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The 10 most popular electric cars of 2021 and how long it takes to charge them

February 7, 2022 | Wesley van Barlingen and Callum Biggins

Electric mobility is no longer in its early stages. Over the past decade, we’ve seen an explosion of electric vehicles (EVs) on the roads, and recently, McKinsey & Company announced that the tipping point in passenger EV adoption had already occurred.

With all this growth, EVs are becoming more and more attractive to all kinds of drivers—not just early adopters. Today, nearly half of all consumers (45 percent) surveyed in our research said that they are considering buying an EV.

With all this interest, one of the most common questions asked is how long it takes to charge an electric car. The answer to that question depends on multiple factors, but you’re probably not looking for the textbook explanation. So, instead, we have gathered information on some of the most popular EVs of 2021, and how long it takes to charge them.

1. Tesla Model 3

A Tesla Model 3 driving on a country road.

The Tesla Model 3 is one of the most attractive EVs on the market today, and has become the first EV to top monthly sales of new cars in the UK. The Model 3 comes with a variety of options, such as a standard range rear-wheel drive, dual-motor all-wheel drive, and a long-range battery and performance option with 20” Überturbine wheels, performance brakes, and lowered suspension. 

Tesla Model 3 performance

With each option of the Model 3 comes different battery sizes and ranges: 

  1. Rear-Wheel Drive: has a 50 kWh battery and a range of 305 miles. 
  2. Performance: has a 75 kWh battery and a range of 340 miles.
  3. Long Range: has a 75 kWh battery and a range of 374 miles. 

Tesla Model 3 price 

As the cheapest Tesla on the road at present, the starting price of a Tesla Model 3 ranges between £42,990 and £59,990* depending on which version of the vehicle you chose.  

*The cost of a Tesla Model 3 can vary depending on your location or dealership. At the time of writing this article, we took Tesla’s UK catalogue price.

How long does it take to charge a Tesla Model 3?

Charging Level Charging Output

Charging Times*
Model 3
Rear-Wheel Drive
(50 kWh)

Charging Times*
Model 3
Performance & Long Range
(75 kWh)
Level 1 (AC) 2.3 kW 22h30m 31h20m
Level 2 (AC) 7.4 kW 7h15m 10h50m
Level 3 (DC) 50 kW 45 min 1h10m
Level 3 (DC) 240 kW 10 min 15 min

*These numbers provide a calculated estimation of charging times – from 0 to 100 percent (AC) and 20 to 80 (DC) percent state of charge (SOC) – and do not reflect actual charging times or real-life situations. For a more accurate representation of (or more information on) actual charging times, please refer to the original manufacturer or certified dealerships. The results are based on an equation that uses the standard battery size and average performance of charging stations as metrics and are rounded up for readability.

2. Tesla Model Y

A Tesla Model Y parked in a rocky landscape.

Whereas the Model 3 is Tesla’s version of a traditional four-door sedan, the Model Y steps more into the luxury SUV market. Unveiled in 2019, this fully electric, mid-size SUV started appearing on the roads in 2020. The Model Y shares a lot of the technology from the Model 3, however, the Model Y is slightly larger, can be optionally equipped as a seven-seater, and is more spacious too.

Tesla Model Y performance

There are two different versions of the Tesla Model Y available on the market. 

  1. Long Range: has a 75 kWh battery and a range of 331 miles.
  2. Performance: has a 75 kWh battery and a range of 319 miles.

Tesla Model Y price

The starting price for a Tesla Model Y ranges between £54,990 and £64,990* depending on which version of the vehicle you choose. 

*The cost of a Tesla Model Y can vary depending on your location or dealership. At the time of writing this article, we took Tesla’s brochure price.

How long does it take to charge a Tesla Model Y?

