The Top 7 Electric Cars of 2013

As gas prices creep up, more people are turning to hybrid and electric cars to reduce their fuel costs. Still, the number of electric cars sold is only a tiny percentage of the overall number of vehicles moving off car lots annually. Recent price wars have helped drive interest and purchases. If you’re ready to put a little more money up front for long-term savings in the years ahead, check out this list of the best electric and hybrid cars to buy this year.

Tesla Model S

Able to recharge anywhere there’s an electrical outlet, the Tesla Model S has gotten rave reviews from both customers and industry experts. This beast can get 62 miles for every one hour of charging time with a high power wall connector. With a one-hour stop at a Supercharge station along an interstate, the Tesla S model is fully charged and ready to go 300 miles. One highlight of this car is its ability to charge with almost any kind of outlet, though the length of time it takes to charge varies. As with most electric and hybrid cars, this model charges faster when plugged into a 240 volt outlet, rather than a 110 volt.

2013 Toyota Prius V

With ample space for people and stuff, this vehicle is a roomier option among electric hybrid cars. This car comes with an electric motor as well as a 1.8 liter four-cylinder engine. When it’s running strictly on electricity, the Prius V tends to run slowly and can handle brief excursions. In the city, this car gets about 44 miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe) and 40 on the highway. Boasting the Toyota branded Hybrid Synergy Drive system, this car has solid fuel-efficient technology.

2014 Ford Fusion Energi

There has been a ton of enthusiasm for the Ford Fusion. The latest model is the 2014 Energi that’s outfitted with a 2 liter Atkinson-cycle I-4 engine, along with an electric motor. When the Titanium model is fully charged and has a full tank of gas, it’s good to go for an estimated 620 miles. Running exclusively on electric power through the lithium-ion battery, the car takes you approximately 21 miles. In terms of mpg, expect to get 44 in cities and 41 on interstates. Using a 240-volt outlet, the vehicle recharges fully in about three hours.

2013 Nissan Leaf

This vehicle is not a hybrid. It runs entirely on electricity. A lithium-ion 24 kWh battery is the power source for the motor. On a single charge, this car has a range of 73 miles on average. Thanks to a regenerative brake system, the Nissan Leaf collects back some of the energy the motor expends. A dashboard indicator lets you know whether you’re using energy or gaining some part of it back. The Leaf’s innovative features are sure to make an impact on new cars in the sustainable market for years to come.

2013 Honda Fit

A compact wonder that runs exclusively on electricity, the Honda Fit has a driving range rating from the Environmental Protection Agency of 82 miles. Achieve a fully charged battery in just three hours using a 240-volt outlet. Enjoy the benefits of having a remote control for initiating or pausing a charge. A 20 kWh lithium-ion battery harnesses electrical power to make this emission-less car go. Honda touts the benefits of this particular battery, saying it functions in a broad range of climates, charges faster, and offers double the charge cycles of other batteries.

2013 Mitsubishi MiEV

Offering a whopping 112 MPGe, car buyers enjoy the efficiency and compact size of this vehicle. Choose between three driving modes, including regenerative braking, for a maximum range of up to 62 miles. The lithium-ion battery for the Mitsubishi MiEV is under warranty for eight years, and can recharge three different ways-with a standard plug-in, at a home dock, or at a public charging station. The home charging station gives the battery a full charge in about seven hours, while plugging into a standard outlet requires 22 hours to gain a full battery. Drivers can take advantage of public quick charger ports and get 80% battery life in as little as 30 minutes.

2014 Audi A3 E-Tron

Operating as a plug-in hybrid, the 2014 Audi A3 e-tron has a 1.4-liter turbocharged gasoline engine with four cylinders. Complementing the engine is an electric motor. The range for this vehicle using gas and electric power is about 460 miles, and it has a fast pick-up, going from zero to 62 MPG in just over seven seconds.

Which electric and hybrid cars have the features you want in your next vehicle?