While you’ve been stuck at home over the past few months, you will have likely been thinking about what you could change to improve your life once lockdown had passed.
From making improvements in and around the home to starting afresh with your career, there are a number of things you can do to embrace post-lockdown life, celebrating the eventual passing of the coronavirus pandemic.
So, now that the lockdown restrictions have been eased somewhat, the time has finally come to put those plans into action and turn them into a reality – whether that be adopting a new pet, buying a new electric garage door or, as we’re here to discuss in this article, investing in a new car.
An Electrifying Decision
Following the government’s decision to move the ban on petrol and diesel cars forward to 2035, many people will have been using their time in lockdown to weigh up whether now’s the time to invest in the alternative means of fuel: electric.
This article is designed to answer this question once and for all, highlighting the key reasons as to why you should or should not think about going electric for your next car.
From the battery life to the durability, and everything in between, we cover the advantages and disadvantages of buying electric. So, what are we waiting for? Let’s dive right in.
Electric cars are ideal for short journeys
Whether this is seen as a pro or a con really depends on you and what you need your car for.
Putting it simply, electric cars can’t go as far on one charge as petrol or diesel cars can on a full tank. Therefore, if you’re looking for a car that can drive you between London and Edinburgh on a regular basis, going electric might not be the best idea just yet.
However, if you tend to rack up a lot of short journeys across town then an electric car could be a good fit since they’re ideal for driving in the city. They’re also perfect for people who don’t tend to drive a huge amount, largely thanks to how economically and environmentally-friendly they are to run.
Charging an electric car is pretty easy… for now
Despite their ever-growing popularity, electric cars still represent a tiny minority of the cars you see on the roads so, as a result of that, finding a free charging point is relatively straightforward.
However, as time goes on, that tiny minority will continue to grow, increasing the number of drivers looking to charge their motors. If the UK’s transport network struggles to keep up with the demand, finding a charging point while out and about could prove much more difficult, leading to larger wait times.
Installing your own charging point at your home is a good way of picking up the slack, but can also come with its own issues depending on your circumstances. Not only is there the extra energy expense to take into account, in terms of the up-front installation charge and the running costs, but the speed in which they can charge tends to be a lot slower when based at home.
Electric cars are generally more expensive
Let’s not beat around the bush here – electric cars do tend to be more expensive to buy upfront than petrol or diesel cars but the price gap is nowhere near what it used to be.
Generally speaking, in today’s market, you will need approximately £25,000 to get your hands on one, and even more if you’re looking to buy a Tesla. Nonetheless, there are now a number of cost-effective options available to spread out the cost.
The Mini Electric, for example, travels up to 124 miles on a single charge and costs upwards of £24,400. The Tesla Model S, meanwhile, is £52,000 more expensive but can travel almost 200 miles further.
However, the main perk of buying an electric car is the value they offer over the long term. Not only are they a lot more economical to run but – thanks to the extended warranties many of the models have – they’re also less likely to encounter any issues if looked after correctly.
There might come a better time to buy
While electric cars are an incredibly enticing prospect, it’s important to remember that they’re also in their relative infancy. In other words, the technology is still being continuously honed and improved to ensure they perform exactly as they should.
For example, electric cars are incredibly quiet which, while may be seen as a good thing to many, also comes with its own problems – especially in ensuring roads are safe for other cars, motorcyclists and pedestrians.
There’s also question marks surrounding how durable electric cars will prove against petrol or diesel over the long run. As reported by various media outlets, Tesla has already had various issues in ensuring the safety of their batteries, with multiple stories coming out citing explosions on various highways over the years.
With this in mind, waiting a little while longer for the technology to improve may be a more sensible option. Alternatively, thinking about an electric hybrid over the medium-term could be a better compromise for now, while you sit and wait for electric cars to become the best versions that they can be.
This article was written for CleanCar by Annie Button