Britain’s Department for Transport (DfT) has launched an app to help drivers see which electric vehicles best suit their lifestyle.

The free app is known as EV8 Switch – backed by GBP2.7m (US$3.2m) of UK Space Agency funding.

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It calculates how much money UK drivers could save by switching to an EV compared to their current petrol or diesel vehicle, along with details on CO2 savings and air quality improvements.

Drivers can also see which electric vehicles would be the most suitable for them based on their current vehicle and how switching to electric could fit their current lifestyle. Those with the app can equally see how close nearest chargepoints are and which journeys can be completed without the need to top-up en-route.

The zero-emission car market in the UK is accelerating quickly with more models coming onto the market and one in seven cars sold this year having a plug.

The government is extending the GBP50m government fund to install EV chargepoints. The move will see small businesses such as B&Bs gain access to the Workplace Charging Scheme, supporting the UK tourism industry and improving access to rural areas.

It will also see those in leasehold and rented accommodation have the benefits of the Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme, encouraging people to make the switch in areas where charging provision is currently more limited and potentially more challenging to secure. ​

“I want to not only provide easy access to the tools people need to feel confident about making the switch, but also to make sure that chargepoints are accessible, affordable and recognisable,” said UK Secretary of State for Transport, Grant Shapps.

“That’s why we have already committed GBP1.3bn to accelerate the roll-out of charging infrastructure up and down the country. And as we look forward to COP26 and beyond, our vision is the UK is at the forefront of the zero-emission transport future, creating thousands of green jobs in the process.”

Together with, the Department for Transport has also produced a Beginners’ Guide to Going Electric (PDF, 2MB), to help drivers understand what is involved in switching to an electric car.

The British government adds Minnie Moll, chief executive of the Design Council and Duncan Wilson, chief executive of Historic England, will sit on the steering board to support the chargepoint design project, alongside architects, Sowmya Parthasarathy and Professor Alan Penn, chief scientific advisor at the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government.