BreakingModern — From speedy Teslas, to the more affordable Chevy Volts and Nissan Leafs, the roads are seeing more and more electric cars. And more are coming. In 2015 car makers will offer more than 20 different electric vehicle models (EVs). Want one? Here’s why an electric car should be your next vehicle.
One of the immediate drawbacks to EVs is the scarcity of electric vehicle charging stations. Plus, you can’t fill up the battery in a couple of minutes like you can with a gas car.
Still, despite the drawbacks, there are a number of compelling reasons why you should consider buying an electric car.
The Obvious: Less Pollution
Worried about global warming? Excessive smog and associated respiratory problems? Our foreign dependence on oil? The volatile price of gas? (If not, you probably shoud be). An electric car can put your worried conscience to rest. There are zero emissions with electric cars so you’re doing the world a solid by not pumping more carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide and other types of toxic gas into the air.
Be warned: your conscience won’t be completely clear because the electricity used to power your car may come from electric plants that use coal to generate electricity, which is a primary contributor of greenhouse gasses. You’re safe, of course, if you use a solar powered electric charging station.
Save Money on Gas
With gas prices as volatile as the stock market, driving an electric car can save you some serious cash. As the car dealer told me while he pitched the electric Nissan Leaf, “The savings in gas prices will almost pay for the car’s lease.” It was a good selling point.
The average electric car requires about $3.74 worth of electricity to travel 100 miles, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, while a comparable conventional car costs $13.36 to travel the same distance. So for the electric car owner who drives 12,000 miles a year, they’d pay about $449 for electricity to power the car, while a conventional car driver would average around $1,603 in fuel costs. Energy.gov offers a fun way to compare the costs of these vehicles.
Icing on the Cake
Buying an electric car comes with a host of other benefits. The federal government allows up to $7,500 as a tax credit for purchasing an EV and numerous states and local governments also offer incentives. If you live in California and deal with horrendous commute traffic, your EV will get you into the carpool lane during commute times. You can also lease an EV and factor the full federal and state tax credits into the price.
EVs Go the Extra Mile
While in the past, EVs only drove about 35 to 50 miles per charge, today’s EVs drive much further—up to 245 miles for some models. If you take into account that most of the drives people undertake are 10 miles or less, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation, normal drives in an electric car are feasible. Plus, EV charging stations are becoming more widespread.
Still, last year, 96,000 electric cars were sold in the U.S, which was more than half a percent of the total market of 16.5 million vehicles. Still, EVs are beginning to show up more frequently than ever on the roads. As the technology and infrastructure progresses, more people will realize they have the option to ditch their gas-powered cars and grab an electric. You should be one of the first.
For Bmod, I’m Chandler Harris.
Image Credits (from top down): Tesla, Nissan and Chevy
Featured and Header Image: “Carbonfilament” by Ulfbastel - Own work (own photo). Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons.