Smooth, strong acceleration at town speeds, with zero emissions and minimal running costs beyond the monthly leasing fee.
Maximum range is fewer than 100 miles and public charging points are few and far between. However, the biggest problem is the high cost.
On the road
What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is
The car is powered by a 47-kilowatt (64bhp) electric motor fed by a 16 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack. There's 140lb ft of torque from standstill, so it accelerates strongly and smoothly up to typical urban speeds and can embarrass many a small petrol or diesel car. The lack of a gearbox makes it a doddle to drive, too.
Ride & Handling
The car is quite tall, but the batteries and motor are housed beneath the floor to keep the centre of gravity low. As a result, the iOn feels stable in the urban conditions it has been designed for, and there’s enough compliance in the suspension to absorb most of the effects of potholes and bumps. However, it doesn’t grip well if you get over-enthusiastic at roundabouts, and when you leave the city behind, the car is all too easily upset by side winds and the wake from HGVs.
One of the delights of electric cars is that they are almost silent when running. In this car, there’s a bit of whirring from the motor, but it’s a mere hum in the background - in town. On faster roads, this turns into an irritating whine, and because the car is so tall it stirs up a fair amount of wind noise at relatively modest speeds.