Top 5 Electric UTV Options of 2018
While there are some driving endeavors where the car just doesn’t cut it, sometimes even the all-terrain vehicle (ATV) may fall short. Sometimes, we need the best of both worlds. We desire the small and compact nature of the ATV, but we enjoy the perks passenger vehicles offer as well. These include things like cargo space, an overhead covering, and a slightly more powerful engine.
The designs of modern utility task vehicles (UTVs) fit this bill. They’re great in a variety of locations including workplaces, golf courses, schools, resorts, and farms. For transporting small amounts of cargo or discreetly driving around the perimeter no matter the terrain, the UTV is a great choice.
But there’s been a new development in the field of UTVs in recent years – now they’re going electric. The UTV, also known as the side-by-side, is different from the ATV in many ways. Now that gap is getting even bigger as more of these vehicles depend on electric components to function. But why the move toward the electric UTV? And what are some of the best options in this class for sale today?
The Move Toward the Electric UTV Explained
For many organizations, their utility vehicles are a big part of their business. It means being able to keep things organized easily. UTVs are also handy for getting around the perimeter of a large complex without having to rely on actual passenger vehicles to do so.
The move toward the electric powertrain in UTVs is a big development. It was done primarily for two reasons – safety and efficiency. In terms of safety, these vehicles are less risky to have around a place of business. Companies don’t have to keep spare containers of flammable liquid on hand to refuel UTVs if the vehicles are powered by electricity. And with this added freedom comes added financial savings – something any business appreciates.
The electric UTV market has grown so strongly over the past several years that there are plenty of options to choose from. Which is the best?Today we’ll rank the top five electric UTV options available in 2018. This will require us to examine them according to several criteria.
How We Choose Our Reviews: Ranking 2018’s Electric UTVs
How do you rate an electric UTV? There are a few different criteria to consider – and this is how we’ll go about choosing our top five for the year. First, we want to rate UTVs on their own merits first. While the electric aspect is a critical part of the decision-making process, functionality matters more. We’ll choose UTVs with good features that have a lot to offer in all areas.
This will cover the electric aspect as well, as a good electric UTV will need a reliable battery and other similar components to help it run. We’ll also consider the maker of the vehicle. While brand names alone don’t guarantee quality, an electric UTV from a more well-known manufacturer is likely to be held to higher quality standards during the design process.
Finally, we’ll examine the feedback these vehicles have gotten on the market from buyers. It’s a great way to show how the people who’ve actually paid money for these vehicles view them – the most important test there is for any product! Now let’s get going with our list – which UTVs made the cut?
Best Electric UTV Options in 2018: Our Top 5
Polaris is a big name in both the ATV and UTV industries. Their vehicles have garnered good sales and good feedback for decades, and now they’re offering a great new electric option in 2018.
With the Ranger EV, you’ll get a single AC induction motor with a battery voltage of 48. While the amp hours aren’t stated, you can get around 30 horsepower depending on the load you’re towing along. Bring a passenger alone with the two-seat configuration and avoid pesky road obstacles with the 10-inch ground suspension.
You can select the four-wheel drive option when you need it, giving you some flexibility and a way to save on some battery life. As for how far you can go, the Ranger offers an estimated range of 45-miles.
Dual hydraulic disks provide a great degree of stopping power and make this UTV safer than many of the others on the market. As for your capacity, you can haul 500-pounds and tow 1500-pounds. No matter how big your workload, that is enough strength to put a dent in it and even finish after a few good trips.
Finally, the price – for $11,299, it is one of the most modestly priced electric UTVs on the market.
Our Rating: 5/5
Made by a great manufacturer, the Ranger EV is a top choice by that merit to start. But it also has the specs, the electric reliability, and the efficient price tag necessary to top our list.
Nikola Powersports has a name that makes them seem like they’re a subsidiary of Tesla – and their electric UTV may help to continue those misconceptions. But the two companies are separate, and have even been in legal battles over ideas.
But one of Nikola’s greatest ideas in 2018 is their all-electric 400-volt UTV. The vehicle is not only equipped for various types of utility tasks, but it is potentially a few modifications from being street ready.
It’s young to the market, as dealerships only started receiving them in January 2018. There’s a $35,000 price tag attached to it, but it comes in two different performance variations. The first offers 415 horsepower with 3,675 foot-pounds of torque. The second is 555 horsepower and 4,900 foot-pounds of torque.
There are options for the battery too – 75 KWh, 100 kWh, and 125 kWh. While it does have four seats and less cargo space than the Ranger, it has a wide array of safety features. This includes anti-lock brakes, stability control, traction control, anti-rollover design, and more.
