In just over a decade, electric cars have gone from being boring machines with an obnoxiously bad driving range and performance that can put you to sleep with extreme boredom to highly desirable cars that can out-accelerate the best of the best supercars powered by internal combustion engines. Most modern electric cars are capable of accelerating off the line quickly enough to make your face bend. Gone are those days when drag-strips were ruled by big, burly muscle cars with fire-spewing engines. The internet is full of videos of where family electric cars like the Tesla Model S can be seen dominating quarter-mile sprints with just a faint sound made by the electric motors. We have curated a list of the top 10 quickest as well as fastest electric cars. The names included in the list are either currently on sale or are expected to hit the market by the end of 2021.
10. Jaguar I-Pace – 0-60mph: 4.3 sec – Top speed: 124mph
Jaguar recently announced that it will be all-electric by 2025, completely ditching combustion engines in the next four years. But it all started with the I-Pace model, which was the first battery-electric car by the British luxury automaker. Introduced in 2018, it was hyped as the first true rival to Tesla’s absolute dominance in the EV segment. Designed by celebrated automobile designer Ian Callum, the Jaguar I-Pace is widely considered one of the best-looking electric cars on sale. It is touted as the most highly decorated production car in modern history, winning 62 international awards in its first year.
Contract manufacturer Magna Steyr builds the I-Pace in Graz, Austria. It has a 90 kWh lithium-ion battery that offers an EPA-rated range of 234 miles and can charge from 0 to 80 percent in 45 minutes using a 100 kW charger. Powering the compact SUV are two concentric electric motors, one on each axle for permanent four-wheel drive. The two motors cumulatively produce 395hp and a peak torque of 516 lb-ft, which is enough to propel the SUV that weighs 4,702 pounds to 60mph from zero in just 4.3 seconds. That’s properly quick for a car of its size. But not Tesla quick, which has proved to be its Achilles heel.
9. Polestar 2 – 0-60mph: 4.1 sec – Top speed: 125mph
Unveiled at the 2019 Geneva Motor Show, the Polestar 2 followed in the footsteps of the plug-in hybrid Polestar 1 to become the second offering from Volvo’s snip-off brand. Once the Swedish manufacturer’s performance division, Polestar has now reinvented itself as a standalone brand focusing on electric mobility. But unlike Polestar 1, which is a hybrid, the Polestar 2 is an all-electric model that uses the same CMA platform used by other battery-electric cars by its parent company Geely, including Volvo XC40 and Lynk & Co 01. In terms of looks, it features Volvo’s distinct design language and follows the Swedish brand’s famous minimalist approach. However, the Polestar 2 has a strange tall-body look that looks like a hybrid between a compact SUV and a sedan. The raised body accommodates the battery on the floor.
Like the I-Pace, the Polestar 2 has two electric motors, one upfront and another outback, which provides an all-wheel drive. Cumulatively, 402 horsepower and 487 lb-ft of torque give it a 0-60mph time of 4.1 seconds. It uses a 78.0-kWh lithium-ion battery pack that can charge to 80 percent in 40 minutes and has an EPA-rated driving range of 233 miles. Interestingly, Polestar offers a performance package for the EV, which adds Öhlins dampers, bigger 20-inch forged wheels, and Brembo brakes with gold-colored calipers.
8. Audi RS E-tron GT – 0-60mph: 3.1 sec – Top Speed: 155mph
Audi recently revealed its striking four-door electric sports sedan called E-tron GT which shares most of its underpinnings with the Porsche Taycan, including the cutting-edge 800-volt architecture. Despite the fact that it shares much of its hardware with Porsche’s electric offering, the E-tron GT is distinctly Audi-like in character with chiseled bodywork and sharp creases. The Audi E-tron GT has been launched in two variants with the range-topping RS model packing more performance.
The base E-Tron GT and the RS E-Tron GT both get the same dual-motor setup with an all-wheel-drive that’s powered by a 93kWh battery pack. However, the RS version gets 590 horsepower on tap, which can be temporarily increased to 637 horsepower with the boost mode. Audi claims the RS E-Tron GT can accelerate from zero to 60mph in 3.1 seconds, while the top speed is limited to 155mph. The range-topping variant is said to have a driving range of 232 miles.
