Cheapest Electric Car UK: Best EVs On A Low Budget
So you’ve decided to go electric, is that right? And you want to know what the cheapest electric car in the UK is?
Well, you’ve come to the right place.
You couldn’t have chosen a better time, given the impending ban on combustion engines, and the amount of public charging stations you now have at your disposal. Stations that are probably going to fill up with customers as more zero emissions-savvy buyers begin making the switch.
We’ve covered whether or not you should buy an electric car now or wait before. This post is for those who’ve decided to buy now – or those who are simply interested in cheap electric cars, generally.
Let’s preface this cheapest electric car UK post with this: you can save money on an EV.
Don’t let your friends/family tell you otherwise.
The “electric cars are too expensive” statement is true to some extent, as people tend to look at the likes of Tesla when entertaining the idea of owning an EV. There are cheaper alternatives out there, you simply need to look for them.
Besides, pricing has gotten a lot better in recent years, allowing you to find a cheap electric car without worry.
Here, we’ll show you.
Cheapest Electric Cars In The UK: The Top 10
Multiple manufacturers can be found in this list, which is great for customers as it means you have options.
And people do pick sides when it comes to their favourite car brands.
We won’t spoil the electric cars in our list just yet. Just expect to budget between £12,000 to £26,000. Prices may vary in later months/years as new vehicles are released.
The current market is pretty saturated in terms of how many electric cars are out there. This puts buyers in a very comfortable position, able to pick out one of many rides.
Rewind the clock a few years, and you’ll see a completely different EV landscape.
Remember to take advantage of any relevant government grants/schemes. We’ve covered all of this in a separate post. You can read all about these electric car deals right here.
We should mention that the prices you’re about to see are after deductions. Meaning we’ve already applied the £2,500 plug-in-grant for you.
Below you’ll find the cheapest electric cars in the UK.
Disclaimer: We’ll be starting with the cheapest electric car first, and working our way up.
Is it an electric car or is it a quadricycle? © Credit to Renault
1. Renault Twizy: Cheapest Electric Car In The UK*
- Manufacturer: Renault
- Type: Quadricycle/Microcar
- UK Price: £11,995
Say hello to the most affordable electric car in the UK: the Renault Twizy.
This microcar (emphasis on ‘micro’) costs only £11,995, and is billed as one of the smallest cars to ever exist.
Parking should be a total breeze if you go with the Twizy, we’ll say that.
Unfortunately, this EV can only carry two passengers and is limited to 50mph tops. The range of the Renault Twizy is also pretty limited. And bouts of bad weather can limit its range even further.
We should also mention that you won’t receive the government led grant if you choose this EV. It’s technically a quadricycle, which, again, limits its viability.
It’s also the reason why we’ve put an asterisk next to its name above. You see, some don’t consider it a car.
We’ll let you decide what it is exactly.
The Renault Twizy isn’t bad as a light urban commuter. Still, that’s all it really can do. If you’re looking for a family transporter, then you might want to look at some of the other cheap electric cars below.
2. Smart EQ Fortwo: Cheapest Electric Car In The UK
- Manufacturer: Smart
- Type: Hatchback Microcar
- UK Price: £19,200
Those that don’t consider the Renault Twizy a real electric car will probably find themselves looking at this Smart car.
The Smart EQ Fortwo is cute, but it does the trick, capable of traveling up to 80 miles between charges.
It seats two total – in case the name wasn’t a clear hint. In other words, you might want to pack light if you’re thinking of going anywhere.
Like the Twizy, parking should be no issue at all for the Smart EQ Fortwo, given its small size and stature. If you’re looking for something with a little more space, be sure to keep your eyes peeled at the next cheap electric car in the list.
Smart cars are household names for a reason. And now you have the chance to own one of, if not, the cheapest electric car in the UK in the Smart EQ Fortwo. Try to stick to urban areas with this one.
The Smart Fourfor electric car adds additional doors and more © Credit to Smart
3. Smart EQ Forfour: One Of The Best Cheap Electric Cars
- Manufacturer: Smart
- Type: City Car
- UK Price: £19,795
Pay a little more and you’ll find your EV has a few extra doors!
The Smart EQ ForFour is very similar to the ForTwo, in design, only there is a lot more room to play with. Still, the 185-litre boot is still somewhat disappointing as the location of the electric motor does eat up most of the space within.
