The era of the electric vehicle is not off in the future.
Sales are growing rapidly, and with the fuel savings and other benefits, several consumer advocacy groups and media organizations believe that the era of the electric vehicle is not down the road. They say it’s already here!
Blue Grass Energy and other electric cooperatives have seen growing interest in electric vehicles. That is why BGE wants to help members who have expressed interest in making informed decisions.
Over the past 10 years, global sales of EVs have grown rapidly. In the next two decades, experts predict over half of all passenger vehicle sales and about one-third of the global vehicle fleet will be electric.
Car manufacturers are expanding the types of EVs offered. Volvo and other manufacturers are going all electric and planning to build more EVs in coming years.
As Consumer Reports has noted, frequent fluctuations in gas prices can quickly shift the priorities of customers to focus on operating costs. That’s one reason electric cars today show up in almost all vehicle categories.
EVs offer the following major advantages:
- Savings on fuel. In March of 2020, the U.S. Department of Energy estimated the cost to fuel an EV in Kentucky is the equivalent of about $1 per gallon for a comparable gas-powered car.
- Less maintenance. There are no oil changes for an all-electric vehicle.
- Environmental benefits. A battery EV has zero emissions.
- Declining prices and improving drive ranges.
There are two basic types of EVs:
- A Plug-in Hybrid runs on a battery and gas. It typically travels 25 to 50 miles on its electric battery, then switches to a gas engine.
- A Battery Electric Vehicle operates completely on electricity, typically traveling 200 to 300 miles on a full charge. Some models can travel longer than that.
Both re-charge by plugging into a power source.
When it comes to cost, prices vary significantly. Many popular models are $20,000 to $40,000. Sports Utility Vehicles often range anywhere from $50,000 to $65,000. Luxury sedans are much higher priced.
The time to charge an EV will depend entirely on the inverter and charger used. A standard outlet will work, but at 120 volts, this level #1 charger only adds about 3 to 5 miles of range per hour.
At 240 volts, a level #2 station adds 20 to 25 miles of range per hour to an all-electric EV. At 480 volts, a level #3 station charges to 80 percent of capacity in half an hour. That’s enough time to shop or eat lunch and be near full charge to reach the next destination. If done too often, though, quick charging can shorten the life of an EV battery.
The Edison Foundation predicts that EV sales will reach 1.2 million a year in the next five years. An American Automobile Association survey showed that 20 percent of Americans will likely purchase an EV for their next car.