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  • "Fuelcard Frank"

Blog 27: Time to buy an EV Van……. Or maybe not?

The Headline blazes proudly that Vauxhall are now offering the Vivaro EV medium van at over £2500 lower than previously priced. It also has a longer range on a full charge. So has the EV van now finally arrived as a practical deal? Well, lets take a few facts and see.

Let’s look at Range anxiety first: The Vivaro EV now has a WLTP range of 217 miles. That is of course from 100% full charge to zero, and with no payload. So when you fill it with the tools of your trade of the goods you’re transporting, that range will be somewhat less. Also who deliberately runs a vehicle of any type until it runs out of fuel? Of course not, you fill up about when it’s a quarter left. So that brings the usable range in reality down to not much more than 120 miles at best. Then in winter when you use the heater and lights, that will bring the range down further, so if your daily drive is less than 100 miles it may still suit your needs……. well perhaps?

Let’s look at purchase and running costs: The new Vauxhall Vivaro EV is £50466 inc VAT (**I never expected to be saying a medium van would cost over £50k…Wow!) That’s before you’ve even charged it up! Now Vauxhall also offer the same Vivaro van as a 1.6 litre Turbo Diesel for £33066 inc VAT. If you buy the diesel version therefore you’ve just saved £17400. Now what can you do with that £17400 you’ve potentially saved? Well you could use it as deposit on a second van and expand your business, or use it to buy diesel, which at current rates would allow your driver to travel around 290,000 miles! Now not many vans do that many miles in their lifetime, and remember that this is before you’ve even paid for 1 kwh of electricity in the EV van, or purchased the plug in charging port which is of course extra! Add that on and the diesel van can do half a million miles or more before price parity comes even close!

And Depreciation: It’s been shown so far that EV’s depreciate as fast or faster than ICE vehicles on average. ICE engines when properly serviced are capable of those kinds of mileages mentioned above, but EV batteries deteriorate every year, so a 10 year old EV is likely to have lost at least 30% of its initial range, probably much more, and new batteries are so expensive that you may as well scrap it and buy a new one……. most likely an ICE van after that experience!

Finally: I'm not being anti-Vauxhall here by the way, perish the thought, they make good vans and we run them (ICE versions), it's the same for all makes, it's just that Vauxhall happened to be advertising the benefits of their new EV Vivaro and I picked their headline. In the end it's your choice. If having an EV Van is more important than saving £17400 on each one that you buy, then you've already made that decision. Personally I'll keep the cash and keep out of the politics, after all you just can't believe anything politicians say!

By Fuelcard Frank

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