Last updated January 11, 2022
As the popularity of electric cars has continued to grow over recent years, so has the technology and their performance. Whilst EVs haven’t been built to generate extraordinary performance figures, there are now some family-friendly cars that are producing 0-62mph figures that can compete with supercars of the past.
If you’re looking at purchasing an electric car ahead of the 2030 petrol and diesel ban, you may be surprised to find you can compete with the latest combustion hypercars in a straight sprint. In this article, we have looked at the fastest accelerating electric vehicles available on the market today, so you can enjoy blistering speeds whilst lowering your carbon footprint.
The fastest accelerating electric vehicle available to purchase is the Tesla Model S AWD Plaid edition, which can reach 62mph from a standing start in an astonishing 1.99 seconds and a top speed of 200mph. As well as the performance figures being nothing short of extraordinary for a spacious 5-door saloon, this spec also has a range of 396 miles. However, if you do want to combine speed, comfort, and the latest technology, you will need to have deep pockets, with the AWD Plaid Edition starting at £118,980.
Not only have Tesla developed the fastest accelerating electric car, the Model S is also the best electric car for range, with the Long Range spec able to drive a claimed 405 miles on a full charge. Alongside its impressive range, the Long Range AWD 5dr Auto can reach 0-62mph in 3.1 seconds, which would still rank quite highly on our list, despite not being the flagship Model S for outright performance.
Stepping inside the Model S, you get the usual minimalist interior we have come to expect from Tesla, with a huge 17” portrait cinematic display in the centre of the dashboard which is used to control most of the car’s functions, including the Tesla Trip Planner which will automatically calculate your route based on the availability of Superchargers. As mentioned above, the Model S is also an extremely practical car, with up to 894 litres of boot space, of which 150 litres is in the front of the car where a combustion engine would usually be. By putting down the back seats, you can gain an additional 750 litres of storage space, making it one of the most practical saloon cars on the market.
To fully charge a Tesla Model S using a conventional three-pin household plug will take around a day and a half. However, if you purchase a wall-mounted home charger from Tesla, this can be reduced to around 14 hours. Tesla’s most powerful 120kW Superchargers can charge the Model S to 80% in just 42 minutes, although Tesla doesn’t advise using these regularly due to the long-term effects on battery performance.
You can find more information on the Model S by visiting Tesla’s website.
Unsurprisingly, the second fastest accelerating car is also a Tesla, with the Model X Plaid reaching 0-62mph in 2.5 seconds. This also makes it the fastest SUV in the world, which shows how Tesla have managed to match practicality and performance seamlessly through their design and technology. The Tesla Model X Plaid is slightly cheaper than the Model S, with prices starting from £110,980. Due to the huge batteries used by Tesla, the car can still drive a reported range of 333 miles and has a power output of 1,020bhp.
If you are willing to sacrifice performance for an increased electric range, you can opt for the Model X Long Range, which has a claimed range of 348 miles, yet can still reach 0-62 mph in 3.8 seconds. Tesla also claims that the Model X is the lowest drag SUV on earth, which helps it accelerate, maintain, and decrease its speed effortlessly.
Whilst the Model X comes as a five-seater as standard, it is possible to spec the car to have six or seven seats, making it even more practical for larger families. The car also comes packed with technology, including Tesla’s autopilot system, which allows you to enter a motorway, change lanes and park autonomously, although this doesn’t come as standard yet. The recent facelift has meant that the Model X also comes with wireless charging and gaming, an improved infotainment system and a 22-speaker audio system so you can enjoy the HiFi regardless of where you’re sat in the car.
You can find further information on the Model X here.
The first none-Tesla car on our list is the Porsche Taycan Turbo S AWD, which can reach 0-62mph in 2.8 seconds. It is powered by a 93.4Kwh battery, which allows the car to accelerate quickly and reach speeds of up to 162mph. Despite the impressive performance figures, the best performance spec of Porsche’s flagship electric model can still travel 258 miles on a full charge. To buy the Taycan Turbo S AWD will cost £139,280, with an array of additional extras making the car more expensive if you choose to add them.
To charge the Taycan Turbo S to 100% using a 9.6kW charger takes 10.5 hours, with this time reduced further by using a DC charger, although Porsche recommends against using these frequently due to the wear and tear on the battery. Like Tesla’s, the Taycan is an extremely practical car, with four doors, a spacious interior and 450 litres of boot space if you include the space in the front of the car where a combustion engine would usually be.
If you would prefer a more practical car, you can opt for the more spacious Porsche Taycan Turo S Cross Turismo, which has a larger boot and slightly more space in the rear seats. The added weight does mean the 0-62 drops by a mere 0.1 seconds to 2.9. However, the price is also higher than the saloon, with the OTR price starting from £140,360.
Find further information on the Taycan Turbo S here.
Despite being the cheapest Tesla available, the Model 3 has maintained an impressive range despite being more compact and having less space than the Model S and X. With prices starting at £40,990 for the entry-level ‘Standard Range Plus’, it is marketed to compete with the likes of the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C-class.
