Although cars have long been an important part of our civilization, there have been many advances since the Model T in both technology and comfort. As we look to the future, there is no question that electric vehicles will play a huge part in the evolution of this modern-day staple. Although it may seem like electric vehicles are part of some far-off reality, the truth is that electric vehicles are a viable option in today’s automobile market. There are many great vehicles to buy electric for your next vehicle purchase.
The benefits include saving money on gas plus driving a vehicle that’s better for the environment and for these reasons, hybrid electric vehicles have seen a lot of success in the market. Of course, there are still some obstacles to electric vehicle ownership, but with careful consideration and planning, having one does not have to be a burden.
Still on the fence about whether or not a hybrid electric vehicle would be right for you? Here are some of the many benefits that you can expect when you go electric:
Buying and driving an electric vehicle will save you a lot of money as it will reduce or eliminate the cost of fuel (depending on whether you choose a hybrid electric vehicle or an all-electric vehicle). Electricity is generally more available and the price is very stable compared to the price of gasoline.
In a study conducted in 2018 by the University of Michigan, researchers investigated the total cost of operating an electric vehicle over the course of a year. The study identified that electric vehicles cost less than half of the total cost of operating a gasoline-driven car in the same time period. The average total cost to operate an electric vehicle is about $485 per year compared to $1,117 which is spent to operate conventional combustible (gasoline) vehicles.
Electric vehicles are also much cheaper to maintain, since they have fewer parts that will need replacing. For example, electric vehicles don’t have exhaust systems, starter motors, fuel injection systems, radiator parts, etc. Their brakes wear out (and need replacement) less often too, because of regenerative braking (a design that converts the energy exerted in braking into electricity to run the car by running the electric motor in reverse mode).
Save the environment
The introduction of EVs is one of the solutions to eliminate or reduce environmental pollution and promote air quality. One of the biggest advantages of choosing to drive electric vehicles over driving the conventional internal combustion engine vehicle is that it will reduce the emission of carbon and other toxic gases that contribute to climate change, since EVs do not have any tailpipe emissions. This will improve public health and reduce ecological damage. The use of electronic vehicles also eliminates noise pollution because EVs produce little or no noise compared to gasoline vehicles.
Although reducing pollution is certainly the most well known environmental benefit provided by electric vehicles, it is not the only one. Many manufacturers have begun using recycled materials in the production of their electric vehicles to further reduce their environmental impact. Most of the new model electric cars use recyclable materials such as plastic, paper, metals, textiles, etc. to manufacture their interior parts. For example, the electric BMW I3 has an interior made of recycled plastics and renewable materials.
They are Cool
Electric vehicles are sleek in design and have all the bells and whistles available in their combustible engine counterparts. Digital connections are available to connect your smartphone to give your car the ultimate digital experience. Some of the new models have some cool and amazing features such as:
- Smartphone/keycard unlocking
- Central touchscreen which you can find on the dash is a central command for controlling every non-driving function
Common objections to buying an electric vehicle
Making the switch from combustible engine vehicles to electric vehicles is a big change for most consumers and can come with its objections. Here are the most common things we hear from people who are not sure if electric vehicles are right for their lifestyle:
“I have a long commute”
It’s true - the original models of electric vehicles were not designed to take you far without needing to be charged for very long hours. This was a major drawback to most drivers as consumers need to be able to rely on their vehicle to be ready to hit the road when they needed it.
Manufacturers have spent a significant amount of time and research money to improve their designs to cover further distances before requiring a re-charge. Still, EVs can only cover an average of 80 – 100 miles before they need to charge.
However, most people drive 40 miles or less per day. This leaves plenty of charge left to get home even if you need to make an unexpected trip to the grocery store after work. Once you’re home, you can plug your car in and charge it up for the next day’s journey.
“I won’t be able to take cross country road trips”
For longer journeys, planning a cross country road trip requires a bit more planning than with a traditional vehicle since there are a limited number of public charging stations. We are so used to being able to fill up our gas tanks on any corner at the local gas station but since electric vehicles are a recent breakthrough in the commercial market there are not many options to charge these vehicles away from home.
This is where hybrid electric vehicles come in. They offer the same benefits of electric vehicles but also have an internal combustion engine that uses gasoline. As electric vehicles gain popularity more and more enter the market, there will be an increase in the number of charging stations and you’ll be able to get even more benefit out of your car.
“Electric vehicles are too expensive”
The upfront purchase cost of an electric cars higher than for the equivalent gas-powered car. The biggest cost of manufacturing an electric vehicle is the battery since these vehicles do not use an engine which is typically the most expensive part of a conventional gasoline car. As the year goes by and manufacturers keep investing in research and producing more refined batteries, the price will come down.
However, beyond the upfront cost of purchasing the vehicle, the ongoing maintenance and fuel costs are actually lower. As we mentioned before, consumers can expect to save money fueling up with electricity rather than gasoline.
There may be tax credits or incentive programs available in your state/city
To incentivize people to buy electric cars, the US federal government offers a $7500 tax credit per new electric vehicle purchased. Many states offer additional incentives for buying too. Some incentives offered include vehicle registration fee reduction, special low-cost charging rates, additional tax credits and infrastructure incentives - for the installation of charging stations.
Buying an Electric Vehicle
If you’re buying new, there are a wide variety of electric vehicles available through nearly every car manufacturer on the market. Check out the top ten most fuel-efficient cars that we recommend.
If you are buying used, we suggest a specialist in hybrid/electric vehicles – such as The Hybrid Shop – to inspect the vehicle before you purchase. You’ll want to make sure that the vehicle is in good quality and that you understand the warranty of the car before you buy.
Owning an electric vehicle does not have to be an earth-shattering lifestyle change. By considering several important factors as discussed here, you can take the steps necessary to own one and live a more environmentally friendly life.