Best Cheap Electric Cars

Chances are you're attracted to an all-electric car for the significant savings in annual running costs. If you're looking to minimize your car-related costs, then consider one of the cars on this page. They offer the best value for an all-electric car in the UK.

All prices reflect the £4,500 government grant that the dealer uses to reduce the list price. To see the extent of savings you can make with an electric car vs an ICE, see our How Much Can You Save with an All-Electric Car? article.

Best Cheap All-Electric Cars

Renault Zoe Expression NAV R90

Key Features

  • 90-mile range
  • 22kWh battery
  • £19,845 starting on-the-road price (£14,245 without battery)
  • Battery hire starts at £49/month, mileage dependent

The cheapest all-electric car on the market is the Renault Zoe, Expression NAV R90 model. With one of the smallest batteries available (22 kWh), expect a real-life range of around 90 miles (106 in summer, 71 in winter) per full charge. Those looking to minimize their initial purchase price have the option to hire the battery instead of buying it.

Purchased with a battery the Zoe Expression R90's on-the-road price starts at £19,845. Buying the car without the battery knocks £5,600 off the purchase price, bringing the on-the-road price down to £14,245. Leasing the battery will cost you between £49 and £89 per month, depending on mileage. Another advantage to hiring the battery is less anxiety over battery obsolescence a few years down the line as technology improves.

Nissan Leaf 24 kWh

Key Features

  • 80 or 130-mile range
  • 24 kWh or 30 kWh battery
  • £21,680 on-the-road starting price (after £4,500 grant)

The Nissan Leaf is another top pick for cheap all-electric car, due to the large boot space. Not only does it seat 5 to accommodate extra kids, but the boot space is a generous 370 litres behind the seats for school bags, sports bags and some shopping. To get an idea of the space, the Leaf's boot provides just about the same amount of storage as the Volkswagen Golf's 380 litres. If you ever need more storage space, folding the rear seats will provide 720 litres of room. Choose from a 24 kWh or 30 kWh battery, which will give you realistic ranges around 80 miles and 130 miles, respectively.

Electric Car Prices

Depending on your budget, you can get your seat into an all-electric car for as little as £14,245 (plus battery hire) for a Renault Zoe Expression or pay over £100,000 for some Tesla models. We've researched the UK electric car market and gathered starting on-the-road prices, as shown in the following table. On-the-road prices include VAT and delivery charges and also reflect the government grant that knocks £4,500 off the list price.

On-the-Road Starting Price for Electric Cars (after government grant)
Including BatteryExcluding Battery
Renault Zoe 22kW R90£19,845£14,245
Nissan Leaf 24kWh£21,680
Renault Zoe Z.E.40 R90£23,770
Nissan Leaf 30kWh£25,790£18,170
BMW i3 94Ah£28,570
Tesla S 75£61,880
Tesla S 75D£66,880
Tesla S P100D£90,380
Tesla S 100D£132,180
chart showing starting prices of electric cars
How Much Do Electric Cars Cost?

Battery Hire: Another Way to Save Money

If you're looking to reduce the upfront price of your electric car, one option is buying the car without the battery, instead hiring the battery. You don't own the battery, you rent it. This will save you around £5k initially but you'll instead sign up to a monthly contract. The price of this monthly contract will depend on your expected annual mileage. The more you plan to drive, the more your battery hire will cost.

Battery Hire from Renault

Battery hire is not available on all makes of cars. Hiring a battery from Renault will drop the car price by £5,600 and cost you between £49 and £110 per month. You can see how battery hire changes according to estimated annual mileage in the following chart.

Renault Zoe Battery Hire Monthly Prices

Annual Mileage4,5006,0007,5009,00010,500Unlimited
22kWh Battery£49£59£69£89£89n/a
Z.E. 40 Battery£59£69£79£99£99£110