12m drivers plan to go electric within 2 years

Written by Lori Campbell on 3rd Sep 2020

A massive 12 million drivers in the UK want to swap their diesel or petrol car for an electric vehicle (EV) within the next two years, reveals a new study. 

Owning an electric vehicle could save motorists £8 billion in fuel costs – £329 a year for the average driver – compared to the cost of running a petrol or diesel vehicle (based on typical annual mileage), the research by comparison site Uswitch.com found.

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It comes as a major new report finds that electric vehicles have “significantly lower impacts” on the climate – including Co2 emissions, resource use, energy consumption and air pollution – over their life cycle than those powered by fuel.

Energy bills

Although switching to an EV and charging it at home increases energy bills, it works out cheaper than filling up on petrol or diesel, according to the analysis.

Charging an electric vehicle at home adds an average of £30.90 a month to household electricity bills, or £370 a year. Meanwhile, drivers of petrol and diesel vehicles spend an average of £74.86 on fuel a month, or £898 a year, according to Uswitch. When adjusted for average mileage, electric vehicle owners save £27.48 a month compared to fuel.

Rising popularity

The popularity of electric vehicles is on the rise with 4.3 million drivers (11 per cent) saying they plan to buy an electric vehicle in the next two years. An additional 7.6 million motorists (19 per cent) are “considering” making the move.

Registrations of new electric vehicles also grew to a market share of 4.6 per cent in March — the highest proportion of sales ever recorded in the UK for battery-powered cars. This is expected to grow sharply in the next few years as motorists prepare for a total ban on all diesel, petrol and hybrid vehicles from 2035. 

EV owners are advised to ensure they are on the cheapest fixed energy deals available to them, as charging at home is usually cheapest. Motorway charging points are capable of delivering enough electricity to drive 100 miles in just half an hour – but this will cost about £6.50, compared to £4.15 on average with a 7KW wall charger at home. 

Cost per mile

Uswitch.com analysed the prices of new EVs and their cost per mile to calculate which cars provide the biggest cost savings over an average eight-year warranty period. The compact Renault Twizy came out on top, costing only 1.61 pence per mile, and a total of £11,745 including the purchase price after eight years.  

 

10 of the ‘best-value’ electric vehicles

Model

Price

Range 

(miles)

Cost per mile (pence)

Overall cost after eight years

Renault Twizy

£10,995

62

1.61

£11,745.63

Skoda Citigo e iv

£17,455

170

3.54

£19,106.54

SEAT Mii

£19,800

160

3.76

£21,554.76

Citroen C-Zero

£20,520

93

2.81

£21,832.58

Smart fortwo

£20,195

78

3.69

£21,916.50

Smart fourfour

£20,680

75.5

3.81

£22,458.51

DS Automobiles DS 3 Hatchback

£22,120

180

4.54

£24,239.27

Volkswagen e-Up!

£23,555

159

3.32

£25,104.87

Mini Hatch

£24,900

145

3.68

£26,615.30

MG Mg Zs

£25,495

163

4.47

£27,577.87

In April, Skoda was forced to withdraw its Citigo from sale due to high demand, but it plans to increase production of the popular EV now coronavirus restrictions are lifting.

Meanwhile, although Tesla is one of the best-known EV brands and its cars boast some of the best ranges, Uswitch.com found they are among the most expensive vehicles to own. 

 

10 of the most expensive electric vehicles

Model

Price

Range

Cost per mile (pence)

Overall cost after eight years

Kia Soul

£34,295

280

3.7

£36,038.86

BMW i3

£36,025

185

3.4

£37,592.12

Tesla Model 3

£40,490

254

3.2

£41,992.85

Audi e-tron

60,650

193

6.0

£63,464.57

Mercedes EQC

£64,925

259

5.1

£67,281.57

Jaguar I-Pace

£65,195

292

5.0

£67,546.52

Tesla Model s

£77,980

379

4.3

£79,993.03

Audi e-tron Sportback

80,650

241

6.4

£83,657.44

Tesla Model X

£82,980

314

5.2

£85,409.74

Porsche Taycan

£83,367

188

6.9

£86,581.08

 

Sarah Broomfield, energy expert at Uswitch.com, said: “Electric vehicles are becoming increasingly popular, and 12 million drivers could soon be swapping their petrol or diesel car for a more environmentally-friendly one.

“The good news for these drivers is that EVs come with an additional financial benefit too – they cost far less to fuel than a petrol or diesel car. 

“However, charging costs can vary depending on your energy tariff. If you are still on your supplier’s Standard Variable Tariff, charging your car could cost an additional £7.69 a month unless you switch to a more competitive fixed-term deal.”