UK Government Report: The Automobile Industry Does Not Know How to Repair EV Batteries


by Eric Worrall at

Even minor accidents often lead to a £14,200 – £29,500 battery write-off.

Electric vehicle repair costs revealed versus ICE equivalent

05/07/2023 in Electric fleet news

The research, published by Thatcham Research and funded by the Government’s innovation agency, Innovate UK, highlights the technical and practical differences between battery electric vehicle (BEVs) and internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicle insurance claims processes.

Thatcham Research’s data-driven modelling shows that in 2022, 9,400 vehicles were potentially involved in collisions resulting in battery inclusion in the repair. This is estimated to reach up to 260,000 vehicles annually by 2035.

Adrian Watson, head of engineering research, Thatcham Research, said: “Without meaningful change, there is a strong likelihood that claims costs will continue to rise disproportionally.

“Much of the motor insurance industry is yet to adapt to mass BEV adoption challenges, and the implications remain unquantified on repair capacity, training and skills, cost, and the lifetime sustainability of BEVs.

“This lack of awareness means many BEVs are often deemed irreparable, leading to premature write-offs because of high battery cost and the lack of value the UK ecosystem can recover from them.”

Currently, the cost of a replacement HV battery is causing a significant increase in the risk of ‘total loss’ or write-offs.

The cost of HV batteries varies widely from high-end vehicles, currently costing £29,500, to the low-end costing £14,200.

If the vehicle cannot be safely stored at the repair centre there will be further costs associated with transportation to and from an alternative location, storage at the alternative location, along with a longer duration of hire vehicle.
A video explanation from Geoff Buys Cars;
The report is available here.

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