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An electric car buyer’s guide

Electric car_during chargingSo you want to do your bit for the environment and are looking into Electric Vehicles (EVs)? There are certain factors that could, or should, affect your decision as to whether the purchase is right for you, such as where you live and how much you plan on using the car. Below you’ll find a rough guide to give you a helping hand with your decision.

Your location

Do you have a garage? Do you have a drive? Do you have any parking? A recent study found that around 80 per centof UK car-owning households do have some form of access to parking. It may seem obvious but having somewhere safe and convenient to charge your car is potentially the biggest deal-breaker with EVs. Recharging your electric car overnight is the most popular option, but means that you have to be able to connect to a socket nearby as extension cables should never be used.

If you do have access to appropriate parking then great! The next step is to have a qualified Electrician do a survey to ensure your wiring is good enough to handle the high electrical draw. If for any reason it isn’t, then your options are limited to having wiring upgrades and getting a separate electrical circuit put in.

Another option is charging at work. 85 per cent of electric motorists charge up at home and/or at work. If your work is supportive of EVs then why not see if recharging through the day could be a possibility for you. Of course there is also the ever growing network of on-street charging points still rolling out across parts of the country; this could be a good option for you depending on where you’re based.

100 mile limit

The general limit for EVs is 100 miles before you’ll need to recharge. This is fine if you’re only intending to use the car for shorter trips and commuting, but if you wanted to take the car on a major trip without access to charging you may come unstuck.

If commuting is what you’ve got in mind for your EV then you’ll be pleased to know that around two-thirds of commuting trips are less than 10 miles and, most significantly, are routine journeys that the driver knows what to expect in respect to distance, route, congestion, road conditions and parking.

Cost

Since the used electric car market is yet to take off, the majority of EVs are bought brand new. Their novelty makes them significantly pricier than their petrol or diesel counterparts. More and more models are lined up for the coming years but their higher cost is likely to remain for a while to come.

One of the most popular EVs is the Nissan Leaf, which is now priced around £25,000. Data from CAP Automotive shows that over the past three years all-electric vehicles have retained only 20.2 per cent of their value. However, CAP is forecasting an improvement to 26 per cent retained value for EVs over the next three years, or 30,000 miles. This is still behind diesel cars, which on average have retained 44.7 per cent of their value, as well as Hybrids, retaining 45.3 per cent over the past three years.

Plug-in car grant

In order to encourage the purchase of EV’s the Government offers a 25 per cent grant towards the cost of ultra-low emission cars, up to a maximum of £5,000. The Plug-in Car Grant was put in place to help make the life costs of qualifying cars more equal to the costs of petrol or diesel equivalents. However, there is no telling how long grants will be given out for, as over time manufacturers will begin to make these cars in greater volumes, meaning that the costs of production should, in theory,begin to fall, and naturally make them more affordable for more people.

This post was written by ASM Auto Recycling, who will buy your old vehicle and recycle it for cash, offering a number of environmental benefits.

Image source: Electric Car

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