- What is an ultra-low emission vehicle?
An ultra-low emission vehicle is one that emits less than 50g/km CO2 but to be certified as a “zero emission” vehicle it must have zero tailpipe emissions. All of the EVs and plug-in hybrids on our website, regardless of type, are classified as ultra-low emission and we also have a wide range of some of the UK’s most popular fully electric vehicles.
- What are the different types of electric vehicles that are available?
There are three main types of electric vehicles Fully electric vehicles and hydrogen fuel cell cars produce zero tailpipe emissions. Fully electric vehicles are powered solely by electricity stored in their electric batteries, and hydrogen fuell cell cars are powered by a combination of stored hydrogen gas and oxygen from the air. Plug-in hybrid cars contain both a combustion engine and an electric battery, and produce zero tailpipe emissions when driven in electric mode. Read our guide to types of electric vehicles to find out about the key differences between these types.
- What is the difference between a plug-in hybrid and a fully electric vehicle?
Fully electric cars produce zero tailpipe emissions and are powered solely by electricity, whereas a plug-in hybrid car contains both a combustion engine and an electric battery.
You can find out more here.
- What kind of car is a hydrogen fuel cell car?
Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are zero emission vehicles that combine hydrogen gas from their fuel tank and oxygen from the air to generate energy. The only by-product of the reaction is water, which is so pure that you would be able to drink it. Hydrogen has a high energy-density, meaning you can travel up to 414 miles in a hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle.
- How do I know if an electric vehicle is zero emissions?
A fully electric vehicle is driven purely by electricity and has zero tailpipe emissions. You can see all the best fully zero emissions cars available in the UK here.
- What Electric vehicles are included in the Go Ultra Low campaign?
The Go Ultra Low campaign currently covers fully electric cars and vans as well as Plug in hybrid cars and vans.
You’ll find information about these vehicles on our website. The campaign only includes vehicles that are capable of zero tailpipe emissions and therefore the website does not have information about Hybrids.
- What energy tariffs can be used with smart charging?
There are different three different kinds of tariffs: a single rate tariff, an Economy 7, or a time of use tariff.
Allows you to smart charging by giving you a period of “off-peak” hours where electricity is cheaper. Economy 7 provides seven hours of continuous off-peak power. The exact times will depend on where you live and which energy supplier you’re with, but will most likely be between 10.30pm and 8.30am.
Time of use tariffs:
Allows you to smart charging by giving you a cheaper period of “off-peak” hours where electricity is cheaper. You’ll have the cheap rates overnight, though different tariffs will have different peak and off-peak times and prices, so it’s worth shopping around to find the best deal for you.
A single rate tariff plan:
There are no peak or off-peak periods. This means that you pay the same rate whatever time of day you use energy, so you will have a good idea of what you’re going to spend each month. The rate is usually lower than the peak rates of a time of use tariff, however, it is usually more expansive than the off-peak rates.
To find out more about EV specific tariffs visit our EV tariffs page.
- What is smart charging?
Smart charging is when you charge an EV during times when demand is lower and electricity is cheaper or when there is more, clean renewable energy generation.
There are a number of ways you can smart charge.
- If you have off-street parking, you can install a smart chargepoint outside your home and when your EV is plugged in, the chargepoint will adjust charging accordingly.
- You can program your EV to only charge overnight, when there is less demand for electricity.
- Install a smart meter to help manage electricity use throughout the household.
Some public chargepoints could have the ability to charge smartly but a car will need to be parked for a longer period, usually overnights.
- How far can electric vehicles really go?
Many of the latest EV’s can travel over 200 miles on a single charge. However, this varies between the different models of EVs available. The range starts at around 100 miles,and goes up to over 300 miles. Different types of EV have different maximum ranges. Factors such as type of terrain, climate and speed can all impact the distance and EV can travel on a single charge.. You can get accurate EV range projection by using our journey range calculator.
- What factors impact range in electric vehicles?
