Cheerful woman in a car

8 ways EVs make driving better

There are many benefits to driving an electric vehicle (EV) in comparison to a petrol or diesel car. EVs are known for being better for the environment, as well as generally cheaper to run and maintain. If someone has not had an opportunity to drive an EV yet, then it may be hard to know how this driving experience feels different to a traditional petrol or diesel car. Here are eight interesting ways EVs offer a better driving experience.


What makes the driving experience better in an EV?

1. More Power

2. EVs are automatic

3. More responsive steering

4. Smoother braking

5. Better suspension

6. Charge your car at home

7. Less maintenance

8. A quieter ride

1. More power

It’s well known that EVs are more powerful than traditional petrol or diesel cars, especially from a standing start. A recent study found that the average 0-60mph time in many popular EV models is just 4.4 seconds. This is faster than 63% of modern-day petrol and diesel performance cars. But EVs also deliver their power more smoothly.

A petrol or diesel engine has around 200 parts that have to work together to create the power needed to turn the wheels. This is known as ‘torque’. When you push your foot down on the accelerator of a petrol or diesel car, the engine takes a moment to engage all those parts and create the power you need.

EV motors only have around 20 parts and can create power almost instantly. When you push down on the accelerator of an EV, the power happens straight away, making the ride noticeably smoother and more responsive. You can feel the smoothness of the journey as there is no need to change gears. Almost all EVs are automatic, making driving easier and more enjoyable.

2. EVs are automatic

man-driving-an-EV

Some petrol or diesel cars have a gearbox with different gears that you must switch between as you speed up or slow down. Even if you change gears smoothly, you can still feel it, even if it’s just for a moment.

But electric cars are different. They only have one gear, so you do not need to think about changing gears. Instead of using a clutch, EV drivers just use the brake and accelerator pedals. And to go forward, backwards, or park, they just press a button on the touchscreen. Touchscreens are a common feature in many EVs. Because of the ease of not having to change gears, driving an electric car is usually much smoother and simpler than driving a petrol or diesel car.

Find out more about touchscreen technology available in vehicles. 

3. More responsive steering

Electric Power Steering (EPS) makes it easier to steer and control your car when you turn the wheel. This can be found in most cars today, but an EV can adapt to a specific situation. When driving at lower speeds or parking, the steering wheel becomes easier to turn, allowing smaller, more precise movements. At increased speeds, including when driving on motorways, the wheel has more resistance, making the car more stable on the road. 

More advanced versions of EPS allow cars to offer emergency steering assist, which can scan the road for obstacles and helps the driver steer safely.

Some car makers are actively pushing the boundaries of what steering looks like and how it performs. The next developments in steering will offer even more precise control and boost the driving experience further.

4. Smoother braking

regenerative-braking-in-an-EV

Electric vehicles use regenerative braking. This is when  the electric motor slows the car down and turns the ennergy into electricity to store in the battery for later.  This makes EVs work better and can also help tyres and brakes last longer as they do not have to slow the car down as much as petrol or diesel cars.

While regenerative braking was developed to improve an EV’s efficiency, it has an added bonus. When EV drivers push the brake pedal, they are likely to feel less resistance than they would in a petrol or diesel car. This can take a little getting used to initially, but it makes the driving experience feel a lot smoother.

5. Better suspension

A car’s suspension takes in the bumps and shocks of the road. The better the suspension, the less you notice when the road is uneven or has potholes. Where many petrol and diesel cars have ‘fixed’ or ‘free’ suspension systems, EVs often use the more advanced ‘active’ suspension. This means the suspension automatically changes its settings to match the conditions, including changing the height of the vehicle where needed.

Every EV does not have active suspension, but it is becoming a more common feature in newer models. As EV designs keep improving with new technology, we can expect the suspension to get much better in the next few years. This will make the driving experience even more comfortable.

6. Charge your car at home

Ev-chargepoint-at-home

If you can get a home chargepoint, this means you can charge your EV overnight, freeing up your day for other things. This makes for a much more relaxing experience when refilling your car, as you will not need to plan extra time to go to the petrol station and potentially wait in line.

Charging your EV may take longer than refilling a petrol or diesel car, but there are many ways to plan for a longer journey in your EV when you need to charge on route. 

Did you know?

When you lease your first EV through the Motability Scheme, they will arrange and cover the cost of a home chargepoint and a standard installation at no extra cost. This is only applicable if you have off-street parking next to your home, like a driveway or garage. Find out more about getting a home chargepoint with the Motability Scheme.

7. Less maintenance

Because electric vehicles have far fewer parts than petrol and diesel cars, they generally require less maintenance. With a petrol or diesel engine having so many parts, if even one tiny part fails or breaks, the car may not run correctly or safely. 

Did you know?

Your worry-free lease package with the Motability Scheme will cover regular servicing and maintenance for your electric car. Your package also includes breakdown cover with Motability Scheme partner, the RAC. The easiest way to report your breakdown is through the myRAC app.

8. A quieter ride

The main sound you’ll hear when driving a petrol or diesel car is the engine. It’s a sound we’re all used to by now. But one of the main differences you’ll notice when driving an EV is there is no engine sound. When you drive an EV, the motor is practically silent and the most you will hear is a gentle ‘whoosh’ sound. Studies have found that at speeds, the sound of a petrol or diesel car can be the same as a busy classroom. When trying the same speed with an EV, this sounds like the low hum of a dishwasher.

People who have never driven an EV before often ask how it feels in comparison to driving a traditional car. The experience is much quieter and peaceful. There is still noise, but it’s at a far lower level.

Motoring journalist, Nick Harper, believes that EVs offer a smoother ride. He says:

“The car accelerates faster, but what’s even more noticeable is how smoothly it moves. The hesitations you experience when changing gears on a petrol or diesel car are replaced with smooth, seamless power. The bumps and jolts you feel in traditional cars are replaced by a much more comfortable glide. And with no gears to move through and the whole driving experience simplified, you reach your destination feeling much more relaxed.”

How can I find an electric car on the Motability Scheme?

You can choose to pick from fully electric cars by ticking the ‘Electric’ box under ‘Fuel Type’ in the Car Search tool.

You can tailor the choice of cars available on the Scheme to your specific needs. The ‘advanced search’ function lets you narrow down choices to your exact requirements, including Advance Payment, brand, individual model, body style, fuel type, fuel consumption, number of seats, and even whether it’s eligible for younger drivers.

Related articles

Vehicle-to-Grid EV charging: what is it and how does it work?

What is smart charging for electric vehicles (EVs)?

Long-range EVs available on the Motability Scheme

From the Motability Scheme


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