FAQs

If you are considering an electric vehicle for the first time, we at Benchmark understand that you will have a lot of questions that you will need answering. As your experts in all things EV, we are here to help you with anything you need to know. 


  • Potential cost savings: when the running costs and tax efficiencies of an EV are compared with Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) cars, the savings in running an EV can be considerable. These depend on the type of vehicle chosen, and the number of miles driven; more mileage in an EV delivers a greater saving.
  • Increased interior space: due to the removal of traditional engine vehicle components such as the transmission tunnel and the engine, EVs can offer a more spacious interior driving experience.
  • Charging at home: charging your vehicle at home enables you to wake up with a full charge every morning without ever having to move from the comfort of your own home
  • Instant torque and quiet interior: dual motors power the vehicle, providing instant torque and removing the need to change gears, providing a more serene and tranquil driving environment.
  • Re-generative braking: by harvesting the energy from braking this can be turned into supplementary range to help extend your journey distance.
  • The range of an electric vehicle (the distance that can be travelled before having to recharge the battery) has traditionally been a concern, giving rise to the term ‘range anxiety’. However, the latest developments in battery technologies mean that many of the EVs available in the UK are now a realistic proposition for most people. Many owners find that they only need to charge their EV once a week.
  • For long distance journeys, a stop may be necessary to charge the battery. This may require some advanced planning, but with over 5,000 public charging locations, and over 7,500 individual charging units (and growing rapidly) finding a convenient public charge continues to become easier. Many supermarkets, restaurant chains and retail outlets are installing EV charging points to allow their customers to charge for free as they shop/eat.
  • Range can be affected by a number of factors, including external temperature, operating the heating or cooling systems, driving up (or down) hills and the speed at which you are driving.
  • Just like with any other electrical appliance, it really is as simple as plugging your car in to a charging point. As well as your home charging point, you can charge up at public charging stations. You can use www.zap-map.com to locate charging points across the UK, while some workplaces also have them. The connector types vary a little, so Zap Map enables you to filter on the connector type to find charge points compatible with your EV.
  • The price of electricity fluctuates according to market influences. To calculate the cost for a full charge, simply multiply the rate you are charged per kWh by the battery capacity of your vehicle. The cheapest place to charge your car is at home.
  • Electric cars generate maximum torque from standstill, delivering impressive acceleration.
  • The battery’s location, between the two axles, also provides a lower centre of gravity and an even weight distribution for improved handling. And, without the need to package a big engine in the front, the wheels can be positioned nearer to the outermost corners of the vehicle, enhancing stability and steering feel.
  • All EVs are designed and engineered to meet the most stringent global safety standards.
  • Compared to a vehicle with an internal combustion engine, electric vehicles require less maintenance as they have fewer moving parts. In other words, there is less that can wear out.
  • You don’t escape the MOT test by choosing an EV. Like all cars, EVs have to pass an annual road-worthiness inspection once they are three years old. The main difference is that there is no emissions test, so that’s one less area to potentially fail on.
  • EVs can be a little more expensive to insure than comparatively sized traditional vehicles. The key reason for this is that they can be more expensive to repair, especially if the battery is damaged. There are a number of other factors that affect the insurance rating, as with other vehicles (your age, mileage, location etc) so you should check with your insurer that they can/will insure EVs.
  • The upfront price of new electric vehicles can be higher than a comparable petrol or diesel car. To help overcome this, the government introduced a plug-in grant to help buyers offset some of the cost of a new EV.
  • This grant is available on a range of eligible EVs including cars, vans, motorcycles, mopeds, taxis and even large trucks. To qualify for the plug in vehicle grant the EV you buy must; cost less than £50,000, have emissions of less than 50g/km, and a zero emissions range of at least 70 miles.
  • The maximum grant available for new electric cars is £3,000 while the maximum for a new electric van is £8,000, taxis can get up to £7,500 and motorbikes up to £1,500.
  • With these grants, and given the low running costs of EVs, the total cost of ownership of a new EV can fall broadly in-line with an equivalent petrol or diesel model.
  • If you lease your vehicles, leasing companies such as Benchmark will reflect the value of the grant in the rental figure, so there is nothing you need to do to claim the grant.
  • If you purchase or lease an EV, have registration documents and off-road parking, then you will qualify for a homecharge grant.
  • The homecharge grant is currently worth £350. The grant can only be claimed whilst the scheme exists.
  • If you are installing charge points in a work as benefit for staff or visitors to your business, then you will qualify for a workplace charge scheme grant.
  • The workplace charge scheme grant is currently worth £350 per charge point. A business can benefit on the installation of up to 40 charge points. Therefore, the grant has a maximum value of £14,000. The charge points could be installed in a phased way, but the grant can only be claimed whilst the scheme exists.
  • If you install a charge point for commercial benefit, you will not be able to claim any government grant.