More and more people are interested in an Electric Vehicles (EV’s), but many still have questions.
In 2010, just 1,919 EVs were sold in the U.S. Last year nearly 300, 000 were sold. Around the world, countries are increasingly moving towards car production and ownership that is entirely electric. California will phase out the sale of all gasoline-powered vehicles by 2035.
Ford may change the EV market in America!
Ford’s F-150 truck has been the best selling vehicle in America for more than four decades. In 2020, truck sales outsold passenger cars nearly 2 to 1. A few weeks ago Ford announced they were building a full sized electric pick up. The Ford Lightning. When it goes on sale next summer the base model will start at $42,000.
The top trim Lighting will have nearly 600 horsepower and a range of 3000 miles. In less than a month, Ford has received more than 100,000 orders.
201: I know an Electric Vehicle is all electric. BUT why should I buy one and what should I expect?
Most operate the same as the car your driving. With most EV’s you can enter and operate the vehicle , via your cell phone, including unlocking the doors. Unlike the car your driving, you do not have to warm the vehicle, in some cars you can turn on the defrosters via your cell phone.
The Driving Experience
The first thing you will notice driving an electric car is the instant power from a stop, and they are both smooth and quiet when underway. The driving experience is quite different from a traditional gasoline-fueled car because EVs feel like they glide effortlessly. Electric engines have more torque than convention engines, as a result you can often feel the power pushing you back in your seat.
Most electric vehicles ride comfortably. Despite their heavy batteries, they typically handle well because that battery is positioned low in the vehicle, plus they lack a heavy engine above the front axle.
If you have driven an hybrid car, you know that every time the vehicle coast or when you apply the brakes ,energy is recaptured in the battery where it can be used again In many EV’s, if you place the car in “L” it agressively regenerates energy, as you release the gas pedal the car slows to a stop. Like a hybrid these vehicles excel in stop and go traffic as they return energy to the battery.
Where they differ? (Ev’s vs Dino Vehicles)
Battery electric vehicles have fewer components than a plug-in hybrid or an internal combustion engine vehicle, so they often have lower maintenance costs because they don’t require fluid changes or tune ups. An analysis of Ev’s completed by Consumer Reports experts earlier this year found that EVs generally cost less to own over the long run than their equivalent gasoline-powered counterparts.
Charging and Charging Stations
Electric cars have been on the road for some time. The Nissan Leaf went on sale back in 2010. In 2010, the Leaf had a range of 75 miles . For most owners this wasn’t an issue as the majority of the owners charged their Nissan’s at home. The majority of Ev owners will charge their vehicles at home. Chargers can be purchased at auto stories ,Amazon and Ebay. Most of these can be programed to charge your EV late at night the the electricity rate are lower.
The fueling of a dino car can range from five to fifteen minutes. In an EV, charging can range from twenty minutes to ninety minutes. The newer cars have a faster charging rates. Ford say’s the Mach E at a fast charger can charge the battery from 10% to 80% in 38 minutes. For comparison, my 2018, Chevy Bolt needed 80 minutes to charge from 10% to 80%
The other issue is the availability of charging stations, in California there are nearly thirteen thousand charging locations, however in the second most populous and second largest state (land) Texas has less than three thousand. This could be an issue for someone who frequently drive interstate or long distances. There are hundreds of new fast charging stations, coming online weekly as more people go electric.
The other issue is range, most EV have a range of more than 200 miles. However there are a few Ev’s with an electric range of less than 150 miles. Tesla’s Model S has a range of 400 miles. 250 is adequate for most drivers.
Cold Weather (Especially if you live in an area where the temperture drops below 30 degrees)
All vehicles, whether they run on gas or kilowatts, become less energy-efficient in cold weather. The typical internal combustion engine vehicle can see its gas mileage drop by around 20 percent in the cold, and this effect tends to be more pronounced with electric cars. Cold temperatures can substantially hamper both a battery’s performance and its ability to accept a charge.
