We've been insuring electric vehicles for many years
(Vocus) March 16, 2009
Electric vehicles (EVs) could - finally - be set for takeoff as practical, fast cars. In fact, the latest models, such as the Norfolk-built Tesla Roadster, can outperform most petrol models, with phenomenal dragster-style acceleration. This year's Detroit motor show suggests that they might just - finally - be arriving in enough numbers to be an affordable option for serious drivers, and create a whole new market.
Not just affordable, but cool too. The latest EVs also promise to usher in a new generation of greener motoring, and the days of 'liquid-drive' finally look numbered.
However, keen buyers of the new breed of performance electric cars may find that no matter how cool they are, one hot shock awaits them - insurance.
Specialist broker Adrian Flux Insurance Services says that these 'early adopters' might find it hard to get cheap insurance cover for a variety of reasons. Not least, the likelihood that many insurance companies are wary of new types of vehicle until there are enough of them on the road to give statistics. Electric vehicles are often classed alongside kit cars or one-offs, something that would make many insurers give higher premiums.
So Adrian Flux is setting up an electric car division in advance to ensure that when electric vehicles hit the mass market in the UK, buyers will have at least one option for cheaper insurance that understands the needs of the EV driver.
"We've been insuring electric vehicles for many years," says Gerry Bucke, commercial director at Adrian Flux. "However, most of them to date have been low-performance models, such as milk floats or the cute mini-cars like the G-Whiz. They are still mostly a niche market for city commuting and shopping, and aren't seen as risky.
"But the new generation are a different matter. They are quieter than petrol cars and with very fast acceleration - in the case of the Tesla, 0-60 in under four seconds, without the usual roar of a performance car.
"This is going to change how people behave. Not just the EV drivers themselves, but other drivers, and pedestrians too."
Gerry Bucke says that that a 2009 Tesla Roadster, owned and driven by a 48 year old man in the Norfolk NR20 area with 5 years' no-claims, should cost about £750 to insure comprehensively. A roughly equivalent petrol-driven performance car, the Porsche 911 Turbo, would cost perhaps slightly more - around £800 - for a similar level of cover.
"Until insurance companies get the statistics, they might be tempted to load premiums just to be on the safe side. We want to make sure that customers aren't penalised for going green and we'll be working hard to help the insurance companies get it right," says Gerry Bucke.
Adrian Flux aims to offer cheaper car insurance and has a huge range of policies for every type of motoring enthusiast. For details contact the Adrian Flux quote line on 0800 505 3000, email the company at quotes9at)adrianflux.co.uk or see the Flux website homepage on http://www.adrianflux.co.uk/.
PRESS ENQUIRIES: Electric car insurance– Mar-09
Toni Turner or Alison Haynes at The Publicity Works
Tel: 01263 761000
Gerry Bucke of Adrian Flux Insurance Services: 0800 505 3000