For the fastest accelerating Model 3, you will need the Performance model that starts at £59,990, which is considerably cheaper than the other cars that boast similar performance figures. The Performance spec can reach 0-62mph in an impressive 3.1 seconds and has a top speed of 162mph, making it a compact hatchback that will compete with most supercars in a drag race. In comparison to the base spec, the Performance model comes with 20” Uberturbine alloy wheels, performance brakes and a lowered suspension for improved handling at high speeds.
Both the Performance and Long Range Model 3’s are powered by two independent motors at the front and rear of the car, which digitally control the torque to ensure unpropelled traction and control at high speeds. If you regularly drive long distances, the Long Range may be the better option, even if it means that it is slightly slower than the Performance version. Tesla claims that the Long Range can travel up to 360 miles on a single charge. With the use of the Supercharger network, you could charge the car up to 172 miles in just 15 minutes.
Despite the considerably lower price than the other cars at the top of our list, the Model 3 comes with a generous amount of equipment, with a premium finish interior, heated front and rear seats, 14-speaker audio system and a 15” infotainment system that is used to control most of the car’s functions.
Visit the manufacturer website for further details.
Although the Audi RS E-Tron GT Saloon is two places below the Porsche Taycan Turbo on our list, it shares much of the same technology due to both cars being based on the VW Group J1 platform. This is also the first fully electric Audi to hold the RS badge and it belongs with the great RS models that have been produced in the past.
The Audi benefits from the same 93.4kW battery that powers the Porsche, with two batteries at the front and rear of the car powering both axles. The batteries produce an impressive 637bhp, with a 0-62 time of 3.3 seconds, making it just half a second slower to 62mph than the Porsche. Unlike the Porsche which doesn’t have a speed limiter, Audi have limited the RS E-Tron GT to 155mph, although that won’t be a problem unless you take the car onto a track.
If price is a deciding factor, the Audi is competitively priced compared to the direct competitors, with the price starting from £113,200, which is over £20,000 cheaper than the Porsche and around £5,000 cheaper than the Model S Plaid. In comparison, the car drives very similarly with an adaptive air suspension, rear wheel steering, sports differential, and electronic torque vectoring as standard.
Not only does the Audi offer an exhilarating driving experience, but the claimed electric range is also impressive at 283 miles. Whilst this will reduce considerably if you regularly utilise the car’s performance capabilities, it should mean that the car is still economical when cruising on country roads and the motorway. Using a DC charger, Audi claims you can generate enough power to travel 62 miles in just 5 minutes and charge from 5-80% in approximately 23 minutes.
You can find further information on the RS E-TRON GT here.
The latest model Tesla has added to their roster is the Model Y, which is the all-new Tesla SUV. The model Y can carry 7 passengers and still reach 0-62mph in 3.5 seconds. As with the other Tesla’s, the range is also impressive, with the Model Y able to travel a claimed 298 miles on a full charge. You can also utilise the growing number of Superchargers to charge the car to 150 miles of range in just 15 minutes.
The Model Y also shares the driving technology with the other models, including the all-wheel-drive system which is powered by two independent motors that digitally control the torque to each of the axles. Despite the size of the car, this means that the traction, handling, and stability control is that good that you can easily forget you’re driving a car that can carry 7 passengers. Tesla also claims that the Model Y has been designed to drive in all-weather conditions, with the Performance spec starting at £64,990, which is cheaper than the equivalent spec on the Model S and Model X.
For a longer range, you can opt for the aptly named ‘Long Range’ spec which can travel a claimed 315 miles on a single charge, however, those additional 17 miles come at the expense of the 0-62mph figure dropping to 4.8 seconds. Both versions share a 150mph top speed, which is slower than the other cars in Tesla’s fleet, but that’s to be expected due to the sheer size and weight of the car.
The primary selling point of the Model Y is that it has room for 7 passengers, with an optional third row and a huge cargo volume of 2,158 litres. Additionally, each second-row seat can fold flat independently, and the boot opens to a low floor which makes filling the space easy. In addition, the cabin is filled with technology, with a huge 15” landscape infotainment system that is designed to improve over time through their new over the air system. Whilst the Model Y has full self-drive capabilities, you can’t yet use it on the UK roads due to the government placing restrictions on it for the moment.
Find out more about the all-new Model Y here.
Marginally behind the Model Y is Ford’s flagship Mustang Mach-E GT, which can achieve 0-62mph in just 3.7 seconds, making it the fastest accelerating road-legal Ford car ever manufactured. The Mustang Mach-E GT with the fastest acceleration is only available with all-wheel-drive, but if you are looking for an enhanced driving experience, they do offer some of the other specs with rear-wheel-drive. Despite the car reaching 62mph in a blistering time, the top speed of the car is just 124mph, which makes it the slowest car on our list. To purchase the Mach-E GT will cost you £67,225 without any extras, although the car comes loaded with an abundance of equipment as standard.
