Vauxhall Mokka Electric review

Category: Electric car

The Mokka Electric has sharp looks and is relatively comfy, but rivals are better all-rounders 

Green Vauxhall Mokka Electric front right driving
  • Green Vauxhall Mokka Electric front right driving
  • Neil Winn test driving electric Vauxhall Mokka
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric boot open
  • Neil Winn charging a green Vauxhall Mokka Electric
  • Green Vauxhall Mokka Electric right driving
  • Green Vauxhall Mokka Electric front cornering
  • Green Vauxhall Mokka Electric front right driving
  • Green Vauxhall Mokka Electric rear left driving
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric left static boot open
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric interior front seats
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric interior back seats
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric interior dashboard
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric interior steering wheel detail
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric interior infotainment
  • Green Vauxhall Mokka Electric front right driving
  • Neil Winn test driving electric Vauxhall Mokka
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric boot open
  • Neil Winn charging a green Vauxhall Mokka Electric
  • Green Vauxhall Mokka Electric right driving
  • Green Vauxhall Mokka Electric front cornering
  • Green Vauxhall Mokka Electric front right driving
  • Green Vauxhall Mokka Electric rear left driving
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric left static boot open
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric interior front seats
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric interior back seats
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric interior dashboard
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric interior steering wheel detail
  • Vauxhall Mokka Electric interior infotainment
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by
Neil Winn
Published09 January 2024

Introduction

What Car? says...

The Vauxhall Mokka Electric reminds us that, as electric cars become increasingly popular, we'll one day drop the word "electric" from conversations about them altogether – and simply call them "cars".

If Vauxhall has anything to do with it, that moment could come sooner than we all think. Instead of going down the route of designing a bespoke electric SUV (as Skoda and Volkswagen did with the Enyaq iV and ID.4), it's effectively offering electric power as just another engine option for the Vauxhall Mokka small SUV.

As the brand puts it, “Electric, Petrol, Diesel – Your Call”. In fact, aside from a few ‘e’ badges on its flanks and a charging port instead of a fuel filler, there isn’t a whole lot to differentiate the Mokka Electric from a regular Mokka.

Not that it doesn’t look swish. With styling inspired by the GT X Experimental Concept car unveiled by Vauxhall a while back, including that model’s bold Vizor front-end design, you’re certainly not going to lose it in a car park. 

Under the surface, the Mokka-e shares underpinnings with the DS 3 Crossback E-Tense and the Peugeot e-2008. Other rivals include the Hyundai Kona Electric, the Kia Niro EV and the VW ID.3 plus electric cars that cost a bit less, such as the great-value MG ZS EV and the Mazda MX-30.

Green Vauxhall Mokka Electric rear cornering

Overview

The Vauxhall Mokka Electric offers buyers sharp looks, a decent range, a generous amount of standard kit and a relatively comfy and quiet ride. However, if you’re looking for a funky city electric car, or a do-it-all model, there are better options available.

  • Pretty comfortable
  • Impressively quiet at speed
  • Plenty of standard kit
  • Niro EV and ID 3 have longer ranges
  • Cheap feeling interior
  • Not that quick by EV standards
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Performance & drive

What it’s like to drive, and how quiet it is

If your main priority is performance, the Vauxhall Mokka Electric doesn't exactly stand out from the crowd. The electric motor's 134bhp officially results in a 0-60mph time of 9.2 seconds and a top speed of 93mph. We found it quicker in the real world than the numbers suggest, and saw 8.6 seconds during tests.

Even in Sport driving mode, you don’t get the instant shove many electric SUVs deliver. While that’s not a problem around town, it does mean that overtaking at speeds above 40mph requires more planning than it would in, say, the Kia Niro EV Long Range or VW ID.3 Pro Performance.

Acceleration is one thing, but how far an electric car can travel before it needs plugging in is more important to many buyers. In the Mokka-e, the official answer is a WLTP-certified range of 209 miles. That’s perfectly acceptable in a class of cars that includes the Honda e, the Mazda MX-30 and the Mini Electric – none of which can travel as far – but it’s some way short of the Niro EV’s claimed 285 miles or the ID.3 Pro Performance’s 264 miles.

Vauxhall Mokka image
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Of course, you’re unlikely to get anywhere near those ranges in the real world unless you’re driving gently around town in warm conditions. We managed 151 miles in the Mokka-e on a mix of roads on a warm day. That's a little less than the 39kWh Hyundai Kona Electric and well down on the 58kWh ID 3. If range is important to you, we’d steer you towards the 64kWh Kona Electric and the Niro EV, which both have a real-world range of more than 200 miles.

