LeasePlan: ‘EV cheapest option despite energy price inflation’

What turned out to be a significant trend in 2021 is now reconfirmed for 2022: electric cars are in nearly every segment and almost every European country at the same price level or cheaper than gasoline or diesel cars when considering the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO).

LeasePlan did the math again for 22 European countries and cars in every segment for its yearly Car Cost Index (CCI). Even with galloping electricity prices, fuel costs remain significantly lower for electric vehicles than gasoline and diesel cars.

LeasePlan points out that fuel costs represent 15% of the total cost of ownership of an EV, while this is 23% for gasoline and 28% for diesel.

Total Cost of Ownership

The TCO calculation includes energy or fuel, purchase price, depreciation and resale price, interests, taxes, insurance, and maintenance for a car being used for four years with an average of 30 000 km per year.

Most people aren’t aware of the actual cost of driving a car, as they tend to forget that the purchase price on which they often base their choice is less than half of the equation.

EVs have a significantly higher initial purchase price but still compensate for that by lower ‘fuel’ costs, despite the higher electricity prices with the current energy crisis.

For its Car Cost Index, LeasePlan compared the average TCO of a car in 22 European countries based on various car segments and fuel types.

It shows that the monthly costs in Switzerland (€1 313), Norway (€1 249), and the Netherlands (€1 166) are the highest. France (€999) is among the cheaper ones, with Poland (€927) and Greece (€905) as the champions. Belgium (€1 103) and Germany (€1 130) are in the higher middle bracket.

LeasePlan Car Cost Index 2022

When looking at the different car segments, it’s clear that in the group of the sub-compact cars (B1-B1 SUV) with a VW Polo, a Peugeot 208, or Opel Mokka, for instance, electric is steadily becoming more competitive in 9 of 22 countries.

Here the higher initial investment for an EV outweighs the fuel cost more significantly, except when government incentives like in France make the difference.

Here an electric Peugeot 208 scores best at €697 per month, compared to €774 for the diesel version and €753 for gasoline. However, there is no TCO advantage in Germany, with €995 for the EV, compared to €887 and €860.

EVs are almost everywhere best option

But once you’re aiming higher, the EV is almost everywhere the better option today. In the popular Csegment, examples like the Renault Megane or Kia Niro, electric cars are more affordable in most European countries (18/22).

Same conclusion for the D1 segment with representatives like the VW Passat or the Hyundai Ionq 5. In all countries (19/22), except for Poland, Italy, and the Czech Republic, EVs come out best. PHEVs are almost always the most expensive option of all.

Belgium, where company cars rule

Looking at the midsize premium segment (D2 & SUVD2) with popular lease cars like the BMW 3 Series and the Audi Q4 e-tron, there is no doubt: EVs are on top in 18 of 22 countries. And once again, plug-in hybrids that remain popular in several countries, nourished by the range anxiety for BEVs that stays with many drivers, are doing worst of all.

Taking the example of Belgium, where company cars and a lot of them from the D2 segment make out up to 60% of the new vehicles registered yearly, a BEV costs, on average €1 199 per month. Diesel comes in second at €1 245, with gasoline cars following at €1 310. PHEVs with their double driveline pay the most: €1 559.




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