Comment: when EVs will just be known as ‘cars’

On Thursday What Wallcharger? attended the What Car? Awards which, as is the norm, was an event to celebrate the best cars in the UK.

 

It’s a simple premise: the What Car? team reviews cars, gives them a star rating and, at the end of the year, their judging panel selects what they think is ‘The Car of the Year’.

 

In 2023, the winner was Volkswagen’s I.D Buzz – a sort of homage to the legendary VW campers of old. You know the sort: the ones that Jamie Oliver drives on his roadtrip cooking programmes so he can look suitably cool.

That the I.D Buzz won the 2023 award raised eyebrows. Whether you like it or not, the car industry is still dominated by conventionally powered vehicles and the I.D Buzz victory represented something of sea-change in attitude, not only by the motoring media but, slowly and surely, by the car-buying public. Just yesterday, we were chatting with friends in the pub and a number of normal, not particularly eco-warriory types, were talking about making the transition to electric.

 

Why?

Well, it makes financial sense most of all. If you charge at home using a dynamic tariff, you can expect your fuel bill to be a tenth of what you might pay if you are running a diesel car.

 

So, what of the What Car? awards? Why are we talking about it now?

Well, in a number of instances EVs were up against petrol or hybrids, and there was no segmentation: EVs were not being portioned off since they are now regarded by the What Car? judging panel as cars. Soon we think the terms ‘EV’ or ‘Electric Vehicle’, will become redundant.

 

Of course, What Car? is taking this gradually. There are still distinct categories for EVs in their current awards structure, but the tide is turning.

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What Car?’s Reviews Editor Will Nightingale told What Wallcharger?: “We are seeing a change, and we think that in the next couple of years we might see EVs taking up 30% of the cars in each category. At this point we may well see the EV categories disappear from the What Car? Awards because they will just be regarded as any other car, regardless of the powertrain.”

So, for What Wallcharger?, roll on the days when EVs are just called ‘cars’.

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