Editor Keith Adams’ recent article about how he is falling out of love with driving has got me thinking.
Perhaps the root cause of our disenchantment with driving in the final decade of new petrol and diesel cars is the sheer volume of traffic on the road. Driving would be alright if it wasn’t for all the other motorists on the road at the same time as yours truly!
As stated, from 2030 you will no longer be able to to buy a new petrol or diesel car, and if having a new jalopy outside your house is essential to your lifestyle, then it appears you only have one choice, electric.
I perceive that there is a widespread assumption that all the vehicles on the road will be replaced by electric vehicles, and that the National Grid, or equivalent if you are not a UK resident, will not be able to cope with all the recharging. Certainly all the manufacturers would like that to happen. But will it?
The advantage of petrol and diesel cars are that performance degradation over time is slight, and they can be quickly refuelled for long distance travel. In addition to this they are cheap to buy used, from as little as a few hundred pounds. It is this rock bottom bangernomics that has resulted in our overcrowded roads.
You don’t have to be a member of the Gentry or a high-powered executive to be mobile. But is this all about to change when we go electric?
Is the cost model going to change?
Let’s be blunt, many of you reading this don’t want to buy a new car. Like me, you make do with a used car, probably a diesel, because of the widespread perception that they are more economical.
As I see it, at this point in time, a used electric car does not look like very good value for money. But if we want to stay mobile we might not have any choice. My concerns about electric cars relate to battery life.
By the time a car in theory depreciates into the kind of price range that might tickle my fancy, the battery might be shot and too expensive to replace. The most I have ever spent on a car was £6700, and that was more than a decade ago.
And lots of people can only afford to spend a tenth of that on a car. How will they remain mobile? How will they get to work to pay their way in the world?
Keeping old petrols and diesels on the road
Will it be cheaper to get your local garage to patch up your petrol and diesel car instead of going electric? After all, I have two classic Minis, both manufactured in 1990. I pay to keep them going and it probably costs me less annually than a monthly payment for a new electric vehicle.
In a cost of living crisis we seem to be embracing a new form of technology that excludes the poor. At the moment electric cars are expensive, and while costs may come down as demand increases, they may not come down far enough by 2030 to suit the budgets of existing car buyers.
I suspect vehicle manufacturers are concerned that car sales will fall off a cliff in 2030 if they can’t get prices down to an acceptable level that will appeal to new car buyers. The move to electric may well cause great upheaval and trauma in the European motor industry. Everything is being turned on its head.
It may well be that, after 2030, traffic volumes may begin to decline, as the availability of cheap used internal combustion engined cars falls, and in their place come electric vehicles with dubious battery life, that may or may not be value for money. Will the less affluent be priced off the roads?
In the end only the used car market will decide, and we will have to wait for that. When it does come time to make the big switch, you can obtain competitive electric vehicle car insurance with ROLLiN’ to ensure your ride is protected.