“I’m all for going green, but not if it pushes me into the red”

Chief sub-editor Andy Pringle thinks electric cars are still too expensive compared to combustion-engined equivalents

I know every car maker under the sun is falling over itself to develop electric cars at the moment, but I can’t see EVs gaining mass acceptance until the Government dips its hands into its pockets and makes them more affordable.

Why? Well, the answer is in black and white on our best car leasing deals page. We happily tell you that the Skoda Citigo e iV – a pure-electric car – is one of the best cars you could buy for less than £10 a day. And it is.

Trouble is, just below is another rightly recommended small car, the petrol-engined Vauxhall Corsa 1.2 SE SE Premium – and it will cost you just £4.61 a day. If you’re like me and work out your finances on a monthly basis, the maths says that the Corsa is almost £100 a month less. Plus, it’s a bigger and well specified car, with a very decent average economy of 53.6mpg.

To my mind, what that shows is that buying a small electric car makes no sense for the very people for whom it should make the most sense: people living in urban or suburban areas, with low annual mileages, who mostly use their car for pottering about.

Unless you have deep pockets, £100 each and every month is a significant sum of money. And, yes, I know that electric cars are cheaper to run and all that, but you’ve got to go a long way to make up that £100 deficit – especially when the alternative is pretty economical.

To cut a long story short, I’m all for going green, but not if it pushes me into the red. And that was why, when I looked at getting a new car, an electric car was out of the question on my family’s budget. In the end, we went for a lovely five-door hatch – with a petrol engine. Not even a plug-in or mild hybrid.

For now, EVs aren’t going to get much cheaper, so the only way to bridge that £100 gap every month is to give buyers some major incentive to make them financially attractive. I love driving electric cars, I appreciate that they put out less pollution, and I know they’re the future. But, most people in this country buy with their wallets, not their consciences.

So, come on, Boris, I know it’s not easy when you’re faced with a pandemic, but if you want EVs to be the present, you need to make the sums add up for people who might be considering buying one.

Click here for our list of the best car leasing deals available right now...

Recommended

Tesla Model S Plaid claims Nurbugring lap record for a production EV
Tesla Model S facelift - front
Tesla Model S

Tesla Model S Plaid claims Nurbugring lap record for a production EV

Tesla founder Elon Musk claims “unmodified” high-performance Model S saloon has set a 7min 31sec lap time around the ‘ring
10 Sep 2021
New BMW iX3 2021 review
BMW iX3 - front
BMW iX3

New BMW iX3 2021 review

The all-electric BMW iX3 has arrived in the UK to rival the Mercedes EQC, Audi e-tron and Jaguar I-Pace
8 Sep 2021
All-electric ORA CAT set for UK launch in 2022
Ora Cat - Munich front
Electric cars

All-electric ORA CAT set for UK launch in 2022

Great Wall’s ORA electric car brand is coming to the UK in 2022, and it’s bringing the CAT
6 Sep 2021
New Vauxhall Astra-e: electric hatchback set for 2023 launch
Vauxhall Astra PHEV - full front
Vauxhall Astra

New Vauxhall Astra-e: electric hatchback set for 2023 launch

The new all-electric Vauxhall Astra-e will join the hatchback's line-up in 2023, and could boast a range of around 250 miles
1 Sep 2021

Most Popular

'The death of cheap cars will be a travesty for personal mobility'
Opinion cheap cars
Opinion

'The death of cheap cars will be a travesty for personal mobility'

Our appetite for small, cheap cars is as strong as ever - although Mike Rutherford warns they may no longer be profitable
12 Sep 2021
Genesis G80 vs Mercedes E-Class vs Lexus ES
Genesis G80 vs Mercedes E-Class vs Lexus ES
Genesis G80

Genesis G80 vs Mercedes E-Class vs Lexus ES

The Genesis G80 looks to make an impact in the executive saloon class as we pitch it against the Mercedes E-Class and Lexus ES
18 Sep 2021
What is Skoda vRS? History and best cars driven
Skoda vRS range
Skoda

What is Skoda vRS? History and best cars driven

To mark 20 years of Skoda’s vRS badge, we rounded up some of the performance cars from the past two decades that have worn the subtle green badge
17 Sep 2021