Best electric hatchbacks for 2023

“Modern electric hatchbacks are far more practical, powerful and engaging to drive than ever before…”

For years we’ve adored hatchbacks here in the UK, with cars like the Ford Fiesta, MINI, Vauxhall Corsa and Volkswagen Golf consistently topping the best-selling car charts. In this blog, we’ll outline some of the best electric hatchbacks you could get your hands on in 2023.

Hatchback EVs have come a long way

A blue Mitsubishi I-MiEV parked in the countryside

Even just ten years ago, electric cars weren’t particularly practical or attractive. Despite acceptable performance around town, take them anywhere near a faster road and they’d soon fall short of their petrol or diesel equivalents – how times have changed.

Take the 2010 Mitsubishi I-MiEV, for example. Twins with the Peugeot iON and Citroën C-Zero, it boasted just 66hp and a range of 93 miles. Auto Express claimed they only achieved 60 miles with theirs, and that was when it was brand new. 12 years later and small EVs will easily do triple those figures without breaking a sweat and, possibly more importantly, will maintain well over 70%+ of that range in many years (and hundreds of thousands of miles) to come.

Modern electric hatchbacks are far more practical, powerful and engaging to drive than ever before; it’s a testament to how much time and effort manufacturers have put in to making their zero emission vehicles truly useable. Crucially, going electric is no longer tainted by a load of shortcomings – they’re a genuinely viable alternative to their ICE rivals.

Before, if you wanted to make the switch to electric, you’d be left with little choice, leaving you with a car that may not be practical for your everyday needs. Nowadays, things are very different, with electric cars available in nearly every segment of car – one of the most popular being hatchbacks.

Here’s a few you should look for in 2023, all with their pros and cons…

Electric hatchbacks to look for in 2023

1. MG4 EV

Range

Real world range

185-225 miles

Range

Price

£25,995 – £31,495

Range

10-80% charge

34 minutes

The MG4 came around in late 2022 and has finally shown the world that electric cars can be all things to all people – inexpensive, great to drive and with an excellent, perfectly useable real-world range. It’s engaging behind the wheel, while remaining comfortable in nearly any situation.

The infotainment system can take some getting used to, the rear visibility isn’t the best and it’s a touch noisier on the motorway than some rivals (with some road and wind noise) but, for the money, MG have made one the best all-round electric hatchbacks the world has ever seen.

2. Renault Megane E-Tech

Range

Real world range

205 miles

Range

Price

£36,995 – £40,995

Range

10-80% charge

28 minutes

Renault have been at the forefront of electric cars in the UK and Europe for quite some time now, so everyone had very high hopes for the Megane E-Tech. They didn’t disappoint. It’s a smooth, quick and comfortable electric hatchback with a fantastic infotainment system and really good quality interior.

Letting it down is slightly poorer than average visibility around town (thanks to large door pillars), and it’s not as fun on twistier roads as some other EVs. But those aside, if you’re looking for a fantastic family all-rounder with great range, the Megane E-Tech should be high on your list.

3. GWM ORA Funky Cat

Range

Real world range

170 miles

Range

Price

£31,995 (first edition)

Range

10-80% charge

47 minutes

“Funky Cat” sounds like a mad pop band from the 80s, right? ORA are new to Britain, with the Funky Cat their first offering over here (they’ve been around in China for a while; GWM, or Great Wall Motors, are huge over there). Don’t let the odd name mislead you though, this is a capable, comfortable all-rounder with plenty of standard equipment and lots of interior space. 

It’s not as fun to drive as its rivals, nor have a size competitive boot or be as quiet at speed. However, there’s no getting around the styling, which is half MINI half VW Beetle in our eyes. One of those Marmite situations… we love it. Don’t be quick to judge, it’s a good hatchback.

4. Smart #1

Range

Real world range

215 miles

Range

Price

£35,000 (circa)

Range

10-80% charge

28 minutes

Smart cars are a bit of a cult favourite over here – people who own them swear by them, but it can take others a lot of convincing to take them seriously. Smart are rebranding and the #1 (said ‘hashtag-one’) is their latest hatchback. It’s got a huge amount of kit as standard (at launch), is impressive enough to drive and has unique interior and exterior styling.

That said, it’s not all ‘smart’. Some of the switchgear inside is a bit fiddly, with you relying on a few touch sensitive buttons that aren’t ideal when on the move, and the boot is quite small for a car of this size. Some motoring journalists have said the one pedal driving can be a bit jerky at times, too. Overall though, it looks and feels great. If you want to stand out a touch, this could be the electric hatchback for you.

5. FIAT 500e

Range

Real world range

145 miles

Range

Price

£24,435 – £33,645

Range

10-80% charge

25 minutes

A firm favourite of elmo’s since it appeared in 2021, the FIAT 500e is a fantastic electric hatchback for the city, that’s surprisingly capable whatever you throw at it. It’s small, stylish and great fun to drive with an excellent one pedal driving experience. The infotainment system is quick, intuitive and easy to use too – this is a little car with a lot going for it.

Yes, it’s expensive for its size and rear space is limited… but you wouldn’t get one of these to carry adults in the back regularly anyway, and you can get the 500e on an all-inclusive elmo subscription to keep costs down. FIAT really brought their a-game with this car, and we love it.

6. Peugeot e-208

Range

Real world range

175-200 miles

Range

Price

£31,345 – £34,895

Range

10-80% charge

26 minutes

Peugeot has regularly been top-of-the-class in the hatchback segment for a while, and the e-208 is no exception. Despite being around for a little while now, it’s still an excellent small car with Peugeot upgrading the battery pack for 2023. It’s got a far more luxurious interior over others in this class, is faster and more responsive than its ICE siblings and charges really quickly too.