Factors that impact the range of an EV can include terrain, temperature, speed, load and the type of EV you’re driving. You can find out more about the different types of EVs available here.
- Are there ways to maximise range when driving an electric vehicle?
Yes – many EV have an eco mode which is designed to conserve as much battery power as possible. Driving more slowly and using less climate control within the vehicle can also help improve battery life. With the UK’s extensive network of charging infrastructure you never have to worry about range as there will always be a charging point nearby.
- Where are electric vehicle charging stations located?
There are over 37,500 public chargepoint connectors at over 13,500 locations available in the UK. To find one near you, or plan your next long distance trip, see Zap map’s interactive charging map. You’ll be able to filter these results by charging type, availability, speed and more so you can always find the right station for your requirements.
- How do I plan longer trips in an electric vehicle?
Zap Map’s interactive charging map has locations for every major EV charging station in the UK so you can plan even very long trips easily. To plan a longer journey in your EV you can map out your proposed route and easily identify the best charging stations for your chosen route. There are now rapid charging points available at 97% of motorway service stations.
- How long does it take to charge an electric vehicle?
Charging times vary depending on the capacity of the vehicle’s battery as well as the type of charger used. Rapid charging units can charge most EVs to 80% capacity in under an hour while home charging units can take around 5-10 hours to fully recharge your EV’s battery. Use our home charging tool for accurate times for all major EVs on the road today.
- How much does it cost to charge an electric vehicle?
Charging an EV can be much cheaper than filling up with petrol. You could charge a fully electric vehicle like the Nissan LEAF for around £2.35. This would give you a range of approximately 200 miles or 1.2p per mile. Driving the same distance in an equivalent petrol or diesel car would cost more than £20. You can use our home charging estimator to get accurate cost projections for charging your EV.
- Will I have to charge my electric vehicle every day?
No, most of the latest EV’s can travel over 200 miles on a single charge which means you can handle the average commute in the UK (about 15 miles) comfortably. Most EV owners top up their car’s battery overnight at home whenever needed using a home charging unit.
- What are some of the tax incentives for electric vehicle owners?
One of the most frustrating running costs associated with petrol and diesel cars is the amount of road tax you pay annually. This amount is based on the band that your vehicle falls into and can cost hundreds of pounds every year. Driving an EV is different. You could pay little or no road tax as fully electric vehicles are exempt from these charges. Find out exactly how much you could save each year by using our car tax calculator. In addition to tax savings, EV owners are also exempt from most congestion charge and low emission zone taxes in big cities, adding even further savings.
- Are there Government grants for electric vehicle owners?
Yes – there are two main government grants available for EV owners. The plug-in car grant or plug-in van grant subsidies the cost of a new vehicle by up to £3,000 for a new car and £8,000 for a new van. This helps cover some of the cost of buying a new EV. There is also the Electric Vehicle Homecharge scheme, which helps to meet some of the installation cost of a home charging unit. You can find out more about both grants here.
- Am I eligible for the electric vehicle charging scheme?
The majority of ultra-low emission electric cars and vans in the UK are eligible to receive the OLEV grant helping to meet the costs of installation for a home charging unit. You are eligible for the homecharging scheme if:
- Your EV or low-emission plug-in hybrid was purchased after 1 October 2016
- You have dedicated off-street parking available
- The date of installation is no more than 4 months before you take delivery or become the registered driver of the relevant EV
- The EV you purchase is on the approved list of electric vehicles
- The home charging unit and installer you choose is on the approved list of chargers
To make commuting in your Go Ultra Low car even easier, the Workplace Charging Scheme also enables any business, charity or public authority to claim a grant of up to £350 per charging socket towards the cost of installing EV charge points. For full details on the EV charging scheme, including all approved vehicles and installers visit the OLEV website here.
- How much can electric vehicle owners save in running costs?
EVs are cheaper to maintain and run than traditional petrol and diesel cars. Because there are less moving parts there is reduced wear and tear on the car . By switching to an EV you could save an estimated 20-30% on service and maintenance costs compared to a petrol or diesel equivalent. There are also major savings in the form of grants and generous tax incentives. On top of this charging your EV can be significantly cheaper than filling up with petrol or diesel.
