Motoring costs seem to be spiralling no matter what kind of vehicle you drive, with both the cost of rapid charger pay-as-you-go and petrol and diesel prices all recording increases. However, comparatively, drivers should be aware that the EV still come out on top and can reduce their vehicle ownership costs.
Although the chaos that surrounded the fuel crisis is beginning to fade, paying for petrol or diesel can still be painful if you have a traditional combustion engine car. A 55-litre vehicle - a standard size for the average family car, has increased 24% for the cost of petrol in just a year. Once upon a time, not that long ago, you could have filled the car from empty to 80% and spent just under £60. Now the same amount will cost you just shy of £75, which is a bitter pill to swallow.
Although there has been a rise in the cost of pay-as-you-go subscription charging, the figures are not as shocking. On the same size car as above achieving an 80% charge has risen from around £18 to almost £23. However, when compared to the cost of driving the petrol engine, calculations show that electric cars incur a charge of 10 pence per mile, whereas currently, petrol cars sit at 19 pence per mile and diesel at a whopping 21 pence per mile, making the cost of driving electric almost half that of a traditional engine.
The cost of charging an electric vehicle at home can be even cheaper because rates for using electricity overnight are often less than the day rates. So, the most cost-effective way of owning an electric car would be to have a charging point at home. Of course, we understand that this is not possible for everyone. Still, even if you have to rely on public chargers, the figures above demonstrate the benefits of electric vehicles rather than fuel sources such as diesel and petrol.
So Why is Public Charging More Expensive?
There are many reasons why using pay-as-you-go charging is more expensive. First of all, these chargers are always going to form part of a profit-making business, so the provider needs to cover their costs and still make money. Secondly, there is a vast difference in the VAT levy for a business compared with a domestic dwelling. So, if you can charge at home, household electricity is subject to 5% VAT. Companies will have to pay 20%, which is a big difference. So, the FairCharge campaign is hoping to convince the Government to change this and set the two rates the same at 5%. They rightly point out that this anomaly throws a spanner in the policy of switching to clean energy.
Finally, to support drivers, the RAC has created Charge Watch, which will help to educate drivers on the public charging network and the charges that are levied to remove any confusion. There is no doubt that electric vehicles will bring savings to every driver, even those that cannot charge at home.