures, automakers have overhauled their lineups to include more and more electric vehicles (EVs) with each passing year. To help car shoppers discern the best among all available new EVs, Autotrader, a Cox Automotive company, has named the 10 Best Electric Vehicles for 2022.
“For years, experts predicted the electric car revolution was coming, and now we can firmly declare it has arrived,” said Brian Moody, executive editor for Autotrader. “There are more EV choices than ever before in 2022, with a wide range of prices, styles and capabilities, ensuring there is an EV available to fit into most any lifestyle. As gas prices continue to rise and fluctuate throughout the United States, EVs are likely to become even more appealing to car shoppers as they consider their next new-vehicle purchase.”
Autotrader’s editorial team drove and lived with this year’s electric vehicles, evaluating important factors like the interiors, exteriors, powertrains, ride and handling, comfort, features, and of course, prices. They also carefully considered whether each vehicle served the purpose for which it was built, be it commuting efficiently, keeping a family safe, conveying a sense of prestige, or helping the driver feel like they finally found an EV match for their lifestyle. The editors took each electric vehicle through seemingly mundane but important tasks like parking, lane-changing, backing up, and loading cargo space. They also assessed essentials like acceleration, braking, handling, interior quiet and comfort, as well as materials and build quality.
To create this list, each editor contributed their opinions, expertise and rating of each vehicle on a 5-point scale. To meet final consideration, the 2022 model-year electric vehicles had to receive a minimum 4.0 out of 5.0 points from Autotrader’s editors. For the first time, only pure EVs were allowed on the list (no hybrids, plug-in hybrids or hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles). In addition, each of the electric cars, SUVs and trucks had to be available for delivery to the public within six months of the list being published. Below are Autotrader’s 10 Best Electric Vehicles for 2022, listed alphabetically by brand:
Autotrader’s 10 Best Electric Vehicles for 2022
2022 Chevrolet Bolt/Bolt EUV
The Bolt recently received a makeover and a slightly larger EUV (electric utility vehicle) sibling. Its new exterior and interior designs improved on the outgoing model’s minor shortcomings, and the improved battery capacity and motor make the 2022 Bolt even more capable.
2022 Ford Mustang Mach-E
Despite taking on the iconic name of one of the original pony cars, this fast and furious electric SUV has an appeal all its own. The Mustang Mach-E has a great interior, fun exterior, and shoppers don’t necessarily need to spend up to the GT version to have a good time.
2022 GMC Hummer EV Pickup
GM’s first all-electric pickup truck revives the Hummer nameplate, this time as a sub-brand of GMC. In stark contrast to the original gas-guzzling behemoth Hummer, this new EV pickup is a monstrously capable, fast, quiet, electron-powered beauty.
2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5
Hyundai continues to refine its Ioniq concept, and the 2022 Ioniq 5 is the best version yet. It’s thoroughly futuristic yet also has a fun, retro vibe. The Ioniq 5’s driving experience, especially the progressive regenerative braking, is sophisticated and seamless.
2022 Kia EV6
Beyond pure function, Kia pushed the design boundaries with the new EV6, ensuring this new generation of transportation boasts a new look all its own. The EV6’s sleek design is a bold look for Kia, especially compared to past vehicles from the brand.
2022 Mercedes-EQ EQS
While Mercedes-Benz has been incorporating electric power into its lineup for several years now with EQ Boost, the 2022 Mercedes-EQ EQS is the brand’s first electric vehicle. This true luxury EV should leave Tesla’s Elon Musk quaking in his fancy hipster shoes, and its interior is S-Class-level excellent.
2022 Rivian R1T
Rivian is an enticing new startup EV manufacturer, and the R1T electric pickup truck is the first consumer vehicle from the brand. The impressive, full-size EV brims with technological innovations and delightful details, including a big front trunk (frunk) and a bonus rear trunk.
2022 Tesla Model 3
Possibly the most successful and unconventional automaker in the world right now, Tesla continues to crank out variants on its EV theme. While still focusing on luxury and advanced technology, the Model 3 is the most affordable electric car in the company’s lineup and still offers outstanding range, performance, and available driver assistance features.
2022 Volkswagen ID.4
The ID.4 impresses with its smooth integration of function with form, retaining its essential “VW-ness” even without an internal combustion engine. Much like an Apple device on wheels, the interior is modern and functional, while the exterior is attractive without being flashy. Like other Volkswagens, the ID.4 also is fun to drive.
2022 Volvo C40 Recharge
Volvo’s commitment to electrification has expanded beyond the SUV range to its first all-electric compact car, the C40 Recharge. Since Volvo rebooted itself in the last decade, it retained its core identity as a safety leader and elevated its interiors into the luxury category. The C40 delivers a stylish, comfortable, capable EV with a distinctly Swedish flavor.
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