Electric and hybrid cars have certainly been becoming more popular, especially in recent months, and online interest is the highest it has been in the past 12 months. Demand is particularly high in the new car market with battery, plug-in hybrids, and hybrid sales up 37% year on year in August, whereas sales for new petrol and diesel cars were down 40% and 65% respectively.
So, what’s stopping those from not making the switch? There are 5 common reasons why drivers are unsure when it comes to going electric, and if you’re one of those people, luckily, we can help with those reservations and clear up these common myths.
An EV might run out of range
Range anxiety remains the biggest reason why people won’t buy an EV, yet improvements in battery technology mean it’s now a thing of the past. A lot of people won’t buy an EV because they’re worried the electric range might leave them stranded, but the reality is that most new pure electric cars will happily travel over 200 miles between charges and often more. For example, the Volvo C40 Recharge can manage up to 260 miles and the Jaguar I-PACE can handle up to 300 miles on a single charge. You generally only have to charge the battery as frequently as you might visit a petrol station.
There’s a limited infrastructure
Two years ago, this might have been the case. But today there are charging points in every British town and city, and most EV owners have a home charger. The infrastructure is nothing like it was. Today, most people charge their cars from the comfort of their own homes, and if they need a top-up on the road there’s a vast fast-charging network that allows you to charge the battery to up to 80 per cent capacity in the time it takes to drink a coffee and grab a sandwich at the motorway services. There are currently over 40,000 charging points in the UK and that number is increasing by around 500 per month.
They’re expensive to buy
Not true. While an EV may be more expensive initially than a petrol or diesel car on paper, the savings you’ll make in running costs over time more than make up the difference. And they’re getting cheaper – manufacturers such as MG are disrupting the market with sub £25k EVs, priced about the same as a Vauxhall Astra. Don’t forget that there is used supply now too; you no longer need a bottomless bank account to buy an EV.
They’re expensive to maintain
A lot of people are put off buying EVs because they believe that they require specialist maintenance when the reality is that they don’t – indeed, maintenance is often less than that required of a more traditional car. The truth is there are far fewer moving parts and most electric powertrains are both sealed for life and utterly reliable. The only parts you’ll generally need are the usual wear items such as brakes, tyres and suspension parts – and they’re just like any conventional car. EVs are actually far cheaper to maintain. Plus, you’ll also save on road tax and there are plug-in grants available too.
An EV doesn’t suit my lifestyle
It might not seem logical, but those who live in rural areas or who only have on-street parking aren’t at a disadvantage with EVs. EVs are often a better choice for rural customers as they can charge up the car at home rather than use an expensive and hard-to-find countryside filling station. An EV adds convenience rather than takes it away. And if you can’t have a charging point at home it’s still no reason not to own an EV – most terraced homes and flats are in urban areas, where a weekly or monthly trip to a public charging point is all you need to use your car. Plug it in at the supermarket during the weekly shop and there’s no compromise at all.