Most Efficient Electric Cars in NZ

An efficient vehicle travels the furthest using the lowest amount of energy.

August 31, 2023       11 min read

Listed in order of most efficient to the least, using the WLTP consumption rating.

Running cost is based on 0.25 cents per kWh electricity price.

VehicleWh / kmRunning cost ($/100km)km / kWh
Hyundai IONIQ 38 kWh138$3.458.1
Hyundai IONIQ 6139$3.488.1
Fiat 500e142$3.558.6
Hyundai Kona 39 kWh143$3.587.8
Hyundai IONIQ 6 77 RWD143$3.587.9
Opel Mokka-e SRi145$3.637.8
Opel Mokka-e Live145$3.637.8
Hyundai Kona 64 kWh147$3.687.6
Tesla Model 3149$3.738.6
Opel Corsa-e SRi152$3.808.3
Peugeot e-208152$3.808.3
BYD Dolphin152$3.807.6
Citroen e-C4153$3.837.8
BYD Atto 3 Extended156$3.906.9
Tesla Model Y157$3.937.6
BYD Atto 3157$3.936.9
Skoda Enyaq 80 Coupe157$3.937.1
BYD Dolphin Extended159$3.987.1
BMW i4 eDrive40160$4.007.3
MG 4 64 Excite160$4.007.2
Hyundai IONIQ 6 77 Elite160$4.007
Tesla Model 3 Long Range160$4.008.4
Subaru Solterra160$4.006.5
Peugeot e-2008161$4.038
Audi Q4 e-tron Sportback 40161$4.037.1
Kia Niro162$4.057.1
Skoda Enyaq 80162$4.056.9
Mercedes-Benz EQE 300164$4.107
Kia EV6 Air Long Range165$4.136.8
Volkswagen ID.5 Pro165$4.136.3
MG 4 Long Range165$4.137.1
Kia EV6 Air Standard Range166$4.156.8
Kia Niro Plus166$4.156.7
MG 4 Essence166$4.157
Polestar 2167$4.187.1
Hyundai IONIQ 5167$4.186.6
BMW iX 50167$4.186
Mercedes-Benz EQB 250167$4.185.6
GWM Ora167$4.186.8
GWM Ora Extended167$4.187.1
Audi Q4 e-tron Sportback 50167$4.186.8
Hyundai IONIQ 5 72 2WD168$4.206.6
SsangYong Korando e-Motion168$4.206.1
Lexus UX 300e168$4.206.2
Volkswagen ID.4 Pro169$4.236.7
Hyundai IONIQ 6 77 Limited169$4.236.7
Cupra Born V+170$4.256.6
Nissan Leaf 40 kWh171$4.286.9
Polestar 2 Long Range171$4.287.3
Tesla Model Y Performance171$4.286.9
Kia EV6 Earth172$4.306.5
Ford Mustang Mach-E RWD172$4.306.3
MG 4 51 Excite172$4.306.9
Mercedes-Benz EQA 350175$4.386.5
Mini Electric176$4.407
MG ZS EV177$4.436.5
MG ZS EV Long Range177$4.436.4
Hyundai IONIQ 5 72 AWD177$4.436.3
Mercedes-Benz EQA 250177$4.436.4
Mercedes-Benz EQE 350178$4.456.5
Subaru Solterra Touring179$4.485.8
Kia EV6 GT-Line180$4.506.3
Hyundai IONIQ 5 77 Elite180$4.506.1
BMW iX1 xDrive30181$4.536.4
Volvo C40 Recharge182$4.556.5
Volvo XC40 Recharge183$4.586.3
Nissan Leaf e+185$4.636.5
Ford Mustang Mach-E AWD187$4.686
BMW i4 eDrive35187$4.686.1
Mercedes-Benz EQB 350188$4.705.4
Mercedes-Benz EQE 350 SUV189$4.736.1
Mercedes-Benz EQE 300 SUV189$4.736.1
Mazda MX-30190$4.756.7
BMW i4 M50190$4.756.3
Hyundai IONIQ 5 77 Limited191$4.785.9
BMW iX 40 Sport193$4.836
Polestar 2 Long Range Dual194$4.856.5
BMW iX3195$4.886.2
Audi Q4 e-tron 40196$4.906.9
BMW i7 xDrive60196$4.906
Audi e-tron GT quattro199$4.985.7
Ford Mustang Mach-E GT200$5.005.4
Audi RS e-tron GT206$5.155.6
Kia EV6 GT206$5.155.5
Volvo C40 Recharge Twin208$5.206
Mercedes-Benz EQS 450 Sedan212$5.305.9
Audi Q4 e-tron 50 quattro213$5.336.7
LDV MIFA 9213$5.334.9
Audi e-tron Sportback216$5.405.2
Mercedes-Benz EQE AMG 53218$5.455.5
Jaguar I-PACE220$5.505.5
Mercedes-Benz EQE AMG 53 SUV221$5.535.4
Audi e-tron 55 quattro222$5.555.1
Mercedes-Benz EQS AMG 53230$5.755.4
Volvo XC40 Recharge Twin238$5.955.8
BMW iX M60247$6.185.4
Porsche Taycan265$6.634.7
LDV eT60268$6.703.8
Audi e-tron S Sportback281$7.034.4
Mercedes-Benz EQV 300291$7.283.8

