Buying your first EV
In 2019, EVP wrote a blog that served as a guide to buying your first EV (electric vehicle).
However, we feel it is a good time to update the guidance available to our readers.
Since 2019, there have been significant developments in the technology available to electric vehicle (EV) drivers. This blog aims to outline the growth in technology since our last piece.
In 2021, there were more EV registrations than there were in the five years prior. However, EV registrations seem to be booming again, as the table below shows.
Buying your first EV – suitability
Before purchasing an electric vehicle, the first thing you should consider is whether an electric vehicle is suitable for you.
The two key aspects influencing a potential buyer are the mileage they generally travel and the ability to charge an electric vehicle.
Individuals may believe that they are suited to an EV as their mileage is too high. However, there are two key factors that may have changed this prospect:
Constant improvements in EV range
Over time, the technology being used in EVs is improving. For example, in 2019, the Tesla Model S had a maximum range of 335 miles using the WLTP efficiency test. Using the same test, the 2022 model has a maximum range of 405 miles. While this represents the very top end of the market, it does show how much the battery technology has improved. Also, at the University of Michigan, individuals are trying to develop a solution which may allow lithium-sulphur batteries to be used in EVs. Lithium-sulphur batteries have the capacity to enable vehicles to travel 5 times further than their lithium-ion counterparts.
Increasing the range of vehicles should ease range anxiety in individuals, which is currently one of the biggest barriers to EV adoption. Range anxiety is where a driver becomes nervous that they will become stranded during a trip, as their battery has run out and they have been unable to charge their vehicle.
There is more information about the vehicles available below.
Changes in travelling habits following Covid-19
The Covid-19 pandemic has had several impacts on our daily lives. One key aspect is the changes in travel habits, and more specifically, our working habits.
As more individuals move to either a work from home or hybrid working model, the requirement to travel longer distances has been reduced. This is particularly true for those individuals who would travel for meetings, which now tend to take place online.
As such, these people for whom an EV would previously not have been suitable, may now be able to have an electric vehicle.
Another major barrier to EV adoption is the accessibility to charge points.
Before purchasing an EV, you must consider where you plan to charge the vehicle. There are three places where you can charge your vehicle.
Home charging is arguably the most ideal place to charge your vehicle. The EV can be plugged in overnight, so it is fully charged and ready for the next day. Charge points can be installed against a wall or off a post.
However, the main difficulty with this is the driver requires space to charge the vehicle. Namely, a driveway, or a parking spot with an EV charger if you are in a block of flats.
Although there is technology in development to assist those who do not have access to a charger, outlined below.
The second option for charging your EV is at the workplace.
The workplace is a logical place to charge your EV, as you will typically be there for around 8 hours a day – easily long enough to charge your vehicle.
While not all workplace car parks have charge points, there is a great opportunity for an employer to promote their green agenda by installing infrastructure.
On the roads
Finally, EV drivers can use the ever-expanding UK public charging network.
According to Zap-Map, in 2019, there were 16,971 EV chargers available to the UK public. At the time of writing, there are 29,531 public chargers available. This represents an increase of nearly 75%. If there can be this much growth in less than three years, when nearly two of those years have been heavily impacted by Covid-19, it is exciting to think about how many charge points will be available in five years time.
What vehicles are available?
Electric vehicle choice is constantly evolving and improving. From hatchbacks to large SUVs, there is an option for you. There are even electric pickup trucks to come in 2022!
The vehicles below are just some options available: