Best electric SUVs to buy in 2023

Published: 26 November 2023

► The best electric SUVs on sale today
► Boxy 4x4s and sleek coupe-SUVs galore
► Find out which best fits your EV needs

If you’re looking for the best electric car to suit your requirements, chances are you’ll have an electric SUV on your shortlist. Almost every manufacturer has one in their line-ups these days, which means there’s plenty of choice. Too many choices can be overwhelming, though – so we’ve compiled this list of the best electric SUVs to help you sort the wheat from the chaff. If you don’t need so much space we have a list of small electric cars, too.

Electric SUVs make a lot of sense, at least from an engineering perspective. Their taller ride heights and larger bodies make them well-suited to electrification, as they have enough spare room in their platforms to accommodate a large battery pack and a couple of electric motors without impacting passenger space. Indeed, most battery-powered SUVs are more practical than their petrol-powered equivalents because electric motors are (generally) much smaller than petrol and diesel engines.

The best electric SUVs at a glance:

  • Best electric SUV to suit almost everyone’s requirements (Editor’s pick): Kia EV6 – Find out more
  • Best value and ample electric range for daily life: MG ZS EV – Find out more
  • Best for luxury and power: BMW iX  – Find out more

If you’re still shackled to the idea of owning a zero-emission crossover, scroll down for our list of the top 10 electric SUVs on sale now. Our round-up covers a broad spectrum of vehicles, ranging from affordable family runabouts to budget-busting, warp-speed-capable battle cruisers.

The best electric SUVs on sale in the UK in 2023

Kia EV6

Best electric SUVs - Kia EV6, red, front view

Best electric SUV to suit almost everyone’s requirements (Editor’s pick)

Pros: Stunning performance, clever technology, rapid charge times
Cons: Firm ride and a lack of physical interior controls (but not much else)

The Kia EV6 is the most well-rounded electric SUV on sale today. Need something that’s practical? It has a 490-litre boot and enough space inside for four adults. Want an EV with a long-range? Buy an EV6 with a 77.4kWh battery pack, and you’ll be able to drive for around 300 miles before needing to recharge. Fancy something quick? The range-topping EV6 GT produces 572bhp and will sprint from 0–62mph in a supercar-baiting 3.5 seconds.

It even handles well. Obviously, it’s heavier than a petrol-powered SUV, but it hides its bulk rather well. The battery pack adds the most amount of weight, but most of it is concentrated low down in the chassis. The EV6’s suspension also does a great job of culling body roll, which means it stays flat in the corners. We like its steering system, too – it’s very direct and surprisingly communicative for an electric SUV, which gives you the confidence to exploit its performance on a windy road.

Read our full Kia EV6 review

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Best for luxury and power – not so great if you value looks

Pros: Staggering acceleration, sumptuous interior, great build quality
Cons: Hideously cumbersome dynamics and, well, hideous to look at from the outside

The BMW iX is a technological tour de force. It was somewhat of a pet project, which means it was designed with the sorts of manufacturing methods normally reserved for supercars. So, it has an exotic carbon fibre body, an enormous 111.5kWh battery pack and up to 610bhp. In short, if you go for the range-topping M60 variant, you’ll have a terrifically capable electric SUV that’s ferociously quick and incredibly long-legged.

The problem? Well, it isn’t the most accessible electric SUV on the market. Prices start from around £70,000, but if you want the M60, you’ll spend more than £120,000. It’s almost worth it for the entertainment value alone, though, because driving an iX is utterly incongruous. It’s a 2.5-tonne SUV that takes corners like a sports car and which accelerates like it’s being propelled by afterburners.

Read our full BMW iX electric SUV review


Skoda Enyaq

Best electric SUVs - Skoda Enyaq, front view, red, driving

Best family SUV that just happens to be electric

Pros: Spacious cabin, impressive range, loads of clever add-ons
Cons: Not that engaging to drive, not that quick

Skoda has a history of building sensible cars, and the electric SUV market has been a better place since the firm decided to participate in it. Cars like the Kia EV6 and BMW iX are very striking, but they compromise on space and price for their performance. The Enyaq adopts a more moderate approach, focusing on practicality rather than headline-grabbing performance figures – and it’s all the better for it. It’s a great family car with loads of passenger space and a staggering 640-litre boot.

A word to wise, though – don’t be sucked in by the promises of the quickest vRS variant because it isn’t any faster than the middling 80x variant in the real world. The smart choice is to stick with the 201bhp single-motor 80 model and spend your money on the biggest 77kWh battery. That way, you’ll have just enough performance to have fun and a range of more than 300 miles.

Read our full Skoda Enyaq review

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Best electric SUVs - BMW iX3, white, front view, driving over bridge

Best mid-sized electric SUV for keen drivers

Pros: Great driving dynamics, understated looks, good range
Cons: Costly options based on an ICE car

The iX3 is an easy car to get along with because it’s so familiar. It’s based on the same platform as the BMW X3 (which we love) – and it shares that car’s interior equipment and driving dynamics. Granted, it carries a little more weight than the petrol SUV due to its battery pack, but the switch to EV power hasn’t managed to completely dull the standard car’s razor-sharp road holding. Importantly, it retains the standard X3’s stellar steering feel, and its brakes are far more positive than its EV rivals.

