Electric Explained: FIVE things you need to know before you buy an electric car

#electriccars # #evs

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If you're thinking about going electric with your next cars and truck or a van you have actually probably got a few questions. Are we right? Idea so. Here at .com, we're addressing concerns all the time: from the complex ones about just how much money you might conserve, to the more surprising ones about whether you can drive an electric automobile in the rain. Yes, we really do get asked that.

Much as we like addressing concerns, we also like to remain one step ahead. The .com team has been driving electrical cars and trucks for many years now, and throughout that time we've found out a lot. So if you're preparing to go electrical at any time soon, sign up with Nicki as she explains the FIVE things you require to know prior to you buy an electrical vehicle.

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44 responses to “Electric Explained: FIVE things you need to know before you buy an electric car”

  1. Rebekka Ashmen Avatar
    Rebekka Ashmen

    Awesome video and thanks for your content🍑🍑🍑

  2. The Niki94 Avatar
    The Niki94

    nice video

  3. Mark D Larsen Avatar
    Mark D Larsen

    Good summary of what potential owners need to know. Funny thing, though, they rarely ask these questions, but tend to simply regurgitate their objections based on fossil foolish petrolganda (“Parking garages will collapse from their heavier weight!”) Derp! 🤪

    1. Bogey the Bear Avatar
      Bogey the Bear

      Case in point, my i4 has a curb weight of almost 4700 pounds. For a midsize car, that’s massive. That also happens to be the weight of the lightest model of Ram 1500 truck you could possibly get.

    2. Nick Foster Avatar
      Nick Foster

      @Bogey the Bear And has your I4 crushed any multi-storey carparks recently?

    3. Bogey the Bear Avatar
      Bogey the Bear

      I haven’t parked anywhere that couldn’t handle a everyday short-cab truck, no.

    4. Mark D Larsen Avatar
      Mark D Larsen

      @Bogey the Bear 

      Nissan LEAF – 3,509. Chevy Bolt – 3,589. Tesla Model 3 – 3,862. Hyundai Ioniq 5 – 3,968. Kia EV6 – 3,984. Volvo EX30 – 4,034. Nissan Ariya – 4,323. Ford Mustang Mach-E – 4,394.

      Toyota 4Runner – 4,400. Honda Odyssey – 4,482. Chrysler Pacifica – 4,521. Toyota Tundra – 5,095. Chevy Tahoe – 5,473. GMC Yukon – 5,490. Chevy Suburban – 5,616. GM Hummer – 9,063.

      Gonna ban ’em all from parking garages? Get outta here, pe’troll…!

  4. CharlieW Avatar

    My wife has recently bought a 4 year old Smart ForFour EQ with 22k on the clock. Coincidentally I have just come back from the Mercedes dealership who sold it to us after having a battery condition report done. I requested this myself. The report said that it still showed 96.6 % of the original capacity of when it was new. I was very pleased with this as it was above my expectations. They also checked each of the cells for good measure and they all passed. I had it done for peace of mind plus if I want to sell it in the future I have proof of condition.

    1. Reddylion Avatar


  5. John Siskin Avatar
    John Siskin

    For balance, total cost of ownership also includes insurance and depreciation. Unfortunately at the moment, insurance is much more expensive for all electric cars than an equivalent fossil fuel car. Depreciation on the other hand varies enormously but some evs can drop in value by over 40% in two years. On the plus side there are some really good value 2nd hand evs, which make owning an all electric ev great long term value.

    1. Barry PURKIS Avatar
      Barry PURKIS

      Many ICE cars also depreciate at an alarming rate, sometimes for no better reason than ‘Fashion’. To a large extent an owner needs to look at how long they plan to keep any car, we all know that every car loses thousands of pounds within hours of leaving the forecourt.

    2. Michael Goode Avatar
      Michael Goode

      EV depreciation seems to have settled in to a similar pattern to fossil cars so no issue there. As for insurance costs: not in my experience. If you are tempted to spend much more to buy a flashy EV then it will cost more than a regular vehicle but this is the case with fossil cars too.

    3. David Lewis Avatar
      David Lewis

      Insurance will only get worse as they are written off more easily. I guess home insurance will be impacted as more homes get destroyed by charching/faulty ev’s.

    4. John Siskin Avatar
      John Siskin

      @David Lewis I don’t agree with you on both your points sorry. The insurance situation will improve when insurance companies have more data on claims, but until then it looks like they are milking ev owners. I would not worry about home insurance premiums if I was you, unless you live on a flood plane.

