• Getting your first electric vehicle - what questions do you have and need to know?

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    If you’re thinking about buying or leasing your first electric vehicle you may have lots of questions.


    Things like the car’s range, how to charge it, how do the pedals work!

    Nissan is loaning a Leaf 2 to Pure Planet for a week.

    I want to use this opportunity, as someone who has never driven an EV before now, to answer any questions you may have about them.

    We’ve already got some great discussions about EVs and hybrids in the community. I'll be posting lots of threads about driving the Leaf 2 in about 10 days from now.

    I’ll be driving the Leaf 2 to work, to the shops, and I’ll take it for a longer trip. Fingers-crossed I don’t run out of electricity on the side of a motorway…

    Some of the things I want to know before I take delivery of the Leaf is things like how I’ll charge it, and for how long, do I need a special charger?

    I'm sure you guys will have more questions!
    So now’s your chance to ask anything you ever wanted to know about driving an EV.
    Community Manager - Pure Planet

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  • Name:  Colourful light trails on a road.PNG
Views: 1247
Size:  462.6 KB


    If you’re thinking about buying or leasing your first electric vehicle you may have lots of questions.


    Things like the car’s range, how to charge it, how do the pedals work!

    Nissan is loaning a Leaf 2 to Pure Planet for a week.

    I want to use this opportunity, as someone who has never driven an EV before now, to answer any questions you may have about them.

    We’ve already got some great discussions about EVs and hybrids in the community. I'll be posting lots of threads about driving the Leaf 2 in about 10 days from now.

    I’ll be driving the Leaf 2 to work, to the shops, and I’ll take it for a longer trip. Fingers-crossed I don’t run out of electricity on the side of a motorway…

    Some of the things I want to know before I take delivery of the Leaf is things like how I’ll charge it, and for how long, do I need a special charger?

    I'm sure you guys will have more questions!
    So now’s your chance to ask anything you ever wanted to know about driving an EV.
    Community Manager - Pure Planet

  • Hi, are you supporting the electricity buy back from e.v's over nite where the charge is taken back into the grid? If so could you give me some figures, it's for my Farther who may consider switching to you if you do : )
    Last edited by Buster; 27-07-18 at 12:49. Reason: Bits missing, whoops.
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  • Hi, are you supporting the electricity buy back from e.v's over nite where the charge is taken back into the grid? If so could you give me some figures, it's for my Farther who may consider switching to you if you do : )
  • Hello,
    As far as I know, nobody supports this yet and it will need a special car charger a V2g one according to vehicle to grid, it looks to be about £8000 with revenues of £300-400 back a year,Personally, I’d rather sit with a full battery ready to go, than use a charge cycle selling it back to the grid,
    Tim
    2
  • Hello,
    As far as I know, nobody supports this yet and it will need a special car charger a V2g one according to vehicle to grid, it looks to be about £8000 with revenues of £300-400 back a year,Personally, I’d rather sit with a full battery ready to go, than use a charge cycle selling it back to the grid,
    Tim
  • As an EV owner since 2014 I will happily answer questions too. I have 2 EVs: the Leaf has done 40k miles and the Tesla has done 60k miles. I just spent 5 days driving around Europe racking up 3k miles in the Tesla. Zero fuel cost!!!! Could not avoid the tolls though - think only Norway has toll exempt bridges etc for EVs.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Vehicle to grid is very niche. Only working with Nissans and has to use the CHAdeMO connector. Some trials are ongoing, but more a case of watch this space. As battery sizes get bigger it will become more valid. See this video (there is also a similar video featuring Laura from Pure Planet on this YouTube channel). https://youtu.be/qLE2SrDNPZc
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  • As an EV owner since 2014 I will happily answer questions too. I have 2 EVs: the Leaf has done 40k miles and the Tesla has done 60k miles. I just spent 5 days driving around Europe racking up 3k miles in the Tesla. Zero fuel cost!!!! Could not avoid the tolls though - think only Norway has toll exempt bridges etc for EVs.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Vehicle to grid is very niche. Only working with Nissans and has to use the CHAdeMO connector. Some trials are ongoing, but more a case of watch this space. As battery sizes get bigger it will become more valid. See this video (there is also a similar video featuring Laura from Pure Planet on this YouTube channel). https://youtu.be/qLE2SrDNPZc
  • Thanks Brunel, very informative as I’m such a novice to all this

    - - - Updated - - -

    Marc, as a total novice, as I said, I’d like to ask couple of basic (but important) questions re your borrowed Leaf.


    So, how do the pedals differ to a manual petrol vehicle?


    What is the comfort factor like (driver and passengers, front and back), once you’ve had it for the week?


    Lastly, how does insurance fair in comparison to petrol?


    Told you they were basic, but interested to know. Thanks!
    Peace is always beautiful.

    WALT WHITMAN
    2
  • Thanks Brunel, very informative as I’m such a novice to all this

    - - - Updated - - -

    Marc, as a total novice, as I said, I’d like to ask couple of basic (but important) questions re your borrowed Leaf.


    So, how do the pedals differ to a manual petrol vehicle?


    What is the comfort factor like (driver and passengers, front and back), once you’ve had it for the week?


    Lastly, how does insurance fair in comparison to petrol?


    Told you they were basic, but interested to know. Thanks!
    Peace is always beautiful.

    WALT WHITMAN
  • Marc, I am interested in how the week goes. In addition to questions already asked, I would like to know how closely actual performance compares with claims, I.e. range, charging time, cost to charge, etc.
    1
  • Marc, I am interested in how the week goes. In addition to questions already asked, I would like to know how closely actual performance compares with claims, I.e. range, charging time, cost to charge, etc.
  • Hello,
    Just thought I’d Mention the £35,000 interest free loan available in Scotland one more time,

    http://www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/...c-vehicle-loan

    For your first electric vehicle and £500 to top up the Olev grant for your charging point, gets you a Golf, Leaf or a Ionic, which are probably the best Evs out there at the moment,

    Tim
    3
  • Hello,
    Just thought I’d Mention the £35,000 interest free loan available in Scotland one more time,

    http://www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/...c-vehicle-loan

    For your first electric vehicle and £500 to top up the Olev grant for your charging point, gets you a Golf, Leaf or a Ionic, which are probably the best Evs out there at the moment,

    Tim
  • Hi Marc
    at this stage of EV infrastructure build, since you can't pop down to the local petrol station for a quick charge (well not that sort), it's likely you'll want to use an app to tell you where the nearest charge point is.

    I don't run an EV but I'm guessing that for those that do, an app (or some other means of planning charging) is essential. Does the car tell you where the nearest charge points are?
    A quick search throws up:
    OPENCHARGEMAP
    , PLUGSHARE , ZAP-MAP , ELECTRIC HIGHWAY

    also google maps is supposed to show EV charge points.

    Let us know if you try any of these or you find others worth looking at.

    Also a question for Brunel (or anyone else who knows), can you charge EV's other than Teslas at a Tesla point if you have an adapter or are they strictly for Tesla only?
    Last edited by woz; 29-07-18 at 15:08.
    1
  • Hi Marc
    at this stage of EV infrastructure build, since you can't pop down to the local petrol station for a quick charge (well not that sort), it's likely you'll want to use an app to tell you where the nearest charge point is.

    I don't run an EV but I'm guessing that for those that do, an app (or some other means of planning charging) is essential. Does the car tell you where the nearest charge points are?
    A quick search throws up:
    OPENCHARGEMAP
    , PLUGSHARE , ZAP-MAP , ELECTRIC HIGHWAY

    also google maps is supposed to show EV charge points.

    Let us know if you try any of these or you find others worth looking at.

    Also a question for Brunel (or anyone else who knows), can you charge EV's other than Teslas at a Tesla point if you have an adapter or are they strictly for Tesla only?
  • Quote Originally Posted by woz View Post

    Also a question for Brunel (or anyone else who knows), can you charge EV's other than Teslas at a Tesla point if you have an adapter or are they strictly for Tesla only?
    Tesla Superchargers are only compatible with Tesla cars. They tried to let other manufacturers use them for a few to help expand, but no-one wanted to!

    At hotels etc you may find Tesla Destination Chargers - Tesla gives these out free to businesses and usually one is Tesla only (red sign) but a couple are for other EVs (white sign).

    Insurance is fine for EVs (ignore newspaper scaremongering). Some Tesla Owners are paying £300! I pay £600 for the Tesla and £200-£300 for the Leaf.

