Skip advert
Advertisement
Opinion

'Brands will need new tricks to make electric cars affordable'

John McIlroy thinks manufacturers will use the electric car rollout to change the buying process

Toyota opinion

Another week, another new entry into the electric-car market. And this time it’s a biggie: Toyota, the leading light of hybrid electrification over the past 20 years, has finally ditched the combustion engine altogether for the first of its bZ EV line-up.

We’ll leave you to read Sean Carson’s full verdict on a late prototype of the bZ4X – but one interesting aspect to take from the review is that Toyota is trying to use this car to shake up its retail model. Fact is, a four-wheel-drive version of this car is going to have a list price of more than £48,000 – which is quite a lot for a five-seat family SUV.

However, Toyota is aiming to make this figure irrelevant for many private customers by rolling out the bZ4X on a lease deal that makes the more conventional PCP finance scheme look a bit pricey. We wouldn’t say the ‘Kinto’ arrangement is particularly cheap, with a deposit of more than £3,500 and monthly payments of over £600. But then, it does include servicing, installation of a home charger and a period of access to Toyota’s ‘single-card’ public charging network – while costing less every month than the regular PCP.

Advertisement - Article continues below

We’ve seen others experimenting with ‘all-in’ lease arrangements before – some firms are using their all-electric models to play with moving the whole process online – but it seems quite significant that Toyota, one
of the most mainstream of brands, has chosen now to really push the idea (and through its showrooms, some of which will feature ‘bZ hub’ areas devoted to the EVs). 

As the transition to electric motoring continues to accelerate, manufacturers are going to have to use lots of tricks (or let’s call them novel approaches) to bring the buying process and ownership experience closer to as many customers as possible. We’ll see dozens of EVs unveiled in the months ahead; we may also see a varied line-up of ways of getting them onto our driveways.

Check out the latest Toyota news and reviews here...

Skip advert
Advertisement
Editor-at-large

John started journalism reporting on motorsport – specifically rallying, which he had followed avidly since he was a boy. After a stint as editor of weekly motorsport bible Autosport, he moved across to testing road cars. He’s now been reviewing cars and writing news stories about them for almost 20 years.

Skip advert
Advertisement

Recommended

What is an HPI check?
What is an hpi check
Tips & advice

What is an HPI check?

Many adverts will mention that a car is “HPI clear”, but what is an HPI check and should you get one on the car you're buying?
19 Apr 2024
Car valuations: your car could be worth more than you think
Hand building piles of coins
Tips & advice

Car valuations: your car could be worth more than you think

When buying or selling a car, you’ll want to know how much it’s worth but what’s the best way to find the true value of a car and once you know the va…
19 Apr 2024
Transferring a private number plate: a guide moving registration plates from car to car online
MINI number plate change
Tips & advice

Transferring a private number plate: a guide moving registration plates from car to car online

Need to know how to transfer a private number plate between vehicles? Our step-by-step guide breaks it down
9 Apr 2024
Selling a car with outstanding finance is easier than you think…
People signing dealership paperwork
Tips & advice

Selling a car with outstanding finance is easier than you think…

We look at whether you can sell a car with outstanding finance and things you should consider beforehand
5 Apr 2024

Most Popular

Car Deal of the Day: sensational BMW M2 is a bargain at this price!
BMW M2 - front tracking
News

Car Deal of the Day: sensational BMW M2 is a bargain at this price!

Our Day of the Day for 18 April is the formidable BMW M2 performance car
18 Apr 2024
New Nissan Qashqai gets angry, as best-selling family SUV receives aggressive facelift
Nissan Qashqai reveal - front
News

New Nissan Qashqai gets angry, as best-selling family SUV receives aggressive facelift

In addition to its new much sharper design, the Qashqai now features Google apps and voice assistant built in
17 Apr 2024
New 2024 Audi A3 takes the fight to BMW and Mercedes with £32k price tag
Audi A3 Saloon - front action
News

New 2024 Audi A3 takes the fight to BMW and Mercedes with £32k price tag

The updated Audi A3 is available now, with the hot S3 version due from May
16 Apr 2024