Expect to get around 78 miles between charges with the Smart EQ ForFour. Eagle-eyed readers will notice there’s a slight drop in range compared to the above alternative.
This is due to the extra weight inside as a four door type.
Cars like the Smart EQ ForFour won’t blow you away, but that was never its purpose. The goal of these Smart cars is to give urban commuters something affordable and sustainable. They passed.
4. Seat Mii Electric: Cheap Electric Cars, Take Note
- Manufacturer: Seat
- Type: City Car
- UK Price: £20,300
One of the best electric cars that don’t cost a fortune. We’re, of course talking about the Seat Mii Electric.
This EV was launched back in 2020, driving on a wave of momentum left by positive reviews across the board. It’s very similar to the Volkswagen E-Up! that we’ll be covering in a few short moments.
The latest Seat Mii Electric has the ability to cover 161 miles from a charge. It seats four too! There’s only one trim option, this includes 16-inch alloy wheels, rear parking sensors and ambient interior lighting to name but a few key features.
It’s no wonder the Seat Mii Electric is one of the highest selling cars on the second hand market.
This EV has no right to be so cheap given what we’ve just said. You might want to be snappy if you want to own the Seat Mii Electric. The popular brand announced that it would axe the production of the Seat Mii “by the end of 2021.”
Easily one of the most popular EVs in the UK, period © Credit to Fiat
5. Fiat 500: One Of The Most Popular Options In The UK
- Manufacturer: Fiat
- Type: City Car
- UK Price: £20,995
We couldn’t have a list talking about the cheapest electric cars in the UK without giving a nod to the Fiat 500, a car that’s been around the block a few times.
Some might say this is the most known city car, period. And who could really argue with that?
It started as a combustion type but Fiat has changed a lot over the years, now sitting pretty with an all-electric third-generation 500. A car that can go 115 miles without a charge!
There is a longer range option (adding an extra 80 or so miles to its range) but you’ll need to pay more for that one, and the goal here is to offer cheap electric cars, not add ons.
There’s only one Fiat 500. Need we say more?
6. Volkswagen e-UP!: The City Car With Style
- Manufacturer: Volkswagen
- Type: City Car
- UK Price: £21,055
The cheapest option coming out of the Volkswagen camp is its e-UP! city car, an urban specialist in every which way possible.
Electric range is one of the main reasons you should consider this cheap electric car. After all, an EV capable of travelling 159 miles total (WLTP) is worth checking out, in our book.
Better range is the product of a new lithium-ion battery pack (36.8kWh).
It’s easily one of the best looking cars on the small to medium sized market too. Seriously, take a good look at this one, you’ll see.
VW has been putting out small city cars for quite some time now – some of you might remember the Up from 2011 that bears a striking resemblance to this electric option.
Re-up with the e-UP! and you should have no troubles in getting places. Volkswagen’s smallest EV is one to be championed, given its distinctive looks and range capabilities. It’s one of the best cheap electric cars in the UK.
The MG5 is one of the best cheap electric cars in the UK © Credit to MG
7. MG5 EV Excite: For Family Outings And More
- Manufacturer: MG
- Type: Compact Car
- UK Price: £25,095
Yet another viable option in the cheap electric car lane, this time from renowned manufacturer MG.
The MG5 EV Excite hasn’t been around long – it launched in the UK back in 2020 and quickly became a hit amongst buyers. It’s the first electric car on our list here that doesn’t fall into that smaller category.
It’s one for the families.
This EV comes in multiple configurations depending on what you’re looking for. A long range version of the MG5 EV Excite (£26,495) will gift drivers with an additional 36 miles of range.
The base version we’re talking about (without the extra range) still gives you around 214 miles per charge to play with.
Inside is also where this EV shines. This affordable electric car has a 6-speaker audio system with 3D sound, not to mention sleek all-black seating.
Does the MG5 EV Excite excite in all the ways you should want it to? We think it does. If you’re a family-orientated person looking for an eco-friendly vehicle, then there is no better option right now than this EV from MG. Trust us.
8. Nissan Leaf: A Pioneer In Cheap Electric Driving
- Manufacturer: Nissan
- Type: Hatchback
- UK Price: £25,995
Nissan struck electric gold with the release of the original Leaf back in 2010. In 2021, this EV is still going strong amongst money-conscious drivers.
