Is the outlay required to charge an EV financially feasible or is a gasoline powered vehicle cheaper to run?
The battle between electric and gasoline powered cars is actually a very old one. Some one hundred years ago gas cars and electric ones were equally popular. But after a long fought ten year battle gasoline vehicles won out due to the cheaper price of gas and the ability of gas powered engines to run for greater distances. Today the competition has reopened due to major advancements in battery technology, the global concern over pollution, and the high price of oil.
From a low of only $20 a barrel in 1996, the price of oil has risen in the past 15 years fivefold to over $100 and continues to rise. During periods of crisis it has reached nearly $150. On July 11, 2008, for example, oil prices rose to a new record of $147.27 following concern over Iranian missile tests held at the time. With events in the Middle East so unstable, it seems possible that the price of oil will again increase sharply, putting the world economy in crisis. This makes the cost of charging an EV even more attractive.
A quick comparison reveals that the cost of charging an electric car is significantly cheaper than powering petrol based cars. A combustion engine vehicle can only travel about 13 km on a liter of petrol. Turning that same liter into electricity, a battery powered vehicle can travel up to 50 km. Therefore the cost of powering an EV is less than a third of that of a combustion based vehicle.
In addition to lower fuel costs, an EV also has lower maintenance costs. Electric cars have significantly fewer moving parts than conventional gasoline powered vehicles. For instance, in an EV there’s no timing belt or transmission. This means many of the maintenance costs associated with an internal combustion engine are eliminated. It also doesn’t require messy fuels to operate, so you’ll never have to stop for gas or worry about an oil change. The whole operation is cleaner and more efficient.