Surging fuel prices mean buying an electric car finally adds up

Drivers are increasingly turning away from diesel and gasoline vehicles as rising fuel costs accelerate the switch to electric vehicles.

Rising prices mean it now costs almost £98 to fill a typical petrol tank and almost £102 to fill a typical diesel tank. Electricity costs have also skyrocketed in recent months, but battery-powered cars remain considerably cheaper to run.

Electric cars still cost thousands of pounds more to buy than their petrol or diesel counterparts, have shorter ranges and take longer to charge. But with the cost of living crisis putting pressure on household finances, are the scales starting to tip in their favor?

It comes as accounting firm EY said last week that almost half of all buyers in the UK are now looking for battery-powered cars. This was an increase from just 21 percent two years ago.

How long does it take to save?

Electric vehicles are significantly more expensive than their diesel or gasoline counterparts due to the cost of lithium-ion batteries. However, battery sizes have decreased over the years, reducing overall costs.

Coupled with rising fuel costs, this means the time it takes to recoup the difference between an electric vehicle and a petrol car has decreased significantly.

Last year, when both electricity and petrol prices were much lower, it would take just over a decade of fuel and road tax savings to close the cost difference between a mini electric vehicle and its petrol equivalent, the Mini One, the company said consumer group which ?.

The Mini EV was around £864 cheaper to run than the petrol each year, but cost £9,395 more to buy.

Today a Mini 3-door, the cheapest petrol version available, costs £22,565 and would cost the average driver £1,430 a year in fuel.

A Mini Electric, the cheapest electric version, costs £29,500, around £6,935 more than the petrol equivalent.

However, it would cost the average driver £958 less each year, meaning the cost difference would be evened out in just over seven years, dropping to just over six years when road tax is factored in.

It’s generally slightly more expensive to insure an electric car than a petrol or diesel vehicle, according to broker Aston Lark, but costs are coming down.

Electric vehicle insurers charge less for certain models. Insurer LV said both an electric Renault Zoe and Nissan Leaf were 8 per cent cheaper to insure than their petrol equivalents last year. Surging fuel prices mean buying an electric car finally adds up

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