I’ve always liked cars, and I’ve had all sorts. Big cars, little cars, new cars, vintage cars, diesel cars, petrol cars … but all with one thing in common. An engine. With the move to Electric Vehicles gathering pace, and with an outright ban on internal combustion engine (ICE) cars from 2030, I wondered whether I would like electric motoring. Could I live with reduced range between having to refuel, refuelling (or charging) taking hours rather than minutes? What are they actually like to drive and more importantly, what are they like to live with as a means of transport?
I wanted a way to find out without committing to buy one. Certainly, I wasn’t prepared to jump into EV ownership and part with my ICE car without understanding the day to day first. My solution? Lease one. If I like it, I can look around to see what to save up for. If I don’t, then just get the leasing company to take it away. So it was that a shiny red Kia Niro appeared on my driveway in July, courtesy of an offer from EDF. After all, they want to sell electricity… Here’s my view after the first three months.
as Fiona Petto, from the days of the Scorpion Inn back in the 60s when my parents (John & Toinette) bought it and built on the Yew Tree dance hall but that is another story. Years past, I married Adrian (Adie) Wisher, had children and moved to Dorset where this story begins.
As a result of an unfortunate incident involving a tractor, I had to look for a replacement van! I am very aware, as a regular cyclist, how damaging the effects of motor vehicle emissions are on the environment and on our health. In the UK alone, more than 50,000 premature deaths a year can be attributed to vehicle emissions. I also know how big a hole in my pocket filling up my diesel van was making each month.
I knew that an electric vehicle could be the answer, but I still needed a van. Following a bit of research, I discovered the Nissan eNV200. But was it practical and was it affordable? Well it was certainly affordable, with a 100 miles costing about £3 of electricity, compared to about £15 in my old diesel van. Coupled with my solar panels, zero road fund licence rate and very low servicing costs, I was certainly going to be quids in.
But was it practical? It was significantly smaller than my previous van but with van hire from £30 a day the crucial consideration was range. Nissan optimistically quote a range of 106 miles on a full charge, but real world conditions make it more like 75 miles. It takes a different approach, but you soon adapt, taking every opportunity to charge. Unlike petrol stations, electricity is everywhere! The ‘rapid’ chargers as found in the Co-op car park are only required for long journeys or ’emergency’ top ups, 99% of the time you can charge at home or at work. Continue reading →