Woman plugging her electric vehicle into a public charging station on city street.

Are you considering an EV?

29 June 2020

As we face a changing climate, an electric vehicle (EV) seems like a smart option to consider as your daily driver. The latest models on the market offer a higher range, advanced features, and more stylish designs than ever before. Nissan’s LEAF is alive and well in New Zealand, as well as Kia’s Niro EV, and Volkswagen’s e-Golf, providing an attractive option for EV aficionados and curious petrol converts alike.

Before you make the switch to a more eco-friendly vehicle,  consider our list of essential questions to determine if your lifestyle is EV ready.

What interests you about EVs?

EVs are great vehicles for many types of lifestyles, but it’s important to be realistic about your expectations. If you often enjoy long road trips, don’t have a place to charge your EV at home, or need towing capacity, an EV is likely not for you at this stage. If you’re a city dweller that runs errands and plans quick weekend excursions, then read on!

Silver Nissan LEAF electric vehicle plugged in to wall.

How much do you drive per day?

It’s important to consider the range of your EV and how long your commute is each day. The LEAF has an average WLTP range of 270km, so you could theoretically drive around 54km a day for the workweek without needing to recharge until the weekend. The Volkswagen e-Golf has a maximum range of 220km with two driving modes, ECO+ and ECO – perfect for the varied driving in Canterbury. Finally, the Kia Niro has two options in their EV model – 289km and 455km of range – giving you even more flexibility if you’re looking for a smart road trip option.

As with all-electric vehicles, the range varies with what type of driving you do (open roads, stop/start traffic), how aggressively you drive, and your use of extras like heat and cooling. After considering the number of kilometres you travel on an average day, consider the number of times you’d like to charge a week. If you don’t mind charging every night, long commutes are a breeze.

Black Volkswagen e-Golf being charged up,

Have you owned an EV previously?

This question is asked for two reasons – one, because seasoned EV owners will need less training and consideration when looking at EV options. The second reason is that the charging cables for older models with multiple generations like the LEAF have been updated from the previous model and are not compatible with the new model. Cables will need to be updated for some options. 

Are you aware of the charging infrastructure available?

There are a few apps and sites that can help eliminate the fear of range anxiety and help you plan your trip. NZTA has a comprehensive site of charging stations and AA has created a journey planner calculator in conjunction with NZTA to make road trip planning easier than before. If you’re looking for an app, the Drive Electric app is a great option.

Grey Kia Niro EV Plugged In

Are you able to plan ahead?

Do some research on the charging stations near your home, work, and road trip destinations. If you have long road trips planned, plan out your route to avoid range anxiety. Owning an EV means being prepared, planning ahead, and having backup plans for if things go wrong. Remember, charging your EV isn’t as straight forward as filling up a petrol car. You’ll have to make sure the charging station is available, accessible, and if it has cables available. Even with quick charges, you’ll need to factor in downtime when your vehicle is charging, so plan out what you’ll do during this time. Many charge stations are near supermarkets, shopping centres, and even walks, so plan to spend your time wisely and avoid frustration.

Do you have solar panels?

Not essential, but having solar panels at home will mean that the cost of charging your EV is that much cheaper, and you won’t need to worry about avoiding charging during peak times. However, if you don’t have solar panels an average charge from 0-100% is around $10, so it won’t break the bank.

Our EV Range

Kia Niro

Choose between 289km or 455km of range with the Kia Niro EV. A stylish crossover with 17″ alloys and LED running lights, you’ll be turning heads with the best of them. The Niro EV comes with all the modern luxuries owning a Kia affords, such as a 7″ LCD touchscreen, lane keep assist system, smart cruise control, and Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The Niro includes regenerative braking, making it an effortless exercise to save kilometres and drive in the most eco-friendly way.

Volkswagen e-Golf electric vehicle driving down a city street,

Volkswagen e-Golf

From $69,490+ORC MRP

Enjoy 220km of range in this comfortable, luxurious electric vehicle. With a fast charge time of 45 minutes and a 35.8kWh lithium-ion Type 2 battery, you’ll find the switch to electric effortless. This e-Golf comes with all the amenities you’d expect from Volkswagen, such as front, side, and lane assist, pedestrian monitoring, adaptive cruise control, keyless entry, and 12.3″ active info display.

Nissan LEAF

Voted Most Reliable Car and Most Satisfying Car to Own by Consumer NZ, this EV has been a front-runner in the EV market for years. With a sleek design and black leather-accented seat trim, it’s easy to see why.

The LEAF comes complete with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, displayed through an impressive 8-inch touchscreen display. The e-Pedal allows for regenerative driving, putting any range anxiety at ease. With a whole 270km of range, the real question is, where is your first adventure to?

Think you’re ready to make the switch? Get in touch to talk with one of our team members and book a test drive.

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