Best and worst electric cars for reliability

Electric cars may offer cheap running costs, but they are expensive to buy and tend to have a much lower range than cars with conventional engines. So they need to be reliable to keep buyers happ...

Best and worst electric cars for reliability

Best and worst electric cars for reliability

Electric cars are still a relatively new concept for the public, so they need to be dependable to attract buyers and keep them happy. If you want to buy the the most reliable electric vehicle, check out the results of our 2017 Reliability Survey.

We asked more than 14,200 people to tell us about any faults their cars had suffered during the past 12 months, how long the problem kept the car off the road and how much they'd had to pay to get it fixed.

Those that had the least problems and were cheapest to fix gained the top ratings in the study, while those that languished in workshops for days on end and racked up expensive repair bills were given the lowest scores.

Here's our round-up of the best and worst electric cars for reliability.

Read the full Reliability Survey results

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Best electric cars for reliability

Tesla Model S

4. Tesla Model S

Score 52.4%

Nearly 38% of Model S owners reported faults, with issues split fairly evenly between bodywork, interior trim and electric motors. Owners also told us about broken exterior door handles and other bodywork problems, as well as some faults with exterior lights. Although all cars were fixed under warranty, some were off the road for more than a week.

Read our full Tesla Model S review

Best electric cars for reliability

Renault Zoe

3. Renault Zoe

Score 65.1%

Almost 32% of Zoes had faults, with the most common area of complaint being non-engine electrics; owners mentioned broken heaters and air-con systems. They also reported issues with the bodywork and the cars’ charging systems. All faults were fixed for free, though, and most were back on the road in less than a week. However, a few cars were rendered not driveable and lingered in garages for more than seven days.

Read our full Renault Zoe review

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Best electric cars for reliability

BMW i3

2. BMW i3

Score 88.5%

Less than 12% of i3s had a fault and most were fixed for free in less than a week. The areas affected were more serious, though, and included the battery, charge system, non-engine electrics and suspension.

Read our full BMW i3 review

See how much you could save on a BMW i3 >

Best electric cars for reliability

Nissan Leaf

1. Nissan Leaf

Score 93.9%

At the top of the heap is the Leaf with a reliability rating of 94%. Owners reported faults on less than 8% of cars in three areas: bodywork, brakes and non-engine electrics. All the problems were fixed for free and most in less than a week.

Read our full Nissan Leaf review

See how much you could save on a Nissan Leaf >