The car is powered by a dual-motor AWD system, with an adaptive suspension and state-of-the-art Brembo braking system. The all-electric powertrain allows the car to generate 485bhp and 860Nm of torque. Inside, you will get Ford Performance Seats, the latest 15.5” infotainment system, a 10 speaker B&O Sound System and an array of safety features. The car is also extremely practical, with enough passenger space to comfortably fit four adults and 502 litres of boot space with the seats up. If you need more storage space, the Mach-E GT can fit up to 1,420 litres of belongings with the back seats folded flat.
In terms of range, the Mach-E can travel an impressive 310 miles on a full charge with the standard 88kWh battery. Charging with a 150kW charger will allow you to gain 60 miles of driving in just 10 minutes, and you can charge from 10-80% battery within approximately 40 minutes. If you charge the car with a home wall box charger, you should be able to achieve a full charge overnight.
You can find out more about the Mustang Mach-E GT here.
The first BMW to feature on our list is the BMW I4 Gran Coupe – the M50 reaches 0-62mph in just 3.9 seconds, with the car powered by a 544bhp motor that powers the all-wheel-drive system. The i4 Gran coupe M50 has a combined range of 318 miles on one single charge and prices for this performance spec model start at £63,905.
If you’re a fan of the design of the I4 Gran Coupe and want a car that has a longer range, you could instead opt for the eDrive40 M Sport spec, which can travel 352 miles on a single charge and still reaches 0-62mph in 5.7 seconds. The price is more friendly to your bank balance too, with this spec starting from £53,405, just over £10,000 cheaper than the performance M50.
Both models can charge to 90 miles of range in just 10 minutes at a DC fast charger. An additional feature of the I4 is the artificial noises that are added to the vehicle when you press down the accelerator to make it sound as though the car has a combustion engine.
Inside the car, the most prominent feature is the curved display. Although it may appear to be one elongated display at first glance, it is two separate 12.3” and 14.9” displays. The 12.3” display covers the driver information, whilst the 14.9” display is for the infotainment system.
You can find out further information on the I4 Gran Coupe here.
The Polestar 2 Fastback is one of the most complete electric cars on the market at an attractive price point. Whilst Polestar was once Volvo’s racing brand, it has now morphed into the electric sub-brand that is owned by Volvo and their Chinese counterpart, Geely. The Polestar Long Range Dual Motor starts at £45,900 and can reach 0-62mph in an impressive 4.5 seconds despite the car weighing a whopping 2.1 tonnes.
The performance model has a power output of just over 400bhp, with electric motors separately powering the front and rear axles. Despite the weight of the car and the solid performance metrics, the car can still travel a combined 299 miles on a full charge and reach a top speed of 127mph, which wouldn’t ever be needed on the UK’s roads.
Almost mimicking the look of the Tesla fleet, the Polestar features a panoramic roof, which reduces UV radiation and noise whilst providing wide-angle views. The interior also features the world’s first android operating system as Polestar has partnered with Google. The Google infotainment system includes a range of built-in apps that are designed specifically for Polestar to make journeys easier, which includes EasyPark that finds you parking spaces and stops payments when you resume your journey. There are also features that allow you to find charger friendly routes when planning a journey, which is similar to the feature found on Tesla’s.
All specifications of the Polestar can reach full charge in just 35 minutes using a fast charger and just 8 hours using a home wall box charger, which you may be eligible to receive aid from a government grant to install one in your home – you can find out more about that here.
To see the full spec of the Polestar 2 Fastback, visit this page.
Last on our top 10 list of the fastest accelerating electric cars is the BMW iX xDrive50, which can reach 62mph from a standstill in 4.6 seconds using its 385kW electric motors that produce 523bhp. The car is powered by a twin-motor AWD system, which allows the car to grip to the road and gain instant traction from the traffic lights.
In terms of range, BMW claims the highest performance spec can travel 380 miles on a full charge, providing you don’t upgrade the standard 21-inch wheels and add additional extras which will add to the weight of the car.
Inside the cabin, the iX is similar to the I4 Gran Coupe, with an added sense of luxury and minimalism. It features the same 14.9” infotainment screen and 12.3” digital instrument panel with extremely crisp graphics. BMW also claim that the iX has 20x the computing power of any previous model with the new iDrive 8 system powering the infotainment. This includes features such as mixed-reality navigation, 5G connectivity and the ability to unlock your car using your mobile phone. For a car that can reach 0-62mph in such a short time, it feels roomy inside and all the materials used are of a high quality, including the soft leather quilted seats and metal trim.
When it comes to charging, the BMW iX xDrive50 can be charged from 10-80% capacity using a DC charger in 35 minutes. However, regularly using these chargers can have a negative impact on the battery life, so it is recommended to use a less powerful 7.4kW wall chargers where possible, which can take 16 hours to charge the car from 0-100%.
Visit the manufacturer website to find out more about the BMW iX.