Benefits of electric vehicles
Reduce emissions and noise pollution
Produces zero tailpipe greenhouse gas emissions thereby helping to improve air quality in towns and cities, as well as reducing noise pollution
Reduce transport fuel costs
Reduce your transport fuel costs by 74% compared to a similar diesel engine car
Lowest rate of motor tax available
Costing €120 per annum, electric vehicles have the lowest rate of motor tax available
Factors of consideration
Battery electric vehicle or Hybrid?
This is one of the first items to decide on. Many see hybrid vehicles as a safe option. However choosing one technology over another should be an informed choice.
Take a good look at your driving requirements. Then compare them to the driving ranges of the electric vehicles on the market. If you will rarely use the combustion engine of a hybrid, then consider whether you really need it.
Pure electric vehicles offer larger batteries and longer electric driving ranges than hybrids. But, if you make regular long distance trips and have a short commute the rest of the time, a hybrid may suit better. The more electric you drive, the cleaner and cheaper your driving experience will be.
As battery sizes increase, you may no longer need the largest battery on the market. Again, it is useful to be aware of your driving habits. If you can get away with a 24kWh battery most of the time, then why buy a 40kWh or 50kWh option.
Larger batteries cost more and you will carry the weight around even when you don't need it. Deciding what battery size you need is like deciding the engine size and fuel type of a car based on driving needs.
The most appropriate solution for your specific case should be discussed with your car dealership.
The grant level applies to Battery Electric Vehicles (BEV) and Plug In Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEV). It depends on the list price of the vehicle. This is the full non-discounted price in the absence of VRT relief or grant support.
A maximum grant of €5,000 is available for qualifying electric vehicles when purchased privately. Approved EVs with a List Price of less than €14,000 will not receive a grant.
Additional financial incentives
Direct CO2 emission values are used to calculate the Vehicle Registration Tax (VRT) and annual Motor Tax bands for vehicles.
Battery Electric Vehicles (BEV) have no tail pipe emissions of CO2
Plugin Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEV) should have CO2 emissions circa 60g/km
VRT is paid whenever a car is registered for the first time in Ireland. Electric Vehicles receive VRT relief separately to SEAI grant support. VRT relief for BEVs is in place until the end of 2021 and for PHEVs until end of 2019.
Motor Tax in January 2016 for a BEV is €120 per annum and typically €170 per annum for a PHEV.