- How much can I save by switching to an electric vehicle?
The amount that you could save by switching to an EV depends on the type of vehicle you choose, how often you drive and the overall cost of fuel, service and maintenance. Driving an EV is significantly cheaper than a conventional petrol or diesel car, you can see how much you could save on every journey by using our journey cost calculator or find out more much you could save in tax by using our intelligent tax calculator.
- How much do electric vehicles cost to maintain?
EVs are far cheaper to maintain and run than traditional cars. Because there are less moving parts there is reduced wear and tear on the car and engine. By switching to an EV you could save an estimated 20-30% on service and maintenance costs compared to a petrol or diesel equivalent.
- How much tax do I pay on an electric vehicle?
Fully electric vehicles exempt from road tax while ultra-low emission vehicles pay less than regular vehicles. EV owners are also exempt from congestion charges and low emission zone taxes in big cities. So, owning an EV could save you hundreds of pounds per year!
Find out more by using our car tax calculator.
- Can I enter a salary sacrifice scheme to buy an electric vehicle?
Yes – if your company has a salary sacrifice scheme which helps towards the cost of buying a car, the majority of electric vehicles qualify. In addition fully electric vehicles could be covered by the scheme.
- Is charging an electric vehicle cheaper than filling up with petrol?
Yes, charging an EV can be much cheaper than filling up with petrol or diesel. For example, you could charge a fully electric vehicle like the Nissan LEAF for around £2.00. This would give you a range of approximately 200 miles or 1p per mile. Driving the same distance in an equivalent petrol or diesel car would cost more than £20.
You can see how much it costs to charge an array of the UK’s best EV’s by using our smart journey cost calculator.
- How can I avoid the new car tax?
You pay zero tax on fully electric vehicles. Fully electric cars and vans have no harmful emissions therefore they are fully exempt from the new car tax. Plug-in hybrids pay less than petrol and diesel cars too. The Government’s bands for car tax is now:
- £140 a year for petrol or diesel vehicles
- £130 a year for alternative fuel vehicles (plug-in hybrids, bioethanol and LPG)
- £0 a year for vehicles with zero CO2 emissions
You can beat the new car tax and find your dream EV using our specially designed car selector tool.
- What are some of the tax incentives for electric vehicle owners?
One of the most frustrating running costs associated with petrol and diesel cars is the amount of road tax you pay annually. This amount is based on the band that your vehicle falls into and can cost hundreds of pounds every year. Driving an electric car is different. You could pay little or no road tax as zero emission vehicles are exempt from these charges. Find out exactly how much you could save each year by using our car tax calculator. In addition to tax savings, EV owners are also exempt from most congestion charge and low emission zone taxes in big cities, adding even further savings.
- How do electric vehicles benefit the environment?
EVs benefit the environment by producing drastically lower levels of harmful greenhouse emissions. Some EVs have zero tailpipe emissions while others have ultra-low emissions of below 50g/kg CO2. By emitting less carbon into the atmosphere, EV drivers are helping improve local air quality.
- Which type of vehicles benefit the environment the most?
The best cars for the environment are those that boast zero tailpipe emissions and are fully electric vehicles. To find out more about the types of EV available, see our handy guide.
- What is the cleanest type of electric vehicle?
Fully electric and hyrdogren fuel cell cars have zero tailpipe emissions making them greener, cleaner and better for the environment than petrol or diesel cars.
- Do electric vehicles need service and maintenance?
With no need for oil or filters, no complicated gearbox and no clutch, there is far less to regularly maintain in an electric vehicle than in a combustion engine driven car. This means they require far less servicing and maintenance.
- Can I save money on service charges for my electric vehicles?
Yes, the majority of serving and maintenance charges for EVs are on diagnostics and electric dashboard systems rather than on replacement parts and repairs. This drastically drops the cost of servicing and because most manufacturers carry out actual servicing, you’re likely to save a considerable amount.
