Affordable Electric Cars 2019

There seems to be a general misconception in the market that electric cars are expensive and beyond the reach of most consumers. Yes, it is true, that certain EVs do have a price tag that is not for the faint hearted, but that is only one side of the coin.

Affordability is real in the electric vehicle sector, as a result of the introduction of competitively priced, mass market models like the Nissan Leaf and Renault Zoe.  This, coupled with the UK Government plug-in grant (PiCG), has introduced a new era of affordable electric cars for the UK driver.

Here, we’ll look at what makes the Zoe and Leaf so affordable as electric cars.

Renault Zoe

Credit: My Renault Zoe

Though we automatically connect the Zoe with electric vehicles, the genesis of this successful EV range was a concept car in 2005, for urban transportation with a petrol engine.

Zoe was introduced in 2012 at the Geneva Motor Show with deliveries commencing in France later that year.  Since then, the EV has established itself as the top selling electric cars in its home market and Europe. 

The Zoe starts at £21,220, before the deduction of the plug-in grant of £3,500, with a PiCG adjusted cost of £17,720.  The battery pack can be leased from £49 a month depending on the mileage and length of the lease.  

Credit: Renault

Renault guarantees battery performance to at least 75% of the original capacity.  The Zoe comes in two variants, Dynamique Nav and the S Edition, and has a WLTP driving range up to 186 miles.

A new Renault Zoe is is expected later this year as the French manufacturer seeks to strengthen its portfolio, given the competition from its rivals.

For those with smaller budgets, there is also the compact and distinctive Renault TWIZY seating two, with prices starting from £6,690. Whatcar? gives the model a rating of 4 stars, with affordability a pro if the battery is leased, a good real world range and a spacious boot. 

Nissan Leaf

Credit: Nissan

Nissan, the manufacturer of the easily recognisable Leaf electric car, has been involved with EVs since the 1990’s. The Leaf was introduced in 2009 and launched in 2010.

Since then, the Leaf has been one of the top three selling EVs in Europe and globally.In the UK it continues to command an impressive market share of 36%. The latest variant of the Leaf, the Nissan Leaf E+, was announced in January 2019, with an increased range of 239 miles.  

The Nissan E+ starts from £35,895 to include the UK government plug-in grant. The car comes with a 62 kWh battery delivering 340 NM/RPM maximum engine torque and a top speed of 98 MPH.

The lower priced Nissan Leaf Acenta starts from £27,995, including the £3,500 government incentive. The car comes with a 40 kWh battery capable of delivering a WLTP combined cycle range up to 168 miles. The engine delivers a maximum torque of 320 NM/RPM with a maximum speed of 90 MPH.

Both variants come in the same body style, a five-seater hatchback. The Leaf continues to receive good reviews, with Top Gear giving an overall verdict of 8 out of 10, identifying affordability as a pro for the vehicle.   Parkers overall rating is 4.3 and describes driving the Leaf as a ‘wholesome experience’. 

More Affordable Electric Cars in 2019?

We’re sure to see more affordable electric cars released this year, and in the future. Other cheap electric cars to be aware of in 2019 include: the KIA SOUL EV, Citroen C-Zero and the Volkswagen e-up!

Ready to buy? Read more about financing the purchase of an electric car.


Author

Ashvin Suri

Ashvin has been involved with the renewables, energy efficiency and infrastructure sectors since 2006. He is passionate about the transition to a low-carbon economy and electric transportation. Ashvin commenced his career in 1994, working with US investment banks in New York. Post his MBA from the London Business School (1996-1998), he continued to work in investment banking at Flemings (London) and JPMorgan (London). His roles included corporate finance advisory, M&A and capital raising. He has been involved across diverse industry sectors, to include engineering, aerospace, oil & gas, airports and automotive across Asia and Europe. In 2010, he co-founded a solar development platform, for large scale ground and roof solar projects to include the UK, Italy, Germany and France. He has also advised on various renewable energy (wind and solar) utility scale projects working with global institutional investors and independent power producers (IPP’s) in the renewable energy sector. He has also advised in key international markets like India, to include advising the TVS Group, a multi-billion dollar industrial and automotive group in India. Ashvin has also advised Indian Energy, an IPP backed by Guggenheim (a US$ 165 billion fund). He has also advised AMIH, a US$ 2 billion, Singapore based group. Ashvin has also worked in the real estate and infrastructure sector, to including working with the Matrix Group (a US$ 4 billion property group in the UK) to launch one of the first few institutional real estate funds for the Indian real estate market. The fund was successfully launched with significant institutional support from the UK/ European markets. He has also advised on water infrastructure, to include advising a Swedish clean technology company in the water sector. He is also a member of the Forbury Investment Network advisory committee. He has also been involved with a number of early stage ventures.

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