Its modest 282bhp output means it isn’t face-alteringly fast – 0–62mph takes 6.8 seconds, whereas cars like the Tesla Model Y and BMW iX and can dispatch the same sprint in less than four seconds. Its 80kWh battery also delivers a rather meagre 285 miles of range, which pales in comparison to the 328 miles offered by the longest-range Kia EV6 (which has a similarly sized battery). But if you want your electric SUV to handle properly, this might be your best bet.

Read our full BMW iX3 review

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Best electric SUVs - MG ZS EV, blue, front view, driving round corner

Best value and ample electric range for daily life

Pros: Prices start from £30,000, unassuming looks, you get a seven-year warranty!
Cons: Material quality is a bit naff, and it isn’t that fun to drive

Electric cars are quite expensive. Their batteries contain a lot of rare earth materials, which are quite expensive to dig up and refine. As such, manufacturers jack up the price of the EVs to turn a healthy enough profit. Not MG, though – the ZS EV is an affordable electric SUV for the average driver. It has a modest amount of equipment, a reasonable range of 273 miles and enough space to handle whatever family life throws at it. Oh, yeah, and prices start from a shade over £30,000.

Naturally, the ZS EV sacrifices a lot to maintain that low price. Its performance, handling capability and interior quality aren’t anywhere as good as the Kia EV6 or Skoda Enyaq. But surprisingly, it isn’t exactly awful, either. The ZS EV’s chassis has been tuned for comfort – and it does a good job of filtering out potholes around town. It’s a little less refined on the motorway, but for the money, there isn’t much on sale at the minute that can match it.

Read our full MG ZS EV review


Tesla Model Y

Best electric SUVs - Tesla Model Y, white, front view, driving round corner

Best electric SUV for technophiles

Pros: Great performance, entertaining infotainment, pleasant interior
Cons: Disconnected steering, some build quality issues

The Model Y isn’t the most revolutionary vehicle in Tesla’s line-up (it’s basically a jacked-up version of the Model 3), but that doesn’t sully its merits. The most basic version of the car has a maximum range of 283 miles, while the leggiest Long Range variant can cover up to 331 miles. There’s even a fast one called the Performance, which can hit 155mph and sprint from 0–62mph in 3.7 seconds.

It isn’t the best EV to drive by a long shot. It’s quite big, and the steering system feels very disconnected from the front wheels, which makes it hard to find the confidence to attack a B-road. Once you’re on a straight stretch of road, though, it’s very entertaining to mat the accelerator and watch the speedometer scroll like tumblers on a fruit machine. It’s also very spacious, and you get access to Tesla’s Supercharger network, which is comfortably the best in the UK.

Read our full Tesla Model Y review

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Audi Q4 e-tron

Best electric SUVs - Audi Q4 e-tron front three quarter driving

Best for great electric underpinnings and an upmarket badge

Pros: Classy interior, excellent real-world range, comfortable ride
Cons: Cheaper rivals offer more standard kit, strong in-house competition

Don’t tell anyone, but the Audi Q4 e-tron is based on the same MEB platform as the Skoda Enyaq. It has a slightly nicer badge and a better interior, but the fundamentals of the two cars are essentially the same. That isn’t such a bad thing, though – and Audi has managed to tune the platform to make it corner better than the Skoda. The Q4’s steering is sharper, its damping more controlled, and the all-wheel quattro version features torque vectoring, which makes it more chuckable through chicanes.

In terms of outright speed, even the top-spec 50 quattro model (with its 295bhp) feels rather slow in comparison to the Tesla Model Y Performance. However, the car’s power feels very much in tune with the Q4’s chassis – and it never feels frightening to exploit its performance on a good road. Try the same trick with the BMW iX, and you’ll either slow back down again or finish your day upside down in a ditch.

Read our full Audi Q4 Sportback e-Tron review

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Mercedes-Benz EQB

Best electric SUVs - Mercedes EQB, front view, bronze, driving

Best for carrying people in luxury

Pros: High-quality interior, good-looking exterior, stacks of space, seven seats
Cons: Maximum range is lacking, cramped third row

Yes, we know the Mercedes EQB looks rather conventional alongside the future-gazing Kia EV6 and BMW iX. Hear us out, though – it’s a clever bit of kit that demands your attention. For starters, Merc has managed to squeeze seven seats into a car with the same footprint as a Ford Kuga. Granted, the rearmost seats are a little small, but the extra flexibility comes in very handy.

The EQB is also incredibly comfortable. Its suspension has been set up to make the UK’s pockmarked road network feel like a billiard table. Even on 20-inch alloy wheels, it can iron everything short of a mortar crater. It even comes with four-wheel drive as standard, which makes it feel secure, even in torrential rain. However, the two electric motors chew through battery capacity – and it only has a maximum range of 260 miles. Still, if all you need is a comfortable car to take the kids to school and commute to work, it could be everything you’re looking for.

