Greener Travel

Types of electric car

An electric vehicle (EV) is one powered – in full or in part – by a battery that plugs directly into mains electricity. 

There are a few key types of electric and hybrid vehicles that you could consider. 

Pure EV

Powered solely by a battery charged from mains electricity. Typically has a range of around 100 miles. Can be driven by holders of automatic licences, since it has no gearbox.

PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle)

Plug-in battery plus internal combustion engine (ICE). Once its pure-electric range of 10 miles or more is used, the PHEV reverts to hybrid power. Ideal for longer journeys.

E-REV (Extended Range Electric Vehicle)

Like a Pure-EV but with a more limited range – approx. 40 miles on the electric battery. However an on-board ICE-powered generator extends the range to around 300 miles.

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Charging times

While charging a Pure-EV from flat to full can take around eight hours using a domestic socket, we recommend installing a dedicated home charge point, which can charge a Pure-EV in just half that time. The UK Government’s Office for Low Emissions Vehicles (OLEV) is currently offering EV drivers £500 towards installation.

Living with an Electric Vehicle

Watch the Energy Saving Trust video featuring Robert Llewellyn of Scrapheap Challenge.