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The True Cost of Running an Electric Vehicle

The True Cost of Running an Electric Vehicle

Are you considering making the switch to an electric vehicle? Discover the real costs involved and find out if it's worth it. This article will explore the various costs associated with owning and operating an electric vehicle, including purchase price, charging, maintenance, and more. Our aim is to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of the costs involved in owning an EV, helping you make an informed decision.

Table of Contents
  • Purchase Price

  • Charging Costs

  • Maintenance and Repairs

  • Insurance and Road Tax

  • Resale Value

  • Government Incentives

  • Conclusion

Purchase Price

New EVs

The average cost of new electric vehicles in the UK has been steadily decreasing as technology advances and economies of scale take effect. While EVs still tend to be more expensive upfront than their petrol or diesel counterparts, the gap is narrowing. Popular EV models, such as the Nissan Leaf, Renault Zoe, and Tesla Model 3, can be found in a wide price range depending on features and battery size.

Used EVs

The used EV market is growing as more people switch to electric cars, and early adopters upgrade their vehicles. This means that there are more affordable options for those looking to purchase a used EV. However, it's essential to consider factors like battery health, warranty, and charging infrastructure when buying a used electric vehicle.

Charging Costs

Home Charging

One of the most convenient aspects of EV ownership is the ability to charge at home. Installing a home charging unit typically costs between £500 and £800 after government grants. The cost of electricity for charging your EV will vary depending on your tariff, but it's generally cheaper than refuelling a petrol or diesel vehicle.

See our range of charge points

Public Charging

Public charging networks across the UK offer various fees and costs. Some networks charge a flat rate per kWh, while others require a subscription or a combination of both. Apps like Zap-Map can help you locate charging stations and compare costs, making it easier to minimise expenses while on the go.

See more information on Home vs Public charging

Maintenance and Repairs

Routine Maintenance

Electric vehicles generally require less routine maintenance than traditional combustion engine vehicles. With fewer moving parts, there's less that can go wrong. You'll save on costs like oil changes, transmission fluid, and exhaust system repairs. However, it's still important to budget for regular maintenance items such as tire rotations, brake pads, and coolant checks.

Repair Costs

While electric vehicles are known for their reliability, there's always the potential for repairs. The costliest component in an EV is the battery, which may require replacement after several years. Battery replacement costs can range from £3,000 to £10,000, depending on the vehicle model. However, most manufacturers offer battery warranties of 8 years or more, providing peace of mind for potential buyers.

Battery cost resource

Insurance and Road Tax


Insurance costs for electric vehicles can be higher than those for petrol or diesel cars due to their higher purchase price and the expense of repairing specialised components. However, as EVs become more common, insurance rates are expected to become more competitive.

Road Tax

One significant advantage of EV ownership in the UK right now is the exemption from Vehicle Excise Duty (VED), commonly known as road tax. This can save you hundreds of pounds per year compared to a traditional car.

Resale Value

As electric vehicles become more popular, their resale value has been improving. Factors such as battery health, remaining warranty, and overall condition will influence the resale value of your EV. As the technology continues to advance and the charging infrastructure expands, it is expected that the demand for used electric vehicles will increase, further improving resale values.

Government Incentives

The UK government offers incentives to encourage the adoption of electric vehicles. The Plug-in Grant provides a discount of up to £2,500 on the purchase price of new electric cars that meet specific criteria. Additionally, the EV chargepoint grant, formally known as the Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS) offers grants of up to £350 towards the cost of installing a home charging point. These incentives can help offset the initial costs of EV ownership.


Owning an electric vehicle in the UK comes with various costs, including purchase price, charging, maintenance, and insurance. However, with lower running costs, road tax exemption, and government incentives, EVs can be a cost-effective and environmentally friendly choice for many drivers. 

Our aim was to provide you with a comprehensive understanding of the costs involved in owning an EV in the UK, helping you make an informed decision. 

Written by Kyle L
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