Does Tesla envy have you pining for an affordable electric car? Well, we just happen to have two test cars that we need to sell to make room, and funds, for new cars.
The Mitsubishi i-MiEV is one of the cheapest and most efficient electric cars on the market. The $29,975 starting price still seems rather dear for what little you get. Our top-of-the-line SE cost $33,630 after we added the Premium package, which includes a navigation system and rear backup camera. Sure, range is limited to 59 miles, and the car is a bit basic, but our used example will provide a buyer with an affordable means to own an electric car.
This Ford Focus EV is one of the nicest electric cars we've driven. It has all the underlying Focus qualities: taut handling, good ride, and nicely finished interior. And it also provides the benefits of its electric powertrain: silent running, cheap operation, and effortless-feeling acceleration. We got 3.18 miles per kilowatt hour, or about 107 mpg equivalent. That's a little less than the tiny and underwhelming Mitsubishi i-MiEV, but one better than the Nissan Leaf, the Focus Electric's closest competitor. We consistently found we could go about 80 miles on a charge.
To learn more about electric cars, visit our alternative-fuel car guide.
2012 Mitsubishi i SE
Asking price: $17,000
Approximate miles: 3,000
Asking price: $26,000
Approximate miles: 3,200
The cars have been well cared for, with low miles. The money from the sale of these, and all cars purchased for testing, goes back in our budget for acquiring future test cars. And in case you're wondering, being a non-profit organization, we did not benefit from a tax credit.
If you are interested in these electric cars, you can save significantly over the price as-new and take delivery at the Consumer Reports test track in East Haddam, Connecticut. We'll even give you a tour of the facilities and a few laps on the handling track in your new car. (Learn how Consumer Reports tests cars.)
Serious buyers may contact us for more information and window stickers at crtestcars (at) gmail.com.
—Jeff BartlettMore from Consumer Reports:
2013 New Car Preview
Best and worst used cars
Complete Ratings for 200 cars and trucks
Consumer Reports has no relationship with any advertisers or sponsors on this website. Copyright © 2007-2013 Consumers Union of U.S., Inc. No reproduction, in whole or in part, without written permission.
- electric car