Quick Guide to Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles PHEV | Select Car Leasing

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Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles

Welcome to our page dedicated entirely to the Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle, more commonly referred to as a 'PHEV'.

It's a growing segment in the world of electric motoring. Not sure what a PHEV is? Read on to discover if this type of EV could be your next car...

What is a Plug-in Hybrid? Will it Suit Me?

Get a quick overview of PHEVs in 6 easy steps:

  1. Basic PHEV Facts
  2. Is Range an Issue in a PHEV?
  3. Why do I Need to Charge a PHEV?
  4. What Are My Typical Monthly Running Costs?
  5. Are PHEVs Best For The Environment?
  6. Free or Low-Cost Energy For Your EV Miles

#1 Basic PHEV Facts

Being a 'hybrid' vehicle, a PHEV has both a petrol/diesel engine and a medium-sized battery.

On average, PHEVs can be driven about 30 miles on battery power alone. Once the battery runs out of charge, the petrol/diesel engine takes over for the rest of your journey.

A PHEV has a charging socket which means it can be plugged in to charge its battery. This allows you to access cheap electricity and lower the cost of your motoring.

#2 Is Range an Issue in a PHEV?

PHEVs have both a battery range and a petrol/diesel range.

Depending on which model you lease, battery range is typically 20-30 miles, but can be as much as 30-40 miles with the latest, bigger battery models.

When the battery has discharged all of its energy, the petrol or diesel engine automatically kicks in, giving you another 250-350 miles of range.

Check out our Range Guide for more details.

#3 Why do I Need to Charge a PHEV?

To be able to run on battery power – and benefit from cheap electricity – the PHEV driver needs to charge the battery each day.

If you have off-street parking, get a dedicated charging point installed. You can then charge your PHEV's battery overnight and enjoy a full 'tank of electricity' each morning. Charging time from 0-100% varies from 2-4 hours, depending on the model.

If you are on a longer trip and your battery runs out, it's usually not worth stopping to recharge. This is because a PHEV battery generally has a slow recharging rate. Better to continue your trip using the petrol/diesel engine and then recharge the battery fully at home or work at the end of the day.

Some newer cars, like the Land Rover Discovery Sport PHEV, do have relatively fast charging capabilities, and stopping to recharge on a trip is then an option. Go to our EV Charging Guide for the full picture.

#4 What Are My Typical Monthly Running Costs?

Here are guideline monthly running costs for a Mercedes A250e AMG Line Hatchback PHEV lease, based on 8,000 miles per year (4,000 electric miles + 4,000 petrol miles), 36 month term, 9 months' deposit, and assuming the battery is charged each night at an off-peak rate of 8p per kWh:

Running CostsMonthly
Lease payment£315.91*
Petrol costs£34.55**
Electricity costs£7.93**
Road tax£0
Insurance (estimate)£55.73
Total per Month£414.12


*Correct as of 7 April 2021. **Assuming petrol costs £1.14 a litre; petrol engine efficiency of 50 mpg; usable battery capacity of 11 kWh; and electric efficiency of 3.4 miles per kWh. Breakdown cover is included for at least the first year by the manufacturer.

Ready to make an enquiry?  Why not phone us on 0118 920 5130 or email at enquiries@selectcarleasing.co.uk

#5 Are PHEVs Best For The Environment?

The effect you have on the environment in a PHEV depends on various factors, including:

  1. How many miles you drive each day.
  2. Whether you charge your battery fully at the end of the day or not.
  3. Where your charging electricity comes from.

If you only drive 30 miles a day and recharge fully each night, your PHEV should mostly run on battery power alone and be fairly 'green'. Little CO2 will be emitted.

On longer trips, you get your 30 miles' environmentally friendly electric driving, but for the remaining miles your car will consume petrol or diesel inside the internal combustion engine, and your emissions will be the same as a conventional petrol or diesel car.

Finally, if you charge your PHEV with electricity generated by renewable energy technologies, e.g. wind, solar, wave or tidal, those electric miles will be as green as they possibly can be. A few UK energy suppliers now offer 100% renewable energy tariffs.

#6 Free or Low-Cost Energy for Your EV Miles

Once you drive a PHEV, and assuming you have off-street parking, your car will be physically connected to your home or office while charging.

You'll notice your monthly electricity bill will be higher, but remember you will be making significant savings for all those electric miles, as electricity is much cheaper than petrol or diesel.

To get your electricity bills down again, you can:

  1. Change energy provider and choose a new tariff designed around EV drivers.
  2. Have solar panels installed which will generate electricity from the sun to help power both your home/office and car.
  3. Put battery storage in to soak up excess solar electricity for later use. You can also use batteries to store cheap, off-peak electricity at night and then discharge it to the home/office or car during the day when electricity rates are high.

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