    The bane of EV charging is the number of apps and memberships! Charge Your Car/Polar Instant around Bath should work for Marc. Look out for PodPoint - loads of free charging, but need the app to log a charge or it will turn off after 15mins. I used one of these at the open-air car park in Bath when I visited Pure Planet.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Bev View Post
    Thanks Brunel, very informative as I’m such a novice to all this

    - - - Updated - - -



    So, how do the pedals differ to a manual petrol?

    Interested in Marc’s view as a newbie, but basically the same as an automatic car as no clutch. However, the brakes hardly get used as the regen slows down the car, the new Leaf has e-pedal functionality that will stop the car without touching the brake by gradually lifting off accelerator. I have never changed brake pads and my Leaf is 7 years old!
    1
  • Quote Originally Posted by woz View Post

    Also a question for Brunel (or anyone else who knows), can you charge EV's other than Teslas at a Tesla point if you have an adapter or are they strictly for Tesla only?
    Tesla Superchargers are only compatible with Tesla cars. They tried to let other manufacturers use them for a few to help expand, but no-one wanted to!

    At hotels etc you may find Tesla Destination Chargers - Tesla gives these out free to businesses and usually one is Tesla only (red sign) but a couple are for other EVs (white sign).

    Insurance is fine for EVs (ignore newspaper scaremongering). Some Tesla Owners are paying £300! I pay £600 for the Tesla and £200-£300 for the Leaf.

    The bane of EV charging is the number of apps and memberships! Charge Your Car/Polar Instant around Bath should work for Marc. Look out for PodPoint - loads of free charging, but need the app to log a charge or it will turn off after 15mins. I used one of these at the open-air car park in Bath when I visited Pure Planet.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Bev View Post
    Thanks Brunel, very informative as I’m such a novice to all this

    - - - Updated - - -



    So, how do the pedals differ to a manual petrol?

    Interested in Marc’s view as a newbie, but basically the same as an automatic car as no clutch. However, the brakes hardly get used as the regen slows down the car, the new Leaf has e-pedal functionality that will stop the car without touching the brake by gradually lifting off accelerator. I have never changed brake pads and my Leaf is 7 years old!
  • Quote Originally Posted by Brunel View Post
    Interested in Marc’s view as a newbie, but basically the same as an automatic car as no clutch. However, the brakes hardly get used as the regen slows down the car, the new Leaf has e-pedal functionality that will stop the car without touching the brake by gradually lifting off accelerator. I have never changed brake pads and my Leaf is 7 years old!
    I have to show my ignorance here, with e-pedal enabled (is it a selectable feature?), is the way it decelerates different from when it's not enabled?
    Is the difference that regenerative braking, when not using e-pedal, only occurs when you touch the brake pedal, but when using e-pedal it brakes regeneratively but more softly when you lift off the 'go' pedal (I cant use the word throttle because strictly speaking it isn't a throttle anymore)... or have I gone off in ever increasing circles?
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  • Quote Originally Posted by Brunel View Post
    Interested in Marc’s view as a newbie, but basically the same as an automatic car as no clutch. However, the brakes hardly get used as the regen slows down the car, the new Leaf has e-pedal functionality that will stop the car without touching the brake by gradually lifting off accelerator. I have never changed brake pads and my Leaf is 7 years old!
    I have to show my ignorance here, with e-pedal enabled (is it a selectable feature?), is the way it decelerates different from when it's not enabled?
    Is the difference that regenerative braking, when not using e-pedal, only occurs when you touch the brake pedal, but when using e-pedal it brakes regeneratively but more softly when you lift off the 'go' pedal (I cant use the word throttle because strictly speaking it isn't a throttle anymore)... or have I gone off in ever increasing circles?
  • Quote Originally Posted by woz View Post
    I have to show my ignorance here, with e-pedal enabled (is it a selectable feature?), is the way it decelerates different from when it's not enabled?
    Is the difference that regenerative braking, when not using e-pedal, only occurs when you touch the brake pedal, but when using e-pedal it brakes regeneratively but more softly when you lift off the 'go' pedal (I cant use the word throttle because strictly speaking it isn't a throttle anymore)... or have I gone off in ever increasing circles?
    Most EVs have different settings for regen. I like as much as I can get. E-pedal is new and is a button next to the seat I think. The other settings on the Leaf allow some regen by lifting off your foot and then automatically blending stronger regen and friction brakes when you press the brake pedal. Tesla is different as brake pedal is pure friction. When I went over the Swiss, French and Italian mountains it was great gaining range going down...I almost got the same range as the other side of the mountain!

