Springfords LLP blog

Some news, views and comments about everything and anything, relevant and irreverent.

Are Cars Electric

27 March 2017

Springfords have plugged in to the electric revolution. Our Eskbank HQ has powered up with a dedicated charging point for hybrids and full-electric vehicles. Next time you call in to get a watts watt on your accounting and tax position, you won’t meet any resistance as you top up your modern mode of transport too.

For a lot of the Springfords generation, Tesla meant the progressive avant-garde heavy metal band of the nineties and naughties. These days, Tesla makes a completely different sort of melody, and means a different sort of progress, as Elon Musk’s coupe marks the stylish end of the fully electric car market.

The old joke, that we’re not ashamed to trot out, used to be that electric cars were cheap but the fifty-mile extension cables were completely unaffordable. The element of truth behind that groan-worthy bon mot is that, until recently, fifty miles was about as far as you could get in an electric car. The range might be double that, but you’d not find anywhere to recharge the battery at the end of your journey, so you’d have to turn back when your power reserves reached 50%.

Much to the dismay of second-rate comedians, things have rapidly and radically changed in the past five years. Electric cars are not yet actually as cheap as chips, but the need for an extension cable, in the real-life iteration of range anxiety, has significantly diminished. Here at Springfords, we’re doing our part.

While Elon Musk, and a horde of other manufacturers are researching ever more ingenious ways to make electric cars and batteries more efficient, we’ve accomplished the equally difficult task of getting agreement with the whole office, about just exactly where to site our recharging point.

We’re very proud of our charging point, but the real breakthrough is that we’re far from the only ones. There are charging points springing up all over the country - from supermarkets to council offices. We’re not quite at the stage of having a charging point on every lamppost, but the general feeling is that we’re approaching that tipping point where the availability of charging points makes range a non-issue.

Given that the other major manufacturers are taking electric traction very seriously, the inevitability of mass-market availability is on the cusp of taking off. There are already plans for electric car and battery manufacture in the UK in a big way, and showrooms already feature hybrid versions of familiar models.

However, let’s not blow a fuse in excitement. The age of internal combustion and compression combustion (that’s petrol and diesel engines) is far from over. The comparatively huge size of the existing hydrocarbon fleet means that the conventionally powered vehicle will be with us for a long time yet. It’s likely to be a decade or two before the electric alternative becomes the norm and, even if manufacturers stop producing oil-fuelled cars right now, there will still be vehicles delivered new today that are on the road in twenty years’ time.

We don’t have a battery-powered crystal ball at Springfords, so you’ll have to seek alternative expert advice on where the future of road fuel and trends lie. However, whatever your decisions on business transport, Springfords can give you serious advice on the taxation and financial implications for you and your business, and what to expect from the life-time return on investment.

One thing we would suggest is that, as electric power gains significant traction, there’s going to be a reduction in the duty collected on hydrocarbon fuels. How the government of the day makes up that loss of tax revenue is anyone’s guess, but it’s a certainty the loss will be made up somewhere. That’s maybe something to discuss with us, while your sleek new electric chariot fuels up at our sleek new charging point.

About the Springfords blog

springfords blog

Some news, views and comments about everything and anything, relevant and irreverent.

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