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What Are the Pros (Or Cons) Of Owning An EV? A Singapore EV Owner Shares with Us His Ownership Experience

Owning an EV in Singapore can be a lot more convenient than what most drivers may expect

This article was written in collaboration with LTA. All views expressed in this article are the independent opinion of based on our research. is not liable for any financial losses that may arise from any transactions and readers are encouraged to do their own due diligence. You can view our full editorial policy here.

If you aren’t already in the know, Singapore is shifting away from vehicles with an internal combustion engine (ICE) to those powered by cleaner energy like Electric Vehicles (EVs). Currently, EV charger deployment is progressing towards the target of 60,000 public charging points by 2030. Building on this, as part of the Singapore Green Plan, every HDB town will be an EV-Ready Town by 2025. To support this transition, around 60,000 EV charging points are expected to be installed in Singapore by 2030.

A Singapore car owner who made the switch to an EV is Collin Seow, a familiar name amongst the trading community and the founder of his very own trading system.

To help me better understand what some of the adjustments are when it comes to owning an electric car in Singapore, I spoke to Collin about his EV ownership experience.

Timothy Ho (Timothy): What were the reasons that got you to switch to an electric car?

Collin Seow (Collin): For me, the main reason is that I feel I would be getting a better car and a superior driving experience. In general, EV cars provide seamless and rapid power delivery, with instant torque and zero lag.

It’s an environmentally friendlier option with lesser emissions. At the same time, it’s also a more cost-efficient option for car owners because we not only save on fuel, but also on maintenance costs since EV cars tend to have lesser parts that require regular servicing.

EV cars also offer more space since we not only have a boot, but also a frunk! So that’s practical for a family man like myself.

The Frunk of Collin’s EV contains additional space

The boot of Collin’s EV

Timothy: Let’s talk about the cost savings. How much can you save today with your EV compared to your previous ICE car?

Collin: I drive frequently so a single charge will last me one week. This costs me about $30. In comparison, I used to spend about $150 a week on fuel for my previous car so I save about $120 a week, or about $500 a month.

Maintenance and servicing cost is also lower for EV cars so that also helps us in reducing the cost of ownership over the long term.

Lastly, when I purchased my EV, I was able to tap on government schemes like the EV Early Adoption Incentive (EEAI) and the Enhanced Vehicular Emissions Scheme (VES). So that was useful in reducing the purchase price of the EV compared to what a similar ICE car would have cost.

Timothy: Maintenance is an area that is quite different for EV and ICE car. From your experience as someone who has previously owned ICE cars and now, an EV car, what are some of the key differences when it comes to maintenance matters for each type of vehicle?

Collin: Overall, there are much lesser components in an EV compared to an ICE car. There are no engine components, transmission box, gearbox, fuel system and exhaust systems that may require repair or part replacements to worry about.

Also, regular servicing every 10,000 km to change the oil in the car and the oil filter isn’t needed. This saves me about a few hundred dollars every 6 months or so.

Timothy: Did you have any concerns about switching to an EV car?

Collin: Like most first-time EV owners, I was initially worried that the car would run out of battery when I was driving, but it was an unfounded fear. I have a charger at the development that I stay in and can also access the chargers near the places that I usually frequent. Even if I am in a rush, I can still access fast charging points (DC) that would take about 30 minutes.

At my residential estate’s charging point, it’s an AC charging point that takes about 6 hours so I can leave that overnight to charge.

Collin charging his EV

Timothy: What do you miss about driving an ICE car?

Collin: Maybe it’s missing the sound of the engine running. That said, however, many drivers, including myself, prefer a quiet car, and lots of modern ICE cars pride themselves on being able to offer a quiet ride anyway. For better or worse (mostly better), switching to an ICE car means no longer having to hear the engine noise!

Timothy: Range anxiety is one of the concerns that drivers have when switching to an EV. How did you overcome that?

Collin: If you don’t have access to your own charging point, it’s a good idea to plan where to charge beforehand, and to make charging the car part of your lifestyle. For example, if you go to a certain mall once or twice a week for grocery shopping, or visit your parents on the weekends for dinner, you can make use of the opportunity to charge your car during those periods. On average, a single charge should be able to last us about 300-400km, or about one week for me.

You can also use MyTransport.SG app by LTA to help locate nearby charging points that are available.

Also, don’t leave the battery too low before charging it. Once it hits 20%, you should start charging. There is also no need to charge till 100%, 80% is good enough.

A Different Car Ownership Experience

Having spoken to Collin about his ownership experience, the main thing that struck me was how owning an EV car may require us to develop new habits while unlearning some old ones.

For me, the key difference is having to charge our electric cars at charging points instead of topping up fuel at petrol kiosks.

This requires a change in the things we regularly do. Instead of going to the petrol kiosk whenever our fuel tank is close to being empty, we may prefer to locate charging points near our offices or at the shopping malls that we usually go to. We may also need to know the locations of charging points near our homes so that we can charge overnight when necessary.

And as Collin advised, it’s best not to wait until our battery is close to zero. For Collin, once it hits about 20%, he starts thinking about charging his car. Neither is it necessary to charge it all the way to 100% since charging rates generally slow down once it’s past 80% and always charging to 100% may not be good for the battery in the long run

Be Incentivised when Switching to an EV

In Singapore, incentive schemes like the EV Early Adopter Incentive (EEAI) and the Vehicle Emission Scheme (VES) will help lower the upfront costs of purchasing an EV

For the EEAI, there is a 45 percent rebate off the Additional Registration Fee (ARF), capped at $20,000. And the Enhanced Vehicular Emissions Scheme (VES) provides a rebate of up to $25,000 for cars that qualify for the highest Band A1. This means that in total, EV car owners can get a rebate of up to $45,000. Both the EEAI and VES incentives are valid from now till 31 December 2023,

And since the ARF floor have also been lowered from $5,000 to $0 for fully electric cars and taxis till 31 December 2023, it’s possible that some electric cars in Singapore pay $0 for their ARF.

Besides enjoying a lower upfront cost, in the long-term, owning an EV will also likely be cheaper given that the cost of charging will be significantly lower than topping up fuel for an ICE car. Also, lower maintenance requirements for EV cars should also translate to lower maintenance costs over the lifetime of the car.

While owning an EV car is still very much in its infancy stage in Singapore, there is no doubt this will be the future of driving in Singapore, and the rest of the world. For those of us who are keen to make this environmentally friendly decision to switch to an EV car today, we can take advantage of incentive schemes like the EEAI and the Enhanced VES to reduce the cost of switching to an EV car.

Read Also: EV Charging 101: 7 Things To Know About Charging An EV Car In Singapore