The electric revolution is picking up pace so quickly it’s about to break out into a full-blown sprint. We’ve counted almost 50 EVs that will be on sale or unveiled over the next couple of years, and have grouped them together into market segments to make more sense of the barrage.
This week, we’re looking at electric sedans. Crossovers and SUVs might be stealing traditional four-door cars’ lunch money, but we’ve still come up with nine electric sedans you need to know about if you like the idea of an old-school three-box layout stuffed full of new-school electric power.
If new EVs from old-money premium brands like Porsche and Audi aren’t enough to worry Tesla, the Lucid Air should definitely be cause for concern. The luxury sedan’s launch has been knocked back to later in 2021 due to COVID-related supply issues, but when it does arrive it’ll be powered by 1080 hp of electric muscle that will rocket it to 60mph in 2.5 seconds and down a quarter mile in less than 10.
Choose the extended range battery pack and you can do 517 miles on a charge – the kind of range you’d expect from a diesel, never mind a gasoline car. There’s a price for all this performance, though: the supercar-crushing Dream Edition launch model will set you back $169,000. But come 2022 you’ll be able to buy a slower, saner, less luxurious Air for under $80,000.
BMW’s next-in-line i-car has its crosshairs set on Tesla’s Model 3. Full technical details won’t be revealed until it lands in showrooms right at the end of 2021, or very early 2022, but we do know that i4 has an 80kWh battery that gives it a range of around 300 miles on the EPA cycle.
Like a 3-series, the silent sedan will come with a choice of powertrains, the most powerful of which will whip up 523 hp and enable it to hit 62 mph in 4 seconds.
The Porsche Taycan’s slightly less sporty sister arrives in showrooms in late spring 2021 priced at $100,945 (£79,0000) for the base GT, and $140,945 (£110,235) for the RS, which, unusually for Audi, is being launched at the same time.
Even the standard car has 522 hp and can hit 62mph in 4.1 seconds, but the RS pushes that power figure to 637 hp and drops the zero to 62mph time to 3.3 seconds. That’s not quite as quick as a Tesla Model S, which also offers a longer driving range, but the e-tron feels more luxurious.
Chinese EV startup Byton has had a tough time lately following a promising launch. The company shuttered operations for six months last year but a $200 million of investment from Foxconn means we might actually get to see the much-delayed M-byte crossover with its gigantic 48inch touchscreen on the road in 2021.
However, that means its K-Byte sedan brother, shown in concept back in 2018 and aimed at the Tesla Model S, probably won’t see daylight until 2023.
Another EV with a digital dashboard wider than your TV is Cadillac’s Celestiq. This is the flagship sedan sister to Cadillac’s upcoming Lyriq SUV (pictured above), although technically it’s a hatchback, not a sedan.
The four-wheel drive, four-wheel steer EV will be built by hand and could feature a smart glass roof divided into four dimmable sections. Don’t go rushing down to your dealer just yet because the Celestiq is still some years from launch. Cadillac says it’ll be here after the 2022 Lyriq – but at this year’s CES show we did get a teaser for what’s in store when it does land.
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We’ve already seen, and fallen for, the first car from Hyundai’s Ioniq EV brand, the 5 crossover. That goes on sale later in 2021, but in 2022 it’ll be joined by the Ioniq 6 sedan, again based on Kia and Hyundai’s E-GMP electric platform.
We don’t yet know exactly how it will look, but if it looks anything like the Prophecy concept that inspired it (pictured), it’s sure to be a winner.
Here to make sure the Lucid Air doesn’t get things its own way is the Mercedes-Benz EQS. The EQS is Merc’s EV alternative to the new S-class sedan, and while it can’t match the Lucid’s power or driving range, it can still cover an impressive 478 miles between charges. That’s according to the European WLTP test, but even the EPA’s tougher protocol is likely to deliver a 400-mile range.
We’ll have to wait until the full reveal on April 15 to see what the EQS looks like on the outside, though we’re hoping for something along the lines of 2019’s Vision EQS concept. Nevertheless, Mercedes has already pulled back the curtain on the stunning interior with its optional triple-display MBUX Hyperscreen dashboard.
Arriving six months after the EQS is its EQE little brother. As the name suggests, it’s an E-class-sized EV sedan, though Mercedes says that the packaging benefits of the electric platform mean it’s as roomy as an S-class inside.
Like the EQS, it uses Merc’s EVA electric platform, but the E is a traditional sedan, whereas the S is an Audi A7-style liftback. Expect twin motors to drive all four wheels and a driving range of over 400 miles, plus the EQS’s impressive Hyperscreen display option.
And finally we come to the car that’s been defining and redefining our EV performance expectations for almost a decade. The big news for the Model S, besides a new weird yoke steering wheel and moving the gearshifter to the touchscreen, is the 200 mph Model S Plaid – plaid being a reference to a line in Mel Brooks’ 1987 sci-fi comedy Spaceballs.
Three motors send a combined 1006 hp to all four corners, enabling the $112,990 (£110,980) Plaid to reach 62 mph in an obscene 1.99 seconds, making it faster than any other production car on the planet.
And if you go for the $142,990 (£139,980) Plaid+, Tesla says improved battery tech increases the driving range from 390 miles to more than 520.