Electric cars are renowned for being the answer the planet needs to reducing the number of fossil fuel burning vehicles on the road. But there’s much more to them than meets the eye. They are clearly better for the environment, but there are also plenty of other benefits to electric car ownership that you may be unaware of!
If you’ve been deliberating whether you should buy an electric car, here are 10 reasons why you should consider buying one.
10 Reasons to Buy an Electric Vehicle
1. Electric Cars are Better for the Planet
If you are concerned about your impact on the planet, buying an electric car is an excellent choice. Electric vehicles (EVs) emit as much as 80% less carbon dioxide than petrol vehicles.
Battery-powered EVs produce also 60% lower climate-changing emissions across their lives than a standard petrol vehicle. That’s even taking into account the manufacturing and shipping of the car!
2. Renewable Energy Sources
As part of New Zealand’s energy initiatives, about 80% of the electricity generated here is from renewable sources. Some of the major ways we generate electricity are from wind, hydro, and geothermal sources. So, even using electricity to charge up your car is fairly clean.
3. Easy Charging
Many people expect that the downside of owning an electric car would be charging it up. However, you can easily charge your car at home to keep it ready to go at all times. When you get home, simply plug it back in again.
If you do undertake a longer journey, public chargers are available roughly every 75km along the major highways. It’s unlikely that you will be caught short without a way to charge up your car.
4. Save Money
One unforeseen perk of having an electric car is that it could save you hundreds of dollars a year in fuel costs. Yes, you still have to pay for the electricity to charge up your car – but it costs the equivalent of spending 30-40 cents per litre on fuel, which is exceptionally affordable compared to current petrol prices.
You can save even more money by choosing an electricity supplier that offers off-peak electricity rates. Put your car on charge during these times to take advantage of lower costs.
5. Low Maintenance
EVs are known for being easier to maintain, as their motors contain fewer moving parts than a petrol engine. That means you could also be saving on repair costs.
They also tend to need fewer brake replacements. This is due to a regenerative braking system that feeds energy back to the battery when you ease off on the accelerator.
Additionally, electric cars don’t require oil, so you don’t have to check the oil or pay for oil changes or top-ups.
6. Speeds Up Quickly
As EVs don’t have to use gears to speed up, an electric car can set off quickly once you put your foot on the accelerator. It often takes electric car owners a while to get used to this, so when you first test drive an EV, make sure you take off carefully while you get accustomed to the force of the accelerator.
7. Quiet Motor
You can’t hear any sound from electric cars while you’re driving them, as the motors are almost silent when running on battery power. They are so quiet that there has even been some discussion around adding sound to EVs so that other cars and pedestrians can hear them coming.
8. Suitable for All Weather Conditions
Did you know that you can charge up your electric car in all weather conditions? The outdoor electric charging stations around the country are all suitable to be used even if it’s raining with no concern of getting an electric shock.
9. Great Resale Value
Many people are now choosing to switch over to electric cars as they need to replace their petrol vehicles. This is good news for electric car owners, whose vehicles may go up in value as the demand for EVs in New Zealand grows.
10. Batteries Last for a Long Time
Most batteries in electric cars come with a warranty to offer a guarantee that the battery will last a certain length of time. Typically, this would be either 5-8 years or 100,000km. This is great news for those buying a new electric car, as if the battery fails to stand the test of time, you can just get it replaced on warranty.
The government is offering an incentive to electric car owners known as the Clean Car Discount to encourage people to switch over from petrol vehicles.
What You Can Get
You can get quite a bit of money towards your electric car, thanks to the Government rebate scheme.
You could get up to $8625 for a new car or $3450 for a used one.
You could get up to $5750 for a new car or $2300 for a used one.
A rebate is payable only if the below criteria are fulfilled.
The vehicle must be:
a used imported light battery electric vehicle (BEV) or a new imported BEV
a used imported light plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) or a new imported PHEV
It must also:
- Have a 3 star or better safety rating
- Cost less than $80,000NZD
- Be registered in NZ for the first time from 1 July – 31 December 2021 (as of the time of writing)
Safe Charging Advice
There are a few things you should consider when charging up your electric vehicle to ensure that you do so safely. Here’s what you need to know:
- Only buy chargers from reliable suppliers, and check that the charger matches your vehicle’s requirements
Read any user guides and safety information that come with the charger
- Check if the charger is compliant with WorkSafe NZ Electric Vehicle Charging Safety guidelines and is installed according to these and other NZ standards
- Check the supplier’s test certificates and Supplier Declaration of Conformity (SDoC)
- Use a registered electrician to get a certified installation and make sure they have the installation instructions for your specific charger
- Get a Certificate of Compliance from your electrician after the installation
Frequently Asked Questions
Where Can I Buy an Electric Car From?
