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How much does an electric car cost?

As of 2021, electric car prices in the UK are generally higher than the prices of equivalent petrol or diesel-driven cars, although as the demand for electric cars increases, electric car prices are expected to fall.

There is also a growing amount of help available for electric and hybrid car buyers, with the government implementing measures such as electric car grants and incentives for hybrid cars to help mitigate the price of an electric vehicle.

However, it’s worth considering the total cost of owning an electric car to give yourself an idea of how much an electric car actually costs.

The true cost of owning an electric car

Even with the government’s plug-in grant, the price of an electric car can seem steep compared to its petrol or diesel-driven equivalent. But when you offset the up-front cost of an electric car against the lifetime cost of ownership, it’s a different story. 

The cost of charging your electric vehicle

The cost of charging an electric car is generally much cheaper than filling up with petrol or diesel, saving up to £41,000 in lifetime costs. However, as electric cars become more widespread, higher demand may well increase electricity costs. Conversely, as more savings are made on switching to renewable energy sources for the home, worrying about the cost of charging your vehicle will become a thing of the past     

Charging your electric car on an off-peak tariff will bring costs down even further.

Special tariffs for electric car owners like EDF Energy’s GoElectric are beginning to appear and are likely to become more common as the popularity of electric vehicles rises. In another saving on charging costs, you can get up to 75% off the cost of installing a smart charge point on your property (subject to suitability) under the Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS).

The cost of running a hybrid car

For those looking for the value found in an electric car but are worried about its range, a PHEV (plug-in hybrid)  car may be an option. 

The cost of running a hybrid car can be much cheaper than that of a standard ICE (internal combustion engine) vehicle. A PHEV engine will make the most of electric charging points like an electric vehicle, but when the battery becomes depleted it will switch over to the ICE.

Electric car tax

The International Council for Clean Transport (ICCT) published a study in late 2018 which showed that electric cars are already cheaper to own and run than petrol and diesel-driven vehicles. 

The ICCT study analysed the combined purchase, fuel and tax costs of battery electric, hybrid, petrol and diesel versions of the same model in five European countries (UK, Germany, France, Netherlands and Norway). In each country, the pure electric vehicle was seen to be cheaper than its petrol and diesel equivalent. The difference between a pure electric and diesel car was 5% here in the UK, rising in Norway to 27% (where electric cars are exempt from a heavy registration tax).

The report concluded that using a vehicle taxation policy to incentivise the purchase of electric cars would significantly accelerate the reduction in vehicle CO2 emissions. 

Savings for a hybrid vehicle

Buying a hybrid car also saves you money on tax, since a hybrid vehicle is subject to smaller road tax payments than a standard petrol or diesel engine. 

For example, ultra-low emission vehicles such as the DS 7 Crossback E-Tense, Citroën C5 AIRCROSS SUV Hybrid and the Peugeot 3008 SUV Hybrid will not have to pay congestion charge when driving in and around London. And as if that wasn’t enough, its combination of plug-in and ICE engine battery charge means you can enjoy an extended mileage for less cost.

Flex & Free now available

Flex & Free gives customers the flexibility to change their car more frequently. Based on a standard Contract Hire agreement, but with the flexibility to change vehicle from the 6th month, without penalty (subject to condition and mileage).

Electric car servicing

Compared to petrol or diesel driven cars, electric vehicles have fewer moving parts. That means there’s less to go wrong and less to spend on repairs, replacement parts and service items such as oil, filters, gaskets etc. 

A 2018 study by automotive data specialists Cap HPI found that the maintenance and servicing costs of an electric car were on average, 23% lower over a three year/60,000 mile period.

Growing demand for electric cars should mean lower prices

With manufacturers working hard to meet the growing demand for electric cars, prices are very likely to come down over time. Stellantis itself has pledged to deliver a pure electric and/or hybrid version of every one of its models by 2025. 

Look out for updates on new, electric Citroën, DS Automobiles and Peugeot models over the coming months.