    Different EVs also have different stationary behaviours: some will creep like a petrol car with no accelerator, but I turn that off with the Tesla so it is completely stationary when no pedals are touched.
    1
  • Quote Originally Posted by woz View Post
    I have to show my ignorance here, with e-pedal enabled (is it a selectable feature?), is the way it decelerates different from when it's not enabled?
    Is the difference that regenerative braking, when not using e-pedal, only occurs when you touch the brake pedal, but when using e-pedal it brakes regeneratively but more softly when you lift off the 'go' pedal (I cant use the word throttle because strictly speaking it isn't a throttle anymore)... or have I gone off in ever increasing circles?
    Most EVs have different settings for regen. I like as much as I can get. E-pedal is new and is a button next to the seat I think. The other settings on the Leaf allow some regen by lifting off your foot and then automatically blending stronger regen and friction brakes when you press the brake pedal. Tesla is different as brake pedal is pure friction. When I went over the Swiss, French and Italian mountains it was great gaining range going down...I almost got the same range as the other side of the mountain!

    Different EVs also have different stationary behaviours: some will creep like a petrol car with no accelerator, but I turn that off with the Tesla so it is completely stationary when no pedals are touched.
  • Some great questions so far @Buchlyviebill @Bev @woz
    Also nice one for jumping in too @Brunel - really interesting observations. I guess driving it will take some getting used to.
    The Leaf 2 is being delivered next Monday. Can't wait!
    One thing that's just occured to me, is whether there is any specific roadside breakdown assistance out there? Do the AA or RAC have quick chargers in their vans that they can use if an EV driver runs out?
    Community Manager - Pure Planet

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  • Some great questions so far @Buchlyviebill @Bev @woz
    Also nice one for jumping in too @Brunel - really interesting observations. I guess driving it will take some getting used to.
    The Leaf 2 is being delivered next Monday. Can't wait!
    One thing that's just occured to me, is whether there is any specific roadside breakdown assistance out there? Do the AA or RAC have quick chargers in their vans that they can use if an EV driver runs out?
    Community Manager - Pure Planet

  • Hmmm some interesting points on here.
    What would AA do if i ran out of juice,i presume tow me to nearest charge point will check that one out..
    With the big oil companies getting in on the charging game (BP/CHARGEMASTER) I dont think it will be long before they will use their vast fortunes to buy out other companies and expand their networks,so hopefully by the time i go electric charge points will be common place and universal.hadnt even considered that they were not universal.
    Egen i too never heard of that,
    Myself i think in a short space of time even hybrid will become a thing of the past, personally i think they are popular out of fear/lack of knowledge on how and ability to charge up.
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  • Hmmm some interesting points on here.
    What would AA do if i ran out of juice,i presume tow me to nearest charge point will check that one out..
    With the big oil companies getting in on the charging game (BP/CHARGEMASTER) I dont think it will be long before they will use their vast fortunes to buy out other companies and expand their networks,so hopefully by the time i go electric charge points will be common place and universal.hadnt even considered that they were not universal.
    Egen i too never heard of that,
    Myself i think in a short space of time even hybrid will become a thing of the past, personally i think they are popular out of fear/lack of knowledge on how and ability to charge up.
  • Nissan have their own recovery service and if you run out of electric will flatbed you home or to a rapid charger. RAC did trial battery packs, but not enough demand.

    - - - Updated - - -
    @Marc I bet you will enjoy being front of the queue at traffic lights and flooring it up to the speed limit - the torque and immediate acceleration is addictive!
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  • Nissan have their own recovery service and if you run out of electric will flatbed you home or to a rapid charger. RAC did trial battery packs, but not enough demand.

    - - - Updated - - -
    @Marc I bet you will enjoy being front of the queue at traffic lights and flooring it up to the speed limit - the torque and immediate acceleration is addictive!
  • Quote Originally Posted by Brunel View Post
    @Marc I bet you will enjoy being front of the queue at traffic lights and flooring it up to the speed limit - the torque and immediate acceleration is addictive!
    Thanks @Brunel the thought hadn't even crossed my mind.....
    Great to hear they've got their own recovery service.
    Wonder when there'll be enough demand for the RAC to bring them back. Two years' time? Less?
    I guess on one hand there's the increase in EVs on the road, and on the other increased battery life and range
    Community Manager - Pure Planet

