The Future is Electric: 8 Things You Need to Know About EVsBy Angelica Malin
You cannot avoid the hype surrounding electric vehicles (EV). Cheaper to run than traditional fuel cars, they have all the latest mod cons, and you can’t forget their planet-saving potential! But why are these top-selling motors fuelling the industry?
With government deadlines in place to stop the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles by 2030, EV sales have risen to astronomical heights. So let’s see why the future is electric. Here are 8 things you need to know about EVs:
There is more than 1 type of EV
While pure electric cars will continue to emit zero tailpipe emissions for their lifetime, it’s worth knowing ahead of purchasing that there is more than one type of electric vehicle:
Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV)
A BEV is perhaps the most popular type of electric vehicle as it’s the one that is known as a ‘pure’ or 100% electric car.
You have to charge your BEV with an external power source (a ChargePoint). And the biggest perk: these vehicles don’t produce any tailpipe emissions, which currently keeps you away from paying extra road taxes.
Range has vastly improved in recent years, and some models can reach upwards of 300 miles on a single charge, such as the Tesla S and the Lucid Air.
Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV)
A PHEV is a step up from its traditional counterparts as they use a battery, electric drive motor and an internal combustion engine (ICE) to operate. It can be driven using either the electric drive motor, the ICE or a combination of both. Like BEV, it uses an external power source to charge.
The pure electric range can reach up to 50 miles (average) on most PHEVs before switching to hybrid mode, giving you more range.
Regular charging is a must; otherwise, you could end up spending more than you would on their counterpart to run.
Extended Range Electric Vehicle (E-REV)
E-REVs are a type of plug-in hybrid. It combines a battery, electric drive motor and a small petrol or diesel generator to work. While the electric motor drives the wheels, the ICE functions as a generator when you run out of battery charge.
Range varies between 150-300 miles per charge.
Cheaper to run
With fuel costs crippling most motorists’ bank balances, a fully charged pure EV will give you an average range of 200 miles for about £8-£12 compared to £25-£32 in fuel.
You can curb costs even further by charging at home throughout the night when electricity tariffs are at their lowest.
What’s more, some shopping centres, service stations and other public charge-points will let you charge for free when you’re parked.
Available on finance
Combined with the government’s money-saving £1,500 plug-in grant, you can grab yourself a real bargain at the dealership.
Car finance is the cheapest way to purchase a new vehicle; whether you opt for a personal contract purchase (PCP), hire purchase (HP), or a lease contract, monthly costs are more manageable than other payment options.
Moreover, car finance gives you access to the latest models, the best safety features and all the mod cons that cash alone would struggle to buy.
While the future of hybrids is uncertain, with most new sales being pulled from the forecourt by 2035, pure electric and hybrids can currently enjoy exemptions from extra road taxes.
London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) and large city schemes such as Birmingham and Portsmouth’s Clean Air Zones (CAZ) can set you back £8 – £12 a day with a vehicle outside the required emissions standard.
Other perks include:
Zero excise duty for pure EVs
Zero emission vehicles (EVs which emit 0g/km CO2) qualify for a cleaner vehicle discount from 25th October 2021 – all other vehicles will be required to pay London’s Congestion Charge
EVs are available on the secondhand market
With more and more EVs available, it was only a matter of time before they landed in the secondhand market. Cheaper than fitting the upfront costs of a brand new EV, there are numerous perks to going for a used option.
Make sure you check out the age of the battery ahead of purchase, as well as previous ownership and servicing.
EV battery lease
Today most EVs on sale come with a battery that is yours outright, but there are a few exceptions.
The Renault Zoe, for example, offers you the choice between owning or leasing a battery. Based on battery size and agreed mileage, leasing costs can vary between £49 to £110 per month.
But, battery leasing really is the exception and not the rule unless you opt for an older model from the used market. Earlier Nissan Leafs and Zoes will require you to lease a battery, as it was thought that if a battery failed or suffered a significant loss in performance, it could be replaced under a lease agreement.
You can expect between five and eight years of warranty on any new electric motors and battery components when you purchase an EV.
The rest of the car’s warranty length will depend on the manufacturer and will likely stick to the traditional three to seven-year or 60,000 to 100,000 miles model of cover.
Popularity comes with a price…
The demand for EVs is higher than ever, and some motorists will have to wait in line before the EV they want becomes available.
The production of lithium-ion batteries is widely reported to be struggling with the increased demand worldwide. However, this is very much seen as a short-term problem. As the industry manages to cope with the rapid increase in demand and battery production is ramped up to match, waiting times will come down too.
The future of the automotive industry is electric. With every global brand name and manufacturer ramping up EV production and offering more electric choices than ever, it’s only a matter of time before their traditional counterparts become a distant memory. Are you ready to make the switch?