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These are the top 5 best-selling electric cars on Europe’s roads in 2023

The Tesla Model Y is the best selling EV in Europe so far this year.
The Tesla Model Y is the best selling EV in Europe so far this year. Copyright Tesla
Copyright Tesla
By Geraldine Herbert
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EVs have accounted for more than 13 per cent of Europe's car sales so far this year. These are the models topping the best-selling rankings to date.

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Electric car sales are rising fast and battery-powered vehicles now account for more than 13.4 per cent of new car sales across Europe, according to figures from the first quarter of this year.

The Tesla Model Y was not only the best-selling electric car in March, but it was also the best-selling car in Europe over the same period.

According to market insights from JATO Dynamics, March marks the first time that the electric SUV has topped the year-to-date ranking and Tesla sales accounted for 22 per cent of all battery electric vehicle registrations for Q1.

Tesla is not the only dominant force in the market, however. These are the five best-selling all-electric cars in Europe so far this year.

5. Dacia Spring

Dacia
The Dacia Spring EV - the fifth best-selling electric car in Europe in Q1 2023.Dacia

Roughly the same size as the Volkswagen Up, the Spring was the first 100 per cent electric car from Dacia, Renault’s budget brand and is one of Europe's cheapest EVs.

Launched in left-hand drive only in March 2020, the five-door city car can run on a single charge for more than 200 km and fit four adults in comfort.

With rugged looks outside, inside it is bright and airy with plenty of clever storage options and the boot can hold 290 litres of luggage.

The 26.8 kWh battery and diminutive dimensions mean it's ideally suited to the city but venture further and it will happily negotiate motorways.

But the Spring is not without its flaws and the car's one-star rating in the EuroNCAP crash tests may be a deal breaker for some. Offering simple yet practical zero-emission motoring at a bargain price it's easy to see the appeal.

Price: €22,750 (DE), €20,800 (FR), €20,555 (ES)

Battery size: 26.8 kWh

Range: 230 km

Maximum Charge Rate: 30 kW

4. Volkswagen ID.4

ingo barenschee /Volkswagen AG
The Volkswagen ID.4.ingo barenschee /Volkswagen AG

When Volkswagen first introduced the ID.4, many struggled to see the point given just how good an all-around car its sibling the ID.3 was.

But over time, strong sales of both cars have proved many wrong, and this smart and comfortable crossover has become a popular family car.

Despite sharing a wheelbase with the ID.3, inside it's surprisingly spacious and there is plenty of room front and back, plus a good-sized boot that can swallow 543 litres.

It also shares the same understated dash of the ID.3. Buyers can choose between rear or all-wheel drive along with 52 or 77kWh battery variants. There’s even a Gti equivalent called the ID.4 GTX. Range varies from 353 to 525 km depending on the model you choose.

On the road, it's not the most memorable to drive but it offers family-friendly practicality and a decent range at an affordable price.

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Price: £38,845 (UK), €40,335 (DE), €44,000 (FR)

Battery size: 52 kWh - 77 kWh

Range: 353 – 525 km

Maximum Charge Rate: 125 kW

3. Volkswagen ID.3

Martin Meiners/Volkswagen AG
The Volkswagen ID.3.Martin Meiners/Volkswagen AG

The ID.3 was the first in a family of ID-badged, next-generation electric cars from Volkswagen, and was probably the most important car the company had launched since the Golf in 1974.

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Once behind the wheel, it's all very clean and hi-tech but the lack of physical buttons on the dashboard won’t appeal to all buyers. Front and back, there is plenty of room and an abundance of storage space.

The boot space of 385 litres only adds to its practicality. On the road, it's refined and balanced and the ID.3's 58kWh battery is good for a range of about 418 km. The ID.3 is a decent family hatchback that is roomy, well-equipped and easy to drive.

A facelifted version is on the way with improved interior quality and usability though exterior changes are limited.

Price: £39,425 (UK), €39,995 (DE), €42,990 (FR)

Battery size: 58 kWh - 77 kWh

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Range: 418 – 546 km

Maximum Charge Rate: 125 kW

2. Tesla Model 3

Tesla
The Tesla Model 3.Tesla

At a time when there is a Tesla-related news event nearly every day, from plunging share prices to safety recalls, it’s easy to lose sight of what the carmaker’s core mission is - to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy and arguably their most important vehicle to achieve this is the Model 3.

Inside the spartan and futuristic interior is a single "tablet" type screen at the centre of the dash that houses all of the essential information and makes the need for physical controls redundant.

There is also a host of technology onboard, including Tesla's Autopilot system designed to assist you with the most burdensome parts of driving. On the road, it is spirited, silent and surprisingly fast. Reassuringly, it comes with a Euro NCAP 5-star safety rating in every category, including pedestrian protection.

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The Model 3 has an official range of up to 580 km depending on your battery choice which should soothe any range anxiety. The smallest and most affordable Tesla marries performance, comfort and value for money in a compelling package. Is it any wonder that the Model 3 seems to be everywhere?

Price: €41,990 (FR), €43,990 (DE), €45,970 (BE)

Battery size: 55 kWh - 77 kWh

Range: 491 – 601 km

Maximum Charge Rate: 240 kW

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1. Tesla Model Y

Tesla
The Tesla Model Y.Tesla

Step inside the Tesla Model Y and you find a spacious, but minimalist interior that won’t be to everyone’s taste, but overall it’s a very practical car that will comfortably carry four adults, while 854 litres of boot space means no compromising on luggage.

The 15-inch touchscreen seamlessly integrates media, cameras, navigation, communications and cabin controls all into one interface along with Tesla’s Autopilot, an adaptive cruise-control system, making it akin to a driveable smartphone.

Range depends on which model you choose, but the minimum range offered is 455 km on a single charge; the maximum means you will travel up to 533 km before you’ll need to plug it in.

On the road, it impresses, it's fast, and is good to drive with sharp handling. Available in three versions, rear-wheel drive, all-wheel drive long range and AWD performance, the Model Y offers a practical family car with a very impressive range that is fun to drive.

Price: €44,990 (FR), €44,890 (DE), €47,970 (BE)

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Battery size: 55 kWh – 75 kWh

Range: 455 – 533 km

Maximum Charge Rate: 250 kW

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