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Electric van insurance

Find out all you need to know to get the right electric van insurance

Derri Dunn
Derri Dunn
Updated 25 February 2021  | 4 min read

How much is electric van insurance?

Electric vans are getting more and more commonplace, so insurers are increasingly willing to cover them.

That means more competition between insurers, which is good for you as it helps push prices down.

Your quotes will depend on your own personal circumstances and the van you drive.

For example, a more powerful electric van will be pricier to insure than a smaller one.

Van insurance costs will also be high if you’re a young driver, as you'll have less driving experience. Insurers take driving experience into account when assessing your risk of claiming. 

What does electric van insurance cover? 

Most mainstream insurers will be able to cover electric vehicles and what’s included in your policy will depend on the level you choose:

Third party only

This is the minimum level of cover you legally need for your electric van. It covers damage you cause to other people, their vehicles or their property.

Third party, fire and theft

Covers theft of your van, fire damage and third party claims.

Comprehensive

The highest level of cover which includes everything TPFT does, plus damage to your own van.


Some insurers will offer some cover for the unique risks of electric vans:

  • Power cable cover – in case it’s stolen or damaged while you’re plugged in.
  • Battery cover – claims handling that takes into account that you own the car but lease the battery.

Check your policy to see exactly what cover you have for your electric van.

What are the advantages of an electric van?

Most people buy an electric van because they’re really cheap to run. But there are other benefits:

  1. Low fuel costs – Petrol and diesel vans cost a lot in fuel. Electric vans are incredibly cheap to charge in comparison, costing a pound or two to recharge overnight
  2. Plug-in grant – The government’s plug-in grant knocks 35% off the list price capped at £3,000 for small vans and £6,000 for large ones. Find a list of vans that are eligible for the grant here.
  3. No vehicle tax – all electric vans are exempt from vehicle excise duty
  4. Congestion charge discount – Electric vans in London don’t pay congestion charge as they benefit from the Cleaner Vehicle Discount
  5. Service costs – Electric vans tend to have lower servicing costs as there are fewer moving parts and less to go wrong
  6. Pleasant driving experience – electric vans are almost silent to drive and are fume-free, which is refreshing when you’re used to a noisy older van engine. They’re also automatic, which can make driving easier.

 Are there disadvantages? 

There are some drawbacks to electric vans:

  1. Initial costs – Electric vans are still more expensive to buy than their petrol or diesel models.
  2. Range anxiety – EV ranges are increasing all the time and so is the number of public charging points. But you might still find electric van ranges fall short of what you need, especially if you regularly carry heavy cargo or drive long distance.
  3. Resale value – the high upfront cost and a quickly developing market can mean resale values are lower than you might hope.
  4. Battery costs – while service costs for electric vans are generally lower than petrol or diesel models, the battery can make up a large chunk of the vehicle’s value. That means if it needs repairing or replacing out of warranty, the costs can run to thousands of pounds.

What are the benefits of an electric fleet for my business?

All of the benefits of electric vehicles are magnified if your business has a fleet of vehicles. The fuel, VED and congestion charge savings could be very significant multiplied by several vehicles.

There are some other tax benefits to setting up your own electric fleet for your business:

  • Electric vans have a 100% first year capital allowance, which means you can offset the cost of buying new vans against your company’s tax bill.
  • Your employees pay less company car tax on electric vehicles as they fall into lower tax bands
  • Electricity doesn’t count as a fuel when calculating a benefit in kind – so again, there’s an income tax saving for employees using work vehicles for personal use or charging their own electric vehicles at your workplace charging facilities.

If you need to insure more than one electric van for your business, fleet insurance could save you money. It means all your drivers and vehicles will be covered under one policy (although there are sometimes some age restrictions for drivers).

If the employee benefits and company savings aren’t enough to tempt you, then a switch to electric vehicles is great for your company’s modern, green image too.

International and UK companies are embracing green vans, from Amazon rolling out a fleet of custom-built electric vans, to Tesco committing to a fully electric delivery fleet by 2028.

How far will my electric van go on one charge? 

Electric vans are typically used for ‘last mile’ services – courier and delivery for the last part of the journey, not for long-range cargo hauling.

But ranges continue to improve and the electric van claiming the longest range is the Renault Zoe Van, at 245 miles. The catch is that it’s essentially shaped like a small car, but is classed as a commercial vehicle due to its load area and lack of rear seats.

These are the ranges for some other popular electric vans:


Electric van model Range[1]
Peugeot Partner/Citroen Berlingo Electric 171 miles
Nissan ENV200 124 miles
Renault Kangoo Z.E. 143 miles
Renault Master 75 miles
Mercedes E Sprinter 96 miles
Mercedes E Vito 92 miles

Range and cold weather

Electric vehicle ranges and charge time are affected by heat and cold.

So you’ll have to allow for a shorter range in winter and might need to plug in a bit longer.

[1] Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP) quoted ranges for combined cycle. Taken from manufacturers’ websites for current model in February 2021.

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