When we talk about the benefits of fully electric vehicles, we often focus on things like zero emissions, energy efficiency, incredible performance and acceleration. But one of the biggest advantages of electric cars is actually something much less glamorous, but much more practical.
When you look at the design of most fully electric cars from the outside, you can hardly tell the difference between the battery-powered and petrol-powered versions. Under the body, however, things are rather different.
Electric cars are built like skateboards. With all of the motors, batteries and electronics packed into the floor space between the front and rear wheels. All of the space on top of this vehicle base is basically up for grabs. This means that electric cars can be much more generous in terms of both the space that is afforded to passengers as well as luggage.
Here are some of the best electric cars on the market today in terms of cargo space.
Tesla Model X
We might as well start with the granddaddy of electric cars, Tesla. The Model X, Tesla’s SUV all-wheel-drive model, offers unprecedented space inside for both driver and passengers. It can seat up to seven adults, but all of those seats can fold flat for maximum cargo space. It also comes with Falcon Wing Doors, that open upwards to provide even easier access for large items.
Total cargo space comes in at a massive 2492 liters (88 cubic feet). I could move apartments in this thing. When was the last time you went from zero to 60 mph in 2.7 seconds, with a sofa in the boot?
Tesla Model S
As well as offering impressive range, even the smaller Model S is rather spacious with more room for your luggage or shopping than you’d get in even an upmarket petrol or diesel estate car from one of the big European manufacturers.
Cargo space comes in at a total of 849 liters (30 cubic feet) - 150 liters of which is located in the front of the car where the engine would usually be. Traveling as a two? You can also fold down the rear seats to take your cargo space up to a massive 1,769 liters. That’s a whole lot of luggage.
Perhaps the best-looking all-electric car you can buy today (but this could be my British bias at play), the Jaguar I-Pace, is also fit for family outings. There are three models of I-Pace, the S, SE and HSE. Although they vary in terms of range and specs, the cargo space is the same in all three models.
As for the magic number? Boot volume comes in at a maximum of 656 liters (23 cubic feet). Jaguar does say that the boot volume is reduced to 638 liters when customers opt to have Active Air Suspension fitted, however.
Hyundai Kona Electric
If you don’t want to spend Tesla or Jaguar money but still need a spacious all-electric vehicle, the Hyundai Kona Electric could be the pick for you. The petrol version of this car has a reputation for having plenty of cargo space, so you’d expect the electric version to match it - and it does.
The Kona Electric also comes in three models but like the Jags, the differentials are more about the finish and features of the models, the size of each is the same. With the Hyundai, you are looking at a total cargo space of 1373 liters (45.8 cubic feet), but that’s with the rear seats down. With the rear seats up, you’ll have to settle for 544 liters of cargo space.
The Kia E-Niro launched late last year and, from the outside at least, looks like a pretty roomy SUV style electric vehicle. You’d be correct, kind of, in that assumption. There is plenty of space inside for those who have come along for the ride, and its crossover design makes it feel more spacious than it actually is.
In terms of cargo space, the Kia e-Niro comes in at a maximum of 1405 liters (49.6 cubic feet). Again, that is with seats folded down. The regular boot volume with all the seats in place is 451 liters. That’s not bad, but it’s not exactly Tesla-esque.
How important is cargo space to you when it comes to buying a vehicle? Is this hidden benefit of electric cars underplayed? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.