7. Tesla Model 3 Performance – 0-60mph: 3.1 sec – Top speed: 162mph
The Tesla Model 3 is one of the most important automobiles of the 21st century. While Model S turned Tesla into a juggernaut that disrupted the whole automobile industry, the more modest Model 3 gave the American company its household name status. It was Tesla’s long-demanded affordable entry-level car that was meant to cement the dominance of Tesla in the EV segment. Unveiled in 2016, the Model 3 has been a runaway success for Tesla. Since early 2020, the Tesla Model 3 is the world’s best-selling electric car in history, and the company had managed to sell more than 800,000 units by December 2020. The electric four-door sedan borrows styling cues from Tesla’s Model S sedan but has a lower drag coefficient. The Model 3 is sold in different trims levels, and the range-topping Performance variant is the quickest of the lot.
The Model 3 Performance has a floor-mounted 80.5-kWh lithium-ion battery pack that powers two electric motors, which give it an all-wheel drive. The dual-motor set-up has a cumulative output of 450 ponies, but dyno tests conducted by independent sources have claimed that the variant produces more than 500 horsepower. As a result, the Model 3 is supercar quick with a 0-60mph time of 3.1 seconds and a top speed of 162mph. It also an impressive EPA-rated driving range of 315 miles.
6. Tesla Model X Plaid – 0-60mph: 2.5 sec – Top speed: 163mph
The Tesla Model X is not only the quickest SUV money can buy but can also out-accelerate most supercars. The Model X is based on the same platform used by the Tesla Model S, sharing as much as 30 percent of the components with the full-size sedan. While its optional third row of seats makes it one of the most practical electric cars on sale, things like its top-hinged falcon rear doors, celebration mode, and surprisingly nimble handling make it anything but a boring family car. For 2021, Tesla updated the electric SUV with plenty of hardware and design changes. More importantly, it introduced the Plaid trim that replaces the Performance variant as the range’s quickest variant.
There’s no information on the battery capacity on the updated Model X, but Tesla says the facelift model arrives with new battery technology for improved range and efficiency. The Plaid trim is said to have an EPA-rated range of 340 miles. The Plaid model packs three electric motors instead of two, which gives the massive SUV supercar-shaming performance figures. The three motors combined produce 1020hp, propelling the Model X from 0 to 60mph in just 2.5 seconds.
5. Porsche Taycan Turbo S – 0-60mph: 2.4 sec – Top speed: 162mph
The Porsche Taycan is the only series-production car currently on sale that has challenged Tesla’s outright performance. However, Porsche is not exactly a direct competitor to the Model S. The Taycan is more like a Porsche 911 with an electric power plant and more space inside the cabin. Revealed as a concept in 2015, the fully production-ready Taycan debuted at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show. Just like all other Porsche cars, the Taycan distinctly borrows styling cues from the 911. The Taycan Turbo has a drag coefficient of Cd=0.22 – the lowest of any current Porsche model. Despite its steep pricing, Porsche sold more than 20,000 Taycans in 2020, representing 7.4% of the German automaker’s total volume.
The range-topping Turbo S trim is the quickest in the Taycan range. Porsche developed an 800-volt charging system specifically for the electric sports car, which helps refill its 93.4-kWh battery from 5 to 80 percent in just 22 minutes using a DC fast charger. The Turbo S uses a dual-motor setup that gives it an all-wheel-drive and cumulatively produces 750hp and 774 lb-ft of torque. The Taycan is also the first EV to feature a multispeed transmission. The first gear is for quicker acceleration off the line, while the second gear is for top speed and efficiency, thanks to which the Taycan Turbo S can rocket to 60 mph in 2.4 seconds and hit a top speed of 162mph. However, it has a rather disappointing driving range. The EPA rates the Taycan Turbo S’s range at a dismal 192 miles.
4. Lotus Evija – 0-60mph: under 3 seconds – Top speed: 200mph
The Lotus Evija, pronounced evv-eye-ah, is not Lotus’s first hypercar but also its first electric car. Targeting an output of 1972-hp, the Lotus Evija also wants to be the world’s most powerful hypercar. Revealed in 2019, the electric hypercar is a bold step for the British automaker, which is working on regaining its lost glory under Chinese automaker Geely’s ownership. The Lotus Evija wants to be a lot more than its jaw-dropping output figure. Lotus claims the Evija weighs just over 3700 pounds, making it the lightest EV to enter production. In addition to that, the electric hypercar takes just 12 minutes for an 80 percent charge and only 18 minutes for a full charge. Impressive! The Evija is also one of the most radical electric cars in terms of looks.
