What’s eligible: Any 2022 model year battery electric vehicle, regardless of when it was introduced or last updated.
Criteria: In addition to overall excellence, we pay special attention to things that many EVs stumble over, like ride quality and charging speed.
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Winner: 2022 Tesla Model Y
The Best Electric Vehicle award comes at a time when mass-market electric vehicle availability is closer to a tipping point than ever. Widespread adoption is still some way off because challenges limiting accessibility like affordability, truly fast public charging, a range education, and more haven’t been resolved, but new electric vehicles are popping up left and right, including several late additions that weren’t up for voting this year (Hyundai Ioniq 5, Kia EV6, Lucid Air, and Rivian R1T among them). Dozens more models are waiting in the wings.
Of those available, we chose the Tesla Model Y as our best electric vehicle of 2022. The Model Y excels as an easy-to-use electric vehicle in addition to being a roomy SUV with up to 3,500 pounds of towing capacity. It’s one of the most effective at alleviating range anxiety with additional range, an EPA of 326 miles for the long-range all-wheel-drive version, along with useful efficiency information to inform drivers on how to maximize range. remaining. Tesla’s Supercharger DC fast charger network is also larger and has been more reliable (and faster and more reliable) than others in our experience.
When charging, Model Y’s efficiency translates to more range miles at a given power than many electric vehicles, and Model Y can fine-tune charging to work with a variety of household electrical circuits. It comes standard with a 120- and 240-volt mobile charger for respectable charging speeds, and Tesla adds a J1772 adapter to pair its proprietary connector with non-Tesla chargers.
Driving the Model Y is perhaps more polarizing: It lacks a conventional dashboard and relies on a 15-inch touchscreen center stack for everything, including the speedometer. And its handling is more like a sports car, but so are its dynamics: It’s fun to drive, so it’s worth it. Even faster acceleration can be unlocked with the push of a button (and it costs $2,000), as the Model Y can change significantly through over-the-air updates.
We praised some new EVs for matching what Tesla has been doing for years and selling in all 50 states, a requirement we declined for this new EV. Even if some states don’t allow direct-to-consumer sales, that doesn’t stop Tesla buyers, and we don’t think it will stop similar electric vehicle brands, from being eligible for this award in years to come. future Tesla sold as many Model Ys as Subaru Foresters in the first nine months of 2021 (130,000 vehicles), ushering in electric vehicle adoption faster than any other model. Most newer EVs have the technical capability for over-the-air updates and many hotfixes on the fly, but we haven’t yet seen anything like Tesla’s history of using the capability to improve and develop products. Truth be told, they’re just catching up with Tesla. It’s one more reason Model Y is Best EV of 2022.
|2022 Ford Mustang Mach-E: photo by Christian Lantry
2022 Ford Mustang Mach-E: Nominee
The Ford Mustang Mach-E draws inspiration from one of the most iconic nameplates in automotive history to infuse a sense of excitement into the EV, even if it’s mostly superficial, apart from the new GT versions. As a five-seat, four-door SUV with ample occupant and cargo space, it sits at the heart of the burgeoning EV SUV market and is available in multiple prices, ranges, and power configurations.
The Mach-E’s EPA-estimated 305-mile maximum range is impressive, though the lower standard range of 211 miles is on the lower side compared to current electric vehicles. GT versions with 480 horsepower and all-wheel drive can accelerate the Mach-E to 60 mph in as little as 3.5 seconds, while non-GTs last between 4.8 and 6.1 seconds, according to Ford. However, all versions suffer from an odd ride quality, where they sway down the road.
Inside, Ford’s large 15.5-inch touchscreen is the command center that houses most of the controls and works relatively well, and unlike the Tesla Model Y, there’s an instrument cluster in front of the driver that displays the speedometer and other vital elements. The interior styling of the Mach-E is simple and the quality is good enough that it feels appropriate in a price range from $45,000 to $66,000, including destination fee.
Ford expects 80% of Mach-E’s to be equipped with its BlueCruise system that allows drivers to go hands-free on specific stretches of road when the car and driver meet all criteria, a big difference from the driver. Tesla automatic that is technically practical.
|2022 Volvo XC40 Recharge Twin: photo by Christian Lantry
2022 Volvo XC40 Recharge Twin: Nominee
When the original gasoline-only Volvo XC40 debuted for the 2019 model year, it was an instant favorite and nominated for our Best of 2019 award thanks to its space efficiency, boldness, and thoughtful features like an available integrated trash can in the console. core storage. Replacing an overly powerful twin-motor electric powertrain has only strengthened our attachment to Volvo’s small SUV.
The XC40 Recharge Twin is a modestly quick subcompact SUV that accelerates from 0 to 60 mph in 4.7 seconds, according to Volvo, thanks to 402 hp from a 78 kWh battery and two motors, one in the front and one in the rear. rear for everyone. -wheel drive. The EPA-rated range isn’t the strongest at 223 miles, and it’s also not very efficient (equivalent to 85 mpg versus the Model Y’s 125 mpg-e, meaning it’ll use more battery to travel the same distance and it takes longer recover miles when charged), but the XC40 does something many other electric vehicles don’t: it drives well. Both the Mach-E and Model Y have ride quality quirks, tuned toward the firm side, while the XC40’s ride quality is inoffensive and comfortable.
The XC40 is the only nominee that wasn’t designed to be solely an EV, it has a gas-only version, and the transformation from gas to EV has retained much of the XC40 we’ve loved from the start. Overall cargo volume hasn’t changed, and there’s even a touch more with a front trunk where the engine used to live.