A new study says that £5 worth of fuel—be it petrol, diesel, or electricity—goes almost twice as far in electric vehicles (EVs) than it does in petrol and diesel vehicles and, if you buy a bus or train ticket for £5, your mileage distance will only be a fifth of that travelled by an EV.
After finding that one in five drivers thinks EVs are more expensive to run than other types of vehicles, the car-buying platform, carwow did some research to work out the cost-per-mile of an average EV. They say EV drivers get around 40-50 more miles out of their cars than petrol and diesel owners.
Going the distance
The study, that used both regional electricity prices and regional petrol and diesel prices and calculated the car journeys based on normal driving conditions took the Volkswagen e-Golf and worked out the cost (per kilowatt-hour) of charging its batteries, calculated how far the car would travel before it needed recharging, and found it would travel about 102 miles.
They then compared the figures of the e-Golf against comparable petrol and diesel Golf models, taking into account their mpg statistics. They found £5.00 would take the diesel Golf 56.5 miles, while with the same cost of unleaded, the petrol model would travel 49.6 miles.
The carwow study then compared public transport distances, costing £5 (converted from euros for Dublin), out of 10 major cities and found that the fare would take you 20 miles via train and just 12.6 miles travelling by bus.
From London, £5 would take an EV as far as Worcester or Bristol, while a diesel car would only get to Oxford or Winchester, and a petrol car would only get to Basingstoke, Milton Keynes, or Bedford. Spend around £5 on a bus or train ticket and you won’t get far from the M25.
Matthew Watson, Editorial Director at carwow, said:
‘Some people might be surprised to see that you can travel pretty much double the distance in an electric car than you can with diesel or petrol, but you can’t argue with the data.’
The company, who hopes their research helps prospective buyers ‘adopt the new technology rather than write it off in favour of traditional choices’, said people need more education about electric cars, their ‘benefits and their feasibility’.
Mr Watson said the choice to move to an alternative fuelled vehicle ‘will be a personal one, depending on where you live and how much local investment there has been to infrastructure as the roll-out has not been even,’ though he said progress is happening fast.
Earlier research by motoring review website Parkers supports carwow’s findings. In an October article, they looked at the top 10 best-selling, most efficient electric, petrol, and diesel cars, comparing how far a pound of fuel would take each car. Calculating the distance in miles per pound (mpp), they reported that, for the same fuel cost, the EVs could travel around three times further than the petrol or diesel models.
Keith Adams, Editor of Parkers, said:
‘We created miles per pound as a way of demystifying the running costs of electric vehicles because above and beyond their range, and how long they take to charge, there is little uniformity in how carmakers express just how much energy these cars use.’
In Parker’s research, the first edition Kia e-Niro and the Renault Zoe 65kW, went the furthest, with each travelling a remarkable 33.1 mpp of electricity with Tesla’s Model 3 coming in at third place with 32.3mpp.
In comparison, Parkers found the most economical version of the Ford Fiesta—the top-selling car in the United Kingdom—was around four times as expensive to run than the EVs, with only 9.3mpp.
‘Taking fuelling costs into account, monthly costs for internal combustion engine cars and electric vehicles are much closer than the gap in list price might suggest. ‘While it’s easy to be put off at the price of an electric car when you look at it from a monthly costs perspective the prospect is all the more attractive.’
Vehicle running costs aren’t the only thing you need to consider when trying to decide whether a car is affordable for you. EVs are more expensive to buy than their petrol or diesel equivalents. After the £3,500 plug-in grant, the e-Golf costs £27,575, while the entry-level petrol model costs £23,340, and the diesel costs £25,585.
Electric vehicles often cost more to insure, not only because they’re more expensive, but because insurance companies have little experience insuring them yet, as the government continues to place tighter restrictions on petrol and diesel cars, EVs will become more common and so, cheaper to buy, reducing their insurance costs.
And, if you own a pure EV, you’re exempt from paying car tax (from next year there won’t be any company car tax on EVs, either) and, if you drive your car in London, you won’t need to pay Ultra Low Emissions Zone (ULEZ) or the Congestion charge.
