Introducing Nick, a Ford Focus driver based in Brighton. He works in London, goes on regular cycling trips, and until recently had never driven an electric vehicle.
Despite this, we wanted to see if he had any reservations about electric vehicles, and if driving one for a week would change his mind. With just an Electrocard in hand, here's his account of how the week went.
Let’s get plugged in…
Car: Ford Focus estate (2015)
On average, how often do you drive and what's your weekly mileage? 1-2 short drives per week, with the occasional long drive (approx. 50-100 miles per week)
Do you enjoy driving? Yes, but I don't drive to work, so that's probably why!
What's your current refuelling behaviour? Run down to a quarter tank, then fill up to full - though with fuel costs rising, this might need to change!
What are your driving likes? Road trips across the countryside, quiet night driving, and driving with the music blasting.
What are your driving dislikes? Traffic(!), tailgaters and aggressive white vans.
Which electric vehicle will you be driving? Polestar 2.
What do you know about EVs? Not much! I'm aware of Tesla, but that's about it.
Do you have any worries about driving electric? What are you expecting to be your biggest hurdles? I'm slightly nervous about the range - for instance, how much battery should I have left before charging again? Other than that, I think finding available chargers might be difficult and finding the time to charge - I'm not entirely sure how long charging takes!
Electric Week Summary
First things first, did you enjoy driving electric for the week? Yes, absolutely! I was a little apprehensive at first but found it incredibly easy to drive. My range anxiety disappeared as soon as I saw the dashboard - everything was designed to be intuitive and easy to use.
Did driving electric exceed your expectations? It really did. I didn't know what to expect, but I found the car a joy to drive - rapid acceleration, smooth handling, and a high tech interior. I generally like driving anyway, but during this week, I was actually excited to get on the road.
Did you find your worries unfounded? Generally, yes - the Electroverse app certainly helped too. One of my concerns was finding available chargers, so not only could I see this in real-time via the Electroverse app (so helpful!), I could also filter by rapid charging to ensure I wasn't charging for too long.
How did you find using Electroverse? Extremely easy. Just tap and go - loved it! The app filters in particular made finding available chargers a breeze, and the route mapping function really helped give me peace of mind, knowing that my journey was taking me past suitable charging points.
Upon reflection, would you have driven further afield? Yes, I think so. Having discovered that you can use the Electroverse card abroad, I would have been keen to research a route to France - or maybe even further!
Would you consider buying an electric vehicle in the future? Would love to! The technology already feels reliable and will hopefully become more affordable over time (leasing feels like a more realistic option at the moment). The only downside for me was the length of time spent charging, however, as I didn't complete an overnight slow charge (as so many EV drivers do), I was reliant on topping up on the go. If I were to buy an electric car, I would 100% invest in a home charger, or find a slow on-street charger near me (which I didn't do this week!).
What advice would you give to someone who has never driven an electric car? Range anxiety is exaggerated - a full battery charge is not far off a full tank of fuel in terms of distance (depending on the car of course!). When calculating cost-benefit, the difference is massive - a full charge at home can cost as little as £8 compared to almost £80 for a full tank. You'll save in the long run!
Any final comments? In the handful of times it's happened, I've already learnt how frustrating it is to have chargers blocked by non-EVs! I'll definitely be more aware of where I'm parking in future.
How many miles did you drive over the week? 329 miles total.
How much did you spend and what charging speeds did you use? £75 (148 kWh) using rapid chargers exclusively - this would have been a lot less had I charged overnight using an on-street charger.
How much CO2 did you save? 39 kg.
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