10 E-Cars Myths Debunked

Electric vehicles have been around for several years now. However, for most people, they remain the unicorn of the car industry. It is a mystical beast that we fail to understand fully. What, you say, charged cars that are driveable and practical exist for real? Surely not, this must be a mistake! Most of us continue to believe that electric vehicles will make a huge impact in the future. But we can’t fathom that they can be a smart investment today. Everyone has a good excuse not to buy an electric vehicle. However, most of our reasons are based on myths or misunderstandings. Here is what you need to know about EVs. 

#1. Choice is limited
Technically, the first electric vehicle released for individual use was developed in the late 19th century. Thomas Parker, the English investor behind electrifying the London Underground, built the first electric car in Wolverhampton in 1884. While the name may not ring a bell, Ferdinand Porsche designed and constructed a hybrid battery-powered vehicle in the early 20th century. While the history lesson could carry on for much longer, you can already guess the conclusion. Electric cars are not a novelty. They have been around for over 100 years, and therefore you can find a large selection of models, shapes, and manufacturers. Whether you are looking for a combi van or a city car, there are plenty of options for you to choose from. 

#2. They are expensive
Electric vehicles have a reputation for being unaffordable. However, it’s important to take all factors into account. Nowadays, you can find EVs to fit all budgets. The key when purchasing your vehicle is to start by setting a budget, regardless of whether you are looking for a fuel-powered or a battery-powered car. Your budget can highlight your choices, and help you define some criteria. For instance, if you have no intention of spending more £10k in a vehicle, you will need to look for second-hand cars. You can find cheap and practical used EVs from trustworthy dealers. Alternatively, you can tap into leasing deals, which let you drive a brand new vehicle without breaking the bank. Leased cars are useful if you have no intention of owning the car, and are happy to change it for another model at the end of your lease. What about brand new EVs? You can find plenty that will not cost more than brand new fuel cars, unless you opt for luxury vehicles. 

#3. Their batteries create pollution
Electric vehicles are praised for their low carbon gas emission rates. However, environmentally-conscious individuals may be concerned about battery recycling. Indeed, EVs may produce zero or close to zero emissions on the road, but how about the production and disposal of their main component, the battery? Former batteries posed a disposal issue. However, nowadays, EVs use advanced lithium-ion batteries that lose performance in 10 years, after which car owners need to replace them. These batteries are almost entirely recyclable; over 90% of the battery cells can be recovered for repurposing. With tech progress and the ban on sales of petrol and diesel cars by 2035, we can expect that the recycling process will continue to improve. The current Battery Directive stipulates that at least 50% of the battery needs to be recycled. Manufacturers have already achieved this result. As the commercial need for full battery reuse grows, the Battery Directive will adjust accordingly. In short, batteries create less pollution than they used to. 

#4. They can’t go far
Compared to fuel-powered vehicles, an electric charge does not cover the same distance than your fuel tank. The first reason is apparent. You will need many more batteries to convey the same performance than one fuel tank. Ultimately, your EV needs to remain safe and user-friendly. However, while you can’t drive for as long on a charge as you would on a full tank, the electric industry is working hard to pack as much distance as possible in batteries. The Tesla Model S can run up to 360 miles between charges, which is more than enough for weeks of daily commutes. The Jaguar I-Pace can drive almost 300 miles between charges, while the Audi E-tron covers 260 miles. You may not be able to drive through the country on a single charge; however, you don’t have to recharge your battery as often as you might think. 

#5. They are unattractive
Manufacturers are working hard on developing electric vehicles that fit in their range and aesthetics. Most car owners would not recognise a standard fuel-powered vehicle from an electric car. Hyundai, Kia, Audi, Nissan, and many others continue to develop models that reflect on the look and feel of the brand. Visually, electric cars look just as appealing as your traditional vehicles. Other makes, such as Tesla, are specialised in luxury models, making them elegant on the road. The only difference is the noise. An electric car is almost silent on the road, while a diesel or petrol engine will add to the current noise pollution. Ultimately, you can find a stylish model that meets your expectations. The idea that an electric car is no more than a battery on wheels is inaccurate. 

#6. You can never find a charger
We are used to seeing petrol service stations wherever we go. The UK doesn’t have as many charging stations at the moment. However, you can find updated maps online for the latest charge points. You can use the information to define the best itinerary. Additionally, private car owners can also install their own charger point at home. As an EV owner or buyer, you can benefit from dedicated governmental support to install a charge point: the EVHS, Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme. This can cover some of the installation and purchase costs, as long as you are eligible for the scheme. The EVHS also works with OLEV- certified installers and charging point units, which means that you can’t pick any device or electrician to get the work done. 

#7. I have to charge often
Another common worry for electric vehicle owners is the frequency of charge. You will need to charge the battery more often than you would refuel a petrol car. However, there is a considerable advantage for EV owners. In 2018, it would cost approximately £67 to fill your fuel tank. With price fluctuations under lockdown, car owners are spending comparatively less; however, the situation is likely to change again. On the other hand, charging your car battery could be free. Yes, you read correctly. If you charge your car at public locations such as the car park of a retail unit, you can typically charge your car battery for free for as long as you stay. Admittedly, you may face parking fines if the duration exceeds the maximum allowed parking time – typically 2 hours. More and more companies are also including charging points on their car parks, which are free to access for all employees and partners throughout the working hours. Home charging and rapid charging at motorway service stations come at a cost. But you can expect to spend under £10 for a home charge. Charging often doesn’t mean you are wasting money on the process. 

#8. Electric cars are expensive to run
It’s understandable to worry about running costs when you’ve never owned an electric vehicle. Currently, EVs are perceived as a costly investment. A comparative study of two cars from the sake manufacturer, one electric and one petrol-fueled, can highlight significant differences. In May 2020, experts compared 3 years of running costs for the electric BMW i3 and the petrol BMW 318i for 12,000 miles annual coverage. The results show that at a similar price, the brand new vehicles differ in fuel, tax, insurance and servicing expenses. The tax road doesn't apply to electric vehicles. Servicing and maintenance costs are also cheaper for EVs as few parts can break or require repair. The conclusion: battery-powered cars are cheaper to run. 

#9. They are slow on the road
It seems odd to worry about how fast a car can go on the road. With a maximum speed of 70 mph in the UK, worrying about speed becomes irrelevant. However, it’s crucial to compare fairly. Electric vehicles have the potential to be faster than gas cars with the same horsepower, aka they can reach their top speed more rapidly. This has to do with the build of EVs, as they have fewer moving parts, which means they can be more efficient. If you want to maintain a high speed over a long distance, fuel-powered vehicles are quicker to get to your destination point. But, electric vehicles are far from being slow on the road. 

#10. They take hours to charge
The slow charging process can take several hours. However, a rapid charge point will top up your battery in 20 to 30 minutes. Not as quick as filling up your tank, but when you consider the amount of free charging points, you can top up your battery while doing your shopping or being in the office. Does it matter how long it takes when you’re already busy? 

Hopefully, this can give you a better insight into EVs. After all, we all know the future is in battery-powered vehicles. It’s time to seize the opportunity and change your car for an environmentally-friendly and road-effective vehicle.