The 5 Best EVs for First Time Buyers


Electric vehicles may seem daunting to first-time buyers. EVs don’t run on gasoline, so even a simple thing like recharging your car may seem confusing to EV newbies.


The truth of the matter is that many electric vehicles come jam-packed with features that traditional car shoppers might not be familiar with, but at the end of the day, it’s still a car.

Certain EVs will appeal to first-time buyers because of their ease of use, along with other models that are electrified variants of already popular models.


1. Tesla Model 3

The Tesla Model 3 is one of the most popular electric vehicles on the planet. It’s hard to go too long without spotting one of these compact Tesla vehicles roaming your local roads.

The great thing about the Model 3 is that although it’s packed with the latest tech, it’s a super simple machine to get into and start driving around in. In this regard, it’s very reminiscent of an Apple product; it’s intuitive and functional. Even the interior of the Model 3 tries to be as simple as possible, implementing Tesla’s minimalist interior philosophy perfectly.

The Model 3 can also travel up to 358 miles on a single charge. This means first-time EV buyers won’t have to worry about range anxiety with the Model 3 Long Range AWD. Another awesome thing about the Model 3 is that its styling is low-key and doesn’t scream over-the-top EV. The only thing that might seem intimidating to first-time EV buyers is charging your Model 3 at home, and even this is made easy.

Tesla allows you to set the time you’re going to be departing your home, and Model 3 will take care of charging and preconditioning the car, so it will be ready to leave when you are. The Model 3 is also one of the safest vehicles on the road, so first-time EV buyers can rest assured that their electric vehicle is just as safe as any conventional car. It’s also available with all-wheel drive, so you can feel safe driving it around year-round.

2. Nissan Leaf

nissan leaf white charging in garage via level 2 home charger

The Nissan Leaf looks like a stereotypical electric vehicle. Or, perhaps stereotypical electric cars look like the Nissan Leaf. Regardless, the Nissan Leaf, especially the first generation, has very peculiar styling.

There’s no way to get around the fact that its appearance may not be everyone’s cup of tea. But styling is completely subjective, and some people will love it. What isn’t up for debate is that the Nissan Leaf is a great EV for first-time buyers, especially if your commute is confined to the city because the Leaf offers up to 212 miles of range.

The Nissan Leaf is still an air-cooled EV, so this is something that prospective buyers should keep in mind. This is especially important if you live in an extremely hot climate, where the Leaf’s air cooling will find itself put to the test. If you step into the latest generation Nissan Leaf, the interior looks like any conventional Nissan.

Again, this might be a negative for some people, but if you’re looking for an easy-to-use, no-frills EV, the Leaf is perfect. The latest Leaf is even quite conventionally styled on the exterior, losing some of the first generation’s quirkiness. Another great point favoring the Leaf is its accessible price. Many first-time EV buyers are put off by the expensive price tags that electric vehicles carry. But the Leaf starts at $28,040, which makes it an amazing value.

3. Tesla Model Y

Tesla-Model-Y
Image Credit: Courtesy of Tesla, Inc.

The Model Y provides all the same awesome attributes as the Model 3 but with an SUV-like build. If you love the Model 3 but need the SUV form factor, the Model Y is the perfect fit.

The great thing about the Model Y is that although it looks like an SUV, it actually has the handling characteristics of a sporty car. This makes the Model Y one of the safest SUVs on the market, and the AWD system guarantees that this EV can be driven year-round.

The Model Y has all the great things we love in the Model 3, including the minimalist interior appointments, but with the added benefit of a taller cargo area. With 76 cu-ft of cargo capacity and up to 330 miles of range, the Model Y is ready for any adventure.

The Model Y is a great introduction to the world of EVs, especially if Tesla manages to meet the restrictions to qualify for the EV tax credit. Just like the Model 3, the Model Y is also one of the safest cars on the road. So, you can rest assured that your new EV will keep you safe on your daily commute.

4. Ford F-150 Lightning

2022 Ford F-150 Lightning in the snow
Image Credit: Ford

The Ford F-150 is one of the most popular vehicle models in automobile history. Most people are familiar with this super popular truck, and chances are you’ve either owned one or at least know someone that’s owned an F-150.

That’s the great thing about the F-150 Lightning. It builds on the brand recognition the conventional F-150 enjoys and adds in the electric powertrain. Ford’s approach to the F-150 Lightning is conservative. Ford doen’t want to mess with a formula that works, and the result is one of the best EV pickup trucks available.

This is smart because some people want an EV that’s very conventionally styled and doesn’t scream electric vehicle. For this crowd, the F-150 Lightning is the perfect fit. This truck looks like any ol’ Ford truck, and the functionality is also there. The F-150 Lightning has one of the best onboard power generators on the market, if not the best.

You can even power your power tools using the F-150 Lightning. Towing is also excellent at a max rating of 7,700 lbs. Coupled with the instant torque afforded by electric motors, the F-150 Lightning is a beast of a work truck. The great thing is that it’s still just an F-150, which is exactly what many people want.

5. VW ID.4

ID.4 in blue
Image Credit: Volkswagen

The Volkswagen ID.4 is a great Tesla Model Y alternative, especially if you don’t want to pay the $67,990 starting price for the Model Y. The ID.4 starts at $37,495, which is quite reasonable in the world of electric SUVs.

It’s also assembled in the USA, in Volkswagen’s Chattanooga plant in Tennessee. Volkswagen’s electric SUV is a great introduction to the world of EVs, especially if you need a family hauler that won’t break the bank.

The ID.4 offers plenty of cargo capacity and a range of 275 miles for the RWD 82 kWh model. The VW ID.4 also includes an amazing three years of free charging via the Electrify America network.

Free charging is only for the first 30 minutes, but it still makes for an amazing deal when considering how expensive EV charging has become. The ID.4 also has very conservative styling, it doesn’t have the stereotypical EV shape, which is definitely a positive for many buyers.

Electric Vehicle Ownership Is Becoming Simpler Every Day

Owning an electric vehicle used to be less convenient than driving a gasoline-powered car. That’s all in the past, though, and the new crop of EVs underscores this more than ever.

You can now purchase a new EV that doesn’t have the problem of limited range at a relatively affordable price. As if that wasn’t enough, charging networks are becoming more robust than ever before, opening up long highway travel to more and more EV owners. Now is the perfect time to jump into the world of first-time EV ownership.


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