An electric car owner’s story – Energy Alton at the Classic Car Show

For the first time, The Herald Classic Car Show and Rally in Alton town centre in September included a display of six electric vehicles with their owners – a VW e-up!, a Renault Zoe, a Nissan Leaf, a Tesla Model S, a BMWi and a Nissan van (the van is in East Hampshire District Council’s fleet).  There was a real buzz around the display and vehicle owners were chatting to interested people all day.

The Government has announced plans to ban all new petrol and diesel cars and vans from 2040, amid fears that rising levels of nitrogen oxide from vehicle emissions pose a major risk to public health.  This has prompted lots of questions about the practicalities of owning and  driving an electric vehicle.  Costs are falling and the mileage that can be driven on one battery charge is increasing steadily.  Charge points are becoming much more widely available too.

Click here for the story of Sonia and Roja Clark, who own a Renault Zoe Classic Car

Electric cars are

  • Good for the environment – zero tailpipe emissions
  • Good for daily urban commutes and local use
  • Low running costs
  • Here to stay – government policy & rapidly-developing technology
  • Supported by government grants and incentives


Sources of financial information

The Energy Saving Trust’s website has short videoclips covering most questions potential buyers may have.  There is information on offsetting the higher initial purchase price against much lower fuel costs; also on low or zero Vehicle Excise Duty, probably lower servicing costs.  And tips on finding low tariffs for overnight charging. grants included by dealers in the vehicle’s price.  Currently 35% of purchase price, up to a max £4,500.

Electric vehicle users can receive government funding to install a homecharger for their plug-in – a 75% contribution towards the cost of one chargepoint and its installation up to max. £500 (including VAT) per household/eligible vehicle.

Which car to buy this site is a partnership between the Government and the car industry – information on 20+ electric cars. Or Next Green Car

Charging points

ZAP MAP has a map of charging points for electric car drivers in the UK.  East Hants District Council are installing more points soon.