Read our full Mercedes-Benz EQB review

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Genesis GV60

Best electric SUVs - Genesis GV60, driving, front view

Best for E-GMP tech in a more unusual project

Pros: Affordable luxury, 300-mile-plus range, loads of technology
Cons: Interior is a little tacky, handling isn’t that precise

Genesis is the new kid on the block. The company is to Hyundai what Lexus is to Toyota – and the GV60 is the brand’s first go at a dedicated electric car. It’s a good one, too. That swoopy bodywork hides the same platform as the excellent Kia EV6, which means you get strong performance across the line-up and a maximum range of 321 miles. Thanks to its 800V electrical system, charge speeds are also lightning-fast. Find a 350kW charger, and it’ll surge from 10–80% in 18 minutes.

It isn’t perfect, though. It might be based on the same underpinnings as the EV6, but Genesis has slackened off its suspension to help it roll over lumps like a luxury motor. That change has blunted the car’s handling, though – on a windy road, the Kia will show it a clean pair of heels. The GV60’s cabin isn’t the most sophisticated, either. The materials all feel very premium, but the optional side-view cameras are a little crude, and the built-in sat-nav is frustratingly slow.

Read our full Genesis GV60 review

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BYD Atto 3

Best electric SUVs - BYD Atto 3 front three quarter driving

Best for great value from a new challenger

Pros: Comfortable cabin, plush ride, a revolving infotainment screen!
Cons: Rear headroom is a little tight, rivals are more fun to drive

BYD is a recent addition to the UK’s electric car scene. The firm is China’s biggest car manufacturer, but not content with dominating its home market, it decided to expand westwards with this – the Atto 3. It’s a great first effort, too. You get a 60.5kWh battery pack, a maximum range of 260 miles and a 201bhp electric motor delivering a 0–62mph time of 7.3 seconds. It isn’t even that bad to drive, although it lacks some of the polish of its European rivals.

The Atto 3’s biggest selling point is its cabin because it’s unlike any other car on sale today. The door cards have been styled to look like guitars, the gear selector apes the design of a throttle lever on a commercial airliner and the infotainment system can revolve. Yes, you can pick whether you want it in portrait or landscape mode and a motor mounted on the back of the screen with swivel it to your desired orientation. That’s hours of fun right there.

Read our full BYD Atto 3 review

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What is the best electric SUV for a family?

Well, that depends on your family. A small family would probably be served well by BYD Atto 3, while a large family would better appreciate the flexibility of the Mercedes EQB. Overall, though, we think the best electric family SUV on sale is the Skoda Enyaq. It’s good value for money, it has loads of space inside, and it has a long enough electric range for almost any family outing.

What is the largest electric SUV?

That title is currently awarded to the gargantuan Cadillac Escalade IQ, but at this rate of progress, another manufacturer could soon swoop in and steal the crown. Why are we so confident? Well, it’s already happened. A few short months ago, the biggest SUV on sale was the enormous 4.5-tonne GMC Hummer EV – and when that was launched, all the CAR magazine staff nodded their heads in agreement that there was no way a brand could build a bigger electric SUV. How wrong we were.

What is the most reliable SUV EV?

If we’re honest, you can’t really go wrong with any electric SUV. They’re all incredibly simple mechanically, as their powertrains only feature a few moving parts. What lets them down is their firmware and the chemistry in their battery packs. If you’re concerned about reliability, pick an electric SUV from a brand with a good track record. Nissan’s electric cars have a good reputation for reliability, as do Kia’s. The Jaguar I-Pace is a good example of an unreliable electric car. You can read about some of the problems owners have experienced on our sister site, Parkers, by checking out the owners’ reviews.

Which EV SUV has the most room?

The Mercedes EQS SUV is the most spacious electric SUV on sale in the UK today. It measures 5125mm long, and it has a wheelbase of 3210mm, which translates into copious amounts of legroom for its passengers and 645 litres of boot space. It also comes with seven seats as standard – but if you fold all the seats flat, you’ll have a maximum storage volume of more than 2,000 litres.

What is the fastest full electric SUV?

This is another ever-changing statistic as electric vehicle manufacturers are constantly trying to outgun each other. Currently, though, the fastest electric on sale is the Tesla Model X Plaid. It features a tri-motor electric powertrain with 1006bhp, which Tesla says is enough to shunt the 2.5-tonne SUV from 0–62mph in 2.6 seconds. For context, that’s 2.1 seconds quicker than a Volkswagen Golf R.

Luke Wilkinson is a Senior Staff Writer for the Bauer Automotive Hub. He writes news, reviews, features and best of pages for both CAR magazine and our sister site, Parkers.

By Luke Wilkinson

Deputy Editor of Parkers. Unhealthy obsession with classic Minis and old Alfas. Impenetrable Cumbrian accent