One of the best places to buy an electric car is from Stadium Cars. Find electric vehicles at excellent prices by browsing through their site or visiting a car yard and speaking with one of their helpful staff. They will be more than happy to advise on which type of electric car might suit you best.
What’s The Difference Between an AC and DC Charger?
You’ll see that EV chargers are labelled either AC or DC. Many people considering buying an electric car want to know what these mean.
AC stands for alternating current. This is the type of electricity that comes from the grid. However, electric car batteries can only store DC power. So, if you use an AC charger, the car will convert the power to DC to store it.
DC stands for direct current, and this is the type of power EV batteries can store. EV chargers save your vehicle from having to convert the power to store it, as it’s already converted before entering the car. DC chargers can therefore charge up the battery faster than AC ones.
How to Charge an EV at Home
Even the best EVs will eventually get an empty ‘tank’ after hours of driving. However, you can charge up your electric vehicle at home. There are two main options for home charging:
3-Pin Charging Cable
The 3-pin charging cable is a portable charger that usually comes with the vehicle. Just like any other appliance you own, this can be plugged into a regular power point. Most of these have an inbuilt ICCPD (in-cable control and protection device) to keep you safe. Never use one that doesn’t have this!
Charging using this method can take up to 12 – 14 hours to reach full battery.
If you’re looking for a faster charging solution, you can install a wall-mounted charging unit in your home or garage. While they cost $1300 - $3000 plus installation fees, many EV owners think it’s worth the cost to be able to charge up their vehicles in as little as 4 hours.
How Long Does It Take to Charge an Electric Car?
Fully charging up your EV at home can take anywhere from 4 – 14 hours, depending on the type of charger. As discussed above, a wall charger is the quickest way, charging up your car in just 4 hours. 3 pin charging cables are portable but take longer – as much as 14 hours.
If you’re out on the road using a public charger, you can use a fast AC charger to charge up the car in 4 hours or a rapid DC charge which takes just 45 minutes.
How Much Does It Cost to Charge an EV?
It can cost you as little as $3 per 100km to charge an electric car at home. Of course, the overall cost will depend on many factors, such as how much you use the vehicle, how far you drive it, and the type of driving (e.g., going up hills). This cost is the equivalent of paying about $0.30 cents per litre of petrol.
How to Make a Single Charge Last Longer
To make the most of your charge, there are a few things you can do to make it last as long as possible:
- Heaters can quickly burn through the battery, so crank them while your car is still plugged in to warm up the inside
- Keep tyres at the correct pressure
- Drive smoothly
- Keep the car light, removing any heavy items you don’t need in it
- Make sure the car is fully charged before you unplug it
How Far Can I Go Before I Have to Recharge?
How far your EV will travel before it needs recharging will depend entirely on the type of battery your car has. For example, some Hyundai models have a 64kWh battery which can go up to 484km before needing a recharge. Alternatively, the Nissan Leaf has a more lightweight 40kWh battery that can take you up to 270km.
These capacities may reduce over time, but you can still expect your EV to go a fair distance on just one charge.
What is the State of Health (SoH)?
The State of Health offers a way of measuring the battery life of a BEV. It provides an indication of the condition of the battery, which especially comes in handy for those buying an electric car secondhand. Always find out what the SoH is before making a decision so you can avoid purchasing a vehicle with a battery that’s deteriorated.
Just like phones, the battery life of EVs lower over time. They can become less able to store charge, meaning that you can drive only shorter distances despite the car being fully charged. While newer cars will have a warranty to guarantee the battery, you might be buying a secondhand one where the warranty has expired. Don’t get caught out buying a car that doesn’t hold charge well!
The SoH is a more useful data point to look for than just how far the car has travelled. Even vehicles that have primarily sat in garages could have batteries that have significantly deteriorated.
Buying an Electric Vehicle with Stadium Finance
If you haven’t saved up quite enough to buy an electric car outright, you can get a helping hand from the team at Stadium Finance. We now offer electric vehicle loans so you can drive off in your new environmentally-friendly car sooner than you expected.
Combine your government rebate with a competitive interest rate, and you’ll find that buying an electric car is far more affordable than you previously thought.
Stadium Finance is the go-to for people buying electric cars in New Zealand because we offer flexible payment options and pre-approvals, so you know how much you are allowed to borrow before you choose a car. We also make decisions on loan applications within 24 hours to get you into your new vehicle as soon as possible.
Contact one of our friendly team today to find out more about how we can help you buy an electric vehicle. We’d love to hear more about your situation and see what we can offer you to get you into your new car faster.