Best electric SUVs 2024 – best and worst reviewed and rated

Thanks to big advancements in battery and charging technology, the best electric SUVs are now as usable as they are desirable. Here we count down the top 10 – and reveal the models to avoid...

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by
Darren Moss
Published15 March 2024

Electric cars and SUVs are two types of car that are currently in huge demand, so electric SUVs are perhaps the most desirable models of all right now.

It's about more than just fashion, too – the best of the breed are as practical as they are classy, and as good to drive as they are cheap to run. But which models are we talking about, exactly? Well, our experienced team of road testers rate each new model in up to 18 different areas, and after applying this rigorous testing to every model on sale, have concluded that the Kia EV6 is the best electric SUV you can buy. To find out why, and which version we recommend, you’ll need to keep reading.

Best electric SUVs 2024

Below you'll find our top 10 electric SUVs, and the ones we'd avoid. If anything on the list take your fancy, simply click on the relevant link to find out more or see browse through our electric SUV deals to see how much you could save.


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Our pick: 166kW GT Line 77.4kWh 5dr Auto

0-62mph: 7.3 sec
CO2 emissions: 0g/km
Seats: 5
Boot: 490 litres
Insurance group: 34A
Reliability
Safety
Costs
Quality
Performance

Strengths

  • Long range and fast charging
  • Loads of rear legroom
  • Seven-year Kia warranty

Weaknesses

  • Shallow boot
  • Not exactly cheap
  • Slightly firm ride

It should come as no surprise to see the Kia EV6 topping this class – it is, after all, a former What Car? Car of the Year, and two years since its introduction remains the best choice if you’re looking for an electric family SUV.

Key to its appeal is how easily the EV6 can slot into family life. In the RWD form we recommend, it’s officially capable of travelling up to 328 miles on a full charge – which is more than rivals such as the Volkswagen ID 4 can manage, so family days out shouldn’t include a charging stop. However, if they do, then the EV6’s peak charging rate of 238kW means topping up the battery can be completed in the time it takes to grab lunch.

Then there’s the comfort the EV6 offers, because not only does it look suitably upmarket inside, even beating its Hyundai Ioniq 5 sister car for quality, but there’s enough space for everyone to stretch out. Plus we managed to fit seven carry-on suitcases into the EV6’s boot – enough for the holiday luggage of most families. 

"The EV6's ride is firm, which means you'll feel urban bumps more acutely than you would in the rival Nissan Ariya, but it's also more pleasurable to drive, with tighter body control and more responsive brakes." – Will Nightingale, Reviews Editor

Read our Kia EV6 review

Our pick: 200kW Premium 66kWh 5dr Auto

0-62mph: 6.7 sec
CO2 emissions: 0g/km
Seats: 5
Boot: 313 litres
Insurance group: 32E
Driving
Interior
Practicality
Buying & Owning

Strengths

  • Great to drive
  • Plush, high-quality interior
  • Great safety rating

Weaknesses

  • Small boot
  • Slightly choppy low-speed ride
  • Efficiency could be better

Not so long ago, Smart only made tiny city cars which had poor ranges. Now the brand makes one of the most desirable small electric SUVs, because there's a lot to like about the #1.

For starters, it's fast – in fact, in our tests, the #1 beat its official 0-60mph sprint time, reaching motorway speeds in just 5.8sec. That's faster than the similarly priced BYD Atto 3 can manage, or the pricier Kia Niro EV.

Don't think the #1 is all go and no show, though, because its interior looks and feels premium, and a couple of six-footers won't feel cramped on its rear seats. The boot is on the small side, however – we managed to fit just three carry-on suitcases inside.

"The Smart #1 is a smooth motorway cruiser, with a ride which settles down more at speed than in the rival Jeep Avenger" – Darren Moss, Deputy Digital Editor

Read our Smart #1 review

Our pick: 168kW Premium 77.4kWh 5dr Auto [Comfort]

0-62mph: 7.8 sec
CO2 emissions: 0g/km
Seats: 5
Boot: 432 litres
Insurance group: 41A
Driving
Interior
Practicality
Buying & Owning

Strengths

  • Wonderful interior
  • Extremely quiet on the move
  • Great infotainment system

Weaknesses

  • Boot isn't huge
  • Rear space is average
  • Optional cameras not as good as traditional door mirrors

With the Genesis GV60, upmarket Korean brand Genesis took the underpinnings of the excellent Kia EV6 and added an extra layer of polish to create something truly special. 

