The Rise of Electric Cars

The ascension of Eco-Technology is making a huge impact on our daily lives with the growing presence of energy efficient household appliances, smart devices and more environmentally friendly vehicles. Electric cars and hybrid motors are now growing in popularity and seem primed to revolutionise our relationship with the environment.

The campaign Go Ultra Low is predicting that by 2027 electric cars will dominate the motor industry marketplace, which would mean that the UK government’s target to ensure all vehicles are electric could be achieved as planned by 2040. The motor industry and the government both back the campaign, demonstrated by policies which allow you to get a government grant of £4,500 towards purchasing an electric vehicle, no matter which model or size, providing emissions through the tailpipe do not exceed 75g of carbon dioxide over one kilometer. The model must also be capable of travelling for at least 10 kilometers with zero emissions.

If you are considering whether an electric car is suitable for your needs, take note of the following:

  • You can obtain financial assistance towards the purchase price via the government grant
  • You can save on annual running costs (up to approximately £750 per year)
  • Rapid car chargers are installed at 96 per cent of motorway service stations
  • Your vehicle can be charged to 80 per cent capacity in under 30 minutes
  • The best performing hybrids can travel up to 800 miles on one charge

Car sales

Electric vehicle sales are soaring, reaching £2.5 million new car sales in 2015. Likewise, charging points are popping up all over the UK, including at supermarkets, holiday properties, hospitals, hotels and B&Bs. Look out for the green and white signs depicting a car and a plug, with an arrow pointing to the right and clear wording indicating “Electric vehicle charging.”

What to look for in an electric car

When contemplating the purchase of an electric car, there are a few things to bear in mind. If you are interested in the technology, you can choose from:

  • 100 per cent electric vehicle – zero emissions and no combustion engine
  • Plug-in hybrids – a combustion engine and an electric engine
  • Extended range electric vehicle (E-REV) – chargeable battery and electric engine plus combustion engine
  • Fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV) – hydrogen fuel cell stack powers the electric motor

Parking to charge

 Some people have voiced concerns that there will not be enough charging stations available to recharge cars or that non-electric vehicles will make unauthorised use of parking bays meant for electric cars. As a result, some charging areas are designated as only available to park in if you are actually charging your vehicle. These bays are clearly marked and are designed to prevent unauthorised use of electric vehicle parking spaces.

Over time, it’s likely that more and more parking bays will be provided for electric cars and fewer will be allocated for those powered by diesel or petrol. This is good news for consumers who will ultimately save on running costs, whilst also kinder to the environment with regards to emissions and pollution. While the government grant is still available, now is the time to think smart and switch to cleaner, greener motoring.

Disclaimer: The information provided through Legislation Watch is for general guidance only and is not legal advice. Legislation Watch is not a substitute for Health and Safety consultancy. You should seek independent advice about any legal matter.

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