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  • Quote Originally Posted by Brunel View Post
    @Marc I bet you will enjoy being front of the queue at traffic lights and flooring it up to the speed limit - the torque and immediate acceleration is addictive!
    Thanks @Brunel the thought hadn't even crossed my mind.....
    Great to hear they've got their own recovery service.
    Wonder when there'll be enough demand for the RAC to bring them back. Two years' time? Less?
    I guess on one hand there's the increase in EVs on the road, and on the other increased battery life and range
    Community Manager - Pure Planet

  • @Marc - there may be a need for mobile fast charging via breakdown services, but I do expect flat-bed to nearest rapid charger will cover most use cases, especially once BPChargemaster, Ionity and others deploy their super-fast chargers in more locations.

    Similarly,the concept of battery-swap stations has gone away now range is increasing as standard and because rapid charging is fine (Tesla canned their concept in LA & an Israeli start-up went silent). I do wonder if battery swap might become useful for HGVs....steady charge load of batteries that then get swapped in 10 mins...becomes attractive under battery leasing models and other service models for businesses.
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  • @Marc - there may be a need for mobile fast charging via breakdown services, but I do expect flat-bed to nearest rapid charger will cover most use cases, especially once BPChargemaster, Ionity and others deploy their super-fast chargers in more locations.

    Similarly,the concept of battery-swap stations has gone away now range is increasing as standard and because rapid charging is fine (Tesla canned their concept in LA & an Israeli start-up went silent). I do wonder if battery swap might become useful for HGVs....steady charge load of batteries that then get swapped in 10 mins...becomes attractive under battery leasing models and other service models for businesses.
  • Hi @Buster @Timco @Brunel @Bev @woz @Buchlyviebill @Jon1 @Sallyent

    The Leaf 2 arrived yesterday. First thoughts in this thread over here.
    Think I've answered some questions that @Bev and @woz had
    More to come, and I'm loving it so far
    Community Manager - Pure Planet

    1
  • Hi @Buster @Timco @Brunel @Bev @woz @Buchlyviebill @Jon1 @Sallyent

    The Leaf 2 arrived yesterday. First thoughts in this thread over here.
    Think I've answered some questions that @Bev and @woz had
    More to come, and I'm loving it so far
    Community Manager - Pure Planet

  • I'm entirely sold about getting an EV. We've taken active steps to enable our home environment so it can work (e.g. arranging off-street parking).

    90% of the days in the year an EV just works without any range issues (i.e. we would charge overnight at home). Now, for the rest of the 10% days we will hire something interesting. Works out cheaper overall, more equipment for the daily car and much wider car experiences (I love driving).

    Research into the EV world also got us interested in green energy and then Pure Planet (from watching the Fully Charged videos).
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  • I'm entirely sold about getting an EV. We've taken active steps to enable our home environment so it can work (e.g. arranging off-street parking).

    90% of the days in the year an EV just works without any range issues (i.e. we would charge overnight at home). Now, for the rest of the 10% days we will hire something interesting. Works out cheaper overall, more equipment for the daily car and much wider car experiences (I love driving).

    Research into the EV world also got us interested in green energy and then Pure Planet (from watching the Fully Charged videos).
  • Hi @ohit1
    Welcome to the Pure Planet Community!
    Nice one for getting stuck in.
    Great to hear you're hooked on EVs. After a week of testing I've got a Leaf on order!
    I agree with you that 90% of journeys will be short and simple. I hadn't thought about hiring another vehicle for the longer journeys. Good shout, I'll look into that too.

    What kind of EV are you getting btw?
    Community Manager - Pure Planet

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  • Hi @ohit1
    Welcome to the Pure Planet Community!
    Nice one for getting stuck in.
    Great to hear you're hooked on EVs. After a week of testing I've got a Leaf on order!
    I agree with you that 90% of journeys will be short and simple. I hadn't thought about hiring another vehicle for the longer journeys. Good shout, I'll look into that too.

