Electric cars have gained popularity in recent years due to their eco-friendliness and cost efficiency. While they may initially come with a hefty price tag, the good news is that a new affordable electric car will soon be available in the UK. Dacia, renowned for producing economical vehicles, has announced that they will be introducing a car that costs less than 20,000. Although the model being discussed is not the one making its way to the UK, it provides an insight into what can be expected by the end of 2024.
The Cheapest New Electric Car is Coming to the UK
About the Dacia Spring
In France, two versions of the Dacia Spring are available: the cheaper Spring Essential 45 and the slightly more expensive Spring Extreme 65. These models are priced around 18,000 to 20,000, which is comparable to the cost of a base model Kia Picanto with a petrol engine. However, in France, electric car incentives are still in place, allowing customers to purchase the Spring for around 15,000.
Advantages of the Dacia Spring
Despite the lack of grants in the UK, the Dacia Spring still promises to be the most affordable new electric car in the market. The low price of the vehicle, coupled with its cost-effective running capabilities, makes it an attractive choice for budget-conscious drivers. Electric cars eliminate the need for expensive petrol or diesel, and the Dacia Spring’s impressive range of 100 miles on an overnight electric tariff makes it even more appealing.
The Future of Electric Cars in the UK
Although the Dacia Spring available in France is not the exact model coming to the UK, it shares the same underlying technology. This gives us a glimpse into what can be expected from the affordable electric car arriving in the UK by the end of 2024. As electric cars continue to gain popularity, advancements in technology and increased production could potentially lead to even more affordable options in the future.
The Advantages of the Spring Electric Car
Data suggests that the new Spring Electric Car will outperform its competitors, such as the Volkswagen id2 and Citroen C3 electric 2. While these models are priced around 21,000 pounds, the Spring Electric Car offers a more affordable option, especially considering most buyers opt for finance deals. In fact, the cost of the Spring Electric Car could be lower than the average monthly petrol bill. Additionally, the Spring Electric Car provides access to special leasing and subscription deals, giving it an advantage over used electric cars.
A Modern and Tech-Savvy Interior
The interior of the Spring Electric Car is designed with a modern aesthetic. The inclusion of copper accents, although reminiscent of Cupra cars, adds a nice touch. However, it’s important to note that the overall feel of the interior may be slightly cheap, which is to be expected in this price range. Despite this, the technology featured in the 65 extreme version of the Spring Electric Car is impressive. It includes a reversing camera, satellite navigation, phone mirroring capabilities, and air conditioning. Overall, the technological aspects of the car are commendable.
A Compact and Slightly Cramped Space
One drawback of the Spring Electric Car is its size. Even when compared to vehicles like the Volkswagen e up, the Spring Electric Car feels quite small. As a result, the interior space can feel cramped, and occupants may feel a sense of height due to the compact nature of the car. Additionally, there seems to be no way to adjust the steering wheel height, which can make the driving position feel unnatural. Being unable to customize the driving position to personal preference is a notable disadvantage for potential buyers to consider.
Final Thoughts and Your Input
The Spring Electric Car presents an intriguing option for individuals looking for an affordable and technologically advanced vehicle. While the interior may feel cheap and the size may be restrictive, the advantages of lower cost and access to special deals make it a compelling choice. However, it’s important to consider personal preferences and needs when deciding between the Spring Electric Car and alternatives like the year-old Volkswagen e up or a two-year-old Corsa electric. We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section, and if you enjoyed this article, consider subscribing for more content.
Cost Cutting with Fragile Switches and Tinny Doors
There are noticeable signs of cost cutting in this small car. While the switches feel a bit fragile, the doors shut with a tinny sound that can make you question if you’ve closed them properly. It’s important to take note of these small details when considering the overall quality of the vehicle.
Interior Space and Seating
The car’s interior space is reasonably spacious, although it’s worth mentioning that you sit in a more upright position compared to a traditional City car. In the back seat, however, the lack of space becomes more apparent. As someone who is only five foot eight, I struggled to find enough room. Even someone taller, like my friend Ryan, noted that there wasn’t much space available. With only two seat belts, it’s clear that this car is not designed for more than two occupants, and even then, it might be uncomfortable for anyone beyond primary school age.
Payload Capacity and Weight Limitations
This small car has a payload capacity of 330 kilograms. While this may seem sufficient for everyday use, it’s important to consider specific scenarios where you might approach or exceed the weight limit. For instance, if you have four hefty passengers or a significant amount of luggage, like a rugby team traveling for a match, you could potentially reach the car’s maximum weight. It’s crucial to be aware of these limitations, especially if you frequently carry heavy loads.
