Today’s market has more choice than ever before when you’re looking for a new car. From small details like the exterior colour and ambient interior lights through to larger details like the body shape and what type of engine.

Diesel, Petrol or Electric - Which is the Right Choice for You?

To help you decide whether petrol, diesel or electric is the right choice for your next car we’ve taken an in depth look at the benefits and costs for each of them.

Pros of Diesel:

  • Vehicles with a diesel engine offer you better fuel efficiency which means less filling up or charging mile for mile than other options.
  • Diesel vehicles have lower CO2 emissions than petrol vehicles. This is not only better for the environment but also if you're looking at a company car better for you, as CO2 emissions are one of the factors in calculating company car tax.
  • Diesel cars can achieve higher toque which gives them greater towing capacity.
  • Typically they have better overtaking power than other vehicles, making them a good choice if you're doing a lot of motorway driving.

Cons of Diesel:

  • Upfront diesel cars are typically more expensive than their petrol counterparts if you are purchasing outright. If you're thinking of leasing instead, just give us a call on 0330 221 0000 and we can discuss your options.
  • As road tax is in part based on the fuel type and RDE2 compliancy, diesel cars are generally in a higher tax band.
  • Some low emission and clean air zones also place higher tariffs on diesel cars making driving in some cities more expensive for diesel owners.
  • Despite having lower CO2 emissions diesel cars emit other pollutants, including nitrogen oxide.

For more information on diesel cars take a look at this guide.

 Pros of Petrol:

  • Petrol is cheaper to buy than diesel, so a tank of fuel is usually cheaper.
  • Petrol cars tend to have the lowest purchase price and cheaper servicing and maintenance costs.
  • Compared to diesel vehicles petrol have lower overall emissions of pollutants like nitrogen oxides.

Cons of Petrol:

  • Petrol cars are not as fuel-efficient as other cars so although a tank of petrol is cheaper than diesel you’ll likely be filling up more often.
  • Although petrol cars emit less nitrogen oxide and other pollutants petrol cars have higher CO2 emissions than the other type of vehicles.
  • Higher CO2 emissions also means higher company car tax rates.

An orange electric Smart car being charged

The UK government has banned the sale of any new vehicle that isn't fully electric from 2030 and so we're seeing more and more people considering making the switch. 

There are two types of electric vehicles, fully electric and hybrid. You can see a more in depth look at these on our electric guide or hybrids guide but we’ve rounded up some of the key benefits and costs below:

Pros of Fully Electric:

  • It's cheaper to charge a vehicle than to fill up a tank with diesel or petrol.
  • Zero emissions from the vehicle mean this is better for the wider environment as well as helping to improve the air quality in your local environment.
  • If you opt for a fully electric vehicle there is a government grant which reduces the initial purchase price. If you are leasing this is applied by the dealer so that your monthly rentals are reduced.
  • There is also a government grant to help with the cost of installing a home charging unit.

Cons of Fully Electric:

  • Electric vehicles have a limited distance they can travel between charges which can cause range anxiety for longer journeys.
  • Finding a public charger might be difficult and if you are renting or don’t have off street parking then installing a home charger might also be a challenge.
  • Depending on the model and charger used it can take a while for the car to be fully charged.
  • Electric models are typically more expensive.

Pros of Hybrid:

  • Depending on the hybrid you might be able to travel several miles on the electric mode. 
  • As a hybrid has a combustion engine as well as they don’t have the range anxiety of fully electric vehicle.
  • Hybrids emit fewer emissions than a petrol or diesel engine powered cars so are better for the environment.
  • There are some tax exemptions and incentives available on hybrids at the minute though less than on fully electric vehicles.

Cons of Hybrid:

  • You still need to fill up with traditional fuel as well as charging if you opt for a plug-in hybrid (PHEV).
  • If you do opt for a PHEV then you will need to factor in how you will charge the vehicle in order to get the full benefit of your hybrid.
  • Although they do not emit as many emissions overall, when you’re not in fully electric mode hybrids still emit emissions.
  • The sale of new hybrids has also been banned from 2030 and most incentives are now just on fully electric models.

We’ve taken a look at some of the general benefits of hybrids here but for a more detailed breakdown for each kind of hybrid click here.

Your driving patterns will also help determine which fuel type works best for you. If you do a lot of long motorway driving then diesel will probably be the best choice, but if you only do short journeys or inner city driving then a petrol or even fully electric vehicle could be the right option.

It's ultimately up to you what fuel type fits in with your driving and lifestyle choices but if you would like to discuss it further or have any questions then please give us a call on 0330 221 0000

To find out more about diesel vehicles then check out this guide, this one on petrol vehicles, or if you want more info on electric click here and here for hybrids.

If you’ve got any questions then please give us a call on 0330 221 0000 and one of our Leasing Consultants will be happy to help.

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