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UK’s electric car industry could ‘grind to a halt’ due to shortage of mechanics | UK | News UK News

An expert has said the UK’s electric car industry could grind due to a shocking issue. According to the founder of online lease comparison site LeaseLoco John Wilmot, the UK’s “electric car revolution” could “grind to a halt” because of a shortage of mechanics.

While there are thousands of automotive professionals trained to repair petrol, diesel, and hybrid cars, there are fewer who can repair electric cars.

Electric cars, though less mechanically complex than combustion cars, are more complex in other areas, making them difficult to work on in some cases.

Mr Wilmot said the time it takes to fix an electric car could have a significant impact on people who buy them.

Mr Wilmot explained: “Up until last year, UK drivers had been warned that a ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles would come into effect from 2030, making an EV a more compelling choice for those looking for their next car.

“Following the Government’s decision to extend the deadline to 2035, we’re likely to continue to see steady sales of combustion engines for the next 10 years alongside the take up of EVs for a while longer.

“This could result in mechanics being less likely to upskill in electric vehicle maintenance in the short term, instead continuing to prioritise the millions of combustion engine vehicles still on British roads and on sale until the 2035 ban comes into force.

“A widespread shortage of EV mechanics could also impact repair costs and waiting times. Drivers needing routine repairs could be in for a long wait, which could become the norm if there’s a lack of qualified technicians to repair electric vehicles.”

Mr Wilmot warned that the limited number of places for people to repair their electric car “could also mean higher prices for consumers, as garages ramp up their repair costs to keep up with demand as well as offset any costs incurred from training their mechanics”.

Although there are problems with getting an electric car repaired, Mr Wilmot said there were some advantages to going electric.

He explained: “The good news is that because there are fewer moving parts in an EV powertrain compared with its combustion engine counterparts, they’re less likely to break down and could actually be cheaper to maintain over the course of the vehicle’s lifespan.

“It’s important that your EV is regularly serviced and maintained in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommended service intervals as this will help prolong the life of your vehicle, keep software up to date and prevent any potential mechanical issues.”

Furthermore, he said that some manufacturers have “service plans specifically for electric vehicles and motorists who lease their EV can opt for maintenance packages to be included in their contract, which does help keep overall maintenance costs down in the long run”.

For current owners trying to get their electric car repaired, he advised: “If you’re finding it hard to find an independent mechanic to service or repair your EV, speak to your local manufacturer retailer who will almost certainly have the professionals in-house who are trained to service electric vehicles, although this option can be more costly for motorists.”

Alongside the cost of repairs, the cost of insurance is also rising for electric car drivers. Car insurance expert at Uswitch Leoni Moninska said buyers should be aware of the insurance costs before they buy.

She said: “While the price of electric vehicles falls, it’s important to not only think about the cheapest models to buy but also the cost of insuring your EV. Where people often presume that EVs are more expensive to insure, with prices expected to continue to drop, it is worth searching for updated quotes to see what deals are on offer.”

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This notice was published: 2024-01-13 05:00:00

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