The GV60 not only offers a generous range of up to 321 miles and ultra-fast charging (meaning a 10-80% top up could take as little as 20 minutes), but is also extremely refined and has a wonderful interior. 

You’ll pay more for the GV60 than you would for the EV6, but you get lots of goodies for your money; for example, all GV60s come with wireless phone charging, dual-zone climate control and adaptive cruise control.

"The GV60 handles more crisply than you might expect for a heavy electric SUV, and leans less through corners than rivals from Audi and Hyundai." – Steve Huntingford, Editor

Read our Genesis GV60 review

Driving
Interior
Practicality
Buying & Owning

Strengths

  • Longer range than most direct rivals
  • Great infotainment system
  • Comparatively well priced

Weaknesses

  • Not as fast as rivals
  • Audi E-tron is quieter
  • Tesla Model 3 has a longer range and faster charging

Aside from some styling details and the fact the combustion engine has been replaced with an electric motor, you’d be hard pushed to tell the BMW iX3 apart from its combustion-engined sibling, the BMW X3.

That’s no bad thing, because it means you’re getting a classy and practical SUV with, among other things, a decent boot and one of the best infotainment systems you’ll find in any new car.

Combine those attributes with a comfortable ride, assured handling and a long range of up to 285 miles between charges, and the iX3 is easy to recommend. And despite having a premium badge on its bonnet, you’ll pay less for the iX3 than you would for some rivals – just be aware that some are faster and can charge at faster speeds.

"While it isn't as vast inside as the larger BMW iX, you'll have to be very tall to find yourself struggling for head or leg room inside the iX3" – Lawrence Cheung, New Cars Editor

Read our BMW iX3 review

Reliability
Safety
Costs
Quality
Performance

Strengths

  • Extremely practical
  • 85 version has an impressive range
  • Comfortable and easy to drive

Weaknesses

  • So-so performance from entry-level 60 version
  • You'll want to add options, such as a heat pump
  • Faster charging capability limited to 4x4 Enyaqs

Skoda's first bespoke electric car is practical and good to drive, with a comfortable ride and relaxed handling.

You get a lot of kit for your money, too. Indeed, the cheapest models come with dual-zone climate control, 19in alloy wheels and cruise control. 

These ‘60’ versions are well priced, and you’ll pay less for one of them than you would for smaller alternatives such as the Kia Niro EV. However, it's the '85' version which we recommend for its added performance and extra range – up to 348 miles on a charge.

Don’t think a bargain price means bargain materials inside, though. On the contrary, for the money, the Enyaq’s interior feels very good, and everything feels built to last the rough and tumble of family life.

"Recently refreshed versions of the Skoda Enyaq iV are as roomy as ever inside, but now feature improved infotainment as well." – Neil Winn, Deputy Reviews Editor

Read our Skoda Enyaq iV review

Our pick: 200kW Single Motor Plus 51kWh 5dr Auto

0-62mph: 5.7 sec
CO2 emissions: 0g/km
Seats: 5
Boot: 400 litres
Insurance group: 35E
Driving
Interior
Practicality
Buying & Owning

Strengths

  • Great to drive
  • Smart interior – particularly in Ultra spec
  • Starting price undercuts many rivals

Weaknesses

  • Rear space isn't great
  • Efficiency could be better
  • Fiddly touch-sensitive controls on steering wheel

Volvo's smallest electric SUV counts the Hyundai Kona Electric, Kia Niro EV and Smart #1 among its key rivals, and impresses by bringing comfort and luxury for a relatively modest price.

Indeed, despite under-cutting some of those rivals on price, the EX30 feels properly upmarket inside, with materials which feel classy to touch, and impressive to look at. Standard kit is plentiful, too, including adaptive cruise control, a powered tailgate, heated front seats and dual-zone climate control.