Boot Space and Accessibility
The car comes with a 290-liter boot, which is quite impressive considering its size. It actually surpasses the boot capacity of a Peugeot e208, for example. However, accessing the boot does come with some challenges. The opening is tiny and may create difficulties when trying to fit larger items, such as a pushchair. Additionally, there is a significant lip that needs to be navigated when loading items into the boot. Another limitation is that the back seat does not split, meaning you cannot adjust the configuration to accommodate longer items while still having some seating capacity.
In , while this small car may offer some advantages in terms of space and boot capacity, there are evident drawbacks to consider. The fragility of the switches and the tinny sound of the doors indicate cost-cutting measures that may affect the overall durability of the vehicle. Furthermore, the limited seating capacity and payload restriction may be limiting factors for those who require more flexibility in their transportation needs. It’s essential to carefully evaluate these aspects before making a purchase decision.
The Tiny Windscreen and Complicated Mechanism
One unique feature of this car is its tiny windscreen. While it may be a space-saving design, it limits the car’s functionality. You can either have a load or passengers, but not both at the same time. The windscreen is so small that it only requires one wiper. However, the mechanism behind this wiper is truly fascinating to watch. It’s a complex system that efficiently clears the windshield. Although it’s intriguing, it’s best not to lean too heavily on the bonnet, as it may cause damage.
Decoding the Model Names
You might assume that the numbers in the model names (“45” and “65”) indicate the battery size of the car. However, that’s not the case. These numbers actually represent the engine power of the vehicle. So, the “45” model has 45 horsepower, while the “65” model boasts 65 horsepower. Compared to a one-liter Kia Picanto, 65 horsepower is relatively good. On the other hand, 45 horsepower may not seem like much. In fact, some electric drills actually have more power than that.
Let’s talk about the naught to 62 times. This metric measures how quickly the car can accelerate from a standstill to 62 miles per hour. The 65 model performs reasonably well in this aspect, taking 13.7 seconds to accomplish the task. While it’s not exceptionally fast, it’s respectable. On the other hand, the 45 model takes 19.7 seconds, which is about as fast as the passport queue at Heathrow. However, speed is not the main focus of this car.
An Ideal City Car
This vehicle is primarily designed for city driving. It excels in maneuvering through traffic and navigating tight spaces. Even on country lanes, it doesn’t give the impression of holding up other vehicles like a Citron Ami might. One contributing factor to this nimbleness could be the smaller battery size, making the car lighter in weight. This efficiency creates a virtuous circle, enhancing the car’s overall performance. With a weight of only 975 kilograms, it is comparable to a petrol-engine Kia Picanto, while being half the weight of a Volkswagen ID3.
In , this car may have its limitations, such as the tiny windscreen and lower performance compared to other models. However, it shines as an efficient and agile city car. Its lightweight design, combined with the smaller battery, allows for effortless maneuverability. So, if you’re looking for a car that can easily zip through city traffic without compromising on efficiency, this might be the ideal choice for you.
The Battery Size and Range
The electric car industry has been evolving rapidly, with manufacturers constantly trying to find the right balance between battery size and range. In the case of this particular model, a smaller battery is utilized, with a capacity of just under 27 kilowatt hours. While this may be smaller than some of its competitors, such as the Vauxhall Corsa electric, it still outperforms my original Nissan Leaf. Surprisingly, despite its modest battery size, the car boasts an impressive range of 140 miles. This range is greater than rivals like the Honda e and Mazda mx 30, even though they feature larger batteries. The car’s efficiency not only allows for a decent range but also results in lower electricity consumption.
Charging: Designed for Home Use
To cater to the needs of the average electric car owner, this model is designed to be charged at home, with an emphasis on slow, overnight charging. This is evident from the placement of the charging flap at the front of the car, which makes it convenient for parking. The charging flap is surprisingly robust and showcases the manufacturer’s commitment to quality, despite cost-cutting efforts. While the car does offer optional fast charging, it comes at an additional cost and is not particularly quick.
No Regenerative Braking: Cost-Effective Design Approach
One surprising feature that this car lacks is regenerative braking. In all my previous experiences with electric cars, regenerative braking has been a staple feature. Regenerative braking allows for the recovery of energy when decelerating or braking, thereby enhancing overall efficiency. In this case, however, the absence of this feature is a cost-cutting measure. While lifting off the throttle does provide some braking effect and energy regeneration, pressing the brake pedal does not offer the additional regenerative benefits found in other electric cars. The exclusion of this feature helps keep the overall cost of the car low.
