The ever increasing number of electric vehicles entering the market means a greater choice for buyers in terms of price and the types of vehicles on offer.
This makes comparing EVs difficult, though there is one factor that’s important to most buyers whether they’re buying a high-performance Tesla Model S or a Hyundai Kona Electric crossover – the distance they can travel between charging.
Vehicle range is mainly dictated by battery size and capacity, vehicle weight, and the output of their electric motors. In other words, the price of the vehicle doesn’t necessarily dictate how far it can go.
We’ve compiled a list of long-range EVs either already in Australia - or well on their way - based on their European WLTP (World Harmonised Light Vehicle Test) range or, in the case of Tesla models, US EPA testing.
The actual range an electric vehicle can travel on a single charge can be compromised by things such as hills and the use of in-car features such as air-conditioning, though anything more than 400km should provide more than enough electrons for the average Aussie weekly commute. That said, unlike combustion-engine powered cars, electric cars can actually have a better range in busy urban conditions, as coasting and braking helps charge the batteries.
Battery capacity: 100kWh
EPA Range: 537km
Despite the influx of electric vehicles from established vehicle manufacturers, the Tesla Model S continues to be the EV benchmark. The Tesla Model S prestige sedan is available in two variants in Australia, including the potent Performance which has 100kWh battery capacity, and the Long Range.
Tesla Model 3 Performance
Battery capacity: 75kWh
EPA range: 518km
Tesla's golden boy at the moment is the Model 3 which has won awards all over the world including our WhichCar Style Award for 2020. But talking of its range, it can certainly go the extra mile as well returning a very respectable 518km on an EPA cycle or 530km on a WLTP test.
Battery capacity: 100kWh
EPA range: 475km
Riding on the same base as the Tesla Model S showing off distinctive gull-wing rear doors, the Model X SUV sets the scene for the luxury electric SUVs, which is becoming one of the quickest growing EV segments.
Price: $119,000 - $140,800
Battery capacity: 90kWh
WLPT range: 469km
Jaguar’s foray into all-electric driving is as much about performance as it is efficiency, with the Jaguar I-Pace five-seat SUV capable of accelerating from 0-100km/h in just 4.8 seconds thanks to two very powerful electric motors. An 80 percent charge takes about 10 hours using a home charger, or just 40 minutes at a specialised public charging station. Once charged, the battery has enough stored energy to top up 9000 smartphones.
Price: $55,000 (estimated)
Battery capacity: 64kWh
WLTP range: 455km
Due to arrive in Australia in later in 2020, the battery-electric version of Kia’s Niro small-SUV will be offered here with a 64kWh battery pack that provides an official WLTP range of 485km between charges which can extend to 615km on urban roads. The batteries can be charged to 80 percent in about 45 minutes using a 100kW fast charger.
Price: From $59,990
Battery capacity: 64kWh
WLTP range: 449km
After going on sale last year, the electrified version of the popular Hyundai Kona crossover had its WLTP range downgraded from 470km in December 2018 to a still very practical 449km. The Kona Electric can be charged to 80 percent in just under an hour using a fast charger, or fully charged in 10 hours by plugging it into a standard electrical socket.
Battery capacity: 80kWh
WLPT range: 434km
With a quoted range of 434km and free Chargefox network use for the first five years of ownership, range anxiety ought to be minimised somewhat with the EQC.
Price: $140,000 (estimated)
Battery capacity: 95kWh
WLTP range: 400km
The long-delayed E-Tron, Audi’s first mass-produced EV, features three motors (two at the rear axle and one at the front) that combine to produce 320kW and a whopping 800Nm of torque. This power drives all four wheels via a special electronic quattro all-wheel-drive system. Audi says the E-Tron will take as little as 30 minutes with a DC fast charger. Expect to see it in Australia before 2021.
Battery capacity: 40kWh
WLTP range: 270km
Now in its second generation, the Nissan Leaf remains as one of the most successful ‘affordable’ EVs. Actually, it is the best-selling EV globally.
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