Top 10 plug-in cars of 2016

Top 10 plug-in cars of 2016


With so many plug-in electric cars due out in 2016, Zap Map has brought the most important ones together, taking a look at the exciting models due for launch in the next 12 months.

There are 50,000 electric cars already on UK roads, and with more high-quality models on their way, 2016 is set to see strong sales of plug-in cars as motorists get used to the performance and practicality of electric vehicles. The recent announcement that the Plug-in Car Grant has been extended to 2018 should get yet more support to anyone thinking of buying an EV for the first time.

Of the electric models in the showroom, it isn’t making too grand a statement to say that 2016 will be the year of the plug-in hybrid given their electric capability and flexibility to run on electricity or conventional fuel. That said, pure-electric vehicles won’t be far behind in sales with their impressive drive, zero-emissions and ultra-low fuel costs.

Whether pure electric or plug-in hybrid, expect to see plenty of electric vehicles on UK roads during 2016.

1. BMW PHEV range 86-134 MPG – 49-77 g/km CO2 – £33,935-£64,530

We’ve cheated here a little because BMW has confirmed that it will launch four PHEV models towards the start of 2016, with more potentially on their way. The BMWs 225xe, 330e, X5 xDrive 40e and 740e all offer plug-in variants of the family SUV, small executive saloon, SUV and large luxury saloon respectively. Perhaps the most important of the quartet is the 330e – a potential fleet eco-warrior that could see it challenge the Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV as best selling plug-in car.

BMW 225xe: 134.5 MPG – 46 g/km CO2 – £35,005
BMW 330e:> 134.5 MPG – 44 g/km CO2 – £33,935
BMW X5 xDrive 40e: 86 MPG – 77 g/km CO2 – £51,845
BMW 740e: 134.5 MPG – 49 g/km CO2 – £64,530

2. Citroen e-Mehari 124 miles – 0 g/km CO2 – £15,000 (est)

Although there are currently no confirmed plans to bring the e-Mehari to the UK, the little EV from Citroen could prove a crucial car for the plug-in market whether it reaches these shores or not. A pure EV, the e-Mehari has a top speed of 68mph and a town range of 124 miles from its 30kWh battery. Set to be a cheap, cheerful and modern car, Citroen would do well to put the e-Mehari into as many markets as possible.

citroen -mehari

3. Smart fortwo ev and forfour ev 130 miles (est) – 0 g/km CO2 – £15,000 (est)

The previous all-electric Smart was only available as the two-door city car but both of Smart’s urban runabouts will get the electric treatment this time around as the German brand looks to make the most of its fun compact cars. The same electric motor as found in the Renault Zoe will be used in each model, though Mercedes will manufacture the batteries itself.

4. Mercedes E-Class PHEV 130 MPG (est) – 50 g/km CO2 (est) – £45,000 (est)

There has been no official confirmation that a PHEV model of the forthcoming E-Class will be produced, though industry sources consider it almost a certainty. Mercedes’ renewed focus on comfortable motoring is something to be applauded so expect the E-Class to waft along with the best of them, while technology will take the executive car market on to the next level with features including semi-autonomous driving.

5. VW Tiguan GTE 149 MPG – 42 g/km CO2 – £35,000 (est)

Volkswagen has big plans to expand its electric model line-up and the Tiguan GTE follows in the footsteps of the brilliant Golf and Passat GTEs in offering practical plug-in motoring. Using a 1.5 litre turbocharged petrol engine alongside an electric motor to provide 215 bhp in total, the Tiguan GTE will be eligible for the UK Government’s Plug-in Car Grant and be exempt from road tax and congestion charging.

volvo s90

6. Volvo S90 T8 TwinEngine 135 MPG (est) – 49 g/km (est) – £35,000 (est)

Just as the BMW 330e is expected to shake up the small executive saloon sector, Volvo’s new S90 PHEV looks set to steal sales away from the medium executive sector. With Volvo’s current rich vein of form, including the recently released XC90 PHEV with which the S90 will share a platform and powertrain, the Swedish saloon looks set to have the attributes to back up its early promise. Volvo will include semi-autonomous driving technology alongside a T8 TwinEngine drivetrain that should see emissions around the 50 g/km CO2 mark and a fuel economy figure north of 130 MPG from the 400 bhp unit.

7. Kia Optima PHEV 119 MPG – 45 g/km (est) – £25,000 (est)

Kia’s latest version of its Optima has been confirmed to feature a PHEV model in 2016 as the company starts a dramatic push into green car manufacturing. The plug-in Optima will use Soul EV know how to offer a range of around 27 miles in electric mode. The motor will combine with a 2.0 litre petrol engine to produce a combined 200hp, with a real-world hybrid running fuel economy of around 50 MPG and a quoted 119 MPG officially.


8. Tesla Model X 250 miles – 0 g/km CO2 – £60,000 (est)

Tesla’s delayed launch of the Model X seems to have only increased the levels of anticipation around the all-electric SUV. Launched in the United States in October 2015, we shall have to wait until the middle of 2016 for deliveries in Europe. With a choice of three power outputs and a range of 200-250 miles between charges, the all-wheel drive Tesla can be ordered in 70D, 90D or P90D guise, sharing the specification line-up with the Model S saloon.

tesla model

9. Mitsubishi ASX PHEV 135 MPG (est) – 40 g/km (est) – £20,000 (est)

Following on from the huge success of the Outlander PHEV, Mitsubishi is more than likely to give the next version of its ASX a plug-in model too. With a blend of economy and performance that will be unrivalled in the competitive compact crossover sector, the PHEV ASX is expected to have the same dramatic impact on the market as it’s larger stablemate – perhaps even more so.

10. BMW i8 Spyder 140 MPG (est) – 45 g/km CO2 (est) – £110,000 (est)

There are two reasons why we haven’t put the i8 Spyder in with the earlier batch of BMW PHEVs. Firstly, at the time of going to press, it hasn’t been officially confirmed, and secondly it is more a halo model rather than a practical vehicle. Nonetheless, the i8 Spyder will still prove an important model for BMW, expected to bring with it powertrain upgrades for both it and the i8 coupe, while a raft of high-tech systems and connectivity options will also be present.