The Joy of Driving the Spring: A Small Car for Urban Adventures
Smooth Ride, Bumpy Lanes
The Spring may be a small car, but it packs a punch when it comes to maneuvering through urban areas. However, when you venture onto country lanes, you’ll have to brace yourself for a bumpy ride. The car tends to bounce around a lot, and the steering feels slightly sticky, almost as if the electric motor is struggling to keep up with your inputs. The lack of noise insulation also means that you’ll hear a fair share of road and wind noise, highlighting the cost-cutting measures in this budget-friendly vehicle.
Zipping Through Town
In spite of its shortcomings on rough terrain, the Spring excels in urban environments. Mini roundabouts, cars abruptly pulling in front of you, and cyclists whizzing by are no match for this nimble car. Its power delivery is impressive, allowing you to effortlessly squeeze into gaps. Furthermore, its narrow width is an advantage as it can navigate through tight spaces with ease. Additionally, the Spring has an incredibly small turning circle, making it a breeze to maneuver through crowded city streets. In town, the Spring feels perfectly at home, making it a joy to drive in stop-start traffic while maintaining a composed ride over potholes and speed bumps.
A Slight Learning Curve
While the Spring’s performance in urban areas is commendable, there are a few aspects that may take some getting used to. The controls may not react as quickly as expected, so be prepared for a slight delay when making adjustments. Additionally, the power steering gear selector can catch you off guard if you’re not careful. However, with a little practice, these quirks can be quickly overcome, allowing you to fully enjoy the Spring’s capabilities.
Finding Parking Spots Others Can’t
One advantage that the Spring holds over larger SUVs is its ability to fit into tight parking spaces. You’ll find yourself chuckling as you effortlessly squeeze into spots that SUV drivers have shied away from. The Spring’s small size becomes a true advantage in busy urban areas where parking is often a challenge. Embrace the car’s compact nature and take pride in claiming those elusive parking spots that others dare not attempt.
In , the Spring is a small car with a big personality. While it may struggle on rough country lanes and require some adjustment to its controls, it truly shines in urban areas. Its power delivery, narrow width, and small turning circle make it a pleasure to drive in crowded city streets. So why not embrace the joy of driving the Spring and embark on urban adventures where no parking spot is too challenging to conquer?
The Springs Attraction: More Than Just Price
When it comes to maneuvering in a hurry, The Springs attraction may not respond as quickly as desired. While it may only be a matter of fractions of a second, this delay can be frustrating, especially if there are people waiting behind you while attempting a parallel park. However, there is much more to The Springs attraction than just its price.
A Suitable Choice for All
The Springs attraction may offer a price tag that caters to various budgets, but its appeal extends beyond financial considerations. Whether you’re an experienced driver or a young family living in a town, this car has something to offer. With just the right amount of space, ease of driving, and enjoyable experience, The Springs attraction is certainly an efficient choice for all.
As the next version of The Springs attraction hits the UK market, there are expectations of some improvements. The current model may have a few minor issues, such as slow regen braking, but it is hoped that these will be resolved. This would make the car even more efficient, aligning with the needs of environmentally conscious consumers.
While The Springs attraction presents itself as a good effort in the electric car world, its safety kit falls short of being top-notch. With only one star in Euro NCAP ratings, families may have legitimate concerns about the level of protection this car offers. However, it is worth considering the car as a whole, as it still holds the potential to be a welcome addition to the market.
The Deciding Factor: Financing
Ultimately, the success of The Springs attraction may be dependent on the financing packages it offers. A car’s price and features can be attractive, but if the finance deals do not meet the needs and expectations of consumers, it may hinder its popularity. As potential buyers, we can only hope that The Springs attraction comes with good enough financing options to seal the deal.
The Dacia Spring offers hope to those who desire an electric car but have been deterred by their high prices. With its impending arrival in the UK, the Dacia Spring aims to become the cheapest new electric car on the market. While grants may not be available in Britain, the overall cost efficiency and eco-friendly nature of electric cars make them an attractive alternative to traditional petrol or diesel vehicles. The future is bright for electric cars, and the Dacia Spring is just the beginning of more affordable options to come.
This electric car demonstrates a commendable approach to balancing efficiency and cost-effectiveness. Despite its smaller battery size, it manages to offer an impressive range, outperforming some competitors with larger batteries. The car’s design is centered around home charging, and while it does provide optional fast charging, it is not the quickest option available. Furthermore, the absence of regenerative braking is a strategic decision made to maintain affordability. All in all, this electric car provides an appealing option for those seeking an efficient and budget-friendly means of transportation.