Today, you have one of two Leaf options to choose from. You have the standard Leaf and the Leaf+. With the Leaf+ you get more range (239 miles) courtesy of a 62KWh battery.
The standard Leaf can cover around 168 miles between charges, which is still just as impressive given its relatively low price point.
It’s easy to control, comfortable and has enough room inside for you and the entire family. What’s not to love?
The Nissan Leaf will go down in UK EV history regardless of where it goes in the next few years. Not a lot of affordable electric cars have a reputation that proceeds it, but the Leaf does, and with good reason.
Is there anything more British than a MINI? We’ll wait © Credit to MINI
9. MINI Electric: The Affordable UK Icon
- Manufacturer: MINI
- Type: MINI Hatchback
- UK Price: £26,000
What can we really say about MINI and its line of vehicles that you should know already? We could say that it has a knack for crafting some of the finest vehicles known to man.
We could also say its MINI Electric is one of the cheapest electric cars in the UK, sitting around the £26,000 mark (after deductions, remember).
The MINI Electric comes with only one power option (32.6kWH) with a single electric motor. This allows the vehicle to go from 0 to 62mph in around 7.3 seconds total which isn’t half bad.
Range-wise, buyers should expect to get around 145 miles out of each charge.
All you need to ask yourself now is: what colour will you go for?
We’re a sucker for a dark green.
MINI’s electric range is expected to really pick up in the next few years. So expect certain electric models to dip in price when they appear. Still, the price you pay now for this current MINI Electric is pretty reasonable when you stop and think about it.
10. Mazda MX-30: The Cost Effective Electric SUV
- Manufacturer: Mazda
- Type: Small SUV
- UK Price: £26,045
Last, but by no means least, we have the Mazda MX-30, a small-size electric SUV that is described as “a reinvention of the electric car for the everyday.”
Its off-kilter design is one of the first things you’ll spot. It has a very sporty feel despite being an SUV which is one of its major appeals.
Range is set to 124 miles with every charge, and the top speed at 87mph. Some might consider this somewhat of a letdown, considering its an electric SUV from a brand the size of Mazda.
Then again, this is Mazda’s first electric vehicle. There’s certainly some room for improvement here. Not bad for a first outing though!
Cheap electric cars like the Mazda MX-30 are great value for money. Sure, its range is a tad limited, but how many of you will travel over 124 miles on trips? There are charging options everywhere these days. Range anxiety shouldn’t be an issue.
Cheapest Electric Car UK: Best EVs On A Low Budget
The EVs you’ve just seen aren’t the fastest, or have endless amounts of space, but they are affordable, which is arguably way more important.
At least, it is to money-conscious buyers looking to invest in a new ride. And who said you had to buy one? Leasing is another option.
One way you can stay ahead of the curve, saving money in the process, is to keep tabs on the latest electric car deals. New electric cars arrive every month it seems, which pushes older models to the back of the line, so to speak.
This encourages sellers to drop the price of these EVs. Price comparison sites like CarWow and WhatCar? are great at cutting through the nonsense, showcasing the best electric car deals right then and there.
So, which is your favourite from the list above?
We’re leaning heavily on the MINI Electric. Then again, there’s something about the Seat Mii Electric that just keeps pulling us back in!
Cheap Electric Cars FAQs
What is the cheapest electric car in the UK to buy?
The Smart EQ Fortwo is the cheapest electric car in the UK, costing £19,200. Some consider the Renault Twizy as the cheapest EV available, but it’s technically a quadricycle. Moreover, this EV doesn’t apply to the governments plug-in-grant.
Will the price of electric cars come down?
Yes, the cost of every electric car you see in the current market will come down eventually as new vehicles enter the picture. Look at the Nissan Leaf for the perfect example, a vehicle that was priced pretty high when released, and is now in a post all about cheap electric cars. Go figure.
Where can I find the best electric car deals in the UK?
Dedicated price comparison websites will be your friend here if you’re on the look out for an affordable EV. A simple online search will give you a pretty good idea at the current deals too. Or if a manufacturer has decided to alter the price of certain vehicles. We’ve covered the changing price in Tesla vehicles in the past.