Charging Level Charging Output

Charging Times*

Model Y Performance &
Long Range

(75 kWh)

Level 1 (AC) 2.3 kW 31h20m
Level 2 (AC) 7.4 kW 10h50m
Level 3 (DC) 50 kW 1h10m
Level 3 (DC) 240 kW 15 min

*These numbers provide a calculated estimation of charging times – from 0 to 100 percent (AC) and 20 to 80 (DC) percent state of charge (SOC) – and do not reflect actual charging times or real-life situations. For a more accurate representation of (or more information on) actual charging times, please refer to the original manufacturer or certified dealerships. The results are based on an equation that uses the standard battery size and average performance of charging stations as metrics and are rounded up for readability.

3. Volkswagen ID.4

A white Volkswagen ID.4 GTX parked in a seemingly Mediterranean area.

The ID.4 was launched to take on the world’s largest market segment, the compact SUV class, in what the Volkswagen Group calls their electric offensive. Going head to head with the Model Y, the ID.4 wants to provide an affordable alternative which can drive forward electric mobility in larger markets. And it’s working: the fully electric ID.4 prevailed over the strong international competition World Car Awards to win “World Car of the Year 2021”.

Volkswagen ID.4 performance

The Volkswagen ID.4 comes in six different style variants and four different battery variants:

  1. ID.4 Pure: with a 52 kWh battery and a range of up to 213 miles.  
  2. ID.4 Pure Performance: with a 52 kWh battery and a range up to 213 miles. 
  3. ID.4 Pro: with a 77 kWh battery and a range up to 318 miles.
  4. ID.4 Pro Performance: with a 77 kWh battery and a range up to 320 miles.

Volkswagen ID.4 price

The starting price for a Volkswagen ID.4 ranges between £34,995 and £56,380* depending on which style and battery variant you choose. 

*The cost of a Volkswagen ID.4 can vary depending on your location or dealership. At the time of writing this article, we took Volkswagen’s Brochure price.

How long does it take to charge a Volkswagen ID.4?

Charging Level Charging Output

Charging Times*

ID.4 Pure

(52 kWh)

Charging Times*

ID.4 Pro

(77 kWh)

Level 1 (AC) 2.3 kW 23h30m 35h30m
Level 2 (AC) 7.4 kW 7h20m 11h
Level 3 (DC) 50 kW 40 min 60 min
Level 3 (DC) 125 kW N/A 25 min
Level 3 (DC) 220 kW N/A N/A

*These numbers provide a calculated estimation of charging times – from 0 to 100 percent (AC) and 20 to 80 (DC) percent state of charge (SOC) – and do not reflect actual charging times or real-life situations. For a more accurate representation of (or more information on) actual charging times, please refer to the original manufacturer or certified dealerships. The results are based on an equation that uses the standard battery size and average performance of charging stations as metrics and are rounded up for readability.

4. Renault Zoe

A baby blue Renault Zoe parked outside in front of the showroom.

The Renault Zoe E-Tech is one of the most popular EVs in Europe, selling nearly 100,000 units in 2020. And it’s no surprise, with a rather long range for a small EV—the E-Tech can go 239 miles on a single charge—the Zoe has the best range in its class. Due to this fact, Zoe has won the title of Western Europe's best-selling electric car in 2020.

Renault Zoe performance

The Renault Zoe E-Tech comes in three different versions, including the Iconic, the S Edition, and the GT Line +. With this choice, there are only two options in terms of electric motors; the smaller R110 or the larger R135 motor. 

However, these models do not have different specs in terms of battery capacity or range, which sits at 52 kWh and 239 respectively. All versions of the Zoe E-Tech have a fast charging capacity of 50 kWh.

Renault Zoe price

The starting price for a Renault Zoe ranges between £27,595 and £30,495* depending on which version of the vehicle you choose.

*The cost of a Renault Zoe can vary depending on your location or dealership. At the time of writing this article, we took Renault’s catalogue price.

How long does it take to charge a Renault Zoe?

