With the government pushing for all new cars and vans sold in the UK to be fully electric by 2035, they’re hoping that the uptake in EV ownership will continue to increase over the next few years as people realise the relative advantages of electric cars. However, some people remain reluctant due to a lack of knowledge regarding the costs associated with driving an EV and the concern it may well end up hitting their pockets harder than petrol and diesel alternatives.
An electric car can actually be more economical than a traditional combustion engine, but it can require some management. Here, we take a look at what the average spends on charging an EV would be and offer some tips on how to keep those down.
Although they can vary from region to region and depending on your supplier, according to the latest Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy data, average UK electricity prices per kwh were 18.9p for 2021. With this in mind, it would mean the cost of charging a 60kWh electric car for 200 miles of range would be between £11.00 and £12.00.
Below is a table of popular EV choices and a rough calculation* of how much they would cost to fully charge at home, at this rate. You can calculate the cost to fully charge an electric car by using the formula:
Tariff x Battery size / 100 = Cost to fully charge
Please note that electricity prices remain incredibly volatile right now. The table above is a snapshot in time so please ensure you review the cost to charge your vehicle based on your own Tariff rates
Keeping your car above 20% charge where possible will be beneficial to your pocket and to the longevity of the battery. The first and last 20% of power in the battery take longer to charge thus increasing your expenditure. By keeping the car between 20-80% you save on the extra time that the charging would take, and many cars will let you set at what point you want them to stop charging
Smart charging apps, and other devices, can help you track your EV’s battery charge, when the best and most cost-effective time to charge at home is, and also help you to get insights into your car’s usage. This can help you in choosing the right electricity tariff for you and being smart about when you charge can save you money. Many car manufacturers now include an app of their own with their EVs and some let you set the time of day you wish your car to charge, and even for how long.
Charging stations are no longer an uncommon sight around the UK so you’re not often left asking yourself, ‘Where can you charge an electric car?’ However, you’ll most likely have to pay for the privilege of using these. The canny EV driver will be aware that there are some places that offer free charging stations though, and you can take advantage of these with a bit of forward thinking.
For example, many bigger supermarkets now offer free charging points in their car parks while you are on their premises, so timing your next charge with your weekly shop could be a good idea. Likewise, some EV manufacturers have their own networks of charging stations on which they offer a cheaper rate of charging. Certain attractions and hotels also offer a free charging service, as do a handful of workplaces whilst in parts of the UK, predominantly Scotland, there are a handful of free charging stations available for public use.
With the UK government still trying to encourage people to switch to EVs there are plenty of incentives to help ease the cost of getting one. For example, there is a scheme in place to help subsidise the cost of installing a home wall-box, which provides rapid charging for your car. There are also grants to help with the cost of the car as well as road tax savings and lease schemes that let you pay from your salary before tax, so it’s well worth looking into what is available to you. Workplaces can also get grants for installing charging points as well as tax breaks on their electricity.
Time of Use Tariffs are a really great way of making sure the electricity you use for charging your EV is significantly cheaper, as well as having the added benefit of being more environmentally friendly. Time of Use Tariffs, such as GEUK’s TIDE Tariff, provide a lower cost of electricity when used at off-peak times, so if you are on TIDE and set your car to charge during off-peak times, the savings can be significant. Its not just the meter or the app that are smart, you can be too.
Plus, if more people were to use energy during off peak times, this would go a long way to taking pressure off our energy infrastructure during peak times – thus increasing the efficiency of our networks and ensuring we don’t have to fire up coal plants to meet excessive demand.
TIDE is designed for people who understand that being sustainable can also be economical if you’re prepared to modify your behaviour. To learn more about our TIDE tariff, click here.
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