No longer a futuristic novelty, electric cars are becoming an increasingly common sight on Britain’s streets.
Most of the major car manufacturers are now either selling or developing electric and hybrid models, even the supercar makers at Ferrari are planning on fitting every new car with a hybrid powertrain by 2019. There will be roughly 500,000 electric cars on Europe’s streets by the end of the year.
The Nissan LEAF is the world’s best-selling fully electric car, with more than 180,000 sold last year. It’s a true all-electric vehicle – with no range-extending or hybrid petrol engine in sight.
It comes in several variations, with prices ranging from £21,000 to £27,000 but that’s before the UK Government plug-in car grant of £4,500. WhatCar recommends a target price of £12,863-£24,535 for a new LEAF, which is also road tax and Congestion Charge exempt.
Petar and Lyuba Kralev are a London couple who traded in their Audi A3 Cabriolet and purchased the Nissan LEAF 24kwh, which comes with an everyday driving range of 124 miles. Their Leaf will soon have its two year anniversary with couple, who are now going the whole-hog and installing solar panels on their house, providing them with free electricity from renewable source.
Many potential customers looking at the EV market are put off by fears that the battery won’t carry them far enough, but Petar Kralev tells me this has not been an issue. Petar has a daily 40-60 minute commute between Romford and London’s Canary Wharf, and tells me he has never suffered from “range anxiety”, even on a 150 mile round trip.
I caught up with Petar Kralev and asked him about life with his electric motor.
Why the move to EV?
Electric vehicles are the cars of the future, there’s no doubt about it. They’re cheaper to run and also quieter than any other car on the road. I find it easier to drive an electric car compared to other options – more so than any other vehicle with an automatic transmission. All the power is instant, whether you’re moving or from a standstill.
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