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Publish Date - February 01, 2022

Author: Patrick Peterson

Categories:   Useful Automotive Information   

Electric Vehicles and The Future

Electric vehicles (EV’s) have become more common in the last decade. Currently, car buyers have extensive options for electric cars, including hybrid and fully electric in several sizes and classes.

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Electric vehicles (EV’s) have become more common in the last decade. Currently, car buyers have extensive options for electric cars, including hybrid and fully electric in several sizes and classes.

EV’s are quickly becoming an essential category in the automotive industry. According to the Pew Research Center, 7% of U.S. adults report currently having an electric or hybrid vehicle, and 39% stated they were very or somewhat likely to seriously consider buying an electric vehicle the next time they’re in the market for new wheels. As of 2020, nearly 1.8 million EVs were registered in the U.S., more than three times as many as in 2016, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA). EV’s are significantly more common in urban areas.

What are Electric Vehicles?

Electric vehicles are automobiles that do not rely solely on gasoline but instead use electricity for power. EV’s fall into three main categories:

  • All-electric vehicles, which are also known as battery-electric vehicles. These cars do not use any gasoline.
  • Plug-in hybrid vehicles. These vehicles use batteries to power an electric motor and gasoline to operate. Their batteries can be charged with a wall outlet or charging equipment, by the internal combustion engine, or through regenerative braking.
  • Fuel cell vehicles. This type of EV uses hydrogen gas to power an electric motor. Fuel cell vehicles combine hydrogen and oxygen to produce electricity, run a motor, and do not rely on gasoline. These vehicles are charged via hydrogen refueling stations, and this category of EVs is still relatively new.

History of EV’s

Electric vehicles are not new. The origins of electric vehicles go back to the 1800s. Several electric batteries and vehicles were built in different parts of Europe and the US. Names that we associate with automobile inventions were also involved in the exploration of EVs. For example, Ferdinand Porsche, the sports car company founder, developed an electric vehicle in 1898. He also introduced the first-ever hybrid electric car. Thomas Edison was involved in efforts to build a better electric vehicle battery. It was also reported that Henry Ford at one point partnered with Edison to try to develop a low-cost electric car in 1914.

The ultimate rise of gasoline-powered vehicles ended up taking over. Several factors supported the rise of gas-powered vehicles, such as the introduction of the electric starter, which replaced the hand crank, the improvement in U.S. roads, and the discovery of crude oil in Texas. It became more economically efficient to rely on gasoline as the primary power source for automobiles.

Knowing if an EV is Right for You

If you are contemplating a vehicle purchase, you might be wondering if an EV is right for you. To thoroughly vet this idea, it is essential to consider some factors, including:

  • Typical distances you drive.
  • Access to charging options.
  • The size of vehicle your lifestyle requires.

As a car buyer, you have a lot of choices, and the options are constantly changing with new models hitting the market, dealers providing incentives, and government subsidies changing from year to year. Take your time with this important decision, and accept that it will take some time to finalize.

Here are some steps you should take in your decision-making process:

  • Explore consumer reports for various EV makes and models to assess the quality.
  • Get a vehicle history report for used models you may be considering. This report can provide much helpful info, including:
    • States in which the car has been registered previously.
    • A listing of previous owners.
    • A Lemon Law verification.
    • Fair market value and anticipated depreciation – this data can help you delve deeper into the economic side of the car-buying decision.
  • Speak to friends that drive EV’s about their experience.
  • Test drive a few different EV’s to get a feel for how they handle the road.
    • Make sure to explore different road types, from highways to rural roads.
    • Assess the ownership cost versus the savings on gasoline.

Are EV’s the Future?

Many factors point to EV’s having a bright future and being here to stay. These include the world’s over-reliance on crude oil creating deficits and price fluctuations with gasoline, pressure to reduce emissions, and the trends toward sustainability. In many situations, EV’s are more economically efficient than gasoline-powered vehicles. The advances in research and development of EV’s have made them more accessible and available at various price points. Additionally, there are government subsidies for EVs, driven by the need for regions to reduce fossil fuel emissions. These subsidies can make purchasing an EV that much more affordable and accessible. Electricity, which can still be quite expensive in some areas, is also evolving as new research is making the most of solar power while exploring alternative ways to source electricity. There are many reasons to believe that EV’s are here to stay, and fewer and fewer naysayers as EV market share steadily grows.

Pros and Cons of EV’s

Electronic vehicles offer the advantages of cleaner emissions, less expensive sources of power, and the convenience of not going to the gas station, or at least visiting it less often if we are talking about a hybrid EV. EV’s are quieter when running, which many drivers also appreciate. Cons of EVs include the higher cost of some makes and models and limited access to charging stations, particularly in rural areas. Total battery life should also be considered, as it may limit the options for longer drives. These are some of the reasons that EV’s are much more common in cities than rural areas. It is important to consider lifestyle when going through the pros and cons of purchasing an EV.

Conclusion

Electric vehicles are undoubtedly here to stay, and it is exciting to observe their constantly evolving technology. The advantages of EV’s are powerful, and they can help drivers save money and be more sustainable. This increases pressure for gas-powered vehicles to keep up, resulting in some exciting adjustments to their product offerings.

Buying a new or used car is always a significant decision with economic implications for at least a few years. Take the necessary time to read consumer reports and reviews and ask all your questions. With some research and exploration, you are sure to find the best next vehicle for you!