For safety, roominess for passengers, and electric reliability, this vehicle checks all the boxes. It offers 0-60 MPH speeds in less than four seconds – and that’s with three passengers inside.
Our Rating: 4/5
While a little pricier than the Ranger, this vehicle offers good battery performance and an all-around design focused on space and safety. It’s a great UTV that shows exactly what Nikola Motorsports is capable of.
Hisun may not have as big of a name as say Polaris in the vehicle industry, but their Sector E1 is a great entry into the electric UTV market.
This vehicle comes with a four-person seating capacity and a back cargo area. You get the best of both worlds in terms of space, and a powerful enough engine to haul everything along without issue. It offers a 48-volt engine capable of 27 horsepower with its electric drivetrain.
How about the electric performance? You can go 45 miles on a single charge and enjoy a maintenance-free battery system. No matter how fast and steadily you’re moving along, you can always stop comfortably thanks to the four-wheel hydraulic braking system.
The real selling point here is the price tag and the number of features included. For $9,999, you get everything from the roof to the windshield to aluminum rims included. Even a winch and nitrogen assisted shocks are included with the base price. For comparison’s sake, the Ranger can end up seeing a few hundred dollars added to its price for a couple of those accessories.
Our Rating: 4/5
The Sector E1 offers great value for the money, with only its slightly lesser-known name and fandom holding it back. It doesn’t mean this UTV isn’t worth checking out – its design easily earns it a spot on our list.
Another UTV with a high rating, Textron’s Prowler EV is one of the most exciting electric UTV options available in 2018.
For $10,499 you get a two-seater with cargo space and a 28.4 kWh capability. The engine is capable of 38 horsepower and uses an automatic transmission. Wheel composition is steel, and the model comes equipped standard with Carlisle Trail Pro tires.
Like certain others on this list, it comes with hydraulic disc brakes and offers an impressive capacity. It can haul 840 pounds or tow 1,000 pounds, meaning you can move cargo around no matter which way you choose to go about it.
You can get up to 24.5 MPH and enjoy up to 8-12 hours of performance on a single charge depending on how much weight you’re hauling. Though heavier loads will obviously put more strain on the car, that’s still an impressive battery life.
Our Rating: 3/5
It may not be from a brand as popular as some others on our list, but for the money and features, this is a great UTV to consider. It is a basic design, but gets the job done and helps users leave a smaller carbon footprint in the process.
This one ranks last on our list for one reason – it’s a hybrid.
While some people may consider that to be an automatic deal-breaker, it is worth noting that any engine with an electric component is one that can usually be found on most electric lists. If it runs on electric, at least partially, it helps reduce emission rates.
The Bad Boy can also fall into the category of a golf cart based off its design, but it is still technically a UTV. The vehicle’s four-wheel independent suspension makes for a smoother ride even when you’re on uneven terrain.
There’s also on-demand four-wheel drive to help you get the extra pull you need when the ride gets really rough. You can bring along one passenger and some cargo for your trip, and still get around with ease.
One of the main perks of this vehicle lies in its groundbreaking Regen Mode – a feature that lets you charge it on the fly! That’s handy workmanship – and it shows the benefits of having a hybrid engine.
Our Rating: 3/5
It’s the only hybrid on our list, but a fitting model to round it out. While it goes for around $12,500, this vehicle’s real major selling point is its unique Regen Mode and the hybrid systems it makes use of.
Buyer’s Guide: What To Look For in Your UTV
When you think about buying an electric UTV, you may have a few qualities in mind. Maybe you’re partial to a certain brand, or need a certain number of seats for your applications.
We now have plenty of options on the market, and any one of the UTVs mentioned on this list are worthy of consideration if you’re ready to move away from gas-powered vehicles.
Buyers should check the price range a vehicle has, as well as what features it offers. Some people may need four-wheel drive while others may not. The same can be said of various other features, meaning it is wise to make a list of desired specs beforehand.
This allows a buyer to much more easily get the best value for their dollar. And even if a model isn’t on this list, any of the above manufacturers or those on their same level can provide some great options to consider.
Will Electric UTVs Become the Norm Moving Forward?
Electric vehicles are growing in popularity all the time. And while it is easy to think that this is limited to passenger vehicles and commercial semis, even UTVs are being included in the exciting journey now.
The move toward an electric future can be safer for drivers, passengers, passerby’s, and the environment. People need to have options when it comes to their utility vehicle needs. Whether it is on the family farm or around the perimeter of a resort where they work, buyers want a reliable vehicle they can depend on – and going electric can guarantee that.
Any of the options we mentioned here are great ones to consider in 2018 – and there will likely be many more to follow in the coming years.