NEW analysis shows that electric cars (EVs) are depreciating at twice the rate of petrol cars. According to the Express:
‘EVs on average will lose 51 per cent of their purchase value from 2020 to 2023, compared with just 37 per cent for petrol vehicles. This equates to a massive £15,220 loss for electric car owners, with petrol drivers seeing a decrease of £9,901.
‘The data, from ChooseMyCar.com, used a comparison of new car prices three years ago compared with their value now.
‘The higher the original purchase price of the car, the bigger the loss, with the Tesla Model S losing £25,000 in value in just three years – a 46 per cent drop. However, entry-level EVs like the Nissan Leaf are also losing a massive amount of value in such a short space of time. The Leaf’s value dropped by £13,000 – or 58 per cent – despite being one of the most popular small EVs on the market.’
There are three factors in play here. Firstly the battery life for an EV, typically around 100,000 miles, means that the car is virtually worthless once it gets to around 80,000 miles. Nobody is going to pay thousands for a car which will end up in the scrapyard a year or so later. This depreciation works its way up the chain. For instance, if you buy a petrol car with 50,000 miles on the clock, you expect to still get a reasonable trade-in three years later.
Secondly, whilst new EVs are attractive for companies and green virtue signallers thanks to government subsidies, there is very little demand for them amongst the public at large. People buy second-hand cars for a very good reason – they cannot afford new models. Consequently they cannot afford to pay a surcharge for a second-hand EV, even if they want one.
Thirdly, increasing numbers of EVs are appearing on the second-hand market, reflecting the surge in new sales in recent years. As demand has not increased, this is also forcing the price down.
The prospect of losing so much money in depreciation will inevitably make drivers think twice before buying a new one.
Meanwhile a US study has found that EVs may not reduce emissions of carbon dioxide as much as thought – indeed they may even increase emissions. According to the report, ‘the relevant and surprising emissions wildcard comes from the gargantuan, energy-hungry processes needed to make EV batteries. To match the energy stored in one pound of oil requires 15 pounds of lithium battery, which in turn entails digging up about 7,000 pounds of rock and dirt to get the minerals needed – lithium, graphite, copper, nickel, aluminum, zinc, neodymium, manganese and so on. Thus, fabricating a typical single half-ton EV battery requires mining and processing about 250 tons of materials.’
The fact that much of this mining and processing takes place in China, where energy is nearly all derived from fossil fuels, makes the carbon footprint even larger. Other studies have suggested that an EV will break even at about 60,000 miles as far as emissions are concerned. This new study implies that the situation is probably worse.
And as some of us have been warning for years, the UK and EU rush to phase out petrol/diesel cars is beginning to cause real harm to the European car industry. Whereas Europe has long had an unassailable technological lead over China in car manufacturing, EVs have introduced a level playing field which China is now exploiting through its lower energy and labour costs, along with its near-monopoly of the battery market.
As a consequence, Chinese EVs are flooding the German market. Official statistics have revealed that 28.2 per cent of the electric vehicles imported into the country during the January-March period originated from China. This figure demonstrates a substantial rise from the 7.8 per cent recorded over the same period in 2022, highlighting China’s expanding influence in the global adoption of EVs. If this was not bad enough, the data also reveals a decline of 23.9 per cent in German exports of new vehicles to China compared with the same quarter of the previous year.
Unsurprisingly, then, a major study by Allianz Trade, part of the European insurance giant, says that China’s growing share of the EV market in its home market and the EU will see the European car industry shrink by €24billion a year and associated supply chain industries shrink by an additional €21billion.
It is not only Chinese inroads into Europe which are in play here; another nail in the European motor car industry’s coffin is the fact that the enforced switch to EVs will force millions out of their cars completely, because they are simply not fit for purpose for many drivers.
Indeed it is becoming increasingly clear, with ULEZ zones, 15-minute cities and so on, that the real objective of European governments, including our own, is drastically to reduce the numbers of cars on the road, cut the mileage driven and force us all on to buses, bikes and Shanks’s pony.
They do not seem to care that they will destroy a major industry and millions of jobs as a direct consequence.
What extreme weather really looks like
THERE is no doubt that the Met Office will in due course try to paint our weather this year as extreme. They do the same every year in their attempt to link bad weather to global warming. We know the procedure – highlight a couple of storms with silly names, a mild February and a wet month sometime during the year, and claim everything is worse than ever.
So far, however, the opposite has been the case: it has been a quiet, unremarkable first few months. We have seen little in the way of extreme cold, and rainfall has been close to normal cumulatively, though as in most years some months have been dry and some wet.
Things were very different 120 years ago. In February 1903 arrived one of the strongest storms ever to hit Britain. Scientists have recently re-analysed the storm, christened Storm Ulysses, and discovered it was even much more powerful than the records of the time suggest. They say that many places would have experienced gusts of over 100mph. The cyclone left a trail of death, shipwrecks, smashed infrastructure, uprooted trees and widespread flooding.
According to Professor Ed Hawkins of the University of Reading, who led the study: ‘We think it is likely that the winds were stronger in some locations than anything in the modern period 1950-2015. The precise values are a bit uncertain as the reanalysis does not produce gust values at the surface, but they would have been pretty high to cause the damage we see in photos from the time – on a par with big storms in 1990, 1997, 1998 and the Great Storm of 1987.’
Ulysses’s ferocity was recognised at the time. But by reanalysing the raw weather observations from 1903, using the latest numerical modelling techniques like those that produce today’s daily forecasts, researchers have now obtained a new, more detailed appreciation of the event.
What the study shows is that wind speeds were often understated in times past, because limited observational ability meant anemometers were rarely situated where the maximum gusts occurred. In contrast, nowadays there are thousands of automatic wind speed recorders around the country, and often at the most exposed sites, such as the Needles off the Isle of Wight, which regularly appears at the top of the Met Office’s wind speed charts.
Ulysses was not the only historically significant weather event of 1903. Four months later, London and much of the South East experienced the wettest June for more than 300 years. Writing in 2003, the late weather historian Philip Eden noted: ‘Exactly 100 years ago there was a prolonged downpour and flood without precedent in London’s meteorological history. In over 300 years of rainfall recording in the capital, June 1903 ranks as the wettest individual month, yet there was no rain at all during the first week, nor during the last ten days.’
According to one local historian, the fields between Wanstead Park and Ilford were like an open sea and the railway track at Seven Kings resembled a shallow river. The Lea Valley was one vast lake, as the Essex County Chronicle reported: ‘In the large area of low-lying ground between Lea Bridge, Ilford, Barking, and East Ham, houses stood in a great inland sea, which was washing over the garden fences and lapping at the lower windows. Upstairs the occupants could be seen moving about or gazing hopelessly out at the dreary waste of black waters. Boats from Barking Creek were rowing about with supplies of milk and bread, and those who wished were taken away.’
If you thought things could not get any worse that year, they did! After a continuation of the miserable, wet weather through the summer, October 1903 turned out to be the wettest of any month by far in England.
The Met Office continue to claim that global warming means that our weather is getting more extreme. The actual data shows the opposite to be true.