What Is the Best Small EV?

EVs are more popular than ever, and it doesn’t seem like they will stop gaining popularity anytime soon. Nowadays, there are all kinds of EVs, from small EVs all the way to full-size electric pickup trucks. When it comes to the small EV segment, there are plenty of options on the market, but here’s a look at what may be the best small EV available right now.

An unstoppable trend of EVs

The Mini Cooper SE Countryman PHEV model parked near windmills
The Mini Cooper SE Countryman PHEV model | BMW OF NORTH AMERICA, LLC.

Not that long ago, EVs were only a novelty that the rich and famous could afford. For example, the Tesla Roadster was an expensive sports car that attracted a lot of media and celebrity attention. However, making expensive EVs was never Tesla’s long-term goal. Tesla wanted to bring EVs to the masses. It didn’t take long for that goal to become a reality.

Nowadays, there are plenty of small, affordable EVs on the market. For example, there’s the Nissan Leaf, which costs about $33,000. While that may seem like a high price tag for a small car, the Leaf, like many EVs, qualifies for the federal EV tax credit. This allows customers to shave off, at most, $7,500 from the Leaf’s price tag.

With that being said, while the Leaf is a well-known affordable small EV, it’s not necessarily the best one. That honor would go to the Mini Cooper SE, according to CNET.  

The Mini Cooper SE is the best small EV

The Mini Cooper SE, which is Mini’s first EV, is actually pretty bad when it comes to specs. However, this Mini is the opposite of the second-place winner in many ways. At a starting price tag of just over $30,000, the Mini Cooper SE is fairly affordable, especially with a federal tax credit factored in. That will pay for a 181-hp electric motor, and that’s the core of the car.

As CNET wrote, the Mini Cooper SE is simply fun to drive. Not only that, but its interior is also pretty great too. To be clear, the Mini Cooper SE is not a sports car, and its specs reflect that. Regardless, it’s still one of the speediest cars someone can buy at an affordable price tag. That being said, while the Mini Cooper SE is fun to drive, folks won’t be able to drive it for long.

This is because of the Mini Cooper SE’s biggest flaw. Perhaps living up to its brand name, the Mini Cooper SE’s battery is pretty miniature. As a result, this small EV has a max range of just 110 miles. That’s not a great range no matter what, but it should be OK for city driving. At the very least, it can recharge to 80% in just 30 minutes with a fast charger.

The Chevy Bolt is the second best small EV

According to CNET, the Bolt is one of the other well-known small EVs on the market, so it’s no surprise that it was the runner-up. Like many other cars, though, the Bolt isn’t perfect, and it has its share of flaws. For example, the Bolt, even with its 200-hp electric motor, was not designed for excitement. On top of that, its interior quality isn’t the best. Plus, it’s a tad expensive, as it starts at over $36,000. 

However, the Bolt gets a lot of range for a car of its size and price tag. It gets about 259 miles on a single charge, and that’s more than enough for many families. Additionally, since it’s a hatchback, it actually has quite a bit of space. With its rear seats folded down, the Bolt gets just over 56 cubic feet of cargo capacity. 

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