The battery pack powering the electric hypercar has 70.0 kilowatt-hours mounted in the middle like mid-engine supercars. Four electric motors are powering each wheel, giving it an all-wheel drive and torque vectoring. The hypercar is still completing its final tests and is due to be out at the end of this year, but Lotus claims that it will accelerate from zero to 60mph in less than 3 seconds and reach a top speed of 200mph. However, it could very well be the fastest EV on the planet, given its horsepower figure and its relatively lightweight.
3. Tesla Model S Plaid Plus 0-60mph: under 3 seconds – Top speed: 200mph
The Tesla Model S needs no introduction; it is often compared with the Ford Model T for being an instrument that decisively changed the course of automotive history. Even though the Model S is almost a decade old, it continues to be the undisputed king of electric cars and a benchmark for all its competitors. Like the Model X, Tesla updated the Model S for 2021, giving it the first major facelift since its debut in 2012. At the top of the range will be the Model S Plaid Plus variant that promises to be the quickest and possibly the fastest series-production car ever. Elon Musk, Tesla’s CEO, has already claimed the Model S Plaid to be the company’s “best car ever.”
Like the Tesla Model X Plaid, the Model S Plaid Plus uses a three-motor set-up to offer an all-wheel drive. However, the Plaid Plus trim, exclusive to the Model S, gets a total output of 1100hp. The performance figures are staggering. Tesla claims the Plaid Plus has a zero to 60 time of less than two seconds, a quarter-mile comes in less than nine seconds, and the electric sedan can reach a top speed of 200 mph. To destroy its competition, Tesla further claims a range of 520 miles for the Most S Plaid Plus.
2. Pininfarina Battista – 0-60mph: under 2 seconds – Top Speed: 218mph
In 2019, Italy’s most famous automotive design house Pininfarina finally took the leap to become an automobile manufacturer by showcasing its first-ever production car – the Pininfarina Battista. Named after the company’s founder, Battista Farina, the electric car is touted as the most powerful road-legal car ever to come out of Italy. The Battista shares powertrain tech with the Rimac C_Two, with about 40-50% of the pure technical components in common with the Croatian electric hypercar. However, the Italian brand has always emphasized that electric cars will be very different from each other. Automobili Pininfarina is currently completing the final rounds of tests to fine-tune the electric hypercar ahead of customer deliveries in 2021.
The Battista is powered by a 120 kW-h battery pack supplied by Rimac Automobili. Still, it is uniquely housed behind the occupants and along the sides in a T format, giving the hypercar optimum weight distribution. The Italian hypercar is equipped with four electric motors feeding power and torque to each wheel. Cumulatively, the four motors develop over 1,900 horsepower and 1,700 pound-feet of torque, which is enough to propel the Battista from 0-100km/h (62mph) in under 2 seconds and help it reach a top speed of 218mph. Automobili Pininfarina also claims that the hypercar will have a range of 310 miles, which is very impressive.
1. Rimac C_Two – 0-60mph: 1.88 seconds – Top speed: 258mph
A relatively unknown brand from Croatia named Rimac shot into fame in 2017 when ex-Top Gear presenter Richard Hammond crashed and destroyed its concept one electric supercar while filming for The Grand Tour. Since then, a lot has happened for the tiny automobile manufacturer, allegedly in talks with Porsche to create an electric hypercar for sister brand Bugatti. Rimac unveiled the C_Two concept at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show, and the electric hypercar is currently in the process of homologation for the global market. Derailed by the Covid-19 pandemic, Rimac completed the assembly of six of the eight validation prototypes by the end of last year and promises to start delivering to customers by the end of 2021. In addition to being claimed as the quickest production car globally, Rimac also said that the C_Two would be technologically capable of Level 4 of autonomous driving.
Just like the Pininfarina Battista, the Rimac C_Two uses a 120kWh lithium battery pack and a set of four electric motors powering each wheel, allowing for a four-wheel drive. The electric hypercar is also said to be equipped with a pair of independent single-speed gearboxes to drive the front wheels and a pair of two-speed carbon-clutched gearboxes for the rear wheels. With a whopping 1888hp on tap, the C_Two has a claimed 0-60mph time of 1.85sec and a top speed of 258 miles. If that was not impressive, Rimac says the C-Two will have a range of 400 miles.