A Guide to Electric Car Leasing in 2021

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The adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) gained significant ground in 2020, and the trend is set to continue in 2021. Everywhere you look there are adverts and news stories about EVs, the technology, the charging stations and the release of hot new models by some of the biggest car manufacturers in the world. 

Electric cars are here, and they are already changing the way we drive. At the end of last year, over 70% of British motorists said they were now considering an EV, with the desire to lower their emissions as the main driver behind their decision. 

With the latest in motorcar technology, significantly reduced running and maintenance costs and the ever-growing incentives, is it time that you went electric? Picking up an EV leasing deal may be the best way to sample life with an electric car. 

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Concerns about EVs

Most of us have valid concerns about the ownership of an EV. Here is a quick look at those concerns before we get started on the benefits of driving an EV. 

What Mile Range Can an EV Achieve?

The mile range of an EV is wholly dependent on the model you decide to drive, and you will need to research the particular EV you are considering. 

As a guide, here are some examples of what mile ranges to expect on current EVs from a full charge of their battery. These are tested averages, which all come out slightly less than the mile ranges advertised by the manufacturers.

Hatchbacks

  • Volkswagen e-Golf: 100-120 miles
  • Nissan Leaf: 160-240 miles
  • Hyundai Kona: 200-300 miles

Saloons

  • Tesla Model 3: 250-350 miles
  • Hyundai Ioniq: 180-195 miles
  • Polestar 2: 260-290 miles

SUV 

  • Jaguar I-PACE: 260-300 miles
  • Tesla Model X: 300-315 miles
  • Mercedes EQC: 250-300 miles

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Are There Enough Charging Stations in the UK?

As of January 4th 2020, there are 13,270 locations and 36,522 charging points in the UK. 

Between 2017 and 2019, the total number of connectors almost doubled and continues to increase as more people uptake EVs around the country. There is also a greater number of rapid and ultra-rapid charging points now being installed. 

A rapid charger can typically charge an EV by 80% within an hour. Ultra-rapid chargers can do it even quicker.

The distribution of charging points is still focussed within the South of the UK with over 25% of all charging points located in Greater London, but this is changing. 

You can find a huge amount of up to date information about EV charging points at Zap-Map.

Do I Need to Install a Charging Point at My Property? 

It would certainly be beneficial as you would be able to charge your vehicle overnight, but it is by no means necessary and for some, just not practical. Public charging points located at public car parks, office car parks and other public spaces give EV owners the ability to charge while running errands or working.

Just like a petrol or diesel car, you don’t need to fill (fully charge) your vehicle each time. You can charge for any amount of time to give yourself some extra juice.

Is an EV Any Cheaper to Run Than My Current Car?

Research so far has found that an EV is cheaper than a conventional vehicle during its entire life cycle. While EVs may be more expensive to buy or lease right now during their initial launch years, they make up for this extra expense in savings on fuel, tax, maintenance and repairs. 

Charging your vehicle is much cheaper than filling with petrol or diesel. Due to fewer moving parts, an EV is less likely to break down and less expensive to service and MOT. There are also multiple incentives to take advantage of that further lower the costs, which we will discuss further down the page. 

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The Benefits of Leasing an Electric Vehicle

Leasing an EV may be the most cost-effective and simplest way to sample EV ownership. 

Try Before You Buy

Currently, EVs are not cheap to buy outright. They typically cost more than their petrol or diesel counterparts, but you can find some good deals on EV leases. Therefore, taking an EV out on a lease for a couple of years could be a great way to see what life with an EV is like and whether you would like to own one. 

Leasing comes without the typical risks of ownership. So if you don’t like the vehicle, you can simply return it once the contract has ended. In the years during your lease, prices will have dropped, allowing you to buy an EV at a much lower cost than if you bought one today. 

Save on Running Costs

EVs are much cheaper to run than petrol, diesel or hybrid vehicles. The average cost of electricity per kWh in the UK is currently 14p. The average EV on the road can travel 3.5 miles per kWh. That means 100km would cost you around £4, which is about 4p per mile. 

  • EV:  4p per mile
  • Hybrid car: 5-8p per mile 
  • Petrol car (up to 1.8L): 10.3p
  • Diesel car (up to 1.4L): 11.4p

Not only are you able to save on fuel, but you can also benefit from lower maintenance costs due to fewer moving parts. Annual servicing and MOTs are worry-free and cost less too. Most leasing companies will provide you with maintenance as part of your contract to give you peace of mind. 

Take Advantage of Incentives

As with all new promising technologies, the government has created several incentives to help the general public adopt EVs. So far, these include:

  • Zero road tax for electric cars that cost less than £40,000. 
  • £3,000 government plug-in car grant.
  • £350 government home-charging scheme.
  • Exemption from vehicle excise duty and exemption from the London congestion charge (until 2025).
  • Commercial leases on electric cars are not subject to any benefit-in-kind tax (until April 2021). 

These incentives were likely responsible for the 90% increase in electric vehicle leases in 2020. 

Reduce CO2 Emissions

A recent survey of UK motorists found that the most significant appeal of owning an EV was the ability to reduce their CO2 footprint and help do their bit for the environment. EVs are a great way to reduce your CO2 emissions as they have zero to minimal tailpipe emissions, making them far less harmful than a petrol or diesel car.

A typical passenger vehicle will emit around 4.5 metric tonnes of carbon dioxide per year. One of the leading causes of CO2 emissions in Europe is transport, of which passenger cars play a significant role. 

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How Much Does an Electric Car Lease Cost?

Leading deals on EVs typically start around £160 p/m for hatchback models like the Vauxhall Corsa and Nissan Leaf. Lease deals on Tesla’s typically start around £400 p/m. An eclectic SUV can cost anywhere from £600-£1000 p/m depending on the manufacturer and model you choose. 

Monthly costs are generally more expensive than EV’s petrol and diesel counterparts, but the running costs more than make up for this expense. Leasing costs are expected to fall again this year and will continue to do so as EVs become increasingly popular and the industry more competitive.

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