  6. Mr Mawson Avatar
    Mr Mawson

    Cheers love for the tip

  7. Rupert Bear Avatar
    Rupert Bear

    trust me when I say that your number 1 consideration should be establishing where will you be charging? home or public network and if public network, before you buy, physically visit everyone of the chargers near your home at different times of the day to establish your chances of actually finding a working charger that is reasonably available – trust me, living in an upstairs flat without the ability to have a home charger and being fully reliant on the public network puts you in an extremely vulnerable position and means that you will likely be sat at in your car, in all weathers, at weird times of the day and night, for at least an hour, one or more times a week (after first driving around trying to find a working and available one)

    1. superbantam523 Avatar

      100% agree. I’ve had one for over 2 years now and have a home charger. I wouldn’t recommend anyone buying one without being able to charge at home. Too costly and if free usually not working from what I’ve seen.

    2. ingatestone100 Avatar

      Or you could look for people that have a Home charger which you could use for a small payment within walking distance of where you live ?

    3. superbantam523 Avatar

      @ingatestone100  you seriously think that’s an answer. Someone letting you park up at there house for hours and hours while it charges.

  8. John Lennon’ Ghost Avatar
    John Lennon’ Ghost

    What scares me about electric cars…?

    I bought a 2021 Kia Niro, EV and I loved it in the beginning; very cheap to charge, save money on buying gas, and low maintenance!

    Here’s my problem:

    20 months (21,000 + miles) into buying this new experiment in my life, the battery went out and had to be replaced. And I know the dealership told me it was “the first one to happen in the Midwest (of the United States) for a Kia vehicle“.

    Where the electric car is not practical is, if my car would not have been under warranty, the price to replace a battery is ridiculous!!!

    I paid $38,000 for this car (brand new) and to replace the battery cost a total of $44,000 ($32,000 for the battery and $12,000 to install it).

    Until they figure out that little problem, it is worthless to buy a car, and keep it past any warranty!!! That’s why, I plan on selling this car, before the warranty is final!!!

    1. Malph Avatar

      That’s a very expensive fuel tank! I wonder how much it would cost to replace an electric motor (engine)..?

    2. Barry PURKIS Avatar
      Barry PURKIS

      I suspect that there is an element of profit taking involved by dealers. I believe the swap time for a Battery pack for a Nissan LEAF is less than 3 hours (including Tea breaks) If the Battery really cost $32k the car would not have been viable to sell. Again I suspect massive mark ups by the dealer.
      Maybe one of the businesses involved in EV repairs could comment.

    3. Bogey the Bear Avatar
      Bogey the Bear

      Mind you, the warranty replacement meant you didn’t have to factor in the trade-in value of the defective battery. After all, you’re not just going to _give away_ a literal half-ton of lithium and precious metals, right?

    4. John Lennon’ Ghost Avatar
      John Lennon’ Ghost

      @Barry PURKIS, they had my car for 6 weeks, to replace the battery!!! Everything was done at the Dealership…I paid nothing for the replacement, because it was under warranty.

    5. Barry PURKIS Avatar
      Barry PURKIS

      @John Lennon’ Ghost I understand the warranty bit, but where do the prices you quoted come from?

  9. Rhian Taylor Avatar
    Rhian Taylor

    I winced when you said “don’t worry if you cannot charge at home…” yes you can make it work but you will pay up to 7 times as much per kwh

    1. superbantam523 Avatar

      Cannot stress enough I’ve got a home charger, but anyone who hasnt or can’t do not buy electric.

  10. Malph Avatar

    You made a huge understatement when you said “there’s room for improvement” with the charging infrastructure. It’s absolutely rubbish in the UK, and I think you know it! My nearest charger is 10 miles away and it’s 7KW. I have a petrol station 1/4 mile away and another 3 within 5 miles. It takes me 5 minutes to refuel to a range of nearly 600 miles which lasts me a month……unless I’m visiting family, a 300 mile round trip (without having to ‘recharge’), then the tank lasts ‘just’ a couple of weeks.

    1. DavidT Avatar

      Serious question, do you have electricity at home? Do you have off street parking? If not the latter then I understand and wouldn’t recommend an EV.

    2. Malph Avatar

      @DavidT Yes I do. But why would I get rid of my perfectly good petrol car (which someone else will buy and continue to use) at great cost to me, for an EV that will depreciate at a ridiculous rate, then spend another bunch of money on installing a home charger that would probably require expensive modification to my domestic electrics, and the EV will just be more inconvenient and unsuitable to my lifestyle and the way I use a car.
      EVs are fine for some people but not others. If you want one, have one, but don’t force one on me as a solution to a problem that doesn’t exist. The climate might be changing, but we are not the cause.

