If you have owned and run a car for at least the past 3 or 4 years, you’ll have seen a noticeable difference in the amount of money it costs to keep a car on the road and ensure that it’s maintained.
And if you’ve owned a car for 3 or 4 decades, you’ll often be met by smirks and sniggers as younger generations don’t believe it when you explain how cheap petrol was when you first owned your car.
No matter which way you look at it, for the vast majority of people, the costs of running a car can now be phenomenal.
Fortunately, there are ways to solve this problem and bring your car related costs right down, with one of the best ways being to swap your petrol or diesel guzzling car for a more economical electric hybrid.
Although electric hybrid engines are still only in their infancy, the actual technology has been around for over a century, with electric cars being particularly popular before the turn of the twentieth century.
However, with the development of the petrol powered internal combustion engine, electric engines became the less favourable choice for around 100 years, until the electric technology was developed to such an extent that the reasons it was phased out in the first place – high costs and long refuelling times – became less of a problem.
The first modern day, mass-produced electric car is widely regarded as being the Insight, which entered Honda dealers in Japan in November 1999 and within 12 months it was available in Honda dealers all across North America.
From this point onwards, almost all manufacturers started looking at electric hybrid engines, with the majority either having produced or released plans for a hybrid model before 2010.
And it really is no surprise – electric cars are becoming more popular as they beat petrol and diesel cars in respect of costs in almost every category.
Take vehicle tax as an example. Now based on CO2 emissions, if you have a car that was registered after 1 March 2001 and produces CO2 emissions of 151-165 g/km (which makes the car fall into the middle band G), you’ll be paying 155 pounds for 1 year’s car tax.
Buy an electric car, however and as they produce such a small amount of CO2 emissions, they will fall into Band A, meaning you have no vehicle tax to pay for the year. Then there are fuel costs to take into consideration.
With a petrol engine, you’re currently looking at paying between 111 and 114 pence per litre for unleaded petrol, which means to fill up an average sized car, you’d need to spend around 50 pounds.
An electric engine simply requires for you to plug the battery in and recharge it, which would cost a minimal amount as it would be a negligible increase in your home electricity costs.
If you’re struggling to pay for your car’s ongoing bills or simply want to stop paying such a high amount for fuel and tax, you really should consider a car with an electric engine – and with more and more manufacturers producing electric cars, you’ll be spoilt for choice over the coming few years. BOLA TANGKAS