Promoted | Busting the big electric car myths

There’s a lot of fake news around electric cars. That’s why we’ve found the biggest electric car myths and misconceptions, and brought the facts to bear...

There’s a lot of fake news around electric cars. We’ve found the biggest electric car myths and misconceptions, and brought the facts to bear

It’s clear that electric cars – such as the Nissan LEAF – are the future. But, for drivers who aren’t familiar with how easy electric cars are to use, the idea of a future where we plug-in-and-play seems anything but simple. That’s why we’ve taken the biggest electric car myths and misconceptions and busted them. Whether it’s range, charging or cost, here are all your electric car questions answered.

For more information on the all-electric Nissan LEAF, head to nissan.co.uk/leaf.

Electric cars can’t travel very far

A range of 300 to 800 miles on a tank of fuel is a luxury we’re used to. But electric cars are by no means restrictive. The all-electric Nissan LEAF offers up to 168 miles of range, or up to 239 miles for Nissan LEAF e+ models (WLTP)1. In a LEAF e+ that’s easily enough for a three-hour journey from Bristol to Sheffield – the sort of journey you wouldn’t do without a lunch or coffee break, which gives you easily enough time for a top-up recharge if needed.

It’s also worth re-thinking range. Most everyday journeys are roughly 10-20 miles – especially in urban areas. So, even without topping up at home every night, a typical Nissan LEAF e+ driver doing 10,000 miles a year could easily do a week’s worth of driving on one charge.

Electric cars take a long time to charge 

We’re used to a quick splash-and-dash of fuel, but electric cars are faster to charge than you think. It’s also worth thinking about how to fit charging around times when your car isn’t moving – whether its wallbox charging slowly and cheaply at home overnight or while you’re at work during the day, or fitting top-up ‘grazing’ on public chargers around activities that take half-an-hour or more, such as shopping, lunch, meetings or hobbies.

The Nissan LEAF can recharge on a 50kW rapid charger from 20% to 80% in 60 minutes (or 90 minutes for the 239-mile-range LEAF e+)2. At home, it takes around 7hrs and 30 minutes to charge the LEAF on a 7kW wallbox.

We’re used to a quick splash-and-dash of fuel, but electric cars are faster to charge than you think.

It’s expensive to fit a home charger

Costs for home chargers vary, but the UK government’s electric vehicle charging scheme grant can cover up to 75% of the costs (up to a maximum of £350 inc. VAT)3. That means a 7kW home charger from Pod Point – which is three times faster than a domestic 3-pin plug – costs as little as £529 to fit. Compare that to the amount of petrol or diesel you buy in a year, and the cost benefits quickly add up.

It’s hard to find public charging points

The UK is preparing for an electric car future with over 32,000 public charging points at over 11,000 locations, and around 500 more charging points added every month. For perspective, there are only 8,385 petrol stations in the UK (down from 18,000 in 1992). The times are clearly changing.

Electric cars are more expensive

Although electric cars are more expensive than similar petrol or diesel cars, the gap is narrowing – and it’s important to think about whole-life running costs. For example, the Nissan LEAF starts at £26,845 (OTR MRRP inc. UK plug-in grant), while a similarly sized family hatchback costs between £23,000 and £28,000.

Once you consider EV benefits such as the UK government’s £3,000 plug-in car grant, 0% benefit-in-kind (BIK) company car rates4, zero road tax and zero congestion charge – as well as average fuel savings of £884 per year (compared to a similar family-sized petrol model)5 – the long-term financial incentives are clear.

Nissan LEAF e+ models have an impressive 217PS and 340Nm of instant electric torque, delivering 0-62mph in just 6.9sec

Electric cars aren’t exciting to drive

Nissan LEAF e+ models have an impressive 217PS and 340Nm of instant electric torque, delivering 0-62mph in just 6.9sec (around 3sec faster than most family hatchbacks). Impressive mid-range acceleration lets you power from turn to turn with verve, as well as giving you confidence to overtake another car if needed. But not all journeys are on flowing country roads. The Nissan LEAF also makes long journeys and city traffic easier and less stressful thanks to e-Pedal one-pedal driving and advanced Nissan ProPILOT driving aids6 that help with braking, steering and accelerating.

Electric cars aren't as reliable

Electric cars actually have fewer moving parts than petrol or diesel cars, so there’s less to service or go wrong. Typical annual service costs for the Nissan LEAF at participating dealers range from £159-£209, compared to £269-£369 for a diesel car at participating Nissan dealers. 

Electric car batteries degrade over time

While it’s true that batteries lose capacity as they are charged and depleted many times over, new generation lithium-ion batteries are proving much more resilient than expected – losing as little as 10% capacity over 100,000 miles (roughly 12 years of typical UK driving).

That’s why every new Nissan LEAF comes with a three-year/ 60,000-mile basic warranty, a five-year/60,000-mile warranty for any EV components and an eight-year/100,000-mile warranty for both 40kWh and 62kWh batteries7.

You can’t use the air-con or heating

While it’s true that excessive use of the air-conditioning or in-car heating takes range from the battery, it’s just a matter of re-thinking how you use it. The NissanConnect Services app – which can be used on compatible smartphones – lets you remotely pre-heat or pre-cool your Nissan LEAF while it’s recharging, so it’s at the right temperature when you get in it without losing any range before you start your trip8. You can also sync navigation, so you can plan every element of your trip before you leave the comfort of your sofa.

For more information on the all-electric Nissan LEAF, head to nissan.co.uk/leaf.

1. Laminated lithium-ion 40kWh battery with up to 168 miles range and e+ 62kWh battery with up to 239 miles range. WLTP figures shown are for comparability purposes. Actual real-world driving results may vary depending on factors such as the starting charge of the battery, accessories fitted after registration, weather conditions, driving styles and vehicle load.

2. Indicated rapid charging time may vary depending on factors including charging conditions, battery and ambient temperature at point of use and if the battery safeguarding technology is activated. Visit nissan.co.uk to find out more.

3. Eligibility criteria apply. Please refer to the following website for details: gov.uk/government/collections/government-grants-for-low-emission-vehicles

4. 0% BIK. Please seek independent tax advice.

5. Information correct at June 2020. Fuel cost: AA June 2020, £1.08 per litre of fuel. Assuming average C-SUV petrol car achieving 40mpg over 10,000 miles = 1,136.5 litres at £1.08 = £1,228 per year. Electricity cost of 1kWh = 14.37p as per UKpower.co.uk. 10,000 miles / 168 miles range = 60 recharges. 60 x 40kWh @ 14.37p per kWh = £345 per year. Savings = £884.

6. ProPILOT is an Advanced Driver Assist technology but cannot prevent collisions. ProPILOT is intended for “Eyes on/Hands On” for highways only (road separated by barriers). It is the driver’s responsibility to stay alert, drive safely and be in control of the vehicle at all times. For more information, please refer to the owner’s manual or visit www.nissan.co.uk/techterms

7. Year or mileage (whichever comes first). For full warranty terms and conditions, visit nissan.co.uk or speak to your local dealer.

8. To use NissanConnect services you need a smartphone with compatible iOS or Android operating system. Services subject to mobile network coverage. NissanConnect Services available for an additional charge on subscription after the third year. For further information, please visit www.nissan.co.uk or contact your local Nissan Dealer.

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