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Latest Telegraph Puff For Electric Cars

May 20, 2017

By Paul Homewood


h/t Patsy Lacey


The Telegraph seem to be running puff pieces for electric cars nearly everyday now:



The cost of owning an electric car will fall to the same level as petrol-powered vehicles next year, according to bold new analysis from UBS which will send shockwaves through the automobile industry.

Experts from the investment bank’s “evidence lab” made the prediction after tearing apart one of the current generation of electric cars to examine the economics of electric vehicles (EVs).

They found that costs of producing EVs were far lower than previously thought but there is still great potential to make further savings, driving down the price of electric cars.


Needless to say, these conclusions arise from a theoretical study by UBS, who probably have a vested interest somewhere along the line in all of this.


On the ground there is no evidence of the price gap closing. The basic price of the Nissan Leaf is £26180, before the govt rebate of £4500. The Ford Focus is an equivalent model, and the price of this is £19695.


Sales of pure electric cars are still struggling to get off the ground, accounting for just 0.4% of overall car sales last year in the UK.

Even including plug in hybrids, the figure still only rises to 1.4%.

There are a number of reasons why drivers are discouraged from buying electric, and cost is only one.

Yahoo report that the charging network is rapidly becoming overburdened, despite the still tiny number of cars. Apparently this is leading to drivers facing queues and quarrels!

There is believed to be 97000 plug in cars on Britain’s roads now, along with 12500 charging points. According to the Car Keys website:


Sales of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles are rising rapidly, but with limited access to charging points, increasing numbers of drivers are falling victim to what’s becoming known as ‘charge rage’.

There’s been an increase in reports of drivers squabbling or scuffling over access to charging points, often when people take too long charging their car and prevent others from doing the same.

Many electric vehicle internet forums also feature dozens of threads about ‘ICE-ing’, the term used for when the driver of an internal combustion engine car parks in a designated electric car zone.

More than 17,000 hybrid and electric cars were sold this March alone, while there’s estimated to be more than 70,000 pure electric vehicles alone on British roads now.

Given that there are only around 10,000 public charging points across the country that works out at roughly seven cars to every charger, and that’s before plug-in hybrids are taken into consideration.

Worse, around a quarter of charging points in the UK are ‘slow’ chargers, which need between six and eight hours on average to fully charge the battery pack of an electric vehicle.

For motorists on the move this is an unacceptable amount of time, which increases pressure to find a ‘fast’ or ‘rapid’ charger, both of which can charge the cars at a much faster rate.

Compared to slow chargers, a fast charger can charge an electric car up in around four hours, while rapid chargers take just half an hour to charge the batteries from flat to full.

Charging points are also expensive to install, with a basic slow charging costing approximately £1,400 to set up while a rapid charger can cost as much as £22,000.

As a result, companies are reluctant to fork out that much money for fast and rapid chargers, meaning that the number of electrified vehicles is quickly outstripping charger access.

Philip Gomm from the RAC Foundation told the Guardian: “To roll out a network of charging points is an immense task and there will be practical problems if the rate of EV take-up continues.

“Two charging points at a motorway services are fine – unless you have four cars wanting to use them. There are only so many cups of coffee you can drink.”


As ever, the question of cost is crucial. Clearly the slow and “fast” chargers are a waste of space, but the rapid ones cost £22000. And as the article says, companies are reluctant to shell out this much money for no good reason.

The UBS study believes that electric cars will account for 14% of new car sales  by 2025. That’s 300,000 plus in the UK. Instead of having 97000 electric cars on the road, we could soon be talking of a million, based on those figures.

That would imply upwards of 100,000 charging points. At £22000 a time, the cost would be £2.2bn. Who’s going to pay?

  1. It doesn't add up... permalink
    May 20, 2017 4:51 pm

    There are 5 spaces in my local supermarket/town shopping centre car park (out of several hundred spaces) for charging EVs. Mostly, they are empty, aside from the visiting Teslas advertised as for sale (I’ve even seen the pretentious TES57LA number plate on one of them) – one at a time. The local BMW dealership seems to be next in line to use it as an advertising location.

    Presumably every owner will need their own £1,400 charger to handle the morning commute. The £22,000 jobs might not be a particularly good investment: what capacity utilisation could you expect over a typical week for one in a city centre? Do these costs include the beefing up of the grid and local power distribution networks to supply power in quantity?

  2. rifleman1853 permalink
    May 20, 2017 4:53 pm

    Re. the above fairy story in the Telegraph, I found this post from Rod Evans interesting and thought-provoking:

    Here is the maths, using post Brexit units.