Help! I’m confused 🤔

* The WLTP is the benchmark for comparing EVs and estimating running costs. It measures recharged electric energy from the mains.

Charging loss: if you’ve ever measured household draw when charging, more electricity leaves your circuit board than goes into the battery.

Power can be lost as heat, and some cars may use power for battery heating or pre-conditioning.

**What is economy?

The vehicle dashboard (or trip computer) shows how much power is consumed from the battery. It knows nothing of the energy lost during charging.

Kilometres per kWh is a useful metric; you can compare your economy over different driving styles, types of journeys, or weather.

How can you get two vehicles with the same WLTP Wh / km but a different economy estimate?

The vehicle that gets more kilometres per kWh on the dashboard must have used less electricity during charging. The economy estimate is based on usable battery (something that is not always published in the manufacturer spec sheet).

How does this compare to Hybrids and Plugin Hybrids?

Consumer NZ did a real-world test.

How electric energy consumption is measured

Efficiency can be expressed in three different ways.

  1. watt-hours (Wh) consumed per kilometre travelled.
  2. kilowatt-hours (kWh) per 100 km travelled.
  3. km / kWh (the number of kilometres travelled per kWh of electricity).

Energy consumption can be measured from the battery or recharged electric energy from the mains.

  1. Battery consumption allows comparison on a drive-by-drive basis (viewed in the dashboard).
  2. Mains consumption is good for comparing running costs as it considers charging losses (measured using special equipment).

Car reviewers routinely mix the two: “The WLTP says 167 Wh / km, but I managed to get 148 Wh / km”.

Unless the reviewer wired up a meter to measure power leaving the mains – they are not comparing the same thing.

How is EV efficiency measured?

The WLTP testing process depletes the battery, then recharges it again (while measuring electricity leaving the mains). Along with other calculations, this process predicts a consumption figure using recharged energy from the mains.

The test cycle also measures electricity consumption from the battery during travel to estimate the EV’s range.

What affects efficiency?

Efficiency is affected by vehicle mass, powertrain, aerodynamic drag, and rolling resistance.

An efficient EV is lighter, has low aerodynamic drag coefficient, and an efficient powertrain that maximises regenerative braking.

Why drive an efficient EV?

  1. Lower running costs – less recharging needed.
  2. Fewer emissions during travel – NZ has around 85% of renewables but still generates electricity from fossil fuel sources.
  3. Fewer emissions during production – inefficient EVs have larger batteries to power larger mass.

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