Charging Level Charging Output

Charging Times*

Renault Zoe

(52 kWh)

Level 1 (AC) 2.3 kW 34h30m
Level 2 (AC) 7.4 kW 9h25m
Level 3 (DC) 50 kW 70 min
Level 3 (DC) 240 kW N/A

*These numbers provide a calculated estimation of charging times – from 0 to 100 percent (AC) and 20 to 80 (DC) percent state of charge (SOC) – and do not reflect actual charging times or real-life situations. For a more accurate representation of (or more information on) actual charging times, please refer to the original manufacturer or certified dealerships. The results are based on charging times specified in Renault Zoe’s brochure (in Dutch) where possible and alternatively, they are based on an equation that uses the standard battery size and average performance of charging stations as metrics and are rounded up for readability.

5. Nissan LEAF

A close-up image steering wheel with the Nissan Logo.

The all-electric Nissan LEAF was the world’s first mass-market EV and helped pave the way for EV adoption around the globe. The Nissan LEAF has been around since 2010 in Japan and has sold over 500,000 vehicles since the model was first introduced, making it one of the most common EVs on the roads. In fact, the compact five-door LEAF was, until 2019, the highest selling EV of all-time, passed by the Tesla Model 3.

Nissan LEAF performance

Today, the Nissan LEAF comes in two different battery variants: 

  • LEAF: with a 40 kWh battery capacity and a range of 168 miles.
  • LEAF e+: with a 62 kWh battery and a range of 239 miles.

Nissan LEAF price

The starting price for a Nissan LEAF ranges between £26,995 and £34,945* depending on which version of the vehicle you choose.

*The cost of a Nissan Leaf can vary depending on your location or dealership. At the time of writing this article, we took Nissan’s catalogue price.

How long does it take to charge a Nissan Leaf?

Charging Level Charging Output

Charging Times*

LEAF

(40 kWh)

Charging Times*

LEAF e+

(62 kWh)

Level 1 (AC) 2.3 kW 18h10m 27h45m
Level 2 (AC) 7.4 kW 5h40m 8h40m
Level 3 (DC) 50 kW 30 min 50 min
Level 3 (DC) 50-240 kW N/A N/A

*These numbers provide a calculated estimation of charging times – from 0 to 100 percent (AC) and 20 to 80 (DC) percent state of charge (SOC) – and do not reflect actual charging times or real-life situations. For a more accurate representation of (or more information on) actual charging times, please refer to the original manufacturer or certified dealerships. The results are based on an equation that uses the standard battery size and average performance of charging stations as metrics and are rounded up for readability.

6. Hyundai KONA Electric 

A Hyundai Kona parked in a barren area during sunset.

With the KONA Electric, Hyundai became the first carmaker to merge two industry trends: a fully-electric drivetrain and a subcompact SUV body style. The Hyundai KONA Electric is a compact crossover and a new breed of SUV designed to take on the city. With the size and manoeuvrability of a city passenger vehicle, and the height and perspective of an SUV, the KONA Electric has become one of the most popular EVs in Europe. Since its introduction to the market in 2018, more than 142,000 KONA Electrics have been sold worldwide, including more than 100,000 units in Europe.

Hyundai KONA Electric performance

The Hyundai KONA Electric has many variations, but only two different battery size variations: 39 kWh with a range of 180 miles and a larger 64 kWh battery with a range of 300 miles.

Hyundai KONA Electric price

The starting price for a Hyundai KONA Electric ranges between £29,811 and £36,561* depending on which version of the vehicle you choose. 

*The cost of a Hyundai KONA Electric can vary depending on your location or dealership. At the time of writing this article, we took Hyundai’s catalogue price.

How long does it take to charge a Hyundai Kona?

Charging Level Charging Output

Charging Times*

KONA

(39 kWh)

Charging Times*

KONA

(64 kWh)

Level 1 (AC) 2.3 kW 17h45m 29h45m
Level 2 (AC) 7.4 kW 5h30m 9h15m
Level 3 (DC) 50 kW 50 min 65 min
Level 3 (DC) 100 kW 25 min 50 min
Level 3 (DC) 100-240 kW N/A N/A

*These numbers provide a calculated estimation of charging times – from 0 to 100 percent (AC) and 20 to 80 (DC) percent state of charge (SOC) – and do not reflect actual charging times or real-life situations. For a more accurate representation of (or more information on) actual charging times, please refer to the original manufacturer or certified dealerships. The results are based on an equation that uses the standard battery size and average performance of charging stations as metrics and are rounded up for readability.