The infotainment system can be a bit fiddly at times (especially when on the move), rear space is tight for its size and it’s a touch choppier at slow speeds than other small EVs. But it’s a great small car with lots of big car features. Too small for you? Don’t worry, Peugeot are releasing the e-308 next year as well.

7. Vauxhall Corsa-e

Range

Real world range

175 miles

Range

Price

£31,000 – £33,735

Range

10-80% charge

26 minutes

Based on the same underpinnings as the e-208 above, the Vauxhall Corsa-e is a great small car that’s better equipped in lower trims than some of its’ rivals, and has an easy to understand and use infotainment system and interior. Like the Peugeot, it’s also the pick of the Corsa bunch over its petrol and diesel sisters too, with the upcoming Astra-e set to do the same.

That simple interior does mean it’s a case of ‘function over style’ – it’s not the most interesting to look at, nor the most fun to drive. Rear space is also slightly cramped too. But, on the whole, if you’re new to EVs or want something that will do the job of ferrying yourself and a couple others from A to B in peace and quiet, you could go far worse than a Corsa-e.

8. Renault ZOE

Range

Real world range

190 miles

Range

Price

£29,995 – £31,995

Range

10-80% charge

56 minutes

If out and out range and maximum efficiency is all you’re after from your small electric hatchback, look no further. The Renault ZOE has been with us for a long time, but it’s been extensively updated since the early years of its existence. Fantastic range, a class leading clever infotainment system and excellent visibility mean the ZOE is an electric car you’d sorely miss if it were ever taken away.

Some of the interior trim isn’t as plush as other cars in this class, it’s not as fast to charge and isn’t as capable at higher speeds than rivals. But you’ll be hard pushed to find a small electric car this capable for the money; it’s a great hatchback.

9. Volkswagen ID.3

Range

Real world range

215 miles

Range

Price

£36,195+

Range

10-80% charge

31 minutes

Volkswagen did well with their e-Up! small electric city car, but that’s no longer for sale. Thankfully, the larger ID.3 is a great electric car for growing families. It’s got copious amounts of room in the front and back for passengers, with great range and fast charging, making longer journeys with a boot full no problem. 

There are a few downsides though; the touch sensitive buttons for the air-conditioning can get frustrating on the move and, despite the higher price, it does still feel a little cheap in places. That said, it’s a very competent car that drives good, is well-built and comfortable at all speeds.

10. CUPRA Born

Range

Real world range

170-280 miles

Range

Price

£36,475 – £43,735

Range

10-80% charge

33 minutes

Want to go a bit further and a bit faster? Check out the CUPRA Born. It shares a lot of components with the ID.3 inside, outside and underneath, but looks a whole lot meaner. There are a few different battery options and motors to choose from – in its most powerful form, it’s a fast car. 

Like the ID.3 though, it suffers from those slightly irritating touch sensitive buttons and a slow infotainment system… but you buy a car to drive, right? This is an EV hatchback for those that love driving.

11. Nissan Leaf

Range

Real world range

145-210 miles

Range

Price

£28,995 – £36,445

Range

10-80% charge

59 minutes

It’s been around for a little while now! But the Nissan Leaf is still worthy of this list. It’s got lots of clever safety kit (including a new ProPilot semi-autonomous driving package for 2023), plenty of range on the higher-powered models, a comfortable ride and good visibility and space. It goes to show how excellent this second-generation car was when it first hit our roads in 2017.

In some places it is starting to show its age though – it’s slower to charge than most rivals and isn’t as engaging to drive as other aforementioned electric hatchbacks. But, if you can charge at home, the Nissan Leaf would make a great family companion.

12. MINI Electric

Range

Real world range

110 miles

Range

Price

£29,000 – £34,500

Range

10-80% charge

29 minutes

Cue clichés about go-karts. The MINI Electric is one of the best driving small electric hatchbacks on the market, even in 2023. It’s great fun to drive, has a high quality well-appointed interior and (even if it’s not your thing) there’s no denying the MINIs looks have taken the world by storm. They’ve sold millions of them, and the Electric is worthy of taking MINI into the future.

Let’s be honest though, for a hatchback, it’s not very practical. The boot is small, the rear seats aren’t great either and the sportier suspension means it’s a touch bumpy at slow speeds. Range? Let’s not talk about it… the MINI makes up for all this though with spades of character.

13. Honda e

Range

Real world range

105 miles

Range

Price

£36,920 – £38,120

Range

10-80% charge

39 minutes

Honda have been playing with electric motors since the inception of its Insight Hybrid back in the late 90s. That car was acclaimed for its quirkiness, as is the Honda e. It’s got heaps of awesome interior features, with a huge set of screens spanning the width of the car that you can plug games consoles into. It’s seriously cute, too.

But, like the MINI, this car is a lot of style without some of the substance. It’s very expensive for such a small car, has a teeny boot and has a far less than ideal range. That said, it’s one of those cars that’ll put a smile on your face – if you’re after a fun little commuter or city car, you’d love owning one of these.

Which is your favourite?

The best electric hatchbacks you could be driving in the UK, in 2023. Those are our picks! But what’s yours?

Want to try an electric hatchback, or other electric car? Get an elmo subscription – with either our elmoFlex and elmoSave options, and a wide range of electric cars to choose from, there’s something to suit everyone.

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