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EVs can work for high mileage, Arval says

Date: 16 January 2019   |   Author: Sean Keywood

A belief that pure electric vehicles (EVs) are only suitable for drivers covering a low annual mileage needs to be overturned, according to leasing company Arval.

The firm says that when it comes to considering how and where to deploy EVs, the daily driving profile of each driver is far more important than their total mileage.

Arval's head of consulting Shaun Sadlier said it was important to challenge the perception that high mileage wouldn't work with the vehicles. 

He said: "This is a myth that we hear regularly - that if you cover more than a few thousand miles a year, EVs should be taken off the table as a choice. 

"This argument is really an extension of range anxiety, the idea that because an EV has a limited range and takes time to recharge, that it cannot cover a longer distance annually." 

Sadlier said managers looking at the real world suitability of EVs should consider the range of a particular model and each driver's actual needs on a day-by-day basis. 

He said: "If you look at a driver who covers 25,000 miles a year, towards the upper end of the typical fleet spectrum, then the suitability of an EV rests entirely on their daily mileage. 

"If that driver covers 246 miles, twice a week, for 46 weeks of the year, then an EV is probably not for them. They are exceeding or getting close to the maximum range of even the best EVs that are now available on the market. 

"However, if they drive 110 miles, five days a week, for 46 weeks of the year and this mileage pattern is very predictable, then an EV could absolutely be suitable because it is well within the range for most models and the car can be recharged overnight."

Sadlier added that due to the financial model of EVs, it could be argued they become more cost effective the more miles they cover. 

He said: "Most EVs have a relatively high monthly rental but a low per mile operating cost when compared to a comparative ICE model. So the more miles you cover, the more attractive they become from a whole life cost point of view.

"Once this is pointed out to fleets, you can see a kind of light bulb moment occurring. 

"They realise that EVs are not just for short trips around cities, for example. It is, from our point of view, a myth that very much needs to be challenged in order to increase EV adoption."