    34 million cars on UK roads currently.
    8,000 miles average millage/yr by British drivers
    Total miles driven on UK roads = 272 billion miles
    Say 40 miles/gal average, (I am being very generous here).
    Total gals of fuel/yr consumed on British roads = 6.8 billion gals
    Energy value is 40kWh/ gallon of fuel (UK gals) = 272 billion kWhH/yr
    This is 0.75 tWh/day.

    To put this into everyday scale. That is roughly 35 average size power stations of 1 Giga Watt running flat out day and night to provide power to charge our motive power demand here in the UK!

    Now do you see the problem. I have not even begun to factor in power loss between generators and the domestic charging point. Allowing for maintenance and repairs we need 40 more power stations just to replace fuel going into our tanks, if we go electric.

    Oh, I see it, all too clearly, Mr Evans!! And I’ve no doubt that, in the fullness of time (as they are finding now with solar and wind subsidies), the truth of what Mrs Thatcher was wont to say to anyone rash enough to speak to her about ‘government money’:

    “What government money? The government doesn’t have any money!”

    And, as our government seemed to have reversed course from when David Cameron announced his intention to “get rid of all that green cr@p”, and are busily engaged in either closing down every practical, dependable and cost-effective power station that we have, or making them commercially unviable, just where is all that power to come from?

    Equally, as pointed out, above, regardless of what they would like to do, how many companies and local authorities will be able to afford to put in enough charging points to cope with a million cars? Some local and national road authorities seem hard pressed to even to pay for enough tarmac to fill the gaping potholes in not just minor roads, but even motorways – which is why you see cars swerving all over the M.60. And as for the roads in Rossendale; words fail me . . .

    • mikewaite permalink
      May 20, 2017 5:13 pm

      rifleman , your useful reminder of the onus that personal and possibly commercial electric transport puts on the National Grid has a very positive side .
      Apart from the fact that I personally would love an electric car , and living on a busy road , electric cars and vans would make life immensely more pleasant , let us remember what Winston Churchill said in the 1950s when a rail strike loomed .
      He had no love of labour or the unions but he said that noone in their right mind picks an argument with the rail unions because the country depends on their transport so much. Again about 15 years ago when lorry drivers organised closure of oil refineries over the high cost of fuel and tax , there was similar threat to the country’s economy .
      Transport , personal and commercial , is absolutely essential to our current standard of living and if transport becomes electric the Grid will have to expand , and become totally reliable . It will not be tolerated that car and trucks can only run if the wind blows or the sun shines .
      Moving to electric transport is the best argument for keeping conventional , stable power generation and limiting the unreliable renewables . The govt can easily bully and bamboozle ordinary citizens into accepting domestic blackouts , but stop the trucking companies from fulfilling their contracts and orders and having idle drivers hanging around and all H*ll will break out.

    • Hick From The Sticks permalink
      May 21, 2017 8:36 am

      Assuming a continued growth in car usage and using a Nissan Leaf as the base vehicle and 12,000 annual mileage and 34 million vehicles, a Nissan Leaf (according to Nissan) will do 100 miles on a 30.0 kWh charge. So annually it needs 120 charges, 3600 kWh for 34 million Nissan Leafs 122,400,000,000kWh which I think is 122.4 tWh. or about 0.3tWh per day (less on Sundays more during the week). Heavy use before and after Bank Holiday weekends.

      So your figures are probably right bearing in mind the official figures for any car are best case plus a bit without any auxiliary stuff like heaters.

  3. May 20, 2017 5:08 pm

    Reblogged this on Climatism and commented:
    The taxpayer funded electric car green-dream is a climate obsessed virtue/signalling joke.

    But, living in Asia, I am a MASSIVE fan of converting to electric auto.

    BUT, this can only occur when the noble eco-cranks admit that the source energy can ONLY be derived from either Nuclear or Coal origins.

    Smog sucks. Ramp up Nukes and power clean electric autos by all means.

  4. markl permalink
    May 20, 2017 5:21 pm

    Another shoot, ready, aim from our environ-mentalists. Cost is just one factor and pales to the logistics of charging that many cars for the road every day. Since most charging will be done at night, along with all the street/house lighting, heating/cooling for homes, clothes washing/drying, entertainment devices and their charging, cooking, etc. the instantaneous demand on the grid will double if you do the math. The infrastructure and base load requirements will be increasing as the availability is decreasing with the ‘Climate Change’ edicts. Even if the infrastructure could handle it ….. which it cannot …. where will people without the luxury of a garage find a charge port? Typical green fantasy without concern for the reality of living standards.

