Making the choice between hybrid, gas and electric today takes some time and a little thought. Hybrid cars have a combination of electric motors and a gas engine. Gas driven cars don't have an electric motor. All electric cars depend on their batteries and an electric motor and have nothing else. Before you choose one, you'll have to answer some questions.
How far from work do you live?
If you drive more than a hundred miles a day, you'll have to stay away from all-electric cars such as the Nissan Leaf. Their range is around 80 miles.
How much do you want to spend on a car?
If the answer is under 30,000, you can't buy a Chevy Volt or any of the Tesla models. They cost from 35,000 to over 100,000.
How important is your commitment to the ecology?
If you are strongly opposed to anything that wastes natural resources, consider a new car in this order; an all-electric such as the Nissan Leaf, Ford Focus Electric or the Tesla Model S, a hybrid that emphasizes electric over gas such as the Chevy Volt that uses a gas engine as a backup to charge the batteries or a Toyota Prius that uses the electric motor and the gas engine in equal amounts, a hybrid that depends mainly on the gas engine and uses an electric motor as an aid in acceleration such as the Honda Civic, a gas-powered car that gets superb gas mileage such as the Chevrolet Sonic.
The manufacturers of electric cars reduce pollution with one of three engine/motor configurations.
The first method is simply a set of batteries and an electric motor. Critics have charged the all-electric car with being clunky, slow and ugly. The Tesla Model S crushes these criticisms with styling to match the best European luxury sedan and stunning performance. The motor on a Model S develops 416 horsepower ad 443 lb-ft of torque. Good enough to blow through acceleration tests with a zero to 60 mph time of 4.0 seconds with a top speed of 133 mph. All-electric cars don't produce any pollution.
The second configuration uses the electric motor first with the gas engine as a backup. The Chevrolet Volt has a 149 horsepower electric motor as its primary propulsion unit. When the charge in the batteries falls to a set limit, an 80 horsepower gas engine turns a generator to supply electricity to the motor. The gas engine doesn't power the wheels. The Chevrolet Volt gets 37 combined mpg using just the gas engine. In typical usage, with the motor being the primary means of propulsion and the gas engine coming on when needed, the Volt gets a rating of 97 combined mpg.
The third configuration is the most comfortable for the driver but has the worst mileage and pollution for the three systems. In this kind of configuration, the gas engine produces most of the power required for driving with the electric motor aiding acceleration. The Honda Civic Hybrid gets a mileage rating of 44 combined mpg. The traditionally powered Civic did no better than 33 combined mpg.
The Nissan Leaf and the Honda Fit EV are two of the most popular fully-electric vehicles on the market today. The primary reason for their popularity is likely their affordability. The 2012 Nissan Leaf carries an MSRP of 35,200 and the 2013 Honda Fit EV carries an MSRP of 36,625. Both vehicles qualify for the a Federal Tax credit of 7500, which would bring their respective prices to 26,800 and 29,125. Not bad for a brand new vehicle.
The greatest challenge with electric vehicles is the charge. EVs are notorious for requiring long periods of time to fully charge and then only being able to cover a limited range before needing a full charge again. One of the biggest frustrations EV owners have is that range is affected by so many variables; it can be difficult to predict the range they'll get from day to day. Variables include weather, weight of the passengers and cargo, the manner in which the EV is driven and battery pack temperature. The EPA estimates that the Nissan Leaf gets 73 miles to a charge, that a charge at 240 volts takes 7 hours and that the Leaf will cost 600 per year to power. The Honda Fit EV fares slightly better with a range of 82 miles, a charging time of 4 hours at 240 volts and an annual fuel cost of 500. Save on your electricity rates when you compare electricity rates in Houston.
With low annual fuel costs, a heavy tax credit and competitive retail pricing, electric vehicles are the way of the future, even from a purely economic standpoint. Charging stations are cropping up at offices and city centers across the U.S., and EV ranges are constantly being improved by manufacturers. With top speeds of up to 90 mph and increased torque over comparably-sized gasoline-powered vehicles, EVs also deliver a peppy and fun drive. What's not to love?
