28th Dec 2021

The pace of EV development is rapidly increasing. The UK deadline for the end of new ICE-powered car sales in 2030 is now just over eight years away and every car major manufacturer is working fast to produce a line-up of electric vehicles to satisfy growing customer demand.

Tesla has been the market leader for the past few years and the Model 3 was the best-selling car in the UK in November but Elon Musk’s competitors have been busy. Here are six EVs that we’re looking forward to driving in 2021. Who knows – they may even join the EV Hire fleet!

1)       The Audi Q6 e-tron

The new sporty Audi Q6 e-tron has been seen testing recently and shares many styling cues with the e-tron GT and the Q4 e-tron. The car usilises the group’s new Premium Platform Electric (PPE) which means that, equipped with a 100kWh battery, we should expect a range of around 300 miles.

The Q6 e-tron should also feature an 800v charging functionality allowing it to charge at speeds of up to 350kW, meaning that an 80% charge can be completed in 20 minutes.

Launch versions are expected to have around 470bhp with later RS versions rumoured to have more than 600bhp.

Electric SUVs are one of the most popular sectors of the market and the Audi Q6 e-tron will be competing with the market-leading Tesla Model X and newcomers such as the Rivian R1S. As the overall market moves to EVs, Audi should have a winner on its hands in the Q6 e-tron.

2)       Hyundai Ioniq 6

South Korea’s Hyundai entered the EV market with the Ioniq and then developed an even more attractive package with the Ioniq 5.

Hyundai’s next venture into electrification will be the Ioniq 6, a saloon car looking to compete with the Tesla Model 3. The Ioniq 6 will share a number of components with the previous model and will have a range of about 300 miles. Both the Ioniq 5 and 6 use Hyundai’s E-GMP platform which will allow for rapid charging.

With an estimated entry-level price of less than £45,000, the Hyundai Ioniq 5 will be one to watch when it goes on sale in the UK next year.

3)       Mercedes EQS SUV

Mercedes is working quickly to build an EV range that will cater to its large and loyal customer base. The EQS, pictured above in its Maybach variant, is expected to compete with the BMW X7 and Range Rover when it goes on sale in 2022.

The EQS SUV will represent the pinnacle of Mercedes’ technical design ability. The largest battery pack, forecast to be 107.8kWh should provide up to 516bhp with a top speed of 130 mph.

The interior will feature the MBUX Hyperscreen, an optional digital dashboard that stretches the entire width of the vehicle and presents three OLED screens to the driver, centre console and passenger. Rear seat passengers also benefit from the High-End Rear Seat Entertainment Plus package.

The SUV market is one of the most competitive, and profitable, for manufacturers so expect the launch of the EQS SUV to set the standard.

4)       Polestar 3

Following on with the theme of the SUV, Polestar will be launching its all-electric utility vehicle in 2022 with the Polestar 3. Its recent model, the Polestar 2, has been well received and the 3 will build on that success with a new platform called SPA 2.

Polestar 3 is intended to be a sports SUV and will initially be built in the US for the American market. Chinese factories will then build the Polestar 3 for the domestic market as well as for export to Europe.

Buyers can expect a range of around 310 miles with the Android-based infotainment system, first seen on the Polestar 2, used extensively.

5)       The Toyota bZ4X

Toyota recently announced its plans to develop is EV offerings and has stated its intention to release seven electric cars before 2025.

The bZ4X is an SUV (can you see a trend here?) with AWD capability and a projected range of up to 28o miles.

The design is typically Toyota – conservative with a hint of aggression – and the interior will benefit from a 12” touchscreen and advanced voice recognition and smartphone integration using Toyota Smart Connect.

As the world’s largest automobile manufacturer by volume, Toyota has some catching up to do with electrification but expect to see the bZ4X competitively priced and a popular choice for fans of the Japanese brand.

6)       The Tesla Model Y

As the world-leader in EVs, Tesla has a big reputation to live up to when it launches a new model. However with the success of the Model 3, on which the Model Y is based, we can be sure that its latest offering will be well received.

Using the Model 3 platform, the Model Y has stretched the saloon car variant's dimensions to make it longer, taller and slightly wider.

The Model Y will initially be offered with five seats which may disappoint some potential buyers for whom a seven-seat option version would be ideal. However, extra space, given the stretched dimensions, means that rear-seat passengers get more headroom and legroom and there is increased load capacity with the rear seats folded.

The tech on the Model 3 is unsurpassed currently and the Model Y will be a guaranteed hit when it’s released in the UK, hopefully towards the end of Q1. Given the popularity of the Model 3 and the Model X, EV Hire has the Model Y on order and we expect it to be in high demand when it joins the fleet.

So, there you have it. Six models that we eagerly anticipate in 2022. The EV market is growing rapidly so we can expect even greater innovation and development as we move into the New Year.




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