These are the 10 best electric cars of the year

These are the 10 best electric cars of the year

We knew this was coming. They warned us. The electric car revolution is upon us and we couldn’t be happier. In 2022, we’ll have more EV choices than ever before, with a wide range of prices, styles and capabilities.

The editors of Autotrader have driven and lived with the electric cars of the model year 2022. We asked the right questions about the interior, exterior, powertrains, driving behaviour, features, comfort and of course the prices. Do they serve the purpose for which they were built? Whether that goal is to commute efficiently to and from work in the city, to keep your family safe, to make you feel like you’ve reached the top — or on your way — or to make you feel like you finally have just the right partner for your lifestyle.

We take every electric vehicle we test through everyday life — parking, changing lanes, reversing, testing load space and charging — as well as the essentials — acceleration, braking, handling, quiet and comfortable interior, build quality and material quality.

With the research behind us, the discussions began, with each editor contributing their opinion, expertise and rating on a 5-point scale, with 5 being the best. To meet the last consideration, the 2022 model year electric vehicles had to receive a minimum of 4.0 out of 5.0 points from our editors. For the first time this year, only pure EVs were allowed on our list. We have not taken into account hybrids, plug-in hybrids or vehicles with hydrogen fuel cells. All electric cars, SUVs and trucks on this list must be generally available to the public within six months of this list being published.

Here are Autotrader’s picks for the 10 best electric vehicles of 2022, listed alphabetically by brand.

2022 Chevrolet Bolt/Bolt EUV

In a year when big money electric cars dominated the landscape, the populist Chevrolet Bolt got a makeover and a slightly bigger EUV (Electric Utility Vehicle) brother. The Bolt carries the Chevrolet electric car torch as it is Chevy’s only EV for now. The Bolt’s new exterior and interior designs corrected the minor shortcomings of the outgoing model, and the improved battery capacity and motor made the EV even more capable. Executive Editor Brian Moody says: “The Bolt and the Bolt EUV combine practicality and affordability in a way not normally seen in electric cars. It is also quite fast.”

2022 Ford Mustang Mach-E

The Ford Mustang Mach-E

James Lipman/Ford

Taking the name from one of the original pony cars hasn’t slowed down the Ford F,
Mustang Mach-E’s gallop. The fast and furious electric SUV has its own appeal. Jeff Glucker, Autotrader’s video host and editor, says, “The Ford Mustang Mach-E has a great interior, a fun exterior and you don’t have to spend up to the GT version to have a great time.”

More: Ford’s electric Mustang Mach-E is hot and getting scarce

2022 GMC Hummer EV Pickup

The Hummer truck


first all-electric pickup revives the Hummer nameplate, this time as a sub-brand of GMC. While the original Hummer SUVs were gas-guzzling behemoths, the new GMC Hummer EV Pickup is a monstrously capable, fast, quiet, electron-powered beauty – and it can scratch. Autotrader editor-in-chief Brian Moody calls the new electric Hummer “an impressive truck on and off the road. This is a brand new vehicle that they have found well.” Using the available rear-wheel steering, the large EV can maneuver on trails and in parking lots in a way that other large vehicles can only imagine.

Related: The 11 Best Features of the Hummer EV

2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5

The 2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5


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continues to refine its Ioniq concept and the 2022 Hyundai Ioniq 5 is the best version yet. We look forward to more electric Hyundai cars. As Autotrader editor-in-chief Brian Moody said, “The Hyundai Ioniq 5 is probably the coolest EV you can get. It’s futuristic through and through, but also has a fun, retro vibe. The driving experience, especially the progressive regenerative braking, is refined and seamless.”

2022 Kia EV6

The Kia EV6


Kia’s 000270,
electric cars are a little different. We love the bold look of both the EV6 and the Niro. In addition to pure functionality, Kia has pushed design boundaries with their new electric car, the 2022 Kia EV6. And why not? Doesn’t a new generation of transport deserve a new look? “I like the tightness of the Kia EV6,” said Frankie Rogers, associate editor of Autotrader. “In profile, it looks like a rocket cutting through traffic. A very bold look from Kia compared to previous vehicles such as the Soul.”

2022 Mercedes-EQ EQS

The Mercedes-EQ EQS


Mercedes-Benz has been including electric power in its range for several years with EQ Boost. The Mercedes-Benz electric cars are here and the 2022 Mercedes-EQ EQS is a winner. It’s a real luxury EV where Elon Musk should be shaking in his fancy hipster shoes. According to Jeff Glucker, “The interior is excellent at S-Class level.” That is indeed a lot of praise. Driving the EQS sedan through the streets of Atlanta, editor Rob Nestora noted how many “Oooh’s and ahh’s” the car generates. He also likes the light show of the headlights when you switch them on, as well as the atmospheric interior lighting.

2022 Rivian R1T

The Rivian R1T


Rivian RIVN,
is an enticing start-up electric car maker – so enticing that Cox Automotive, the parent company of Autotrader, invested $350 million in the company in 2019. The fruits of that investment are beginning to ripen with the arrival of the 2022 R1T electric pickup, Rivian’s first consumer vehicle. The impressive EV, measuring between a medium and a large truck, is packed with technological innovations and beautiful details, such as a large trunk in the front and an extra trunk in the back. Renee Valdes, Autotrader’s advisory editor, says, “I love the extra storage space under the bed in the Rivian R1T. It’s an unexpected hidden compartment.”

2022 Tesla Model 3

The Tesla Model 3


Possibly the most successful and unconventional automaker in the world right now, Tesla TSLA,
continues to release variants on its all-electric car theme. “The main reason for choosing a Model 3 is the driving experience. It’s sharp and fast,” said Brian Moody, editor-in-chief of Autotrader. While the 2022 Tesla Model 3 still focuses on luxury and advanced technology, it is the most affordable electric car in the company’s range and still offers excellent range, performance and available driver assistance features. While true autonomous driving is still a long way off, the Model 3 offers a glimpse of the possibilities, all on battery power alone.

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2022 Volkswagen ID.4

The Volkswagen ID.4


We know a large number of Volkswagen VWAGYs,
electric cars are coming. As we breathlessly await the arrival of the super cool retro-style ID.Buzz minivan, the 2022 Volkswagen ID.4 impressed our team with its smooth integration of function with form. It retains its essential “VW-ness” even without a combustion engine. Could this be VW’s next Beetle? Associate editor Rob Nestora says, “Volkswagen’s ID.4 is like an Apple AAPL,
device on wheels. The interior is modern and functional, and the exterior is attractive without being ostentatious. Like other VWs, the ID.4 is fun to drive.”

2022 Volvo C40 Charging

The Volvo C40 Recharge


Volvo’s commitment to electrification has expanded beyond the SUV range to include its first all-electric compact car, the 2022 Volvo C40 Recharge. Since Volvo VLVLY,
rebooted itself over the past decade, it has maintained its core identity as a leader in transportation safety and has elevated its interiors to the luxury category. Bringing all of these together, the C40 Recharge delivers a stylish, comfortable, capable electric car with a distinctly Swedish twist. Brian Moody, editor-in-chief of Autotrader, says: “Volvo’s electric car game is strong. Volvo is one of those car manufacturers where electric driving just makes sense.”

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