We'd stick with cheaper Single Motor Extended Range versions of the EX30, which should provide enough performance for most families, yet will also quell your range anxiety. Indeed, with an official range of up to 295 miles from its 64kWh battery, it'll get you further between charges than the #1 or Jeep Avenger. And when it does come to charging up, a 10-80% top-up can take as little as 26 minutes if you use the fastest chargers.

"Usefully for a family SUV, the EX30's rear seats lie flush with the boot floor when you fold them down, allowing you to turn the car into a van at a moment's notice." – Darren Moss, Deputy Digital Editor

Read our Volvo EX30 review

Driving
Interior
Practicality
Buying & Owning

Strengths

  • One of the quietest cars we’ve ever tested
  • Spacious and luxurious interior
  • Great infotainment system

Weaknesses

  • Air suspension and rear-wheel steering available only on pricier xDrive50
  • xDrive40 has a disappointing real-world range
  • Teslas have a better charging infrastructure

The BMW iX is beautifully appointed inside, mixing the visual appeal of the rival Mercedes EQC with the build quality of the Audi Q8 e-tron. The result is an interior which you won’t mind spending lots of time in.

In addition, the iX has more space for your luggage than some other electric SUVs, plus it’s extremely quiet on the move. In our tests, we managed to fit in eight carry-on suitcases – more than enough for your average family holiday.

Go for the xDrive50 version and you’ll have 516bhp to play with, plus an official range of up to 284 miles between charges – more than most rivals can manage. It's also fast, managing the 0-60mph sprint in just 4.4sec. You could spend more on the range-topping M60 version, with its 610bhp, but in real-world conditions it doesn't feel that much faster.

"It's relaxing to drive, but the iX's light steering doesn't inspire a great deal of confidence when you're pressing on, plus there's more body lean than you'd find in the Audi Q8 e-tron." – Stuart Milne, Digital Editor

Read our BMW iX review

Our pick: 210kW 45 82kWh Sport 5dr Auto [Leather]

0-62mph: 6.7 sec
CO2 emissions: 0g/km
Seats: 5
Boot: 520 litres
Insurance group: 36E
Reliability
Safety
Costs
Quality
Performance

Strengths

  • Comfortable ride at all speeds
  • Classy and spacious interior
  • Well priced

Weaknesses

  • So-so performance
  • Visibility could be better
  • Cheapest versions have a short range

The Audi Q4 e-tron is temptingly priced for a premium-badged electric SUV, plus it’s a very comfortable and classy choice. 

Your family will like it, too, because there’s more head and legroom for taller passengers than you’ll find in some rivals, plus the boot is large enough to carry anything they might wish to bring with them. It managed to swallow seven carry-on suitcases in our tests.

However, if you’re not so worried about the emblem on the nose of your car, we’d urge you to look at the Skoda Enyaq iV as well; it’s similar in a lot of respects yet should cost you less to buy – that's one of the reasons it appears above the Q4 e-tron on this list.

"Choosing big wheels can often leave a car with an overly firm ride because they're shod with low-profile tyres. However, the Q4 e-tron is comfortable even on 20in alloys." – Lawrence Cheung, New Cars Editor

Read our Audi Q4 e-tron review

Our pick: 168kW Premium 77 kWh 5dr Auto [Part Leather]

0-62mph: 7.3 sec
CO2 emissions: 0g/km
Seats: 5
Boot: 527 litres
Insurance group: 35E
Reliability
Safety
Costs
Quality
Performance

Strengths

  • Very quiet on the move – as long as you avoid 20in alloys
  • Super-fast charging speeds
  • Enormously spacious interior

Weaknesses

  • Not as quiet as the Genesis GV60 at a cruise
  • Not as sharp to drive as the EV6
  • Interior quality could be better

Even though the Hyundai Ioniq 5 finishes behind its sibling cars from Genesis and Kia here, don’t discount it – it's a cracking electric SUV.

Combining standout looks with a good official range of up to 298 miles, the Ioniq 5 also has soft suspension that does a good job of smoothing out bumps around town, and its steering that’s accurate enough to let you place the car with confidence.

Those peaceful cruising manners mean long journeys won’t be a chore, and your family won’t grumble in the back, either; they’ll have lots of space to stretch out, even if they’re tall.

