Average Electric Car Range

How far can you drive in an electric car? That's one of the biggest questions that consumers ask when it comes to electric cars. And no wonder, given that electric car charging takes anywhere from 30 minutes at the fastest 50kWh DC charging points found along motorways up to 8 hours or more on a home charger.

If you're driving over 400 miles from London to Scotland, for instance, you may be wondering how many times you'll have to stop along the way to charge your electric car. Use the information in this article to help understand what to expect from electric car ranges. You can find advice on maximizing range in our article, Top Ten Tips for Maximizing Electric Car Range.

Real-Life Electric Car Ranges

We've analysed the market and found real-life ranges for the various models on offer. Where possible, we sourced our data directly from car websites. In other cases we surveyed car dealers for real-life summer, winter and average ranges. Tesla models have the longest ranges by a mile due to large batteries, but at prices north of £60k a Tesla is out of most household budgets. Excluding Tesla, the average real-life range is 133 miles on a full charge. Including the four Tesla S models, the average electric car range jumps up to 180 miles.

How Far Can an Electric Car Really Go?

Real-Life EV RangesSummer RangeWinter RangeAverage Range
Renault Zoe 22kW R901067189
BMW i3 90Ah132111125
Renault Zoe Z.E. 40 Q90 Quick Charge174112143
Renault Zoe Z.E. 40 R90186124155
Nissan Leaf 40 kWh150180170
Tesla S 75214206210
Tesla S 75D235225230
Tesla S 100D347333340
Tesla S P100D306294300
Avg. UK Electric Car Range (excl. Tesla)165131149
Avg. UK Electric Car Range (incl. Tesla)209182196

Real-Life vs NEDC Ranges

Most car manufacturer websites advertise NEDC ranges—and they are highly misleading. NEDC ranges can overstate real-life ranges by up to 40% or more. NEDC testing conditions do not mimic real life: low accelerations, constant cruising speeds, no AC or heat, etc. Be sure to understand the real-life ranges on any car you are considering before you buy. The chart below shows the significant difference between NEDC ranges and real-life ranges for UK electric cars.

chart showing the difference between nedc and real-life ranges for electric cars in the UK
NEDC Ranges Overly Optimistic