2017 Hyundai Ioniq Electric
2017 Hyundai Ioniq ElectricEnlarge Photo
2017 Hyundai Ioniq Electric: 124 miles
Deliveries of the all-electric Hyundai Ioniq Electric began in January, as one of three Ioniq variants that will be on sale by the end of 2017.
The Ioniq Hybrid version, which will be the highest-volume model, went on sale first, and a 2018 Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid model will be the third member of the trio when it goes on sale late this year.
While its 124-mile range puts it just below the VW e-Golf, the Ioniq's EPA-rated 136 MPGe combined makes it the most energy-efficient car available in the U.S.
(Miles Per Gallon Equivalent, or MPGe, is a measure of how far a car can travel electrically on the same amount of energy as contained in 1 gallon of gasoline).
Hyundai plans to boost the Ioniq Electric's range to at least 200 miles by 2018, Ahn Byung-ki—director of Hyundai's eco-vehicle performance group—said during a media event at the carmaker's Michigan technical center last year.
2017 Ford Focus Electric
2017 Ford Focus ElectricEnlarge Photo
2017 Ford Focus Electric: 115 miles
Like the Volkswagen e-Golf, the Ford Focus Electric is a low-volume electric variant of a popular compact hatchback.
Another thing it has in common with the VW: it only broke the 100-mile barrier due to upgrades introduced for the 2017 model year.
The Focus Electric's range was previously a back-of-the-pack 76 miles, but the 2017 model's EPA-rated 115-mile range now makes its competitive with other mainstream-priced electric cars.
For 2017, the Focus Electric also gets standard DC fast charging, using the Combined Charging Standard (CCS).
Historically, the Focus Electric has been a compliance car, sold only in the volumes required for Ford to meet California's zero-emission vehicle mandate.
That policy clearly continues with the updated model, whose cargo area remains severely compromised by the onboard charger mounted between the rear wheel wells—a problem fixed in the Nissan Leaf back in 2013.
2017 BMW i3
2017 BMW i3Enlarge Photo
2017 BMW i3: 114 miles
The 2017 BMW i3 gets a boost to 114 miles of range, thanks to a much larger battery pack.
The new pack has 33 kWh of capacity, a roughly 50-percent increase over the previous, 22-kWh pack.
That smaller pack will still be available in base models, which will have the same 81-mile range as the 2016 i3.
BMW also continues to offer the i3 REx model, which uses a 0.65-liter two-cylinder gasoline engine as a range extender.
Equipped with the 33-kWh battery pack and a larger-capacity fuel tank than previous models, the 2017 i3 REx has an electric range of 97 miles, plus another 83 miles on gasoline, for a total range of 180 miles
2017 Nissan Leaf
2017 Nissan LeafEnlarge Photo
2017 Nissan Leaf: 107 miles
The 2017 Nissan Leaf achieves 107 miles of range with the 30-kWh battery pack introduced for the 2016 model year.
That pack is now standard across all trim levels, with the smaller 24-kWh pack (which afforded an 84-mile range) eliminated from the base Leaf S model.
While the Leaf is the best-selling electric car in history, the current version is a fairly old design, and it is now essentially uncompetitive as longer-range electric cars become more common.
Deep discounts have been offered on the aging Leaf, up to $10,000 from certain local electric utilities in specific markets, on top of existing discounts and federal and state incentives as well.
The 2018 Nissan Leaf, a completely updated model with a 150-mile range rating, will go on sale early in 2018, and a version of the Leaf with a range of 200 miles or more will appear as a 2019 model.