An electric ID.7 being driven down a city street

Maintenance of electric cars

Regular maintenance of an electric car is necessary but is usually simpler than for combustion engine vehicles. When servicing an electric car fewer components need to be checked than with conventional cars and only trained operatives may carry out the work.

Maintenance of electric cars: fewer wear parts, long lifetime

The purchase price plays a major role when buying a car. But you also need to consider the maintenance costs. Anyone wanting to drive an electric car, like the ID.3, ID.4 or ID.5, can take advantage of savings on on car tax1 and charge the car from home with energy more cheaply than refuelling at a conventional filling station. And proper maintenance can also generally saves money. Although it needs doing as often as with combustion engine cars.

A regular service is also essential with electric mobility for several reasons. It reduces the risk of a defect in the car and occasionally helps to identify faults. It is also an opportunity to replace worn parts before they break down, potentially resulting in more expensive repairs. For instance, if you wait too long before replacing a worn brake lining, you could quickly end up replacing a brake disc.

Electric cars are considerably less susceptible to faults than combustion engine cars as they have fewer wear parts.

A major benefit of electric cars: they simply have fewer worn parts than petrol and diesel cars, and are considered to have an extremely long service life. No spark plugs need to be replaced, no oil changed, no exhaust replaced. And there are simply no vulnerable components, such as cam belts or clutches. Electric motors and drives are simple and robust. The transmission has a fixed gear ratio with a single gear and is therefore very small. It has significantly fewer parts compared to manual and automatic gearboxes.

A serviceman beside a VW car
ID.3: power consumption in kWh/100 km: 14.0–12.9 (combined); CO2 emissions in g/km: 0; efficiency class: A­+.
Electric cars are generally easier to maintain than vehicles with combustion engines.
Electric vehicle maintenance

Maintenance of electric vehicles is often easier than for combustion engine cars

Differences can occur depending on the model, and special individual parts can sometimes be expensive. However, electric cars are generally easier to maintain than vehicles with combustion engines.

But what needs to be maintained with an electric car? As with all vehicles, the service includes the electrics, motor, gear, chassis and body. The windscreen wiper blades are replaced as required and cleaning the air conditioning system ensures good air quality inside the vehicle.

However, there are also some special features involved in the servicing of electric vehicles. For instance, coolant and brake and wiper fluids are the main fluids found in an electric car, considerably fewer than in a diesel or petrol car. Of course, they also need to be regularly checked and, if necessary, topped up. The transmission fluid also needs to be checked on the few models with a transmission.

Regenerative braking protects brake pads

Another difference from combustion engine cars is that the brake pads wear less. Most electric cars are initially braked by recuperation, with the motor becoming a generator and the braking torque generated by electromagnetic resistance. Conventional braking is only added when necessary. This helps to protect the brake pads in the electric vehicle. However, bear in mind that they may be subject to rust due to their infrequent use.

ID.4 GTX: power consumption (combined) 17.4 kWh/100 km; CO2 emissions in g/km: 0; efficiency class: A­+

The brakes of electric cars are used less due to recuperation.

Close-up of a VW wheel
Batteries need replacing very rarely. The lithium-ion batteries are designed for 1,000 to 3,000 charging cycles.
Battery care data

High torque can take a lot out of tyres

The tyres on electric cars are probably likely to have the highest wear. They are usually relatively narrow to minimise rolling resistance and are exposed to high wear and tear. After all, the electric drive transfers practically its full torque to the asphalt at every speed. However, rapid wear can be prevented by starting out gently and driving in an aware manner in traffic.

The most expensive component in an electric car also needs to be treated with care: the battery. The charging connection, chargers, cable connections and the condition of the battery itself are checked during a service. However, batteries need replacing very rarely. The lithium-ion batteries are designed for 1,000 to 3,000 charging cycles. Manufacturers usually offer a guarantee that the usable capacity of the batteries will not fall below a defined level after a certain number of years or a certain mileage. At Volkswagen, this figure is 70% when used correctly for eight years (or up to 160,000 kilometres driven, whichever comes first).4

How to make batteries last longer

You can influence to a certain extent how quickly the batteries actually wear. Avoid extreme charging levels. It's much better to keep the charge between 20 and 80%. The battery doesn't like extreme temperatures either. And if you want to be nice to your electric car, invest in a trickle charger. With this, your car draws electricity relatively slowly – usually overnight – with an output of 3.5 kW from a normal household socket or a domestic wallbox that produces a maximum of 11 kW. This takes longer but is much gentler on the battery than fast charging with a higher current.

Electric cars need to be serviced at similar intervals to vehicles with a combustion engine. A mandatory service for ID. models is required every two years, regardless of mileage. The Service interval display in the infotainment system will indicate when the next service is due.

Red VW ID.5 GTX
ID.4 GTX: power consumption (combined) 17.4 kWh/100 km; CO2 emissions in g/km: 0; efficiency class: A­+
The brakes of electric cars are used less due to recuperation
In principle, you don't need to visit a special workshop to service an electric car.
Maintenance guidance

Electric mobility: maintenance only by trained personnel

In principle, you don't need to visit a special workshop to service an electric car, providing the manufacturer's specifications are adhered to. However, the vehicle cannot be handled by just anybody. Even a tyre change needs to be done by a qualified electrician. However, if the high-voltage battery does need to be opened – Volkswagen insists that the vehicle is booked into one of its high-voltage service centres, to prevent the warranty from being invalidated.

Next steps

Configure an ID.3

Our pure electric cars

Meet the ID.3 owners: Simon

Next steps

Important information :

^If you are selecting a Volkswagen ID.3, ID.4, ID.5 or ID.7 then prices shown are the MDP (Manufacturer's Direct Price).  This is the price set by Volkswagen which you pay for the vehicle.  Volkswagen ID vehicles are sold by Volkswagen UK, a trading division of Volkswagen Group United Kingdom Limited (please note that you will need to visit an authorised Volkswagen Retailer (acting as agent for Volkswagen UK) to order, purchase and take delivery of your Volkswagen ID vehicle).  The MDP includes delivery to an authorised Volkswagen Retailer (acting as agent for Volkswagen UK), number plates, new vehicle registration fee, the first year's Vehicle Excise Duty and VAT (calculated at 20%).  You can find out more about the Volkswagen model for selling ID vehicles by clicking https://www.volkswagen.co.uk/en/legal/mdp-explained.html.

If you are selecting any other Volkswagen vehicle (excluding the Volkswagen ID.3, ID.4, ID.5 and ID.7) then prices listed are Manufacturer’s ‘On the road’ Recommended Retail Price. Actual prices are set by Volkswagen authorised retailers in their sole discretion – always obtain these prices from your chosen Volkswagen Retailer.  Recommended On-The-Road (OTR) retail prices include: delivery charge, number plates, new vehicle registration fee, the first year's Vehicle Excise Duty and VAT (calculated at 20%). 

Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information above. Prices are taken from the Volkswagen website - this website contains a large number of products and it is always possible that, despite our best efforts, some of the products listed may be incorrectly priced. Volkswagen may change prices at any time (this includes where there are government changes in regulation and/or legislation). There may be a delay to any price displaying correctly on our materials and it is always possible that, despite our best efforts, some vehicles may be incorrectly priced. Always check prices with your local retailer.

For fuel consumption and CO2 information for vehicles, view values in the configurator.

Please be advised we may not be able to provide valuations for vehicles which are outside certain age or mileage ranges, specialist or customised, or not registered in the UK. The actual sale price is dependent on a number of additional factors, which you can discuss further with your retailer. T&Cs will apply.