Electric vehicles are becoming increasingly popular as more manufacturers are beginning to provide electric and hybrid options across their range of models.
Still unsure whether to make the switch to an eco-friendly car? Throughout this page we cover the benefits of driving an all-electric vehicle, provide information on electric charging points and answer some FAQs.
The time it takes to fully-charge an electric vehicle varies depending on the vehicle's battery size and the speed of the charging point. There are three main types of EV chargeSlow chargersrs, each representing different power outputs and therefore charging speeds.
Electric and hybrid cars are still relatively new in the market and therefore it is normal to have many questions when considering to make the switch from a conventional car with an internal combustion engine (ICE). We have covered some of the most frequently asked questions below to make the switch easier for you.
How far can electric vehicles go?
Advances in technology have resulted in electric vehicles that are more capable of driving longer distances with an increased range but the true range is dependant upon the vehicle. Furthermore, public charging stations are becoming increasingly common meaning you can give your car a boost in charge whilst doing your weekly food shopping or stopping at a service station for a coffee, abolishing the concern of running out of charge on a long journey.
Where can I find a public charging point?
Finding your local electric car charging station is simple as websites and apps such as Zap-Map or Pod-Point exist to show you all the locations of charging points within a certain distance of your postcode. Heading out on a long distance journey? Fear not, you can plan your trip and locate charging points in advance so you don't need to panic about running out of battery charge to power your vehicle. Charging points are frequently appearing at supermarkets, service stations and workplaces; making charging your vehicle a much easier process.
How do charging points work?
Electric cars currently utilise multiple standards of connection which can prove difficult to understand, however, you will be pleased to know it is nearly impossible to use the wrong connection. Using the wrong connection doesn't compare to accidentally filling your diesel car up with petrol, worst-case-scenario would be that the duration of charging is longer than if you had used the correct connection.
What is the cost of charging an electric vehicle?
The most convenient and cost-effective method of charging an electric vehicle is with a home charger. In 2019 the average domestic electricity rate is just over 14p per kWh, so if the car has a 60 kWh battery it would cost around £8.40 to charge from completely empty to full. Furthermore, if you're fortunate and have an Economy 7 meter installed in your home you can expect the cost to be even less if you charge your vehicle overnight, when the cost of electricity is lower.
However, if you do need to charge your vehicle at a public charging station you will be pleasantly surprised to find out that many EV charge points are free to use but these do tend to be the slow chargers. If you require speedier charging with a fast or rapid charger, these often require payment. The rates of charging are often displayed as £ per kWh or £ per hour. Some charging points require a subscription account whereas others can be paid per single use.
How do you charge at home?
When switching to an electric vehicle it is definitely recommended to install an EV charging point at your home, however, it is often a requirement that you have off-street parking, for ease and safety. Home chargers are often the slow or fast type with the higher powered chargers being more expensive but Government grants are available for the installation of home EV charge points.
How long do electric batteries last?
Just like a battery in a mobile phone or a laptop, batteries in electric vehicles will gradually lose some of their capacity over an extended period of time. Car manufacturers are aware that battery longevity is a large concern to potential buyers which is why many now offer warranties on car batteries to provide the buyer with peace of mind that they are covered for so many years or miles. The life of a battery is largely dependent on how it is cared for; overheating, overcharging, deep discharge and high discharge can all impact the the battery's condition.
Are electric vehicles boring to drive?
Simple answer - no! Electric vehicles have unique qualities that make the driving experience the complete opposite to boring. Powerful yet silent; electric vehicles benefit from instant torque from an electric motor, resulting in rapid acceleration, faster than the acceleration from a petrol or diesel car.