Forty-nine per cent of people don’t know the UK has more charging stations than petrol stations, which may explain why 35% of EV drivers say they worry about their vehicle running out of power, not being able to charge it, and getting stranded. A recent study from Lex AutoLease found many drivers are afraid to switch to EVs because of ‘range anxiety’.
Yet, further investment is on the way if we can believe our politicians. In the lead up to the election, the Conservatives pledged an extra £500m to boost the UK EV infrastructure, to make sure there’s a ChargePoint within 30 miles of each home in England and Wales. And, as part of their ‘Electric Car Revolution’, Labour promised a £3.6billion rollout of EV charging networks across the UK, with interest-free loans to help drivers buy EVs.
Are EVs expensive to own? What are your concerns about owning a plug-in car? Do you own an EV? What’s your experience of their running costs?
And they paid someone to do this study? Brilliant, lets face it fuel isn’t a cheap commodity these days is it. whilst power for your EV at the moment is, wonder what the difference will be when you compare last known price of fuel to electric when we all own EV’s and the market has swung away from liquid fuel to electricity. How cheap will they be to run then I wonder, at a guess no different as the government has to balance its books some how, tax on fuel gone, VED added to fuel (the “new” idea) gone, that’s a big hole to fill.
Remember Mrs May before she left government signed a contract to buy from the French company building the new reactor to supply us with electricity at more than double the price we are now paying. So I think that’s your answer.
John,. I think the actual guaranteed price per unit ws 6 times the market price at time of sale… Whoever thought that was a good idea was a complete idiot… Oh wait, it was a politician, so there are complete idiots.
good range/speed electric cars are much more expensive than cheap manual petrol cars. If you take loan costs into account petrol will be cheaper unless electric cars can last 50years or 1,000,000 miles, then won’t depreciate so much. Electric cars don’t have gear selection, so speed control not easy. Batteries make them heavier so handling not as good. Self-Driving cars may solve some of these problems, but they will only work if all cars are self-driven. Human vs Machine control don’t mix well, just like metal and plastic. (plastic parts break because they should have been made in metal) Sharing cars means sharing Germs.
Bull it’s a scam for us all to switch ,like thay did with derv ,thay think we are all thick. Don’t wont a lec car put it where the sun don’t shine.
To make electric aircraft work you have to toss the flat batteries overboard to make them light enough for landing and to get the range. Electric cars could be made to have a manual gearbox. Aircraft can be self-flying but not electric, cars can be electric but not self-driving. Aircraft are not good at self-flying near the ground, especially in bad weather.
“Autoland” has been available at Heathrow and Gatwick since 1990.
It’s only allowed if permission granted from a well calibrated airport, used in FOG(no wind), and periodic aircraft certification( low crosswinds ) and gives a harder landing. (they don’t use AI yet)
As far as I understand 737Max crash caused by computer knowing more than pilot.(MCAS not disabled when auto-pilot off)
Maybe but let’s see it control the equivalent of the number, and closeness, of motorway traffic!
Aircraft can be made electric if we use anti-gravity instead of Bird Technology.
I still have plenty of reservations about electric cars: range anxiety, finding charging points, finding charging points that aren’t occupied by others for an hour or more, charge deterioration rate of batteries, longevity of the batteries, price of replacement batteries, and residual values, especially as the batteries age.
I hear and see a lot of lip flapping and hand wringing over electric car battery life, but a quick web search would reveal – to anyone interested in seeing actual data – that Tesla batteries for example lose 10% over capacity during the first 2 years (real world data) and then stabilise, and are designed to last for 300,000 – 500,000 miles. Tesla has superior fast charging and electric motor tech, but lithium-ion batteries are currently all quite similar so we should expect similar lifetimes for all modern electric cars from respected manufacturers.
Maintenance costs of fewer moving parts is cheaper than internal combustion and manual gear shift tech, but you will be faced with a ~£5000 battery replacement charge after 1,500 cycles, which is prob much the same as 20 years of ICE maintenance and part replacement after 200,000+ miles.
However, I would agree with comments about reliability of politicians promises – we have numerous examples in the UK of infrastructure projects that are poorly designed, poorly managed and delivered over-budget and late, so what we get for the promised £500 million Conservative govt investment in charging stations should not be relied upon.
