An electric vehicle (EV) is one powered – in full or in part – by a battery that plugs directly into mains electricity.
There are a few key types of electric and hybrid vehicles that you could consider.
Powered solely by a battery charged from mains electricity. Typically has a range of around 100 miles. Can be driven by holders of automatic licences, since it has no gearbox.
PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle)
Plug-in battery plus internal combustion engine (ICE). Once its pure-electric range of 10 miles or more is used, the PHEV reverts to hybrid power. Ideal for longer journeys.
E-REV (Extended Range Electric Vehicle)
Like a Pure-EV but with a more limited range – approx. 40 miles on the electric battery. However an on-board ICE-powered generator extends the range to around 300 miles.
While charging a Pure-EV from flat to full can take around eight hours using a domestic socket, we recommend installing a dedicated home charge point, which can charge a Pure-EV in just half that time. It is currently possible for EV drivers to get free installation of home charge points with 75% funding – up to £900 – provided by the Office for Low Emissions Vehicles (OLEV), this is then ‘topped-up’ by ChargePlace Scotland through the Energy Saving Trust to cover the remaining costs.
Living with an Electric Vehicle
Watch the Energy Saving Trust video featuring Robert Llewellyn of Scrapheap Challenge.