Should you buy an electric car?
It seems like nowadays everybody loves the new technical invention and, arguably, the most talked about invention within the car industry is the electric car.
Image: Electric Ford Fiesta via Ecomento
Over the space of four years the UK’s sales of electric cars went from 3,500 in 2013 to 80,000 in 2016 and 130,000 in December 2017 (around 2% of the new car market).
Electric cars are not widely available on the used car market at the moment but they will be eventually, which should make them more affordable.
Whilst they’re still new, we’ve looked at the full cost and details such as where you can find electric charge points.
Electric charge points
The huge boom in electric vehicles means businesses across the UK have started offering a quick way to recharge vehicles. You’ll now find electric charge points at petrol stations, supermarkets and shopping outlets across the country.
There are over 12,500 different connectors across the UK at around 4,500 different locations. These electric charge points range from slow charge (overnight) to rapid 80% charge (30 minutes).
If you’re looking to find a local electric charging station you can use Zap Map who claim to have the most comprehensive list of charge points within the UK. Beware, however, that there may be points not on the map so if you know of one that’s not on there add it to help fellow electric drivers!
Charging an electric car
The extensive number of charge points means you don’t have to worry about charging an electric car when you’re out and about or if you’re planning on a cross country road trip. It is recommended that you do a bit of planning before you set off though.
Electric cars can travel around 100 miles before needed a recharge.
Use a map to plan your journey with regular stops where you can refuel and stretch your legs. Remember to check how fast the charge point is though as you don’t want to be running on empty and only have an overnight charging option!
At home, charging your electric car should come easy as government grants enable you to get a charger installed with a decent discount.
Should I buy an electric car?
As with any purchase there are pros and cons. We’ve listed some of the common ones below but they are in no way the be all and end all. If you’re looking to purchase an electric car in the future, we recommend you research how it will fit your lifestyle.
- Fuel is cheaper running at around 2p-3p per mile
- Eco friendly
- You’ll need to invest in a charge point at home. Off-street parking is essential
- You may need an additional vehicle for really long journeys
The costs of an electric car
- Fuel - £800
- Car tax - £110 (highest saving for bands A-D)
Total saving: £910
- Car - £15,500 (including grant)
- Charging station - £166 (including grant)
- Electricity - £300
Total costs: £15,966
These costs are not going to be every year, it’s only the electricity which will be an ongoing cost. This means that each year you’ll be saving around £610.
It depends how much the vehicles are you usually purchase but if you compare these figures to an electric car the savings could be instant. The 2018 Ford Fiesta is rumoured to cost around £18,500 which, if you chose an electric car instead, would save you around £3,000 instantly and £900 each year.
It won’t be long before they start flooding the used car market - would you buy one?