– question: who would deliver it more efficiently, govt agency or private company?
Here is a real world example, we have a Qashqai 1.2lt and a Nissan Leaf, now my official miles/kWh is 4.4miles, this is an average from my driving on an annual basis, which is logged by Nissan every time I drive the car, my leaf cost me £0.025p/mile but let’s call it £0.03p/mile
I recently filled up the Qashqai for my wife it’s her car, cost me £73.5to fill.
Now 73.50/£0.03=2,450miles now that’s what I call good economy.
Yes electric cars are dearer than dinosaur cars, the pay back is immense, very little maintenance and no pollution to worry about.
When the Qashqai come off it lease it’s gone as far as I’m concerned. And good riddance to it.
“very little maintenance ” you missed the YET out. there is very little maintenance to do on new, what you call dinosaur cars
And are they really pollution free, or just polluting in other areas instead (which we don’y want to mention. and as for the Qashqai big old lump that is not that good on fuel in the grand scale of dinosaurs. There are better ones usually not SUV’s that most people don’t actually need.
Go and look up the Child miners of the D.R.C. see how 8 year olds are working down pits to dig up the minerals for you precious EV… You can stick your nose in the air with your mileage calculations… but the costs surrounding your car are not all monetary, and in this case border on child abuse. You dont support child abuse do you?
Idiotic remark trickcyclist
Trickcyclist. The highly questionable human rights record in d.r.c should not put an end to making modern batteries. Cobalt is mined in other places too such as Cobalt, Canada. Also, less Cobalt is used in a modern batteries than has been in older ones. Would you boycott everything containing Cobalt?
Your maths is a bit dodgy. If electricity costs let say 20p per kWh + a standing daily charge + vat and you are getting 4.4 miles / kWh., your cost per mile is roughly 4.8p. Therefore your £73.50 will take you very roughly 1500 miles which is about twice the distance my 150hp diesel 4×4 will go on that amount of money and it won’t be costing me about a £1000 pa in battery replacement costs. That £1000 will give me about 10,000 miles of fuel. I only do about 5,000 miles per year. On my reckoning that breaks about even with your electricity charges and I don’t have to stop every 100 miles to recharge.
EV’s have a place in society but Electricity is not the only means of propelling vehicles. Also all that dead weight – battery charged – or not.
I see VW Group are really trying to make up for their diesel sins, but .as I read it Mercedes were also hauled up by the German authorities as well For the same reason. German OEM’s Buying from Chinese battery suppliers and I wonder where they (Chinese) get the cobalt from…leaving the ultimate battery purchasers (OEM’s) a few steps away from being directly affected from any ethical (child labour/environmental) issues possibly arising?
Battery fires look hellish to control from what I have seen, so even with fears of It’s combustibility…Hydrogen cells look a viable alternative and more relevantly the means of hydrogen production and its storage are rapidly evolving and improving.
However room for both I feel , but our law makers are getting ‘1 solution only’ obsessed again (this time with EV’s) …as with diesel many years ago.
Wasn’t just VW caught on the Diesel scam a lot of manufactures where, down side for VW where they where the 1st, and to be fair most VW drivers enjoyed the power, as most of these VW drivers now moan about the lack of power they now have after the update to make the car run to the “new” emissions rules.
As for the Germans buying cobalt from the Chinese, sorry to burst your bubble but its not just the Germans.
Shows how little the men with words think when they come out with this drivel…..”Mr Watson said the choice to move to an alternative fuelled vehicle ‘will be a personal one, depending on where you live and how much local investment there has been to infrastructure as the roll-out has not been even,’ though he said progress is happening fast.”
No thought or mention that it would also depend to a large extent on how much money a person has available to splash out on an EV ! Pensioners, disabled people and those on low incomes have very litlle to spare for the ‘upgrade’ that this requires, so how about assistance or a BIG discount for them ?
And whats this ‘hogwash’…
“the UK has more charging stations than petrol stations” ! Yeah right…in maybe 10% of the UK, such as within major cities perhaps. Bland statements such as that require more details as to where so many of these are located. Personally l don’t believe a word of it.
this is probably true, but a petrol station can serve 12 x 12 = 144 times as many people per hour than a charging point (if you have a 12 pump station with an average time of 5 minutes per person).
