Electric Car Awards 2022: Best electric MPV

With electrified cars now coming in all shapes and sizes – and available to suit every budget – we’ve named the best models in every class. Here we look at the best electric MPV...

Best electric MPV

Vauxhall Combo-e Life SE

2022 Electric Car Awards logo - vertical blue

Dungarees, we're told, are big news in fashion right now, proving that something practical can be just as trendy as the slinkier, more provocatively styled alternatives. That’s good news for the Vauxhall Combo Life, which, stylistically, is rather more Postman Pat than Penelope Pitstop.

Mind you, this square-rigged MPV picked up extra fashion points last year, when the petrol and diesel versions were dropped leaving only the fully electric Combo-e in the showroom. In fact, alongside the near-identical Citroën e-Berlingo and Peugeot e-Rifter, you’re looking at some of the first fully electric MPVs on sale in the UK, and innovation such as this can only be a good thing.

When you think about it, electric power is a perfect fit for an MPV. Such cars are designed to ferry a family around, and with zero tailpipe emissions, it can take your children to and from school in a far cleaner fashion than the fossil-fuelled SUVs that are far more common.

Best electric MPV 2022 - Vauxhall-Combo-e Life dashboard

Actually, you might be surprised how easily it fits in with family life. With most big supermarket chains installing electric car chargers, you can top up while doing the weekly shop. And, if you’re able to have a wall charger installed at home, there’ll potentially be no time-consuming trips to fill up.

The Combo-e is easy to drive, too; thanks to the instant power delivery of its electric motor, keeping up with city traffic is a breeze, and stressed-out parents will love how quiet it is.

Of course, there’s no mistaking the e-Combo for a sports car; you’ll have to get used to a reasonable amount of body lean in corners due to its height, but it actually handles quite tidily, with plenty of grip and light yet accurate steering. The ride is well controlled for an electric car, too; it absorbs the worst shocks from potholes at low speeds and is nicely settled at higher speeds.

Best electric MPV 2022 - Vauxhall-Combo-e Life rear seats

This all makes this electric MPV a compelling family car choice, but why should you pick the Combo-e Life over the aforementioned e-Berlingo and e-Rifter?

Well, the simple fact is that the Combo-e Life gives you more kit and practicality for your money. It’s cheaper on PCP finance, yet shows its relatives up by giving you alloy wheels, a digital instrument cluster, rear parking sensors and a reversing camera as standard. It also offers a handy opening glass rear window, which is a boon in tight parking spaces, because you don’t have to open the enormous tailgate to load up the boot.

All this adds up to make the Combo-e Life the best and most stress-free electric MPV choice. It may not be glamorous, but it’ll suit every occasion.

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