Looking to make the switch to an electric vehicle in 2023?
Whether you’re interested in a full plug in electric car, or simply fancy one with a hybrid motor, there are a number of important factors to consider when it comes to buying an EV (electric vehicle) and it’s not just about having one on your drive in a bid to impress your neighbours!
Start with Researching the EV that’s Right for you and Do It Thoroughly
To start off, it’s important to understand the different types of electric cars available and what each one has to offer an owner. Some of the most popular options include plug in vehicles like Tesla 3’s, Jaguar’s I-Pace or even the Nissan Leaf, as well as plug-in hybrids like the Kia Sportage or Ford Kuga Plug-in Hybrid Vehicle (aka “PHEV”). Each brand has its own set of pros and cons, so you’ll need to do your research before making a final decision about which EV model and specification is right for you.
Here are some tips on where and how to do research when choosing an electric car:
- Read reviews online: Start by reading reviews online from reputable sources such as What Car or Auto Express. These reviews can provide valuable insight into the pros and cons of various models so that you can narrow down your search.
- Visit dealerships: Visiting dealerships in person can be a great way to get a feel for different models and ask questions about features and pricing. It can also be helpful to test drive different cars so that you can get a better sense of which one is right for you.
- Compare prices: Once you have narrowed down your search, compare prices from different dealerships or online retailers to ensure that you are getting the best deal possible.
- Research incentives: Many company’s offer or purchasing electric cars, so be sure to research any offers before making your purchase. You may find if you don’t ask you won’t get!
In addition to understanding the different types of electric vehicles, it’s also useful to consider factors like overall cost and range. Electric cars can be quite expensive, with many models costing well over £30,000 and with the UK government withdrawing funding for many EV’s it’s not going to get any cheaper. Hybrids typically offer a longer driving range on fossil fuel than fully electrical vehicles can go before needing to be charged, though a hybrid may not be able to go as far on a single charge as car makers advertise.
The war in Ukraine, though not wholly to blame, has lead to the cost of electricity going up so charging your EV isn’t as cheap as it once might have been. This may change in the future as the cost of energy comes down (we can all hope), but right now if you charge your EV at a commercial charger we hear it’s not far off – in comparison – to the cost of filling up your petrol or diesel powered car.
You will also have to consider the type of use you’ll put your EV through and question how that will affect your lifestyle:
- Will the EV be used for long trips? If so, what’s its battery range?
- Are there regular commercial chargers en-route or are you going to have to face the stress of range anxiety? Something “petrolheads” don’t typically have to face with plenty of petrol stations available to fill up.
- Do you only need a small electric car or do you need a family SUV ? The bigger the car the bigger the battery is needed so it’s going to cost more all round. A smaller EV may cost less but the downside is it might not give you the passenger space you need.
- Safety features – EV’s offer additional features over fossil fuel powered cars including advanced safety technology – do you need them and are you willing to pay more for them?
- What budget do you have if you’re paying for car on a monthly basis?
- What electric car offers the best for your needs?
At the end of the day, making the switch to an electric vehicle is a big decision that requires careful consideration. By doing your research and weighing the pros and cons of each type of car, you can feel confident in your choice and start enjoying all the benefits that come with owning an electric vehicle.
How much does it to cost to run an electric car?
The cost of running an electric car can vary depending on a number of factors, including the type of vehicle you choose, its battery size and how you use it. If you travel a lot of miles then you’ll need to recharge it more often therefore it’s going to cost more money and with homeowners being charged at roughly 34p per Kwh it might cost you more than you think.
How much does it cost to install a home charger for an electric vehicle?
The cost of installing a home charger for an electric vehicle can vary depending on a number of factors, including the type of charger you need, your location, and the specific services provided by your installer. On average, it is estimated that installing a home charging station typically costs between £800 and £1500. However, this price can vary significantly depending on the specific needs and requirements of your car and home.
To get an accurate estimate for installing a home charger for your electric vehicle, check with an experienced installer in your area who can help guide you through the process. And when comparing different installation options, make sure to consider things like warranty coverage and ongoing service needs to ensure you are getting the best value. Don’t pay extra for a fast charger at home if you plan to only charge overnight, there really is no need!
What’s the difference between a plug-in electric car versus a hybrid?
The main difference between a plug–in electric car and a hybrid is its power delivery. A plug–in electric car runs completely on electricity, whereas a hybrid uses a combination of an electric motor and a petrol or diesel engine (you’ll find most are petrol powered). Plug–in electric cars can travel further on battery power alone and require less maintenance, while hybrids provide a longer range and are more suitable for long–distance trips as they can switch to using fossil fuels lowering any worries of range anxiety for the driver.
While both types of vehicles often come with higher upfront costs compared to conventional vehicles, plug-in electric cars tend to be more expensive in the long run due to their higher maintenance needs and ongoing fuel costs. Overall, the choice between a plug-in electric car versus a hybrid will depend on your budget and how comfortable you are using only electricity to travel.
Should I buy a used EV or a new one?
Whether you should buy a used or new electric car depends heavily on your individual needs and circumstances.
There are several factors you’ll want to consider when deciding between a used or new electric car.
The most important factor is cost. Used electric cars are typically somewhat cheaper than new EV’s, but they may not come with the same warranties, features, and service options that come with a new car. Buying used can help you save on upfront costs but you may find lower battery capacity and a diminished range which can prove disappointing. Additionally, it’s important to consider the condition of the used car and how long it has been on the road. If you buy a used electric car, you’ll also need to factor in the cost of any necessary repairs or upgrades as well as getting it through its MOT.
