If you’re in the market for a new car, you have a lot of factors to consider. Buying new vs. buying used, going through a dealership or buying direct from an owner, how much you can spend … not to mention what kind of car you’ll end up with and the features you need.
As you examine your options, don’t rule out electric cars too early. You might be surprised to find that the costs of 100% electric cars are coming down while the convenience of recharging is rising.
The benefits of going electric
While electric cars might not be for everyone, there are many benefits to going electric or at least hybrid. Even though they’re typically more expensive to begin with — although prices are dropping as electric cars become more and more popular — you’ll save money on fuel throughout the life of your car.
Along with fuel efficiency, electric cars perform well, come with long warranties, and are quiet. If you can manage to find a fueling station every 100-200 miles (they’re becoming steadily easier to spot), an electric car could be a smart choice for you.
As electric cars grow ever cheaper to buy, fueling stations easier to find, and the technology becomes more reliable and efficient, you’re more likely to consider owning one.
Here are three of the top electric cars on the market (and of course you can expect to see more in the coming years).
1. Nissan Leaf
If you’re looking for a car to get you to and from work, this would be an excellent choice for you. Save money on the commute by eliminating trips to the gas station with this car, and upgrade it with a 6.6 kW charger to take you longer distances — otherwise, you could get stuck having to make long stops to recharge if you take this one on a trip.
Before federal and state incentives this car will cost around $35,000, but it will save you money on fuel over the lifetime of the car.
2. Honda Fit
If you don’t want to worry about stopping to recharge, the Honda Fit is a good alternative to consider. The technology behind the Honda Fit makes it one of the most efficient cars around.
It might cost you a little more but it will save you time at the charging station. The Honda Fit is fun and sporty-looking car while still being environmentally sensitive.
3. Ford Focus
With this one, you don’t have to sacrifice comfort for fuel efficiency. With four seats, rear-view camera, temperature control, and a great sound system, the Ford Focus electric is an excellent electric car with 110 miles for each full charge.
It might not look like an electric car on the outside, but it certainly delivers under the hood. With this car, Americans are eligible for a federal tax credit of up to $7,500.
Shopping online for the best electric car
No matter what kind of car you get, you’ll want to do your research to make sure that you’re getting the best possible deal while still ending up with a car that meets your needs. You can see what kind of cars are available in your area online, rather than having to go from one car dealership to another.
Typically you’ll find websites with car listings in your town or state. Then you can narrow your search by looking for particular makes and models, like a Ford Focus, or preferred price ranges.