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Electric vehicles are improving every year, and now you can find sedans as well as electrified sport utility vehicles. Out of all the choices out there, which one is the most popular and is it good enough to win Car and Driver’s EV of the year? Let’s find out. 

Which vehicles were in the running and which one won EV of the Year?

Car and Driver reports that this is the third year the publication has done one of these contests for electric vehicles. For 2023 the EVs that were competing included:

  • Audi Q4 e-tron
  • BMW i7
  • Cadillac Lyriq AWD
  • Genesis Electrified GV70
  • GMC Hummer EV
  • Hyundai Ioniq 6
  • Kia EV6 GT
  • Kia Niro EV
  • Lexus RZ450e
  • Lucid Air Pure AWD
  • Mercedes-Benz EQE350 4Matic+
  • Nissan Ariya
  • Toyota bZ4x
  • VinFast VF8

The model that came away with the win was the 2023 Hyundai Ioniq 6, which shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise since the Ioniq 5 won last year. This year’s winner offers both a single and dual motor setup depending on the trim you choose. The test vehicle Car and Driver evaluated was a dual-motor Limited, which could go approximately 220 miles of driving range, even though it’s rated for about 50 miles more.  

The electric motor system produces a total of 225 hp (for the C&D test vehicle) and 258 lb-ft of torque. This enabled the car to go from 0 to 60 mph in 4.3 seconds. Even its braking performance impressed the judges with a distance of 182 feet from 70 mph to zero. As for runner-ups, the Genesis Electrified GV70 and the Kia EV6 GT came the closest. 

Out of all the electric vehicles now on the market, the one considered to be the world’s most popular EV happens to be the Tesla Model Y. You may have noticed that the Car and Driver list didn’t even list this model as a competitor, nor was any Tesla vehicle seen there for that matter. 

With two versions to choose from, the Long Range ($54,990) and Performance ($58,990) models, you get quite a bit for the money. The Long Range version offers 330 miles (AWD) of driving range and its powertrain produces 425 hp and 475 lb-ft. Tesla’s Model Y Performance version gives you 303 miles of driving range and a motor output of 456 hp and 496 lb-ft of torque. 

However, being the most popular EV doesn’t necessarily make it the best EV of the year as we see from C&D’s competition. 

What kept the Model Y from being an EV of the Year?

Car and Driver shares that EVs are always evolving and what used to impress, like charging times, are usually bested by another EV the following year. The publication even explains that an EV that wows this year will be just average the next and then outdated two years later. In order to win C&D’s EV of the Year award, you need to wow the editors. 

While the Tesla Model Y turns heads with many, especially critics, it hasn’t offered anything new this year to make it a competitor. Actually, no other Tesla model has either.   

The world’s most popular EV is the Tesla Model Y for its exceptional features and outstanding performance. But, what makes you popular doesn’t always make you a winner. Car and Driver shows you that with its EV of the Year model, the Hyundai Ioniq, which brings something new and fresh to the table. 


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