    3. DavidT Avatar

      @Malph I’m not forcing, I don’t care what anyone else drives. Just addressing the issue of lack of charging for you. You have electricity at home, just plug in, there’s no requirement to have a 7kWh EVSE.
      But as you say, if your happy, just continue as you are, everyone has their own situation, budget and wishes. Do what works for you. 😉

    4. Malph Avatar

      @DavidT Apologies if I came across a bit curt. The whole issue rotates around badly thought through, unachievable Government mandates. As you say, if an EV suits the way you live your life, then fine have one….but they’re certainly not for everyone, and that’s the way it should stay.

    5. DavidT Avatar

      @Malph Totally agree. We had a Leaf back in 2015 to 2017. Great little runabout for the city shuttle but a road tripper it was not.
      We’re got various vehicles but added an EV last year again for several reasons, financial not being one of them. We’re just on our way back from touring Switzerland which has been absolutely awesome but I don’t like the factions that exist, it’s too polarising and each has benefits and disadvantages. My daughter recently tried an Ora Funky Cat, loved the car but I advised her to stick with her petrol DS3. She owns it outright and Ora Cat is at least £10k over priced. There’ll be plenty of future choice for her generation when things have matured (hopefully)
      In time things will be worked out naturally I think.
      No worries on tone, I’m used to it 😉

  11. max holland Avatar
    max holland

    Not all of this is sensible information.

    If you can’t access a regular plug, either at home or at work, then you will be paying through the teeth (~70p per KWh) for electricity at public chargers, making the fueling cost for an EV about the same as a combustion car, with little hope to recoup the higher purchase cost. The only exception is if you have very cheap (or even free) slow chargers near your home or work, but these are rare as hen’s teeth. Public chargers might get more competitive pricing in the future, but who knows when. The good news is that at least 60% of UK drivers do have access to a regular plug, either at home or at work.

    If you drive at least a thousand miles per week – and you DO have access to a plug at home – this is exactly when BEVs (at least those with 250+ miles of range so that you can do almost all your charging at home) *make the most sense*, saving thousands of pounds on fuel per year!

    A PHEV is exactly the WRONG choice in this situation, since they are typically going to do only 25 or 30 miles on electric and are thereafter MORE fuel hungry than a modern modest combustion car when doing steady motorway driving over very long distances. The break even point is likely journeys of around 100-150 miles – if you daily drive more than that, a PHEV may end up costing you more in fuel than a traditional engined car.

  12. superbantam523 Avatar

    Need to include tyres in the cost. Had 4 new ones put on a year ago at MOT. Had MOT last month front 2 need replacing in next few months.

  13. superbantam523 Avatar

    Only someone who has access to home charging would say don’t worry if you don’t have it.

  14. John Moulton Avatar
    John Moulton

    The insurance on our new iqonic 5 was the same as our VW golf

  15. OldManTony Avatar

    There are a lot of companies out there who rip off owners with service charges for electric cars.

  16. Steven Jones Avatar
    Steven Jones

    Pay way more to buy, insurance and “fuel” than the equivalent petrol or diesel if you can’t charge at home and then get clobbered by the depreciation when you try to exit. Nobody wants to buy a 10 year old laptop or phone and they sure as hell aren’t going to want a 10 year old BEV.

  17. Steven M Avatar
    Steven M

    I’ve had my electric car for 2 months. It’s lovely to drive.

  18. GamingWins Avatar

    Public charging is doable, I did it for nearly a year, but it’s a bit of a nightmare. The amount of crap apps, unreliable chargers, the amount that are out of order and the sheer number of EV drivers there are now, plus having to pay around 72p per KWh it makes running the car so much more expensive, especially in winter. Home charging is a game changer though.

    1. Keith Livingstone Avatar
      Keith Livingstone

      How much to have a wall box installed?

    2. GamingWins Avatar

      @Keith Livingstone I think about £600 or so, but I have a 3 pin charger because I’m in a rented house.I gain back what I’ve lost over night from my commute, so it’s not been a problem for me.

  19. D C Avatar
    D C

    Just Today reading some Motorway Service Operators have EV charging installed without actually having them Connected as there is insufficient capacity already in the Power Generation System, EV’s are laughable compared to an ICE vehicle they simply can’t get near the Flexibility.

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