If you aren’t regularly travelling long distances, the Standard Range Plus probably makes the most sense, on paper at least.Read more…
Electric Car Reviews
Our electric car reviews will help you compare the different vehicles on offer in 2021
We’re reader-supported and may be paid when you visit links to partner sites. We don’t compare all products in the market, but we’re working on it!
Compare models and read in-depth electric car reviews
Interested in buying an electric car? These electric car reviews will help you find one that matches your requirements.
By clicking "Find a Deal" on the table below, you will be redirected to our partner, Georgie. Thanks to their "bulk buying power", Georgie can help you buy the car you want and potentially save you money too. In fact, the average saving through Georgie is $4,616.
We update our data regularly, but information can change between updates. Confirm details with the provider you're interested in before making a decision.
Latest electric car reviews by Finder
What are EV cars?
Electric vehicles, or EVs for short, are battery-powered automobiles. Power is stored in a pack of rechargeable batteries, and drive comes from an electric motor.
Electric car builders may install one, two or even four motors. The most common battery type is Lithium-Ion (Li-ion), which is increasingly found in everything from mass-market handheld devices to remote-controlled models. There are weight, discharge and energy density benefits to Li-ion, making them the go-to power cell until new battery technology is developed.
Because of the way electric motors deliver torque, acceleration is far more immediate than an internal combustion engine.
Instead of having a fuel filler, EVs have a charging plug, and replacing your trips to a petrol station is a visit to a charger.
What's the difference between an EV, PHEV and a hybrid/mild hybrid?
An EV (or more accurately, a Battery Electric Vehicle/BEV) has one or more electric motors and a rechargeable power bank that provides propulsion. Tesla is the most obvious and perhaps well-known EV maker, though established car manufacturers like BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Hyundai and Nissan are all in the game now.
A PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle) is a car with electric motors, a much smaller battery array and a traditional fossil-fuel engine. It combines the two forms of drive to provide the best of both worlds, including reduced fuel usage, emissions and an EV-only mode. As the name implies, you can plug-in a PHEV to recharge the batteries. An example of PHEV would be the Mitsubishi Outlander or Hyundai Ioniq. There are even some large SUVs like the Range Rover available as PHEV variants.
A Mild-Hybrid Electric Vehicle (MHEV) generates its own electrical energy from a traditional internal combustion engine and augments it with an electric motor. Typically, there's no option to select electric-only mode, though it often automatically activates at low-speeds – for example, when the stored power allows. You could think of an MHEV as a stepping stone between a PHEV and a traditional internal combustion engine car. Perhaps the most famous MHEV is the Toyota Prius.
The PHEV or MHEV acronyms more accurately denote the type of "hybrid" vehicle a model is.
Electric Vehicle incentives & subsidies
Historically, Australia has lagged behind other developed countries with few states and territories offering substantial Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) subsidies or rebates. There are now some state-level incentives, like stamp duty and registration discounts in NSW, ACT, Victoria and Queensland.
NSW electric car incentives
Starting 1 September 2021, the NSW Government is offering 25,000 $3,000 'rebates' to buyers of electric cars valued under $68,750 (including GST).
Additionally, from the same date, electric vehicles worth less than $78,000 (whether new or used) will be exempt from stamp duty. The NSW Government says that equals to potential savings of up to $5,540!
Reportedly, further details are coming soon.
Victoria electric car incentives
However, from 2 May 2021, Victoria is introducing a $3,000 Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) subsidy scheme. The incentive is designed to effectively reduce the cost of purchasing an eco-friendly vehicle and to encourage the uptake of electric cars. The first payments from the Victorian Government should happen in July 2021.
Am I eligible for an electric vehicle subsidy?
Initially, the Victorian Government is making 4,000 grants available, each worth $3,000. Two more rounds of subsidies will occur, over the next few years.
Eligibility criteria for the Victoria ZEV subsidy:
- You must be a Victorian resident or business located in the state (proof of residential status and identity required)
- Private buyers have one subsidy only. Businesses can apply for two.
- Car must be valued under $68,740
- Motorbikes and other non-car vehicles do not qualify.
According to the ZEV Subsidy website, the grant is deducted from the final price at the point of sale. Tesla says the value is taken from the driveaway price. Your electric vehicle dealer should know more.
Here are some things you need to think about when purchasing an electric car.
Which EV model is best?
Best is a subjective term, so the ideal electric car for you will depend on how you plan on using it.
10 September 2020 - update
There are a number of options when considering emission-free vehicles in Australia. We have ranked all electric vehicles currently available in Australia in 2020 as well as showing you what is to come in the near future.
Which EV should I buy for a family car?
If you've got kids, you're definitely going to need space. You might like something SUV shaped, these models are proving extremely popular with car buyers at the moment. You'll also no doubt appreciate a practical and hard-wearing interior. Safety likely ranks as a high priority for parents.
That narrows our comparison down to a handful of key models, the Tesla Model X, the Mercedes EQC, Jaguar's I-Pace and the Hyundai Kona.
The first three are all built by luxury/high-end car manufacturers, with corresponding prices. So for the Model X, Tesla asks from $136,895 (not including taxes and fees), the Merc is around $144,933 (drive-away cost), while the Jag can be in hand from $155,376. They're not cheap, but you are getting a prestige SUV.
