The best insurance for electric cars (EVs) - A guide

Electric vehicle being charged

Electric cars are growing in popularity across the UK, with more and more drivers attracted to the more eco-friendly way of getting around.

With battery technology advancing all the time, and with the government confirming that all new cars sold after 2040 will be electric or hybrid cars, the growth of electric vehicles on our roads is only set to continue.

While this raises a lot of questions regarding battery ranges, charging points and the used car market, it also means big changes are coming in terms of car insurance.

Car manufacturers are working on developing an entirely new generation of cars, with new brands such as Tesla now a common sight on UK roads. If you are one of the early adopters – or are thinking about taking the plunge – you might have some questions about what the best insurance for electric cars is.

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Do you need specialist insurance for electric cars?

Yes and no. Car insurance companies are working hard on normalising electric vehicle ownership, so want to make it as easy for drivers to buy insurance for electric cars as it is for traditional petrol and diesel cars.

However, owning an electric car presents different risks for car owners – so it is wise to make sure your insurance takes into account these differences.

For example, electric car owners may want their insurance to cover them for:

  • Running out of charge. Some insurers are offering recovery to the nearest charge point if your battery runs out. This can also include coverage from AFF, the national roadside electric car charging assistance company, who can charge your car by the roadside.
  • Accidental damage, fire and theft of home charging cables, wall boxes and adaptors. Owning an electric car means you need to keep a charging kit at home – some of which can be quite expensive.
  • Accidental damage, fire and theft of the car’s battery – even if you are leasing it separately from the car (see below).
  • Guaranteed electric or hybrid courtesy car. If your electric car is in for repairs, you may prefer the use of a similar courtesy car.

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What insurance do I need if I am leasing the battery for my electric car?

To make it cheaper to buy an EV, some major manufacturers such as Nissan and Renault offer the chance for motorists to buy the car and then lease the battery separately. As electric car batteries are known to deteriorate over the years, it can actually make financial sense to lease the battery, so you don’t have to shell out for a new one every few years.

If you are leasing your car battery, you will need to notify your car insurance company when you take out your policy. This is because if the car is written off then the insurance company will need to pay you to replace the car and pay the manufacturer for the lost battery.

What if someone trips over my charging cable at home?

If you can only charge your electric car at home while it’s parked on the street, then there is the possibility that a member of the public could trip over the cable and injure themselves – which could mean you facing allegations of negligence and being the subject of a personal injury claim. 

Many car insurance providers have considered this risk and include a level of cover within your policy to protect against this, so long as you have taken ‘reasonable steps’ to prevent such an accident or injury from happening.

However, it should be noted that most policies only offer this cover for cables that were purchased as part of the car – if you buy your own cables they may not be covered.

Tap the button below to get a car insurance quote for your electric vehicle, or take a look at our useful guides below for further information.

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