How much do you REALLY know about electric cars? The EV wave is coming hard and fast and the more you know about them, the easier it will be to find your perfect model.
For a majority of UK drivers, electric vehicles are still the cars of the future and not something that needs to be considered right now. However, the electric car industry is quickly becoming a huge part of our day-to-day lives. There is no doubt that the electric car market is rapidly increasing with over 10 million of them appearing across the world last year. Now that so many new battery-powered rides are scheduled for release in the coming years, the future is closer than many might believe.
Although more and more people are following the trend of going green, with an electric car being very appealing as a way to reduce pollution and carbon emissions, many motorists are still unaware of the benefits around performance, charging and cost. “No fun, expensive, dangerous” are just some of the common misconceptions around electric cars and the sheer range of different makes and models aren’t helping people narrow down their options and learn more about the benefits.
Those who remain unschooled in the virtues of plug-in or electric vehicles often hold onto dated and inaccurate perceptions of this particular vehicular genre. So, with that in mind, we’ve decided to finally lay to rest some of the most common myths about electric cars.
1) There aren’t enough public chargers
With new petrol and diesel cars being banned in 2030, many motorists are concerned that there won’t be enough charging points around the UK. While at the moment this is not enough for 2030, when petrol and diesel car sales will be banned, there is a lot of focus on accelerating the rollout of charging infrastructure.
As more motorists switch to EVs and alternative greener cars, the number of chargers will rise exponentially. The network of public charge points for electric vehicles is growing by an estimated 500 per month, meaning that there is approximately 25,000 public charge points across the country. This means that EV drivers are never more than 25 miles from a charger on UK roads.
Studies suggest that a majority of electric car owners charge the battery at home or work. However, this isn’t an option for all motorists looking to make the switch. Public charging infrastructure is important for top-ups on long car journeys, as well as for drivers without off-street parking and those who need to charge at work.
Recent announcements from the Prime Minister highlights that £1.3bn to be used to increase the number of public charging stations in England, along with £950m focused on rapid charging on motorways. So with a huge investment and focus on boosting charging points, there is no doubt that there will be plenty of charging points ahead of the ban in 2030.
2) Charging an electric car takes too long
The time taken for charging depends on many things such as the charging unit, the capacity of the battery and the model you drive.
It is true that when plugged into a domestic power outlet, it can take a night for an empty electric car battery to fully recharge. With the use of a powerful charging wallbox that you can have installed at your home, charging times can be significantly reduced. Domestic Wall boxes typically deliver 7kW, which means that a 64kWh battery takes just over nine hours to fully charge. This can easily be done overnight or during your workday. Faster 50kW chargers are often found at motorway services. If you plugged in an e-Niro with an empty battery, it would be 80% charged in an hour and a quarter.
Many EV owners say plugging in in the evening and having a full battery in the morning is often more convenient than having to stop at a petrol station on your way to your destination.
The time is taken to recharge the battery of an electric car has dropped sharply and will only improve as a new generation of batteries and more powerful charging points become available. With charging technology improving every year too, some rapid chargers can add as much as 80% of charge in as little as 30 minutes.
“With high-power charging it is even possible to recharge sufficiently in 20 minutes – around the time it takes for a coffee break.” – Benjamin Bucksch, Product Manager Wallboxes at BMW Charging.
It is also worth considering that some car chargers are more powerful than others. For instance:
– The charger that is most commonly found in homes is the 7kW and best for an overnight charge.
– 22kW charging stations are usually found in supermarkets and shopping centres and are ideal for a top-up
– 50kW/100kW/150kW are the best options on a journey
3) Electric cars are slow
Did you know that, on average, electric cars are quicker off the mark? That’s because an electric motor generates 100% of its available torque instantly. When the driver of an EV pushes down on the accelerator pedal, the transition from stationary to speed is almost instantaneous. In other words, pure electric cars accelerate quicker than a petrol or diesel equivalent.
For instance, the Jaguar I-Pace can hit 0-62mph in 4.8 seconds, quicker than its F-Pace partner. Of course, let’s not forget about Tesla. The top version of the Tesla Model S, when engaged in “ludicrous” mode, is one of the quickest production cars in the world at any price, with a 0-60 mph time clocked at a sudden 2.5 seconds.
So while another electric vehicle myth is that people may think that electric cars are slow, the reality is that they accelerate faster than other cars and will often feel faster because of this. The top speeds aren’t that different between electric and petrol/diesel cars, but one big difference is that there won’t be the noisy revving sound of the engine on an electric vehicle.
4) They’re expensive to own and run
Though battery costs are expected to drop dramatically in the coming years due to the growth in the market, for the time being, most EVs are premium priced, compared to similar petrol-powered models. However, there’s so much more that factors into the cost of a car such as road tax, MOT costs, fueling and more.
Pure electric cars may have higher upfront purchase costs than their petrol and diesel cousins, however, these cars offer some great future savings. With an EV you could save around £650 a year in tax and fuel since they are zero-rated and electricity is about a third of the price as petrol/diesel.
Of course, like any car, electric cars will still need servicing. But since they only have around 20 moving parts in comparison to a petrol car with over 200, servicing is around 70% less over an EV’s lifetime. So with fewer moving parts there is a lot less to go wrong! Additionally, electric vehicles don’t need oil, have longer service schedules and benefit from reduced wear and tear on key items such as brake pads and discs due to regenerative braking systems.
Obviously, there will be the main features that need to be regularly checked including the battery pack, cabling, brakes, wheels, steering etc. The good news is that through fewer parts and regenerative braking causing less wear and tear, an electric car can be cheaper to service and maintain. It’s worth mentioning that the UK government provides a £2,500 Plug-in Car Grant (PiCG) towards the purchase of eligible pure electric cars priced up to £35,000.
Each year, the public concern about the dangers of air pollution rises and electric cars are speeding to the top of the motoring agenda. The trend is likely to continue as the harmful effects of exhaust emissions become clear. The government has announced that by 2040 all new cars sold in the UK must be “effectively zero emission”. If you need to hear more about the benefits of electric cars then check out our helpful blogs or you can contact our team today.