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Which is better, electric or petrol? EVs may win, experts say

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Sale of Electric car ready to boom federal policytechnological progress and environmental concerns.

According to a recent survey, 41% of Americans are at least somewhat likely to buy an electric car as their next car. poll From the University of Chicago and Associated Press.

However, many consumers see the high cost as a deterrent, with 60% citing it as the “main reason” for not buying an electric vehicle (EV).

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Most new EVs are luxury models with an average selling price of over $61,000, about $12,000 more than the auto industry average, according to Go to Consumer Reports.

But the initial cost doesn’t tell the whole story.

Electric vehicles are often better economics for the purchaser in the long run compared to their gasoline-only counterparts after factoring in regular costs such as maintenance, repairs and fuel such as gasoline and electricity. There is a possibility that it will become a commercial transaction.

Those costs tend to be lower for EVs, experts say, and can outpace the high initial sticker price over multiple years of ownership.

EVs could save $6,000 or more, but ‘it depends’

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According to Consumer Reports, a typical EV owner can save $6,000 to $10,000 over the life of most such vehicles compared to gasoline-only models. study From 2020. The study compared cars of similar size and segment (such as luxury cars) and defined a car’s lifespan as 200,000 miles.

Since the study was published, many EVs have gotten cheaper and conventional cars have gotten more expensive, said Chris Harto, senior transportation and energy policy analyst at Consumer Reports.

The Inflation Reduction Act, signed into law by President Joe Biden in August, federal tax credit This tax incentive, worth up to $7,500 and subject to some eligibility restrictions, aims to make EVs more affordable.

Comparing similar cars in terms of total cost of ownership, “battery electric vehicles tend to take the lead.” [internal combustion engine] On average, it’s a car,” says Debapriya Chakraborty, an economist and assistant professional researcher at the Center for Electric Vehicle Research at the University of California, Davis.

However, she said there are a number of caveats that could change the outcome for individual buyers.

These include local electricity and petrol prices. Availability of home charging and utilities. The latter is usually more expensive. and the cruising range of electric vehicles.

“Yes, EVs [generally] Better deal if you include everything [financial] You can earn incentives and claim primarily at home,” said Maxwell Woody, a research assistant at the University of Michigan’s Center for Sustainable Systems.

But there are many variables that could change the calculation, he added.

Consumers can use various online calculators. U.S. Department of Energy or University of California, Davis Electric Vehicle Research Centerestimates the total cost of ownership and carbon footprint of EVs based on different vehicle types and travel habits.

Impact of regional factors on the total cost of EVs

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To illustrate the caveat, Woody, who does regional life-cycle cost studies for gas and electric vehicles, gave the example of fictitious car buyers in Chicago and Houston.

He compared the total lifetime cost of a small electric sport utility vehicle with a range of 300 miles and a suggested retail price of $48,000 to a small gasoline SUV with a price tag of $31,000 in each city.

In Chicago, the average buyer goes electric for over 15 years. Woody said he would pay about $84,000 in total against his $87,000 for the petrol car.

In Houston it’s the opposite. The average buyer will pay about $82,000 for a gas car and $85,000 for an EV over the same period.

Here’s why. The Chicago buyer will get an additional $4,000 incentive from the state, making his EV cheaper at the time of purchase, Woody said. And since electricity is relatively cheap in Chicago, EVs are much cheaper to operate, he added.

On the other hand, gas prices in Houston are among the lowest in the country, and the overall fuel savings from EVs are less when compared to conventional vehicles. Texas also does not offer additional tax benefits to EV buyers.

According to Woody, the analysis explains that Chicago’s cooler temperatures generally make EVs less efficient.

Cost reduction is not the only driver of EV sales

Charging stations for electric and hybrid vehicles that use solar panels to generate electricity.

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EV sales accounted for They accounted for 5.8% of the nearly 14 million new cars sold in the US last year, according to Kelley Blue Book data. This was up from his 3.1% the year before.

Globally, about 13% of new cars sold in 2022 will be electric, and EVs are “rising in popularity.” according to to the International Energy Agency.

However, potential lifecycle cost savings aren’t the only factor driving purchases.

