Are you curious about electric cars and want to find out more? Electric cars are becoming increasingly popular as an environmentally-friendly alternative to using fuel on the roads. And with a range of benefits to suit our ever-evolving lifestyles, an electric car might just be on your next ‘to purchase’ list.
Electric cars come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, some with more technological advancements than others. Some EVs (or Electronic Vehicles) use both petrol and electric charge, while some run purely on electronic charge and others run on battery power. Whichever breed of EV you decide on, each comes with a range of pros and cons, just like petrol run cars.
Is it cheaper?
Fuel will be your biggest saving
Petrol is becoming more expensive, and the price isn’t showing any sign of coming back down. Some breeds of electric car (like the Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles and Battery Electric Vehicles) don’t rely on any fuel to get them around, which means you’ll be making huge savings every week. The energy needed to charge your EV is ⅓ of the cost to buy a litre of petrol, meaning you’ll be able to pay off your new vehicle faster using the savings alone.
Reduced carbon footprint
In comparison to the use of petrol that produces carbon emissions and leads directly to the disintegration of the ozone layer, EVs don’t produce ANY exhaust emissions. Plus, if you use renewable energy like solar to charge your car, you’re reducing your greenhouse footprint even further. In addition to being better for the environment, many models of EVs are made from recycled materials themselves.
On a national level, Australians who drive electric vehicles directly help with Australia’s energy security. Australia relies heavily on other countries to import petrol, whilst EVs can be run on local renewable sources that contribute to reducing our dependence on foreign oil and increasing local jobs through Australian energy companies.
One of the biggest perks for the owners of electric vehicles is the amount of money they save on a weekly basis. Not only are they cheaper to run and charge (as previously touched on), but EVs don’t require as much maintenance as a traditional fuel-run car. With a lot less moving parts and no expensive exhaust systems, you’ll only need to replace your battery every eight years and breakdowns will be a worry of the past. Say goodbye to those expensive mechanic bills forever due to no car service costs! This could be particularly important for seniors, who would benefit from the cost-savings and ease of use of EVs – thankfully, 70.6% of seniors feel comfortable adopting new technology like EVs.
Cons of electric car
It’s important to remember that despite their wonderful perks, EVs do have some disadvantages. Electric vehicles have less power than a traditional car, and finding a charging station can be difficult. If you happen to find one, it can take up to three hours for your car to fully charge, which means you could be stuck in the middle of nowhere for some time. Electric cars may struggle to get up steep hills, and may not have as high a maximum top speed, which can take some getting used to.
The battery pack for your EV weighs up to 450kg, making your car quite heavy. All that weight puts extra pressure on the batteries, meaning they can drain more quickly over time. The sheer weight also means you have reduced power when driving, and adjusting to the way your car moves can take a little bit longer.
They can be expensive
While they do save you money in the long run, the initial cost for an EV can be expensive, and so can their battery replacements. The cost of the car themselves isn’t surprising, however, maintenance on the battery could cost in the thousands of dollars. Should your battery burn out faster than the average eight years, that’s an additional expense you may not have the funds for.
Considering an electric car?
Just as we’ve watched other technologies change, the EV is sure to evolve and produce better features as their use gets more popular. Over time, we’re likely to see more charging stations readily available, as well as further promotion on the energy-saving and carbon-reducing features EVs provide.
In 10 years’ time, we could look back and laugh at the ridiculously heavy batteries EVs currently have, or perhaps petrol imports will become no longer available and a switch to electric vehicles will be fully made. Whether you’re for or against them, the development of smarter and healthier cars will do a lot for us in the long run – for both our personal pockets and for the environment. And with the current state of the environment (and the way it’s heading) it may be sooner rather than later when we don’t have a choice on what type of car we purchase.