Blog

The Honest Truth about Electric Cars

Thursday, February 13, 2020

Environmental impact is becoming a growing concern for most people in Britain and across the globe, and we are always thinking of any small ways we can help to make a difference. One thing you may have considered is whether to switch to an electric vehicle. But how realistic is this option, and do electric cars really live up to their “green” expectations? Read on to find out about what Britons are concerned about and the truth behind their worries:

Can I afford to buy an electric car?

The truth is electric cars don’t come particularly cheap. In fact, the cheapest on the current UK market is a Renault Zoe, which can be picked up for around £22,000 when purchased using a Government Grant. You may be able to get an older model a bit cheaper but beware that previous versions will most likely feature older tech, which can mean decreased battery sizes, a shorter driving range and motors of a poorer quality. The good news here, is that as electric cars become more popular and widespread, new models will emerge and these will no doubt include vehicles that are more affordable to purchase.

Do they take a long time to charge?

The answer to this question really lies with which electric vehicle you are charging, what charging point you are using and what you consider to be a “long time”. Currently in the UK we are a bit behind when it comes to car charging speed, typically the average electric car has a 60kWh battery, which would take approximately 8 hours to charge from empty to full using a standard 7kW charging point. However, if you were to use a 50kW rapid charger, you would be able to top up 100 miles of electric driving power in around 30 minutes.

For those of you who need a faster charging speed, you may be in luck in the future, as a new generation of electric cars is rolling out across Europe which can be charged using a super-fast 350kW charging point, which could mean fully charging your electric vehicle in as little as 10 to 15 minutes! The bad news is, it may be a while before the UK catches up, as currently there is only one vehicle on the UK market which can accept even a 150kW charge (The Audi E-tron) so there are currently no charging stations here capable of charging anything even close to 350kW.

Are they really “greener” than regular cars?

Electric cars are certainly more environmentally friendly to drive than a petrol or diesel alternative, but are they really as green as they are marketed to be? The uncomfortable truth is this may not be the case! Whilst they are undoubtably better for the planet than non-electric cars, ultimately their carbon footprint is determined by the nature of the electricity generation that is feeding the battery pack. Currently only around 27.9% of electric energy produced in the UK is generated by renewable production, meaning that almost three quarters of all electricity produced here is from non-renewable sources, this means that charging your vehicle may be more environmentally damaging than you have been led to believe by marketing campaigns!

Are they actually cheaper to run?

Currently yes! Due to high costs of petrol, diesel and the higher rates of road tax for regular fuel powered vehicles, electric cars are currently much cheaper to run. However, this may not always be the case in the future! As the electric revolution unfolds, the government is inevitably going to lose billions currently raised from fuel taxation. This deficit will need replacing, and they will have to find another way to raise the funds, which in inevitably lead to having to tax electricity in the same way. So, you may find in the future that charging your electric car won’t come quite so cheaply after all!

Back

Website design Warwickshire