Peugeot and Citroen cut electric car prices

The Peugeot Ion and Citroen C-Zero electric cars have both had their prices cut by approximately £7,000.

Both models now cost £21,216 after the government's £5,000 grant. The price cuts were pretty well inevitable, as the Peugeot/Citroen twins were the same price as the Nissan Leaf, which was not a viable situation. The Leaf is a family car, whereas the Ion/C-Zero are basically city cars converted to run on batteries.

In fact the "French" models are actually Mitsubishis, made in Japan. That is part of the problem: with the strong yen, Japan is about the last place you would want to be making a small car. The slow start to electric vehicle sales in the UK (even the technologically excellent Leaf only sold 635 units last year), means that Peugeot/Citroen had to either cut prices or leave the market.

Although prices are still fairly high, Peugeot/Citroen are offering monthly rental at £249 per month, which could be affordable to more drivers. In addition, the number of sales outlets is being increased from 11 to 21. Citroen has confirmed it will also be bringing its Berlingo electric van to the UK in 2013, most likely with a Peugeot equivalent.

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