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Could parents power the UK’s EV growth? New report reveals 5.8 million parents are put off electric vehicles as sales slow

‘Nano-documentary’ report unplugs parents EV concerns but explains why going electric could be the right choice for them

DadDownload Lee and Hilary couple on sofa talking about electric vehicles
  • Admiral examines EV misconceptions as seven out of ten parents (71%) are still deterred from moving to electric
  • I would be worried about running out of charge and getting stuck somewhere!”: Admiral spoke to parents across the country and found two in five (41%) fear charge running out on the school run or family days out
  • EVs can charge up more than A DAY of average mileage in the time it takes to help the kids with their homework and give them a bath
  • "Infrastructure can’t meet demand”: one in three (36%) parents are concerned over charge point availability – despite many EV owners charging their cars at home
  • Admiral’s EV report produced with ‘InstaDad’ listens to UK parents’ EV worries and separates facts from the fiction

A new nano-documentary style report released today by Admiral Car Insurance suggests there could be an untapped EV market of mums and dads as many parents remain sceptical about the family-friendly benefits of electric vehicles.

With private sales of EVs down compared to last year, the insurer found that 5.8 million parents - that's almost three in four (71%), have no immediate plans to buy an EV, citing misleading beliefs or misconceptions around cost, charging and range as reasons for not going electric.

The report is based on national research of 2,000 UK parents and guardians – a significant demographic for the car industry – to understand why uptake among the group is so low.

The nano-documentary is fronted by EV-owning ‘InstaDad’, @DadDownload, who explores why many families are holding back from the switch to EVs and sets the record straight on some of their concerns with his own experience.

THE MYTH: “I may have to stop longer to charge it...filling up with petrol is quick”

The parents from Admiral’s EV research panel expressed worries about the time it would take to charge. They said, “If going on a long journey I may have to have a longer stop to charge it...filling up with petrol is really quick” and “Where can I charge the car? How long does it take to charge?”

Overall, two in five (37%) parents are put off EVs because of the time it takes to charge.


Although a full charge can take between six and eight hours with a home charger, this can be done overnight whilst the family sleeps, much like charging a mobile phone, saving on trips to the petrol station.

In the time it takes parents to help their kids with their homework and bath them (42 minutes according to Admiral’s research), parents will be able to a charge their cars up for more an entire day.

Across the week this would amount to 262.5 miles of range – enough for 15 days of driving based on the average person’s journey of 17 miles per day. This is based on a home charger adding an average of 30 miles of range per hour.

Based on the time parents told Admiral they spent on other parenting tasks, the number of ‘parenting miles’ of range they could add if they ‘topped up’ their electric vehicle during these tasks is as follows:



Time taken (per day)

Number of ‘parenting miles’ added during this time

Tidying up after kids

25 minutes

12.5 miles

Kids bath time

21 minutes

10 miles

Helping kids with homework

21 minutes

10.5 miles

Planning family meals

20 minutes

10 miles

Planning playdates and days out

19 minutes

9 miles


THE MYTH: “Electric car charge time doesn’t last very long, we won’t be able to get to places”

Parents across the country voiced their concern about running out of charge - one parent from Aberdeen said, “Electric car charge time doesn’t last very long, we won’t be able to get to places.” Whilst another from Lancashire added, “Imagine it's snowing, a child in the back and no range!”.

This is reflected in Admiral’s research with two in five (41%) parents worried about running out of charge with their children as passengers.


The report highlights that there is more chance of parents’ personal energy levels running out of social battery on a family day out, as a full charge would provide a typical range of 220 ‘parenting miles’. This equates to over 40 local five-mile journeys; such as the school run, trip to the shops, or dropping the kids off at a club or activity, or the equivalent of almost two weeks of driving.

MYTH: "There are not enough chargers!”