  5. Tom Anderson permalink
    May 20, 2017 6:03 pm

    From what I have read, the Environmental Protection Agency says all motor vehicles’ range diminishes (lowering fuel economy) in the cold. A conventional IC vehicle’s gas mileage in city driving is reportedly around 12 percent lower at 20 degrees F than at 77 degrees F. Gas/electric hybrids seem to lose around 31 to 34 percent of range in those conditions. By contrast, very cold weather can cut a 100 pct electric car’s range by more than half.
    A battery makes a chemical reaction that gives off power as electrons. Cold slows the reaction down, both charging and discharging. Applying heat can improve a chemical reaction to boost energy from a battery. That is very tricky if there is only the battery to heat itself.
    In a controlled experiment testing three electric vehicles under different stop-and-go conditions, the American Automobile Association found they averaged a 105 miles on a charge at 75 degrees F but only 43 miles at 20 degrees F. That is more than half. Very hot weather cut the driving ranges, too, but more moderately, with average range dropping to 69 miles at 95 degrees F, down about a third.
    Funny you never see electrics in winter fun advertisements.

  6. Joe Public permalink
    May 20, 2017 6:11 pm

    “That would imply upwards of 100,000 charging points. At £22000 a time, the cost would be £2.2bn. Who’s going to pay?”

    No probs – the government could use the Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) revenue they all pay.

    Oh wait ……..

  7. May 20, 2017 6:24 pm

    The fundamentals of energy storage is what kills the practicality of electric cars. Storing petrol or diesel is so simple. You need tanks and pumps, that’s it. The amount of energy you can store is much greater. Handling time is exponentially shorter. Maintainance is fiendishly expensive and complex for hybrids and full-electric cars. Finally cost: btu equivalent costs from buying electricity for charging batteries and operating electric motors is more than the btu cost of gasoline and diesel. And the oil market is going down in price whilest electric power rises in cost annually. Without subsidies electric cars are completely impractical.

  8. martinbrumby permalink
    May 20, 2017 6:46 pm

    “Experts from the investment bank’s “evidence lab” made the prediction after tearing apart one of the current generation of electric cars to examine the economics of electric vehicles (EVs).

    They found that costs of producing EVs were far lower than previously thought but there is still great potential to make further savings, driving down the price of electric cars.”

    In other news, the same “experts” tore apart a Maserati and decided they could build one for £75.37, using matchsticks, rubber bands, tin foil and some super-glue.

    I’m sure the same 12 year old “experts” have a glittering career waiting for them in industry.

    Do they REALLY expect anyone to take this drivel seriously?

  9. annbanisher permalink
    May 20, 2017 6:53 pm

    The reality here in CA is that I too would hypothetically like an electric car.
    I got solar not because I am an ecowarrior, but because they were raising the rates so high.
    I hear idiots talk about how they can charge their car at home. I did the math and got solar to take off my tier 3 & 4 rates, which average $.40/kwh…. so if I charge a car at home, that is now the rate I will pay. An EV uses .34 kWh/mi, so at $.40/kWh, (with gas at $2.50/gal) that’s about 18.5 mi/gal equivalent. Oops. They aren’t telling you that, are they?
    Like all the government stuff, it’s a shell game. At least with an ICE, you know the MPG the car gets and you know how much gas costs, so you can easily figure out how much you pay.
    But with the EV, they count on you not being able to follow the pea, so you can never figure out what you’re real cost is.

  10. Jo Beaumont permalink
    May 20, 2017 6:55 pm

    I’m still waiting for when we have another cold snap with snow which blocks roads. How are electric cars stuck in this a) going to be able to keep the passengers’ warm, and b) get home when the snow clears and the battery has run out?

  11. May 20, 2017 7:44 pm

    EV’s have very poor second hand value.

    • Gamecock permalink
      May 20, 2017 8:24 pm

      Generally true, but Tesla’s do okay.

      • May 20, 2017 10:50 pm

        Tesla PR is very slimey
        ..and they have a special situation that they can’t deliver enough cars. So the second hand market for Tesla is a little like TICKET TOUTS… When Tesla starts proper mass production that ticket tout market should disappear .When enough new models are out, there should be very little demand for the old model Teslas.

    • markl permalink
      May 20, 2017 9:24 pm

      Yes, with battery doubts high on the list of concerns. “They” say drive trains should last longer with fewer moving parts and that remains to be seen. Suspensions/tires take a beating with the extra weight but brakes last longer due to regenerative braking. Battery health is the elephant in the room though and it’s measurable. I’m sure an after market battery industry will soon materialize but they’ll still be expensive and it’s not like you can put off replacing it very long once deteriorated to a questionable state. The only used Teslas that retain their resale value are the ones with relatively fresh batteries.

