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Thinking About Buying an Electric Vehicle?

Ampion Renewable Energy


June 21, 2021

Are You Thinking About Buying an Electric Vehicle?

In the blink of an eye, technology can change our lives. We’ve all seen it happen. A good example is sometimes called the iPhone moment. In 3 years or less iPhones changed the way we communicate. Since the Industrial Revolution, iPhones are only one example of many culture-altering events that we can credit to modern science and technology. The speed with which Covid vaccines were developed, in record time, is another familiar example. A common current question is whether electric vehicles will take over our transportation with the same speed. And will they restrict emissions without hurting growth?

When the first electric vehicle hit the market in 2010, just 300 were sold. The following year total electric vehicle sales grew to 17,700. By 2019 electric sales had already climbed to 327,000. Nearly 6.8 million electric vehicles have sold since they came on the market. While today’s market share for electric vehicles (EVs) is small, there are aggressive programs to change that percentage and they are well underway.

If automakers meet their pledged goals, EVs could dominate the road very rapidly.

  • One example is GM’s pledge to give us about 30 electric vehicles to choose from by the end of 2025.
  • In the same 2025 timeframe, GM aims to triple the public fast-charging network by adding more than 2,700 renewable fast chargers.
  • GM’s rivals all have similar plans. Toyota announced plans to generate half of its sales from electrified vehicles by 2025, five years earlier than it previously estimated. BMW says it will have 25 EV models by 2025. Volkswagen plans to reach its target of 1 million electric cars by the end of 2023, two years ahead of its prior predictions, with 70 EV models by 2028.

If you’re someone who can afford the upfront cost of a brand new battery-powered car, subsidies for getting your combustible engine off the road are attractive.

  • Today’s EV buyer qualifies for federal tax credits of up to $7,500.
  • Depending on where you live, your city or state might also provide additional financial incentives for electric cars.
  • The Department of Energy maintains a full list of rebates, tax credits and other programs offered in each state, and more are expected to become available as President Biden works to expand the use of electric vehicles.
  • There are subsidies for EV chargers, too. In some cases, you can save up to $1,000 for a home charger. Find out if your utility offers any special incentives for EV chargers.

Electrifying transportation is a large-scale solution in the making. It’s moving forward with great support and great speed.

  • The subsidies and industry efforts mentioned above – and more are anticipated – will boost the demand that’s needed to speed up advances and economies in EV manufacturing.
  • Mass manufacturing will lower prices by churning out more cars, faster, cheaper, and better. That makes rapid adoption more realistic for a lot of folks.
  • This trend is recognizable throughout the auto industry’s history.

Here are more compelling reasons electric vehicles could take over quickly.

EVs already cost less without subsidies if you factor in the comparatively modest maintenance costs. EVs have fewer moving parts than internal combustion engines and don’t require oil changes, which reduces an EV’s lifetime maintenance costs.

  • Consumer Reports states that “owning an electric vehicle will save the typical driver $6,000-$10,000 over the life of the vehicle, compared to owning a comparable gas-powered vehicle.”
  • The average cost of fuel for an electric vehicle is about 60% less than for a gasoline vehicle.
  • The confidence in battery technology improvements in the next decade holds great promise for range extension, more efficiency, and better charging times.
  • The cost savings of EV ownership are only expected to increase with new models and battery cost reductions

For most users, the range of an EV compares favorably with that of a gas-powered engine.

  • Today’s EVs already approach 400 miles per charge, with most EVs averaging between 250-300 miles or more.
  • For most uses, the range of an EV compares favorably with that of a gas-powered engine since most gas-powered cars have a range of 300 miles.
  • First-generation electric vehicles were barely capable of running 100 miles on a charge only 11 years ago, creating range anxiety.

In many ways, it seems possible – if not probable when looked at through a certain lens — that we are on the threshold of a rapid and expansive growth in fast charging battery-powered cars, similar to the rapid expansion of smartphones.

If this information finds you thinking more about whether a battery-powered car will be the next new car in your driveway, you’re not alone.

  • In 2018, about 20 percent of Americans said they were likely to buy an electric car in the future because of concerns about the environment and the lower vehicle operating costs.
  • Transportation is the biggest source of planet-warming emissions in the U.S. — mostly from cars and light-duty trucks.
  • An EV produces about a third as much carbon dioxide per mile as a gasoline-powered car – and even less if you charge it from completely renewable sources.

One of the recently released recommendations from the International Energy Agency is to end the sale of internal combustion engine cars by 2035. Their report states,

“We estimate that around 55% of the cumulative emissions reductions in the pathway are linked to consumer choices such as purchasing an EV, retrofitting a house with energy-efficient technologies, or installing a heat pump.”

That gives us about the right amount of time to evaluate how much longer to keep our gas-powered cars, which last a long time because of today’s high manufacturing standards. Think twice about your next new car purchase and don’t forget that joining a local Community Solar farm also reduces emissions without hurting growth. Check out Community Solar options near you.

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