Should I get an electric car over a petrol, diesel or hybrid car?
There’s no denying it, the future is electric.
With the sale of petrol and diesel cars banned from 2030, and hybrids banned from 2035 we’ll all be driving electric cars in the near future. The switch has only been accelerated by huge price rises in the cost of both petrol and diesel over the past year.
The UK government recognises the role that electric cars have to play in the decarbonisation of transport. Over the last few years, the government has been supporting the uptake of electric cars through incentives like the home charging scheme and the plug-in vehicle grant.
If you’re considering which car to get next, here are the top reasons why you should choose an electric car over a petrol, diesel or hybrid car.
One of the cheapest ways to make the switch to electric driving is to take a car through salary sacrifice. You can make savings of up to 40% when you get a brand new electric car via your employer.
Electric cars have lower fuel costs
One of the major benefits of switching to an electric car is that the cost of fuel is much lower than in a petrol or diesel car. Petrol will cost you on average 20.1p per mile. Considering that most petrol cars drive 6,300 miles a year that’s an annual cost of £1,272 per year.
Hybrids are more fuel-efficient than petrol or diesel cars, but they’re still not as cheap to run as electric cars. With a hybrid, you’ll have to pay for both charging and fuel. Hybrids are the worst of both worlds for fuelling, and many people regret buying them over an electric car.
Electric car drivers can benefit from specific EV energy tariffs like Octopus Go, to take advantage of super off-peak green energy in the middle of the night. Drivers get 4 hours of cheap energy at a rate of just 2p per mile. You can plug in at night before you go to bed and wake up with a topped up battery in the morning. The cost of driving the UK petrol average of 6,300 miles on electric using our tariff works out at just £126 for the whole year. That’s a massive saving of more than £1,000 a year compared to petrol!
If you don’t have a home charger you can take advantage of the 50,000 charging connection points across the UK and charge on the public network using lamp post chargers for an average cost of 5p per mile. If you want some real-life examples of how public charging works, check out our team’s top tips for charging on the public network.
Electric cars give great acceleration and performance
Electric cars focus over 80% of their energy on moving the car forward, which is much more than petrol or diesel counterparts. Electric cars don’t have loud, hot, noisy internal combustion engines (ICE) which take up most of the energy produced by the fuel in the tank. In fact, an ICE car only uses between 12 - 30% of the engine’s energy to move the car forward. Electric cars are far more efficient and have a much simpler design. They don’t need to shift through gears when they accelerate which means they get from 0 - 60 much faster. This makes electric cars a great choice for drivers who love the thrill and experience of driving.
Our customers now have the choice of 50 cars with a range of over 150 miles on a single charge. When you consider that we only drive an average of 20 miles a day, it’s clear that EVs offer plenty of range and choice for most drivers.
Electric cars boast the latest technology
Electric cars boast some of the most impressive technology on the planet. You don’t need to be technically minded to be blown away by the experience of driving an electric car, and most people are wowed by how innovative electric car technology is.
Technology is making leaps and bounds all the time. Almost all major car manufacturers have committed to creating their own electric models, so there will soon be something to suit everyone's taste and plenty of makes and models to choose from.
Battery production came down in cost by 89% between 2010 - 2020 making it possible to get more affordable electric cars with great range. These technological advances make electric cars the best option for the future of transport.
Zero road tax on electric cars
Road tax is calculated by the amount of CO2 tailpipe emissions the car produces. All petrol, diesel and hybrid cars are required to pay road tax.
Electric cars don’t have a tailpipe, so they don’t produce any tailpipe emissions at all. This means you don’t pay any road tax. Another great saving when you drive electric!
Government plug-in grant available for electric cars
Electric cars are eligible for a low emissions government grant of £1,500 off the price of a brand new car. This grant is available to cars that produce zero tailpipe CO2 emissions and can travel at least 70 miles without any emissions at all. There are no hybrid cars that currently meet the criteria for the plug-in grant, it’s only available on electric cars. This discount is passed on to drivers directly through EV dealers and manufacturers.
No charges to drive in Clean Air Zones in electric cars
Air in our cities is horribly polluted. In Britain, over 40,000 people die each year from exposure to outdoor air pollution which contributes to a number of health challenges.
London was the first area to introduce an Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) in 2019, charging any driver that entered the zone in a car £12.50 per day.
A number of other cities in the UK have clean air zones (CAZ) including Bradford, Bath, Oxford, Portsmouth and Birmingham.
Glasgow, Aberdeen, Bristol, Dundee, Sheffield and Newcastle are planning to follow suit in 2022.
Driving into any of these Clean Air Zones in an ICE car that doesn’t conform to Euro standards (Euro 4 for petrol and Euro 6 for diesel) will cost you a daily charge, or a fine if you don’t pay the charge on time. In Scotland, you’ll automatically get a fine if you enter the Clean Air Zones as emissions producing vehicles are not allowed to enter. If you drive an electric car you don't have to pay any charges or fines in these areas.
Driving into London in an electric car will save you a lot of money. Electric cars are exempt from paying the Ultra Low Emissions Zone charge and London Congestion Charge. To get free access to the London Congestion Charge Zone you need to register your car online at an annual cost of just £10. It costs £15 each time you enter the Congestion Charge zone in an ICE or hybrid car.
Most of the new Clean Air Zones are starting in 2022 so now’s the perfect time to switch to electric to avoid these extra costs which can stack up quickly.
Drivers can get tax relief when they choose an electric car
If you use a company car you’ll pay a Benefit in Kind (BIK) tax on the employee benefit. Petrol and diesel cars can attract a BIK rate of up to nearly 40%.
When you choose an electric car as your company car, the BIK rate is just 2% from April 2022 and capped there until 2025.
This makes switching to an electric car your most tax-efficient option, and if you can access this benefit directly through your gross salary with a salary sacrifice scheme you’ll save up to 40% Income Tax and National Insurance payments.
So what’s the verdict?
Electric cars are the future. There are more electric makes and models than ever for drivers to choose from, a growing public charging infrastructure, government grants in place to give you access to great savings and tax benefits that come with driving electric.
Electric cars aren’t just for early adopters. They’re for everyone.
You can access a brand new electric car through your employer with our salary sacrifice scheme. It’s totally free for employers to set up and run, and offers a brilliant employee benefit to attract and retain the best talent.