Another factor to consider is the range of the EV. New electric cars typically have longer ranges than used ones, so if you plan on driving long distances you may want to opt for a newer EV.
Finally, you should consider the availability of charging stations in your area. If charging stations are scarce, it may be best to buy a new electric car with a longer range so that you don’t have to worry about running out of charge.
Ultimately, the decision of whether to buy a used or new electric car is a personal one. Consider all of the factors mentioned above and then make an informed decision that meets your needs.
Generally speaking, buying a used electric car can be a great way to save money on upfront costs, while purchasing a new vehicle typically gives you access to the latest innovations in terms of design and functionality.
Should I test drive an EV or just order one off the Internet?
If you are a first-time EV buyer, we’d strongly recommend that you test drive an EV before making your purchase. This will allow you to get a feel for the vehicle and make sure it meets your needs. You can also ask questions about the car and get a better idea of the range and performance of the vehicle. Additionally, test driving an EV allows you to compare different models and brands to find the one that best suits you.
Buying a car online can be a great way to save time and money if you know exactly what you are looking for, while test driving an EV may be beneficial if you want to get a better sense of its performance and functionality before making a final decision.
If you are familiar with electric vehicles and have a good idea of what type of car you want, you may feel comfortable ordering one off the internet. However, it is important to do your research beforehand and make sure the EV you are purchasing is the right one for you. Additionally, it is important to make sure the car is in good condition (certainly if it’s used) and that you are getting a good deal.
Ultimately, the decision on whether to test drive or purchase an EV off the internet is up to you – we’d opt for a test drive first before buying any car.
Ultimately, the decision whether to test drive or order an EV will depend on your specific needs and priorities. For example, if you have limited time or access to EV models in your area, ordering one off the internet may be the best (and only) option you have.
Does an Electric Vehicle need an MOT?
Yes, electric cars will need an MOT in the UK. The MOT is an annual check-up of a vehicle’s safety, roadworthiness and exhaust emissions. All cars registered in the UK must have an MOT from their third anniversary of registration.
Electric cars are subject to the same safety and roadworthiness tests that petrol and diesel cars must pass. However, electric cars are exempt from the exhaust emissions test, as they do not put out any exhaust emissions.
In addition to the annual MOT, electric cars should be subject to other safety inspections throughout the year. These typically include:
- Tyre pressures and tread depth check
- Lights and indicators check
- Battery check
- Regenerative braking system check
- Safety equipment check
- Suspension check
- Brake system check
It is important to remember that all electric cars must meet the minimum safety standards set out by the Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA). The MOT is an important part of this, so it is essential to ensure that your electric car has its MOT every year – from 3 years old – to ensure it remains roadworthy and legal.
Additionally, some EV manufacturers may provide free MOTs or other maintenance services as part of their warranty agreement. It’s worth asking when you come to buy your EV.
Are Electric cars more reliable than petrol or diesel powered cars?
The answer to this question depends on several factors. Generally speaking, electric cars are more reliable than petrol or diesel powered cars in terms of performance, emissions, maintenance costs and fuel economy.
Performance: Electric cars have fewer moving parts than petrol or diesel powered cars, which makes them more reliable in terms of performance and reliability. Electric cars also have higher torque and higher acceleration rates than petrol or diesel cars, as well as faster response times.
Emissions: Electric cars have zero tailpipe emissions, meaning they have no impact on the environment (other than when mining for the precious metals for the batteries). In comparison, petrol and diesel cars have higher levels of air pollution and are known to contribute to climate change.
Maintenance costs: Electric cars are generally more reliable and require less maintenance than petrol or diesel powered cars. This is due to the fact that electric cars have fewer moving parts, and therefore fewer parts that can wear out or require servicing.
Fuel economy: Electric cars are much more fuel efficient than petrol or diesel powered cars. This is because electric cars use electricity to power the motor, which is more efficient than burning fossil fuel.
Overall, electric cars are more reliable than petrol or diesel powered cars in terms of performance, emissions, maintenance costs and fuel economy. However, the cost of electric cars is still higher than petrol or diesel powered cars, so this should be taken into consideration when making your final decision.
Maintaining, servicing and repairing your EV
If you own an electric vehicle, it is important to understand how to maintain and repair it properly in order to ensure that it runs smoothly and lasts for many years. Some basic maintenance tasks may include checking your tire pressures or charging the battery regularly. Additionally, if you encounter any issues with your EV, getting regular servicing from a qualified mechanic can help prevent problems from worsening over time.
To get started maintaining and repairing your electric car, it is recommended that you consult with the manufacturer’s guide or speak with a trusted professional like a mechanic or automotive technician. Additionally, investing in high-quality auto parts and following the recommended maintenance schedule can go a long way towards keeping your EV running smoothly for years to come giving you peace of mind.
Conclusion – should you buy one?
There’s no escaping it, over the next 10 years or so, fossil-fueled vehicles are going to be phased out in the UK and it’s likely to be (new) electric cars only being allowed to be sold by 2035 in the UK. Though the technology is still somewhat in its infancy electric vehicles are considerably improving their range every year and it’s very likely we’ll begin to see more affordable family EV’s being introduced as the price of the battery technology comes down.
We say if you can afford it then go for it but if not we’d advise to stick with petrol, ideally an engine that’s economical but gives you enough acceleration to keep up with the demand of modern traffic for now.