A study conducted by the AAA found that when the mercury dips to 20°F and the heater is in use, an electric car’s operating range will drop by an average of 41 percent. That means if you own a Nissan Leaf, that’s otherwise rated to run for 150 miles on a charge, you’d likely only be drive for around 88 miles before having to plug it in. You’ll also find it takes longer to bring the vehicle’s battery pack up to a full charge. Frigid temperatures also limit an electric car’s regenerative braking function, which recovers energy that would otherwise be lost during decelerating or stopping and sends it back to the battery.
While gasoline engines generate large amounts of heat that can be harvested to warm a car’s interior, an electric car’s climate control system relies solely on battery power to accomplish this function and the battery drains quicker whenever the heat is on. Some newer model EV have heat pumps, the heat pump maximizes the distance that EVs can travel on a single charge by scavenging waste heat to warm the cabin.
Why are EV’s so expensive?
The battery is the most expensive part on the EV. Most automakers are taking Tesla lead by first building expensive luxury EV’s. GM next EV, the GMC Hummer will be released this fall. The first models will cost $100,000
In 2015, Tesla said the prices for 2018 Model 3 would begin at $35,000. Today the Model 3 with a range of 263 miles starts at $40,000. The price 2017 Chevy Bolt was $37,000. Today you can purchase an 2021 Bolt with a range of 259 miles for 25,000.
China is by far the largest EV market. The best selling EV,is the Hong Guang Mini EV. This Ev is a joint venture with the state-owened SAIC Motor and General Motors The Hong Guang Mini, has a range of 75 miles and a top speed of 62 miles per hour. The tiny car will seat 4 and cost $5000 with air conditioning. The Mini is currently the second best selling in the world after Tesla’s model 3. One could see these vehicles in America’s most densely populated cities. New York, Boston, San Francisco and DC. SAIC plans to export these cars.
Base prices start around $30,000 for the Chevy Bolt, Hyundai Ioniq and Nissan Leaf. From there, prices run the gamut and span into six figures for some European and the Tesla Model S and Model X.
Many electric cars are eligible for up to a $7,500 federal tax credit to help offset the extra cost. Under current rules, once an automaker sells 200,000 electric cars, the value of the tax credit decreases and eventually fades away. So far, this has affected only two automakers, General Motors and Tesla. However, that doesn’t apply to city and state tax credits, rebates, or vouchers are available in California, Colorado, New York, Texas, and elsewhere; these can make the costs of electric cars more compelling and competitive with the price of non-EVs. In Sacramento, the public utility offers a rebate and there are other rebates available. Consumers with a home solar system can really lower or even eliminate their energy costs.
It pays to do your homework and look beyond the sticker price to find out how much you’d be paying after state, federal, and local incentives, as well as local lease offers. You may be surprised to find that some EVs are more affordable than you think.
Micro Review: Ford Mustang Mach E
After much whining, and a local Ford dealer allowed me to drive a Mach E with a chaperone for five very brief minutes. Brief impression, quick, solid, a little quirky and heavy. The room was adequate for my ginormous body, unlike the Tesla, most of the controls are where they are normally and in the brief time I drove it got a few thumbs up.
As of June 1, The Mach E outsold the regular Mustang.
So should I buy an electric vehicle? (Today)
There are many factors to consider before buying an Electric Vehicle.
A perfect candidated for an EV is someone who lives in a metro area and owns her own home. Should they need to charge their car, charging stations would be plentiful. They can charge their EV at home and use it to commute to work. This person would see major savings in first year.
Someone who lives in a rural area and commutes to work an EV could be incovenient as their are fewer chargers available should his EV needs charging. If he want to reduce fuel cost he might consider a plug in or regular hybrid. Ford has an hybrid verson of its popular F-150 truck. Hybrid Suv’s are available from Toyota, Hyundai and Kia.
If your the person who wants an EV, but the price is too steep. Consider a used EV. Old Nissan Leafs with a range of 100 miles are selling for less than 5000. Used Chevy Bolts with a range of 200 to 250 miles are selling between 14 to 17 thousand dolllars. Most automakers insure the batteries for 100,000 miles.
Before you purchase a new EV, research what local, state, city, utlitity discounts, rebates are available.