7. Audi e-tron

A Cherry-red Audi e-tron parked in front of an industrial wall.

The 2021 Audi e-tron SUV family was one of the most attractive in the mid-to-upper price points in the SUV range in 2021. The fully electric Audi models offer refined SUV designs, with everyday utility and distinctive road presence. The Audi e-tron and the e-tron Sportback were the first and second fully electric vehicles in the Audi lineup, creating a stepping stone for the brands commitment to 30 percent of the model lineup being fully or partially electrified by 2025.

Audi e-tron Performance

The Audi e-tron comes in many shapes and sizes—from the standard Edition to Sportback Edition, to the S Edition—each with their own dimensions and features. However, each model has two options for the battery size.

  1. Audi e-tron 50 quattro: has a battery size of 71 kWh and a range up to 203 miles.
  2. Audi e-tron 55 quattro: has a battery size of 95 kWh and a range up to 261 miles.
  •  

Audi e-tron price

The starting price for an Audi e-tron ranges between £62,025 and £84,025* depending on which version of the vehicle you choose.

*The cost of an Audi e-tron can vary depending on your location or dealership. At the time of writing this article, we took Audi’s catalogue price.

How long does it take to charge an Audi e-tron?

Charging Level Charging Output

Charging Times*

50 Quattro

(71 kWh)

Charging Times*

55 Quattro

(95 kWh)

Level 1 (AC) 2.3 kW 33h00m 44h00m
Level 2 (AC) 7.4 kW 10h15m 13h45m
Level 3 (DC) 50 kW 55 min 1h15m
Level 3 (DC) 120 kW 25 min 30 min
Level 3 (DC) 150 kW N/A 25 min

*These numbers provide a calculated estimation of charging times – from 0 to 100 percent (AC) and 20 to 80 (DC) percent state of charge (SOC) – and do not reflect actual charging times or real-life situations. For a more accurate representation of (or more information on) actual charging times, please refer to the original manufacturer or certified dealerships. The results are based on an equation that uses the standard battery size and average performance of charging stations as metrics and are rounded up for readability.

8. Kia e-Niro 

A close-up image of an electric vehicle with the Kia logo.

The e-Niro, Kia’s first fully-electric crossover utility vehicle, was unveiled at the 2018 Paris Motor Show and in the few years since, it’s become an incredibly popular option for EV drivers—with over 200,000 units sold globally since 2016 and 65,000 of those were across Europe.

Kia e-Niro performance

The Kia e-Niro comes with two different battery sizes: 39.2 kWh battery with a range of 180 miles, and 64 kWh battery with a range of 282 miles. The e-Niro comes with an 11 kW on-bored charger for AC charging and has a fast charging capacity of around 77 kW.

Kia e-Niro price

The price for the Kia e-Niro ranges between £32,895 and £39,695* depending on which version of the vehicle you choose.

*The cost of a Kia e-Niro can vary depending on your location or dealership. At the time of writing this article, we took Kia’s catalogue price.

How long does it take to charge a Kia e-Niro?

Charging Level Charging Output

Charging Times*

Standard Battery

(39.2 kWh)

Charging Times*

Large Battery

(64 kWh)

Level 1 (AC) 2.3 kW 18h45m 29h40m
Level 2 (AC) 7.4 kW 5h50m 9h15m
Level 3 (DC) 50 kW 30 min 50 min
Level 3 (DC) 75 kW 20 min 35 min
Level 3 (DC) 80+ kW N/A N/A

*These numbers provide a calculated estimation of charging times – from 0 to 100 percent (AC) and 20 to 80 (DC) percent state of charge (SOC) – and do not reflect actual charging times or real-life situations. For a more accurate representation of (or more information on) actual charging times, please refer to the original manufacturer or certified dealerships. The results are based on an equation that uses the standard battery size and average performance of charging stations as metrics and are rounded up for readability.