So electric charging likely has 1/100th the capacity of petrol/diesel currently
Who looks after these charging stations, making sure they are not vandalised or in working order, hopefully not the government, as we have all seen what they have done to the roads and railways, sea defences, build it, leave as it will look after itself, wait then till it all falls apart then declare we haven’ got enough money to repair it all al the moment they are all shiny and new, how long will that last?
Worse of all they privatise it, then these private companies will put their own charges on that station.
Interesting future we are running into.
A diesel Juke will happily get 50mpg at approx 11p per mile. If you charge your EV at a Shell station, currently the rate is 25p/kWh, so adding 60 miles to a Leaf will cost about a fiver…. so a slight improvement, but nothing like double.
As for Buses, if you splash out on a weekly ticket (Beds and Bucks all zones) £26.00 travel all day seven days a week if you care to.
Just a lot of bollox designed to mislead, imo.
I think you have missed the point 98% of BEV owners charge at home and per kWh will be extremely low or free, rapid charging away from home is for for trips.
I didn’t miss any point, I think you did. What they have done is compare the best option, home charging, against extremely unrealistic options. Besides which, 98% charge at home, why do so many complain about lack of infrastructure?
Like all people, they like to complain, you are doing it now and you have no experience of a BEV, yes infrastructure is growing and will get better as time goes by, I’ve been driving my 30kWh leaf for 2 years and I do a 540 mile round trip it’s only then that I use the rapids, I had COST anxiety when I drove my ICE vehicle, I certainly don’t have RANGE anxiety, and I’ve never run out of electrons, not like the 70,000 ice drivers per annum run out of petrol, charge on the motorways is akin to the same as putting petrol in your tank on motorways you have to pay for it.
£5.00/ 0.25=20kWh x 4 mile per kWh = 80 miles most ICE vehicles are doing 35/45mpg and £5.00 doesn’t get you 1 gallon.
So yes BEVs more than pay for themselves, just had my 2 yr service, 23,000 miles and brakes are only 20% worn tyres good for another 20,000 miles, battery health excellent.
And the major factor very little noise pollution and because no tail pipe no NOX and CO2.. to pollute the atmosphere.
Bull… unleaded petrol is around £4.50 a gallon… so more falsified figures….
Where are you buying unleaded at ~£1.00 a litre?!? If you’re going to accuse someone of Bull you should check your own figures are correct.
Trickcyclist, what a load of bollocks, the price here in kent is always high, and the average this year is 1.30p x 4.54 = 5.98. so who’s falsifying figures now
i can do a 540 mil;e trip without ever having to USE a fuel station, and i do so regularly enough for it to be an issue to have to keep stopping to recharge the car. even if i didnt set off with a full fuel tank, i can fill it from pretty close to bone dry in 10-15 mins. how long does it take for a battery car to do that? even on a rapid charger like Teslas supercharger, its quoted as being close to 2 HOURS! what am i expected to do for 2 hours when all i stopped for was to use a toilet and grab a drink, plus possibly refuel in a conventional car? it then means i either cant get to appointments on time OR i cant get home legally in a 12 hour working day, which means the next day, im playing catch-up. something thats NOT an issue in my current car!
For goodness sake, dispense with mpp and use m/£ !
Once all the smart meters are up and running we can charge VED on EVs(5% vat just won’t cut it). Charging at home is cheap but charging away is expensive. Once my fossil fuel car tank gets down to an EVs range, I’m sweating on filling it up. Nobody mentions battery life anymore, it seems they last forever now. When the leaf first appeared, it was the fastest depreciating car in the UK because you would have to buy a new battery every 3 to 5 years! Don’t you have to do that now?
The Smart meter only measures the electricity going into your house. It can’t know if you are using the electricity to charge a car, or heat up storage heaters.
Th There is a heavy tax on petrol and diesel, but (at present!!) no tax on electricity. Small wonder that £5 takes you further in an electric car.
