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Why Go Electric? If you're thinking about making a change on your driveway for the first time in about 10 years, you now have more options than you would've had last time you were car shopping.

Hybrid and Electric Car Charging & Range Explained

If you’re interested in hybrid or electric vehicles, you may be wondering – how long does it take to charge electric cars? This is a perfectly valid question, of course, as you need to know the practicalities of the vehicle you’re buying, including charging times and how long a vehicle can travel without needing an energy top-up.

At Swansway Group, we’re here to answer your questions, so here are some important details to help with your buying journey.

Hybrids you don’t need to plug in

Firstly, it’s important to realise that many regular hybrids don’t need to be plugged in at all – such as the all-new Honda CR-V. So, if you don’t want to fuss around with power cables or travel long distances and are worried about running out of charge, this could be the right option for you.

How can I recharge a plug-in or electric vehicle?

If you do opt for an EV or a plug-in hybrid that you want to run on pure electric power, then your vehicle will need to be charged. You can do this in two ways – either from home, or at one of the many dedicated charging stations dotted around the UK. If you choose the former, your car can be plugged into a standard UK three-pin socket or you can have a fast charging station installed which can save you a lot of time.

How long will it take to charge my electric car?

How long it takes for your EV to be charged will depend largely on the size of your battery and which kind of charging station you decide to use. The charger’s speed will depend on how many kilowatts (kW) it can provide.

  • At home: Slow charging with a 3kW rate can take between 8-14 hours. Fast charging on the other hand with a rate of between 7-22kW can take 3-4 hours to fully replenish the battery.
  • Charging station: Rapid charging with a rate of 43-50kW can give your vehicle up to 80% charge in as little as 30 minutes. Some cars such as the Nissan LEAF are not compatible with rapid charging as they must be charged at a maximum of 3.7kW. There are also different plug connectors: Type 1 and Type 2 and the charging point must match the connector.

What is the range of a fully charged EV?

Most electric vehicles can travel between 100 and 200+ miles before they need to be recharged. This can vary from model-to-model, however, so it’s important to eye up all the specifications before making a purchase.

How can you get the longest range out of your EV battery?

  • Reduce rolling resistance – make sure your EV is fitted with low rolling resistance tyres and keep tyre pressure spot on.
  • Decelerate don’t brake – in an EV deceleration recoups energy so using your brakes will waste energy.
  • Drive smoothly – smooth acceleration and measured deceleration use less energy.
  • Reduce air resistance – the faster you drive the higher the air resistance; keep to 50-55mph.
  • Limit your climate control usage – Heating or cooling your EV can be expensive in terms of energy usage, keep it a minimum to maximise your battery’s range.
  • Stay local – most journeys will be well within your EV battery range, so you can just sit back and enjoy the ride!

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Other Electric Services Got a question or need help with an electric vehicle? If you're looking for your next vehicle, our teams across the country will be happy to assist to help meet and exceed your requirements. Click on the link below to get in contact with your local retailer.