How Much Does It Cost to Buy an Electric Van: A Price Guide for 2024 - Vanzone
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How Much Does It Cost to Buy an Electric Van: A Price Guide for 2024

Ford Transit

Electric vans represent a burgeoning segment in the commercial vehicle market, offering businesses an opportunity to embrace cleaner technology and potentially reduce operating costs over time. The initial purchase price of an electric van is influenced by various factors, including size, make, model, and the level of technology integrated into the vehicle. Typically, electric vans carry a higher price tag upfront compared to their diesel counterparts, reflecting the advanced battery technology and the ongoing development costs associated with electric vehicles.

Understanding the total cost of ownership is crucial for potential buyers, as electric vans often result in lower running costs. These savings stem from reduced fuel expenses, tax incentives, such as exemption from the vehicle excise duty (VED), and lower maintenance requirements due to having fewer moving parts than traditional engines. Additionally, some regions offer plug-in van grants to offset the initial purchase price, further enhancing the economic appeal of electric vans.

Although the variety of electric vans on the market is increasing, prospective buyers must consider their specific needs against the available models. The range on a single charge and charging infrastructure suitability are important considerations, as well as evaluating any lifestyle or business operation changes that may arise from transitioning to an electric van. The growing selection of electric vans on the market means that finding one to suit most needs is becoming increasingly straightforward.

EV prices in 2024

Electric VanLease (exc vat)Buy (exc vat)
Toyota Proace City Electric£389£429
Vauxhall Vivaro-e£429£449
Volkswagen ID Buzz£359£699
Citroen e Berlingo£349£399
Citroen e-Dispatch£379£399
Citroen e-Relay£459£479
Ford E-Transit£569£599
Ford E-Transit Custom 2023£529£549

Electric Van Market Overview

The electric van segment is expanding, providing business owners and fleet operators with a variety of options to consider. Manufacturers are responding to growing demand with a range of electric vans that compete in terms of rangecapacityperformance, and price.

As they assess the market, potential buyers observe that the upfront cost for electric vans is generally higher than for their diesel counterparts. However, they typically benefit from lower running costs due to savings on fuel and maintenance. For example, statistics show that the cost to fully charge an electric van with a 45 kWh battery is around £16, depending on several factors.

The availability of incentives can further influence the purchase decision. Electric vans are exempt from Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) and, in some locations like central London, they are also exempt from the Congestion Charge. These financial benefits make electric vans an increasingly attractive proposition.

Buyers have a range of models to choose from, including small vans like the award-winning Renault Kangoo E-Tech and larger options that cater to higher payload requirements. It is reported that by 2023, up to 70% of van drivers considered an electric van to be suitable for their operations, signalling a significant shift in the market’s direction.

The electric van sector is expected to keep growing as manufacturers aim to meet stringent emission regulations and as businesses look to reduce their carbon footprint. Buyers are encouraged to research and compare different models to find an electric van that meets their specific business needs.

Cost Factors for Electric Vans

When considering the transition to an electric van, potential buyers should be aware of the various cost factors involved including the initial purchase price, government incentives, insurance costs, and the operating expenses.

Purchase Price

The purchase price of an electric van varies significantly based on the make, model, and size required. For instance, choosing between a small, medium, or large van impacts the cost greatly. It is also influenced by the level of technology and the range the van offers. For a comprehensive understanding, see our range of vans.

Government Incentives

The UK government offers various incentives to encourage the purchase of electric vehicles (EVs). These can include grants and tax reductions, which effectively lower the overall cost of acquisition for the buyer. However, it’s crucial to stay updated as these incentives can change and may expire at certain dates.

Insurance Costs

Insurance costs for electric vans can differ from their petrol or diesel counterparts. While historically, insurance might have been more expensive for EVs due to their higher purchase prices and specialised repair needs, the market is adapting, and insurance premiums are becoming more competitive as the EV market matures.

Operating Expenses

Electric vans provide notable savings in operating expenses compared to traditional vans. They generally incur lower costs per mile due to cheaper electricity rates versus fuel prices. A Go Ultra Low study found that over a three-year period and 60,000 miles, electric vehicles can cost 23% less in terms of servicing and maintenance. Additionally, road tax for electric vans is currently non-existent, but it’s slated to change in 2025.

Vauxhall Vivaro

Comparison of Electric Van Models

When considering the purchase of an electric van, buyers should examine the range, payload capacity, and price across different size categories. These factors play a crucial role in determining the most appropriate electric van for specific uses.

Small Electric Vans

Small electric vans are ideal for urban use, offering easier manoeuvrability and lower costs. The Toyota Proace City Electric stands out in this segment with its impressive 10-year warranty and strong payload ratings. It delivers a solid balance between performance and utility for city logistics.

Medium Electric Vans

In the medium van sector, Renault Trucks’ E-Tech Master provides a versatile urban solution. These vans cater to a variety of applications and are known for their efficient operation and satisfactory range, enabling businesses to handle daily tasks without the worry of frequent recharging.

Large Electric Vans

For those requiring more substantial space and carrying capabilities, large electric vans offer the needed capacity. Vehicles in this category benefit from government incentives like the Plug-in Van Grant (PIVG), which can reduce the purchasing price by up to £5,000. This makes investing in a large electric van, such as those featured in the list of Best electric vans 2024, more feasible for businesses that rely on the transportation of bulk goods. The cost of some of the large EV can be intimidating but there are many EV finance options available.

Total Cost of Ownership

When assessing the total cost of ownership for an electric van, one should consider not only the initial purchase price but also depreciation, maintenance costs, and energy expenses over the lifetime of the vehicle.

Depreciation

Electric vans, like all vehicles, depreciate over time. The rate of depreciation can vary based on the brand, model, and overall demand for electric vehicles in the market. Typically, a van may lose a significant portion of its value within the first few years, with the rate slowing down as the vehicle ages.

Maintenance

Maintenance costs for electric vans are generally lower compared to traditional combustion engines. Electric vans have fewer moving parts, which can result in fewer mechanical issues. However, they may require specialised servicing which can impact the maintenance costs in the long term.

Energy Costs

Energy expenses for electric vans are fundamentally linked to the cost of electricity, which can be considerably cheaper compared to diesel fuel. According to the International Energy Agency, electricity day cost is calculated at approximately 0.07 USD/kWh, which can result in lower operational costs per kilometre compared to traditional vans.

Financing Options for Electric Vans

When purchasing an electric van, there are multiple financing options available, each with its unique benefits and considerations. Buyers can choose from leasing, loans and contract hire based on their financial situation and requirements.

Leasing

Leasing an electric van is akin to renting the vehicle for a fixed period. This arrangement typically involves lower monthly payments than a loan and may include maintenance costs. At the end of the lease term, one has the option to return the vehicle, renew the lease, or sometimes purchase the van. It’s a suitable option for those who prefer to drive a new vehicle every few years without the commitment of full ownership.

Loans

Purchasing an electric van through a loan entails borrowing the full purchase price, minus any deposit paid. Monthly repayments cover the capital plus interest. Once the loan is fully repaid, the buyer owns the van outright. Loans offer the freedom to modify the van and no restrictions on mileage, unlike leasing. For current loan rates and detailed information, prospective buyers can utilise tools like an electric van finance calculator, which can offer a clearer picture of potential costs with no obligation to apply.

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