Choosing an electric SUV that can handle long road trips and off-road adventures requires careful consideration.
For most EV buyers, the top considerations are range, power, comfort and safety features.
Range. EVs these days have a range of at least 150 miles before needing recharging, and some can go closer to 350.
Power. An electric SUV needs enough oomph to get up hills, but might not have enough power to tow a trailer. If that’s something you’re planning on doing, there are also EV pickup trucks already on the market. But that’s a different article.
Comfort. After all, you’ll be spending a lot of time in your car on these trips, so you might as well be comfortable.
Safety. Many EVs include such safety features as lane departure alert and emergency braking as standard..
Here are three EV SUVs to consider – two affordable and one luxury model – all with appealing features and good looks.
2023 Chevrolet Bolt EUV
Chevrolet calls the Bolt SUV model an EUV – for Electric Utility Vehicle. Whatever you call it, it’s a great choice for those who are looking for an urban adventure or weekend getaway vehicle.
The Bolt EUV offers a comfortable and capable ride whether on city streets or winding back roads. It offers 150hp, which is adequate for a model this size. When fully charged, the Bolt can travel 247 miles, and it recharges fully in seven hours at 240v.
The EUV design is not only stylish but also practical, with plenty of room for cargo and passengers. There’s an impressive 56.9 feet of cargo space with the rear seat down, making it a perfect vehicle if you’re going somewhere that will require a bit of luggage.
The price point is also very attractive, starting at $27,200. – which is actually $6,300 less than the 2022 model. This makes it a great option for budget-minded shoppers.
Upgrade models include a heated steering wheel and adaptive cruise control. And there’s also a sedan-like model, the Chevrolet Bolt EV. Hertz is buying thousands of Bolt models for the national rental fleet.
2023 Nissan LEAF
The LEAF is the best-selling EV on the planet.
All LEAF models feature Nissan’s Safety Shield® 360 as standard equipment, with six active driver assistance technologies that can help drivers avoid or lessen the severity of a crash. Upgrade models feature Nissan’s ProPilot Assist driver assistance system, which includes adaptive cruise control and lane keeping assist.
The LEAF base S trim has a starting price of around $27,800, and qualified purchasers may be eligible for up to a $7,500 federal tax credit, making it one of the most affordable electric vehicles on the market.
Adding more value LEAF added a CHAdeMO Quick Charge Port and portable 240-volt charging cable for every model with the 2022 model, allowing it to be charged to 80% in just 40 minutes. Such super-fast charging is just for emergencies, since a regular diet depletes the life of the batteries.
It has a range of up to 150 miles on a single charge, and offers 147hp, which is generous for a vehicle this size..
If you’re looking to refinance your auto loan, you can get a great rate on a LEAF from Nissan.com.
The LEAF is a great option for anyone looking for an affordable electric SUV that doesn’t sacrifice on performance or range.
2023 Tesla Model X
With an estimated range of 348 miles before needing to recharge, the 2023 Tesla Model X is ideal for long-distance road trips.
But with a hefty pricetag of $112,500. it’s out of the range of many buyers and leasers.
For the price, it’s spacious, good looking and loaded with comfort and safety features, and more power than most of us know what to do with. According to Edmunds, X marks the spot for a mind-boggling 678hp. There’s also powerful regenerative braking in case you accelerate faster than you intended.
The powerful engine allows for towing, and the Model X includes a towing hitch.
The cabin is quiet and relaxing, and the seats are extremely comfortable. There’s plenty of room for luggage, too, and heated seats and steering wheel are standard. And its dramatic gull-wing doors make it easy to get in and out of.
Of course the Model X is loaded with Tesla’s famous driver-assist features, called AutoPilot, including adaptive cruise control, lane keeping and forward collision warning that applies the brakes in certain scenarios. But it’s still not ready for you to sit back and read a book while the system does the driving for you.
And its dramatic gull-wing doors make it easy to get in and out of.
Whether you’re planning a cross-country trip or simply want a reliable and comfortable car for your daily commute, the Tesla Model X is an excellent choice – if you can afford it.
ecoXplorer Evelyn Kanter is a journalist with 20+ years of experience as a newspaper and magazine writer, radio & TV news producer & reporter, and author of guidebooks and smartphone apps – all focusing on travel, automotive, the environment and your rights as a consumer.
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