” no tax on electricity” Yet!, we are not all converted yet, once we are well where does this heavy tax replacement on fuel come from I wonder same with VED. All about book balancing and you can’t take out two massive taxes like these two which make millions for the government and not replace with something.
I rather doubt is all going to be roses, which seems to be the general consensus at present. The reason we are paying through the nose on VED and fuel on ICE vehicles is they wasn’t them off the road ASAP, MOT’s getting harder to a pass, days are numbered for ICE.
Admittedly it’s not as high as on petrol/diesel but roughly 25% of your electricity bill is VAT and “environmental and social obligation costs” – source Ofgem.gov.uk
Im sick to death of this stupid stat that says the UK has more charging stations then petrol stations…. Do you think people dont know that each and every petrol station has at least 6 / 8 / 10 pumps for you to fill up… so the ratio is not in favour of charging points but more like 8 to 1 in favour of petrol…
Add top that to fill up with petrol takes less than five minutes, how long to charge your EV, if you can get onto the one available chnagring point?
The whole article falls apart… people stick with either you petrol / diesel engines or maybe a hybrid… the EV are still expensive rubbish.
They are misleading stats but every home that has a driveway can install their own home charger.
Maybe it should even be a planning requirement on new builds.
and does every single dwelling in the UK HAVE a driveway?
Maybe they should compare £5 of fuel to £1 of electricity because fuel is so heavily taxed.
Had solar panels fitted 8 years ago and can now run our EV’s for nothing. Average domestic journey is reported to be about 25 miles and, for us, this seems to be right. So just get used to popping the plug in when you get home. One of our cars is a hybrid and I only use that on petrol for longer journeys. Haven’t bought any juice for over two months. We do about 8k miles a year combined with our two vehicles.
Why does the UK Government burying its head in the sand over hydrogen? Switzerland is embracing it after years of research. Supermarkets across Switzerland are installing hydrogen pumps as it is cleaner and much more environmentally sound than every electric. Could this be because Switzerland is not a slave to the EU?
Rather than assume it’s some EU ploy why not do some research and then contact your MP and the Secretary of State about it. Have you heard of the “Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Joint Undertaking”, no, neither had I until you prompted me to find out more about it. Thank you.
One of the big draws of electric and a bit of a “quick win” is you can literally plug your car into a 13A socket and it will charge.
I traded up my 3 yr old BMWi3 last year to gain the better electric mileage, ordered the same spec. Was not told that the price increase was going to take my annual road tax bill from zero to £455.00 p.a. My husband’s (pollutant) diesel cost £155.00 p.a. I’m trying to remind myself I’m doing it for the planet. (Apart from the automatic run of the tiny petrol engine it has not been needed to be used.)
That must feel like a kick in the teeth but it’s nothing about buying an electric car and all about buying a new car costing over £40k.
Fuel duty has been a cash cow 🐄 for Governments for decades. What current duty on electric! Let’s at least present a have a level playing field !
How much pollution does the generation of the electricity create?
Plus how much pollution is caused by the mining, refining and other processes of the battery raw materials, manufacture and recycling when spent?
Comparisons of cost mean nothing other than for the very short term, unless you remove all taxes from the comparison. The vast majority of the “cost” of fossil fuels is tax.
The article above tries to compare how far £5 will take you on different forms of transport but it fails to take into account that there is no such thing as a standard distance the £5 will take you by train. I regularly do an 80 mile journey and depending on when I book, it can cost me as little as £7.25 for a return ticket.
But hey don’t let a few facts confuse the issue.
Even better if you are over 60 in Scotland your Free bus pass will take you to any place you want to go to that has a bus service.
Also the standard fares are cheaper than the ones you suggest.
You can travel further on a tank full of, for instance, diesel than you can on a battery fully charged!
When a fully charged Electric Vehicle can REALISTICALLY travel over 400 miles, then I may be interested!
That would, just, be enough for the journey to visit family.
I wonder if we are comparing the true cost of the fuel. The cost of diesel or petrol is massively taxed compared to electric. Given that the Gov will change the tax as soon as they see revenue dropping off then its hard to say the electric is better. I suppose the £5 comes out of your pocket regardless but I argue that a real comparison of the two would be energy consumed for the same mileage