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Thinking about buying an electric car? Here's what Dennis thinks.

One of our clients, Dennis Holness, has been thinking of buying an electric car for a while. Here he tells us of his journey in researching and choosing the right brand and model for him. If you're wondering whether to go for an electric car, you might find his experience useful.

Just before the start of the pandemic, I was thinking about replacing my diesel Ford Focus with a newer model, but diesel cars were becoming scarce and the dealer couldn't immediately source one. By the time he found one, the pandemic had started and everything was very uncertain so I put off the idea.

A year later the picture had changed: the government (and my wife) was encouraging us to move away from diesel. Also, Birmingham had introduced a clean air zone, with a charge for entering, which was very relevant for us as half our children and grandchildren live there.

I could buy a hybrid, but why carry around an extra engine or large battery which then reduces the fuel consumption due to the extra weight? So I took the radical move of looking at fully electric cars; a big change for me as I have always driven a manual car with a key, a handbrake, an instrument panel, and the need for an annual service.

None of the electric cars have these features and I don't count myself as well up on computer technology - I only bought my first

smartphone this year.

After a little research I narrowed my selection down to the cars as follows;

  • Tesla Model 3 long range

  • VW ID-4 long-range 1st edition

  • VW ID-3 Tour

  • Ford Mustang Mach-E

  • Volvo Polestar

The Volvo dropped out because all the reviews said it wasn't as good as the Tesla, the Ford was dismissed when the dealer said there were none available for a year, and so I test drove the other three.

The ID-4, an SUV-type car was preferred to the ID-3 saloon so it became a head-to-head between the Tesla and ID-4. This was the difficult bit as they are quite different cars each having some very good attributes and some negatives as follows:

Being an engineer, I resorted to a mathematical scoring system and the result came out very close 6.75 v 6.65 in favour of Tesla. I suspect that in another two years' time the ID-4 would win as the product matures and the national charging networks improve.

Our other car is an old VW Sharan, very useful for carrying both bicycles and students to and from university so an ID-4 might replace it in a few year's time.

The Tesla is due to arrive early in June so I have had the charging point installed. I might give you an update in a few month's time.

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