  12. Gamecock permalink
    May 20, 2017 8:33 pm

    ‘They found that costs of producing EVs were far lower than previously thought but there is still great potential to make further savings, driving down the price of electric cars.’

    It’s quite a leap from there to ‘Electric vehicles to cost the same as conventional cars by 2018.’

    ‘EVs matching the cost of conventionally fuelled cars sooner than expected will send a seismic shock throughout the sector, from manufacturers right down through their supply chains’

    I’m sure they are terrified.

    The article is clownish.

  13. May 21, 2017 12:46 am

    Who’s going to pay??? The general taxpayer, of course.

    Under climate catastrophism, the electric vehicle will be de rigeur socially. Access to rapid chargers would be like access to radio, TV and the internet. Or buses. A social priotity.

    The State will pay for the stations and claim a fee-for-service will make them revenue-neutral. As if, but that will be the justification. (Or a guaranteed ROR for a large private company, as the concept works so well for solar and wind power operations …. )

  14. richard verney permalink
    May 21, 2017 7:37 am

    there will be a lot more deaths when electric cars replace fossil fuel powered cars as the norm.

    • 1saveenergy permalink
      May 21, 2017 9:56 am

      Well the greens want to reduce the population…is this a subtle way of achieving that ?

      • gallopingcamel permalink
        May 22, 2017 3:13 am

        Globalists don’t need to be subtle as they have been in control for decades and they think you are living too well thanks to the fruits of the Industrial Revolution. Maurice Strong explains:

        ” Isn’t the only hope for the planet that the industrialized civilizations collapse? Isn’t it our responsibility to bring that about?”

        if our industrial civilization collapses there will be a new “Dark Age” of human misery.

  15. dennisambler permalink
    May 21, 2017 8:50 am

    How much do they charge for a charge? Is it 50p in a slot meter.

  16. May 21, 2017 10:17 am

    dennisambler: Commercial charging points require a return on the investment. Vehicles using it are sitting ducks; as if you decline the price you don’t get home. This could easily result in costing you up to £2.00 per mile. No. I have not done the figures- far too complicated. Just making the point.

  17. CheshireRed permalink
    May 21, 2017 12:02 pm

    I’ve got no problem with progress and if tech’ allows electric cars with zero emissions whatsoever, then who wouldn’t want that? The problem is rather than be adopted by buyers on merit this stuff is being forced by government diktat, and that never ends well. At present they’re just not credible. In fact you might say mass uptake of viable electric cars is miles off.

    • Dung permalink
      May 21, 2017 12:59 pm

      Emissions are not relevant unless you are part of the green blob.

      • gallopingcamel permalink
        May 22, 2017 2:57 am

        I beg to differ. Emissions of CO2 are relevant as they bestow immense benefits on all living things. We should all strive to raise the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere:

        Click to access benefits-of-co2.pdf

    • Gamecock permalink
      May 21, 2017 10:15 pm

      “tech’ allows electric cars with zero emissions whatsoever”

      Don’t be a chump. They run on coal, or whatever is producing the electricity.

  18. 2hmp permalink
    May 21, 2017 6:24 pm

    The real pressure will come when the cars are being driven in winter in the dark in pouring rain. They will all be looking for charging points.

  19. gallopingcamel permalink
    May 22, 2017 2:50 am

    “That would imply upwards of 100,000 charging points. At £22000 a time, the cost would be £2.2bn. Who’s going to pay?”

    The people who benefit will pay and they will do it with a smile!

    Let’s see how that works. Theoretically a rapid charger can complete 48 charges in a day but since people won’t be standing in line in the wee small hours let’s assume that the average rapid charger will complete 12 charges per day or 4,380 per year. Let’s assume that the average rapid charger will have a useful life of five years or 21,900 charges.

    Thus the £22000 cost of the rapid charger can be recovered by charging each customer one pound for charger amortization in addition to what the electricity and operating costs are. My guess is that the average customer would happily pay at least five pounds per charge to avoid spending four hours drinking coffee while a “fast” charger does the job.

    Charging five pounds per charge to amortize a cost of one pound per charge would provide a healthy “Return on Investment” which means that there would be no reason for the gumment to get involved.

    You don’t need gumment investments in businesses that will make a profit.

    • markl permalink
      May 22, 2017 2:54 am

      “Fast” chargers reduce the life cycle/health of the battery and are preferable for emergencies and limited use.

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