If you try to press on in the Mokka Electric, you’ll soon find that it’s not a car that’s happy to be hustled. The steering is more naturally weighted and linear in its responses than on the Peugeot e-2008 but you’ll feel bumps kicking back through the wheel’s rim if you’re cornering quickly. There’s a lot more body lean than you’d find in the Kona Electric and the poised ID 3, and it doesn’t feel particularly keen to change direction in a hurry.

Grip levels are decent enough, if not as high as on those rivals, but its roly-poly nature and general lack of composure mean you’ll soon slow down to focus on conserving the battery instead. The soft springs translate to a comfortable motorway ride, with only the odd expansion joint sending a thud through the car.

The Mokka Electric doesn’t deal with potholes and broken surfaces at lower speeds as adroitly as the ID 3 but it’s certainly more comfortable than the overly firm Kona Electric, and doesn’t buck about on undulating roads like the bouncy DS3 Crossback E-Tense does.

The regenerative braking means the brake pedal is rather inconsistent – it can be difficult to judge how much pressure to apply to the pedal to slow down smoothly, and that can take a while to get used to. Better news is that the Mokka Electric is very refined by class standards, with minimal wind, road and suspension noise. It’s significantly quieter than the ID.3, for example.

Neil Winn test driving electric Vauxhall Mokka

Interior

The interior layout, fit and finish

While it's not much taller than a small hatchback, the Vauxhall Mokka Electric is technically an SUV. To give you a more commanding view of the road, the seats are mounted quite high up and the tall bonnet (which you can see from the driver’s seat) gives you the impression that you’re driving a ‘proper’ sports utility vehicle.

That slightly elevated driving position also gives you decent visibility to the front and the sides, which is handy when negotiating junctions. Taller drivers have found that the pillar between the front and rear doors can get in the way with the seat set to their preferred position, so if you're a six-footer, try before you buy.

Over-the-shoulder visibility is hampered somewhat by a rising window line and chunky pillars. That's less of a problem in the Kia Niro EV with its taller windows and thinner pillars. At least the Mokka Electric comes with rear parking sensors and a rear-view camera as standard (if you want front sensors you’ll need to step up to Ultimate trim).

Even if you go for the entry-level GS Line trim, you get bright LED headlights to help with visibility at night. Drive at night a lot? The Ultimate trim upgrades those headlights to adaptive matrix LED ones that can shape their light output to avoid dazzling other road users with full beam selected.

You’ll find a good range of adjustment to the reach and height of the steering wheel and driver’s seat, so you should be able to find a comfortable driving position. That's not something you can say about the closely-related Peugeot e-2008 and its awkward iCockpit set-up and high mounted dials.

Lumbar support isn’t available with either trim level or as an option, but none of our testers suffered back ache after a couple of hours in a Mokka Electric. 

The rest of the dashboard is well laid out and easy to get the hang of, and you get physical buttons and knobs for the climate control and media volume. The e-2008 and VW ID.3 get touch-sensitive controls instead, which are more distracting.

The Mokka Electric’s 12.0in digital instrument display has a simple layout that's easy to read at a glance and is far more customisable than the dinky one in the ID 3.

The infotainment system is virtually identical to the unit you get in the e-2008, and that's not ideal. With laggy software, a confusing layout and clunky graphics, the 10.0in system can be quite frustrating to use.

It’s also worth pointing out that the temperature is displayed either side of the screen so you never really get all 10.0in dedicated to your current menu.

Both systems at least get Android Auto and Apple CarPlay smartphone mirroring as standard, allowing you to bypass the Vauxhall software and use your phone’s interface instead.

The physical shortcut buttons below the screen make it far less distracting to use on the move than the touchscreen-only systems in some rivals, including the ID.3. 

In terms of interior quality, the Mokka Electric is a bit of a let-down compared to many electric cars. Visually, it has the flair to match its striking exterior but the materials aren't nearly as plush as the equivalents used in the e-2008 or Niro EV.

Vauxhall Mokka Electric boot open

Passenger & boot space

How it copes with people and clutter

The Vauxhall Mokka Electric doesn't feel as open or airy as the Kia Niro EV or the VW ID.3 but even tall drivers will find plenty of head room and decent leg room.

There’s also a reasonable amount of storage space, including a well-sized glovebox, a couple of good-sized door bins and a surprisingly large storage tray at the bottom of the dash.

The tray is big enough to take a hefty wallet or a large smartphone, and you’ll find the wireless charging pad there on Ultimate Nav models. The Hyundai Kona Electric and ID.3 have even more cubbies up front.