- Are electric vehicles safe to drive?
Yes, EV’s are incredibly safe to drive and come with advanced safety features like cruise control, assisted driving, lane intervention, air bags, automatic emergency braking and more. Find out more about specific features using our car selector tool.
- Are electric vehicles safer in accidents?
Fully electric vehicles can be safer in collisions as without a combustion engine and highly flammable fuel tanks they are less likely to explode or catch fire. The advanced safety features in many electric vehicle batteries makes them far safer than traditional petrol and diesel powered engines.
- Can my business switch to electric vehicles?
Switching to EVs for your business or fleet could save your company significant sums in vehicle maintenance and related overheads. You can find out more about business grants and incentives here or investigate some of the available tax benefits here.
- How much could my business save by switching to electric vehicles?
You could save your business thousands of pounds by switching to electric vehicles. Cost savings on fuel account for a large percentage of this, however additional savings on tax, maintenance and servicing fees and running costs all make switching even better for your company’s bottom line. Use our journey cost calculator to compare your current business vehicle(s) against an equivalent EV to see how much you could save.
- What type of electric vehicles are available for business?
There is an EV to suit every type of business from large courier companies to local bakeries, trades businesses and more. You can see a wide selection of the best EVs for UK businesses by using our Car Selector Tool for businesses and fleets.
- How do electric vans and petrol vans compare?
In addition to the tax and congestion charge savings, one of the biggest differences between electric and petrol vans is the fuel savings. You can compare fuel efficiency and performance of electric vans versus their petrol and diesel equivalents here. You will also be able to compare cost per journey for an electric van vs a petrol one.
- How can the Workplace charging scheme help me?
The Workplace charging scheme helps you install chargepoints at work. This means you can top up your EV whilst you work.
Businesses, charities and the wider public sector can get grants of up to £350 per socket for installing up to 40 charging sockets for their employees and fleets.
- Are there energy tariffs for electric vehicle drivers?
There are a number of energy tariffs available specifically for electric vehicle drivers and these could help you save money, for example by charging your electric vehicle at certain times and avoiding others. For more information visit our dedicated electric vehicle tariffs page.
For more information visit our dedicated EV tariffs page.
- What are “Smart Tariffs”?
Smart tariffs can deliver cost savings for electric vehicle owners by encouraging them to charge the electric vehicle when the electricity price is cheapest, for example overnight or in the early hours of the morning. Find out more here.
- Can I save money when charging my electric vehicle?
Yes, you can save a significant amount when charging an EV versus filling up your car with petrol or diesel. Compare how much you could save on every journey and full charge with our charging tool.
- What does it cost to charge my electric vehicle?
Work out more much it will cost and how long it will take to charge your EV using our home charging calculator. You can save a significant amount by switching to an EV tariff and charging at home overnight.
- How can I track my electricity usage when I charge my electric vehicle?
Smart energy tariffs designed for electric vehicles work with smart meters to help you monitor electricity usage throughout your household. This will give accurate readings on exactly how much electricity you use throughout your household, including an idea of how much your electric vehicle uses, and can help predict costs. Find out more about the available tariffs here.
Find out more about the available tariffs here.
- What insurance cover should I consider for my electric vehicle?
With green machines becoming ever more popular, there are more options for car insurance cover designed for pure electric vehicles. A good EV insurance policy might include recovery if you run out of charge, battery cover and home charger and cable cover. You can read more about insurance for electric vehicles here.
- How do I know if a dealership can help me purchase an EV?
Look out for The Electric Vehicle Approved (EVA) kitemark.
This scheme aims to provide independent accreditation to help identify dealerships that have a high level of EV knowledge and customer care. Using EVA approved dealerships will help you make an informed choice when looking to purchase your EV. The EVA scheme is endorsed by the Governments Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) and the Energy Saving Trust (EST)
To find your nearest EVA dealerships use our local incentives map
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