"Recent suspension tweaks have improved the Hyundai Ioniq 5's handling, but Premium models, with their 20in wheels, still bring a ride which feels a touch too busy." – George Hill, Staff Writer

Read our Hyundai Ioniq 5 review

Our pick: Long Range AWD 5dr Auto

0-62mph: 4.8 sec
CO2 emissions: 0g/km
Seats: 5
Insurance group: 48D
Reliability
Safety
Costs
Quality
Performance

Strengths

  • Rapid acceleration
  • Great range between charges
  • Tesla’s charging infrastructure

Weaknesses

  • Unsettled ride
  • Noisy for an EV
  • A Model 3 is cheaper and better to drive

This Model Y isn't as good as the closely related Tesla Model 3 saloon; its ride can be unsettled and it's quite noisy. 

But there are still plenty of upsides to driving one, though – not least that every version comes with a long range. Indeed, even entry-level versions can take you up to 283 miles according to official figures, while Long Range models can cover up to 331 miles. Of course, you’re unlikely to achieve those figures in real-world use.

Every Model Y feels fast, too, and driving one gives you access to the brilliant Tesla Supercharger network, which offers fast and convenient charging when you need to replenish your batteries.

"Its hatchback boot makes the Tesla Model Y a much more practical option for families than the Model 3" – Claire Evans, Consumer Editor

Read our Tesla Model Y review

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And the electric SUVs to avoid...

Lexus UX

This electric SUV is comfortable and has a strong record for reliability, but a short range, slow charging and frustrating infotainment stop it from being anyhing other than an also-ran in this class. Read our review

Ford Mustang Mach-E

The Mach-E is a well equipped and relatively spacious large electric SUV, but its abrupt ride, so-so build quality and relatively slow maximum charging rate make it impossible to recommend. Read our review

FAQs

Which electric SUV has the best range?

The electric SUV with the longest range is the Fisker Ocean, which according to figures published by its maker can travel up to 440 miles on a single charge in limited-run Ocean One form. That range comes from its enormous 113kWh battery, and would be enough to get you from London to Glasgow on a single charge, and still have enough range for pottering around town.

Remember that you're unlikely to replicate that figure in real-world conditions, though, and that's why we regularly put a selection of electric cars through their paces with our summer and winter range tests, so we can see what they'll really do.

 

 

How reliable are electric SUVs?

The results of our annual What Car? Reliability Survey show that electric SUVs can be very reliable, with the Ford Mustang Mach-E topping our survey as the most reliable electric SUV. Not a single problem was reported among owners in the previous 12 months, meaning it should be a very reliable choice. Other reliable SUVs according to our survey included the BMW iX3 and Tesla Model Y, with only a small percentage of problems reported for both models.

At the other end of the scale, the Vauxhall Mokka Electric is Britain's least reliable electric SUV, with more than 60% of owners experiencing an issue in the previous year. Some of those were big, too, with 40% of respondents telling us that they had problems with their car's battery, and 13% experiencing issues with the motor. 

Does Toyota have an electric SUV?

Although Toyota is well known for its hybrid and plug-in hybrid models, the Japanese brand was relatively late to the party with a modern electric SUV, but in 2022 it launched the Toyota bZ4X. Although it doesn't feature on our list of the best electric SUVs, the bZ4X offers a decent range of up to 317 miles – and we'd expect around 250 miles to be possible in real-world conditions.

The bZ4X is good to drive, and benefits from a spacious interior, which means your passengers have lots of room to stretch out. There's no front boot for extra storage, though, and it can't charge as fast as the rival Kia EV6 and Tesla Model Y.

Will electric cars ever get 500 miles of range?

It's very likely that some electric SUVs will be able to travel up to 500 miles between charges – indeed, some can almost get there now, with the Fisker Ocean reportedly able to travel up to 440 miles between charges. As batteries continue to get larger, and battery technology itself advances, the 500-mile barrier isn't so far away.

Don't expect an electric EV that's capable of 500 miles on a single charge to be cheap, though – indeed, such models are likely to be among the most expensive around. 

To keep costs down, it might be better to explore an electric SUV which has a shorter range, but which can charge quickly. Indeed, the Kia EV6, which tops our list as our favourite electric SUV, can charge at a peak rate of 238kW, meaning you can add significant range over a lunch stop.