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5 min read

Electric vehicles subscription: Is now the right time?

Fuel prices are through the roof! Should you get an EV?
Electric vehicles subscription: Is now the right time?
  • With the prices of petrol and diesel ever increasing, it may make financial sense to get an EV.
  • If you're new to electric cars, subscribing to one for a month, or two, can be a good way to see how it fits your needs.
  • Some car subscription providers offer free charging, or cheaper electricity tariffs, which brings the cost down significantly.
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A sweeping change to our way of life is accelerating towards us. With rising fuel and energy costs, set to double by the end of 2022, is now the time to be weighing up if that new car purchase is right for you? Or whether running a car on subscription still makes sense considering the recent energy and fuel increases?

Petrol and diesel prices are going up!

Petrol and diesel have hit record highs this month at the forecourt, prompting an unprecedented drop in fuel duty to help motorists cope with the soaring costs of living.

One driver who has yet to be helped with the soaring costs is the electric vehicle owner. Does this mean electric vehicles are no longer value for money or cost effective versus their internal combustion engine counterparts?

To break this down we need to take a look back at historical fuel and electric costings.

In the past two years we have seen immense volatility within the oil and gas industry. Back in the summer of 2020, at the height of the COVID 19 lockdown restrictions, we saw the price of petrol fall below £1 per litre. How my wallet misses those days, I recently turned home fearing the fuel cost of my impulse trip to the drive through.

Electric car tariffs were readily available and were trading at around 5p per kWh of electricity for those who charged during certain periods overnight.

Jumping back to today's prices and even with the record breaking, balance sheet busting fuel duty cut, prices are a staggering 60% higher for fuel at the pumps.

Electricity supplier Octopus Energy's tariff 'GO' for electric vehicle owners, sits at an equally awful percentage increase of 50% at 7.5p per kWh.

But here is where things get interesting, if you're into maths and percentages that is.

The amount it will cost you to fill up your petrol car has gone up by far more in pounds than the percentage differences would suggest.

For example! If you have a pretty standard sized car with a 50-litre fuel capacity, your bill at the petrol forecourt has risen from £50 to £80 (assuming £1.60 per litre petrol)

That's an increase of £30!

Is it still cheap to charge an electric car?

It's important to compare like for like when doing these sums. Let's make the assumption that the petrol engine achieves an average of 40mpg, resulting in 440 miles of range before running empty.

In the electric vehicle world, a standard electric car is expected to achieve around 4 miles per kWh. This would mean most electric vehicles need charging twice to achieve the same distance as petrol's one full tank. 110kWh of electricity would give 440 miles of range, in this scenario. Now if the owner was able to charge each night at the old 5p per kWh rate, the 110kwh would cost only £5.50 for a full tank of fuel. A saving of £44.50 over the 2020 prices.

Is fuel more expensive than electric?

Jump back, again, to today's prices and that 110kWh of electricity at 7.5p is costing you a whopping... £8.25 and a saving of £71.75 over a tank of fuel. That headline grabbing 50% increase doesn't seem so bad, especially when compared to the tribulations of the petrol driver who has seen their 50 litres of fuel rise from £50 to £80.

I personally would take the £2.75 electricity increase over the £30 petrol pumping, wallet robbery.

Does this mean now is the best time to be buying an electric vehicle?


Right now is the best time to be calculating return on investment, if your journey cost is the main factor of going green. With no end in sight to the fuel crisis, it is a question of how much worse can things get for the commuter.

And No!

With such global unrest and volatility in the commodities markets, I feel we are wobbling at the top of a very rickety pyramid of cards. One small push could very well trigger a recession and I would be very wary about committing to a long term investment, such as an electric vehicle.

However, dipping my toes into the electric vehicle world with a short term lease agreement seems ideal to help navigate through the ever rising costs of the crude oil giants.

Taking advantage of such special offers as elmoCharge which gives elmo subscribers access to over 20,000 charge points from 20 network providers.

Another handy bonus of car subscription is the availability of getting your hands on an EV without a lengthy wait. I have recently decided against purchasing the new MG ZS long range EV, due to the waiting time of over 6 months. You can also learn more about the difference between leasing and subscription, or car subscription vs buying with our expert guides on the topics.

What costs more per mile?

As our sums from our earlier example suggest, the price per mile of fuel sits at just over 18p per mile = £80/440miles.

The price per mile of electricity works out as a rather enticing 1.875p per mile = £8.25/440miles.

It's not always easy being green, but it sure is cheaper.

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