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Electric car benefits

What are the benefits of owning an electric car?

published: 12 May 2022
Read time: 5 minutes

Electric vehicles (EVs) have boosted in popularity in more recent years. What started off as a drive to help the environment has bought financial, performance, and social benefits too. And with the government’s impending ban on new petrol and diesel cars by 2030, you too may soon find yourself charging your car instead of fuelling it.

<strong>Top electric car benefits:</strong>

  • Environmentally friendly zero carbon emissions

  • Cheaper to run compared to petrol and diesel cars

  • Require less maintenance because there are less parts to break

  • Quieter than combustion engines, so reduce noise pollution

  • Exempt from paying road tax and London congestion charge

  • Government grants to help you buy a new electric car and install a charging point at home

  • Free parking in some cities

Read on to discover in full detail the benefits of switching to a hybrid or fully electric car. 

Environmental benefits of electric cars

One of the biggest advantages of electric cars is how green they are versus their combustion engine counterparts. Although making electric cars does use a lot of energy (during battery manufacturing), there is still a huge reduction in emissions created over the car’s lifetime. 

Environmental benefits of electric vehicles include:

  • Reducing your carbon footprint: Electric cars don’t emit any exhaust gases, which makes them much better for the environment than petrol or diesel cars 

  • Improved air quality: Because electric cars emit zero emissions, they produce zero CO2 reducing air pollution considerably

  • Less noise pollution: Electric cars have no need for an engine, so make very little noise

Electric car charging in street

Economic benefits of electric cars

As well as helping the environment, you could also save money by driving an electric vehicle.

Running and maintenance costs

Electric cars are cheaper to run than a traditional combustion engine. Fully electric vehicles costs around 6p per mile vs more than 12p for traditional fuel customers. The actual price will depend on your electricity deal at home and how efficient your electric car is.

Electric cars are still more expensive to buy than cars with petrol or diesel engines, but they require much less maintenance and so still tend to be cheaper overall. This is because EVs have fewer moving parts which means less potential for something to go wrong. 

Driving, parking and charging costs

There are other financial benefits of owning an electric car too. Fully electric vehicles pay no road tax and if you live or work around London and drive an electric car, you won’t need to pay the congestion charge. Plus, in some areas in the UK you can find free, priority, or dedicated parking bays for electric cars. 

You will also have convenient charging points at home, work and while shopping. Some energy suppliers have even started offering energy tariffs aimed at EV owners which can help you charge at a reduced price at home.

Do EVs have resale value?

Initially, resale values on EV were poor because there wasn’t a big market for people wanting to buy them, especially as used vehicles. Now electric cars are much more of ‘a thing’, the demand for used EVs has shot up and they are retaining their value a lot better.

If you're looking to make the switch from petrol but are worried about the price of a brand-new car, second-hand electric cars could be a great affordable option.

Are electric cars nicer to drive?

Electric cars actually perform better than petrol or diesel cars, in terms of power, torque and acceleration. They might not go as fast or far as combustion engine cars, but EVs feel great to drive, thanks to their heavy batteries and low centre of gravity.

Can I get a government grant for an electric car?

Another benefit of buying an electric car is that the UK government has a scheme in place to give you up to 35% off the price tag of qualifying electric vehicles, up to a maximum of £1,500.

You can also get up to 75% towards the cost of installing a charger at home through the electric vehicle (EV) chargepoint grant.

Not all low-emission vehicles will get a grant. Only vehicles that have been approved by the government are eligible.

Is electric car insurance cheaper?

In the past, electric cars have often been more expensive than petrol or diesel cars to insure due to the cost and availability of spare parts, and the common need for specialist repair works.  However, as more electric and hybrid vehicles have become available, and with the government’s 2030 impending ban on new petrol and diesel cars, the cost of electric car insurance is falling.

How does electric car production affect the environment?

Making electric cars does use a lot of energy. In fact, the emissions created during the production of an electric car tend to be higher than a conventional car. However, even after taking battery manufacturing into account, electric cars are still a greener option. This is because of the reduction in emissions created over the car’s lifetime.

Reusing and recycling batteries is a growing market, and it is hoped that new research will reduce the lifetime environmental impact of battery manufacture.

Is it worth switching from fuel to electric car right now?

Electric vehicles are becoming the ‘new norm’ for car users. Although EVs usually have higher upfront purchase costs, cheaper fuel and maintenance costs mean owners can save a lot on operating expenses. You can also feel good about doing your bit for the environment.

To give you a closer look, we have compared a hybrid, fully electric and petrol version of the Mini Countryman below. You can see that although the Mini Countryman Electric costs over £5,000 more than the petrol version, you save big on fuel, road tax and even insurance.

 

MINI Countryman Cooper Classic SE, Petrol 1.5

Petrol

MINI Countryman Cooper PHEV SE, 1.5

Hybrid

MINI Electric SE

Electric

Price to purchase car

£29,550

£33,500

£35,050

Official miles per gallon

(MPG)

43 MPG

118 MPG

161 MPG

Real world MPG

*

30.1 MPG

82.9 MPG

146.3 MPG

Indicative fuel cost

**

17p per mile

10.8p per mile

5.4p per mile

Road tax

– first year rate

£230

£0

£0

Road tax

– standard rate

£165

£155

£0

London congestion fee

£5

£0

£0

Ave cheapest annual insurance premium

Jan 21

£44.90

£549.87

£204.54

* Takes into account the actual MPG cars get when driven in real driving conditions such as adverse weather, city driving etc. ** Indicative fuel cost based on 21p KWH electricity unit price or 160p/ litre of petrol Premium based on average annual price quoted in rank 1 to 5 on MSM Comparison possible using nextgreencar.com/tools/comparison

Is electric car insurance cheaper?

In the past, electric cars have often been more expensive than petrol or diesel cars to insure due to the cost and availability of spare parts, and the common need for specialist repair works.  However, as more electric and hybrid vehicles have become available, and with the government’s 2030  upcoming ban on new petrol and diesel cars, the cost of insurance is falling.

There are many benefits of electric vehicles, including environmental, financial and performance. If you choose to make the switch, make sure you compare electric car insurance with MoneySuperMarket to get the best deal for you.

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