    What kind of EV are you getting btw?
    Community Manager - Pure Planet

  • Hi, Interesting thread. Can I just chuck in my experience of a 2 year lease of the BMW 330e Plug-in Hybrid EV.
    I'm leasing through my work scheme because the 330e was available for a great price, largely due to the 9% BIK.
    I'm also helping to save the planet just a little. OK - I realise to really make a difference I should just buy a bicycle but let's move on!
    It's a lovely car, as most new cars are nowadays, and it's also spectacularly cheap to run. My employer is considerate enough to provide free charging points, as are Sainsbury's and many of Newcastle City Council car parks. Between them I can do my daily 10 mile commute literally for months for free (if you disregard the lease cost).
    There are however downsides. There aren't that many charging points and it's quite common for them to be broken. If I do longer journeys there are large areas of the UK devoid of any EV charge points.
    The Government's £500 grant for home charger installation was not that useful to me. I was quoted £1000 in addition to the grant and suspect the installation companies have just put their prices up to swallow up the "free" money. I've never bothered having one installed instead relying on the 13Amp charger supplied, and it takes about 4 hours to fully charge.
    As it's a PHEV and not a full EV the car only does about 16 miles electric travel.
    The boot is quite small as compromises have been made to fit in lots of batteries.
    My previous Electric company supplied Economy Seven and I always charged the car off-peak. Pure Planet doesn't do Economy Seven and, although the sums currently work out in my favour, I do wonder if charging the car any time of day, as I now do, is the best thing.

    However - having enjoyed, and become a complete convert to, electric cars I am now in the process of buying my own - a new Kia Niro PHEV. Again - my observations on this.
    I like PHEVs as I'm not quite convinced I could take the stress of driving a long journey and looking for the charge point.
    My first choice would have been a Golf PHEV but the VW dealer told me they had had so many orders they had now "closed the order book".
    Similarly the Mini Countryman PHEV - the dealer said the nearest for a test drive was 300 miles away.
    Then we came upon the Kia Niro - considerably cheaper (use carwow.com to find the "real" price)and the dealer could give me a test drive. In brief - we liked it and it meets our current needs so I ordered one. Now I find the 12 weeks delivery time has turned into 16, possibly even 20. Frankly I despair, but fortunately I have another car to fall back on for now.

    So to summarise - I think electric cars are the future but it's not quite here yet. There's pros and cons. Buy one with your eyes open and you'll be OK!
    2
  • Hi, Interesting thread. Can I just chuck in my experience of a 2 year lease of the BMW 330e Plug-in Hybrid EV.
    I'm leasing through my work scheme because the 330e was available for a great price, largely due to the 9% BIK.
    I'm also helping to save the planet just a little. OK - I realise to really make a difference I should just buy a bicycle but let's move on!
    It's a lovely car, as most new cars are nowadays, and it's also spectacularly cheap to run. My employer is considerate enough to provide free charging points, as are Sainsbury's and many of Newcastle City Council car parks. Between them I can do my daily 10 mile commute literally for months for free (if you disregard the lease cost).
    There are however downsides. There aren't that many charging points and it's quite common for them to be broken. If I do longer journeys there are large areas of the UK devoid of any EV charge points.
    The Government's £500 grant for home charger installation was not that useful to me. I was quoted £1000 in addition to the grant and suspect the installation companies have just put their prices up to swallow up the "free" money. I've never bothered having one installed instead relying on the 13Amp charger supplied, and it takes about 4 hours to fully charge.
    As it's a PHEV and not a full EV the car only does about 16 miles electric travel.
    The boot is quite small as compromises have been made to fit in lots of batteries.
    My previous Electric company supplied Economy Seven and I always charged the car off-peak. Pure Planet doesn't do Economy Seven and, although the sums currently work out in my favour, I do wonder if charging the car any time of day, as I now do, is the best thing.

    However - having enjoyed, and become a complete convert to, electric cars I am now in the process of buying my own - a new Kia Niro PHEV. Again - my observations on this.
    I like PHEVs as I'm not quite convinced I could take the stress of driving a long journey and looking for the charge point.
    My first choice would have been a Golf PHEV but the VW dealer told me they had had so many orders they had now "closed the order book".
    Similarly the Mini Countryman PHEV - the dealer said the nearest for a test drive was 300 miles away.
    Then we came upon the Kia Niro - considerably cheaper (use carwow.com to find the "real" price)and the dealer could give me a test drive. In brief - we liked it and it meets our current needs so I ordered one. Now I find the 12 weeks delivery time has turned into 16, possibly even 20. Frankly I despair, but fortunately I have another car to fall back on for now.

    So to summarise - I think electric cars are the future but it's not quite here yet. There's pros and cons. Buy one with your eyes open and you'll be OK!