A University of Chicago-affiliated news agency poll found that 35% of Americans say reducing their personal impact on climate change is the primary reason they buy an electric vehicle. This was cited by 46% as the second reason for saving money on gasoline. .

There are several types of EVs. For example, there are fully electric vehicles that run on batteries only, and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles that have both a battery and a gasoline engine.

Purchasing an EV has direct consumer savings and broader social benefits.

Ingrid Malmgren

Policy Director, Plug In America

Because they don’t burn fossil fuels, fully electric cars emit no global warming greenhouse gases out their tailpipes.

Some emissions are Created When electric vehicles are built and charged, if the electricity comes from a dirty energy source such as burning coal rather than a clean energy source such as wind or solar.However, for electric vehicles far less impact on the overall climate Even factoring in these lifecycle emissions, according to researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

“Electric vehicles are a key technology for decarbonizing road transport,” says International Energy Agency Said.

Only 1.6 million of the 270 million cars and trucks on U.S. roads it’s electricity — Less than 1% of all vehicles, according to the World Economic Forum.

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Biden administration on April 12 Proposed Automobile Emissions Regulations EV sales are expected to grow dramatically. The regulation sets stricter pollution standards for cars and trucks, requiring the auto industry to sell more EVs to meet the requirements. The White House predicts that by 2032, 67% of new cars sold in the US will be electric.

This criterion is what the world’s top climate scientists said in their March report. Major trajectory correction required To avoid the worst impacts of climate change, including more severe floods, droughts and wildfires.

Transportation is the largest annual source of greenhouse gas pollution in the United States, accounting for 28% of total national emissions by 2021. according to to the Environmental Protection Agency.

Ingrid Malmgren, Policy Director at Plug In America, said:

Why Battery and Range Matter to Buyers

Battery size, which affects an EV’s range, can make a big difference in cost of ownership, says Woody of the University of Michigan. Generally, the wider the range, the higher the price tag.

According to Woody, an EV with about 200 miles of range now sells for as much or less than a gas car, even without tax breaks or other lifetime savings.

Woody said consumers who buy EVs with a range of 300 miles may need a federal tax break to achieve selling prices on par with gasoline-only cars. .

According to a 2021 report published by Argonne, a U.S. Department of Energy research institute, fully electric vehicles with a range of 200 miles have the lowest lifecycle cost of ownership of any type of passenger vehicle.

According to Argonne, the consumer cost of such a vehicle is 45.3 cents per mile over 15 years of ownership, beaten only by hybrid electric vehicles. That compares to his 48 cents a mile for a gasoline-only car. However, due to the relatively high cost of batteries, an all-electric vehicle with a range of 300 miles, he ranked last at 51.8 cents per mile.

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fuel and maintenance costs

According to the University of Michigan, consumers nationwide can save an average of 55 percent on fuel by switching to all-electric vehicles. study Published in January.

Studies have shown that over 90% of homes also reduce the greenhouse gases they produce.

Studies show that the biggest cost savings occur in the South and West. Only 0.1% of households in Alaska, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan and Rhode Island will see their energy costs rise by switching to all-electric vehicles.

The fuel cost savings brought about by the adoption of all-electric vehicles are “more than twice as low as American households (or more than 80%). [transportation] Low-income households were found to benefit less than high-income households.

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Studies have shown that residential charging is more cost-effective than public charging. For renters who can’t install charging stations in their homes, for example, such dynamics can hurt savings and convenience, said Chakraborty of the University of California.

And because electric vehicles have fewer moving parts, they generally require less maintenance, says Plug In America’s Malmgren. EVs often have longer warranties than gasoline vehicles. By law, an eight-year, 100,000-mile warranty must be maintained, and more consumer-friendly rules apply in California, she said.

“We break less,” says Malmgren. “I haven’t replaced the brake pads, transmission, belts, hoses or fluids.”

“They are much easier to maintain,” she said.

According to Consumer Reports’ Harto, the average electric SUV owner can save $1,700 a year in combined fuel and maintenance costs. This, he said, is a rough guide to current prices, as he assumes gas prices of $3.50 per gallon. Which is better, electric or petrol? EVs may win, experts say

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