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Skoda says EVs are more about lifecycle cost than upfront sticker price


Skoda Australia’s brand director told Chasing Cars that owning an EV is all about the lifecycle costs, not just the upfront investment 

Skoda Australia brand director Michael Irmer says that EV ownership is not just about the upfront purchase price, but the entire lifecycle cost of the vehicle.

“In a BEV, what you have is high upfront costs. And you will have higher upfront costs when compared to a comparable ICE engine car.

“What is very important to make our customers understand: the car is not, say, $10,000 or $20,000 more expensive for you. It’s actually really only $3000 or $4000 more expensive”.

2023 Skoda Enyaq RS iV rear 3/4
The Skoda Enyaq electric SUV is getting closer to an Australian release

“For that, you need to understand the total cost of ownership. So for that, we are currently investigating in ways how we convey this to customers”. 

“You can buy a $3000 leather pack, why don’t you want to buy $3000 for the future?” Irmer said. 

An electric car benefits from having no long-term fuel costs, cheaper servicing (at longer intervals) and long standard battery warranties – just to name a few. 

Skoda Kodiaq Sportline 2023 rear low
Total cost of ownership for an EV is often lower than a combustion model

Skoda in the United Kingdom says that you should have your Enyaq EV serviced and checked every two years, but for the UK, it is not dependent on mileage or kilometres driven. 

The overseas UK site for Skoda also displays a cost of ownership section, and says that for an Enyaq driven 15,000km a year and that is owned for five years, the total cost of an Enyaq over that period will be EUR 35,551 (AUD$56,980), or EUR 13,877 (AUD$22,242) cheaper than a similarly specified Skoda Kodiaq Sportline. 

It’s worth noting that Tesla has enabled a cost savings comparison on their website for some time. 

2023 Tesla Model X rear driving
Tesla offers cost savings comparisons on their website

EV makers should help educate customers, says Skoda

Skoda Australia knows that a lot of the knowledge surrounding electric vehicles is unlikely to come just from the government, and instead can come from car manufacturers themselves. 

Skoda’s Michael Irmer told Chasing Cars that the whole industry has to educate Australia’s customer base. 

Volvo C40 2023 review charging
Skoda says automakers and the wider industry should inform buyers about EVs

“Australia is better suited than almost any other country in the world for e-mobility … we shouldn’t underestimate the amount of willingness of innovation and adaptation to technology in Australia,” he said. 

“It might be starting a little sluggish, but we might catch up and overtake some countries [in terms of EV adoption and infrastructure locally]”. 

Skoda’s wave of EVs will begin in Australia with the Enyaq, an MEB-based SUV that will come locally in either SUV and coupe body styles and will arrive in 2024.

The Skoda Enyaq is set to arrive in Australia in 2024

Not all people drive long distances, with or without an EV 

Irmer makes a valid point that Australia has core travel hubs with less roads than places such as Europe. 

While countries such as Europe have extensive road networks, Australia is much more simplified, with major hubs and charging routes across greater distances. 

Irmer says that when people do decide to travel long distances, they do so by flying for a majority of instances. 

2022 Skoda Enyaq Coupe iV rear shot driving down road high angle
Not all people drive long distances in Australia

“Most people actually fly vast distances and don’t even bother driving. The reality is eight or nine times [out of ten], you fly”. 

Many Australians may be worried about electric range and long distances with an electric vehicle, but Skoda’s Michael Irmer doesn’t think this will be such an issue. 

A study by Budget Direct in 2022 found that Australians typically drove around 12,100km a year, but drove more than 14,000km a year more than a decade ago.