The Tesla Model X was highly reviewed by a family car review. The only point it got knocked back on was the price. The doors lift upwards which is also a really handy touch when you've got arms full of groceries and kids and need to pop them in the car.
The Jaguar is touted as a serious competitor to the Model X, with great handling, mean styling and an interior that is described as supreme. Car reviewers wrote of the Mercedes-Benz EQC that it was a really luxurious and refined EV that perhaps was a little too heavy and lacking in range.
At the other end of the EV SUV market is the Kona, which starts at $63,607. The Kona is a smaller vehicle, more akin to a crossover than an SUV. Motoring experts said the Kona was still a touch pricey, but that it was comfortable, with a respectable range and a practical interior.
All of the above models are modern vehicles, featuring many advanced safety assists.
Which EV is the most sporty?
The fastest electric car currently available in Australia is the Tesla Model S Performance, which blasts from 0-100km/h in just 2.6 seconds.
Porsche builds the Taycan Turbo S, which has 560kW and zips from a standing start to 100km/h in 2.8 seconds. The Taycan also has lots of sporty tech like adaptive air suspension, rear-axle steering, Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control Sport (PDCC Sport) and torque vectoring. Car reviewers described the Taycan as phenomenal, with jaw-dropping performance and a stylish design.
Which EV is good for around-town driving?
You'll probably want something compact for pure city-use, making parking and navigating tight roads easier. The Nissan Leaf springs to mind. It's sold as the world's best-selling EV, has a 270km range and some unique features which make it well-suited to eating up city streets.
For a start, there's the single-pedal driving mode, which automatically brakes when you ease off the accelerator. It smoothens out potholes and speed bumps with clever use of the brakes and motor. It even brakes each wheel separately for better turning. Then there's the list of safety assists. Couple those with its keen (for an EV) starting drive-away price of $54,494 and you can see why it's so popular.
Hyundai's Ioniq would also be another strong contender for similar reasons.
Which EV should I buy for a company car?
If you need to travel long distances, range is going to be the most critical factor to consider. Tesla still holds the crown for the EV with the most range, as of January 2020. The Model S Long Range spec has a New European Driving Cycle (NEDC – actually created in the 80s) derived range of 713km! The NEDC test is more of an ideal conditions figure. The Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP – came into effect in 2017) takes place in a lab, but inputs real-world data into the equation. The Model S Long Range has a WLTP figure of 610km, which is still the highest on the market to date.
Also, with the Tesla network of superchargers, you can restore up to 249km of range in just 15 mins.
I want an electric ute
Your options at the moment are a bit limited, but they are coming.
The Tesla Cybertruck is perhaps the most obvious option. It'll start from $58,900 when it arrives here probably by 2022. It's a bit of a beast, with a towing capacity of 6.35 tonnes on the top-spec model and a super rugged stainless-steel body. Models are also incoming from Rivian and Bollinger. It is also believed that major car companies like Ford and GM are working on EV utes. Locally, many mining companies are already converting staples like the LandCruiser 79 to electric power.
Where can I charge my electric car?
If you own a Tesla, you can check this Tesla Superchargers map.
Picture: Nissan, Jaguar, Toyota, Tesla, Range Rover, Hyundai and Porsche
More guides on Finder
MG HS plug-in hybrid review: A compelling medium SUV
The MG HS brings to the medium SUV space hybrid performance at a petrol price, and it does so with the full suite of modern features. It lacks a voice that’s truly its own, but does enough to demand a test drive.
2021 Kia Sportage Review
In 2020, the Toyota RAV4, Mazda CX-5 and Nissan X-Trail all outsold the Kia Sportage. That's not to say this is a bad car; in fact, the motoring media reviewed it favourably.
Suzuki Jimny Lite: Release date, specs, price, models and more
A complete guide to the stripped-back 2021 Suzuki Jimny Lite 4x4 .
Volvo Concept Recharge fully electric SUV: 15 sexiest new features
Car manufacturer Volvo shows off its vision for the next generation of electric vehicles, starting with the Volvo Concept Recharge SUV.
2021 MG HS Review
MG's HS is a convincing mid-size SUV. It offers undeniable value, a well-designed interior, ample practicality and is a genuinely attractive car from the still fledgling brand.
2021 Volvo XC90 Recharge Plug-in Hybrid Review
If you’re after a large SUV, you’re spoiled for choice. However, if you’re looking for a large SUV that attempts to reduce its footprint on the planet your options are considerably less. Enter the Volvo XC90 Recharge Plug-in Hybrid ...
2021 MG ZS Review
It seems the ZST is really a jack of all trades kind of car. It looks good, is specced well, drives nicely and is acceptably practical.
Finally, Kia brings electric and hybrid Niro to Australia
Which Kia Niro would you choose? Hybrid, plug-in hybrid or electric?
Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus review
If you aren’t regularly travelling long distances, the Standard Range Plus probably makes the most sense, on paper at least.
Best air compressors in Australia
Here are the top air compressors you can buy in Australia right now.
Ask an Expert