Are you considering a transition from a traditional car to a fully electric one? There are some things you should know before making your decision. Electric cars are awesome and are indeed the future, but should you? There are pros and cons to EVs (Electric Vehicles) just as there is to the traditional petrol and diesel-fueled vehicles. Though, as you would expect, the pros and cons are different.
As interesting as the switch may appear to be, it will take some time before you adjust your lifestyle to this new change. Another question that you probably have in mind already is which model or brand to go for. Well, to help you make a better decision, we have compiled a 5 step guide you should consider before becoming an EV owner.
No doubt, range anxiety is one thing you want to prevent when you finally own an electric car. EVs vary in range. While some can go up to 600km, some can barely go 200km. If you travel long distances frequently, getting a car that can’t cover the distance on a full charge can be disappointing. The distance depends on the make and model. While most EVs today are built with batteries powerful enough to comfortably suit most people’s daily routine of home to office and back, you may need more. So, this is very crucial
Some long range EVs that are worth mentioning are the Tesla Roadster, which can go up to 500km or more, the Tesla Cyber truck, Tesla Model S Long Range, Volkswagen ID.3 Tour, among others.
- Cost of purchase
Electric cars are known to be more expensive than conventionally powered ones. Prices can be as high as 15% to 60% higher than regular petrol powered cars. However, one good thing is that one does not have to worry about buying petrol or diesel and some other expenses one have to keep up with regularly when in ownership of a traditional car are non-existent in EVs. This is not to say that charging an electric car is free, but it is relatively cheaper to run. You may even come across free charging stations. Below is a list of some of the most expensive and cheapest electric cars in the country.
- Nissan Leaf XE 40 (€28,145)
- Tesla Model S (€117,000)
- Tesla Model 3 (€49,750)
- Volkswagen ID 4 (€46,120)
- BMW i3 (€39,695)
- Charging Time
This is definitely one of the major setbacks with electric cars. Charging takes from tens of minutes to tens of hours. While some can get fully charged in 40 – 50 minutes, some may take up to 8 hours. Again, it depends on the model you are going for, the size of the battery built into the car, and the type of charger being used. This is one thing you certainly want to consider before owning one. Charging infrastructures for these vehicles is still not at the expected level, most especially when compared to the number of petrol stations in the country. But that is sure to get better with time. At the moment, having a dedicated EV charging station at home is the best option. While it is also possible to charge through the regular 3 pin domestic sockets available in every home, it is slow as it is mostly capped at 2.3KW. It will only be suitable for overnight charging.
- Battery Lifecycle
Rechargeable batteries are known to suffer from power reduction over time. As you recharge and use every day, the health deteriorates and the amount of charge it can hold reduces. The major effect this will have is in the range the car will be able to cover as years go by. While most EV manufacturers give a 5 – 8 years warranty on their car batteries, you can expect it to last for 10 – 20 years.
- Maintenance cost
Today, snubbing a conventional car for an electric one is an investment. While it does have a low maintenance cost, the price of purchase and installation of the charging station is still on the high side but there are grants available in Ireland to help with the cost up to the value of €600 toward the purchase and installation of a home charger unit. When choosing, you should consider the specifications of various models and seek an expert opinion. Even if more expensive, it is always advisable to go for the model that will serve you for long and will justify the price over a conventional one.
Electric cars are here to stay and it is never too early to own one, considering the benefits it has over conventional cars. The most important thing is to ensure you are making the right decision and you are buying one at a time convenient for you. No doubt buying one can be tricky considering the level of the development of the tech, most especially when it comes to charging, but we can only expect it to get better. The wider electric cars spread, the more the development.