9. Ford Mustang Mach-E

A ford Mustang Mach-E parked on a rooftop car park during sunset..

The Ford Mustang Mach-E, reminiscent of the Ford Mustangs of the old, is the first edition to the Mustang lineup in 56 years and offers an extended-range battery, rear-wheel drive, and built-in charging solutions that route customers to nearby public charging stations.

Mustang Mach-E performance

Although the standard battery range is a large 70 kWh, the Mach-E also offers an extended battery capacity with one of the largest on the market.

  1. Standard range: has a 70 kWh battery, a fast charging capacity of 115 kW, and a range of up to 273 miles.
  2. Extended range: has a 91 kWh battery, a fast charging capacity of 150 kW, and a range of up to 379 miles.

Mustang Mach-E price

The starting price for a Mustang Mach-E ranges between £42,530 and £66,280* depending on which model of the vehicle you choose.

*The cost of a  can vary depending on your location or dealership. At the time of writing this article, we took Ford’s catalogue price.

How long does it take to charge a Mustang Mach-E?

Charging Level Charging Output

Charging Times*

Standard Battery

(70 kWh)

Charging Times*

Large Battery

(91 kWh)

Level 1 (AC) 2.3 kW 34h 46h
Level 2 (AC) 7.4 kW 10h55m 14h20m
Level 3 (DC) 50 kW 60 min 1h20m
Level 3 (DC) 115 kW 25 min 35 min
Level 3 (DC) 150 kW N/A 25 min

*These numbers provide a calculated estimation of charging times – from 0 to 100 percent (AC) and 20 to 80 (DC) percent state of charge (SOC) – and do not reflect actual charging times or real-life situations. For a more accurate representation of (or more information on) actual charging times, please refer to the original manufacturer or certified dealerships. The results are based on an equation that uses the standard battery size and average performance of charging stations as metrics and are rounded up for readability.

10. Fiat 500e

A Fiat taking a turn on a road during sunset.

The Fiat 500e, the first fully electric car from Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, made its debut in 2020. Integrating the classic Italian style of the original Fiat 500, the new 500e is an iconic city car with the same stylistic proportions and clean design. The 500e comes as a hatchback, a convertible, or with a 3+1 model, with a tiny fourth door to make the back seat more accessible.

Fiat 500e performance

Regardless of whether you choose a convertible or hatchback, the 500e comes in multiple different versions: the Action, the Icon and La Prima. Beyond cosmetics, the major difference between the four is the battery capacity and fast charging capacity. 

  1. Action: has a 24 kWh battery, with a fast charging capacity of 50 kW, and a range of 118 miles.
  2. Icon & La Prima: has a 42 kWh battery, with a fast charging capacity of 85 kW, and a range of 200 miles.

Fiat 500e price

The starting price for a Fiat 500e ranges between £23,835 and £30,835* depending on which model of vehicle you choose.  

*The cost of a Fiat 500e can vary depending on your location or dealership. At the time of writing this article, we took Fiat's catalogue price.

How long does it take to charge a Fiat 500e?

Charging Level Charging Output

Charging Times*

500e Action

(24 kWh)

Charging Times*

Icon, and La Prima

(42 kWh)

Level 1 (AC) 2.3 kW 10h 19h
Level 2 (AC) 7.4 kW 3h10m 6h
Level 3 (DC) 50 kW 20 min 35 min
Level 3 (DC) 85 kW N/A 20 min

*These numbers provide a calculated estimation of charging times – from 0 to 100 percent (AC) and 20 to 80 (DC) percent state of charge (SOC) – and do not reflect actual charging times or real-life situations. For a more accurate representation of (or more information on) actual charging times, please refer to the original manufacturer or certified dealerships. The results are based on an equation that uses the standard battery size and average performance of charging stations as metrics and are rounded up for readability.

We hope to have provided you with a clear overview of these popular EV models. There are of course many different ways and places to charge these electric vehicles. But, did you know that most EV drivers prefer to charge their vehicle at home? Visit our website to find out more about EV charging at home.

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