An electric car docked at a charging station.

Guessing games and counting trucks. Singing along with my handheld cassette player—remember those? Stopping to stretch our legs and put gas in the car. Eagerly asking the inevitable question: "Are we there yet?" Road trips have been a family tradition for generations. But sooner than we think, many of us will be stopping to plug in, not gas up.

more on electric cars

U.S. sales of electric vehicles (EVs) have seen explosive growth in recent years—from fewer than 2,000 in 2010 to more than 230,000 in 2018. Innovative technology and lower prices have enhanced their appeal, while the fact that these vehicles reduce harmful emissions—benefiting the environment and public health—have made them all the more attractive.

Although still a niche market, EVs are cruising their way toward becoming mainstream. That's why we've been keeping such close tabs on them, tracking the distance they can travel on a single charge as well as the rising availability of charging stations nationwide. If you're considering making the switch to charging up instead of gassing up, be sure to consult our ratings. This month we take a close look at the latest fleet of EVs and score the cars on their handling, comfort, and safety features. Plus we preview more models coming soon.

Gas-free cars may indeed be our destination. "Are we there yet?" No, not quite. But as the auto industry continues its rapid evolution into exciting new arenas like electric vehicles and autonomous technologies, you can count on CR to keep giving you trustworthy insights so that you can decide which ride will suit you and the planet best for the journey ahead.

Editor’s Note: This article also appeared in the September 2019 issue of Consumer Reports magazine.