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Are you ready to electrify your life without breaking the bank? Electric vehicles (EVs) grow their market share annually and will eventually take over gas-powered cars. For now, there are fewer EVs than their internal combustion (IC) engine counterparts, making them more expensive. However, there are still some affordable options for the average consumer wanting to be environmentally conscious. Here’s a guide for the cheapest EVs in 2023.
What Are the Cheapest EVs on the Market?
Gone are the days when you could pay between $15k and $20k for a brand-new car. Kelley Blue Book says the average new car price is $48,334, putting a deep hole in many wallets. However, these five cheapest EVs alleviate the pain.
5. 2023 Hyundai Kona Electric SE
Let’s start with the Hyundai Kona Electric SE. Crossovers and full-sized SUVs typically make the price go higher. Still, the South Korean automaker makes EVs more affordable with a $33,550 manufacturer’s suggested retail price (MSRP).
The Kona Electric SE has an EPA-estimated 258-mile range and 201 horsepower under the hood. These numbers won’t blow you away, but this SUV is a terrific option for families. Taking cross-country road trips is easier and more environmentally friendly when you’re behind the wheel of an electric SUV.
4. 2024 Mini Cooper SE Electric Hardtop
Mini has been a staple of the automotive world since the 1960s. In fact, industry experts said the Mini was the second-most influential vehicle of the 20th century. Now, the iconic car is going electric.
The electric Mini Cooper has a 114-mile range and a sporty 181 horsepower. Owners can take advantage of short charging times, requiring only 36 minutes to charge to 80% with a 50kW cable. You’ll be glad to know consumers are pretty happy with their Mini Cooper SE Electric Hardtop, showing the highest satisfaction rate among the mass-market brands.
3. 2024 Nissan Leaf
Sometimes, you can’t outdo the classics. The Nissan Leaf is one of the original EVs in the automotive industry, debuting in 2009. In fact, it was the first mass-market EV at the time and is still going strong today.
The 2024 Nissan Leaf will start at just $28,140, making it one of the cheapest EVs on the market. Are you a high schooler, or is one of your kids wanting their first car? The Leaf is an excellent vehicle to get them started on an environmentally conscious path. This car boasts a 212-mile range, letting you drive all over town without worries of a dead battery.
2. 2023 Chevy Bolt EUV $27,800
Chevrolet occupies the top two spots on the list with variations on the same vehicle. The first option is the Chevy Bolt EUV, the automaker’s take on an electric SUV. The Bolt EUV has 200 horsepower under the hood and a whopping 247-mile range.
The Bolt EUV is the first American car to appear on the list, making it eligible for the Clean Vehicle Federal Tax Credit. The federal government offers a rebate of up to $7,500 if you buy a qualifying vehicle. Production must finish assembly in the United States, making the Bolt EUV eligible.
1. 2023 Chevy Bolt EV
Your top option on the list of cheapest EVs is the 2023 Chevy Bolt EV. The Bolt EV is similar to the EUV, except it’s a hatchback instead of a crossover SUV. If you want a smaller car, the Bolt EV is for you.
The starting price of $26,500 is a draw for many consumers, considering most EVs easily eclipse $35k or $40k. With the Bolt EV, you get a 259-mile range and 200 horsepower. Plus, you can use direct-current (DC) charging to add 100 miles to your motor in a half-hour.
What to Inspect in the Cheapest EVs
Researching the auto market is essential before heading to the dealership. Check out every detail of the vehicles you’re considering before purchasing. Here are three things to consider when looking at the cheapest EVs.
The first thing you need to do is look at the EV range. Your EV should be able to take you where you need to go and fit your needs. If you mainly stay in your city, you can compromise some on the range. Still, you should look for the highest capacity possible. For example, the Bolt’s 250-mile range makes it a popular choice for consumers.
EV ranges aren’t as good as gas-powered cars right now, but the numbers are improving. The International Energy Agency (IEA) says the average EV in 2021 had a 349km range (216 miles) compared to a 127km range (78 miles) in 2010.
Local Charging Infrastructure
Your range will be even more critical when considering your local charging infrastructure. How many chargers are in your area? Check out online maps like Plugshare to see how many public stations are available. If stations are plentiful, you can be more flexible with your range. However, fewer stations may make it harder on your weekly commute. Plus, you can’t forget about road trips.
Take advantage of automaker deals, even when shopping for the cheapest EVs. Some auto manufacturers, such as Chevrolet or Hyundai, will install a level 2 charger in your home if you purchase a qualifying EV.
When you buy a car, you expect it to last a long time. Reliability is a top priority for consumers, and you should consider it in your vehicle. One way to gauge reliability is to check expert rankings. For example, Consumer Reports unveils an annual list of the most reliable automakers.
Use the 2022 rankings as a guide for your next EV. For example, Toyota, Lexus and BMW constitute the top three. However, the bottom three see Volkswagen, Jeep and Mercedes-Benz bring up the rear.
Finding the Cheapest EVs
The car market does no favors for buyers nowadays. However, there is light at the end of the tunnel if you want an EV. Check out these five vehicles if you’re ready to jump ship and drive a battery-electric car. Finding a vehicle under $35,000 or $30,000 is difficult, but these cars do the job.