Rising fuel prices, higher parking rates in cities, congestion charges – all are costs the average motorist is increasingly concerned about.
According to MoneyExpert, the cost of driving is expected to ‘rocket’ under fuel tax rises which will come in at the beginning of next year.
According to consumer watchdog Which? the 3p fuel tax hike is contributing the number one worry for UK households – rising fuel costs.[YouTube:vUEYgksHeb0]
But is the answer the electric car?
This week, Perrys Motor Sales will be asking that very question with a series of guides, blogs and analysis articles on the electric car and its relevance to the UK market.
Sales of the Nissan Leaf, the UK’s first realistic, mass-produced electric car, have doubled in 2012 and the government’s £5,000 plug-in car grant has brought prices down across the board.
An influx of exciting new electric cars such as the Renault Zoe supermini, Renault Fluence saloon and partial electric cars such as the Vauxhall Ampera extended-range electric vehicle, have all contributed to the burgeoning segment.
But the doubts remain; electric cars tend to have a range of just 100 miles between charges that can last up to eight hours and those without a garage or path will have to trial cables across the public pavement.
There is also the perception electric cars will offer poor residual values and tend to be ugly, with faux-futuristic designs and basic interiors.
The current range of electric cars available at Perrys Motor Sales is significantly different from this perception. For example, the likes of the Renault Zoe come with a chameleon charger capable of fitting to any charger and fast-charging the car in significantly quicker time.
With a design based on the new Renault Clio, it looks great, as does the new Vauxhall Ampera, a premium hatchback that can sit alongside more executive models and not look out of place.
Then there’s the sleek Renault Fluence, a four-door saloon based on the likes of the Laguna in terms of design but with zero tailpipe emissions.
Electric cars also offer low running costs, including free road tax and exemption from the London congestion charge. Future-proof, electric cars will not be hit by changes to emissions-based road tax bands because they offer zero tailpipe emissions.
And, as electric cars can be charged at night, it can take advantage of lower electricity tariffs, leading to even lower running costs.
Keep an eye out on Perrys online magazine this week, where we’ll be looking at the best electric cars on sale and covering everything else you need to know about driving a greener vehicle.