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Why the UK’s Drivers are Reluctant to Switch to Electric-Powered Vehicles

Renault ZOE

The UK government is working hard alongside car manufacturers to increase the number of electric-powered vehicles on the road. In a bid to lower carbon emissions and decrease the effect fossil fuels are having on the environment, they’re offering great incentives for drivers to make the switch to a greener car.

However, it seems UK motorists aren’t convinced electric cars are the best option. Below, we’ll look at some of the main reasons drivers are reluctant to switch to electric powered vehicles.

Misconceptions over cost play a significant role

In a recent electric vehicle survey conducted by Ovo Energy, UK drivers revealed one of the main things holding them back from switching to electric powered vehicles is the potential costs involved.

While initially, the cost of buying an electric vehicle can be more expensive than a diesel or petrol model, the long-term costs are certainly cheaper. The UK government has also extended its “Plug In” grant until March 2018, which provides up to £4,500 to pay towards the cost of new electric or hybrid models. Terms and conditions do apply however, and not all models will be applicable.

Top auto manufacturer Nissan has also revealed plans to offer free electric vehicle power using a bi-directional charging technology. To make this possible, the company has partnered with Ovo Energy.

The main misconception over the costs of running an electric-powered vehicle is that they’ll be expensive to run. The reality is that they could actually work out four times cheaper to drive. They also benefit from free road tax, providing you don’t invest in one of the higher-end models, worth over £30,000.

The worry over charging stations

Another major factor holding back the electric vehicle revolution is the worry over charging stations. Did you know there’s actually a significant number of charging stations available – 13,629 to be exact. There’s also around 600 additional points being added across the country each month. At the rate new charging stations are being added, they’re expected to overtake the number of petrol stations available as early as 2020.

There’s also a worry over how quickly the battery will charge and how long it will last. Running out of power and being unable to reach a charging station is one of the main anxieties over electric vehicles that drivers listed in the recent survey. However, when you take into account how many charging stations there are, it’s unlikely drivers would ever be in that position.

As for how long the battery takes to charge, if drivers use a ‘Public Rapid’ DC or AC charging station, it could take as little as 30 minutes to get the battery 80% charged. Via a home box it would take 4-8 hours.

Overall, many of the concerns over electric cars do appear to be down to misconceptions over cost and charging stations. However, electric-powered cars may not be as expensive as drivers think, and they may even be less expensive than diesel models to both buy and run.