Sick and tired of all these electric vehicle production delays? Need an electric car now? Got at least $10,000 burning a hole in your pocket? Well, don’t worry, there are several models available for purchase right this instant! But while all of these electric options have zippy accelerations, the four-wheeled options all top out at 25 mph because they’re classified as neighborhood electric vehicles, not full-on cars. Bummer. And the two three-wheelers, meanwhile, are technically motorcycles, with the ability to cruise along the highway at speeds over 40 mph. Well, it’s a start.
Dynasty: Unlike many of the other current electric offerings, Dynasty’s IT Sedan has four tires and four seats. The car only weighs 1,450 lbs., but Dynasty says it can haul over 1,000 lbs. worth of passengers and gear and unburdened, gets a range of 30 miles. Its recharge time, however, is long, at 11.5 hours. Dynasty offers a variety of models, including a pickup, a van and a sporty drop-top. Prices for current models are just under $20,000, but Dynasty has recently suspended production while they move their manufacturing to Asia; they plan to offer the vehicles again next year at a cost of around $14,000. Don’t worry, many dealers still have models in stock.
ZENN: An acronym for “Zero Emissions, No Noise,” ZENN gets 30-50 miles per charge and takes 8 hours for a full charge or just 4 hours for an 80 percent charge. It sports just two seats and has 13 cubic feet of storage in back. With 34 dealers around the country you should be able to check one out near you; prices start at $15,995 — higher if you want the fancy sunroof. ZENN is also working with ultracapacitor maker EEStor to bring a highway-capable electric car to the market by the fall of 2009.
Kurrent: The two-seater Kurrent, which its makers claim costs less than 2 cents per mile to operate, sports a full windshield, doors and windows to protect you from the elements, as well as a “roomy” trunk with 7.5 cubic feet of space. Charge time is 8 hours and will get you 35 to 40 miles. With a sticker price of $9,800, the Kurrent might be a cheap option to trundle you and your briefcase to and from the train station. You can order one online or get one through a dealership, though the bricks-and-mortar option will likely lift the price tag by a few thousand dollars.
E-Ride: If you’re looking for utility in your eletric vehicle, the EVX series should do the trick. Headquartered in Princeton, Minn., E-Ride has two models, the EXV2 and EXV4. Each one weighs a beefy 3,000 pounds but still gets a decent range of 55 miles per charge. Its base price is $22,000, but will go higher with options such as storage racks, ladder hooks and other utility features.
Meyers Motor: Meyers Motors’ NmG, or “No More Gas,” is for those who fly solo on their commutes. With only one seat and three wheels, the NmG is registered as a motorcycle, which means you can park it like a motorcycle. But it does have a fully enclosed cab and even has a trunk with 6 cubic feet of storage, about one grocery cart’s worth. The vehicle can get up to a potentially terrifying 60 mph in just 12.5 seconds, the company says, and has a 30-mile range per charge. At $34,900 it’s one of the pricier options.
ZAP: Zap’s Xebra is one of the oldest electric car-like options, originally unveiled back in 2005. It’s technically a motorcycle with three wheels, but has four doors and room for four very skinny passengers (max. payload is 303 lbs., or 75 lbs. per passenger). But with a range of only 25 miles per charge, you won’t get far. At $11,200, it’s an affordable option and ZAP is currently running a promotion in which they’ll kick in the first year of electricity for your car.