Three of the coolest new electric cars on the market
When it comes to the world of EVs there are a couple of popular names that jump to mind straight away. We’ve all heard of the Teslas and the Polestars, but there are some new kids on the block (and some familiar names getting into EVs) that are taking the electric world by storm. Let’s take a look at three of the coolest new EVs on the market right now.
ORA Funky Cat
Our verdict: The Funky Cat gives drivers loads of tech in a compact package, and it definitely lives up to its name with its unique look and premium interior.
ORA is a pure electric Chinese manufacturer that’s part of Great Wall Motors, or GWM Group. ORA has just launched in the UK and Europe.
The Funky Cat was the first car launched by ORA in 2022, and we expect to see another model make its way to market before the end of 2023. The Funky Cat is a big family hatchback that boasts a premium interior made from top end materials. This is often a nice surprise for our customers, who tell us that they don’t expect the interior to be as luxurious as it is for its modest price point. This spacious vehicle is the ideal size for a runaround, and doesn’t have a standard sloping car roof, so there’s plenty of headroom in this car for both the driver and backseat passengers.
The car is full of tech, with voice control activating the car. Just say ‘Hello ORA’ and a little emoji will pop up on the dash to take your command. You can even personalise the voice command. Instead of saying ‘Hello ORA’ you say the name of your car and it speaks back to you. The car also has facial recognition and automatically adapts to each driver's preferences.
It’s got a low price point too, with our prices starting around £423 a month for a personal lease. Or find out how much you could save by getting a Funky Cat as a benefit through your employer compared to a petrol or diesel equivalent car lease with our EV savings calculator. Plus, you can get it with our speedier delivery, so it’ll be on your driveway in just a few weeks.
Want to take a Funky Cat for a spin? You can book a test drive through your nearest dealership by filling out this form. Just choose from Glasgow, Wolverhampton, Braintree, Bristol, Belfast, Chorley, or Exeter. You can even book an extended test drive and take the car home to experience all it has to offer in your own time.
BYD Atto 3
Our verdict: The perfect urban runaround, drivers will enjoy the quirky design and intuitive tech of the Atto 3.
BYD stands for ‘Build Your Dreams’, and they’re the biggest EV manufacturer in China. In 2022, BYD sold more plug-in cars than Tesla, and was responsible for 30% of all new EV sales in China alone. BYD started out as a battery manufacturer providing 50% of the global batteries on the market, from mobile phones to laptops. So there’s a 1 in 2 chance the battery in the device you’re reading this on is made by BYD.
Outside of China, BYD first ventured into Australia before launching in the UK and Europe. The Atto 3 is their first electric vehicle offering, launching in the UK in 2023. In China, the same model is called the Yuan Plus and comes with built-in karaoke as standard. The Atto 3 in the UK doesn’t have the same karaoke function (sadly!), but it does come with the patented BYD blade battery, which is far superior to most of the other car batteries on the market.
The Atto 3’s currently available in two variants - comfort and design, with a more entry level model coming later in the year. The Atto 3 is the first of many they’ll be bringing out, and its closest competitors are the VW ID.3 or Kia Niro EV. BYD has a couple of new models in the pipeline that we can expect to see before the end of 2023. They’ll be releasing the Dolphin this summer, a smaller model similar to the MG4. It’ll be followed later in the year by a bigger saloon or sedan type vehicle, called the Seal, which will take on the likes of the Polestar 2 and Tesla Model 3.
Our verdict: The world's first electric Hyper-SUV won’t disappoint. British heritage meets China’s best build and tech - what’s not to love?
Lotus is the quintessentially British brand that’s associated with sports cars like the Elise and Emira. They were bought recently by the Geely Group and join other brands like the large taxi company LEVC, and Polestar. Their first EV to the market, the Eletre, is British heritage made in China - combining robustness and reliability with high tech to make a spectacular car.
Lotus made a few firsts in 2023 with the Eletre. The Eletre is not only the first EV from Lotus, it’s also the first SUV from the brand and the first car to use completely retractable LiDAR systems. LiDAR stands for ‘Light Detection and Ranging’, and these systems help with autonomous driving and driving aids like self park. The cameras fold out of the rear arch and the roof to help with driver positioning, and they fold away automatically when not in use.
The Eletre is the world's first electric Hyper-SUV, and the closest you can get to a car of this spec in a non-electric car (with a much higher price point) is the Lamborghini Urus. The Eletre will get you from 0-60 in just 2.95 seconds, compared to the Urus which is a little slower off the mark at 0-60 in 3.1 seconds.
With so much innovation happening in the electric car industry, there are plenty of exciting new manufacturers and models being released all the time. Thinking about what EVs are on offer beyond the manufacturers you already know, means you can find the perfect electric car for you. Your next car might just be the coolest EV on the block.
Funky Cat Costings:
Personal Base rental £432.26, initial payment £1,296.78.
(Assumptions based on secured supply, initial rental 3, term 48 months, annual mileage 5,000) Base rental £432.26, initial payment £1,296.78.