You feel a lot more hemmed-in in the back because of the tall window line and a tapered roofline, but you’ll be better off than you would be in the back of the DS3 Crossback E-Tense, the Mazda MX-30 and the Renault Zoe. The relatively compact Kona Electric has more room, though. 

The Mokka’s issue isn’t rear head room – that’s passable – it’s the poor rear leg room that’ll cause six-footers to feel wedged into the back with their knees pressed up against the front seat backs. If you want to carry lanky friends, you’re far better served by the Niro EV or ID 3.

It’s a shame the Mokka Electric doesn’t offer sliding or reclining rear seats. They're split 60/40 rather than the more versatile 40/20/40, limiting your options when you have passengers and luggage to fit onboard. There’s no ski flap to allow you to carry long items with a couple of rear passengers sitting in comfort.

The boot is pretty disappointing by class standards, too. There’s enough for a weekly shop or short family holiday, but rivals such as the Niro EV, MX-30, ID 3 and even the Zoe offer more space.

To put things in perspective, we squeezed four carry-on suitcases into the Mokka Electric’s boot compared with five in the ID 3. 

It does come with a height-adjustable boot floor that allows you to separate the space into two compartments, which is handy if you want to stop your charging cables sliding around in the main compartment.

Neil Winn charging a green Vauxhall Mokka Electric

Buying & owning

Everyday costs, plus how reliable and safe it is

If you’re in the market for a relatively affordable electric car and you’re not too bothered about passenger space or battery range, there are quite a few cheaper options than the Vauxhall Mokka Electric.

They include the All-Electric Fiat 500, the Honda e, the Hyundai Kona Electric, the Mazda MX-30 and the Mini Electric.

The larger Kia Niro EV Long Range, the Peugeot e-2008 and the VW ID.3 are a bit more expensive but the Mokka Electric is predicted to suffer from heavier depreciation than many of those. That make it less appealing for private buyers. 

Thankfully, there are often Vauxhall deals available to help bring monthly PCP costs in line with rivals.

If you’re a company car driver, electric cars look good value thanks to the benefit-in-kind (BIK) tax savings they offer over a petrol or diesel.

If you do decide on a Mokka Electric, we’d recommend sticking with the entry-level GS Line trim. It comes with a haul of goodies, including adaptive cruise control, rain-sensitive windscreen wipers, keyless start, heated front seats, automatic climate control and a flat-bottomed, leather-wrapped steering wheel.

For something a bit fancier, the top-spec Ultimate trim won’t set you back all that much more and adds automatic parking assist, Alcantara interior trim, a moveable boot floor and matrix LED headlights.  

How long does it take to charge the Mokka Electric? Well, you’re looking at around 7.5hrs from a 7kW home wall box (0-100%) or 45 minutes (0-80%) using a 50kW service station charger. If you can find a 100kW charger, you can get that charge in 30 minutes – enough time to grab a coffee and panini to go. 

When it was tested by Euro NCAP in 2021, the Vauxhall Mokka-e scored four stars out of five, which is a bit disappointing when most modern cars score five. Still, automatic emergency braking (AEB), lane-keeping assistance, adaptive cruise control and a driver drowsiness alert system are fitted across the range. Blind-spot monitoring is standard with Ultimate trim.

In terms of reliability, the Mokka Electric did badly in the 2023 What Car? Reliability Survey while Vauxhall as a manufacturer finished in 30th place out of 32 car makers listed. Every new Vauxhall comes with a three-year, 60,000-mile warranty. The main battery is covered for eight years or 100,000 miles.

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FAQs

  • Possibly not: the Mokka Electric itself and Vauxhall as a brand did badly in the 2023 What Car? Reliability Survey. Vauxhall claimed 30th place out of 32 manufacturers listed, above only Alfa Romeo and Cupra. The Mokka Electric comes with a three-year/60,000-mile warranty, plus main battery cover for eight years/100,000 miles.

  • Officially, it can cover 201 miles before the battery reaches 0%, but you probably won’t see that range in the real world. On a hot day and a mixture of roads, we managed to cover 151 miles.

  • When Euro NCAP tested the model for safety, it awarded the model four stars out of five, which is disappointing. It was found to offer poor neck protection for a 10-year-old sat in the rear and did not do a very good job of preventing an adult occupant in the front from moving sideways across the car during a side impact.

At a glance
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RRP price range £24,660 - £42,295
Number of trims (see all)3
Number of engines (see all)5
Available fuel types (which is best for you?)electric, petrol
MPG range across all versions 47.9 - 51.4
Available doors options 5
Warranty 3 years / 60000 miles
Company car tax at 20% (min/max) £73 / £1,967
Company car tax at 40% (min/max) £146 / £3,935
Available colours