Month: July 2019

Breakdown Cover and Electric Vehicles

Breakdown Cover and Electric Vehicles

As people gain increased awareness of how internal combustion motors add to air pollution, and as electric vehicles become more reliable, you might wonder if electric vehicles can break down and if there is breakdown cover for them. The answers are yes they can and yes there is. With that said, let’s look at what can go wrong and how likely it is that a breakdown agent can help you.

Flat Battery

Since electric cars run on battery power, a flat battery will certainly leave you sitting by the side of the road. Regenerative braking can help top up the battery on an electric car, but that will only go so far. Both AA and RAC say that they will tow owners of electric vehicles to the nearest charging point or to their destination, whichever is closer.

Fewer Parts That Can Be Repaired

Maintenance on an electric vehicle is more like working on a laptop computer or even a refrigerator than repairing a car with an internal combustion motor. This isn’t necessarily bad news. With fewer moving parts, there is a lot less to go wrong. You can still get a tire puncture, however, which is one of the most common roadside repairs for standard vehicles.

Dealer Centered Assistance Plans

The Nissan Leaf, one of the most affordable electric cars, has a very nice roadside assistance package for owners. Nissan Care includes roadside repair by a knowledgeable technician for those parts that can be repaired. If repairs are not possible at the location, your car will be towed to your home repair location or to the nearest dealership. They also offer continuation of the trip or return home if your vehicle cannot be repaired the same day.

Renault, being aware that one of the biggest drawbacks to owning an electric vehicle is “battery memory” which causes the capacity of the battery to diminish over time. Instead of selling the battery for your vehicle, they lease it to you. Let’s say that again. You buy the vehicle but lease the battery. Renault guarantees the battery to the point that it maintains at least 75% capacity.

Charging Stations, Charging Times, and Parking

One of the biggest differences between driving an electric vehicle and an internal combustion vehicle is fueling up. It takes longer to charge a vehicle, even if you are making use of a fast charger. That means planning your trip carefully. The other thing about charging your vehicle is that it is most easily done if you have an assigned parking place or garage so that you can plug your vehicle in and let it charge overnight.

You won’t go as far (yet)  on a single charge as you can on a tank of petrol. The limit on a battery charge for an electric vehicle is about 100 miles.

Advantages of Electric

Lack of pollution is the first and most obvious advantage of driving an electric car. But there are others. Acceleration is smooth and fast. You will never have a quieter ride. In fact, electric cars are so quiet that there is a discussion of creating noise so that pedestrians and animals can be more quickly made aware of an approaching vehicle.

Electric Vehicles Are Not New

Electric vehicles are not a new concept. In fact, there was an electric vehicle before the internal combustion vehicle. But modern batteries that weigh less and are more easily charged contribute to the practicality of driving an electric car.

With several cities preparing to ban internal combustion vehicles from certain areas, electric vehicles become a more practical consideration than ever before.

It is likely that as more electric cars are in use, more breakdown cover companies will hire mechanics trained in repairing them and a broader array of services will be offered.

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