5 reasons why your next car should be an ultra-low emission vehicle

If you’re looking for a new car, have you considered an Ultra-Low Emission Vehicle? Ultra-Low Emission Vehicles, or ULEV’s, are becoming an increasingly common sight on British roads, and they are only becoming more popular.

So why should your next car be a ULEV? We take a look at five reasons why you should look at an ultra-low emission vehicle for your next car.

1. It’s good for the environment

I’m sure I don’t have to tell you this, but ULEVs are the best thing the automotive industry have done for the environment so far.

According to environmental-protection.org, road transport is accountable for 22% of the total UK emissions of CO2. As of 2014, the UK is producing 422.0 million tonnes of CO2 a year. That means that road transport produces 92,840,000 tonnes of CO2 a year.[vc_single_image image=”48788″ img_size=”article-image”]The Department of Health estimates that poor air quality costs us up to £17 billion each year. This is though the likes of increased health problems and reduced life expectancy. Running a ULEV in a densely populated area, such as the capital, reduces the level of air pollution in the air.

Also, by investing in a ULEV, you’ll be greatly reducing your contribution to noise pollution. Noise from road traffic affects 30% of people in the UK and can cause stress and other health problems. We can’t have completely silent cars, that would have some serious safety implications, but the electric car industry are moving forward to create cars that are safe and do not compromise on their low noise levels.


If you got an ultra-low emission vehicle, you’d be able to drive safe in the knowledge that you really are making a difference to the environment, both in the grand scheme of things and closer to home.

2. They pay for themselves

Okay, maybe not literally, they aren’t that clever yet. But, their cheap running costs and their power of exemption make them very appealing.

One of the biggest obstacles for ULEVs is getting over the hefty price tag. They are expensive, even the smaller city cars. There’s no point lying, you can get a petrol or diesel car for significantly cheaper than you can a ULEV.

However, they are much cheaper to run. It can cost as little as 2p per mile to run a ULEV. If you charge your car overnight at home, it will cost you about £3.00. I think we can agree that this costs significantly less than refuelling a traditional car, as this tends to cost between 12p and 21p per mile.

You also pay a lot less road tax, company car tax and are exempt from congestion charge, but we’ll come onto those in a little bit. There are also quite a few government incentives to help you with the cost, including giving you up to £4,500 off the price of a new electric car. There are also incentives for vans, and businesses.

Essentially, while you might be paying more initially for your ULEV, it will pay off in the long run when it costs you next to nothing to run.

3. They can travel further than they ever could

[vc_single_image image=”47104″ img_size=”medium” add_caption=”yes” onclick=”link_image”]Range anxiety? What range anxiety?

ULEVs can travel further than they have ever been able to travel and it won’t be long before range anxiety is a thing of the past. Many electric cars can travel well over 100 miles on one charge, with Tesla obviously taking the top spot with over 200 miles. There are also more charging points than ever before. There are currently 11796 connectors in 4226 across the UK and that number is growing as we speak.Some would argue that when you do run out of charge you have to wait for it to charge up but on the flip side, if you’re driving over 100 miles in one go, you deserve a break for a bit.

4. Beat the system, sort of.

Beat the system in the most environmentally conscious way by getting a ULEV.

If you invest in a ULEV you are beating a number of pieces of legislation that are looking to be introduced and several car tax changes that are coming into effect in April 2017.

Let’s start with the car tax changes. There are changes to road tax that mean there are more tax bandings for lower emission vehicles. How do you beat the system here? Well, you’ll need to get a ULEV before April 2017 but even if you don’t, you’ll still be paying significantly less than everyone else. You can find out more about 2017 car tax changes here.There are also changes to company car tax, with the introduction of more BIK rates. These will, a little bit unfairly, target lower emission vehicles. But again, they won’t come into effect until April 2017 which means you have five months from now (December 2016) to get yourself a brand new ULEV company car.

So, if you want to avoid quite the company car tax hike, it’s worth getting a ULEV.[vc_single_image image=”46679″ img_size=”article-image”]There is also a lot of legislation expected to go ahead that will end up wishing you had invested in a ULEV. This includes Sadiq Khan’s plan to make central London an ultra-low emission zone by 2019 and the proposal to put in place a surcharge for older, more polluting vehicles.  

There are also idling charges, clean air zones, and Energy Savings Opportunity Schemes that are all going to affect you if you don’t have a car that fits the criteria. So, you might as well beat the system and invest in a ULEV to avoid all these extra charges.

5.  The divisive look

This is sort of a bonus reason, because this may not be a reason to get a ULEV. However, it is worth including.

Many ULEVs that are on the market currently are pretty divisive looking. They aren’t the most attractive bunch of cars, but that doesn’t necessarily have to be a bad thing. In the time of the Kia Soul, Nissan Juke and C4 Cactus’, we can safely say that the divisive looking cars are in.

People will either love your ULEV or hate it. But, they will be talking about it, scowling as they have to pay their congestion charge.


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