As many of us now now, fuel prices are skyrocketing across the United States. The average cost per gallon for gas is 3.80 and in many states, the price is nearing 4.00 a gallon. Automobile customers in the United States have been wondering, "What is the resale value of my electric car?" and "What is the cost difference of turning in my gasoline automobile for an electric?". Especially if your car is already paid for, whether it be electric or gas, this method is not a financial gain. As cars values drop immediately after the automobile is purchased and driven off of the sales lot, keeping a cars value at it's highest point is nearly impossible.
The only way to really get a deal out of trading in your electric car for a gas car would be to trade in a incredibly compact electric car for a similar compact gas automobile. The other way around would be to trade in an enormous SUV or truck for a micro sized electric car. Savings in these trade-ins are estimated at only about 400.00 to a few thousand dollars in savings a year. This method of course is only feasible if your trading in a gas automobile that gets incredibly low gas milage. Resale value of electric cars in comparison to gas guzzlers is nearly the same.
How long an electric car will last is dependent on three things, the life of the battery, the motor, and the chassis. There is no reason for there to be any difference in the life expectancy of an electronic chassis and an internal combustion (ICE) engine frame. Therefore there is only the question of how long the motor and/or battery will last.
An electronic motor is less complex than an engine, and it contains less moving parts, hence less opportunities for failure. With no transmission or oil system and a smaller less complicated cooling system there is little to go wrong that would necessitate needing a replacement vehicle. What it does have, however, is a battery that will eventually need to be replaced or another car purchased.
How long a battery lasts in an electric car depends partly on the type of battery the car uses and on how low the charge commonly gets before recharging. The live expectancy of the five battery types found in today's cars varies. Battery life measures in cycles of discharge and recharge. How long the battery will last is generally considered to be four to five years depending on how many miles per year the car is driven.
The thesis and hook are simple, and they begin with a tired refrain from the luddites who defy progress: the cost benefit of an electric car is poor. Not only in terms of economics, but in terms of green economics as well. And sadly, this hypothetical scenario is correct. The lithium is often bid at the least common denominator from overseas sources with questionable ethics, not to mention the distribution of cars from energy intensive barges and cargo ports. The larger overseas automakers realize the impact of this, whether it be public relations or the actual urge to dimish their carbon footprint In a time of worldwide economic uncertainty, subsidies for innovation in any sector is limited and the auto industry is no exception. As a consequence, the electric car is not an attainable for the majority of the populace, and consequences demand is crunched. The technology is new and runs into problems outside of a vacuum, including the infamous "death rattle" of the most prominent hybrid in the United States. The main target of efficiency is car weight. Essentially, unimpressive and inexpensive cars without hybrid or electric technology consume gas at a rate lower than some hybrids. The goal is to get cars with the aforementioned qualities to a reasonable price and let the idea spread like wildfire.
How exactly green is your brand new electric car? This all depends on many factors but the main factor is surprisingly where you plugin your car. Behind that issue is the carbon footprint of the car. The big problem has been discovered to be carbon dioxide gases that are a result of charging the electric cars battery which can supposedly contribute to the change in our climate around the world. A simple example of how an electric car can be better for the environment is if the car is located in the state of California, plugging it into a house that has paired with a green company such as wind or water for power.
A an example of an electric car hurting the environment more is if the car is being charged through a house that has paired up with a dirty and polluting plant such as oil and coal. Sometimes in this case, the electric car can be worse for the environment than a gas made car. The other factor consumers need to take into thought is the fact that the battery of an electric car is not recyclable and hurts the environment greatly. Overall, if your electric car is connected to a home that is powered by a green and environmentally friendly power plant, your electric car is as green as can be!
With the electric car quickly gaining ground thanks to government programs and increased mileage, along with massive adoption by major car companies, many people are now fully considering electric cars as a viable option. The question is, are electric cars actually as economically viable as many people have been led to believe by both car manufacturers and the US government?
The first thing you need to keep in mind is that the initial cost of an electric car is very high. You will be spending at least 50,000 and you could spend upwards of 100,000. However, you'll eventually get that money back in savings, but you really need to keep in mind how long it would take you to save that much money from charging. Remember, you still have to pay for the electricity.
Another important factor to consider is the mileage you will get from the car. All electric cars that exist today have very limited ranges, at most 200 miles. If you would need to constantly stop every 200 miles to charge the car up for another 8 hours at a hotel or something, you're really not saving money, so keep your travel habits in mind.