Sean O'Grady: When there's no vroom, vroom, it makes it all seem a bit ho-hum

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Indy Lifestyle Online

The trouble with electric cars is that they just don't feel right to drive. There's no involvement. No passion. No fun. Usually, they are ugly, slow and unsafe. And they will never emit the sonorous symphony of burbles and grunts of a proper V8. If you love cars, you will be disappointed. Leccy cars just, well, go sluggishly, silently and rather boringly. And not very far.

For all the talk about hi-tech batteries and 100-mile ranges, even the most advanced electric car today is inferior in practicality, cost and performance to the humblest little hatch with an internal combustion engine. Even in green terms they're not much better than the cleanest diesels.

There are, admittedly, a few electric sports cars around, such as the well-publicised Tesla, that deliver thrilling performance – at the enormous cost of about £80,000 a pop. Even the otherwise hopeless G-Wiz will deliver impressive performance – to about 20mph. That's because electric motors deliver excellent low-down power, or "torque", but they soon run out of puff.

By and large, electric cars are a sterile, numbing, depressing experience, and the best that can be said about them is that the more people who don't care about cars go ahead and drive them, the more petrol will be left for the rest of us. If Renault and partner Nissan manage to deliver electric cars that are both green and great fun, well, that really would be an electric shock.

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