I HAVE some advice for anyone thinking of buying an electric car - forget it and buy a high economy diesel car such as the recently introduced Skoda Fabia Greenline II hatch or estate writes Bryan Longworth.
For until batteries for electric cars are improved to provide a higher mileage range they are not suitable for the majority of motorists and they are also very expensive.
Much better to get something like the Fabia Greenline II hatch I have just been testing which will provide over 83mpg or 932 miles on a tank of diesel which will take you from London to the Skoda factory near Prague.
And not only that this particular Skoda is also exempt from road tax and congestion charges which makes it even more of a better buy for motorists wanting high economy and lower running costs.
The test car which cost £13,685, was powered by 1.2-litre TDI diesel engine pushing out 75bhp using a five speed manual transmission to drive the front wheels.
The engine provided a top speed of 107mph, a zero to 62mph time of 14.2 seconds and CO2 emissions of just 89g/km.
It incorporates a host of fuel saving technologies including stop/start which automatically stops the engine when the car is stationary, energy recovery when the brakes are applied, lowered chassis and low rolling resistance tyres.
The engine has three cylinders and is the cleanest and most fuel efficient powerplant ever offered in a Fabia which makes it a must buy for owners in particular who regularly do high mileages - it was also the smoothest three pot engine I have driven.
Fabia recently had a facelift which improved the exterior giving it more street appeal and the interior has nice user friendly instruments with the speedometer especially being easy to see in all light conditions.
The level of standard equipment was good and included cruise control, trip computer, tinted windscreen, tyre pressure monitor and hill hold control.
Handling and steering were impressive although I found the ride on the firm side especially over poorly maintained roads and the boot was quite roomy wasily swallowing up the large bags of some youngsters I took to school.
As I said earlier this is the sort of car that makes electric cars look expensive and unnecessary until batteries are improved and this car with its massive range is only just over half as much as cars like the electric Nissan Leaf.
My Verdict: I can see now why Skoda owners are said to be happy drivers!
Model: Skoda Fabia Greenline II Hatch.
Engine: 2.0-litre three cylinder diesel.
Transmission: Five speed manual.
Top speed: 107mph.
Acceleration: 0 to 62mph 14.2 seconds.
Fuel consumption: 83.1mpg.
CO2 emissions: 89g/km.