Parents from the Admiral panel also voiced concerns about the charging infrastructure with one dad from Greater London saying, “The charging infrastructure in the country is not able to meet demand”, whilst a mum from Southampton added, “I would worry about not being able to get a charger or being stuck at one for a long time with the children.”

In fact, over a third of parents are worried about the availability of charging points when out with the kids (36%).


The report highlights that there are now more charging locations than petrol stations in the UK - a total of 57,000 chargers in 32,000 locations and continues to grow - in 2023 the pace of monthly charge point installations increased by 89% compared to 2022. Additionally, an estimated 80% of charging takes place at home, so it’s rare that parents will need to plug in while they’re out and about.

THE MYTH: “It’s expensive now!”

Comments from the Admiral parent’s panel reflect common cost concerns from parents.  A mum from Fife saying, “The price of a new electric car might be expensive.” And another from Aberdeen added, “Electric is cleaner and the future, so it makes sense to use it, but it’s expensive now.”

Admiral found nearly half of parents (49%) are put off choosing an EV for a family car due to the initial purchase cost. Furthermore, a third of parents (29%) are concerned about the running costs.


As the report highlights, the choice of models across different price points is growing. Drivers on a budget can pick up a small second-hand family EV for around £5,000. There is good news on the horizon with predictions of lower manufacturing costs beginning to translate to lower EV prices from 2027.

When it comes to charging costs, there are benefits from charging at home. It is estimated that around 80% of EV drivers have a home charger and with special energy tariffs available and prices as low as 7p per kWh this is a plus for parents who charge the car at home.

Put into context, an EV driver who does 80% of charging at home, will see annual average journey costs of £680 versus £1,470 for an equivalent petrol or diesel car.

Added to this, there are benefits when it comes to the running costs as EV drivers currently don’t pay road tax, saving up to £695 for high-emissions vehicles registered before March 2017 and up to £2,605 for new high emissions vehicles, and there are lower charges for clean air zones around the country. EV drivers without a driveway could also make savings down the line due to the recent Government announcement that the EV charge point grant will expand to owners who do not have a driveway or off-street parking at home.

Clare Egan, Head of Motor Product for Admiral Insurance comments: “It’s understandable why busy parents may think choosing an EV as their family car isn’t right for them. Fears have been fuelled by misinformation for too long – like the worry of running out of charge on the motorway with three kids in the back or the idea of being low on charge when they get an urgent phone call from the school.

“The reality is that range, charging and costs benefits have come a long way in the last few years – you only need to speak to families who already own EVs for proof of that.

“There is work to be done to help doubtful parents cut through the mass of information and sort the facts from fiction – exactly what our report aims to do. An EV isn’t going to be right for every lifestyle just yet, but it seems that many parents have been put off them unnecessarily. All electric cars can be ideal for families and they don’t release any direct emissions, which contribute to air quality.

“At Admiral, we know that peace of mind is extremely important, so our comprehensive policies (excluding Essential tier) has benefits specific for EV drivers including cover for batteries, charging equipment and wall boxes and out of charge recovery to give parents one less thing to worry about.”

Dan Caesar, CEO of the Fully Charged Show, which runs the Everything Electric exhibitions around the world comments: “As this research from Admiral reflects, worries about charging and cost are common concerns we hear from many drivers who have never owned an EV. Many of these concerns are now outdated, which is a worry as parent drivers are a huge untapped market.

“As well as the environmental benefits, EVs have many family-friendly pluses - being able to charge your car at home is a major bonus for busy parents. For those parents worried about charging when out with the kids, not only has there been impressive growth in charge point installations, but there is also strong growth in ultra-rapid chargers and in charging hubs with six or more devices.  Most charge points aren’t in constant use which is reassuring to those parents worried about queuing for chargers or long charging times when out and about.”

Admiral is one of the largest insurer of EVs in the UK and its motor insurance policies provide specific benefits for EV owners including cover for charging equipment and wall boxes, battery and out of charge recovery. Admiral is insurance partner for the Everything Electric Shows which take place around the UK.